Bishop Heralds New Era

by Michael Ford last modified 21 Dec, 2012 03:44 PM

The Bishop of Salisbury, Nicholas Holtam, has welcomed the appointment of the Revd David Harknett, who starts his new post as the Co-ordinator of the Energising Local Ministry (ELM) project next week (Tuesday 8 January).

Bishop Heralds New Era

The Bishop with Revd Harknett

David will work within the Melbury Team, near Sherborne, where he is currently licensed, as well as advising, resourcing and encouraging similar forms of work in each of four other pilot projects across the diocese. He will explore and establish new patterns of lay ministry, continuing work that began in 2011.

The other pilots include the Whitton Team, based near Marlborough; the Avon River Team, near Stonehenge; Woodhill, Royal Wootton Bassett and Lyneham; and the Golden Cap Team in Lyme Bay.

Bishop Holtam said, “This is one of a number of initiatives we have set up where we are experimenting and trying to do things differently. I am convinced that, at this stage in the Church’s life, we need to take some calculated risks, experimenting and learning together about what works in the life of the Church.”

Revd Harknett said, “My plan is to visit each pilot before Easter, pray with them, get to know their area and start a dialogue in each case. That should result in a lively Reference Group meeting after Easter. What most excites me about this role is the opportunity it affords to help attract new disciples of Jesus Christ to His work in this Diocese.”

Gil Williams, Chairman of the ELM project, said, “All the pilots have made substantial progress towards the objectives of the Energising Local Ministry project; however, the appointment of David should add a new sense of urgency as we seek to discover new forms of ministry in our diocese.”

The main ELM priorities include collaboration across parish boundaries; distinctive Christianity; partnership in practical community work alongside existing provision; partnership between lay and ordained ministers; learning and training based on the best practice developed in the pilot projects; and celebrating through worship and church services.


Revd Harknett was recently licensed at a ceremony in the Chapel at South Canonry, Salisbury, on 18 December 2012. Those attending included the Bishop of Salisbury; the priest’s family; representatives from pilot projects across the diocese; the Diocesan Secretary, Lucinda Herklots; the Archdeacon of Sherborne, Paul Taylor; and Mr Gil Williams.

He will report monthly to Paul Taylor and Gil Williams on progress, developments and future plans, and annually to Diocesan Synod and Bishop's Council. Other potential pilot projects have asked to join this initiative; these will be reviewed after September 2013.

The Bishop of Salisbury
Lay Ministry 
Diocesan Synod

Further information
Contact Michael Ford, Communications Co-ordinator:
01722 438651, 07500 836989,


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