Churchpeople Honoured for Outstanding Service

by Gerry Lynch last modified 18 May, 2015 12:44 PM

Three local churchpeople honoured with Aldhelm Cross for dedicated church volunteering

Three churchpeople from the Diocese are to be given an award for ‘outstanding’ service to the Church at a service in Salisbury Cathedral. 

The Aldhelm Cross, named after the Saxon Bishop who was instrumental in bringing Christianity to this part of England, is awarded to lay people who have given selfless service to the Diocese over a number of years. 

Those to receive the award at Choral Evensong at Salisbury Cathedral on Sunday 24 May at 4.30 pm are Ann Howard from Potterne, Tony Moore from Weymouth, and Gil Williams from Ryme Intrinseca. 

Bishop Nicholas, who will present the awards, said, “All of our Aldhelm Cross recipients have given selflessly of their time and talents in different areas of church life. The Cross is a richly deserved token of thanks from the whole Diocese. 

“Ann Howard is President of the Mothers’ Union in the Diocese, whose prayer and social action are at the heart of many churches and which has done so much to help women excel in church leadership. After a career in education, Tony Moore gave selflessly as a church school governor in particularly challenging circumstances. Gil Williams has given many years as Chair of our Board of Finance, ensuring we remain financially solvent while keeping costs for our churches as low as possible. He has supported a significant number of parishes in their fundraising and mission. 

“Churches are at the heart of every community, in our villages, towns and urban neighbourhoods. None of them would be able to serve others in the way they do without the passionate commitment of thousands of volunteers.” 

Notes on those being awarded the Aldhelm Cross
Ann Howard worships at St Mary’s in Potterne. Her first career was as a social worker, and she has always been committed to social justice and social action. She became particularly involved in Mothers’ Union in Salisbury Diocese through its social policy programme, as it sought to highlight the effects of inappropriate advertising particularly on children and families. As Diocesan President of Mothers’ Union, she enables its 1700 members to support projects locally and internationally, from supporting victims of domestic violence, to helping prisoners’ families stay together to challenging teenagers to consider what it means to be a parent.

A West Midlands native from a long line of teachers, Tony Moore moved south in 1987 to become Deputy Head of Hardye’s School in Dorchester. A 38 year teaching career specializing in history culminated as Director of Sixth Form at the amalgamated Thomas Hardye School, one of the largest and most successful State Sixth Forms in the country. Tony then spent four years as a governor at St Aldhelm’s Academy, two of them as Chair, displaying outstanding commitment in a role he knew would be challenging from the start. Tony lives in Weymouth where he worships at Emmanuel Church.

After service with the Royal Tank Regiment, Gil Williams spent most of a senior business career in the USA, focused on semiconductors, computers and telecommunications. Gil has lived in Ryme Intrinseca since 1998, where he served as churchwarden for five years and as Lay Chairman of Sherborne Deanery for 11 years. He has been a member of the Bishop’s Council and Chairman of the Diocesan Board of Finance since 2006.

But for a longer period than that, he has worked tirelessly with parishes, walking alongside them and helping them in their plans for mission or in fundraising for mission projects. Gil worships at Sherborne Abbey, and was previously churchwarden at both St Hippolytus in Ryme and St Andrew’s in Yetminster.

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