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Wednesday, 12 January 2011

The Revd Roger White retires from St Thomas a Becket in Hamburg

On 2 January, the Church of St Thomas a Becket in Hamburg was full for a special service of farewell for their priest, the Revd Roger White. The Eucharist included special music, some from Africa, some instrumental, some favourites of Fr Roger, himself a keen singer, as well as poetry and tributes. A festive meal followed, a tradition in St Thomas's, heartily encouraged by Fr Roger himself.

In over 10 years of ministry in St Thomas's, Fr Roger has been a much loved pastor to this multicultural community. His care for fine liturgy, and his preaching and teaching have been widely appreciated. Through quiet pastoral outreach he brought many to faith during his time in Hamburg. Among his ecumenical colleagues he is widely respected and his impeccable German has enabled him to be an outstanding ambassador for the Church of England. He has also served the wider church through time on Diocesan Synod. As bishop I have many very happy memories of visits to St Thomas's during Fr Roger's time, and have much appreciated our working relationship.

At the celebration Fr Roger and his wife Heidi were presented with a gift of two splendid photos by the Ghanaian members of the congregation, depicting the couple in traditional African dress. It was a moving expression of the affection of the entire community for them both.

The diocesan family send warmest wishes to Roger and Heidi, and every blessing on their retirement.

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