There are seven archdeacons in this Diocese in Europe. To be an archdeacon is a demanding job. They share with the bishops in the oversight of the congregations in their archdeaconry, and as senior priests and pastors, come alongside the congregations, supporting them and giving key leadership in times of change, challenge and even conflict. It is a ministry that needs our prayers and every opportunity for encouragement.
Each year, for several years now, the archdeacons have met together for a time of prayer, reflection and mutual support. This year they met in Rome, hosted by the Archdeacon of Italy and Malta, the Venerable Jonathan Boardman. Some of their wives joined them as they themselves offer steadfast support behind the scenes to their husbands and put up with many prolonged absences!
During their meeting in Rome, they attended the Wednesday General Audience with the Pope. Of course, one of the most famous Archdeacons in Christian history was St Laurence, who was Archdeacon of Rome.