|The Very Revd John Arnold, centre, with Fr Matthew Jones|
The Church of St Thomas Becket in Hamburg welcomed as its guest preacher at its Sunday Eucharist on 5 May, the former Dean of Durham, the Very Revd John Arnold. This Eucharist which celebrating the feast of Saints Philip and James, concluded the parish's extensive involvement over the days of Kirchentag in Hamburg and it was fitting that such a prominent ecumenist and distinguished European Churchman should be the preacher. Dr Arnold was in fact, one of the drafters of the Meissen Common Statement. He has also served as the President of the Conference of European Churches, and even had a hand in shaping our diocese at the time of the preparation of the Diocese in Europe Measure in 1980!
The Chaplain of St Thomas Becket, the Revd Matthew Jones, informed the congregation that over 1100 people had attended services at St Thomas's over the 4 days of Kirchentag, and many more people visited the church which was open for prayer each day.
It had been a busy time for parishioners, many of who helped as volunteers at the Kirchentag stalls for the Council of Anglican-Episcopal Churches in Germany (CAECG), and the Anglican-Lutheran Society. The parish, which marked 400 years last year with an active programme of celebration, now begins some major external works on the building itself, involving painting, new lighting and other improvements which will make our Church much more visible and identifiable in this great city. The website of St Thomas Becket is here.