Lancashire’s new bishop, Julian Henderson, has sent greetings to the region after being consecrated in a service at York Minster led by the Archbishop of York, Dr John Sentamu.
The two-hour service was attended by around 1,500 people, many of them from the Blackburn Diocese.
As the Archbishop stood with Bishop Julian at a windy West Door at the conclusion of proceedings he said: “Where I come from all of nature’s glory is a blessing! This wind is like the Holy Spirit coming... as Bishop Julian is being sent out today to win hearts for Jesus.
“It is great to welcome Bishop Julian as Lancashire’s next Bishop. He will be a great blessing to the Diocese of Blackburn – join me in praying for his ministry there.”
Julian Henderson added: “I want to thank all those who came to be present at my Consecration, and all those who have remembered me and Heather in their prayers.
“It was an awe-inspiring occasion as bishops from around the church joined the Archbishop of York in laying hands on me and everyone prayed for the gift of the Holy Spirit to equip me to fulfil this role to the glory of God.
“Now I commit myself, with all the strength He gives me, to make the Good News about Jesus Christ more widely known in Lancashire, to be a faithful pastor to the people of the diocese and to become a useful member of the existing diocesan team.”
Clergy and parishioners from across Lancashire made the journey to York Minster in the company of other senior clerics from across the UK and visiting international dignitaries. Also attending were Bishop Julian’s family and friends and representatives from all of his previous ministries, including from his time as a parish priest and more recently as Archdeacon of Dorking.
Local schoolchildren from the Diocese also attended, from St Stephens in Tockholes, St Wildred’s in Blackburn and Archbishop Temple in Preston.
The Bishop’s official service of Inauguration in Lancashire takes place this Saturday, October 19th, at Blackburn Cathedral and will be led by the Dean of Blackburn.
To find out more about the new Bishop, clergy, parishioners and everyone else living in Lancashire can now log on to a video interview on YouTube in which Julian Henderson chats to Joe Wilson from BBC Radio Lancashire. The video is available on the new Blackburn Diocese YouTube channel, launched to coincide with Bishop Julian’s arrival.