Bishop Michael took part on 28 September 2017 in a Round Table gathering in the buffer zone of divided Cyprus to discuss the responsibilities and contributions that religions can or should make to safeguarding and promoting human rights.  Representatives  not just of varying Christian traditions but also of other major world faiths including Muslims, Buddhists, and Baha’is met under the auspices of the Religious Track of the Cyprus Peace Process.

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Chaplain General’s Visit Hits the Heights at St George’s

L to R – The Revd Dr David Coulter, Chaplain General to the Forces, Bishop Michael and Mrs Julia Lewis, Major General James Illingworth, Commander British Forces Cyprus, and Mr Matthew Kidd, British High Commissioner

In the church which Bishop Michael described as ‘the highest in my Diocese’ a special gathering took place on October 1st. St George’s in the Forest, 6000 feet above sea level, hosted a celebration of Evensong according to the 1662 Book of Common Prayer to mark the visit of the Chaplain General to the Forces, the Revd Dr David Coulter. The service was attended by the Commander of British Forces on the Island, Major General James Illingworth and the British High Commissioner, Mr Matthew Kidd, as well as by clergy with a link to Forces Chaplaincy on the Island, and their families. In a packed church, hymns were accompanied by a small brass ensemble, to great effect, and the service was led by Padre Peter King; the Introduction, Invitation, Absolution and Blessing being contributed by the Bishop.

In his sermon, Dr Coulter observed the five hundredth anniversary of the reformation, and the centenary of the Battle of Passchendaele. Noting the Biblical imperative to speak a public word both to church and nation, he sketched the challenges facing those who today would interpret the word of God in the public domain. The Bishop described the event as “a great occasion,” and a wonderful opportunity to showcase one of the Diocese’s most beautiful churches, after recent upgrading work there.

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