Next Archdeacon of Leicester announced

The Church of England’s next Archdeacon of Leicester has been named as the Revd Canon Richard Worsfold, currently Area Dean for Leicester and Vicar of the city’s Church of the Martyrs.


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Our current Archdeacon, Tim Stratford, leaves to become the Dean of Chester in September. Richard will finish at Martyrs in October, taking up the reins as Archdeacon in November.


Bishop of Leicester, Martyn Snow, said: “I am so pleased that Richard has agreed to become Archdeacon of Leicester. His knowledge of the city and county, having worked in both urban and rural parishes, will be invaluable to us as we seek to follow up on the Rural Commission and implement new strategies around Resourcing Churches. He brings a deep commitment to working across cultures and working with those on the edge of society. I greatly look forward to working with him more closely.”


Richard’s main hope is that he will help support both lay and ordained ministers in the Church as well as the hundreds of volunteers who keep churches going whether looking after the buildings or helping to run community activities and church services.


“I want to be a good support for lay and ordained people, recognising the fast-changing context of ministry and daily Christian living”, Richard said.


He is a passionate supporter of the Diocese of Leicester’s strategy Shaped by God and said “I am excited to serve in a Diocese with a strategic focus of growing increasing numbers of committed followers of Jesus balanced with our loving service for the community and world around us.



Richard also speaks of his commitment to serving churches:

“I hope that my experience in ministry over the past 23 years, the things that have gone well and the things that have gone not so well, can help me to be a good support and a good listener. I want to hear about the pressures faced by those shouldering the responsibility for keeping the show on the road in our parish churches.


“I recognise the challenges of that day-to-day work and, alongside the Bishop’s Leadership Team and the Diocesan support staff, will look to build upon the ways in which we already serve the parishes, chaplaincies and church schools, to work as efficiently and as smartly as we possibly can.


“I also hope to be part of helping to tell the stories of good news from our churches; sharing those stories, encouraging growth where it is happening and helping parishes learn from each other about how best to respond to the challenges of being church and sharing the love of Jesus in the 21st Century.


“We are a Diocese in which there is much change that is happening. We are trying to connect with our communities in new ways, so our ministry faces many pressures and competing expectations and I want us as Diocese to support churches in meeting those.


“Having enjoyed ministry in suburban and semi-rural parishes and more recently in Leicester, I can say we have a unique county and city here. In the West End of the city I have lived in the most diverse part of the UK where we are growing the church across different cultural communities but, as a mostly rural Diocese with urban heartlands, we are not just One Leicester but One Leicester-shire, and we need each other, right across both the city and county.”


Richard has been in ordained ministry for 23 years, having first trained and worked as a commercial law solicitor and serving as a church warden in a small innercity church in London.


After ordination he served as a curate in Countesthorpe and team rector in Ratby, Groby and Newtown Linford before serving in the city.


Richard said: “I am very sad to be leaving the Church of the Martyrs at a time when there is so much to celebrate, so much good that is happening. I have wrestled with the growing sense that this is God’s will and simply have to trust that God has good plans for us individually and collectively, wherever God calls us to serve.”


Details of Richard’s installation service as Archdeacon of Leicester will be announced later in the summer.

First published on: 1st August 2019
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