CAPTION: The new General Synod will meet for the first time in November

Time to “Listen Well… Be Creative and Courageous”: New General Synod Members Elected to Represent Devon

Posted: 14th October, 2021

A new team of people has been elected to represent Devon on the General Synod of the Church of England.

The new lay members are: Luke Appleton, Simon Friend, Tim Hamilton and Georgia Willis.

The new clergy members are: Rev’d Prebendary Rosie Austin, Canon Morwenna Ludlow, the Venerable Douglas Dettmer (Archdeacon of Totnes), Rev’d Karl Freeman and Rev’d Graham Hamilton.

They were elected by deanery synod members from across the Diocese of Exeter.

Rev’d Preb Rosie Austin says she wants people to be able to contact her with their ideas

Commenting on her election, Rev’d Austin, Team Rector of the Shirwell Mission Community, said “I am both excited and a little daunted about what is ahead.

There are some challenges facing us in the Church of England which will require us to listen well to one another, to be creative in our thinking and courageous in addressing change.

I lead small, sometimes fragile, churches – but my focus will also, I hope, be on the big issues that face us… climate change, poverty, migration, discrimination etc.

“Issues which affect us all and which every church should feel able to engage with at some level.”

Rosie added that she wanted people to feel able to get in touch with her “Let me know your thoughts, ideas and concerns.

“I’ll try to be present on twitter (be kind!) and may even attempt a blog.

“Thank you for your support and especially your prayers for all of us who will represent the people of Devon at General Synod.”

The General Synod is the main decision-making body for the Church of England and meets three times a year.

It consists of the House of Laity (non-ordained people), House of Clergy and House of Bishops.

“We are grateful for the hard work, time and energy you will be giving to this important role.” Rev’d Mike Partridge

Annie Jeffries, Chair of the House of Laity for the Diocese of Exeter, said “All the candidates ran a well fought campaign with diligence and good humour.

“On behalf of the laity of the Exeter Diocese I send my best wishes to the new members of General Synod and look forward to working closely with both clergy and lay representatives over the next General Synod term”

Rev’d Mike Partridge, Chair of the House of Clergy for the Diocese of Exeter, added “My thanks to all who stood in the elections. Thank you to all for your commitment to the life of the Church.

“On behalf of the clergy in Exeter Diocese, I know we will pray for you. We are grateful for the hard work, time and energy you will be giving to this important role.”

The nine new representatives will serve a five-year term before elections are held again.

The first meeting of the new General Synod is due to take place from 14 to 16 of November.

You can read the full election results and candidates’ statements here.