On the 29th May, Joe Moffatt announced his news of moving on from St Mary with St Alban to a new role at All Saints, Kingston. Whilst I am confident you will all join me in wishing Joe all the very best, I am sure many of you will be reflecting on what Joe's departure means for us all. As a parish we will enter an interregnum which is the term used in the Anglican
Communion to describe the period before a new parish priest is appointed to fill a vacancy.

First and foremost, we are blessed with a strong clergy team, so unlike many other parishes going through an interregnum, we won’t need to organise visiting clergy each week. This leaves us able to maintain our regular pattern of worship, mission, and pastoral care.

During an interregnum, the administration of the parish is the responsibility of the churchwardens. This responsibility begins from the date of resignation, which is usually the date of induction in a new parish of the incumbent. The Churchwardens are the Bishop’s officers in the parish during a vacancy. On a practical level, there are several important things that will need to happen including:

  • The Churchwardens to meet with the Archdeacon who will confirm the process for the interregnum and selecting a new incumbent.
  • The Archdeacon will then set a date and attend a special Preliminary Vacancy Meeting with the PCC to explain what needs to happen.
  • After which, two keys tasks that will need to be fulfilled are:
    • A Parish Profile describing the conditions, needs and traditions of the parish will need to be written by an elected group.
    • Two parish representatives will need to be elected by the PCC,

These are indeed the initial practicalities but I am also mindful of what this unique period of time affords us as a parish. One dictionary defines interregnum as a pause and as we journey forward, I sincerely hope we can use this time to indeed pause, to listen, to discuss and pray in faith together.

Carla Maroussas, Senior Churchwarden