Post-vacancy listening session - Rotherham

15th March 2018

All interested parties are invited to participate in one of three planned listening sessions, which have been designed specifically to allow people across the Diocese, clergy and lay, to give voice to their personal experience of the nomination and subsequent withdrawal of Bishop Philip North to the See of Sheffield. We are aware that in many cases our fellow disciples are still feeling some strong but unresolved emotions – distress, anger, confusion, hurt, frustration or disappointment. We want to give you the opportunity to speak directly to us, but also to other members of our Diocesan community.

We do not wish this process to reopen old wounds nor to create further conflict. We are seeking to create a ‘safe enough’ space to make straight talking and attentive listening possible. Between us, as your two bishops, we will host each of the three sessions. We hope both to be present on each occasion. We will be assisted by two experienced facilitators, Sarah Hills and Stephen Ruttle. Their task will be to help us all to share honestly, to listen humbly and to respect one another across our differences. They will introduce us to the ground rules (The St Michael’s House Protocols) that will apply to each session, which embody agreements that we will all be asked to make with each other with regard to the way we will speak and listen to one another, and with regard to what we will and will not report afterwards about this process.

The three listening sessions are all scheduled between now and Easter, as follows:

  • Tuesday, 6 March 2018: 19.00 – 21.00 at Doncaster College and University Centre (The Hub, Chappell Drive, Doncaster, DN1 2RF)
  • Thursday, 15 March 2018: 19.00 – 21.00 in Rotherham (venue now confirmed as St Mary’s Greasbrough Church Street, Greasbrough, Rotherham, S61 4DX).
  • Sunday, 25 March 2018: 14.00 – 16.00 at Owlerton St John the Baptist (Penistone Road, Sheffield, S6 2FU)

You are welcome to attend the session closest to you or the one most convenient for you. If you would like to take up this opportunity, please register your interest by Friday, 23rd February 2018 using the Eventbrite booking system.

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If you wish to attend one of these events, but do not wish to use Eventbrite please contact Lisa Gibbons at

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