Church of England Diocese of Norwich Barton Turf

Deanery Digest - a letter from the Rural Dean

Dear Deanery Synod members,

I wanted to be in touch as we haven’t been able to meet this year.

With promises of a vaccine on the horizon, I hope we might be able to meet as a deanery in person once the vaccine is rolled out and the restrictions lift.

My experience of Zoom meetings in our rural areas has been mixed, and in the interests of sharing together, I would prefer that we meet in person rather than on Zoom, although this has played a really useful means of communication for smaller gatherings this year in ways we couldn’t have foreseen.

This year has been tremendously difficult for many, and for those who have lost loved ones, my love and prayers are with you.

My main reason for writing is to thank you for all you have done and given to serving Christ in our Deanery during this year.

There have been many examples of acts of community service and meeting need in our communities in both an organised way and through quiet acts of kindness - ringing those on their own for a chat, and looking out for one another.

Your response to the constant changes in church life and the disappointment of not meeting together at Easter for worship in person, has been stoic and dignified, and it has been wonderful to see the ways people have found to worship together by phone, on line and through printed material.

And I also wanted to thank you for your generosity in supporting our churches financially during this year. I am aware that due to the cancellation of fundraising events and usual church activities, many have given sacrificially to enable the mission and ministry of the church to continue.

I am grateful for your continued support in what has been a difficult year.

For those parishes in vacancy, you will know that I am continuing to push for movement forward, and I am especially grateful to their Ministry Teams and Churchwardens for their energy, commitment and patience during this time while the Diocese considers the practical outworking of the Clergy Deployment Review. I am in touch with many of you regularly, but please don’t hesitate to make contact if you need at any time.

I would also like to thank my clergy colleagues for all their hard work under tremendous stress this year has brought. Keeping up with the latest regulations and holding the responsibility for safety in our churches has been a heavy burden to carry. Please do support, encourage and pray for them.

There is no Deanery Digest for this quarter, as it is impossible to predict so far ahead what will be possible in the coming weeks and months. I have however attached the deanery Prayer Diary to this letter, and would encourage you please to keep one another in your prayers.

May God bless you and keep you safe and well.


Revd Canon Catherine Dobson.

Rural Dean, St Benets at Waxham & Tunstead.

SeptJ_OctJ_Nov_2020, PDF