Benedictine and Diocesan Structure

Geography

Our parish falls within the Diocese of East Anglia and extends from Haddiscoe in the north to Brampton in the south, and from Barnby in the east to Kirby Cane in the west.

Responsibilities to Downside Abbey

The following  page briefly describes the history of our parish and it is clear we have responsibilities to the Abbot of the Benedictines of Downside – as the Order owns the grounds on which the church, school and presbytery are built.

Our Priest is a member of the Downside community which takes responsibility for the formation and continuing spiritual development of their priests, as well as for their care on retirement.

The Benedictine web site is at http://www.downside.co.uk/benedictine-monastery/

Diocesan Authority

Our Bishop, Right Reverend Alan Hopes, BD, AKC, lives at The White House, Poringland, where the Diocesan offices are also located.  Our cathedral is St John the Baptist on Norwich.

The Diocesan web site is at http://www.rcdea.org.uk

Church law gives the Bishop authority over the pastoral activities we undertake, as well as responsibility for the additional services provided on a Diocesan level – education being the most important.

As a parish, we may need to ask the Diocese to supply our priests if Downside has a shortage, as happened between 1993 and 2003.  And indeed, our Deacons are both Diocesan appointments.

Financial Implications

Our principal financial responsibility to the Abbot of Downside is to maintain the buildings and grounds to an appropriate standard.  As he is our “landlord”, we are also required to seek his approval for any alterations or additions we may wish to make to the properties.

We are also subject to various Diocesan levies for education and central activities and charitable works.  In addition, our rota of Second Collections is laid down by the Bishop.  The past, current and potential need for Diocesan clergy, also makes us liable for certain levies relating to their formation and care.