Getting ready for Lent

Lent begins this year on Ash Wednesday, 14th February, and lasts for 40 days until Easter. Lent began in the early church as 40 days of preparation time for new Christians to prepare for baptism at Easter. 

Plough Wednesday: a rural adventure

A couple of weeks ago I had my first experience of “Plough Wednesday”: an annual opportunity to explore rural life and ministry across the Diocese of Oxford.

Called to be Christ-like

An update on our common vision process Over a hundred people from across the diocese came together on Saturday 20th January to reflect on progress so far in our common vision process. We gathered as lay chairs, area deans, members of Bishop’s…

Radio 4 Thought for the Day

Bishop Steven gave his Thought for the Day on Saturday 30th December 2017 during a programme edited by Artificial Intelligence (AI). “How are you feeling?” “What’s your energy like today?” Imagine being asked the same questions…

Joy to the World 

A very happy Christmas. One of the best carol services I took part in last week was in prison. There were about 100 prisoners and staff and volunteers gathered for the service. The very ordinary dining room was turned into a chapel. The music…

A very short history of catechesis

It has long been my conviction that the renewal and reform most needed in the life of the Church of England and the Church in the United Kingdom is the renewal of catechesis: laying the good foundations of faith in the lives of enquirers and new Christians.

The importance of education

The Bishop of Oxford, the Rt Revd Steven Croft, spoke in the House of Lords today on the role of education in building a flourishing and skilled society. The debate was proposed by the Lord Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby. --- "My…

Seven reasons to say the Lord’s Prayer each day

Most of us learn the Lord’s Prayer as children. But then we forget what it means. Over the last few weeks, I have found myself teaching the Lord’s Prayer to several different congregations – over 2000 people in all, including many young people.

Artificial Intelligence: the eight key issues

My top eight issues in AI and the deep theological questions they raise...

Mental health and the Churches

“Why are you so full of heaviness O my soul And why are you so disquieted within me?” The psalmist asks the same penetrating, painful and honest question three times in Psalms 42 and 43. The Psalms testify here and elsewhere that anguish…

Towards a Common VIsion

At each Deanery day I have given an address attempting to answer the question of vision and future direction for the diocese.  This has evolved and changed significantly over the last five months.  Some of the early content was very different indeed.  We recorded the Aylesbury gathering on 26th April and the recording is available here.  You may want to listen to it as part of your preparation (particularly if you have not yet been to a deanery day or yours was one of the early meetings).