News from the Rectory regarding Area Dean Role
The Rector writes…
“I have been greatly privileged to serve as Area Dean of Lagan for almost fifteen years. I was appointed by Bishop Harold a few months after coming to St. Columba’s and succeeded Canon Walter Laverty who was Rural Dean for many years. I have presided over Vacancies in each of the parishes in the Area Deanery throughout that time and have been fortunate to share in their respective ministries. This has been of immense benefit to both me and also St. Columba’s. The experiences which I have gained over these years as Area Dean have been helpful to me in my ministry in St. Columba’s.
As there are currently no Parish Vacancies in the Area Deanery, I indicated to Bishop David some time ago that this would be a timely opportunity for him to appoint my successor. Bishop David and the Area Deanery Clergy came to St. Columba’s on Tuesday 28th February for a service of Holy Communion followed by refreshments kindly hosted by Dr Elizabeth Leonard.
I am grateful for the trust placed in me by Bishop Harold and in more recent years by Bishop David, together with the Select Vestries and parishioners in each of the parishes in the Lagan Area Deanery.
I have greatly valued this opportunity to serve in the wider diocese over many years.”

Bishop David paid a warm and wholesome tribute to the Rector for all his conscientious work as Area Dean, commenting that he was the longest serving Area Dean in the Diocese! He appointed the Rector of Willowfield Parish Church, The Revd Clive Atkinson as his successor.

We take this opportunity to thank our Rector for all of his dedicated work and support to our local parishes in the Lagan area. This is the largest Area Deanery in the Diocese, and he has given guidance and advice to many people during his tenure. It is wonderful for him to ‘hand over the reins’ when the area is in such a fantastic position, and we wish his successor The Revd Clive Atkinson every best wish as he begins his new role as Area Dean. It has been a wonderful privilege for St Columba’s to be recognised in this way.