You are here28th July 2019

28th July 2019

By Ian Cardinal - Posted on 24 July 2019

The Parish Churches of

St Michael & St Wulfad, Stone, with

St Saviour Aston by Stone


Bishop Geoff to retire


The Bishop of Stafford, the Right Revd Geoff Annas, has announced that he is to retire from his role at the end of November.

Bishop Geoff and his wife Ann came to the Diocese of Lichfield in 2010 to join the episcopal team led by the Bishop of Lichfield. As Area Bishop of Stafford, he has overseen a region that includes Stoke-on-Trent, Stafford, Newcastle-under-Lyme, Burton-on-Trent and many rural communities across North Staffordshire. He will leave shortly before his 66th birthday and he and Ann will return to live in Southampton, where he previously served, close to their family.

Bishop Geoff said: “We will be leaving many friends but taking with us happy memories of this special part of Britain that was previously unknown to us. The creativity and warmth of the people of North Staffordshire and the glorious and beautiful countryside make it a most attractive place to live and we are only sorry that bishops are expected to move away from the area and diocese they have served!

“When we came to the diocese, it was making plans until 2020. Now, we are starting a new Direction of Travel which looks way beyond then and, as I shall be 66 at the end of November it seems a really good time to move and allow a new bishop to work with Bishops Michael, Clive and Sarah in guiding the diocese in its exciting journey.

“I do not regard myself as ‘retiring’ but simply joining that magnificent band of clergy and lay ministers who work their socks off but for no financial payment and without whom the Church of England as we know it would collapse!”

The Bishop of Lichfield, the Right Revd Dr Michael Ipgrave, said: “Bishop Geoff has served the communities and churches of North Staffordshire faithfully for almost a decade – making him one of the longest serving Bishops of Stafford. I will be very sad to see Ann and Geoff leave but I am pleased that they will now be closer to family and have more time to spend with them.”

By way of farewell to Bishop Geoff and Ann, Bishop Michael will lead a service of celebration of the good things happening in Church of England churches and the communities they serve across North Staffordshire in Stoke Minster on Sunday 24 November at 4pm. All are welcome.


Bishop Geoff will also be with us that day, Stir up Sunday, when we make our annual Church Christmas puddings at 10.45am


Hymns for today

                        Aston                          Stone Civic service               

            432                              427

            316                              565

                        26                                425

325/120                       518

188                              National Anthem


Please pray for the sick in the benefice:

Mary Townsend, Noelle Emery,  Dianne Harvey, Elsie Richardson, Roy & Barbara Ball, Vera Tomkinson, Neil & Pat Wynne, Gary Kelsall,

Emily Franks, John Richardson, Annette McMullen, Peter Bowler,   

Howard Boswell, Catherine Ritchie, Sarah Taylor, Graham Baker,

Jackie Finnemore,  James Astle, Miles Brain, Joan Lazonby,  John & Ann Shuttleworth,  Evelyn Cotterill, Margaret Wright, Gren Deakin, Margaret Bott


And for the departed:

Liz Osborne, John Wood, Mary Wesson, Michael Tranmer, Doreen Pearson, Gillian Bond and Dorothy Read

Remembering their families and friends at this time


This week:

Thursday 1st Aug  10.30am Holy Communion – St M&W


LADIES OUTINGBook your places for Afternoon Tea at Aston Marina on Wednesday 18th September at 3.30pm. See Steph (from 21st July) – cost £16.


A BIG THANK YOUto the ladies from the Drop Inn Café for their stalwart service throughout the year. The café is now closed until September, but the job they do in supporting us is legendary!