Bishop Chris Goldsmith to lead Church of England’s Ministry Division


The Church of England is pleased to announce the appointment of The Rt Revd Dr Chris Goldsmith as its new Director of Ministry.

Bishop Chris will play a lead role in supporting the continuing renewal of ministry throughout the Church of England as the Church looks to increase the scale and diversity of those called to both lay and ordained ministries.

Chris is currently The Bishop of St Germans in the Diocese of Truro, a position he has held since 2013. Prior to that he has been a lay leader, a Reader, a minister in secular employment and the vicar of two parishes. Bishop Chris had a 25-year career in research and HR in the energy industry.

Bishop Chris succeeds Dr Mandy Ford, interim Director of Ministry, who has been leading the Division on secondment from the Diocese of Southwark since September 2018.

The Rt Revd Martin Seeley, Bishop of St Edmundsbury and Ipswich and the chair of the Church of England’s Ministry Council, said: “I am thrilled that Bishop Chris is to be the next Director of Ministry. He brings immense experience and wisdom to this key national role and has a strong sense of call to this work. We are going through a major process of change within dioceses as we discern sustainable and fruitful patterns of lay and ordained ministries. That change is reflected in Ministry Council as we work to serve the development of ministry across the Church of England.

“Bishop Chris will bring the gifts, expertise and passion we need to engage faithfully and creatively with what God is calling the Church to be. I very much look forward to us working together.

“I am immensely grateful to Canon Mandy Ford who has served as Interim Director for the past nine months, and who has skilfully enabled us to reach the point where we could appoint to the permanent Director role. She has worked hard to develop the Ministry Division staff team and to engage with dioceses in the challenges we all face. I am grateful to the Diocese of Southwark for enabling Mandy to serve in this way for the benefit of the whole Church.”

The Rt Revd Philip Mounstephen, Bishop of Truro, said: “Bishop Chris has been a tremendous servant of the Diocese of Truro bringing not only rich experience in ordained ministry but also a significant background in his previous career in business. He has made a really significant difference to the shape, feel and culture of ministry in this diocese: a legacy that will stand us in good stead in the future and confirms to me that he’s exactly the right person to take on this new role.”

Of his appointment, Bishop Chris said: “I am profoundly excited by the clear call of God to play my part in the realisation of the bishops’ emerging vision for the ministry of the whole people of God. Right across the Church of England and the many institutions and partner organisations with which we work there is a renewed energy, creativity and momentum around the task of mobilising the whole people of God for the Mission of God.

“Our mission to the nation depends upon women and men from all backgrounds responding to the love and the call of God to play their part in His Mission. Many of our churches feel constrained and inhibited by a scarcity of ministry capacity. Together we need to discover and release the abundant provision of God to his church.”

William Nye, Secretary General to the Archbishops’ Council, said: “I am delighted by the appointment of Bishop Chris Goldsmith to the important role of Director of Ministry. This is a significant time in the development of the ministries needed for the renewal and reform of the Church. Chris brings great skills, experience and understanding to the task of discerning how those ministries need to evolve now and in the future.

“I am also very grateful to Mandy Ford for her excellent service as interim director of ministry in the past year. She has made a huge difference to the work of the division, and hence to the progress of ministry across the Church, and I and all my colleagues have greatly benefited from working with her.”

Bishop Chris will take up his new post in September. Read Bishop Chris’s full quote here.