Called to serve

QUEANBEYAN Anglican Church Reverend Ian Palmer has been appointed the tenth bishop of Bathurst by the diocese of Canberra and Goulburn Bishop Stuart Robinson.

Bishop Robinson announced the promotion in a pastoral letter to the congregations of the Queanbeyan and District Anglican Parish last Sunday.

Rev. Palmer said he was looking forward to working in a diocese that covers almost one-third of the state.

"The new role I am taking will involve being with people who have been in difficult times with droughts and so on. Some of these areas have had 15 years of drought. There's also a lot of isolated communities, so going to see them is going to be important. Communication and being with people are going to be crucial."

Currently Rev. Palmer is the team leader of the Anglican Parish which incorporates Queanbeyan, Burra, Michelago and the new suburb of Googong. 

He originally moved to Australia from Northern England in 1998. In 2005 he moved to the Queanbeyan diocese from Newcastle and was inducted at Christ Church on the 30th of October.

Rev. Palmer was appointed an Archdeacon in this diocese by Bishop George Browning.

"I think for me it's an unlooked for opportunity to be able to serve the people of NSW in a way that's holy, creative and empowering," he said.

During his time in Queanbeyan, Rev. Palmer has overseen the merger of the Queanbeyan and South Queanbeyan parishes including the leasing of the Parish Hall site, the Anglican school at Googong, the proposed development of units behind Christ Church for disadvantaged people and his support of outreach in Jerrabomberra and Googong, as well as attending to the spiritual and pastoral needs of his congregation. 

"If I've got two objectives in my work it's to help people to look around their communities with a sense of gratitude, thankfulness and hope and I have a great belief that the most important thing we can do in life is say thank you, to people, to communities, for the beautiful world we live in," he said.

This is the first time in the history of the parish that a minister has directly been appointed to the position of Bishop in a diocese.Rev. Palmer will be one of only 23 Anglican Bishops in Australia and will oversee a rural diocese covering most of western New South Wales. 

Rev. Palmer said "I'll certainly miss Queanbeyan. I love this part of the world very much."

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