Archbishop of York meets Wirral's Ferries Families

THE Archbishop of York met parishioners at a Wirral church during a special visit to the borough.

Dr John Sentamu spoke to members of the Ferries Families at St Peter’s Church in Rock Ferry during the visit, which had been organised by the Diocese of Chester, on Friday afternoon.

The Ferries Families project gives practical help to 120 local people on a range of issues such as self esteem, nutrition and educational support.

Following the visit to St Peter's church, which also included appearances at schools and colleges in Chester, Dr Sentamu told the Globe: “I’m impressed by the commitment of everybody at this church to love, to care and to compassion and the fact that they’ve now got 12 family groups here.

“The fact there is also a youth group that is also helping to bring more young people into the church is also impressive.

“It is a church that is getting out into the community and not simply waiting for people to come in. That is just remarkable and it is the kind of church I want to belong to. Because we live in a global village, when there is some goodness somewhere, we should all rejoice.

“I hope to return to Wirral, provided the Bishops of Birkenhead and Chester invite me back, because I want to see how well churches, local councils and partners do in terms of a project involving health.

“We all know that there is a disparity between one section of society and another in terms of how long we live. In one particular area, people live a few years more than in another area and that has got to be addressed. I strongly believe that if we all pull together to try to lift everybody out of poverty and bad health it will be fantastic.”

The vicar of Rock Ferry, Revd Peter Froggatt said: “Ferries Family Groups have been doing fantastic work for 21 years, and they currently support about 120 families from our locality, many of them living in deprived areas.

“It’s been a very long time, if ever, since St Peter’s has had the Archbishop here, so we’re delighted that he has visited. I think it’s a great encouragement for churches in areas like ours.”