Future Channel Islands' Bishop says the Church must engage with young people

  • The Very Reverend Stephen Lake discusses his memories of the Channel Islands and priorities ahead of becoming the new Bishop of Salisbury

The future Bishop of Salisbury says engaging with young people will be his top priority once he takes up the role.

The Very Reverend Stephen Lake will be consecrated a Bishop and meet with the Queen before an official welcome service in June.

The Bishop's position will cover over 500 churches across Dorset and Wiltshire, with the Channel Islands also set to come under his remit once legal processes are completed.

Speaking about his memories of the Channel Islands, the Very Reverend Stephen Lake said: "My parental home was close to Poole Harbour so I could see the ferries going to and from Jersey and Guernsey every single day. It's something that's very familiar to me.

"It's been a difficult time, the relationship between the national Church and the Channel Islands in recent years. I really want to take this opportunity as we all move out of this most difficult period to thoroughly enjoy the relationship. I've already called the involvement of the Channel Islands in the life of the diocese of Salisbury the icing on the cake."

He referenced the way Churches have needed to adapt during the pandemic by streaming services online and how that challenge has also created opportunities to engage with people.

"If you asked me to name my highest priority, it would be our work with children and young people. They've had such a difficult time during the last two years. Their life in many ways restricted at its most freed time, so I really want to make that a very high priority. But also a confident Church, a Church that is good news and being able to move forward together."

The Very Reverend Stephen Lake will become the 79th Bishop of Salisbury, a role that stretches back to the 11th century when St Osmund was first appointed in 1078.