Bishop slams 'scourge' of poverty

The church should help eradicate the "scourge" of society that is poverty, a new church bishop has said.

T he Right Reverend Paul Butler was enthroned in a service at Durham Cathedral at which he was formally welcomed into his new role.

Having been formally welcomed into the cathedral, he was enthroned before giving a sermon to an audience including leaders from other faiths, civic dignitaries and overseas visitors.

Bishop Paul said: "Poverty, economic, social and spiritual, is a scourge, whether it is here in the north east, or in Lesotho, Burundi or Romania. It has to be confronted and tackled. But this has to be done by all sectors of society working together.

"The church has a key part to play in this and we must play it to the full.

"The church as agent of God's Kingdom should be growing - growing in our love for God, his world, his people. A healthily growing church will be a church that engages with its local community, seeking its welfare.

"We should expect growth. We do not plant seeds without expecting growth to happen. We know that not every seed will germinate and that some will be more fruitful than others, but we expect growth. We know, too, this happens with proper care and nurture; if we want good growth then appropriate nurture is essential."

After the service, the Bishop stood at the main door to the cathedral and blessed the city of Durham and the north east.

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