THE new Anglican bishop of Bendigo says there is plenty to look forward to in the role, but first order of business will be learning about his new surrounds.
Bishop Matt Brain was on Sunday installed as the 10th Anglican Bishop of Bendigo at a service at St Paul’s Cathedral.
The service was attended by clergy and parishioners of the diocese along with a number of Anglican bishops from across Australia and the Archbishop Philip Freier.
Bishop Brain fills the role vacated by Andrew Curnow AM, who retired in December last year.
He and his young family moved from Canberra early this year to settle in to Bendigo.
“We’ve really enjoyed Bendigo, there is obviously a lot of history here but it is still a thriving place,” he said.
The 42-year-old was previously an Assistant Bishop in the Diocese of Canberra-Goulburn from 2015.
Before that he worked in the far north of Western Australia and Perth, so says he has seen all kinds of situations.
That will come in handy, with the Anglican diocese area covering from the Macedon Ranges in the south to Mildura in the north.
“He is also aware of the challenges that face the church, especially from an image perspective, but says that he aims to change that perception.
“A lot of the things are common to all areas, it’s no secret that the church is at the position of needing to re-present itself to the community at large,” he said.
“We need to be able to clearly but winsomely say what the church has to offer to folk and part of that is winning back trust.
“I find especially the further west you go with the amount of people that have left those areas, that it is more difficult.
“Those people just want to know whether we are there for them and interested in their issues, and the answer is always yes, absolutely.”