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After a decade as Parish Priest at Molong, near Orange in the Central West of NSW, Ben Edwards will be inducted as Rector of St Paul’s, Manuka, on 15 December. Ben is married to Kate and they have two small children, Timmy (8) and Claire (5).

Ben was ordained in All Saints’ Cathedral, Bathurst, in 2004. He has held appointments in urban, regional and rural parishes. His academic background includes degrees in History, Theology and Law. His doctoral research was on Protestant-Catholic sectarianism and ecumenism. His more recent research interests have been in the area of the interplay between legal and church history.

Ben reflects that as a ‘cradle Anglican’, he was evangelised by and through the Prayer Book and he deeply values the Anglican heritage and tradition of worship, theology and spirituality which has formed him. Liturgical worship lies at the heart of his ministry and spirituality. He describes his approach to ministry as ‘very conventional’: focused on gathering and leading the worshipping community, proclaiming the Gospel, and providing pastoral care. He sees that the Church has a calling to be a place of community and hospitality, where people encounter the reality of God through the mystery of the sacraments and the proclamation and ministry of the Gospel, and where the faithful are to be encouraged to discover and equipped to exercise their baptismal gifts.

Ben and his family have been living on their property outside of Orange, so it will be a great novelty for the children to have neighbours, not to mention shops and other facilities on their doorstep in Manuka, and something of an adjustment for Penny, their border collie. Kate, who has been a Latin teacher at Kinross Wolaroi School, will be undertaking full-time doctoral research in Classics pedagogy and curriculum issues.

While the family feels no small degree of sadness to be leaving the country and the loving congregation at St John’s, Molong, they are also looking forward to the new opportunities and experiences as they begin a new chapter in Canberra.

by Reverend Dr Ben Edwards