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Who We Are

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The Centre for Church Planting and Church Growth supports the work of the Bishop of Islington, one of the suffragan bishops of the London Diocese. Bishop Ric was consecrated in September 2015 to support the London Diocesan goal of creating New Worshipping Communities and is available to the National Church to support church planting.
His team, based at St Edmund the King in London, help to run church planting training courses and church growth learning communities, to equip church planters through individual consultations, and to develop resources for the wider church.

Team

Ric Thorpe

Ric Thorpe

As Bishop of Islington, Ric is responsible for the London Diocese’s goal of creating 100 New Worshipping Communities by 2020 and is also working nationally to support Dioceses to plant new churches. Before being appointed to Islington, Bishop Ric was the Bishop of London’s Adviser for Church Planting and the Rector of St Paul’s Shadwell. He is married to Louie and they have three children.

H Miller

H Miller

H Miller is the Head of Development for Church Planting and Growth, working closely with teams in the development stage, overseeing the coaching programme and grant funding. He also serves as Interim Minister at St. Barnabas Kensington. Prior to joining us he worked extensively with church planting in North America. He is married to Shelly and they have two children.

Andrea Bleakley

Andrea Bleakley

PA to the Bishop of Islington, Andrea looks after the diary, meetings, finance and administration for Ric and the Church Planting and Growth team.

Mark Bishop

Mark Bishop

Mark is an Ordained Pioneer Minister. He planted and continues to lead Missional Community in Acton Vale, a council estate in West London. He also works closely with the Lee Abbey Movement and Tierra Neuva Europe. As an Islington Associate, Mark helps support the burgeoning network of missional communities springing up across London and beyond.

Phil Hoyle

Phil Hoyle

Rev. Phil Hoyle is a pioneer priest and member of the 'Room' Community in Shepherds Bush. As an Islington Associate, Phil helps support the burgeoning network of missional communities springing up across London and beyond.

Alex Cameron

Alex Cameron

As Church Planting Intern, Alex looks after the day-to-day running of the Church Planting Courses and the Church Growth Learning Communities. She lives as part of the CHIPS missional community in Brixton.

Lawrence Olsworth-Peter

Lawrence Olsworth-Peter

As Church Planting Intern responsible for Communications, Lawrence develops visual and written resources. He is passionate about church planting, particularly using the arts to reach people with the good news of Jesus Christ in fresh ways. In his other life he works as an operatic tenor.

Islington Associates

John Valentine

John Valentine

John Valentine is married to Catherine, and they have two children. John is the Rector of St George's Holborn, a church plant from Holy Trinity Brompton. St Georges have planted two further churches (in partnership with others) in the last 10 years. John has written the book, 'Follow Me', on Christian discipleship.

Helen Shannon

Helen Shannon

In 2010 Helen & her team planted an estates church where she lives in North London called church@five, which she still leads today. She also is one of the founding trustees & Projects Director for Hope North London & is an Associate Minister at St Barnabas North London. Her vision is for there to be a worshipping community on every estate in London. Helen is married to Mark and they have 6 kids.