Far from looking forward to a peaceful retirement – one county vicar is moving to Poland so he can carry on working past his 70th birthday.
Rev David Arthur Victor Brown who has been Vicar of Barnacre, Calder Vale and Scorton for the last eight years, told surprised parishioners on Sunday that he is preparing to take on a new challenge.
From October 1, he will become the new chaplain of the Anglican church in Warsaw in Poland.
David and his wife Hanna, who comes from Gdansk in Poland and is a Dentist at a practice in Garstang, have been well-respected and much loved members of the local community.
Speaking after his announcement, David said: “I will be 70 on September 17 this year.
“While leaving Garstang and district will be a great wrench, it means that I will be able to continue in ministry for some years to come.
“My wife Hanna will be commuting on a regular basis to fulfil her contract here in Garstang until, and possibly beyond, next March.”
He added: “The challenge to become priest in charge of a small but long established Anglican Church in Warsaw is one I have accepted with joy, but also some fear and trepidation.
“In my many years as hospital chaplain in Lancaster and district and for the last eight years in Barnacre, Scorton and Calder Vale, I have been privileged to minister, serve, work with and learn from so many of you.
“You have taught me so much that I will carry with me into my new sphere of ministry in Poland.”
The new posting is known as a “non stipendiary/ house for duty” position and will see the couple provided with a church house but David will not get a salary. Dioceses in England insist stipendiary clergy retire at 70.
David’s last service will be a combined Parish Eucharist for the three churches, which will be in Barnacre Church on Sunday September 21 at 11am.
The service will be followed by refreshments in the newly extended and refurbished village hall, neighbouring the church. David and Hanna will provide the wine and the main course and it is hoped parishioners will bring the puddings as a Jacob’s Join.