February 21 - In the wake of the tragic death of the Revd John Suddards in Thornbury last week, the diocese has taken steps to reassure and remind clergy and parishes of the security system provision for clergy houses â€“ including personal security and grants for new security installations and upgrades.
There will inevitably be a full story to emerge, but some comfort will be taken this week from the fact that the main police suspect has been apprehended. St Maryâ€™s Church in Thornbury held a late-night vigil for Revd John on Monday night.
The following is a reminder about security system provision for clergy houses: As a diocese we support the 1998 report of the Advisory Board of Ministry and the Church Commissioners regarding clergy security. Security of the house is only part of the answer. An awareness of â€˜good practiceâ€™ with regard to answering the door and remembering to lock all windows and doors when leaving the house - and setting the alarm if you have one â€“ is just as important.
The diocese offers support for purchasing or upgrading security systems for clergy houses and a message has been sent to all occupants to remind them of what is available.