08 August 2011

New USPG leader emphasises Church-to-Church relationships

The new Chief Executive and General Secretary of USPG, Mrs Jeanette O’Neill (right) with the Revd Dr Alan McCormack (left), USPG council member from the Diocese of London and formerly of Trinity College Dublin, and Canon Patrick Comerford (centre) of USPG Ireland (Photograph: Chris Dobson)

The August 2011 edition of the Church Review (Dublin and Glendalough) carries these photographs, captions and report on page 14:

New USPG leader emphasises
Church-to-Church relationships

The new chief executive of USPG (the United Society for the Propagation of the Gospel – Anglicans in World Mission), Mrs Jeanette O’Neill, has spoken of her vision for USPG and her approach to the challenges facing Anglican mission in the 21st century.

Speaking at the USPG conference at the High Leigh Conference Centre near Hoddesdon in Hertfordshire, she said: “We are a Church-to-Church society,” and she emphasised the call to strengthen partner churches in the Anglican Communion.

She emphasised the need to build and develop partnership and relationships, and talked about support for new bishops in their role and in their advocacy. That had to have an impact on the people the church serves at grassroots, through programmes in health, education, capacity building and human rights, she said.

Mrs O’Neill, who brings key experiences to USPG, she spoke of her previous work as Senior Programme Officer with Episcopal Relief and Development in New York, involving partnership in development programmes with the Anglican churches in Africa, particularly in Uganda and Southern Africa.

She has also worked for ten years in Lesotho, where she joined the board of a mission hospital, and watched the HIV/AIDS crisis unfold.

She spoke of how she had been “dazzled” by the way people at conference had a sense of ownership of USPG, in an unbroken chain of links back to the foundation of SPG in 1701.

The new Chief Executive and General Secretary of USPG, Mrs Jeanette O’Neill (centre) with Canon Patrick Comerford and Mrs Linda Chambers de Bruijn of USPG Ireland

Bishop Jo Seoka of Pretoria, an international trustee of USPG, told the conference he was assured that USPG is “in good hands.” Mrs O’Neill succeeds Bishop Michael Doe, who has retired as General Secretary of UISPG and from the board of USPG Ireland.

The conference was attended by almost 200 delegates and participants from over two dozen countries, including a dozen or more bishops, among them three primates, and they came from most Anglican provinces and from every continent where there is an Anglican presence.

Canon Patrick Comerford of USPG with Bishop Mouneer Anis of Cairo at the USPG conference.

Other speakers at the conference included Bishop Trevor Mwamba of Botswana, Bishop Mouneer Anis of Cairo, Bishop Paul S Sarker, Moderator of the Church of Bangladesh, and the Brazilian Primate, Archbishop Maurício Andrade.

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