The Archbishop of York, Dr John Sentamu, praises projects on two-day Bradford visit

Bradford Telegraph and Argus: Archbishop of York Dr John Sentamu at St Stephen's Church, West Bowling, talking to Kelly Varley, who uses the Shine project there to try to find a job Archbishop of York Dr John Sentamu at St Stephen's Church, West Bowling, talking to Kelly Varley, who uses the Shine project there to try to find a job

The Archbishop of York, Dr John Sentamu, today spoke of how impressed he was with projects across Bradford as he began a two-day tour of the diocese.

The second most senior cleric in the Church of England toured churches, learned more about projects helping vulnerable people in the community and went back to visit Bradford Academy, the school he opened five years ago, during the visit.

Speaking to the Telegraph & Argus at Bradford Cathedral, where he met civic and faith leaders at lunchtime, he said: “I would like to wish Bradford a lot of success in every way.”

On his arrival at Bradford Academy this morning, the Archbishop was serenaded by the school choir, who performed a Ugandan greeting song.

He went on to speak to students who have completed his Archbishop's Young Leaders Award, before blessing a ‘Sacred Space’ in its primary school during a service, which was streamed online.

“I feel the school is one of the gems that the Bradford community has got,” he said.

“It should be very proud of everything it has achieved. I could have been there all day.”

The Archbishop’s packed itinerary continued when he visited the Shine community project at St Stephen's Church in West Bowling, which has become the first church in Bradford to be a centre for the Bradford District Credit Union.

He found out more about its job club, a ‘grow and eat’ community garden project and heard how it will open its doors as a homeless shelter for a week in January.

“I strongly believe everyone has a story to tell and the project is trying, through the church, to let people tell their story,” the Archbishop said.

In the afternoon, he visited Jesus Shaped People – a church development programme for churches with social housing estate communities.

Later, he visited a Christian charity in Keighley, The Feast, which works to promote community cohesion between Christian and Muslim young people.

The Archbishop is also speaking at a fundraising event for Bradford charity Inn Churches at Forster’s Bistro in Bradford city centre, before visiting its offices to find out more about its winter project, which provides emergency shelter to homeless and vulnerable people in churches, at The Light Church in Little Germany.

Tomorrow, he is due to visit Austwick CE Primary School.

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