Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby presenting at the St Augustine's 2023 Residential Week.

Spring is in the air as we celebrate St Augustine’s Day and other May events

Does anyone else feel like spring has arrived in full, miraculous force in the last week or two?

The flowers are blooming, the birds are singing, and the air is full of the promise of the season. We hope you enjoyed a spiritually rejuvenating Easter, and that you’re able to join us in looking ahead with renewed energy to the days ahead.

It’s certainly been an exciting month so far, with many people tuning in to watch the coronation of King Charles III. St Augustine’s has also been blessed with some exciting May-time tidings, which you can read all about below.

From upcoming celebrations to thrilling historical re-discoveries, it’s all here in this overview of the College’s May newsletter.

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Celebrate St Augustine’s Day with a special talk from revered theologian David Ford

Every year, the College holds a special fundraising event to celebrate all things St Augustine’s.

This year’s St Augustine’s Day is nearly upon us, but you can still join us this Friday (19th May) in the grounds of Malling Abbey for a very special evening of food, theology, and fun.

We’re very excited to welcome esteemed theologian and Anglican scholar, Professor David F. Ford to this year’s event. Guests will be treated to a special lecture by Professor Ford on the Gospel of John, based on the professor’s own recently published and much-praised commentary.

Tickets are still available for this afternoon affair, beginning at 4:30pm with an afternoon tea upon arrival and a buffet reception at 6:00pm.

This is a fundraising event, which means all financial contributions will go towards the college’s Tattersall Bursary Fund. By attending, you’ll be supporting students who might not otherwise be able to study theology due to financial barriers.

The event at a glance:

  • When: Friday 19th May 2023, 4:30pm onwards
  • Where: Malling Abbey, West Malling campus

Interested in studying the Certificate theology course?

If you’ve been thinking about studying theology at university-level, but don’t feel quite ready for or interested in a full degree programme, you need to come along to one of our online Q&A events.

These free online sessions gives you the opportunity to find out more about studying the Certificate of Higher education in Theology, Ministry and Mission. The hour-long online Q&A sessions give you the chance to chat with staff, find out about the course, and ask any questions you might have.

Interested in studying the course completely online? We now offer an online-only version of the Certificate theology course which will be covered during these Q&A sessions.

Upcoming Q&A events:

Archbishop of Canterbury speaks at St Augustine’s Residential Week

Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby stands opposite a guest of the event and consider's the man's question, at the St Augustine's 2023 Residential Week.

Those who attended this year’s Residential Week celebrations back in April were treated to a lecture and Q&A forum with a very special guest; the Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby.

Joining us after a meeting with the Prime Minister, the archbishop kindly made time in his busy schedule to spend time with staff, students and guests. No doubt it helped matters that the annual event is held on the archbishop’s “home turf”, in the precincts of Canterbury Cathedral!

Speaking on the topic of our shared community of Communion, the archbishop dove into a number of important and poignant topics. Not only did he share some of his own insights, he also invited questions from the audience which prompted some rich discussion.

Bringing history to life and celebrating long-lost icons

It’s been an exciting month for fans of history and archaeological discovery.

The college was treated to wonderful lecture from Rev Dr Lesley Hardy on the life (and surprisingly recent afterlife) of Anglo-Saxon saint, Eanswythe. After establishing one the first monasteries founded by a woman, this enigmatic young princess was revered as a patron saint by the people of Folkestone, in Kent

In a fascinating overview of Eanswythe life and legacy, Dr Hardy regaled attendees with a story that spanned centuries – from lost reliquaries to surprising scientific discoveries. Miss the lecture? Read all about the search for Eanswythe.

And if that wasn’t enough, our very own Chaplain, Rev Harriet Johnson shared a video update on the College’s new icon project. Reporting from St Augustine’s Abbey in Canterbury, Harriet explains how the project is progressing, spotlighting the legacy of St Hadrian and what the new icon will represent.

Celebrating the complete Easter People audio retreat – and the man behind it

With the final episode of Easter People audio retreat now available, there’s no better time to listen back to the full four-episode series celebrating the people of Easter.

If you’re already a fan of St Augustine’s popular audio retreats, you will no doubt be familiar with the voice of Chris Chapman. You can now learn more about Chris, who is also the College’s Christian Spirituality tutor, in our latest story feature.

Read about Chris’ approach to theology, learning, and life in general. We’re only sorry we don’t have an audio version of the piece so listeners might enjoy it in Chris’ own soothing tones.

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We hope you enjoyed this month’s round-up of the May newsletter. If you’d like to get the newsletter direct to your inbox, you can sign up to subscribe to our mailing list.


In the meantime, have a wonderful, rejuvenating May and we’ll be back with more College news, upcoming events, and exciting tidings next month.