Stretching from the Welsh border to the Peak District, and from north Staffordshire to the Black Country, the Diocese of Lichfield is one of the largest in the Church of England serving just over two million people in 1,744 square miles.
The diocese traces its roots back to AD 656 when the Diocese of Mercia was formed. In AD 664, the first Bishop of Lichfield, St Chad, moved the seat of the diocese to Lichfield from Repton.
The 99th Bishop of Lichfield, the Right Revd Dr Michael Ipgrave, was installed in September 2016. At a special event at Lichfield Cathedral in May 2017, Bishop Michael launched our new direction of travel to 'Come Follow Christ in the footsteps of St Chad' which will be at the heart of the diocese's vision for the next five years.
In Chad’s time the diocese stretched from the Welsh border to the North Sea; and from Northumberland to the Thames. And, despite having shrunk over the years, Lichfield remains one of the largest diocese in the Church of England. It has almost 600 churches, over 420 parishes and over 200 schools in an area which includes Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent, the northern half of Shropshire, Wolverhampton, Walsall, half of Sandwell and even three parishes which straddle the Welsh border.
Bishop Michael is the diocesan bishop, whose seat is at Lichfield Cathedral, while the diocese's three episcopal areas are overseen by the Bishops of Shrewsbury, Stafford and Wolverhampton.
Lichfield Diocese enjoys missionary partnerships with the Dioceses of Kuching, West Malaysia and Singapore, the Diocese of Qu’Appelle in Saskatchewan, Canada; the Diocese of Matlosane in South Africa; and the The Evangelical Lutheran Church of Northern Germany (Nordkirche) in north-east Germany.
The maquette of St Chad seen in the image above has been created by Lichfield Cathedral's Artist in Residence, Peter Walker