Author Archives: Ian Black

About Ian Black

Ian is an Anglican priest and Dean of Newport Cathedral in the Church in Wales. He was previously Vicar of Peterborough and Canon Residentiary of Peterborough Cathedral in the Church of England Diocese of Peterborough. He served as Rural Dean of Peterborough for 5 years. Prior to moving to Peterborough, Ian was in Leeds for 10 years, as Vicar of Whitkirk and as a member of the Chapter of Ripon Cathedral. He has also worked in Kent in Maidstone and as priest-in-charge of a group of parishes in Faversham. He was a Minor Canon of Canterbury Cathedral, a prison chaplain and Assistant Director of Post-Ordination Training for the Diocese of Canterbury in partnership with the Diocese of Rochester. Prior to ordination Ian had a career in tax, both with the Inland Revenue as a PAYE Auditor and a firm of Chartered Accountants as a Tax Accountant. Ian was born and grew up in Stratford-upon-Avon and is a former head chorister at Shakespeare’s Church – Holy Trinity. He studied in Canterbury, Lincoln Theological College and has a Master of Divinity degree from Nottingham University. He is married with two sons. Publications include three books of prayers: Prayers for all occasions (SPCK 2011), Intercessions for Years A, B & C (SPCK 2009) and Intercessions for the Calendar of Saints and Holy Days (SPCK 2005). His most recent book, Follow me: living the sayings of Jesus, was published by Sacristy Press on 1st July 2017. There is also a hymn based on this – Christ the Saviour. Other online writings can be found under the Books & Publications tab above. He has been writing online since the mid 1990s and was a contributing blogger to the ReJesus website. Ian is a keen photographer and these frequently appear in his Facebook and Twitter posts.

Participating in the life and love of the Trinity

Today is Trinity Sunday. It is one of those days when preachers tie themselves up in knots trying to define God and use all sorts of inadequate images of threefold states to try to explain how the Trinity is possible. … Continue reading

Posted in Sermons | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Holy Spirit: Disrupting fountain and well

I don’t know if you watched the service from St Paul’s Cathedral to mark the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee on Friday. A number of things stood out for me. One was the young people challenging the congregation of leaders and diplomats, … Continue reading

Posted in Sermons | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Paschal Candle explained

Every now and then people ask me about the meaning and significance of different signs and symbols in the Cathedral. I thought I’d spend a few moments this evening talking about the paschal candle which stands by the altar during … Continue reading

Posted in Sermons | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Story-tellers of the hope we have in Christ

There’s a story I heard a little while ago about a shepherd. A man was walking in the hills and came across a shepherd looking after his sheep. He had his traditional stick with the crooked end. The man asked … Continue reading

Posted in Sermons | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Easter Triumph, Easter Joy – Changes Everything and Completes Creation

It is dark. Jesus has been in the tomb for over 24 hours now, wrapped in his grave-clothes. The sabbath is finally over and preparations can be made to visit his grave at first light to complete the acts of … Continue reading

Posted in Prayer | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Beware on Good Friday: God sides with the vulnerable

Which words stood out for you as we read John’s account of the final moments of Jesus’ life – his trial before Pilate, condemnation and immediate crucifixion and burial? At the moment one phrase seems particularly relevant, Pilate’s question ‘what … Continue reading

Posted in Sermons | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Was the Vineyard Owner Non-Dom?

Our second reading (Luke 20:9-19) gave us a wealthy landowner whose affairs appear to be complex. We are not told if he was resident in the hypothetical place the story is set, or whether he had non-domiciled status – his … Continue reading

Posted in Sermons | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Invisible, Radiant and Prominent – The Newport Rood

At the end of lockdown in 2020, the new Rood was installed at the entrance to the chancel arch. This striking modern work of art by the Singaporean artist Tay Swee Siong, is made from wire and hangs near the … Continue reading

Posted in Blog | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Prayer of Manaesseh – people can change

Our first reading came from one of those less visited and obscure corners of the Bible. It was The Prayer of Manasseh, which hides in the Apocrypha, a collection of books which many Bibles don’t include. The story of how … Continue reading

Posted in Sermons | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Why do bad things happen?

Why do bad things happen? It’s a question that has taxed so many people for millennia. Some threads in the Bible will imply that it’s because we are punished for some misdemeanour. You could read some elements of our readings … Continue reading

Posted in Sermons | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment