On September 5th we had a whole morning with Rev Dr Russ Parker to hear about the impact of healing and reconciliation and the relevance of some of those principles to city building here in the Black Country.
There were three sessions – at breakfast, ‘Looking for the City’ explored our calling to belong to community and how we might tap into ancient wisdoms to perhaps regain our lost humanity.
The second morning session ‘Building the City’ based on Nehemiah, touched on the need for collective ownership, the requirement to move into the low places where the need is, and converting passion into action.
The last session ‘Principles for City Building’ focused on the importance of spiritual disciplines, the requirement for us to be able to listen in order to connect, and the importance of only moving forward with God’s presence.
Russ Parker has been Director of Acorn Christian Healing Foundation since 1995, which exists to resource and educate the church in the Christian Healing Ministry. Part of Russ’s contribution as Director has been to develop training materials. Russ is the author of a number of books which include: “Healing Dreams”, “Healing Death’s Wounds”; “Free to Fail”, “Forgiveness is Healing”, and “The Wild Spirit” and “Dream Stories” “Healing Wounded History,” “Healing Wounded History”, workbook and his latest book, an anthology of prayer poems for public and private use “Wild Spirit of the Living God.”
Russ travels extensively around the UK and abroad, lecturing and teaching in issues connected with the Christian Healing and Healthcare, Reconciliation and Church Transformation. Russ was a Baptist Pastor from 1972 –77, ordained in the Church of England in 1981. Assistant Curate in Bolton 1981 –1985, Incumbent of Christ Church, Coalville 1985 – 1990, joined Acorn in 1990 and became Director of Acorn in 1995. Russ was the Co-founder and Director of Christian Care and Counsel, a Christian Counselling ministry based in the East Midlands.
He is also a co-founder of the Community of Aidan and Hilda whose mother house is situated on the holy island of Lindisfarne. He is a founder member of the Fellowship of Christ the Healer(UK and USA) which exists to resource leaders of residential healing and healthcare initiatives. He is co-founder of Wholecare an initiative to support and resource Christian healthcare professionals within the NHS. He has a post graduate degree in Phenomenology and Theology from Nottingham University in which his thesis was entitled Dreams as a Religious Phenomenon.
Russ was awarded a Doctor of Divinity from Columbia Evangelical Seminary in the United States in recognition of his outstanding contribution to Christian ministry and for his many writings and his teaching abilities. In particular it was given for the standard of scholarship in his latest book “Healing Wounded History” which is about reconciling peoples and healing places. Russ is married to Roz and lives near Farnham, Surrey.