Award winning blogger Dean John Mann today publishes his 400th Blog on the St Anne’s Cathedral website – three years seven months after first publishing his reflections online!
The Dean of Belfast started blogging during a Diocese of Connor Pilgrimage to the Holy Land in November 2013, providing a daily summary of the experiences and adventures of the pilgrims for both the Connor diocesan website and the Cathedral website. He is pictured (above) during that pilgrimage, probably reflecting on what words to use in that day’s blog!
Inspired by the reception to the Pilgrimage Blog, and realizing that this new media method was a great way of keeping people informed, the Dean published his first ‘Dean’s Blog’ on the Cathedral website on November 26 2013.
It began: “It is sometimes said that so much is happening at St Anne’s week by week that it is difficult to keep in touch and maintain good communication, so, having practised writing a blog over the course of a pilgrimage to the Holy Land, I am going to try producing a few words for all interested in Belfast Cathedral, twice a week…. I will try it until Christmas initially, to see how it goes!”
Clearly he didn’t specify which Christmas, and just six months from Christmas 2017 he is still faithfully blogging twice a week with the blogs published every Tuesday and Friday.
In them, Dean Mann reflects on activities in the Cathedral, faith, music, his garden, and life as he sees it. The blogs are always personable, often funny, and a wonderful reflection of life as a Dean in a City Cathedral with the wonders of the Northern Ireland coast and countryside within easy reach.
For two successive years he has won the Most Engaging Blog category in the Church of Ireland Communications Competition.
Inevitably, all good things will come to an end, and when Dean Mann moves to Swanage for life in a rural parish later this year, the St Anne’s website will publish its last Dean’s Blog.
Unless, of course, like Black Santa, the Dean’s Blog becomes part of the job description… Any takers?!
- Follow the Dean’s Blog link to view the 400th Blog.