Newcastle secure Goode and Balding

first_imgBalding has represented England at both Saxons and Sevens level, is a product of the Leicester Tigers academy and went on to win four Premiership titles and two Heineken Cups with the Welford Road club. LATEST RUGBY WORLD MAGAZINE SUBSCRIPTION DEALS James Goode has extended his stay with the Falcon’s until the end of the seasonNewcastle Falcons have completed a transfer deadline day swoop for Ospreys second-rower James Goode and experienced No.8 Adam Balding on loan until the end of the season.Goode, 29, who was part of the Grand Slam winning Wales under-21s team of 2003, burst onto the scene with his hometown club Cardiff Blues. Making 15 appearances for the Blues, the renowned line-out specialist earned himself a move to Air New Zealand Cup side Manawatu Turbos in 2007.Goode enjoyed three successful seasons down under before the 6ft 7” 17st 8lb forward returned to his native Wales, with the Ospreys in November 2009. BRIDGEND, WALES – NOVEMBER 12: James Goode of the Ospreys looks on during the LV Anglo Welsh Cup match between Ospreys and Leicester Tigers at the Brewery Field on November 12, 2010 in Bridgend, Wales. (Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images) In 2004 the Coventry-born forward, 32, moved to Gloucester and after a string of impressive performances he became club captain for the Cherry and Whites. Re-joining the Falcons after a successful stint with the club during the 2008-09 season, the 6ft 2” 17st 5lb lynchpin moved to Worcester Warriors in February 2010 on a two-year deal.“I’m looking forward to the move to Newcastle, a club that I know well and have fond memories from my previous time in the north east,” said Balding. “I’m fit, injury free and determined to make a big impression. I’m keen to get up to Newcastle and do my best before the end of the season.last_img read more

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Lambie starts at full-back for Boks against England

first_imgLATEST RUGBY WORLD MAGAZINE SUBSCRIPTION DEALS Pat Lambie replaces injured Zane Kirchner at full-backSPRINGBOK COACH Heyneke Meyer made three changes to the match 22 for Saturday’s second Test against England in Johannesburg.The only change to the starting 15 is at fullback, Pat Lambie replacing the injured Zane Kirchner. Lambie replaced Kirchner after half-time last week and will play in his 13th Test for South Africa.On the bench, Werner Kruger comes in for the injured Coenie Oosthuizen, while Bjorn Basson takes over from Lambie amongst the replacements.Neither Kruger nor Basson featured in last weekend’s first Test in Durban, won by 22-17 by the Springboks. Both played in their last Tests for South Africa against New Zealand on the away leg of the Tri-Nations last year.“We decided against no unnecessary changes as we aim to build some continuity during this season,” said Meyer.“We still have not had a lot of preparation time, but I’m pleased to have seen how the players have been getting stuck in – on the training field and during our off-field sessions. Starting XV:15 Pat Lambie, 14 JP Pietersen, 13 Jean de Villiers (C), 12 Frans Steyn, 11 Bryan Habana, 10 Morné Steyn, 9 Francois Hougaard, 1 Tendai Mtawarir, 2 Bismarck du Plessis, 3 Jannie du Plessis, 4 Eben Etzebeth, 5 Juandré Kruger, 6 Marcell Coetzee, 7 Willem Alberts, 8 Pierre Spies,Replacements:16 Adriaan Strauss, 17 Werner Kruger, 18 Flip van der Merwe, 19 Keegan Daniel, 20 Ruan Pienaar, 21 Wynand Olivier, 22 Bjorn Basson “This weekend will be a big challenge yet again against a good England side, but our focus is still on ourselves. We need to show further improvement from last weekend and have to make a step up this weekend.“We have confidence in all the players in our squad and that is why Pat, Werner and Bjorn have slotted in easily. Everyone knows what is needed this weekend and they have been very sharp at training. We now need to translate that to the match on Saturday.”South Africa v EnglandSaturday, 16 June 2012, at JohannesburgKick:off – 16:00 BST DURBAN, SOUTH AFRICA – JUNE 04: Patrick Lambie of South Africa during a training session at Northwood Crusaders Rugby Club on June 04, 2012 in Durban, South Africa. (Photo by Steve Haag / Gallo Images /Getty Images)last_img read more

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Gnashing and crashing: when rugby gets bite-y

first_img Flashing gnashers: Dylan Hartley shows us his pearly whites during the 2012 6 Nations, after which he was bannedBy RW StaffIT WAS a headline writer’s dream at the weekend as football’s pantomime villain Luis Suarez revealed his bloomers once again, embarrassing himself and everyone else associated with him by biting an opposition player, Chelsea’s Branislav Ivanovic. Rightly, the papers were smeared with disgust. Sacking, suspensions and solitary were mentioned and the puns kept rolling.Rugby cannot afford to paint itself as a sport where this would never happen for it is no shy, retiring innocent when it comes to biting. Indeed, some of the burly buggers have a proven to have an, ahem, appetite when it comes to gnawing on the opposition.He bled a lot to be fair: Sean FitzpatrickA Springbok bites a KiwiTests between South Africa and New Zealand are often slobberknockers. Amidst the gusto, though, it can get a little bit more unsavoury than your average nudge, punch and tickle.In 1994, during the second Test in a series between the two in Wellington, Johan ‘Le Beast’ Le Roux decided that chomping down on the ear of All Black captain Sean Fitzpatrick was a totally sane, normal, tasty way of dealing with the celebrated hooker. The All Blacks won 13-9 in the close, niggly affair, with the blood-dripped Fitzpatrick celebrating a Series win.Le Roux was sent home for his beastly behaviour and a 17-month ban brought an ignominious end to the South African’s international career.Tetley Bitter and nibblesIn 1998 England and Bath prop Kevin Yates was cited (alongside his other two front-row colleagues) for a bite on the ear of London Scottish flanker Simon Fenn during a Tetley Bitter Cup showdown at the Rec.It was later decided that Yates was guilty of the assault that meant Fenn required 25 stitches. He received a six month ban. Having been dropped by England the prop moved to New Zealand, playing his rugby for the Hurricanes franchise. He was finally reinstated to England duty in 2007, just under 10 years since his last cap.A 6 Nations snarlIn the final game of the 2012 6 Nations Championship between Ireland and England, quiet, unassuming hooker Dylan Hartley bit down on the finger of flanker Stephen Ferris.Hartley had received a lengthy ban for gouging in 2007 (some 26 weeks) but was only handed a 8-week break in 2012, meaning that he was clear to tour in the summer with England, despite missing Northampton’s end of season charge.Vicious grin: Kevin Yates at Bath, 1998Irish back-rowers must be delicious  Sisa Koyamaibole of Bordeaux Begles dined out on Declan Danaher’s bicep during an Amlin Challenge Cup rout in 2012 by London Irish in 2012. In October the No 8 was given a three-month ban in all competitions and told to keep his gnashers to himself. Hard to do when you used to be a Shark.Points lost, bite marks gainedIn December this season Plymouth Albion and Bristol were handed a suspended five-point deduction (meant for next year) and fined £250 each after a ugly full-team tear-up in their Championship fixture. 7 Aug 1998: Portrait of Kevin Yates of Bath during a squad photocall at The Recreation Ground in Bath, England. Mandatory Credit: David Rogers/Allsport LATEST RUGBY WORLD MAGAZINE SUBSCRIPTION DEALS Among all the wind-milling limbs and nasty language, it was later adjudged, was Bristol prop Jason Hobson. What was he doing? Biting Bevon Armitage on the arm, according to officials.He received a three-month suspension and only just made it back in time to see Bristol narrowly lose out on a play-off place for the off-season race to promotion to the Aviva Premiership.last_img read more

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Hotshots: Meet Bath second row Charlie Ewels

first_imgJohn Fletcher and Peter Walton with England U18 – I still speak to Peter now. Danny Grewcock, our academy director, mentors me now and he couldn’t be a nicer bloke.You played in the back row against Toulouse – what was that like?I’d played in the back row at school so it wasn’t completely alien to me. I’m in an exciting part of my career and I’ll play anywhere they ask me to.And you captained Bath in the LV= Cup?I was massively proud to do that. I have been captain in the A league, too, and I’m quite passionate about the whole leadership side of rugby. RW verdict: Trusted to play out of position and lead the team as a 19-year-old, Ewels is highly rated.Want to know which youngsters are catching the eye this month? The latest edition of RW is on sale now. Click here to see what else is in the mag. When did you first play rugby?I joined Bournemouth when I was seven, because some friends were playing rugby and I was a big kid. I played for England U16 then got a scholarship to Bryanston for sixth form and rugby took over.At what stage did you become a lock?  When I was about 12.When did you join Bath?I joined the club’s junior academy when I was 14 or 15. Hats off to my dad for driving me all over Dorset and Wiltshire! I didn’t really think about making a career out of rugby until I signed my first contract when I was 18.Who has mentored you? LATEST RUGBY WORLD MAGAZINE SUBSCRIPTION DEALS Code breaker: Ewels makes a break during the JWC final last_img read more

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Hotshot: Sale Sharks wing Arron Reed

first_img Break man: Arron Reed has played age-grade rugby for England. Photo: Getty Images TAGS: Sale Sharks You played in the Singha Sevens for Sale… We had a young team and I really enjoyed it. I’ve played in the A team too.FOR THE LATEST SUBSCRIPTION OFFERS, CLICK HEREHow big a boost was it being given a five-year deal by the club? It’s great and I’m looking forward to the next few years with them. On and off the field, I just want to learn and improve.Who’s been the biggest influence on you? My family’s support has been important and my move to Kirkham Grammar School when I was 16 had a big influence because I did more rugby training. Aled Trenhaile was the head coach and I improved a lot. He’s got a lot of rugby knowledge.Who were your childhood heroes? Jonny Wilkinson and Brian O’Driscoll were the main two; I wanted to be like them. Even now, watching TV, I look at what England players are doing and at what New Zealand players are doing, and see if I can learn off them.RW Verdict: The Sharks clearly see huge potential in the winger given the long-term contract he signed recently. He should learn a lot from the back-three talent at the club, the likes of Denny Solomona, Mike Haley (now Munster) and Will Addison (now Ulster). Arron Reed could make his Premiership debut this weekend, having been named on the bench for the clash with Wasps. Find out more about the Sale Sharks wing in our Q&A LATEST RUGBY WORLD MAGAZINE SUBSCRIPTION DEALS Arron Reed has been rewarded for his prolific scoring form for National One side Sale FC by being named on the bench for the Sharks’ Gallagher Premiership match against Wasps this Saturday. The 19-year-old started Anglo-Welsh Cup games against Worcester and Saracens last season but has yet to feature in the cut and thrust of Premiership rugby.Reed first caught our eye at the 2017 Premiership Sevens – and below is an interview we ran with him last year. Two players whom he name-checks, Mike Haley and Will Addison, have since moved on, but on the flip side he now has a chance to learn from one of Europe’s most lethal finishers, Chris Ashton…Name Arron Reed Born 10 July 1999 Birthplace Chester, Cheshire Club Sale Sharks Country England Position WingHow did you get into rugby? I’d watch my dad play and wanted to get involved. I played football but didn’t enjoy it as much. I liked the contact; it was more physical. And I liked running with ball in hand.Try time: Reed breaks clear to score against Harlequins during this year’s Premiership Sevens (Getty)How old were you when you first played? Nine, at Tarleton RFC. I started as a ten and then moved to the wing and I enjoy it there. It’s much better for me because I’m more of a runner than a ball player. I’m better on the ball in space than with distribution and stuff like that.Did you play any other sports? I did a bit of athletics – sprinting 100m and 200m – and golf. I like the driving range. And I love table tennis.Talk us through your representative honours… I played North U16 and then my first England game was for the U18s against Scotland this year. I joined the Sale Academy at 15 and trained once a week, but I’m full-time now. This article first appeared in the November 2017 issue of Rugby World.Kitted out: the winger at a pre-season photocalllast_img read more

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Steff Evans Opens Up To Rugby World

first_img Young Star: 23-year-old Steff Evans scored a fantastic try against Scotland, and has retained his starting spot against England (Photo by David Rogers/Getty Images) The only way to push my game on is to maintain my consistency. No player is rated from just one season. It’s about proving it over a number of years. I’ll keep my head down and keep trying to get better.This article originally appeared in the July 2017 issue of Rugby World magazine. LATEST RUGBY WORLD MAGAZINE SUBSCRIPTION DEALS Steff Evans scored the bonus-point try for Wales in their win over Scotland in the opening game of the 2018 Six Nations and has kept his place on the wing for the game against England at Twickenham this weekend.It’s just reward for the 23-year-old after a breakthrough 2017 – he was the Guinness Pro12’s top try-scorer with 11, helped the Scarlets win the title and won his first cap against Tonga in June. Here the Wales wing speaks to Rugby World magazine about teaching, his defence and James Davies…Like a lot of the boys down here, I’m a Welsh speaker. During the week we’ll only speak English in camp but during games, if we want to confuse opponents, a few of us will chat in Welsh.I was a cheeky kid in school. My maxim was if you get close to the teachers, you’ll be alright. It seemed to work – I didn’t get in much trouble at Ysgol y Strade.Teacher: Evans set out to become a primary school teacher until his rugby success took over (Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images)I studied at Cardiff Met for a year to become a primary school teacher. I didn’t have my heart set on becoming a rugby player because I hadn’t been picked up by the academies and needed something to fall back on with good holidays!In my first month with Llanelli I picked up a Player of the Month award. I thought, ‘I can’t be doing too badly, maybe I should give rugby a proper go’. It’s going well, touch wood…Related: Wales Squad to face EnglandYou get the odd bit of criticism on social media after a game. I’ve decided to shrug it off. It’s the only way you can move forward, by not worrying.center_img From facing George North, to his school days as a cheeky kid, Steff Evans bares all in a chat with Rugby World Coming face to face with George North was a shock. You don’t realise how big he is. His attitude to training is first class – you can see why he has such a reputation in the game. The fact he’s just 25 is crazy.Tough to Stop: Evans was shocked at the sheer size of North when he first faced him (Photo by Mark Thompson/Getty Images)The best player I’ve faced this season has to be Charles Piutau. He has great feet but he’s so strong. He can step you or run right through you, which not many back-three players can do. He’s mustard.The Kiwi: Evans acknowledges the best player he has faced is Charles Piutau of Ulster, simply because he is so difficult to contain (Photo By David Fitzgerald/Sportsfile via Getty Images)The Scarlets are one big family. We were chuffed to make the play-offs – it was a team effort after a poor start. We didn’t blame anyone; we put in the hard work and got the results. Credit must go to Wayne Pivac, Stephen Jones and Byron Hayward for turning it round.LATEST RUGBY WORLD MAGAZINE SUBSCRIPTION DEALSCubby (James Davies) is a character. But behind all the jokes, his rugby knowledge is second to none. He’s a brilliant player, with all the skills. He calls me his “protégé”. He’s a bit of an entrepreneur is Cubby, a bit like Del Boy.Del Boy: Evans’ teammate James Davies is quite the entrepreneur (Photo by Simon King – CameraSport via Getty Images)I’ve worked hard on my defence this season. Last season my missed tackle count was pretty high, so I worked hard with Byron on my extras. I’d perhaps concentrated too much on my footwork, but needed to knuckle down on my technique. Jonathan Davies and Scott Williams, who know a bit about defending, chipped in.To see some of my stats from this season has been mad. To be sitting top alongside Piutau for line breaks is hard to believe. It’s good that some of my hard work has paid off.last_img read more

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What’s inside Rugby World’s new Six Nations issue?

first_img TAGS: Highlight From Jamie George to Joe Schmidt and a greatest Six Nations XV – Rugby World’s March 2019 issue has the championship covered What’s inside Rugby World’s new Six Nations issue?This year’s Six Nations Championship is underway and the new issue of Rugby World magazine is the perfect accompaniment to the tournament.The March 2019 edition features exclusive big-name interviews, expert analysis and our greatest Six Nations XV – and much more.Here are 15 reasons to pick up a copy of Rugby World’s new March issue…1. Jamie George’s life in picturesThe hooker impressed in England’s opening Six Nations win over Ireland and he talks cups, coffee and camel capers as he reflects on his career so farCalm before storm: Jamie George walks out at the Aviva Stadium ahead of Ireland v England (Getty Images)2. Rugby’s class war – private schools v state schools“There’s too much bogus elitism.” That’s the verdict of Rugby World columnist Stephen Jones, who pleads for changes in a player development system that excludes too many and devastates others3. Welcome to my club… Jersey RedsThe islanders roll out the red carpet for RW’s Alan Dymock as he attends their Greene King IPA Championship match against Nottingham Head man: Ireland coach Joe Schmidt issues instructions during training (Getty Images)4. The secrets of Joe Schmidt’s successFormer Test prop Mike Ross provides a detailed insight into the Ireland head coach and explains why “I wish we could clone Joe Schmidt”5. The greatest Six Nations XVFormer England fly-half Stuart Barnes turns selector to pick his ‘dream team’ of players since the championship expanded in 20006. What it’s like to… use cannabis oilsSaracens locks George Kruis and Dom Day explain their new business venture Central Parkes: Hadleigh Parkes has become a key figure for Wales (Getty Images)7. Hadleigh Parkes uncoveredThe centre has fast become a key cog in the Wales team – get to know Mr Consistent, with a little help from Rhys Patchell8. The changing face of the Six Nations Warm-up: Caleb Clarke breaks ins Super Rugby pre-season game between Blues and Chiefs (Getty Images)13. Super Rugby 2019 previewThe new Super Rugby season kicks off this month, so we asked our friends at SA Rugby magazine to pick a player to watch from all 15 teams14. Why England’s driving maul is such a threatRW’s analyst Sean Holley dissects the force and finesse behind one of England’s chief weapons15. Wales wing Josh AdamsThe Worcester Warrior talks second chances, Warren Gatland and Game of Thrones in this interview The championship has come a long way since 2000 but with fluctuations in sponsorship value and broadcast battles to come as tech improves, what does the future hold? RW’s Alan Dymock investigates Fast show: Scotland wing Sean Maitland en route to a try against Argentina (Getty Images)9. Downtime with… Sean MaitlandThe Scotland wing talks embarrassing moments, sexy team-mates and Batman10. France at a crossroadsFrench rugby is at an all-time low, with growing safety concerns amongst parents and the sport being left behind by football in the popularity stakes. So what can be done? Gavin Mortimer reportsDOWNLOAD RUGBY WORLD’S DIGITAL EDITION HERE11. Ben Ryan’s World Cup planRugby World’s resident columnist puts forward five changes he’d like to see happen at the World Cup, including no draws and a plate competition12. Scotland prop WP NelWhy the Edinburgh tighthead is thriving on growing expectation in Scotland LATEST RUGBY WORLD MAGAZINE SUBSCRIPTION DEALS PLUS, THERE’S ALL THIS…Box-kicking tips from Conor MurrayEngland Women’s Hannah BottermanInside the Mind of Michele CampagnaroRising Stars Joe Heyes and Rob ValetiniA bonus points debateSamoa Sevens star Alamanda MotugaBrendan Venter on ItalyFollow Rugby World on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.last_img read more

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Does rugby need superstar names to challenge global market?

first_imgLATEST RUGBY WORLD MAGAZINE SUBSCRIPTION DEALS Does rugby need superstar names to challenge global market?FOR A moment everything tilted, without ever actually toppling. When it was believed that Lionel Messi would be leaving Barcelona, in what would be the great cleaving of a quintessential football union, panic began to rise.There were takes – oh were there takes. There was a giddiness too. As with a departure, so would there be a glorious arrival at a new football club. Would he upturn another league? Would he be wearing sky blue? Could we all keep up?And as soon as the panic rose, it receded. He would stay.It can feel like that with football. Some storylines seep into the greater consciousness, like bar smoke into your dungarees (the Nineties was a very different time). But it also shows the power not just of the world’s biggest sport but of the biggest names within that sport.Football isn’t alone here. In basketball, there are figures that the whole world seems to bend around. On a recent trip to the USA to see the LA Sevens, over an encounter with Bryan Curtis, editor-at-large with The Ringer, talk turned to the NBA’s big-ticket star LeBron James and what happened when he switched Cleveland for California.All eyes on him: Lionel Messi for Barcelona (Getty Images)“When LeBron moved to LA he brought journalists with him,” Curtis explains of the icon’s move to the Lakers. “Which is so fascinating, right? It’s like LeBron creates content.“There’s a story or ten at his locker every night. So when he decided to come here that brought a big centre of gravity here, and then when Kawhi Leonard came here last summer too (to join the LA Clippers), that brought another centre of gravity. So all of a sudden, you know, come here, there’s a story at their lockers every night. Why wouldn’t you be there?”Those stories do not just stay in the States, either. They reach fans in Shanghai, Santo Domingo or Sheffield.Yet as everyone in sport tries to plot a route out of this business-devouring pandemic, with so much uncertainty still ahead, you consider how lucky it is that certain leagues – certain games – have stellar, bankable names to sell with. And then you wonder: does rugby do enough to make marketable stars out of their best talents?There’s a feeling they will need to.DAZZLING STARS“THERE IS no doubt that using the players as the sharp end of the spear is the smart move,” says sports marketing consultant Tim Crow of the opportunities facing rugby. “Particularly if you want to recruit the younger generation. They follow celebrities, they follow players.“I saw it when Beckham moved from (Manchester) United to Real Madrid, when I was working with sponsors of both clubs. And Real Madrid reported a huge influx of fans from around the world. We saw the same with Cristiano Ronaldo moving from Madrid to Juventus. Juventus put on huge numbers of social media followers.“With all things considered, rugby does not have a global superstar. There’s some very, very big stars in their country and in the game. But does anybody transcend the sport right now? I don’t think so. And by transcend the sport I mean, if they walk down a street in any country in the world, would a decent number of people stop them?In demand: The late Jonah Lomu with fans in Cardiff (Getty Images)“Back in the day, if Jonah Lomu would walk down the street pretty much anywhere, a lot of people would have recognised him.”When it comes to big fish in rugby, Jonah is still the whale. His legacy as the very first rugby megastar is secured, but Crow suggests no current player has that same global appeal – the kind that creeps across the boundaries between sports. At least right now.He considers the Jonah Lomu Rugby video game, released in 1997. An epochal part of rugby culture in the wake of professionalism, the sight of  Lomu tearing past poor pixelated defenders was burnt into the memories of so many – alongside the commentary of Bill McLaren and Bill Beaumont.Crow recalls a conversation with a game developer, when the title came up. According to the sports marketer, the developer said: “We’d never do anything like that again, with rugby as it is now, because there’s no one big enough to support it.” Before adding himself: “Those games are sold on people. Who’s on the front cover and whose game is it? It definitely holds rugby back, no question.”When Agustin Pichot was running for chairman of World Rugby, against Beaumont, the Argentine made talk of a game part of his platform. He could see the appeal to a certain generation and the reflexive brand recognition that could be learnt. But the screaming, tie-dye elephant in the room is that a game has to offer a certain return. Electronic Artists know they can rely on their FIFA and Madden NFL titles.To be clear: there are rock stars in the current game that rugby is lucky to have. But as it stands, there is a feeling that none can convert the global masses or force soccer fans to purchase Rugby 2021.Leading: Patrick Mahomes against the Texans in the new NFL season (Getty Images)In American Football, there is no shortage of faces who can sell a game. In the last iteration of Madden, Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes graced the cover. He would then lead his team to a Super Bowl win and is the face of advertising campaigns.In April it was confirmed that Mahomes had overtaken the legendary Tom Brady as the man to sell the most merchandise in 2019. And at the same time, reports in the US claimed that on the day fans could buy the new Tampa Bay Buccaneers jersey, following Brady’s move to the team, sales of merchandise with his name on it increased by more than 3000% compared with the previous day on e-commerce sites run by fanatics (like NFLShop.com or shop.buccaneers.com).These guys mean big business. But do they come out of their academies, colleges and early days in their sport ready-baked for superstardom? Perhaps some special alchemy is needed.Beamed round the world: Rugby needs big stars in viral moments (Getty Images)“There’s got to be that magic,” Crow says. “There’s got to be that Steph Curry or LeBron James or Lionel Messi or Jonah Lomu or Tiger Woods moment. The moment that transcends the sport and everyone goes, ‘Okay, whoa, did you see that?’ And that goes around the world.“It’s very difficult that, because otherwise you’d have global superstars being produced all the time. because there are magical things happening all the time (on the field of play). But unless someone is a superstar, if they’ve not got that X-Factor it ain’t gonna travel.”SOCIAL BATTLEGROUNDSIF YOU want to see a real time example of this, consider the impact Slovenian basketball star Luka Doncic had during the NBA’s time in the bubble. He is a growing force in the league and in one superb showing for the Dallas Mavericks in their series against the Clippers, he sent an army of international fans off to torture their devices.According to a spokesperson from the NBA: “Doncic’s winning shot in (that) game was talked about across Europe and globally. It trended in 16 countries (trend times were between 6.15pm on 23 August to 10.40am on 25 August, New York time).“The countries the words ‘Luka Doncic’ trended in were Argentina, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Dominican Republic, France, Greece, Indonesia, Ireland, Italy, Mexico, Panama, Spain, Turkey and Venezuela. In the Dominican Republic it was trending in first place for 585 minutes.“NBA Spain tweeted the moment that night and the video has garnered more than 1.7m video views (now past 1.8m) and is the single highest performing piece of content on the channel since the restart.”Remember, these are stats based on an individual – that’s the pointy end of the spear, as Crow would say.In a recent report from The Athletic on Everton’s signing of Colombian soccer star James Rodriguez, the site noted: “Another aspect that appeals to the club is Rodriguez’s formidable social media profile. He has 46 million Instagram followers, more than Manchester United, Liverpool, Lewis Hamilton and Tiger Woods.”They went on to add: “The club will target more online adverts and content in South America, which was viewed as economically thriving before Covid-19, particularly in Brazil. Rodriguez’s star-studded CV makes him the perfect vehicle for converting some of his followers into potential supporters.”If we want a shorthand comparison of an individual’s attraction on Instagram, Dan Carter has 1m followers, while Springboks captain Siya Kolisi – who Jay-Z’s Roc Nation group are hoping will cement himself as a global star who transcends his sport – has 534k followers. LeBron James? He has 71.9m followers. Then there’s Cristiano Ronaldo, who has an astounding audience of 238m on the platform.Of course it is all relative. Rugby cannot simply choose to explode in popularity overnight, to compete with soccer.Roc on: Roc Nation will hope Siya Kolisi transcends rugby (Getty Images)In a recent interview with the BBC, celebrating 25 years since rugby went professional in the Nineties (as we’ve said, a very different time), World Rugby CEO Brett Gosper said: “There is now a lot more coherence and understanding of the sport and its fan base than there was in those days. There is a collective will to do great things for the sport in terms of growing it. “Coming from where we have come from – seeing the interest it engenders whether in the World Cup arena or the Olympics arena – this sport only has one direction to go, so you can only be optimistic.“Yes, we would probably like to have moved a bit faster and brought on some new markets faster, which we are working on now.”You’re nodding. Yep, fair enough.It’s also worth noting that as the world’s youth have rapidly embraced the TikTok social media platform, World Rugby have jumped in willingly. As it stands they have 462k followers on there, with 9.7m ‘likes’. Global superstar: Does rugby have the crossover appeal? We look at the value of iconic figures in the fight for international attentioncenter_img In a recent column for SportsPro, World Rugby’s chief commercial officer Tom Hill sounded hugely optimistic about the economic potential of the sport. He said that 70% of the recent Rugby World Cup‘s global broadcast audience came from outside of traditional rugby markets (World Rugby say they had an audience of more than 857m through the tournament – by comparison FIFA claim they had 1.12bn viewers for the Women’s World Cup the same year).Hill pointed to impressive growth in South-East Asia, where Thailand, the Philippines, Malaysia and Vietnam were on the list of top 20 territories for TV figures globally. He added that “the region, along with the US, also broke into the top six across the TikTok, Snapchat, Facebook and YouTube platforms”.Gains: Rugby’s finanical success stories deserve credit (Getty Images)But then he also wrote: “Whilst Rugby World Cup 2019 was a huge success and we are incredibly proud of what was achieved, the world has changed during the Covid-19 pandemic and a new way of doing business has emerged. Major events will inevitably need to evolve, as will the offering for commercial partners. There is, now more than ever, an appetite for impactful, purpose-driven partnerships that reflect the passions and concerns of society.”Change with one eye on the markets is great. Interestingly, he makes no mention of the words ‘athletes’, ‘individuals’ or ‘stars’, while ‘player’ only features in a line about “digital activation of assets including player of the match and Rugby World Cup Daily generated more than £370 million (US$486 million) in Hookit Earned Media value.” Of course his was a piece about the commercial future of a whole sport, but then again rugby has an interesting relationship with the idea of the individual.TEAM > INDIVIDUALSAS CROW sees it, “There’s sort of an ethic in rugby about the team – the team become very, very important over the individual. Arguably the biggest brand in rugby is the All Blacks and that is all about the team rather than the individual, which is an interesting way of marketing the game.”You will be aware that certain All Blacks are a sponsor’s dream – Beauden Barrett is no stranger to an ad campaign. And it’s the sponsors, not his own team, pushing him. Plus, like some of those stars considered iconic from other sports, things evolved organically for Barrett. Remember he wasn’t a starter during that 2015 World Cup triumph.Give ’em the look: Beauden Barrett poses (Getty Images)Yet for some of a certain sensibility, championing any individual rugby player is vulgar. For others, someone who tries to stand out should not be trusted. Those individuals who blow games open are good, sure, but teams survive because of the ‘bin juice’, workaday, solid pros, and the lads will just take it one game at a time and the best players are just one of the team.It’s clearly different in individual sports, right?“There’s no question Tiger Woods remains the biggest draw in golf – he moves the needle like no one else and transcends the sport,” says Nick Bonfield of Golf Monthly magazine. “As an example, in 2015 Woods signed up to play the Phoenix Open, despite being a shell of his former self at the time. Regardless, the tournament smashed its previous attendance record and an auxiliary media centre had to be constructed to cope with demand.“In-person attendance, television viewership and media coverage all increase exponentially when he’s in a field. That said, golf isn’t as reliant on Woods as it was, say, 15 years ago.“Rory McIlroy – who has won four Major titles since 2011 – looked like becoming golf’s next genuine superstar, but the fact he’s arguably fallen short of that prediction points to an increasing strength in depth at the top of the game, both in terms of on-course prowess and marketability. Four-time Major Champion Brooks Koepka, prolific winner Dustin Johnson, a bulked-up Bryson DeChambeau, the ‘golfing scientist’, fiery Spaniard Jon Rahm and Justin Thomas – a man who has already won 13 PGA Tour events at the age of 27 – are all vying for the World No.1 position, with the likes of USPGA champion Collin Morikawa, Matthew Wolff and impressive Dane Rasmus Hojgaard headlining the next generation.“Woods is still golf’s biggest star, and by a distance, but he’s not carrying the torch alone. When he calls time on a historic career, the professional game will be well placed to cope. With that being said, though, it’s great that Tiger’s still going!”Is there anything team sports can compare here? Certainly individual names from team sports can ‘move the needle’.Golf’s big draw: Tiger Woods (Getty Images)Sure there’s still that parade of celebrities coming out of soccer, with comfort in the belief that the cast can keep refreshing without the product being damaged. In June, Javier Tebas, president of La Liga, told the Catalan radio station RAC 1 that: “We have television contracts signed with or without Messi.”However the administrator also conceded that while others had left the league before, “it’s different in Messi’s case.“Messi is the best player in the history of soccer. We have been lucky to have always had him in our league. I think that Messi’s departure would be noticeable.”You can sense the nervousness. When you’re relying so much on certain teams and stars, any wobble from them can feel seismic. But you would always prefer to have some megastar names in your league. Which is why you can forgive anyone at Premiership Rugby for getting excited about Semi Radradra‘s arrival in Bristol. If things go well, his brand could be cultivated nicely. But all parties have to show willing for that to succeed.It’s tough under the spotlight. And when others seek to control their own narrative through their own ventures, like England’s Maro Itoje has set out to do, you can only respect it.Without doubt Itoje resonates with rugby fans. You know the chant from the Lions tour. You have seen his impact for club and country. You have seen slick shots of him. Which is testament to his prowess as a lock as much as his charisma. Over time he could well become the rugby name known around the globe.Charismatic: England lock Maro Itoje (Getty Images)It’s worth considering the type of players who could stand out for the uninitiated. For example, in the truncated, recent Six Nations, Itoje made the most dominant tackles, with 20. Look down the list of names after him and Bernard le Roux of France made 13, with Sam Underhill making 11. Will those stats blow the minds of the casual or uninitiated?In the 2019 Six Nations, Alun Wyn Jones had the most effective defensive ruck arrivals, while on the offensive side George Kruis had the most effective attacking ruck arrivals. Which is why their supporters love them. That is hammering yourself for the good of the team.The sad thing is, the special moments almost have to be more blindingly obvious, often away from the forwards, and loaded with panache.COMPETING WITH THE WORLDIN THE hybrid world of ‘sports entertainment’ and wrestling, being vocal, flamboyant or demonstrative is a large part of the product. And outfits like World Wrestling Entertainment are well aware of their place amongst competing interests.Paul Levesque – better known to some by his ring name, Triple H – looks after global talent strategy and development for WWE. He recently told The Bill Simmons Podcast of the company: “I think it’s the growth potential of what this company can be and become as a media company. When you look at the rest of the world – to expand into those markets. Because of geography in the past, we’ve only been able to go in there for a one-off or something and come back to do television. So localising in those places becomes very big. Sometimes especially in the US, you tend to think about just the US.“But when you look outside at India, just the potential alone. There are 1.5 billion people there and we’re the second biggest sport in India outside of cricket, and cricket is like a religion. There are opportunities for us there, we’re firmly planted there. We have a long 25-plus year track record in that market, but we can get in there much deeper and create opportunities in ways that we never have before because of technology and everything else.”Playing the crowd: Triple H in the ring, 2011 (Getty Images)And the talent is at the heart of that. For their obvious abilities and also what they project out into the world, away from the ring.You may think there is a pantomime element to what they do, but Levesque has no problem using the word ‘sport’ and he is well aware of what WWE is competing against. What their product also has, inherently, is tension between the talent.It’s something others in sport have seen the benefit of. The Netflix docu-series F1: Drive To Survive has been praised by some reviewers. Within the series, the sport’s bosses have allowed the producers to highlight rivalries, dramas and tensions – in fact, they have made a point of it. And neutrals have appreciated it. One Wired review had the a subheading that said “the series manages to capture the true drama of F1”.This is a vastly different approach to the 24 Sevens mini docs that World Rugby and HSBC have produced on the HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series. It remains to be seen if their ‘everyone loves everyone’ approach will entice outsiders to the abbreviated form of rugby.“The younger generation are just as interested – and in some cases even more interested – in what happens behind the scenes as they are what happens on the field of play, in the arena,” offers Crow. “That is one of the things that eSports is very good at bringing to life.“We have eSports’ world’s coming up in a couple of weeks. You can have a lot of gamers online training and they’ll open it up so people can train with them. They will engage with them online while they’re doing it. That kind of thing is anathema to sports. They want things behind closed doors and there’s a lot of sacred cows that will have to be shot in order to truly embrace what the competition is doing.“You’re competing with Netflix (and gaming as well as other sports). If you look at teens and the early 20s, Netflix and YouTube are dominating their day. If you haven’t got content that is ready-made for those platforms, you’re fighting for a smaller and smaller share of the pie.”Squad calls: The Lions selections in 2017 (Getty Images)Rugby bodies are not sleepwalking, though. Shane Whelan, director of digital, marketing and communications for the British & Irish Lions, told The Telegraph this week: “In terms of online engagement, the squad announcement is on a par with the first Test – it gets massive numbers on social media. For instance, in the week leading up to the reveal (in 2017) we added 150,000 followers on our social channels.“Over the years we’ve seen it grow as an event too, but we want to take it to the next level. We believe it can be a standalone, appointment-to-view TV event, similar to the NFL Draft, but obviously not quite on that scale just yet.”Sustainable growth takes time and it’s worth fighting for. The powers-that-be in the sport know this.As the fight for eyeballs intensifies in a post-Covid world, though, we will see how much rugby is willing to invest in turning their brightest stars into personalties who appeal across all sports.Can’t get to the shops? You can download the digital edition of Rugby World straight to your tablet or subscribe to the print edition to get the magazine delivered to your door. Follow Rugby World on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.last_img read more

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Anglican Communion gives thanks for Nigerian archbishop’s release

first_img Rector Martinsville, VA TryTank Experimental Lab and York St. John University of England Launch Survey to Study the Impact of Covid-19 on the Episcopal Church TryTank Experimental Lab Associate Rector Columbus, GA Rector Smithfield, NC Tags An Evening with Presiding Bishop Curry and Iconographer Kelly Latimore Episcopal Migration Ministries via Zoom June 23 @ 6 p.m. ET Rector/Priest in Charge (PT) Lisbon, ME Missioner for Disaster Resilience Sacramento, CA Episcopal Migration Ministries’ Virtual Prayer Vigil for World Refugee Day Facebook Live Prayer Vigil June 20 @ 7 p.m. ET New Berrigan Book With Episcopal Roots Cascade Books Virtual Episcopal Latino Ministry Competency Course Online Course Aug. 9-13 Featured Events By ACNS staffPosted Sep 16, 2013 Director of Music Morristown, NJ Director of Administration & Finance Atlanta, GA An Evening with Aliya Cycon Playing the Oud Lancaster, PA (and streaming online) July 3 @ 7 p.m. ET Episcopal Charities of the Diocese of New York Hires Reverend Kevin W. VanHook, II as Executive Director Episcopal Charities of the Diocese of New York Africa, In-person Retreat: Thanksgiving Trinity Retreat Center (West Cornwall, CT) Nov. 24-28 Assistant/Associate Rector Morristown, NJ Virtual Celebration of the Jerusalem Princess Basma Center Zoom Conversation June 19 @ 12 p.m. ET Rector Collierville, TN Rector Washington, DC Curate Diocese of Nebraska Episcopal Church releases new prayer book translations into Spanish and French, solicits feedback Episcopal Church Office of Public Affairs Rector and Chaplain Eugene, OR Rector Pittsburgh, PA This Summer’s Anti-Racism Training Online Course (Diocese of New Jersey) June 18-July 16 Assistant/Associate Rector Washington, DC Family Ministry Coordinator Baton Rouge, LA Inaugural Diocesan Feast Day Celebrating Juneteenth San Francisco, CA (and livestream) June 19 @ 2 p.m. PT Priest-in-Charge Lebanon, OH The Church Pension Fund Invests $20 Million in Impact Investment Fund Designed to Preserve Workforce Housing Communities Nationwide Church Pension Group Remember Holy Land Christians on Jerusalem Sunday, June 20 American Friends of the Episcopal Diocese of Jerusalem Associate Rector for Family Ministries Anchorage, AK Associate Priest for Pastoral Care New York, NY Rector Bath, NC John Simpson says: Bishop Diocesan Springfield, IL Priest Associate or Director of Adult Ministries Greenville, SC AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to PrintFriendlyPrintFriendlyShare to FacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterShare to EmailEmailShare to MoreAddThis Submit a Job Listing Assistant/Associate Priest Scottsdale, AZ Seminary of the Southwest announces appointment of two new full time faculty members Seminary of the Southwest Cathedral Dean Boise, ID Rector Shreveport, LA Rector Knoxville, TN Submit an Event Listing Rector (FT or PT) Indian River, MI Featured Jobs & Calls Join the Episcopal Diocese of Texas in Celebrating the Pauli Murray Feast Online Worship Service June 27 Rector Tampa, FL September 24, 2013 at 2:16 pm To our sisters and brothers in Nigeria, we give thanks for Archbishop’s safe release, and pray especially for peace in your country. Comments (1) Anglican Communion gives thanks for Nigerian archbishop’s release Press Release Service Canon for Family Ministry Jackson, MS Rector Belleville, IL Course Director Jerusalem, Israel Comments are closed. Curate (Associate & Priest-in-Charge) Traverse City, MI Submit a Press Release Ya no son extranjeros: Un diálogo acerca de inmigración Una conversación de Zoom June 22 @ 7 p.m. ET Rector Hopkinsville, KY Rector Albany, NY Anglican Communion The Church Investment Group Commends the Taskforce on the Theology of Money on its report, The Theology of Money and Investing as Doing Theology Church Investment Group [Anglican Communion News Service] The Anglican Communion has given thanks to God for the safe release of the Church of Nigeria’s second most senior cleric, Archbishop Ignatius Kattey.Provincial Dean Kattey and his wife were kidnapped more than a week ago by armed men near their residence in the southern city of Port Harcourt. Mrs Kattey was later abandoned by the kidnappers. Kattey is the archbishop of Niger Delta Province and the bishop of Niger Delta North.Statements of concern and prayers were issued around the Anglican Communion, not least from the Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby who has visited Nigeria many times.According to police spokesperson Angela Agabe, Kattey was released by his captors at around 6.30 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 14, behind a filling station at Eleme in Rivers State.One news report stated that the Ven. Israel Omosioni, archdeacon of Eleme Archdeaconary, told Nigerian journalists that the archbishop was looking “hale and hearty” despite his ordeal.Omosoni also revealed that his kidnappers had even given him N200 to to pay for his transport home.From the moment the news broke on Saturday, members of the Anglican Communion expressed thanks and relief for the archbishop’s safe return.A statement on the archbishop of Canterbury’s website said he “gave thanks” following the release of the Nigerian archbishop.Bishop of Cameroon Dibo Elango wrote, “His Grace… is back home. We thank God Almighty. All Glory to the Lord, in the name of our Lord Jesus. Amen.”Suffragan Bishop of the Diocese in Europe, the Rt. Rev. David Hamid, said, “We give thanks for his freedom and return to his wife, family and church community.”Expression of thanks to God that the cleric had been returned safely also appeared on a range of social media sites from Anglicans and Episcopalians in countries including Canada, the U.S., England and across the African continent. Youth Minister Lorton, VAlast_img read more

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Saldanha Bay bishop makes good strides on 800km pilgrimage

first_img Anglican Communion Bishop Diocesan Springfield, IL AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to PrintFriendlyPrintFriendlyShare to FacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterShare to EmailEmailShare to MoreAddThis Assistant/Associate Priest Scottsdale, AZ Submit a Job Listing Canon for Family Ministry Jackson, MS Associate Priest for Pastoral Care New York, NY Rector/Priest in Charge (PT) Lisbon, ME Submit an Event Listing Associate Rector for Family Ministries Anchorage, AK Rector Albany, NY Submit a Press Release Course Director Jerusalem, Israel Curate Diocese of Nebraska Priest Associate or Director of Adult Ministries Greenville, SC An Evening with Aliya Cycon Playing the Oud Lancaster, PA (and streaming online) July 3 @ 7 p.m. ET In-person Retreat: Thanksgiving Trinity Retreat Center (West Cornwall, CT) Nov. 24-28 Rector Smithfield, NC Virtual Episcopal Latino Ministry Competency Course Online Course Aug. 9-13 Press Release Service Rector Washington, DC Episcopal Church releases new prayer book translations into Spanish and French, solicits feedback Episcopal Church Office of Public Affairs Curate (Associate & Priest-in-Charge) Traverse City, MI An Evening with Presiding Bishop Curry and Iconographer Kelly Latimore Episcopal Migration Ministries via Zoom June 23 @ 6 p.m. ET Rector Belleville, IL Join the Episcopal Diocese of Texas in Celebrating the Pauli Murray Feast Online Worship Service June 27 TryTank Experimental Lab and York St. John University of England Launch Survey to Study the Impact of Covid-19 on the Episcopal Church TryTank Experimental Lab Seminary of the Southwest announces appointment of two new full time faculty members Seminary of the Southwest Family Ministry Coordinator Baton Rouge, LA Ya no son extranjeros: Un diálogo acerca de inmigración Una conversación de Zoom June 22 @ 7 p.m. ET Remember Holy Land Christians on Jerusalem Sunday, June 20 American Friends of the Episcopal Diocese of Jerusalem Saldanha Bay bishop makes good strides on 800km pilgrimage Rector Collierville, TN Rector Martinsville, VA Tags Rector Tampa, FL Episcopal Migration Ministries’ Virtual Prayer Vigil for World Refugee Day Facebook Live Prayer Vigil June 20 @ 7 p.m. ET By ACNS staffPosted Apr 7, 2014 Inaugural Diocesan Feast Day Celebrating Juneteenth San Francisco, CA (and livestream) June 19 @ 2 p.m. PT The Church Pension Fund Invests $20 Million in Impact Investment Fund Designed to Preserve Workforce Housing Communities Nationwide Church Pension Group Rector and Chaplain Eugene, OR The Church Investment Group Commends the Taskforce on the Theology of Money on its report, The Theology of Money and Investing as Doing Theology Church Investment Group Rector Hopkinsville, KY Director of Music Morristown, NJ Africa, Virtual Celebration of the Jerusalem Princess Basma Center Zoom Conversation June 19 @ 12 p.m. ET Featured Jobs & Calls En route from Wellington to Simonsvlei – a happy part of the big crowd walking with us from Northpine band of pilgrims and supporters. Photo: Diocese of Saldanha Bay[Anglican Communion News Service] Bishop Raphael Hess, of Southern Africa’s Saldanha Bay diocese is making good strides on his 800km pilgrimage from one end of the diocese to the other.The journey, which he is undertaking during Lent, touches each of the six Archdeaconries that make up the diocese. The Bishop has been sleeping in villages along the way, listening to and engaging with parishioners as he journeys.His route takes him from Malmesbury to Wellington, through Paarl, along the byways to Klapmuts, Northpine, Kraaifontein and Bellville; then continuing through the city streets to Goodwood, Table View and Atlantis and finally out into the country as he heads up the West Coast of South Africa meeting all whose homes are the villages, fishing communities and farm lands.The Bishop said, “I want to communicate to all within our Diocese along its length and breadth, walking through the dust, that this Pilgrimage invites us to strip ourselves of all that divides us, to be able to walk on the earth and in this instance one of the oldest parts of our planet, recalling the ancient Khoi and San people, having lived in these parts from time immemorial. This Pilgrimage of possibilities offers me and indeed all of us keeping the Holy Season of Lent, a time to walk, listen, pray and reflect in the silence of the land, the sea and the wind.”Canon David Mills who has been reporting on the pilgrimage said the journey has indeed been a blessed one thus far with many opportunities for the bishop and his team to learn more about the lives of those in the diocese.He recounted one encounter between the Bishop and fisherman on the road to Lamberts Bay: “On the road between Elandsbaai and Lamberts Bay the Bishop encountered a fishing boat, complete with crew on the road!“The trailer carrying the boat had a faulty wheel thus allowing a God-given opportunity for Bishop Raphael to introduce himself and speak to the fishermen about their life and the challenges facing them.“It was made clear to the Bishop that while none of the fishermen had licenses to fish, nevertheless they had to continue fishing to put food on the table for their families. Bishop Raphael identified with their dilemma and expressed compassion for their predicament – he committed himself totake this concern further in dialogue with the relevant authorities.”The pilgrimage, called a “Lenten Pilgrimage of Possibilities”, started on Ash Wednesday, March 5, and will end on Easter Sunday, April 20, at an early morning service in the coastal village of Port Nolloth just south of the South African – Namibian border.During the pilgrimage, hundreds of the estimated 150,000 Anglicans living in the region are expected to participate in the pilgrimage, accompanying the Bishop on a leg of the journey or simply by raising funds through sponsoring the 800km walk. Each day, pilgrims are walking some 20kms starting and ending with prayers for the people and needs of the areas through which they walk.Meetings in local churches and with community leaders will also take place. During Holy Week, Ordinands from the diocese will join the Bishop on his pilgrimage as he completes the final 150km between O’Kiep and Port Nolloth.Any sponsorship money raised by the Bishop or others on the walk will go towards the development of people in rural areas of the diocese, as well as towards the work of theological education for our future generations of laity, deacons and priests. Featured Events Episcopal Charities of the Diocese of New York Hires Reverend Kevin W. VanHook, II as Executive Director Episcopal Charities of the Diocese of New York Assistant/Associate Rector Morristown, NJ Rector (FT or PT) Indian River, MI Missioner for Disaster Resilience Sacramento, CA This Summer’s Anti-Racism Training Online Course (Diocese of New Jersey) June 18-July 16 Rector Knoxville, TN Youth Minister Lorton, VA Cathedral Dean Boise, ID Rector Bath, NC Rector Pittsburgh, PA Director of Administration & Finance Atlanta, GA Associate Rector Columbus, GA New Berrigan Book With Episcopal Roots Cascade Books Rector Shreveport, LA Assistant/Associate Rector Washington, DC Priest-in-Charge Lebanon, OHlast_img read more

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