Vale, Bernard Thorogood

Vale, Bernard Thorogood

Uniting Church minister, missionary, and renowned theologian Rev. Bernard Thorogood passed away on Thursday, 30 April. He was 92 years old.

Originally from the United Kingdom, Rev. Thorogood was General Secretary of the United Reformed Church (URC) from 1980 to 1992. Prior to that, served as General Secretary of Council World Mission (CWM) from 1970 to 1980, and through most of the 1950s and 1960s was a missionary in the Pacific islands.

 Rev. John Proctor is the General Secretary of the URC.

“Bernard Thorogood made an enormous contribution as a Christian leader, in the URC, in ecumenical life in the UK, and in the wide networks of the world church,” Rev. Proctor said.

“He wrote with wisdom and depth – theology, poetry, fiction. He was an able visual artist. Yet through it all he had a heart for people, meeting individuals with care and interest, supporting many, sharing deeply in church life at every level.”

“He was a multi-talented gentle giant – pastor, administrator, thinker – skilled in understanding how the gospel interacted with many cultures. His long missionary experience in the Pacific paved the way for him to become a key player in the transition from a Western dominated world church to a truly global communion – which is what CWM became under his visionary guidance in the 1970s.”

During his time living in Sydney, Bernard became a Uniting Church minister. He  was awarded an OBE and became a Doctor of Divinity in 1992.

Rev. Thorogood was the author of numerous books. These include: Risen TodayThe Flag and the CrossLetters to PaulOne WindMany FlamesOur Father’s HouseOld Grey Prayers, and A Guide to Amos. He also edited a history of the London Missionary Society, Gales of Change.

In 2017, he was  one of the Uniting Church ministers who gathered to share their experience of ordained ministry at the UTalk event.

Insights sends condolences to Bernard Thorogood’s family and friends.


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