Bishop Martyn became the seventh Bishop of Leicester in May 2016. He moved to Leicester from Gloucester where he had been Bishop of Tewkesbury since 2013.
He has recently published a video about the Shaped By God Together process which the diocese embarked upon in 2020 and will continue on until 2026, reshaping in to Minster Communities which help each parish, including their fresh expressions of Church and church schools to better live out their Everyday Faith in their communities.
He entered the House of Lords in December 2022.
He is currently undertaking a Prayer Pilgrimage across our diocese during Lent 2023.
He is also the lead Bishop for Lay Ministry in the Church of England, taking a proactive role in the development of and championing a wide range of ministry from licensed roles such as Readers and Pioneers, to youth and children and families workers.
He is Chair of the Archbishops’ College of Evangelists and is a member of the Church commissioners’ Ministry Council and is the Bishop Protector of the Third Order of St Francis. He is also the Abbot of the Community of the Tree of Life which he established in the diocese in 2018.
You can read about his work renewing the vision for lay ministry by clicking here and see some of his recent publications by clicking on the links below. In addition, you can see news stories relating to Bishop Martyn incuding a General Synod amendment he led to encourage the Church of England to apologise for racism and when he 'Took The Knee' in support of the Black Lives Matter movement by clicking here and you can read more about recent activities in his Latest News section.
In addition, you can click on the headings below to read more about two of his recent publications:
Recent videos by the Bishop of Leicester include:
- An interview with Chris Thompson for God Stories Today with some of his personal stories of everyday faith, including his journey to ordination, giving up a job in the law courts to be a church volunteer and how he has heard and seen God's call in his and other people's lives.
- His Easter message for 2022, recorded with the new Bishop of Loughborough, which you can watch here.
- He also recorded three brief video reflections on 2 Corinthians 1v1-11 for an online Diocesan Retreat in 2021 which you can watch here.
- He published weekly videos during the first half of the COVID-19 pandemic, they can all be viewed on the YouTube playlist here and the following is one example:
Within the Diocese of Leicester Bishop Martyn continues to lead a dynamic programme of work both helping develop deeper discipleship of Christians in our churches and schools as well as addressing issues faced by our church communities.
- He is committed to nurturing the diocesan strategy Shaped by God which has grown to further encourage and help Christians in churches, schools and fresh expressions of Church to support and resource their Everyday Faith
- Under his leadership, we have adopted five strategic priorities for the diocese in our common life together. They arise out of our diocesan response to the 3 Key Questions (depth of discipleship, numbers of disciples, loving service of the world). Not every church community or school will embody all five of these priorities, but every church is being asked to consider how they are paying attention to them as they ‘seek the Kingdom of God’ in their ‘Everyday Faith’. You can read more about them here.
- Ongoing and recent projects in the diocese include:
Bishop Martyn is a major champion of safeguarding within the diocese, leading an annual thanksgiving service for Safeguarding Coordinators from our churches and personally encouraging each of us to recognize that safeguarding of children and vulnerable adults must be at the heart of our ministry (link to Safeguarding web pages with Martyn’s video)
He is committed to the continuing work of the St Philips Centre in Leicester, which helps churches, schools and communities of different cultures, of all faiths and none, to learn to live well together
As part of our focus on Reconciling Communities, he is also a supporter of the many social action projects led and backed by churches and volunteers across the diocese such as the weekly SoundCafe Leicester project, which helps vulnerable people or those who have experienced homelessness. He is Patron of SoundCafe and spoke to us for this video about his Lent Appeal 2019.
Martyn was ordained suffragan bishop in 2013, serving in the Diocese of Gloucester until 2016 when he became Bishop of Leicester just as Leicester City Football Club became Champions of the Premier League.
He has a background in the world church having been born in Indonesia and later working in West Africa. His love of crossing cultures has also taken him to London, Northumberland and Sheffield, as well as many visits to other parts of the world.
He studied Chemistry at the University of Sheffield before working with the Crown Prosecution Service. He then trained for ministry in the Church of England at Wycliffe Hall in Oxford, before returning to South Yorkshire to serve his Curacy in Rotherham. He and his wife Lynn travelled to Guinea in West Africa to work with the local church – Martyn as Vicar and Diocesan Youth Chaplain, Lynn as a primary health care worker.
On returning to the UK, Martyn became Vicar of Christ Church Pitsmoor in Sheffield and later Area Dean of Ecclesfield. He was appointed Archdeacon of Sheffield and Rotherham in 2010 and was awarded an MA from Durham University in 2012.
Martyn has written a number of Grove booklets on coaching, leadership and mission partnerships. He has contributed to the Church of England’s Pilgrim Course and Daily Reflections. He is a past chair of Trustees of Church Pastoral Aid Society and also Redcliffe College.
His interests include sport – supporting Leicester City (as well as Sheffield United!) and Leicester Tigers; music – an eclectic taste from Dire Straits to Chopin; and family holidays with his wife and three children usually involve camping and canoeing.
You can read news stories relating to Bishop Martyn by clicking here.
Bishop's Blog, Talks, and Publications
Here you can check out all of Bishop Martyn's weekly videos during the pandemic.