A Norwich church is thought to have become the first in England to own a pub after the vicar decided it was the best way to spread the Word.
St Thomas’s Church in Norwich bought the pub next door for £500,000 after the Reverend Ian Dyble remembered seeing a vicar behind a bar many years earlier.
“It was in the Lake District on holiday, in my pre-vicar days. I remember thinking what a good idea it was to engage in the community in that way, because as we all know, people’s interest in church is waning. It’s a way for us to reach out into the community,” he said.
Fittingly named The Mitre, the pub was put up for sale 18 months ago after a spell as a Chinese takeaway and bought by the church after a fundraising drive.
But Mr Dyble insists alcohol is only a very small part of the initiative.
“It’s also for people’s perception of the Church to be changed. I would hope it would be a pleasant surprise for people. Jesus turned water into wine, he did it at a wedding party.”
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SOURCE: The Telegraph