Canon Adrian Slade, the Gloucester Diocese's Director of Social Responsibility for 27 years, is retiring. I came across him first in connection with the then St George's Association, run by a magnificently eccentric nun, who found Adrian's brusque, often sardonic style a challenge. In many ways, his job description required him to get under people's skin - to afflict the comfortable - and it's something he's been good at. But there's no gainsaying his stalwart work over the decades in many areas with which the church isn't normally thought to be associated. These areas have long included environmental responsibility: so it was appropriate that Judy Howard (who on Tuesday convened a group of us to thank Adrian, and wish him well) should present him with sunflowers planted in soil which we had all brought along from our own gardens - all except me: I was on the bus to Gloucester for the lunch (at the Friendship Café) before I remembered.