Both Rev. Jo Rand and Rev. Martyn Coe have been warned about a new type of scam which has sprung up recently.

“Church members are receiving emails, purporting to be from known ministers, asking them to make an online purchase - e.g. an Amazon gift voucher - on the minister's behalf, because (s)he is too busy to buy a present for a family member.

There are some variants on this, but the basic point is asking people to buy something online on behalf of a minister.

We've received a warning from our colleagues in the Diocese of Oxford, but before this came through, two members of one of our own churches were targeted by this fraud, using a minister's name. The sending email wasn't one of ours.

Please warn people about this, and tell them that if they are ever approached unexpectedly to help a minister purchase something then the email is almost certainly an attempted fraud.”

If in any doubt about whether an email from a minister is genuine, call them to check.  Numbers are available here.