The Bishop of Wolverhampton announced his retirement today after 13 years in the post.
The Rt Rev Michael Bourke, aged 65, said he wanted to pursue other interests and felt it was time for someone younger and with fresh ideas to step into his shoes.
Bishop Bourke said the main challenge which remained in the partly rural, partly urban diocese was to spread the faith and attract people back into the Church.
"We are in an age where religion is more relevant than for a long time," he said. "People realise that without the religious values of wisdom and humility there is not much hope.
"But we are living in an individualistic and consumer-based society where people are reluctant to commit and give themselves in a sustained way."
The biggest issue facing humanity, he said, was the environment.
"Unless we crack this one, our descendants will be in trouble. One of the things I've tried to do is introduce new ways of keeping Lent.
"Over the last two or three years I've lived on the minimum wage and tried to cycle instead of going by car, and tried to tackle some of the lifestyle things. That is difficult and I haven't really managed to do it."
Bishop Bourke said he planned to spend more time with his family, including
his two young grandchildren.
He said he did not plan to take up another position within the clergy, but did not anticipate being lost for things to do.
"I won't miss the post or the emails, but I will miss the fantastic and hugely competent people I work with," he said. "I love the diversity of the diocese.
"My hobby is astronomy and on a fine evening I'm looking forward to using my telescope."
He will remain the Bishop until the end of the year.