History was made as the new Bishop of Dover was formally welcomed into her post today.
The Rt Rev Rose Hudson-Wilkin took part in the special service to mark the occasion at St Paul’s Cathedral in London.
She becomes the first black woman bishop and will be installed in a follow-up ceremony at Canterbury Cathedral on Saturday, November 30.
The Rev Hudson-Wilkin said: “Beginning this new ministry, there is a sense of awe in it all.
“But also something refreshing about being open to the new things that God has in store – not just for me as a person taking on this new leadership role, but for our diocese as a whole.
“I’m excited – I’ve got lots of new people to meet, to get to know, and that fills me with joy.”
Welcoming the appointment the Archbishop of Canterbury, the Most Rev Justin Welby, said: “When in October Rose stepped down as Chaplain to the Speaker, the tributes from all sides showed her pastoral, prophetic and faith-sharing gifts.
“Even in times of division she was a point of unity and hope, to those of any or no faith.
“We welcome her warmly confident that God, who has led her this far, will walk with her and speak through her.”
The sermon was delivered by the Most Rev John Sentamu, the Archbishop of York, and the Rt Rev Olivia Graham was also made Bishop of Reading.
The Bishop of Dover is the suffragan Bishop in the Diocese of Canterbury and holds additional delegated responsibilities for oversight of the Canterbury Diocese.
Rev Hudson-Wilkin had been Chaplain to the Speaker of the House of Commons for nine years and is also former Chaplain to the Queen.
She replaces, as Bishop of Dover, the Rt Rev Trevor Willmott, who had the post for 10 years and retired on May 12 this year.
By Sam Lennonslennon@thekmgroup.co.uk
First Published: 17:23, 19 November 2019