New priests and deacons will serve communities right across Suffolk
- Credit: Archant
More than 30 men and women aged from their 20s to their 60s are devoting their lives to serving communities across Suffolk after becoming priests and deacons.
Last weekend saw another large intake of Church of England clergy from towns and villages in the county ordained at St Edmundsbury Cathedral in Bury St Edmunds, during eight ordination services.
Because of Covid-19 restrictions, the congregation had to be limited at each service to 30 people and so the Rt Rev Martin Seeley, Bishop of the Diocese of St Edmundsbury and Ipswich, and the Rt Rev Dr Mike Harrison, Bishop of Dunwich, ordained four candidates at a time, witnessed by their close family.
Bury St Edmunds, Blyth Valley, Ipswich, Woodbridge, Newmarket and Sudbury, are among the many different communities represented by the newly-appointed clergy who were ordained at the cathedral on September 5 and September 6.
Bishop Martin said: ‘‘Thirty-four men and women are setting out on a new stage in their life of Christian service in Suffolk, giving their lives in a new way in their love of God and neighbour.
“We are delighted to welcome these devoted clergy ageing from their 20s to 60s with a huge variety of experience from all walks of life into these important roles.
“They will make a difference to the lives of many people undergoing many challenges during the impact of the current pandemic and beyond.’’
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Bishop Mike said: “They will be working in local churches up and down Suffolk, contributing to the fabric of local community life in a host of different ways, from phone trees to food banks, taking services to town pastors, pop-up shops to prayer and much besides.”
The Very Rev Joe Hawes, Dean of St Edmundsbury Cathedral, added: ’’The candidates for ordination are a sign that The Spirit continues, in challenging times, to work in the hearts of men and women throughout Suffolk, to offer their lives in service, as stewards, sentinels, shepherds, servants.
“Every ordination is a challenge to the forces of indifference, selfishness and cynicism in our society, a leap of faith, offered in hope and an expression of the deep love God has for the world.”
Ordained include new clergy for Bury St Edmunds, Blyth Valley, Ipswich, Woodbridge, Newmarket and Sudbury
Bishop Martin ordained the following as priests during services at St Edmundsbury Cathedral: Susan Allison, Newmarket All Saints; Caroline Butcher, Mildenhall; Thomas Mumford, Sudbury St Gregory with St Peter and Chilton; Kathleen Palmer, Brandon; Sarah du Boulay, Needham Market with Badley; Sarah Geilesky, Bury St Edmunds St James and St Edmund; Lesley Norburn, The Blackbourn Team; Judith Offord, The Chadbrook Benefice; and Miriam Webb, The Lark Valley Benefice and The North Bury Team Ministry.
Linda Berry, The Blyth Valley Team Ministry, was ordained priest at St Mary the Virgin, Huntingfield, on August 5.
The following were ordained as priests by Bishop Mike: Amy Key, Ipswich St Augustine; Victor McCracken, Athelington, Denham, Horham, Hoxne, Redlingfield, Syleham and Wingfield; Andrew Williams, St Mary and St Peter District Church, Bury St Edmunds, Virginia (Gini) Williams, Sancroft; Alison Alder, The Blyth Valley Team Ministry; Brian Jolley,The Yoxmere Benefice; and James Marston, Alde Sandlings.
Bishop Martin ordained the following as deacons: Graham Naylor, Lavenham with Preston; Julia Perkins, Glemsford, Hartest with Boxted, Somerton and Stanstead; Richard Stainer, Bradfield St Clare, Bradfield St George with Little Whelnetham, Cockfield, Felsham and Gedding; Nicola Tindall, Higham, Holton St Mary, Raydon and Stratford St Mary; Maureen Bonsall, Whitton with Thurleston and Akenham; Kiran Lotay, Ipswich All Hallows; Robert Molton, Newmarket All Saints and the Benefice of Tuddenham with Cavenham, Herringswell and Red Lodge; Laura Pope, Bury St Edmunds St Mary with St Peter; and Matthew Key, Ipswich St Augustine.
The following were ordained as deacons by Bishop Mike: Oliver Kemsley, Alde River Benefice; Christine Smart, Four Rivers Benefice; William Sokolis, Alde River Benefice; Andrew Todd, Woodbridge St Mary; Mark Bee, Beccles St Michael and St Luke; Tracey James, Debenham and Helmingham; Sally Letman, Capel St Mary with Little Wenham and Great Wenham; and Lauren Moore, South Hartismere.