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UK: Two New Provincial Episcopal Visitors Announced

UK: Two New Provincial Episcopal Visitors Announced

Forward in Faith UK
May 5, 2011

Forward in Faith is delighted to welcome the announcement made today that the next Bishop of Ebbsfleet is to be the Revd Dr Jonathan Baker ssc, Principal of Pusey House, Oxford and Secretary of Forward in Faith, and that the next Bishop of Richborough is to be the Revd Norman Banks ssc, Vicar of Walsingham, Houghton and Barsham, Rural Dean of Burnham and Walsingham and Chaplain to Her Majesty the Queen.

We look forward to their episcopal ordinations in Southwark Cathedral on 16 June and, in the meantime, assure them of our prayers, as they prepare for their future ministries amongst us.

*****

Lambeth Palace has issued the following press release: New Provincial Episcopal Visitors announced

Downing Street has today announced the appointment of the Reverend Jonathan Baker as Bishop of Ebbsfleet and the Reverend Norman Banks as the Bishop of Richborough, both of whom will be consecrated at a service at Southwark Cathedral on 16th June.

In line with the 1993 Act of Synod, the Archbishop of Canterbury has commissioned the Provincial Episcopal Visitors to work with the diocesan bishops to provide extended pastoral care and sacramental ministry, as well as acting as spokesmen and advisors, to ensure that 'the integrity of differing beliefs and positions concerning the ordination of women to the priesthood should be mutually recognised and respected'.

The Revd Jonathan Baker who is currently Principal of Pusey House succeeds Bishop Andrew Burnham as Bishop of Ebbsfleet.

Commenting on his appointment, Jonathan Baker said:

'The appointment of two new PEVs for the Southern Province is a real sign of commitment by the Church of England to the growth and renewal of every aspect of its common life, particularly its catholic tradition which I know and love. I look forward immensely to serving as Bishop of Ebbsfleet and to leading the clergy and lay people in my care to have confidence in their faith and in proclaiming the Gospel to all.'

The Revd Norman Banks who is currently Vicar of Walsingham, Houghton and Barsham, succeeds Bishop Keith Newton as Bishop of Richborough.

Commenting on his appointment, Norman Banks said:

'One of the real pleasures and privileges of being Vicar of S. Mary's is getting to know so many of the people who visit Walsingham regularly and make the Parish Church part of their pilgrimage. I am both delighted and honoured that for those in the Richborough area I am about to have the opportunity and privilege of becoming their bishop and visiting them where they regularly worship. From the many recent conversations I have had, I believe that there is real desire across the Church of England to find a way for us to hold together with integrity and generosity. I hope the appointment of two new PEV's will be seen as both 'gift' and 'sign' at this crucial time in the life of our Church.'

Welcoming the news, Dr Williams said:

'I am very happy to welcome two such faithful and gifted priests as colleagues. They are taking up a very demanding pastoral ministry at a time of much upheaval and uncertainty, and will need our prayers and friendship as we work in the Church of England for a future in which there is full mutual respect and constructive work in mission to be undertaken together.

I am deeply grateful to those who have exercised pastoral care for traditionalist priests and parishes in recent months, especially Bishops John Ford, Mark Sowerby and Lindsay Urwin.'

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A Statement issued by the Master General of The Society of the Holy Cross

Prebendary David Houlding ssc The Society of the Holy Cross is delighted by the appointment of two of its Brethren to the vacant sees of Ebbsfleet and Richborough. Both priests, Fr Jonathan Baker and Fr Norman Banks are men of the utmost integrity and have been both in their different ways in the forefront of our catholic witness in the Church of England. We look forward to welcoming them wholeheartedly on 16th June at the Ordination in Southwark Cathedral. Their appointments will bring joy and a renewed sense of confidence to many, who will look to them to give to the whole of the Church of England an understanding and recognition of its Catholic identity.

We are grateful to the Archbishop of Canterbury for all the trouble and care he has taken over recent months to secure this happening. The Church of England will indeed be fortunate to have two such good pastors in its episcopate.

David Houlding SSC

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A Statement from Mgr Andrew Burnham

I am delighted to hear that the Revd Dr Jonathan Baker, Principal of Pusey House, is my successor as Bishop of Ebbsfleet. He will be the fourth bishop since the see was founded seventeen years ago, in 1994.

Dr Baker is an accomplished scholar, and teacher, as well as having gained experience as a parish priest in inner-city Reading. He will bring many gifts to the work of bishop. It gives me great joy and comfort to see that the parishes and people that are continuing to look to the Bishop of Ebbsfleet are in such capable hands. I hope, however, that none will lose sight of the hope and imperative of finding unity in the one, holy, catholic and apostolic Church.

Andrew Burnham
Bishop of Ebbsfleet, 2000-2010

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