THREE new suffragan bishops were announced in the past week, for the sees of Stepney, Huntingdon, and Shrewsbury. All three have served as advisers in women’s ministry.
On Tuesday, it was announced that the Area Bishop of Stepney, in London diocese, is to be the Archdeacon of Portsdown, the Ven. Dr Joanne Grenfell. Canon Dagmar Winter, the Rector of Hexham Abbey, is to be the next Bishop of Huntingdon; and the Archdeacon of York, the Ven. Sarah Bullock is to be the Area Bishop of Shrewsbury, in Lichfield diocese.
Archdeacon Bullock will be the first woman to serve as a bishop in Lichfield diocese. She was ordained in 1993 and held various posts in Manchester diocese, including an honorary canonry of Manchester Cathedral, until 2013, when she became Archdeacon of York.
The Bishop of Lichfield, Dr Michael Ipgrave, said: “I know that in her we will be welcoming a caring and prayerful pastor, with an imaginative and energetic commitment to mission, a proven readiness to work with ecumenical and community partners in building up community, and a fine mind and warm heart firmly grounded in a deep Christian faith.”
Dr Grenfell, a former Church Times diarist, was ordained in 2000, and began her ministerial life in Liverpool diocese, before spending ten years in Sheffield diocese from 2003 until 2013. Here, she held posts including Diocesan Director of Ordinands and Dean of Women’s Ministry. In 2013, she was appointed Archdeacon of Portsdown, in Portsmouth diocese. Before ordination, she was a lecturer in English at Oriel College, Oxford.
She said: “There are particular opportunities and challenges here — empowering young people, celebrating each other’s many gifts, seeking the common good, working across different communities.”
Canon Winter was ordained in 1997 in Rochester diocese, and will be the first female bishop in Ely diocese. Since 1999, she has held posts in Newcastle diocese, including Bishop’s Adviser for Women in Ministry. She has been an honorary canon of Newcastle Cathedral since 2011.
She said: “I have a particular passion for rural and market town ministry, and I am impressed with the diocesan vision and will to grasp the great opportunities there are.”
The Bishop of Ely, the Rt Revd Stephen Conway, said: “I admire what she has contributed both locally and nationally to the Church’s engagement with rural life.”
Canon Winter has been a member of General Synod since 2005, has served on the Rural Group and the Mission and Public Affairs Committee of the Church of England, and is currently on the Meissen Committee.