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Bishop of Argyll & The Isles dies, aged 66, after short illness

25 September 2023

Tom Campbell

The Bishop of Argyll & The Isles, Dr Keith Riglin, at his consecration in May 2021

The Bishop of Argyll & The Isles, Dr Keith Riglin, at his consecration in May 2021

THE Bishop of Argyll & The Isles, Dr Keith Riglin, has died after a short illness, the Scottish Episcopal Church has announced.

Dr Riglin, who was 66, died on Sunday, with his family beside him, at the Royal Alexandra Hospital, in Paisley.

The Primus of the Scottish Episcopal Church, the Most Revd Mark Strange, has paid tribute to Dr Riglin. “Bishop Keith first came to the Scottish Episcopal Church in 2012 as part of a long journey through ordained ministry across the UK. He brought many gifts to the Church, primarily the joy he took in his ministry, as well as his love of engaging everyone he met in conversation, which brought him close to so many of us.

“Today, we grieve for our Brother in Christ, and we ask for your prayers for Bishop Keith’s wife, Jen, and for his family and loved ones, as well as the congregations, clergy, leaders and staff of the Diocese of Argyll & The Isles.”

Dr Riglin’s ministry began in the Baptist Church, from 1983 until 1996, and continued in the United Reformed Church, until 2008, when he was ordained deacon and priest in the Church of England. He served his title at St Clement’s, Notting Dale, in London, before serving in the diocese of Argyll & The Isles.

In 2012, he was appointed Chaplain of King’s College, London, a post he held until 2021, during which time he also served as Assistant Dean (2017-20) and Vice-Dean (2020-21). From 2016 to 2019, he was a visiting lecturer in the university’s department of theology and religious studies; he remained a visiting Research Fellow until his death.

He also served as Director of Ordinands for the Two Cities area, in London diocese, from 2019 until 2021, and served as an NSM. In 2020, he was appointed an Honorary Canon of St John’s Cathedral, Oban.

Dr Riglin was consecrated bishop in St John’s Cathedral, Oban, on 1 May 2021.

The Bishop of London, the Rt Revd Sarah Mullally, was among those who paid tribute to Dr Riglin on social media. “Bishop Keith was a friend to many in London [diocese] and we were grateful for his ministry and friendship,” she wrote. “Our sympathy and prayers are with Jen, his family, all at Wesley’s Chapel [where his wife, Jen, is Superintendent Minister] and the Diocese of Argyll and the Isles. May he rest in peace and rise in glory.”

The Bishop of Edinburgh, Dr John Armes, said in a statement: “I so enjoyed knowing +Keith and being alongside him in the College of Bishops, his wit, his intelligence and his infectious delight in his episcopal calling.

“I know I shall take some time to comprehend that his time with us has ended so soon. I commend +Keith to the gracious care of our threefold God, to whom his life was devoted and in whom he found creation, salvation and inspiration, and I give thanks that his ministry has been a blessing for so many. May we find hope and comfort in the faith we share, and the promise of eternal life in Christ Jesus.”

Obituary to follow

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