Bishop’s ashes buried during Norwich service

The ashes of East Anglia's Roman Catholic Bishop who lost his six-year battle against prostate cancer last year were buried during a special ceremony beginning at noon yesterday.

About 200 people attended the Cathedral of St John the Baptist in Norwich from all parts of the diocese for the service led by diocesan administrator Fr David Bagstaff.

Bishop Michael Evans died last July at the age of 59 after a long battle against the disease.

The internment of his ashes, which took place in the new chapel of the saints of East Anglia at the eastern end of the Earlham Road cathedral, had been requested by the bishop.

The burial had been delayed so that a memorial stone could be made and to gain permission from Church authorities.

Bishop Michael had been in post for just over two years before he spoke in November 2005 about his cancer.

He had been appointed by Pope John Paul II as the third Bishop of East Anglia on St Valentine's Day in 2003.

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His ashes were buried in front of an icon of Felix, a 7th Century bishop credited with bringing Christianity to East Anglia.

The public had been invited to the internment.

The funeral last summer saw more than 1,700 people attend the cathedral in what was thought to be the biggest congregation in its 101-year history.

At Bishop Michael's death two personal messages had been sent from the Vatican, one from Pope Benedict XVI paying tribute to his work in East Anglia.

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