'I nearly burst into tears' - Norfolk's first woman Bishop tells of shock
- Credit: Sonya Duncan
Norfolk's first woman bishop has said its an enormous privilege to be "carrying the torch" for a more diverse church following the historic announcement.
The Venerable Dr Jane Steen, who is currently the Archdeacon of Southwark, will be the next Bishop of Lynn.
The new bishop, who has previously lived in Cambridge, said she had no thought of ever working in Norfolk but that the appointment made her heart sing and was "purely serendipity", adding that she looked forward to listening and learning from local communities and clergy.
Dr Steen, who was among the first group of people studying for the ministry where women could be ordained a priest, said she was overwhelmed by the appointment, and that other women clergy and lay women were "really encouraged".
She said: "I nearly burst into tears when I was telling people about it.
"I think one of the hallmarks of our time is that both in the church and more widely we just have to accept we are a very diverse population and church, and there is gifting.
You may also want to watch:
"There should therefore be opportunity from people of all walks of life, and we shouldn't judge people or make prior assessment on people's gender, skin colour, cultural background or social class.
"It's a privilege to carry the torch for that.
- 1 Tax inspectors probe 240 furlough fraud cases in Norfolk and Suffolk
- 2 Norfolk campsite voted third best in UK
- 3 Driver in hospital after BMW car ends up in ditch
- 4 'Very small' number of Indian Covid variant cases in Norfolk
- 5 Lorry driver admits causing deaths of two people in A47 crash
- 6 Social distancing stops fish and chip shop's restaurant opening on May 17
- 7 Norfolk lorry drivers clocked for nearly 200 traffic offences in three days
- 8 9 pubs and restaurants which have had lockdown makeovers
- 9 Indian variant could hamper roadmap, Norfolk health expert says
- 10 Hospital opens new £625,000 cancer wellbeing and support centre
"I am glad to say now there are other women bishops - it's becoming more normal - just as black and minority ethnic people I hope will be coming through the church more."
The new bishop hopes to tackle poverty of opportunity in education and diversity, adding that she was excited by the quality of CofE schools in the county.
Dr Steen, who will move to Dereham with her husband Pip, said outside of the ministry she looked forward to a different way of life and spending more time outdoors on walks and cycling.
She toured the Lynn Archdeaconry on Wednesday, April 28 with visits to King’s Lynn Minster, a smallholding near Dereham, a coastal parish church lunch club on the North Norfolk coast, ending with attendance at evensong at Norwich Cathedral.