New ministry for East Norfolk vicar
2010: After more than a decade sharing her congregation’s joys and sorrows, Great Yarmouth vicar Revd Irene Knowles is preparing for a new ministry.
Mrs Knowles (pictured right) is set to take up the post of rector to the Pilgrim Benefice in south Norfolk in February.
Her husband, the Rev Richard Knowles, will also be retiring early as rector of St John and St James churches in south Yarmouth due to ill health.
The couple moved to Yarmouth more than 11 years ago when Mrs Knowles was ordained. In her role as vicar in the Great Yarmouth team ministry, and rural dean of Yarmouth, she has played a pivotal role in the life of the borough. Her responsibilities included chaplaincy work for the police, Royal British Legion, Great Yarmouth and Waveney Mental Health Trust and the James Paget University Hospital.
Currently leading the congregation at St Mary’s, in Southtown, and St Luke’s, Cobholm, she will be swapping urban life for quiet country villages.
Mrs Knowles said: “I have been here for 11 and a half years so it has been a big part in my life. I grew up in the country, so I am not a stranger to rural life. My work as a rural dean has also taken in the parishes from Belton right through Yarmouth to the Fleggs.
“I have enjoyed the variety of ministry in Yarmouth – life here is very varied, there is affluence and poverty. During my time we received many asylum seekers and migrant workers, which was something of a cultural change. It has been a privilege to serve in the community sharing people’s greatest joys and sadnesses.”
Mrs Knowles, 62, decided to take up her new post at the invitation of the Bishop of Thetford and application to the Pilgrim Benefice.
Click here to read the rest of the article on the Great Yarmouth Mercury website