Dozen bishops join 900 to celebrate in Suffolk
Up to 900 people joined 12 bishops and a host of civic guests for the finale event celebrating the centenary year of the Church of England’s St Edmundsbury and Ipswich Diocese.
People from throughout Suffolk came together to give thanks for the diocese’s shared history and heritage, and to look forward to the future during a service filled with joy and hope, at St Edmundsbury Cathedral in Bury St Edmunds on November 23.
The service began with a procession of 200 clergy, civic leaders, mayors, judges and dignitaries and during the service there was prayer, readings, music, singing of the Centenary African Children’s song and dancing performed by children from across Suffolk.
The Very Revd Dr Frances Ward, Dean of the cathedral, said: “It's been a tremendous year, with the Archbishop's visit in March and with pilgrimages throughout Suffolk and further afield, to the Holy Land, Santiago de Compostella in Spain, and to Tanzania.
“Individuals and churches have deepened their faith in Jesus Christ as they have reflected upon what it means to journey in love in this wonderful county of Suffolk.”
The Rt Revd Dr David Thomson, Acting Bishop of St Edmundsbury and Ipswich, said the wonderful Celebration Service at the Cathedral was a perfect end to the Centenary Celebrations. “This is a time for looking forward as well as back. A highlight of the service was the bishops offering anointing to all, for future ministry and service. It was a very moving and special way to prepare for a new shared future with a new bishop.
“Our diocese was formed out of those of Norwich and Ely and the present bishops of those joined with us to read from our founding charter and be interviewed about their hopes for the next 100 years of the Church.”
The 12 Bishops in attendance included the Rt Revd Bishop Graham James from Norwich and rhe Rt Revd Bishop Stephen Conway from Ely attended too, along with Archdeacons and other senior clergy.
Pictured above are the Rt Revd Dr David Thomson, Acting Bishop of St Edmundsbury and Ipswich, with The Very Revd Dr Frances Ward, Dean of St Edmundsbury Cathedral in Bury St Edmunds, and senior clergy colleagues, past and present including Bishops and Archdeacons at the service in Bury St Edmunds.