23 October 2018   |  Last Updated 18-12-2014 11:33

      Wednesday 17, December 2014

      Local Reverend becomes first female Bishop

      first female bishop
      The Church of England has named its first female Bishop after just a month since the change to the Code of Canon Law.

      Revd Libby Lane, a parish priest in the diocese of Chester, has been appointed the post of suffragan (assistant) bishop of Stockport, ending centuries of a predominantly male run church.

      Since 2007, Mrs Lane has been the vicar at both St Peter's Hale and St Elizabeth's Ashley, and has over 20 years experience within the Church, becoming a deacon in 1993 and a priest in 1994; the same year that legislation was passed allowing women to be ordained as priests.

      Revd Georgina Watmore, curate for St Peter's Hale, and close friend of Mrs Lane's, said it's put her "on an absolute high today".

      "She is a remarkable woman and I've no doubt that she'll be an outstanding bishop," she said.

      "I'm very fond of her. She's been a fabulous person to work with and I feel genuinely excited for her as a person. I'm obviously thrilled as a woman, but I just feel so excited that it's this particular woman because she's outstanding and I have no doubt that she will do what will be quite a difficult job very well."

      The position of suffragan bishop, subordinate to a diocesan bishop, does not allow entry into the House of Lords. The first female bishop permitted to enter the House of Lords is expected to be announced in 2015.

      "The most important thing is that it's the right person for the right job and Libby is the right person for the job. I have no doubt that we'll see more female bishops in the years to come."

      By Adam Stevenson