New Female Archdeacon Arrives

by Michael Ford last modified 06 Oct, 2017 10:24 AM

The Revd Ruth Worsley, until recently Parish Development Officer for the Diocese of Southwark, was collated as the first-ever female Archdeacon of Wilts last night. The Bishop of Salisbury, Nicholas Holtam, led the service at St John’s Devizes.

New Female Archdeacon Arrives

The new Archdeacon with the Bishop of Salisbury

Click here for a gallery

Attendees included the Lord Lieutenant of Wiltshire, Sarah Rose Troughton; the Chair of Wiltshire County Council, Christine Crisp; the Bishop of Ramsbury, Dr Edward Condry; the Bishop of Sherborne, Dr Graham Kings; and the Dean of Salisbury, June Osborne.

Bishop Holtam officially welcomed Ruth in post and said “It is also a happy welcome of Ruth and Howard and their sons Nathanael, Jonathan and Benjamin. We hope and pray you will make a happy home here in Devizes, which Simon Jenkins describes as his ‘first choice as the quintessential country town.’”

He added, to applause, “Salisbury was one of the first two Cathedrals to have a woman Dean. ...at a time when the Church of England has got itself into a spin about women bishops, Ruth is especially welcome as the first woman Archdeacon in this diocese.”

Ruth mentioned the warm welcome she had already received in Devizes, promised not to act like Archdeacon Robert from TV’s ‘Rev’, and referred enthusiastically to “this great new adventure of being Archdeacon of Wilts.”

Speaking of her journey on her way to the role, she added humbly, “I found my way by the expression of faith, sharing of testimony and outpouring of love of others I met on the way.”

The new Archdeacon begins her official duties today.

Ends

Notes
Ruth (50), a chaplain to HM The Queen, will be responsible to the bishop for the life
and work of the parishes in the deaneries which make up her archdeaconry. She will have additional diocesan responsibilities.

Ruth was ordained into the Diocese of Southwell and is a former Area Dean of Nottingham North (2006 to 2008), Nottingham South (2008 to 2010) and Dean of Women's Ministry (2007 to 2010).
She is married to Howard, who is also a priest. They have three sons, Nathanael, Jonathan and Benjamin.

Links
Gallery: higher-resolution photos available on request
Bishop of Salisbury 
Dean of Salisbury
Archdeacons

Further information and photos
Contact Michael Ford, Communications Co-ordinator:
01722 438651, 07500 836989, michael.ford@salisbury.anglican.org

 

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