The new Bishop of Croydon, the Rt Rev Dr Rosemarie Mallett, has been consecrated in what she described as a “spiritually uplifting and joy-filled” service at Southwark Cathedral. Among those officiating at the service was the Archbishop of Canterbury, the Most Rev Justin Welby.
Bishop Mallett is the Diocese of Southwark’s first woman bishop and third black bishop – the first being her fellow Barbadian, the Rt Rev Wilfred Wood, now retired, while the second, the Rt Rev Dr Woyin Karowei Dorgu, currently serving as Bishop of Woolwich.
The consecration was attended by family, friends and parishioners, not only from the Diocese of Southwark, but from across the country, including clergy, bishops and local and international dignitaries. Well-wishers flooded social media with messages of congratulations, prayers and encouragement.
The Bishop of Southwark, the Rt Rev Christopher Chessun, said, “I am thankful that Bishop Rosemarie Mallett has joined the episcopal team as Bishop of Croydon.
“Bishop Rosemarie brings good local knowledge, having served as Archdeacon of Croydon, as well as a wealth of experience from her years as an academic, parish priest and heading the Diocese’s Justice Peace and the Integrity of Creation department.
“Her love and compassion for the communities she serves shines through and I look forward to working with her in the years to come.”
In a tweet after the service, the Archbishop said, “The grace and goodness of God was so visible at Rosemarie Mallett’s consecration as Bishop of Croydon at Southwark Cathedral today. Praying for Bishop Rosemarie and the wonderful communities she serves.”
Bishop Mallett said, “I feel completely humbled and privileged to be called to serve God as a bishop in his church and to lead his people as we work to build the kingdom in the Croydon Episcopal Area which stretches out into East Surrey. I am looking forward to getting to know more of the churches and church schools and para-church projects in the whole episcopal area, and to offer my support to their mission and ministry.”
In a moving and powerful sermon, the Rev Prebendary Sandra McCalla, Chaplain to the Bishop of London, said, “Today, you answer this onerous, yet joyful call to serve not just you but the whole body of witnesses, including those who have travelled across seas and continents to come and see what the Lord has done.”
The service was recorded and can be watched here:
And you can now listen to our exclusive and extensive interview with the new Bishop for our Under The Flyover podcast, in which she talks about what she and the church are doing to tackle the links between school exclusions and knife crime, her lifelong battles for equality and against racism, and the challenges for the church in Croydon following covid.
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