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First group ordinations in the Church of England take place in Diocese of Norwich

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Over three separate services in Norwich Cathedral, the ordinands were ordained two-by-two. It was a very different style of service from the large gatherings of hundreds that have been the norm over the past years.

Rather than the normal pomp and ceremony, these were more intimate services, with just close friends and family. Masks were worn by all those present. The Bishops and Archdeacon all cleansed their hands between each candidate. Music was played on the magnificent organ, but the only singing was by the Precentor – standing high up in the organ loft and a single Cantor. Apart from those in households, everyone had to sit apart. The Deacons had to put on their own stoles.

Yet the atmosphere of these individuals presenting themselves into the service of God and their local communities was, perhaps more moving than ever. A sign of God being wonderfully the same, yesterday, today and forever in whatever circumstances. These, smaller services were a significant symbol of the Church continuing in its ministry in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic, as determined as ever to share the love of Jesus in their parishes and through their lives.

The Rt Revd Graham Usher, Bishop of Norwich said: “Ordination is a time of joy as we recognise the gifts that God gives and receives for the life of the Church of England. These incredible people, who have heard God’s call in their lives, are offering to serve the communities of Norfolk and Waveney in good times and in more challenging times. Their ordinations have already been delayed, so it is a joy that today we can mark their ‘yes’ being added to God’s ‘yes’ and the ‘yes’ of all who have gathered, physically and, far more, online.”

Coryn Stanforth, Catherine Turner, Taylor Wilton-Morgan, Jon Price, Michael Hayden and James Cook were ordained as Deacons today.

There are another seven services around the Diocese this evening and over the next two days as last year’s 15 Deacons are now ordained Priests in parish churches across Norfolk. (detailed below)

We are sharing photos from the different services, so keep an eye on our social media platforms (or click on the Facebook gallery link below) for those and the services are being live-streamed on our YouTube channel where you will also be able to view them later.


Those to be ordained priest in a parish church within their area:

 Thursday 6 August

6 pm

Andrea Woods and Joy Fernando with Bishop Jonathan assisted by Archdeacon Ian at All Saints, Mattishall

Tracy Jessop and Matt Luscombe with Bishop Alan assisted by Archdeacon Steven at St Mary’s, Wroxham

Friday 7th August

11 am

Michaela Sorensen and David Cossey with Bishop Jonathan assisted by Archdeacon Ian at St Mary’s, Watton

Tim Watts and James Pinto with Bishop Graham assisted by Archdeacon Karen at Holy Trinity, Norwich

3 pm

Annie Blyth and Tracy Williams with Bishop Alan assisted by the Revd Canon Sally Theakston at St Matthew’s, Thorpe Hamlet

Saturday 8 August

11 am

Andrew Bevan and Viv Ridpath with Bishop Alan assisted by Archdeacon Steven at St Mary’s, Stalham

Danny Doran-Smith and Andy Bunter with Bishop Jonathan assisted by the Revd Canon David Foster at St. Cuthbert’s, Sprowston

Saturday 2 September

7 pm

P.J. Brombley with Bishop Graham assisted by the Revd Canon David Foster at St. Thomas, Norwich