Diocese of ChichesterDiocese of Chichester

New Bishop of Lewes Appointed

New Bishop of Lewes Appointed

The Reverend Richard Jackson, Mission & Renewal Adviser and Leader of the Church Growth Team in the Diocese of Chichester is to be the next Bishop of Lewes.

Richard, 53, is married to Deborah, who is a special needs teacher. They have three grown up children.

The Bishop of Chichester, Dr Martin Warner, said today: "I am absolutely delighted that Richard has agreed to take on this task and to share in the ministry of this Diocese as a bishop. I urge everyone to pray for him and his family and I look forward to working collaboratively with him."

As bishop, Mr Jackson will serve with Dr Warner (the diocesan bishop) and Bishop Mark Sowerby who is the suffragan Bishop of Horsham.

Richard has a scientific background and has specialised in working in agriculture. Before becoming a priest he worked as an agricultural consultant advising farmers across a range of issues.

Originally from Wiltshire Richard studied at Oxford and trained for the ministry at Trinity College, Bristol.

But when he was ready to be ordained it was to Sussex where Richard served his curacy in the Parish of Lindfield

He became Vicar of Rudgwick in 1998 and then was Rural Dean of Horsham from 2005 before taking up his current post.

"I am relieved that I am able to at least talk about something I have known for quite some time. One of my key tasks is to be a mediator and to bring people to mutual understanding. I really want to be a bishop to all people, it is as simple as that."

He adds: “Ultimately, the task of the church is about growth. If we want to contribute to the common good in society we need to growth and be growing."

Richard admits that "something of a midlife crisis" encouraged him to buy a Harley Davidson motorcycle and he acknowledges that he might become known as the "biking bishop". But he certainly intends to get around his patch on his motorbike and believes that knowing the Diocese as well as he does is going to help him in his new task.

Richard must first be ordained as bishop which takes place in Westminster Abbey in May. He will then be formally welcomed to the Diocese in Chichester Cathedral.

Richard Jackson succeeds Wallace Benn who retired in 2012

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