Thinking Anglicans

Bishop of Aberdeen and Orkney: Anne Dyer

press release from Scottish Episcopal Church

First female Bishop in the Scottish Episcopal Church is elected the new Bishop of Aberdeen & Orkney

The Episcopal Synod of the Scottish Episcopal Church today elected the Rev Canon Anne Dyer as the new Bishop of Aberdeen & Orkney.

Canon Dyer is Rector of Holy Trinity church, Haddington (since 2011). Her wider church involvement includes being a member of the Scottish Episcopal Institute Council and a member of General Synod.

Being in the first group of women for each of these Orders, Canon Dyer was ordained Deacon in 1987 and Priest in 1994 in Rochester. She served as Warden of Cranmer Hall, Durham and before that was Ministry Development Officer in the Diocese of Rochester. Prior to ordination Anne Dyer read Chemistry at St Anne’s College, Oxford and was a Business Systems Analyst with Unilever before training for ordained ministry at Wycliffe Hall, Oxford and studying theology at King’s College London.

Canon Dyer is Chair of the East Lothian Foodbank and is also a regular lecturer across Edinburgh and the Lothians on the subject of fine art and theology.

On hearing of her election Canon Dyer said “I am delighted to be elected by the Bishops of the Scottish Episcopal Church to serve as Bishop in the United Diocese of Aberdeen & Orkney. It will be a privilege to lead the people of this diocese as they continue to make known the love of God to those in their communities and beyond. I am looking forward to both the challenge and excitement of serving and worshipping together in diverse locations across the diocese and to joining the College of Bishops.”

Canon Dyer is the first woman to be elected Bishop in the Scottish Episcopal Church. The General Synod of the Scottish Episcopal Church voted to allow the election of female bishops in 2003. The See of Aberdeen & Orkney became vacant last November when the Rt Rev Dr Robert Gillies retired as Bishop of the Diocese.

The Most Rev Mark Strange, Bishop of Moray, Ross & Caithness and Primus of the Scottish Episcopal Church says “I am delighted to welcome the Rev Canon Anne Dyer to the College of Bishops. Anne brings with her a wealth of experience in theological education and mission development, and has so many of the gifts sought by the diocese together with a deeply loving and generous personality.

I am also delighted that those gifts have allowed us to elect a woman to our College of Bishops. Please pray for Anne, her family, for the congregation at Haddington and for the Diocese of Aberdeen & Orkney as they journey on in faith.”

Canon Dyer was born in 1957, is married and has a daughter.

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Kennedy FraserAngus StewartRosalindRDavid WalkerMarian Recent comment authors
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Fr,J
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Fr,J

Great news for the Episcopal Church of Scotland. May God bless you in the many blessings you will receive through this momentous decision.

Fr John Emlyn Harris-White
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Fr John Emlyn Harris-White

We pray for Anne and her family as they move north. A great day for the Province when words and votes became action on the first appointment of a female Bishop in the Scottish Episcopal Church.
We are fortunate to be members of the Scottish Episcopal Church , and continue to pray for Mark our Primus and our church’s continued ministry.

Fr John Emlyn

David Walker
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David Walker

I add my congratulations to Anne on her appointment. It is good that the episcopal bench north of Hadrian’s Wall will have its first female member.

One detail in the announcement confuses me. She speaks of being elected by the bishops, but I thought Scotland was very proud of having a system that involved quite a wide Electoral College for episcopal vacancies. Is election by the bishops a final ratifying stage to that, or have I missed something here?

Janet Fife
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Janet Fife

Congratulations to Anne. She’s come a long way since she threatened to divorce Roger if he gained more than a gamma on his liturgy exam!

Anthony Birch
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Anthony Birch

@ David, The Electoral Synod in Aberdeen failed to elect, I think twice, so the election falls to the bishops. Where does Hadrian’s Wall run through Newcastle? Possibly north of the cathedral, but south of Bishop’s House, so +Christine is certainly bishop of large tracts this side of the wall.

Peter Owen
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What you have missed, David, is this press release from July. Election of new Bishop of Aberdeen and Orkney to pass to Bishops July 13, 2017 The process for electing a new Bishop involves a Preparatory Committee producing a shortlist of a minimum of three candidates for recommendation to the Electoral Synod. The Preparatory Committee has announced today that it has been unable to recommend this minimum number of candidates for the election of a new Bishop of Aberdeen and Orkney. The current electoral process will therefore automatically come to an end in mid-August. The right to elect a new… Read more »

Simon Kershaw
Admin

That’s an interesting press release Peter. I wonder what the authority is for the statement “The right to elect a new Bishop will pass at that point to the Diocesan Bishops, sitting as the Episcopal Synod”. The canons of the SEC are online at http://sec.inigomedialtd.netdna-cdn.com/wp-content/uploads/Code-of-Canons-2017.pdf Canon 4.11 suggests that: “Should the Preparatory Committee again fail to produce the list by the new date, the Convener of the Electoral Synod shall convene a meeting of the Electoral Synod, at which the election shall be declared void. Immediately after such declaration, the Primus shall issue a fresh mandate, in terms of Section… Read more »

Peter Owen
Guest

Simon, there’s another press release, copied below, which I missed. It has more about the timescale, but I’m not sure that it makes it any clearer! Primus thanks Preparatory Committee of Diocese of Aberdeen and Orkney during vacant See July 14, 2017 The Most Rev Mark Strange, Bishop of Moray, Ross and Caithness and Primus of the Scottish Episcopal Church says: “I would like to thank the Preparatory Committee of the Diocese of Aberdeen and Orkney for all the hard work they undertook as they prayerfully moved through the intricacies of Canon 4 (Of the Election of Bishops to vacant… Read more »

David Emmott
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David Emmott

Is she excused from supporting a football team because she is a woman or because it is Scotland?

Mary Hancock
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Mary Hancock

FWIW, Hadrian’s Way, which tends to follow the course of the wall, passes to the south of Newcastle Cathedral.

Laurie Roberts
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Laurie Roberts

Whatever the detail of the canons and processes, we have this new bishop to welcome and sustain with generosity of spirit.

Jo
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Jo

Both, David. :p Besides, you can’t pick a team in Scotland without declaring yourself to either be Catholic or Protestant, so good Episcopalians ought to pick either two or none.

Marian
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Marian

It is interesting – and probably telling – that both in Scotland and, a couple of years ago in the Church of Ireland, the first female bishop was chosen by an episcopal caucus rather than the normal wider electoral process (which had failed to elect in both instances). For all the vaunted liberalism, when the cookie crumbles and push comes to shove, most church electorates of lay people and clergy seem to be rather conservative and traditional.

David Walker
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David Walker

Thanks for the clarifications about the process. I guess this means Scotland is not the first Anglican province where the first woman to be appointed as bishop has come about through the electoral system failing to appoint. The C of E system has its detractors, but it has allowed us to get the number of women bishops into double figures in quick order.

Now we need to work harder on our BAME numbers!

Kennedy Fraser
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Kennedy Fraser

..most church electorates of lay people and clergy seem to be rather conservative and traditional.

But the electoral synod did not get the opportunity to vote as the process (twice) did not produce the required shortlist of three and so the election passed to the college of bishops sitting as the episcopal synod.

My (limited) experience of the Canon 4 process is that the clergy and the laity when voting for a bishop are more interested in the skills, experience and vision of the person than their gender.

RosalindR
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RosalindR

David Walker, perhaps the C of E is not that different from other provinces in Britain: only two women have been appointed Diocesans so far, through the “normal” processes for that. Still lots of work to do here, including increasing BAME numbers.

Angus Stewart
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Angus Stewart

A view from Scotland: The so called Scottish Episcopal Church does it again, electing another English Clergy to the Episcopate. Our church is nothing more than the Church of England at prayer in the heather. Could they not find a priest who was Scottish to be appointed as Bishop. I can think of two priests in this diocese, one man and one woman, who are highly qualified to be a Bishop. Those purple clad collegiates responsible for this appointment should be ashamed of themselves. This is not an anti women tirade, or opposition to the churches position on same sex… Read more »

Kennedy Fraser
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Kennedy Fraser

A view from Scotland:

Well, this is certainly *a* view.