Thinking Anglicans

Bishop of Sodor and Man: Peter Eagles

Updated Thursday afternoon

Press release from Number 10

Bishop of Sodor and Man: Peter Eagles

From: Prime Minister’s Office, 10 Downing Street
Published: 4 May 2017

The Queen has approved the nomination of the Venerable Peter Eagles for election as Bishop of Sodor and Man.

The Queen has approved the nomination of the Venerable Peter Andrew Eagles QHC, BA, MTh, AKC, Deputy Chaplain-General HM Land Forces; Archdeacon for the Army, and Honorary Canon of Salisbury Cathedral, for election as Bishop of Sodor and Man in succession to the Right Reverend Robert Mar Erskine Paterson, MA, on his resignation on 11 November 2016.


The Venerable Peter Eagles, aged 57, studied at the School of Slavonic; East European Studies and at King’s College, London, and at the Universities of Heidelberg and Oxford. He trained for the ordained ministry at St Stephen’s House, Oxford.

He served his title at St Martin’s, Ruislip in the Diocese of London from 1989 to 1992. Since1992 he has served as a Chaplain in the British Army, ministering to soldiers and families and the wider community in many locations in the United Kingdom and overseas, including military operations in Iraq and Afghanistan. He has been Archdeacon for the Army since 2011, Honorary Chaplain to the Queen since 2013, and Honorary Canon of Salisbury Cathedral since 2015. He is a graduate of the Royal College of Defence Studies.

Peter is married to Gail, whom he met in the parish in Ruislip and with whom he has since lived in 14 different places in 25 years, and they have a son who graduated in 2016 from Balliol College and now works for a publishing firm in Oxford.

His interests include European languages and literature (in which he maintains active academic study and research), cross-cultural learning and discussion, restoring a small ancient house, and playing baroque arias on the oboe.

The diocesan website has Bishop of Sodor and Man Announced.


The diocesan website article includes A Personal Statement on Vocation, Episcopacy, and Mutual Flourishing by the bishop designate. It includes these two paragraphs:

My understanding and interpretation of matters of faith and order must now be set within the context of God’s call to lead this Diocese in mission at this time. I understand and believe that God has called me specifically to be the Bishop of Sodor & Man. Among other things, this clearly requires me to ensure the concept of Mutual Flourishing as outlined in the House of Bishops’ Declaration on the Ministry of Bishops and Priests (GS Misc 1076) of 2014 and the accompanying Five Guiding Principles, and to do so in a diocese in which there is no other resident bishop.

Therefore, as the sole bishop in this diocese (and consistent with Paragraph 11 of the Declaration), and trusting in the grace of God to sustain the increasing number of vocations, I will ordain all who are called to be deacons and priests. The Church of England is committed to all orders of ministry being open equally to all while ensuring that those who cannot receive the ministry of women priests or bishops are able to flourish, and petitioning parishes within the Diocese of Sodor & Man will of course be able to request the ministry of the Bishop of Beverley or the Bishop of Maidstone. I am entirely supportive of this Declaration, which enables women to exercise a full ministry as priests and bishops. The Declaration also allows for a traditionalist who does not ordain women to the priesthood to be a diocesan bishop in any diocese where there is a suffragan to ordain women as priests, and where the will of the diocese for such an appointment is reflected through the Crown Nominations Commission and the consultation process. We are therefore able to look forward to the continuing flourishing of understandings of faith and order which differ but which respect each other. Most of all, I look forward to leading the Church’s mission on the Isle of Man, and to building on the work of my predecessor Bishop Robert, of our Archdeacon and Dean, and of all who worship and minister on the Island.

Readers may want to particularly note the sentence: “I will ordain all who are called to be deacons and priests.”

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Michael Mason
Michael Mason
7 years ago

Given the commitment to be willing to “ordain all who are called to be deacons and priests”, would the new bishop be supportive of married LGBT priests such as Fr Andrew Foreshew-Cain, and be willing to employ them within his diocese?

Father Ron Smith
7 years ago

Yes, Michael. I would like to be able to give the new Bishop of Sodor and Man the benefit of the doubt – re his willingness to ordain “ALL who are called” by God. Some have been overlooked in the C.of E. because of their intrinsic sexuality.

Nigel LLoyd
Nigel LLoyd
7 years ago

I know some Cathedrals have Honorary Canons, but in Salisbury we are properly inducted into named Prebendary stalls as Non-residentiary Canons (not honorary ones). I don’t know if there is some master plan to clear out our stalls, but they seem to be emptying alarmingly fast. In recent times we have lost a Canon Treasurer and an Archdeacon, who have moved on to be bishops. In the meeting of the College of Canons next week we will be saying farewell to two of our number, both of whom are moving on to be Diocesan Bishops.

7 years ago

Having never heard of Peter Eagles before this appointment, it is apparent from his statement that he has not been someone who would support women as priests. So when I read this post I was pleased: maybe, I thought, something has been learned from Sheffield. And were I a priest in the Isle of Man I would not be looking to leave (as would have been the case had I been in Sheffield and Philip North appointed) BUT I would want to know – what does this mean? So, he will ordain my sisters – but will he attend a… Read more »

T Pott
T Pott
7 years ago

Given that the Isle of Man is not part of the UK, why did this announcement come from Downing Street? Why not from the chief minister of the IoM, or the Lieutenant Governor, or Buckingham Palace or York?

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