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/ 20 December 2023

New Bishop for North London and for Racial Justice

The Revd Canon Dr Anderson Jeremiah, Associate Dean (Equality, Diversity, Inclusion and People) in the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, Lancaster University, and Associate Priest at St Paul’s Scotforth, in the Diocese of Blackburn, has been announced as the Diocese of London’s next Bishop of Edmonton, covering the London Boroughs of Camden, Barnet, Enfield and Haringey.

The official announcement came from Downing Street while the Bishop-designate visited Wren Academy Finchley, a leading school co-sponsored by the London Diocesan Board of Schools (LDBS). As part of today’s introduction to the Edmonton Area, the Bishop-designate will visit a number of churches spanning the breadth of the Anglican tradition, including St Barnabas Finchley, St Francis at the Engine Room, St Aldhelm and Old St Pancras Church, one of the oldest sites of Christian worship in the Capital.

Anderson grew up in Tamil Nadu, the southernmost state in India, as a Dalit Christian. He is the first Dalit, and the first clergyperson ordained in the Church of Southern India (CSI), to be appointed Bishop in the Church of England. He has lived across five Anglican provinces and served across rural to urban contexts and amongst deprived and affluent communities.

He has drawn on his experience of exclusion and discrimination in international academic research, for which he has been widely published, and in the advisory positions he has held in the Church of England. This included being asked by the Archbishops of York and Canterbury to play a role in the Anti-Racism Taskforce, which preceded the Racial Justice Unit, as well as being the first Bishop’s Adviser for Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic Affairs in the Diocese of Blackburn, which now has a number of priests from the South Asian community, including representation on the Bishop’s Council. He will take responsibility for the racial justice portfolio in the London College of Bishops.

Anderson will formally take up his post in spring 2024 and will join the College of Bishops in the Diocese of London. He succeeds the Rt Revd Rob Wickham as Bishop of Edmonton, who stepped down in August to become Chief Executive of the Church Urban Fund.

The Revd Canon Dr Anderson Jeremiah, the next Bishop of Edmonton, said:

“I am humbled to be called to be the next Bishop of Edmonton. I look forward to ministering alongside the people of God in the Edmonton area to share the inclusive mission of God’s love and justice.
“I am particularly excited to take responsibility for racial justice as a portfolio amongst the bishops in London. My personal experiences of exclusion and discrimination have formed my life, research, and ministry, and inspires me to embody the expansive hospitality of God. The Edmonton Area is blessed by being a thriving diverse mixture of communities, whom I look forward to serving and shepherding. As an international family, we look forward to finding a home in the London diocesan family.”

The Rt Revd and Rt Hon Dame Sarah Mullally DBE, Bishop of London, said:

“Today’s announcement is a blessing for the Church in North London, which I am sure will thrive under Anderson’s leadership and ministry. He brings a combination of experience – pastoral, academic, theological and strategic – which is a great gift to the Diocese of London as a whole. The perspectives he has gained through living and working in a breadth of cultures and roles will enrich the senior staff team and the life of the church in this city. My congratulations go to him and to his family, with whom it was a pleasure to celebrate today.”

“London’s Diocesan 2030 Vision sets out our ambition for racial justice: how we plan to move forward to truly representing the body of Christ in all its richness – and grow healthily. To reach every Londoner we need to be active in combatting racism and racial injustice. The contributions made by the Racial Justice Priority Group have been invaluable, and I’m in no doubt that Anderson will help lead this transformative work as we continue to tackle the evil of racism here in London.”

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