New Bishop of Stepney tours East London following announcement
Following her announcement as the next Bishop of Stepney, The Venerable Dr Joanne Woolway Grenfell has visited locations across the Stepney area, which covers the boroughs of Hackney, Islington and Tower Hamlets.
The announcement was made on the steps of St John at Hackney, the iconic Parish Church of Hackney, which is undergoing a £5m restoration, supported by the National Lottery Heritage Fund. Joined by the Bishop of London, Joanne was given a ‘hard hat’ tour of the site and the adjacent Hackney Church Brew Co, by the Revd Al Gordon, Rector of Hackney Church.
Joanne then travelled to Islington to visit St Mary Magdalene Academy, which is sponsored by the London Diocesan Board for Schools. Given a tour by the school’s Headteacher, Victoria Linsley, Joanne was invited into a Mandarin lesson and presented with a gift to welcome her to the new role.
Victoria Linsley, Headteacher of St Mary Magdalene Academy, said:
“It was a pleasure to welcome Joanne to St Mary Magdalene, and I congratulate her on her appointment as the next Bishop of Stepney. Sponsored as we are by the London Diocesan Board for Schools, it’s important that we have relationships like this with clergy across the Diocese, and I have no doubt that we will be welcoming Joanne back to St Mary Magdalene soon.”
The tour of the See of Stepney concluded with an introduction to the Tower Hamlets Interfaith Forum (THIFF), convened by the Revd Preb Alan Green, the Chair of THIFF and Rector of St John on Bethnal Green.
In the Tower Hamlets Town Hall’s Speaker’s Parlour, Bishop-designate Joanne met with representatives of the local Muslim, Jewish and Hindu communities, as well as John Biggs, Mayor of Tower Hamlets; Sue Williams, Police Borough Commander, Tower Hamlets and Hackney; and Jim Fitzpatrick, the Member of Parliament for Poplar and Limehouse.
The Revd Preb Alan Green, the Chair of Tower Hamlets Interfaith Forum and Rector of St John on Bethnal Green, said:
“This was a wonderful opportunity to introduce Joanne to civic and faith leaders in this most ethnically and religiously diverse Borough, where the Church of England plays an important role in building and maintaining good relationships across all the communities.”
Read more about the announcement of the new bishop of Stepney.