Posted Tuesday 01 February 2011
The Very Rev Kevin Pearson will be consecrated and installed as Bishop of Argyll and The Isles in a special service on Friday 4 February at 12 noon in St John’s Cathedral, Oban.
The service of consecration and installation will be led by the Most Rev David Chillingworth, Primus of the Scottish Episcopal Church who says: “Kevin Pearson has been greatly loved as Rector of St Michael and All Saints in Edinburgh since 1995 and has been a distinguished Dean of the Diocese of Edinburgh. As Provincial Director of Ordinands he has been a major influence on the shape of the ministry of our whole church.
“The College of Bishops views this appointment as one which is of great significance for the Scottish Episcopal Church. The Rural Commission which reported to last year’s General Synod reminded us that the population of rural Scotland is increasing. The Diocese of Argyll and The Isles is therefore a place of mission opportunity. It deserves leadership of the highest quality.
“I believe that Kevin Pearson will bring to the Diocese of Argyll & The Isles the passion for ministry and the depth of experience for which he is so widely respected throughout our Church.”
The Primus will be joined by other members of the College of Bishops of the Scottish Episcopal Church who, together with the Rt Rev Antje Jackelen from Sweden, the Rt Rev Juha Pihkala from Finland and the Rt Rev Michael Burrows from Ireland, will participate in the act of consecration (this involves the laying on of hands with prayer). Clergy and lay leaders from across the wider church will take part in a robed procession which will lead Bishop-elect Kevin into the Cathedral. Also in this procession will be the Bachuil Mor, the pastoral staff of St Moluag, borne by the Coarb of St Moluag.
The ceremony will be attended by about 400 people including representatives from churches throughout the Diocese of Argyll and The Isles and from across Scotland. Other guests will include the Lord Lieutenant of Argyll & Bute, the Deputy Lord Lieutenant of Inverness, the Baron of Bachuil, and representatives from other church denominations including the Roman Catholic Bishop of Argyll & the Isles and the Moderator of the Presbytery of Argyll. The preacher will be the Dean of Windsor, the Rt Rev David Conner KCVO.
Part of the ceremony will involve entrusting the Diocesan Crozier - the sign of a Bishop’s pastoral office - to the new Bishop. He will also receive the Bishop’s ring and pectoral cross.
The Very Rev Kevin Pearson was elected the new Bishop of Argyll & The Isles in October 2010, following the retirement of the Rt Rev Martin Shaw who had served the diocese as Bishop for five years. He has been the Rector of St Michael & All Saints Church in Edinburgh since 1995 and Dean of the Diocese of Edinburgh since 2004, and also held the post of the Provincial Director of Ordinands (responsible for the discernment and selection process for candidates for ministry), a role which he was instrumental in creating in 1991 on behalf of the College of Bishops.
Bishop-elect Kevin (56) is married to Dr Elspeth Atkinson who is Director of McMillan Cancer Support in Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales; was formerly Head of Economic Development, City of Edinburgh Council, Head of Rural Operations, Scottish Enterprise and did research on the economy of the Highland and Islands. Their interests include travel, walking, reading and dancing.
In preparing for his consecration, bishop-elect Kevin says “I was delighted, excited and humbled to be elected the new Bishop of Argyll & The Isles. I now look forward enormously to working in this beautiful and exciting Diocese. My wife Elspeth and I also look forward to living there and to getting to know the people and the area better.”
Notes to Editors
1. A photocall and interview opportunity will take place immediately after the service (approx between 1.45-2pm)