To retire is a pioneering Church of England woman bishop who campaigned for LGBT rights.
It had been “her pleasure” to serve the church, said the Right Reverend Christine Hardman.
The seventh woman bishop in the Church of England is set to step down.
On November 30, the Right Reverend Christine Hardman, who became the Diocese of Newcastle’s 12th bishop since 1882 in 2015 and campaigned for LGBT rights and child poverty, will step down.
It had been her “pleasure” to serve the church, said the 70-year-old.
She also mentioned how far the church had come in terms of achieving equal rights for men and women in leadership roles, but that there was still much work to be done to make the church more diverse.
“The church does feel like a different place now,” the bishop said. “It’s not about women’s rights; it’s about men and women being equally represented in the church’s leadership.”
“We still have a lot of work to do in the church, such as working with ethnic diversity.”
There’s no time for us to relax and take it easy.”
During severe storms in 2018, the bishop said one of the highlights of her time as bishop was when Newcastle Cathedral opened its doors to the homeless.
“That act of allowing people who were out on the streets in had more impact on talking about Jesus’ love than any sermon,” she said.
Mrs Hardman was ordained as a deacon in 1987 and worked in the diocese of St Albans before being named vicar of Holy Trinity and Christ the King in Stevenage in 1996.
In 1999, she was appointed as the rural dean of Stevenage, and in 2001, she was appointed as the archdeacon of Lewisham and Greenwich in the Diocese of Southwark.
She was awarded the Freedom of the City of Newcastle in September, making her the first religious leader to receive the honor.
To retire, a pioneering Church of England woman bishop who fought for LGBT rights.
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Pioneering Church of England woman bishop who campaigned for LGBT rights to retire