The Bishop of Reading, the Rt Revd Andrew Proud, has announced he will retire next year. His last official engagement takes place on Easter Sunday. “Bishop Andrew has brought a passion for the global Church which has been threaded through every aspect of his leadership,” says the Bishop of Oxford.

In a letter to clergy and parishioners across the Berkshire episcopal area, Bishop Andrew writes that he feels a deep sense of gratitude: “It has been such a joy to ordain deacons and priests and see them grow and move on, and to have had the privilege of baptising and confirming so many.”

Prior to becoming Bishop of Reading in 2011, Bishop Andrew served as Chaplain of St Matthew’s, Addis Ababa and was consecrated Bishop of Ethiopia and the Horn of Africa in 2007. Since returning to the UK Bishop Andrew has been instrumental in introducing a major mission initiative, Partnership for Missional Church to the diocese.

“Bishop Andrew has been an enormous gift to the Diocese of Oxford as Bishop of Reading,” says the Bishop of Oxford, the Rt Revd Steven Croft. “He has set humility, prayer, listening to scripture and the mission of God at the heart of his episcopal ministry.

“He has brought to the diocese a passion for the global Church, which has been threaded through every aspect of his leadership, and he has been a pastor and an encourager to many across the Berkshire Area. The insights of Partnership in Missional Church have become increasingly important in the life of the diocese as we discern our call together to be more like Jesus Christ.

“Bishop Andrew and his wife, Janice, are known and held in great affection across Berkshire. Like many others, I will miss Andrew as a friend and colleague when he begins his retirement in May of next year.”

Details of the timetable for consultations and the appointment of Bishop Andrew’s successor as Bishop of Reading will be announced by the Diocese of Oxford later this year.

ENDS

Notes to editors:

  • A farewell service for Bishop Andrew will take place on Wednesday 1 May in Reading Minster.
  • High resolution photos for press use are available on request
  • The Diocese of Oxford is divided into four smaller ‘episcopal Areas’. The Bishop of Reading is one of three Area Bishops who serve under the Bishop of Oxford
  • With a population of 800,000 living in 126 parishes, the Reading Episcopal Area (or Berkshire Archdeaconry) is larger than many dioceses in the Church of England. It extends from West Berkshire along the M4 corridor to Windsor.

For more information, or to arrange an interview with Bishop Andrew, please contact Steven Buckley on 07824 906839 or Jo Duckles on 07880 716761.

BBC interview