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Norfolk bishop who "won hearts" is to retire

2009: DavidAtkinsonA Norfolk bishop who "won the hearts of many people" is to retire after eight years' work in the Norwich Diocese.

The Rt Revd David Atkinson (pictured right), who has been the Bishop of Thetford since 2001 will be retiring on 16 September 2009.

Bishop David ‘s work covered the whole of the Diocese of Norwich and was focussed in particular on south and east Norfolk and the Waveney District of Suffolk.

The Rt Revd Graham James, Bishop of Norwich said of his colleague: “David Atkinson has won the hearts of many people in this diocese during his eight years as Bishop of Thetford.  He has been a wonderful colleague, wise in his advice and a true friend and companion in ministry. 

"I will miss him enormously but so too will the clergy and people who have valued his pastoral care, his teaching ministry and his clarity of mind and purpose.  We wish Bishop David and Sue every happiness in their retirement.”

Bishop David himself said: "I am very grateful to have been given the opportunity to serve in the Norwich Diocese for the past 8 years.  It has been a privilege, and Sue and I have very much enjoyed being here. 
"Though we will be moving back to London, where our children and grandchildren live, we will always carry much affection for Norfolk, for the friends we have made and the churches and people we have got to know."

The bishop has served in the diocese as Chair of the Boards of Education and Ministry, the Youth and Children’s Forum, and the Environmental Group. He has also been Chair of the Church of England’s Mission and Theology Advisory Group.

The bishop originally trained as an organic research chemist and among his many books, his most recent has been on climate change.  Before coming to the diocese in 2001 he was a Fellow of Corpus Christi College Oxford where he taught the Psychology of Religion and Christian Ethics and was a visiting lecturer at the theological college Wycliffe Hall. He then became residentiary canon and chancellor of Southwark Cathedral after which he was appointed Archdeacon of Lewisham.

There will be a farewell service for him in Norwich Cathedral at 3.30pm Sunday July 19.



., 28/01/2009

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