first ever female archdeacon was installed during a ceremony in front of hundreds at the city's Anglican cathedral on Sunday (March 15).
The Ven Jan McFarlane
made history for the Diocese of Norwich
when she became one of just 12 female archdeacons nationally out of 112 in the Church of England
And she told the EDP that she felt privileged to be chosen for the role but also acknowledged the pressure that came with breaking new ground.
The archdeacon shares with the bishop the pastoral care of the clergy and undertakes much of the practical, legal and administrative work in a diocese, including looking after buildings.
She said: “What is fantastic is I know the people so well because I have been in the diocese for 10 years and because I know the people it just feels a real privilege to be taking on the role.
“It is a role of offering support to the parish clergy and doing work on the ground and I know they are all great people and fantastic churches and congregations.
“And of course I am the first female archdeacon for the diocese so I do feel a little bit more pressure. It feels like it did 15 years ago when women first became ordained, when you felt you had to do things better.
Ms McFarlane succeeded the Ven Clifford Offer
as archdeacon after spending the past nine years as both communications officer for the diocese, a role she will continue, and chaplain to the Bishop of Norwich.
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