Reverend Pat Storey first woman Anglican bishop in Ireland

Rev Pat Storey Pat Storey will be the first Anglican bishop in the UK and Ireland

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The Anglican church has appointed the UK and Ireland's first woman bishop.

The Reverend Pat Storey, a rector in Londonderry, was elected by the Church of Ireland as Bishop of Meath and Kildare, in the Republic of Ireland.

The married mother of two, who grew up in Belfast, said she was "excited and daunted" by the historic appointment.

"I have had an extraordinarily happy experience in St Augustine's and in this wonderful city, which I will be sad to leave," she said.

"However, I count it an enormous privilege to begin a new phase of my ministry with the people of Meath and Kildare, and I look forward to working with the team of clergy who are already there.

"I would sincerely ask for your prayers for myself and my family, who are the best family in the world."

Michael Jackson, Archbishop of Dublin, said the appointment brought delight to many across the Church of Ireland and throughout the Anglican Communion.

"Pat herself brings to this work of God a warm personality and a breadth of spiritual gifts to share generously in the church and in the community," he said.

Welcome

Mrs Storey, who is 53, has been rector of St Augustine's in Derry since 2004.

She is married to Reverend Earl Storey and they have two adult children.

She studied French and English at Trinity College in Dublin, trained at the Church of Ireland Theological College and was ordained deacon in 1997 and priest in 1998.

She worked as a youth worker with the Church of Ireland youth department.

The appointment of Mrs Storey was welcomed by Watch, a group that campaigns for the appointment of women bishops.

"We're delighted and thrilled and we warmly congratulate her," the Reverend Lindsay Southern, a spokeswoman for the group said.

The Anglican churches in Wales and Scotland have the power to appoint woman bishops but have not yet done so. The church in England is expected to discuss permitting the appointment of women bishops next year or in 2015.

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