New bishop urges sexuality-row Llandaff diocese to move on

Dean June OsborneImage copyright Dean Berry
Image caption June Osbourne was the first woman to become a dean at a medieval cathedral in 2004

The new Bishop of Llandaff wants the diocese to “go forward” following a selection process where the Church in Wales was accused of being homophobic.

It denies a claim from Dr Jeffrey John who said he was rejected as Dr Barry Morgan’s successor because he was gay.

It is understood Dr John received the most electoral college votes but not the two-thirds needed by Church rules.

The Bench of Bishops appointed the Very Reverend June Osborne after the initial process failed to select a candidate.

Bishop-designate Osborne will be consecrated as 72nd Bishop of Llandaff at Brecon Cathedral on Saturday after leaving her post of 13 years as Dean of Salisbury, where she became the first woman to become dean at a medieval cathedral.

“I have had huge affection and warmth and welcome and I’m sure we will go forward really confidently under my leadership,” she told BBC Radio Wales..

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Media captionNew Bishop of Llandaff: Church ‘more normal’ with women bishops

“I wasn’t part of the early process and simply I don’t know what went on.

“The process is very clear and was followed meticulously. I’m confident – and it has been scrutinised – that the process was followed carefully and constitutionally.

“I realise Jeffrey John won’t be the only one disappointed to not be the Bishop of Llandaff and I hold Jeffrey in very high esteem, he is a good friend.

“For myself, I can only say discernment has happened. The sense that this is God’s call to me is very vivid to me.

“I am the Bishop of Llandaff and the diocese will want to gather around that fact.”

Bishop-designate Osborne is the Church in Wales’ second female bishop appointment after Canon Joanna Penberthy was consecrated as Bishop of St Davids in January.

“This service will be a wonderful celebration of faith and hope for the future as we consecrate June as bishop and welcome her into the family of the Church in Wales,” said the Bishop of Swansea and Brecon John Davies, who will conduct the ceremony as the church’s senior bishop.

The diocese of Llandaff serves most of Cardiff, the south Wales valleys and the Vale of Glamorgan.

“Being ordained a bishop into the Church in Wales is such an immense privilege and to be the Bishop of Llandaff even more so,” she added.

She will be enthroned at Llandaff Cathedral on 22 July.

BBC News – Wales

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