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Church of England Bishops: Stephen Conway

I thought we might resume the deep peace of our catalogue raisonné of bishops, after last week’s hurly burly of the female episcopate and synodical discussions thereof.


And there’s no one quite as reasonable as The Right Reverend Stephen David Conway (born 22 December 1957) currently  Bishop of Ely, and previously the Bishop of Ramsbury. Laconically described by Crockford’s:

+CONWAY, The Rt Revd Stephen David. b 57. Keble Coll Ox BA80 MA84 CertEd81 Selw Coll Cam BA85. Westcott Ho Cam 83. d 86 p 87 c 06. C Heworth St Mary Dur 86-89; C Bishopwearmouth St Mich w St Hilda 89-90; Dir of Ords and Hon C Dur St Marg 90-94; P-in-c Cockerton 94-96; V 96-98; Bp’s Sen Chapl and Communications Officer 98-02; Adn Dur and Can Res Dur Cathl 02-06; Area Bp Ramsbury Sarum 06-10; Bp Ely from 10.

What follows is taken from Wikipedia:

Conway was educated at Archbishop Tenison’s Grammar School, Keble College, Oxford and Selwyn College, Cambridge. After a period of study at Westcott House, he was ordained in 1987. His ecclesiastical career began with a curacy at Heworth, Tyne and Wear after which he was Director of Ordinands for the Diocese of Durham and then Priest in Charge (and subsequently Vicar) of Cockerton. From here he became Senior Chaplain to the Bishop of DurhamMichael Turnbull, and subsequently Archdeacon of Durham.

On 2 May 2006, his nomination as Bishop of Ramsbury was announced and he was consecrated on 22 June 2006.  On 31 August 2010, it was announced that he would be the next Bishop of Ely. He was elected by the College of Canons at Ely on 18 October 2010, and the election was confirmed by the provincial court on 6 December 2010, at which point he legally became the Bishop of Ely. His installation and enthronement was held in Ely Cathedral on 5 March 2011.

However, all the indications are that Bishop Stephen enjoys a joke and I think he would be the first to appreciate the reading of this article, which places all the emphases on the wrong syllables and brought tears of mirth to my eyes, and I hope yours. In the manner of Bal-ham, gateway to the south,  the diocese is here pronounced Eli…


But let’s be serious for a moment. Bishop Stephen has obviously thought deeply about ordination in particular and helping people, both lay and ordained, to deepen their personal spirituality in general. Edward Green reproduces a 5-minute talk by him here.


Bishop Stephen acted as editor of an Affirming Catholicism conference, which led to the publication of Living the Eucharist in June 2001.


The diocesan website says:

His understanding of church doctrine and liturgical practice were formed principally within the Anglican catholic tradition, but this has been enriched by the positive experience of other traditions throughout his ministry, such as the charismatic movement. As a child, he attended a Methodist Sunday School. He is firmly committed to being a bishop for the whole Church, regardless of tradition…He has chaired a mission fund which gives grants to support Fresh Expressions, new forms of Church for today’s fast changing world…You can read Bishop Stephen’s full biography here.

Bishop Stephen voted in favour of women bishops at General Synod this month.


Leap in the dark assessment

I think I’ve found the bishop of my dreams. Now to move to Ely…





9 comments on this post:

Chris Fewings said...

Living the Eucharist. What a good idea.

30 November 2012 19:57
UKViewer said...

On the evidence here, he obviously has the gifts of being an excellent pastor, teacher and probably leader of people.

It you are moving to Ely, please let me know so that I can give you a hand to pack and move.

You’d obviously be happier there than in W********r diocese 🙂

Lay Anglicana said...

My big problem is whether he is likely to stay in ‘Eli, Cam-bri-gee-shire’ for long enough to make the move worth it. As he’s not married, perhaps I should offer myself as a sort of Father Ted housekeeper (name escapes me), only a cut above of course. Not sure where that leaves Robert (husband).

30 November 2012 20:58
30 November 2012 20:17
Kate ardern said...

He sounds first rate and I would observe that Ely were unanimous in their support for women bishops in the recent vote. Clearly the strong and positive leadership example of +Stephen was at work. I can’t quite picture you as Mrs Doyle, Laura, but I’m sure you make a very nice “cuppa Tay”!! Ah go on now!

Lay Anglicana said...

Mrs Doyle, that’s it! Well, I would be a very superior sort of Mrs Doyle, as befits the handmaiden of a bishop. More Hinge and Bracket, perhaps. Sort of live-in ‘More tea, Vicar?’ type 🙂

01 December 2012 09:46
30 November 2012 22:14
Sue Milton said...

We welcomed Bishop Stephen to stay at our our house for the night on his tour of visiting all the churches and clergy of Diocese of ELI. He is a very lovable person, my children loved him,we all love him and I see you clearly love him too Laura, yes move nearer to us.

Lay Anglicana said...

It’s very tempting…

01 December 2012 09:47
30 November 2012 22:30
Zarine said...

Found this as I have a meeting with Stephen Conway tomorrow – it was hilarious! Yes, move to Ely, it’s lovely living here!

Lay Anglicana said...

Rather cheeky of me – do tell me where we have got him right and where wrong after your meeting 🙂

22 December 2015 22:44
22 December 2015 18:44

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