The next Bishop of Derby will be the Right Reverend Libby Lane, Downing Street has announced.
Bishop Libby is currently the Suffragan Bishop of Stockport, in the Diocese of Chester – a post she has occupied since 2015.
Libby describes Derbyshire as ‘the place that holds my heart’. She grew up in Glossop in the north-west of the county and was selected for ordination while working in the parish of St Thomas Brampton, Chesterfield.
Bishop Libby said: “I am excited and privileged to have been called to serve as Bishop of Derby.
“I grew up here and my vocation was fostered here. Derbyshire nurtured me and brought me to faith and I want to love Derbyshire back.
“I want to lead a church in Derbyshire where people find hope because they know they are loved by God in Christ, and I pray that hope sets us free to live our lives in ways that bring change for good.”
On hearing the news, the Dean of Derby, the Very Reverend Dr Stephen Hance, said: “I am thrilled that Libby is coming to be our bishop. Her roots are here in Derbyshire, and we are all very much looking forward to welcoming her home and working with her in the months and years ahead.
“This announcement presents us with an opportunity to think afresh, about who we are and who we hope to be, about the opportunities and challenges that face us as we move forward.”
Bishop Libby is marking today’s announcement by visiting a number of communities in the Diocese. She started the day, with her husband, George, her two grown-up children, Connie and Benedict, in her childhood hometown of Glossop, where her parents still live.
From there, she travelled to Bolsover, a former mining town, in the north-east of Derbyshire, meeting children and staff at Bolsover C of E Junior School and taking part in their assembly. She invited the children to help her with a short talk about the Nativity.
Libby is also revisiting the church of St Thomas in Brampton, Chesterfield, where she will meet women in their Knit and Natter meeting and a men’s social group, known as Thom’s Blokes, who will be enjoying a special Christmas lunch.
Later, she will meet members of the farming and agricultural communities in Alderwasley, before a reception at Derby Cathedral, where she will meet local faith and community leaders. Libby will end her day joining Evening Prayers at the Cathedral from 17:15.
The service to install Bishop Libby in Derby Cathedral will take place after Easter.