New Bishops elected
The Rev Canon Ian Paton has today been elected as the new Bishop of St Andrews, Dunkeld & Dunblane, and The Very Rev Andrew Swift has been elected as the new Bishop of Brechin.
The election of the new bishop was carried out by an Electoral Synod in each Diocese (comprising representatives of clergy and lay members from the Diocese). The Primus of the Scottish Episcopal Church, the Most Rev Mark Strange, says “I am delighted that the Electoral Synods have elected Ian Paton and Andrew Swift as their new Bishop in each of their Dioceses and I thank the members of the Electoral Synod for the work that they have done in this process.
“I look forward to welcoming both Ian and Andrew to the College of Bishops and to working with them, and I am sure that the Diocese of St Andrews, Dunkeld & Dunblane and the Diocese of Brechin will look forward to their respective leadership and inspiration in the future development of Mission and Ministry across each of the Dioceses. I ask that we hold them both in prayer as they each move to a new stage of their ministry and prepare for their consecration.”
The Rev Canon Ian Paton (Bishop Elect for the Diocese of St Andrews, Dunkeld & Dunblane) has been Rector of Old St Paul’s Church, Edinburgh since 1997, and is also honorary Anglican Chaplain to Edinburgh University, Canon of St Mary’s Cathedral, Edinburgh and Associate Tutor at the Scottish Episcopal Institute. He was previously a rector in East Lothian, Vice-Provost of St Mary’s Cathedral, a university chaplain in Oxford, a bishop’s chaplain, and a curate in Reading. He is a former convener of the Scottish Episcopal Church’s (SEC) provincial Liturgy Committee, involved in writing new services for the SEC, and continues to teach worship to students training for ministry. He is a supporter of the ordination of women, the rights of LGBTQI people, and the inclusion of people of all ages in the Church.
Canon Ian Paton is married and he and his wife have four grown-up children. They enjoy art and poetry, hospitality around the dinner table and have a love of the sea.
On hearing the news of his election Canon Ian Paton said “I am very happy and deeply honoured to have been elected by the people of St Andrews, Dunkeld & Dunblane to serve them as their Bishop. I ask for your prayers for the whole Diocese, and for me, as we set out together on this new journey for all of us.”
The Very Rev Andrew Swift DL (Bishop Elect for the Diocese of Brechin) has been Dean of Argyll and The Isles since 2012, Rector of Dunoon and Rothesay in that diocese since 2010 and a member of the Scottish Episcopal Church General Synod from 2011.
He has been a Depute Lieutenant of Argyll and Bute since 2016. He previously served in the Diocese of Gloucester, following a career as a shipbuilding executive, Civil Service research engineer and a junior officer in the RAF. He was born 1968 in Aberdeen and grew up in Dunblane. He studied at the Universities of Edinburgh, Aberdeen and Oxford.
The Very Rev Andrew Swift is married to Mary, a native of Stranraer, and they have three children – Frances (16), Peter (19) and Eleanor (21). For leisure, the family enjoy narrow-boating on the Scottish canals with their Collie, Molly.
On hearing the news of his election the Very Rev Andrew Swift said “It is a wonderful and humbling honour to be elected as the next Bishop of Brechin. I would like to thank the electoral synod for their trust in me, and look forward very much to working with all the Scottish Episcopal Churches of Brechin to help them build up their confidence, witness and mission in Dundee, Angus, the Mearns and Carse of Gowrie. I am also praying for my fellow candidates in the election – thanks and blessings for them all.”
The services of consecration will take place – dates yet to be confirmed – in St Paul’s Cathedral, Dundee (for the Bishop of Brechin) and St Ninian’s Cathedral, Perth (for the Bishop of St Andrews, Dunkeld & Dunblane).