The Right Reverend Kevin Pearson Becomes 15th Bishop of Glasgow and Galloway

The Right Reverend Kevin Pearson today [1 July 2020] becomes the 15th Bishop of the Diocese of Glasgow and Galloway, upon his translation from the Diocese of Argyll and The Isles.

The enthronement of Bishop Kevin was originally to have taken place with a service at St Mary’s Cathedral on 4 July, but this had to be postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic and subsequent lockdown.

However, all members of the College of Bishops have signed a Deed installing Bishop Kevin as Bishop of Glasgow and Galloway. A service of welcome will follow, when appropriate. At present, Bishop Kevin will remain physically based in Argyll & The Isles until circumstances allow him to move to Glasgow.

His first service as Bishop of Glasgow and Galloway will be on 5 July, as part of the service broadcast by St Mary’s Cathedral in Glasgow, and he will also lead the provincial Eucharist service on 19 July.

Bishop Kevin, who recently marked the 40th anniversary of his ordination, has said that since being elected Bishop of Glasgow and Galloway, he has been asked frequently what his strategy and Mission Plan will be. He replied:

“I believe in God.

“I believe in the Scottish Episcopal Church.

“I believe in the Diocese of Glasgow and Galloway.

“And that is why I have responded to what I believe to be God’s call discerned with and through the College of Bishops, to come to the Diocese of Glasgow and Galloway.

“Faithfulness is my strategic plan as I move to the Diocese of Glasgow and Galloway. Faithfulness is an old fashioned word but at the electoral synod meeting, attended by the whole College of Bishops, during the group work it was the word faithfulness, that summarised my experience of that group and the whole electoral process in Glasgow and Galloway.”

His full response, and reflections, can be read here.

The election of Bishop Kevin at a meeting of the Episcopal Synod in January, pictured above, represented a historic ‘translation’ of a Bishop from one See to another. The See of Glasgow & Galloway became vacant in 2018 following the retirement of the Rt Rev Dr Gregor Duncan who had served the diocese as Bishop for eight years.

Bishop Kevin has served as Bishop of Argyll & The Isles since February 2011 and before that was Rector of St Michael & All Saints Church in Edinburgh, Canon of St Mary’s Cathedral, Edinburgh, Dean of the Diocese of Edinburgh and the Provincial Director of Ordinands (responsible for the discernment and selection process for candidates for ministry). He is also currently the Convener of the Council of the Scottish Episcopal Institute (responsible for the training of those entering authorised ministry) and serves on the provincial Standing Committee of the Scottish Episcopal Church.

Bishop Kevin is married to Dr Elspeth Atkinson who is Chief Operating Officer for the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of St Andrews & Edinburgh. Prior to that Elspeth was Director of MacMillan Cancer Support in Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales and for most of her career held senior roles in Economic Development in Scotland.

A mandate for the election of a new Bishop for Argyll and The Isles will be issued by the Primus this month.

During the episcopal vacancy, the Right Rev Ian Paton, Bishop of St Andrews, Dunkeld and Dunblane, has been appointed by the College of Bishops to take on the duties of Acting Bishop of Argyll and The Isles.

Day-to-day matters in Argyll and The Isles during the vacancy will be handled by the Dean of the diocese, the Very Reverend Canon Margi Campbell, with the administrative help of Bishop’s Secretary and PA, Audrey Walton.