Last Saturday hundreds of well-wishers watched as Joe Hawes was installed as the Dean of St Edmundsbury in a service led by Bishop Martin.
Dean Hawes said: “I have approached becoming Dean with both trepidation and excitement. With trepidation because the challenge of being a Cathedral Dean today requires a whole series of skills and aptitudes, many of which I am going to have to work hard to acquire. With excitement because how could anyone not be excited at the prospect of coming to work in such beautiful surroundings, in such a friendly and supportive community? Cathedrals are in an interesting place at the moment, never more visited and with attendances growing, but also never more scrutinised by the media and national Church institutions. The struggle to maintain and develop historic buildings while growing mission and ministry means that Cathedral Chapters are under pressure as never before. Of course, I’ll stumble, and hope you’ll forgive me when I do, and help me up again, but in the midst of the challenges, I hope there can also be sparkiness, holiness and fun. I hope that I can be part of a move to draw the cathedral even closer to the parishes it serves, finding new and deeper ways of being a resource, a place of pilgrimage, a place of hospitality and worship.”
Liz Steele, a cathedral warden and member of the chapter, added: “Joe is the right person to steer us a steady course for all those parts of the Cathedral that make it what it is, a beacon of faith, hope and love.”
Original article published by the Diocese of St Edmundsbury