Church of England’s first black female bishop just got consecrated…and she’s Jamaican!

Reverend Doctor Rose Hudson-Wilkin, soon-to-be Bishop of Dover (Photo: Church of England)

After a blessed ceremony on Tuesday (Nov. 19), Reverend Doctor Rose Hudson-Wilkin is officially the Church of England’s first black woman to become a bishop.

Reverend Rose Hudson-Wilkin, who joined the ministry when she was 14, was consecrated as the Bishop of Dover in London.

Dr. Hudson-Wilkin, the former chaplain to the speaker of the house, succeeds Right Reverend Trevor Willmott, who retired in May.

Dr. Hudson-Wilkin will be installed at the Canterbury Cathedral on Saturday, November 30.

Bishop Rose, Archbishop Justin and Bishop Olivia (Photo: Graham Lacdao, St Paul’s Cathedral)

“I’m excited, I’ve got lots of new people to meet, to get to know, and that fills me with joy,” she told the BBC.

Rev. Hudson-Wilkin, who is also a chaplain to Queen Elizabeth II, led prayers at the wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle in May 2018.

Humble beginnings in Montego Bay

Hudson-Wilkin was born on January 19, 1961, in Montego Bay, St. James – having been raised by her father and aunt when her mother left the island, bound for England after giving birth.


She was educated at Montego Bay High School and at the tender age of 14, Hudson decided to join the ministry.

“I simply had this overwhelming sense that this was what I was called to do,” she said in a 2012 interview in the Daily Telegraph.

Congratulating her, Most Rev Justin Welby, Archbishop of Canterbury, said: “Through much struggle and suffering in her life she has become one of the most exceptional of Christian leaders showing, in word and deed, confidence in Jesus Christ as life, liberty and love.”

Bishops lay hands on Rose’s head to ordain her (Photo: Graham Lacdao, St Paul’s Cathedral )

“We welcome her, warmly confident that God who has led her this far will walk with her and speak through her,” Welby told the BBC.