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Fully alive as the people God made them to be

On Wednesday 24 April, The Venerable Catharine Mabuza inducted and installed the new vicar of Rowledge, Steve Green. This was the first time the new Archdeacon of Surrey performed this duty, part of the role of Archdeacon to support and resource both parishes and clergy.

Catharine took Steve to the door of Rowledge church, where the churchwarden handed him keys to the church. Steve then rang the church bell, to signify that a new incumbent has arrived.

Catharine said of the first time she has performed this duty: “It’s a real privilege to do this for an incumbent. Having been an incumbent myself, I know how significant this moment is for the person who is taking on the lead role of serving the church and the community. 

“Since I started, I’ve enjoyed being able to support clergy in their ministry. Installing and inducting a vicar is a formal occasion, but it is also symbolic of what being an Archdeacon means to me; giving ongoing support and resourcing to parishes and clergy.”

The new Vicar at Rowledge, Steve, said: “Catharine was amazingly friendly and re-assuring during my installation.  She phoned me beforehand to check that I was okay and, on the day, was superbly composed, gracious and competent.  It was as if she had been an archdeacon for a long time.”

Since she started as Archdeacon, Catharine has met many clergy and laity across the archdeaconry. She has worked with parishes to find and appoint new incumbents and care for church buildings. She has supported clergy wellbeing and offered guidance to Churchwardens and Area Deans. She has contributed to the overall mission and strategy of the diocese alongside the Bishops and fellow Archdeacon.

Catharine is inspired by the words of St Irenaeus, that ‘the Glory of God is a human being fully alive’, and in her role as Archdeacon wants to support and inspire those she leads and works alongside to be fully alive as the people God made them to be.

This year is a poignant year for Catharine to join the Diocese Guildford as it’s 25 years since she went to her discernment panel for ordination, which was in this Diocese. The panel was held in her now neighbouring Archdeaconry of Dorking, at St Columba’s House in Woking. She was ordained in the Diocese of Monmouth in 2001 having completed ordination training at Ridley Hall in Cambridge.

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