Jan McFarlane

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Jan McFarlane
Canon of Lichfield
& honorary assistant bishop
Print-carol-coslett-Archdeacon-2018-133-2-full-res (25895052787) (Jan McFarlane cropped).jpg
McFarlane in March 2018
Diocese Diocese of Lichfield
In office3 April 2020 present
Other post(s)Diocesan Director of Communications (Diocese of Norwich; 1999–2016)
Archdeacon of Norwich (15 March 2009 2016)
Bishop of Repton (2016–2020)
Acting Bishop of Derby (20182019)
Ordination1993 (deacon)
1994 (priest)
by  Keith Sutton
Consecration29 June 2016
by  Justin Welby
Personal details
Janet Elizabeth McFarlane

(1964-11-25) 25 November 1964 (age 58)
Nationality British
Denomination Anglican
ParentsDavid and Anne McFarlane
Andrew Ridoutt
(m. 2004)
Education Blythe Bridge High School
Alma mater University of Sheffield
University of Durham
Cranmer Hall, Durham

Janet Elizabeth "Jan" McFarlane (born 25 November 1964) is a British Church of England bishop and former speech and language therapist. She has been a Canon Residentiary of Lichfield Cathedral and honorary assistant bishop in the Diocese of Lichfield since 2020. She previously served as Bishop of Repton (the suffragan bishop of the Diocese of Derby) since her consecration as a bishop on 29 June 2016; [1] [2] and (additionally) Acting Bishop of Derby from 31 August 2018 to February 2019. [3]


Early life and education

Jan McFarlane was born on 25 November 1964 in Stoke-on-Trent, Staffordshire, England. [4] [5] [6] She was educated at Blythe Bridge High School, a state secondary school in Blythe Bridge near Stoke-on-Trent. [7] She studied at the University of Sheffield, graduating with a Bachelor of Medical Science (BMedSci) degree in 1987. [4] She then worked as a Speech Therapist in the National Health Service and lived in North Staffordshire. [8] She specialised in teaching deaf children to speak. [5]

Having been selected for ordination, Jan McFarlane underwent a number of years of formation. She studied theology at St John's College, Durham, and graduated from the University of Durham with a Bachelor of Arts (BA) degree in 1992. [4] She then underwent a further year of training at Cranmer Hall, Durham, an open evangelical Anglican theological college, [4] [9] completing a Diploma in Ministry (DipMin) in 1993. [6]

Ordained ministry

McFarlane was ordained in the Church of England as a deacon in 1993 at Lichfield Cathedral. [4] [9] From 1993 to 1994, she served as parish deacon in the Stafford Team Ministry in the Diocese of Lichfield. [4] She was ordained as a priest in 1994. [4] She was one of the first female priests as 1994 was the first year that the Church of England ordained women to the priesthood. [10] From 1994 to 1996, she remained in the Stafford to serve her curacy as part of the Stafford Team Ministry. [4] [9] From 1996 to 1999, she was a chaplain and minor canon of Ely Cathedral in the Diocese of Ely. [4]

In 1999, she moved to the Diocese of Norwich to take up the appointment of Diocesan Director of Communications. [4] From 2001 to 2009, she was additionally chaplain to Graham James, Bishop of Norwich. [4] [9] She was selected as the next Archdeacon of Norwich in 2008. [8] On 15 March 2009, she was installed as Archdeacon in Norwich Cathedral. [9] Upon her appointment, she became one of only nine female archdeacons out of a total of 112 in the Church of England and the first in her diocese. [8] From 2015, she also served as Warden of Readers for the diocese. [11]

Jan McFarlane was first elected to the General Synod of the Church of England in 2005. [7] She is a supporter of the ordination of women as bishops. [12] She was a member of the General Synod that approved the consecration of women to the episcopate. [13]

Episcopal ministry

On 26 February 2016, Jan McFarlane was announced as the next Bishop of Repton, suffragan bishop in the Diocese of Derby. [10] She was consecrated a bishop by Justin Welby, Archbishop of Canterbury, on 29 June 2016. [1] [2] She was welcomed into the Diocese of Derby as Bishop of Repton on 7 September 2016, during service at Derby Cathedral. [14]

It was announced in January 2020 that she would be moving to become a Residentiary Canon ("Canon Custos") of Lichfield Cathedral, [15] and an honorary assistant bishop of the Diocese of Lichfield, the following April. [16] She was duly licensed to those roles on 3 April 2020. [17]

Personal life

In 2004, McFarlane married Andrew Ridoutt. [6] Her husband works as a television cameraman. [10]

In February 2014, McFarlane was diagnosed with breast cancer. As part of her treatment, she underwent surgery, chemotherapy and radiotherapy. She shared her story with a local newspaper, the Eastern Daily Press , and "urged other cancer patients to not hide away from the disease". [18]

Selected works

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  1. 1 2 Diocese of Derby — The Bishop of Repton (Archived 22 October 2016 and accessed 28 July 2021) & (Accessed 28 July 2021)
  2. 1 2 Twitter — Adrian Harris (Accessed 29 June 2016)
  3. "Bishop Jan writes…". www.derby.anglican.org. Archived from the original on 2 September 2018.
  4. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 "Janet Elizabeth McFarlane" . Crockford's Clerical Directory (online ed.). Church House Publishing . Retrieved 30 November 2015.
  5. 1 2 "Norwich vicar Jan's debt to Dawn French". Network Norwich. 15 October 2008. Retrieved 24 November 2015.
  6. 1 2 3 "McFARLANE, Ven. Janet Elizabeth". Who's Who 2016. Oxford University Press. November 2015. Retrieved 13 November 2016.
  7. 1 2 "Archdeacon of Norwich set to be made a bishop". Network Norfolk. 26 February 2016. Retrieved 26 February 2016.
  8. 1 2 3 "First-ever female archdeacon set for Norwich". Network Norfolk. 20 June 2008. Retrieved 24 November 2015.
  9. 1 2 3 4 5 "Archdeacon of Norwich". Diocese of Norwich. The Church of England. Retrieved 24 November 2015.
  10. 1 2 3 "Suffragan Bishop of Repton: Janet Elizabeth McFarlane". GOV.UK. Prime Minister's Office, 10 Downing Street. 26 February 2016. Retrieved 26 February 2016.
  11. "Archdeacon of Norwich to be made a bishop". Diocese of Norwich. Church of England. 26 February 2016. Retrieved 26 February 2016.
  12. "Women Bishops: Enough Waiting – Jan McFarlane's message to General Synod". Archbishop of Canterbury. 15 November 2012. Retrieved 24 November 2015.
  13. "The Archdeacon of Norwich, the Venerable Jan McFarlane, on today's women bishops vote". BBC Radio Norfolk. 14 July 2014. Retrieved 24 November 2015.
  14. "Welcome service for the Bishop of Repton". derbycathedral.org. Derby Cathedral. 7 September 2016. Retrieved 7 November 2016.
  15. "New Canon Custos at Lichfield Cathedral".
  16. "UK news in brief". www.churchtimes.co.uk. 31 January 2020. Retrieved 7 February 2020.
  17. @BpJanMc (3 April 2020). "Thanks to modern technology I am now officially commissioned as Canon Custos @LichfieldCath and Assistant Bishop @Lichfield_CofE. Apparently I kept disappearing off the screen. I promise not to do this in real life" (Tweet) via Twitter.
  18. Gretton, Adam (30 August 2014). "'The more open we can be, the less frightening cancer becomes' – the Archdeacon of Norwich, the Ven Jan McFarlane, shares her story about her fight with breast cancer". Eastern Daily Press. Retrieved 24 November 2015.