The Archbishop of Armagh, the Most Revd John McDowell, has appointed the Revd Dr Heather Morris, the General Secretary of the Methodist Church in Ireland, as an Ecumenical Canon of St Patrick’s Church of Ireland Cathedral, Armagh.
The installation of the new Canon will take place at a service of Choral Evensong on Tuesday, September 13 2022, at 7.30pm. During this service Dr Kenneth Milne, the Church of Ireland Historiographer, will also be installed as a Lay Canon.
Provision for two Ecumenical Canons was included in a new Statute governing St Patrick’s Cathedral enacted by the General Synod of the Church of Ireland in 2011. The Ecumenical Canons are appointed by the Archbishop of Armagh for a term of five years, which may be renewed.
They join the Dean, Precentor, Chancellor, Treasurer, Archdeacons and four Prebendaries as members of the Cathedral Chapter (but may not vote). Dr Morris will succeed the Revd Dr Tony Davidson who retired at the beginning of the summer.
Welcoming the appointment, the Dean of Armagh, the Very Revd Shane Forster, said: “I have known and worked alongside Dr Heather Morris in the Church Leaders’ Group (Ireland) for many years and am well acquainted with her many gifts and skills.
“Heather is an eloquent preacher with a pastoral heart, who is genuinely interested in and committed to ecumenical outreach across this island, and I know that she will receive a warm welcome in her new role in Armagh.”
In accepting the appointment, Dr Morris said: “The Cathedral, placed as it is in the ecclesiastical capital, has played a significant role in the history of Ireland and, continues to do so under the leadership of the Archbishop, not least as a place in which any and all are welcomed in Christ’s name.”
“I am honoured to be invited to serve as a Canon and look forward to being part of the life and witness of the Cathedral.”