New Dean for Exeter Cathedral

PUBLISHED: 09:19 15 December 2011

Downing Street confirms appointment.

Canon Jonathan Draper has been appointed Dean of Exeter Cathedral.

Downing Street confirmed that Canon Draper, who is currently Canon Theologian at York Minster, will succeed Jonathan Meyrick, who left last year to become bishop of Lynn, in Norfolk.

Canon Draper was born in Boston, Massachusetts and lived until in the United States until he finished his first degree.

He moved to the UK to study at Durham University where he studied for a BA and PhD in theology. At Durham, he met his wife Maggie and they married in 1979.

Jonathan said: “Maggie and I are very excited about coming to Exeter - to a beautiful Cathedral, a vibrant city, and a county with may riches to explore.

“Though neither of us know the area very well, Maggie’s mother lives not far away in West Dorset, so we have explored the area a little over the years and look forward to getting to know it better. I am also really pleased to coming to a city with a Premiership Rugby team and a county with such fantastic countryside to walk in.”

The Bishop of Exeter, the Rt Revd Michael Langrish, said: “I am very much looking forward to welcoming Canon Jonathan Draper as the 70th Dean of Exeter Cathedral. He is a very considerable person with a wide range of gifts and a rich past experience. In particular he is a theologian of note, who has written especially about the relationship of religious faith to issues in public life. He and his wife Maggie both have much to bring to the life of the Cathedral, the diocese and the city of Exeter”

Jonathan was ordained in 1983 and has served in parishes in the diocese of Manchester, before becoming a lecturer in theology at a Theological College and in the University of Oxford. He then went on to be vicar of Putney, before taking up his position at York Minster in 2000, where he has oversight of the Minster’s educational work.

He is widely known for his work in setting up the Ebor Lectures, which give the church and other faiths a forum to discuss important issues such as the financial crisis, terrorism and what makes a good society.

Jonathan is also a Trustee of BasicNeeds, a mental health and development NGO (www.basicneeds.org) working with mentally ill people in some of the poorest countries of the world.

Maggie, a trained specialist social worker, is a full time manager of community nursing services, end of life care services and community hospitals for York. The couple have three children, aged 16, 19 and 21.

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