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Published on 28 March 2024

The Rt Revd and Rt Hon Dame Sarah Mullally DBE, the Bishop of London, will be the next Chair of Christian Aid, the international development and humanitarian agency of the British and Irish churches.

Bishop Sarah has served as the 133rd Bishop of London since 2018, and is the first woman to hold the position. She sits in the House of Lords as one of the Lords Spiritual.

Bishop Sarah has been outspoken on issues of poverty and justice in London, the UK and globally for many years. She has recently highlighted the dramatic increase in numbers of newly-recognised refugees to the UK experiencing homelessness and the role played by church communities across London in supporting them. In recent debates on the UK Government’s Safety of Rwanda (Asylum and Immigration) Bill, she argued in favour of asylum seekers’ rights and of the need for the UK to maintain its long-standing leadership in the international development community.

Bishop Sarah also chaired the UK Commission on Bereavement, set up in response to the Covid-19 pandemic’s profound impact on those who faced bereavement and experienced loss. In 2022, she led the Health Inequalities Action Group, which published a series of recommendations exploring London’s health inequalities and how faith groups can, and do, contribute to the health of their communities.

Bishop Sarah, incoming Chair of Christian Aid, said:

'I have long admired Christian Aid and its steadfast commitment to combating poverty and injustice and campaigning for change.

This work has never been more vital than now, as the climate crisis forces us to face questions about our stewardship of creation, and violence and conflict around the world acutely undermine God’s agenda of justice and peace.

Sarah Mullally Christian Aid Chair of the Board of Trustees headshot

'Here in the Capital, I see first-hand the huge support from parishes and church communities for Christian Aid’s mission, which resonates with our own vision and values, as well as those of the Church of England and beyond.

'As Chair, I hope to bring not only the knowledge and experience I have gained as Bishop of London but my experience as a nurse and my faith as a Christian. I look forward to supporting Patrick and the Christian Aid family.'

Announcing the appointment, Christian Aid’s CEO Patrick Watt said:

Image credits and information i
Credit: Christian Aid
Christian Aid Chair, Bishop Sarah Mullally and CEO Patrick Watt

'We are delighted to welcome Bishop Sarah as the new chair of Christian Aid.

'Throughout her church ministry and her nursing career, Bishop Sarah has been committed to our goal of ending the injustice of extreme poverty. She has been a powerful advocate for women’s rights, and for dignity and equality for all people. She shares our vision of working in partnership with others to create a just and peaceful world.

'Her faith, leadership, and breadth of experience will be invaluable in helping to guide Christian Aid as we navigate a fast-changing NGO landscape, in which our work is as urgent as it’s ever been. We look forward to working with her.'

Bishop Sarah was sworn in as a member of the Privy Council on 14th March 2018 and became Dean of HM’s Chapels Royal on 11th July 2019.

In her early career, Bishop Sarah was a nurse at St Thomas’ Hospital, and the Royal Marsden Hospital in London and held several leadership roles in health before becoming Chief Nursing Officer for England in the Department of Health. She left this role in 2004 to pursue full-time ministry in the Church of England, serving her first curacy in South London.

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