Bishop Peter announces his plans to retire

The Right Reverend Peter Eagles, The Lord Bishop of Sodor and Man, has announced he is to retire from the role after a tenure of nearly seven years.

Bishop Peter retires in the late Autumn and will move with his wife Gail to southern England to be closer to family at the end of October.

Gail has also served the Diocese in a variety of ways since 2017 – see more below.

The announcement of his impending retirement was initially made on Wednesday evening 8 March to the Diocesan Synod of the Diocese of Sodor and Man, held in St Ninian’s Church, Douglas..

Bishop Peter’s announcement of his retirement can be read in full here. 

Bishop Peter will delegate the Diocesan Bishop’s powers during the impending vacancy to the Right Reverend Mark Davies, Bishop of Middleton in Manchester Diocese.

It was summer of 2017 when Bishop Peter officially joined the Diocese after the initial announcement of his appointment in March of the same year. He was consecrated by Archbishop John Sentamu at York Minster. This was followed by an Installation Service at Cathedral Isle of Man, Peel a few weeks later.

During his tenure as the ninety third Bishop of Sodor and Man, Bishop Peter has overseen a stabilisation programme to reposition the work and focus of the Diocese.

In his letter today, Bishop Peter says: “There is rarely a good time for a bishop to step down from the ministry of care for a diocese, but, continuing to discern my vocation in the light of God’s will, I believe that now is the right moment.”

God willing, his plan is to lay down his Diocesan Pastoral Staff to the Dean in the Cathedral at a date to be confirmed in late October.

In his time with the Diocese, Bishop Peter has been part of many extraordinary moments and has led the Diocese through a series of key events; most recently the pandemic during which clergy and laity in churches across the Diocese stepped up and supported their local communities in many creative ways.

Bishop Peter has been supported since his appointment by his wife Gail.

Gail accompanied Bishop Peter in walking down the aisle at his enthronement service in Peel Cathedral, emphasising they were coming to serve the Diocese together as a team.

The couple are pictured here at Bishop Peter’s consecration service at York Minster.

Gail has also made a significant impact across the Diocese in her own right over the past seven years, particularly as Diocesan President of the Mothers’ Union from 2019 – 2021.

In this role, Gail supported members of the MU in upholding their Christian ethos values. Gail has also provided pastoral support to clergy spouses across the Island as well as running a rolling programme of hospitality.