The two priests will take up the work of Canon Ann Waizeneker who is retiring from full time ministry having fulfilled this role along with her parish responsibilities since 2017.
Helen is Associate Vicar of St Peter’s, Brighton: she is also Assistant Rural Dean of Brighton and an Assistant Diocesan Director of Ordinands.
Martha is Associate Vicar in the Uckfield plurality and works part-time as a nurse practitioner.
The Bishop said today: “The appointment of Helen and Martha feels like an expression of confidence among ordained women in the Diocese, with an unquestioned recognition that they are integral to its life.
“Helen and Martha will undoubtedly ensure that, in nurturing vocations and making appointments, we continue to shape the exercise of ordained ministry in ways that reflect the needs and aspirations of the parishes we serve.”
The new Dean and Assistant Dean will decide between them how to share the role, which includes membership of the Bishop’s Staff Meeting where the work to expand the number of ordained women, and the range of posts they hold, is closely monitored.
“Leadership and mission in the Church needs the unique voice and experiences of women called to ordained ministry,” Helen observed, on being appointed, while Martha spoke of the “great women who saw beyond themselves” and who have influenced and sustained her own ministry.
They will be commissioned in the Cathedral at Evensong at 3pm on Sunday, February 6.