March 2024 commemorates a significant milestone in the history of the Church of England: the 30th anniversary of the ordination of women as priests. In honor of this historic occasion and to express gratitude for the invaluable contributions of women in priestly ministry, clergy and congregations from across the Diocese convened for a special Eucharist service.

The service commenced with a warm welcome from The Very Revd Jo Kelly-Moore, Dean of St Albans, setting the tone for a momentous gathering. The Reverend Christina H M Rees CBE, a distinguished figure renowned for her dedication to theological education and women's ministry, delivered a thought-provoking sermon. With her wealth of experience and insight, Reverend Rees inspired attendees to reflect on the journey of women in priesthood and the profound impact of their service on the Church and society.

Guiding the congregation through the service was Bishop Jane Mainwaring. As the first female bishop in the Diocese, Bishop Mainwaring's leadership exemplifies the progress made in embracing diversity and promoting equality in religious leadership roles.

The service of celebration served as a poignant reminder of the strides made towards gender equality within the Church of England and highlighted the ongoing commitment to fostering an inclusive and welcoming community for all. As clergy and congregants joined in prayer and reflection, they honored the legacy of women in priesthood and reaffirmed their dedication to building a more equitable and compassionate society.

The event not only commemorated past achievements but also galvanised individuals to continue advocating for gender equality and diversity within the Church and beyond. Through shared fellowship and worship, attendees left the service inspired and empowered to carry forward the spirit of inclusivity and affirmation exemplified by the ordination of women as priests 30 years ago.