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Tributes to the Speaker’s Chaplain

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 3:51 pm on 31st October 2019.

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Photo of Luke Graham Luke Graham Conservative, Ochil and South Perthshire 3:51 pm, 31st October 2019

I appreciate the opportunity to pay a tribute to Rose. Like many in this House, I had experiences here that, when the personal combined with the professional, meant that I found myself having what might professionally be called “a bit of a wobble”—I know that many colleagues from my intake have had similar experiences. The one thing I would say about Rose is this: she was there. Her office is one of duty, but everyone would agree that her performance goes far beyond that. She makes time to see people, and gives them the opportunity to speak. She listens, far beyond the level that her office would necessarily require.

Rose has set an incredible example and a fantastic precedent for new Members and the future chaplain to follow. More broadly, the prayers that she leads before each sitting of the House give us the chance to reflect. In a time when we are constantly on social media and looking at emails, iPads and phones, that gives us a moment to step back in silence, listen to the words being said and think about the principles that are laid out here and that make this place and make us who we are. That is one of the greatest contributions that Rose has made to this place. Both personally and professionally, Rose has helped all Members strive to become the better part of ourselves while we are here, and I thank her on behalf of myself, my colleagues and our families.

Question put and agreed to.

Resolved,

That this House
congratulates the Reverend Prebendary Rose Hudson-Wilkin on her twenty-eight years of ordained ministry in the Church of England, nine years of which have been in the service of Mr Speaker and this House as Chaplain to the Speaker, the first woman and the first BAME holder of that post;
expresses its appreciation for the generous, ecumenical and compassionate spirit of her work among hon. Members and staff of the House;
and wishes her every success in her forthcoming ministry as Bishop of Dover and Bishop in Canterbury.