Former British actor elected bishop in Australia

An evangelist and former actor, who is currently the rector of an central London church, has been elected as the new Bishop of Riverina. 

63 year old the Rev Alan Robert (Rob) Gillion, is Rector of Holy Trinity, Sloane Square, and St Saviour, Upper Chelsea, in the Diocese of London.

He is a member of the Archbishops’ (of Canterbury and York) College of Evangelists and a contributor and advisor to the BBC for religious broadcasts, taking part in radio programmes such as ‘Pause for Thought’ .

The new bishop-elect trained as an actor at the University of London and worked an actor and theatre director for 12 years before entering the ministry.

Prior to ordination he studied at the Theological College of Salisbury and Wells.

Bishop-elect Gillion was ordained in 1983 in the Diocese of Norwich and has served also in the Dioceses of Southwark and Hong Kong before returning to London in 1999. He is married to Janine whom he met when they were both drama students. They have two sons, one of whom lives in Melbourne.

The Diocese of Riverina covers more than one-third of rural New South Wales, including centres such as Griffith, Broken Hill, and Deniliquin. 

The Diocese is aptly named, being watered by ‘four rivers’ – Murray, Murrumbidgee, Darling and Lachlan.

The new bishop was elected at a special synod and will be consecrated and enthroned as Bishop of Riverina on Friday 15th August 2014 at Saint Alban’s Cathedral, Griffith.

Reprinted from Sydney Anglicans.

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