Martine Oborne Becomes Chiswick's Only Woman C of E Vicar

Bishop of Kensington presides over induction at St Michael's Church

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Celebrating with a special cake after the service

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The Rev Martine Oborne has been inducted as Vicar of St Michael's parish and becomes the only woman Church of England vicar in Chiswick.

Martine had been Priest-in-Charge at the parish of St Michael's, Sutton Court for the past three years since she moved to from north London to Chiswick with her family. Following an induction ceremony this week, she is now a Vicar.

Martine said: “My 're-labelling' at the Induction from Priest-in-Charge to Vicar of St Michael's was, I have to admit, not so much about my impeccable behaviour over the past three years - it's more the result of the lifting of the suspension of the benefice which has been in place for the past twenty years.  And this, in turn, reflects the great confidence of the Anglican Church in London - which is currently flourishing and growing. 

"Back in the 1990s the Church in London was looking at merging and rationalising parishes - hence the suspension.  Now not only are independent parishes like ours seen as viable in the long term - but also more and more new churches are being planted and old ones being re-opened.  One example of this is the re-opening of St Albans in Chiswick after standing closed for fifteen years.  So the induction was a great celebration for me personally, for the congregation and parish of St Michael's and also for the Diocese of London.  We all feel very encouraged by what we see as God at work in our city.'

The Rev Oborne is now the 10th vicar in the 100-year history of St Michael's.

The Rt Reverend Paul Williams, Bishop of Kensington presided over the Institution and the Induction of Martine as Vicar, assisted by the Archdeacon of Middlesex, the Venerable Stephan Welch.

Members of St Michael's parish and the wider community were present at the service which was also attended by Conservative MP Mary Macleod, and Rev Richard Moy, vicar at Christ Church Turnham Green.

Martine is married to Peter Oborne, the political commentator, author and documentary filmmaker. They have five children.

During the service, Mary Macleod MP recalled her childhood in Scotland when her father had been a church minister and said that that Martine had been a "shining example" of reaching out to all members of the community.

Representatives of the local community gave some examples of Martine's dynamic contribution, including the setting up of a youth club, an annual street party, and the Heroes of Chiswick WW1 Exhibition.

Martine was curate at St Mary, Islington prior to her appointment at St Michael’s. Before this, her career included investment banking (she was a director of NM Rothschild), and she is a successful author of three novels as well as writing and illustrating five children’s books. She also wrote a play which was performed at the opening of 'Heroes of Chiswick'.

February 25, 2015