Keith Newton (prelate)

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The Most Reverend Monsignor
Keith Newton
Ordinary of the Personal Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham
Keith Newton .jpg
Appointed 15 January 2011
Predecessor new post
Ordination 15 January 2011
by Vincent Nichols
Personal details
Born (1952-04-10) 10 April 1952 (age 62)
Liverpool, United Kingdom
Nationality British
Denomination Roman Catholic
(formerly Anglican)
Spouse Gill
Children One daughter, Lucy, two sons, Tom and James
Previous post Bishop of Richborough (Church of England; 2002–2010)
Alma mater King's College London (BD)
Christchurch College, Canterbury (PGCE)
Styles of
The Most Monsignor
Keith Newton PA
Reference style Monsignor
Spoken style Monsignor

Keith Newton PA (born 10 April 1952) is an English prelate of the Roman Catholic Church. On 15 January 2011, Newton was named as the first ordinary of the Personal Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham.[1] Prior to his reception into the Roman Catholic Church in 2011[clarification needed], Newton had served as a priest and bishop of the Church of England, most recently having served as Bishop of Richborough in the Province of Canterbury from 2002 until 31 December 2010.[2]

Anglican ministry[edit]

Newton studied divinity King's College London and went on to earn a Postgraduate Certificate in Education at Christ Church College Canterbury before completing his theological studies as an Anglican ordinand at St Augustine's College, Canterbury.[3][4]

Newton held the following positions in the Church of England:

  • 1975-1978, Curate of Great Ilford St Mary, Chelmsford
  • 1978-1985, Team Vicar at St Matthew’s Wimbledon in the Wimbledon Team Ministry, Southwark
  • 1985-1991, Rector of Blantyre, Malawi and then Dean of Blantyre Cathedral
  • 1991-1993, Priest-in-Charge of Holy Nativity Knowle, Bristol
  • 1993-2001, Vicar of Holy Nativity Knowle, Bristol
  • 1997-2001, Priest-in-Charge of All Hallows, Easton

From 1995 to 1998 Newton was Rural Dean of Brislington. From 1998 to 2001 he was area dean of the new deanery of Bristol South.

On 7 March 2002, Newton was ordained as an Anglican bishop by George Carey, who was then Archbishop of Canterbury. Newton was subsequently named Bishop of Richborough and provincial episcopal visitor for the Province of Canterbury in 2002.[5] He held this post until 31 December 2010.

Ordination in the Roman Catholic Church[edit]

Keith Newton and his wife Gill after Newton's ordination as a Catholic deacon

In 2008 Newton met officials of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith to discuss the possibility of joining the Roman Catholic Church.[6]

On 8 November 2010, Newton announced his intention to leave the Church of England at the end of the year in order to join the proposed personal ordinariate of the Roman Catholic Church for former Anglicans.[7][8]

Newton was received into the Roman Catholic Church on 1 January 2011, at Westminster Cathedral, with his wife Gill, by Bishop Alan Hopes. Also received at the same ceremony were Andrew Burnham (former Bishop of Ebbsfleet), John Broadhurst (former Bishop of Fulham) and his wife Judith and three former sisters of the Society of St Margaret (Walsingham) - Sister Carolyne Joseph, Sister Jane Louise and Sister Wendy Renate.[9] On 13 January 2011 he was ordained to the diaconate with the two other former Church of England bishops, Andrew Burnham and John Broadhurst.[10] Two days later, on 15 January 2011, they were ordained to the priesthood by Vincent Nichols, Archbishop of Westminster, in Westminster Cathedral. On this date Pope Benedict XVI appointed Newton the first ordinary of the Personal Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham in England and Wales.[11] Being married, he is not permitted to be ordained to the episcopate.[12]

On 17 March 2011, it was announced that Pope Benedict XVI had granted Newton the title of protonotary apostolic (the highest ranking non-episcopal honorific title for Roman Catholic clergy and the highest grade of monsignor.)[2] Although Newton, as ordinary, does not have an episcopal ministry, he has been granted the use of pontificals (including the mitre, pectoral cross, episcopal ring and crozier etc.) by the Holy See in the same manner as some abbots.

Personal life[edit]

Newton is married to Gill, a teacher, with whom he has three adult children; Lucy, Tom and James.[13]


  • Keith Newton Esq (1952–1975)
  • The Revd Keith Newton (1975–1995)
  • The Revd Canon Keith Newton (1995–2002)
  • The Rt Revd Keith Newton (2002–2010)
  • Keith Newton Esq (1–13 January 2011)
  • The Revd Keith Newton (13 January 2011–17 March 2011)
  • The Most Revd Monsignor Keith Newton PA (17 March 2011–present)[14]


Church of England titles
Preceded by
Edwin Barnes
Bishop of Richborough
Succeeded by
Norman Banks
Catholic Church titles
New title Ordinary of the Personal Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham