THE HIGHEST civic honour Gloucester City Council can confer is to be awarded to the Bishop of Gloucester, the Right Revd Michael Perham.

He will be admitted as an Honorary Freeman of the City at a special meeting of the city council on Thursday, March 27.

He celebrates ten years in the role in May and will retire in November.

In a ministry spanning 38 years, Bishop Michael has served as a curate in Croydon, bishop’s chaplain in Winchester, team rector in Poole, canon precentor in Norwich, and was Dean of Derby before becoming Bishop of Gloucester in 2004.

He exercised a significant national role in the church before becoming a bishop, as Secretary of the Doctrine Commission, as a member of the Liturgical Commission and as one of the architects of Common Worship.

As Bishop of Gloucester, which covers the whole of the county, he has been prominent in the movement for the ordination of women as bishops and is president of Affirming Catholicism and a vice president of WATCH.

Throughout his ministry he has written books on theology, liturgy and spirituality and been in demand as a speaker about worship.

Within the Diocese of Gloucester, he is president or patron of a number of local organisations, including GARAS, GEAR, Cheltenham YMCA, the Star College and Emmaus Gloucester.

He is pro-chancellor of the University of Gloucestershire and vice chairman of the University Council.

Gloucester Mayor, Cllr Chris Chatterton, said he is a charismatic religious leader who has had a remarkable ministry.

“He has helped guide Gloucester through some difficult times as well as helping us celebrate many notable achievements and high points.”