Asian Women's Resource Centre

Womenet

First Women Priests in the Anglican Church in Sri Lanka

Vol 11 No. 2 October 2006

The first ordination of women in the Anglican Church in Sri Lanka took place on 14th September (Holy Cross Day) 2006, at the Cathedral of the Living Saviour, at Bauddhaloka Mawatha, Colombo 7.

Malini Devananda, Chandrika Mayurawathi and Glory Jeyaraj, belonging to the Diocese of Colombo were ordained by the Rt. Revd. Duleep de Chickera, Bishop of Colombo, amidst a large gathering of clergy and lay. Also present were four Buddhist monks and a Bhikkuni (female monk) with whom Malini works in a Peace Organisation. Malini is also a member of the Coordinating Team of AWRC.

The three women waded through the waters of the baptistry, signifying that the beginning of all ministries is through baptism. After the laying on of hands by the bishop and clergy, Revd. Malini, Revd. Chandrika and Revd. Glory were vested with stole and chasuble. The bishop then presented the new priests to the people who broke out into loud applause. After greeting the people assembled, the three women priests with the bishop concelebrated the eucharist.