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Paul starts as new operations and finance director

The Diocese of East Anglia has appointed experienced public servant and diaconate candidate, Paul Raynes, as its new Director of Operations and Finance.

Paul will be working for Bishop Alan Hopes and the diocesan trustees to oversee diocesan financial affairs, making sure that the church’s resources are used effectively to support its mission.

Paul joins the curial team at Poringland after a thirty-year career in public service. His most recent role has been as a director at the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Combined Authority, responsible for major transport projects, planning, and the environment.

Before that, he worked at the Local Government Association, leading financial and policy negotiations with the government on behalf of councils, at Essex County Council, at the Treasury, where he ran a Cabinet Minister’s office, and at the Foreign Office, where he served as financial attache at in the Paris Embassy. Paul has also had a spell as a financial journalist writing about investments and companies.

Outside work, Paul is an experienced school governor and chairs the governing body at a large Catholic school. He is also a candidate for the Permanent Diaconate in his third year of formation. His first degree is from Cambridge University, where his wife Sarah also studied. The couple have four children and are part of St Etheldreda’s parish in Ely.

Paul said: “Pope Francis has said that each one of us is a mission. I hope I can help to make sure that the resources of the church in East Anglia are used as effectively and efficiently as possible to support Bishop Alan and the individual parishes in proclaiming the Gospel.

“I am looking forward to meeting as many people as possible over the coming months to learn how the diocesan finance team can best serve our local mission. This is also an important moment, with so many people facing financial challenges, for thinking about how we can make sure that the Church’s investments and property are used wisely and sustainably with an eye to environmental sustainability, in line with the teaching the Holy Father has set out in his encyclical Laudato Si.”

Bishop Alan said: “I am pleased to welcome Paul to this role and am looking forward to having his professional support in the stewardship of the resources of the diocese.”

Pictured above is new Director of Operations and Finance Paul Raynes.