Remembering Sheffield priest after sudden death aged 46

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A funeral service will be held next week for a Sheffield priest who died suddenly aged 46.

The Rev Diane Kershaw was a priest at St Philip’s, in The Printhouse on North Church Street in the city centre, and leader of a ‘mission house’ based at St Paul’s vicarage on Wordsworth Avenue in Parson Cross. It is believed she suffered a sudden illness at home in Parson Cross. The medical cause of her death has yet to be confirmed.

Rev Kershaw was licensed at Sheffield Cathedral to the Bishop’s Mission Order – an initiative that works outside usual geographical parishes – in July this year, and was due to be licensed next month as the new senior leader of St Philip’s.

Rev Kershaw attended Sheffield University, graduating in 1992, and completed her theological training at the Yorkshire Ministry Course in 2009, being ordained as deacon in 2011, then as a priest the following year. Diane was also a UK leader in the Order of Mission, an evangelical community.

Under Diane’s leadership, the mission house at St Paul’s Vicarage achieved significant growth and became a wider resource for the church in its work on the North Sheffield estates. Before being licensing to the Bishop’s Mission Order, Diane worked as a minister and assistant curate at Shiregreen St James and St Christopher, and Sheffield St Paul’s Wordsworth Avenue from 2011, during which time she began the mission house at St Paul’s Vicarage. She also spent time at St Thomas, Philadelphia.

She is survived by her parents, Betty and Tony, sisters Judith and Louise, nephews Matthew, Nicholas, Robert and Evan, and niece Abigail. The funeral service is at St Thomas Philadelphia on Tuesday, January 3, at 2pm followed by a private burial.