The UK’s first serving transgender vicar dies aged 60

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Reverend Carol Stone, the first serving Church of England transgender priest, has died from cancer at the age of 60.

Rev Stone died on Saturday following a battle with pancreatic cancer.

The vicar of St Philip’s Church in Upper Stratton and St Peter’s Church in Penhill, North Yorkshire, Rev Stone transitioned in 2000, whereupon the church decided there was no ethical or ecclesiastical reason why she could not continue to serve.

On her return to the pulpit she said: “This sermon hasn’t been just three months in the making if the truth be told, I’ve been waiting to write it for the best part of 46 years – never dreaming one day I might.

“After almost 23 years of preaching I felt like a young curate again preparing for one’s first sermon.”

Rev Stone was ordained in 1978 and served at Bradford-on-Avon in Wiltshire.

She was chaplain and head of religious studies at Dauntsey’s School, West Lavington, before taking up the post at Upper Stratton in 1996.

A regular contributor to radio, she received a National Broadcasting Award from the Sandford St Martin Trust in 1979.

The Bishop of Swindon, Lee Rayfield, said: “She was a really true priest who overcame a huge amount in her life.”

The Bishop of Bristol, Mike Hill, a friend of Rev Stone said she “will be missed by all who knew her”.

Others also paid tribute on Twitter.

Including the leader of the local Scouts’ group.