The Very Rev.
The Very Rev. Penny Bridges answered the call to serve as the fourth Dean of St Paul’s Cathedral in 2014. A native of Northern Ireland and lifelong Anglican, Penny received her education at Wells Cathedral School and Clare College, Cambridge. She pursued a career in data processing, which took her and her husband from England to New Hampshire in 1985. There her two sons were born and she experienced a call to ordination in the Episcopal Church. In 1997 she graduated from Berkeley at Yale Divinity School with a Master of Divinty, summa cum laude and moved to Virginia.
Penny served six years as Associate Rector of Grace Episcopal Church, Alexandria, and eleven years as the third Rector of St. Francis Episcopal Church, Great Falls. St. Paul’s magnificent music program is a good fit for Penny, who is herself an accomplished violist and singer. Since her arrival at St. Paul’s, Penny has focused on leading the church into the 21st century (the “emerging church” model), updating the administrative systems, overseeing the creation of the digital “Faith to Go” curriculum, installing exterior lighting to give the cathedral more visibility, and developing strong relationships with leaders of other faith communities and of city government.
Penny provides leadership in the Diocese too, currently serving on the diocesan Standing Committee and teaching on ecumenism and interfaith relations in the School for Ministry. In her free time Penny enjoys studying Spanish, playing viola in chamber groups and orchestras, and all the benefits of living by the ocean.