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Meet the Chaplain

Father Gareth Rayner-Williams is our newly appointed school Chaplain. He was born and brought up in a small village in North Wales, where the majority of his family (including a twin brother) still live.

Father Gareth holds a BA (Hons) in Theology and Economics from the University of Wales, Lampeter and an MA in Political Theology from Hull University. He trained for the ordained ministry at Westcott House, Cambridge and was priested in 1991, when he was aged 24. Later, in his mid-thirties, Father Gareth completed his PGCE in Secondary Religious Education at Trinity College, Carmarthen and is currently part-way through a PhD at Lancaster University, researching issues of Education and Social Justice.

Father Gareth has worked in various educational contexts throughout his ministry, having previously been a University Chaplain, a Vice-Principal of a Theological College in Cardiff (teaching Theology at Cardiff University), Head of Religious Education in a state school and then Assistant Headteacher and Head of Sixth Form at the Bishop of Llandaff High School. Most recently, he was the School Priest and Senior Teacher at St Teilo’s Church in Wales High School. In all, Father Gareth has spent more than thirty years working as a priest within education. This is the first time for Father Gareth to work in a Cathedral School context and he says he is ‘thrilled to be working in such an enriching environment where young people are given every opportunity to flourish and become the person God is calling them to be: learning how best to love’.

His interests include singing and learning to play the piano. He has sung with various choirs, including the BBC Chorus and the Chapel Choir at Pembroke College, Cambridge. He also enjoys working on classic cars (he is currently hoping to return a yellow 1979 Mini to the road). In addition, he also has an interest in restoring vintage typewriters and has twenty or more in his collection.

Father Gareth will be responsible for the spiritual well-being of the School, including the provision of the chapel and cathedral worship in which the community participates. He will also be the Chorister Pastoral Tutor and will be teaching Religious Studies.

Father Gareth will offer sacramental and pastoral care along with spiritual guidance to the whole school community. He is available to pupils, staff and other members of the Cathedral School community at all times inside the school term and, where possible, within the holidays as well. Members of the school community will be able to turn to Father Gareth for support with significant family events including baptisms, weddings and funerals. If you would like Father Gareth to preside over an event like this at your local church, it is important that you speak to your local minister first as they will need to give their permission. Father Gareth can be contacted directly at rayner-williamsg@ cathedral-school.co.uk or via the school reception at 029 2056 3179.