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Tributes have been paid to former Bishop of Lichfield Rt Rev Keith Sutton who has died aged 82, after a long battle with dementia.
The 97th Bishop of Lichfield, Bishop Keith was installed in 1984 and served in the role until he retired in 2003 and moved to Cornwall.
The current Bishop of Lichfield, Rt Rev Dr Michael Ipgrave, said: "My condolences and prayers are with Keith's family at this time.
"Keith served the people and churches of Staffordshire, Shropshire and the Black Country as diocesan bishop for 19 years. He is very fondly remembered by many people and his legacy treasured."
Bishop Keith, who has three sons and a daughter, passed away at a care home in Surrey, after previously spending spells of his retirement in the West Country and on the Isle of Wight.
David Brown, who served as Lay Assistant to Bishop Keith from 1992 until 2003, said: "His ministry was shaped by a profound impulse to draw people into Christian faith, and to nurture those already on this path.
"He made this his priority despite the organisational demands of episcopacy that too easily stood in the way."
Rt.Revd Keith Sutton has died. May he rest in peace and rise in glory.https://t.co/eidt4aY4Ah— Arun Arora (@RevArun) March 24, 2017
Bishop Keith supported Archbishop Desmond Tutu in apartheid-era South Africa during the 1980s, after being sent as a special envoy by the Archbishop of Canterbury.
David Brown added: "Warm-hearted to all, he had an unusual ability to gain the confidence and trust of those he met.
"A fellow bishop once told me he was 'the saint within the House of Bishops'. He was a man 'of grace and truth.'"
Before coming to Lichfield, Bishop Keith was Bishop of Kingston from 1978 to 1984.
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