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Diocese of Jerusalem
Arms of Diocese of Jerusalem
Province Episcopal Church in Jerusalem and The Middle East
Bishop Bishop of Jerusalem
Cathedral St George's Cathedral, Jerusalem
Subdivisions
Congregations 29
Membership

The Anglican Bishop in Jerusalem is the bishop of the Anglican Diocese of Jerusalem, which is a part of the Episcopal Church in Jerusalem and The Middle East, and based at St. George's Cathedral, Jerusalem. The Diocese of Jerusalem covering Israel, Palestinian territories, Jordan, Syria and Lebanon. The diocese covers 7,000 Anglicans, with 35 service institutions, 29 parishes, 1500 employees, 200 hospital beds and 6,000 students.[1] Today the actual membership of the church is around 2,000.

The current, fourteenth Anglican Bishop in Jerusalem is Suheil Dawani. He was elected Coadjutor Bishop on June 15, 2005 and was officially installed as Bishop on April 15, 2007. He succeeded Riah Hanna Abu El-Assal, who retired on March 31, 2007 at the prescribed retirement age of 70 years.[2]

Contents

Origins

The Episcopal Church in Jerusalem and the Middle East began as a number of missionary posts of the Church Mission Society (CMS) in Cyprus, the Middle East and the Persian Gulf. The Church Mission Society continues to provide the province with lay mission partners and ordained chaplains, but now the majority of its ministry is drawn from local congregations.

During the 1820s, CMS began to prepare for permanent missionary stations in the region.

In 1833, a missionary station was established in Jerusalem with the support of the London Society for Promoting Christianity Amongst the Jews (a Jewish Christian missionary society now known as the Church's Ministry Among Jewish People or CMJ). In 1839, the building of the Church of Saint Mark, Alexandria was begun.

In 1841, Michael Solomon Alexander, a converted rabbi, arrived in Jerusalem as the first Anglican Bishop in Jerusalem. His diocese originally covered the mission stations in the Middle East and Egypt, and was a joint effort with the united Evangelical Church in Prussia (the so-called Anglo-Prussian Union) for Anglicans and united Calvinists and Lutherans - see Anglican-German Bishopric in Jerusalem.

In 1849, Christ Church, Jerusalem near Jaffa Gate became the first Anglican/Lutheran church in the city. [3]

The Anglo-Prussian Union ceased to function in 1881, and no bishop was appointed between 1881 and 1887. From 1887, the missionary effort continued solely under Anglican auspices.

Saint George's Cathedral was built in 1898 in Jerusalem as a central focus for the diocese.

Later history

Although the diocese began as a foreign missionary organisation, it quickly established itself as part of the Palestinian community. In 1905, the Palestine Native Church Council [4] was established to give locals Arabs more say in the running of the church. This led to an increase in the number of Arab clergy serving the diocese.

In 1920, the Diocese of Egypt and the Sudan was formed, separate from the Diocese of Jerusalem, with Llewelyn Gwynne as its first bishop. In the 1920s the Anglican Bishop in Jerusalem founded St. George's College as a training seminary for local clergy.

In 1957, the Diocese of Jerusalem was elevated to the rank of an archdiocese (its bishop being an archbishop) under the authority of the Archbishop of Canterbury. The Archbishop of Jerusalem had metropolitan oversight of the entire area of the current province with the addition of the Sudan (five dioceses in all). In that same year, Najib Cubain was consecrated Bishop of Jordan, Lebanon and Syria, the first Arab Bishop, assistant to the Archbishop of Jerusalem. During the 1950s, political unrest in Egypt left the diocese in the care of four Egyptian clergy under the oversight of the Archbishop of Jerusalem.

Current position

In 1976, the structure of the Anglican church in the region was overhauled, with the Diocese of Jerusalem becoming an ordinary bishopric, and one of four dioceses forming the Province of the Episcopal Church in Jerusalem and the Middle East.

The Archbishop of Canterbury does not have metropolitan authority over the diocese, which is now held by a rotating Presiding Bishop and the Central Synod, comprising the four dioceses. When a Bishop reaches the age of 68, a coadjutor Bishop is required to be elected to work alongside the Bishop for two years.[1]

Also in 1976, Faik Haddad became the first Palestinian Anglican Bishop in Jerusalem.

Today, the Anglican church has around 2000 members. The current Anglican Bishop in Jerusalem is Suheil Salman Ibrahim Dawani, who was officially installed at St. George's Cathedral in Jerusalem on April 15, 2007.

List of Anglican Bishops in Jerusalem

  1. Michael Solomon Alexander - 1841 – 1845. Under joint auspices of the Anglican Church of England and the united Evangelical Church in Prussia. Christ Church, Jerusalem dedicated in 1849.
  2. Samuel Gobat - 1846 – 1879. Under joint Anglican and Evangelical auspices. He opened 42 schools and ordained the first two Palestinian priests
  3. Joseph Barclay - 1879 – 1881. Under joint Anglican and Evangelical auspices.
    Vacant 1881 - 1887
  4. George Francis Popham Blyth - 1887 – 1914. Under sole Anglican auspices; established the Palestine Native Church Council in 1905[5]
  5. Rennie MacInnes - 1914 – 1931
  6. George Francis Graham Brown - 1932 – 1942
  7. Weston Henry Stewart - 1943 – 1957
  8. Campbell MacInnes (Archbishop) - 1957 – 1969
  9. George Appleton (Archbishop) - 1969 – 1974
  10. Robert Stopford served as Vicar General - 1974 – 1976
  11. Faik Ibrahim Haddad - 1976 – 1984, the first Palestinian Arab Bishop
  12. Samir Hanna Kafity - 1984 – 1998, the second Palestinian Arab Bishop. He served two five-year terms as the Provincial President-Bishop and Primate.
  13. Riah Hanna Abu El-Assal - 1998 – 2007
  14. Suheil Salman Ibrahim Dawani - since 2007

See also

References

  1. ^ a b Suheil Dawani: The new Anglican Bishop of Jerusalem
  2. ^ image shows Bishop Riah: Former Anglican Bishop in Jerusalem, Riah Hanna Abu El-Assal, in 2006
  3. ^ http://www.cmj-israel.org/CMJMinistries/ChristChurch/Overview/tabid/70/Default.aspx
  4. ^ A History of Modern Palestine, One Land Two People, by Ilan Pappé, p 47. [1]
  5. ^ History of Anglican Church

Further reading

  • Encyclopedia of Christianity, Volume 2 (2001). Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing. ISBN 90-04-11695-8
  • Hoppe, Leslie J. (1999). A Guide to the Lands of the Bible. Liturgical Press. ISBN 0-8146-5886-5

External links

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