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Gregory elected archbishop of the West Indies

Tuesday, May 28, 2019

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Lord Bishop of Jamaica and the Cayman Islands Howard Gregory was yesterday afternoon elected the 13th archbishop, primate and metropolitan (Anglican) of the Church in the Province of the West Indies (CPWI).

He succeeds John Holder, who retired as archbishop in February 2018.

Gregory was elected by clergy and laity attending the 40th Synod of the CPWI at Cascadia Hotel in Port of Spain, Trinidad. He was one of two nominees put forward by the House of Bishops following its deliberations yesterday morning. The other candidate was Phillip Wright, bishop of Belize.

Following separate deliberations by the House of Clergy and the House of Laity, the entire body reconvened as an elective assembly and Gregory was elected on a simple majority.

The Province of the West Indies was established in 1883 and Archbishop-elect Gregory is the third bishop of Jamaica to be elected. The first was Enos Nuttall, bishop of Jamaica 1880-1916 — who was elected primate on May 26, 1893 and became the first archbishop when the title was changed in 1897.

William Hardie, bishop of Jamaica 1931-1949, was elected archbishop in 1945 and served until his resignation in 1949.

While Bishop Gregory is the first Jamaican-born diocesan bishop to be elected to this position, he is not the first Jamaican archbishop. Orland Lindsay, who worked in the Diocese of Jamaica before being elected bishop of Antigua in 1970, was elected archbishop in 1986 in succession to Archbishop Cuthbert Woodroffe of the Windward Islands, who was the first West Indian Archbishop. Archbishop Lindsay held the position until his retirement in 1998.

Archbishop Nuttall, while serving as bishop of Jamaica, played a leading role in drawing up the Constitution for a Provincial Synod which had its first meeting in Jamaica in October 1883 with the opening service being held at St Andrew Parish Church. At the time, the synod only involved the bishops of the province. It was not until the 1950s that the canons of the synod were amended to provide for the involvement of lay members in the deliberations and the first such synod was held in Trinidad in 1959.

The CPWI comprises eight dioceses, namely Barbados, Belize, Guyana, Jamaica & the Cayman Islands, Northeastern Caribbean and Aruba, The Bahamas and the Turks and Caicos Islands, Trinidad and Tobago, and the Windward Islands.

Gregory succeeded Alfred Reid as Lord Bishop of Jamaica and the Cayman Islands in 2012. He is presently supported by Robert Thompson, suffragan bishop of Kingston, and Leon Golding, suffragan bishop of Montego Bay.


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