From Columbus: Presiding Bishop bids farewell to House of Bishops

June 21, 2006

Presiding Bishop Frank Griswold took the opportunity to share some farewell thoughts with the House of Bishops on June 21. The concluding legislative session for the Bishops was Griswold's last time to preside over the House.

Griswold thanked the bishops for the "careful way you have managed to move through the business of this convention."

He said that it had been a privilege to serve as Presiding Bishop for the last eight-and-a-half years, adding that "all kinds of things I never anticipated have become part of my life and yours."

One of the greatest gifts, he said, has been the opportunity to come to know the Anglican Communion.

"My own sense of what is the body of Christ has been immensely stretched," he said. He also said he knew that bishops brought to the meetings of the House not only their own perspectives, but that of their dioceses, as well.

Griswold thanked the House of Bishops chaplains, the Rev. Dr. Michael Battle and the Rev. Dr. Mark McIntosh; two members of his staff, the Rev. Canon Carl Gerdau and Assistant to the Presiding Bishop for Communications Barbara Braver, as well as the secretariat staff who have worked with him in each session of the house during General Convention.

"It has been a great privilege to share this ministry with you these years and may the Lord bless you all," he said to the House, all of whom stood to applaud.

Later, it was read into the minutes of the meeting, expressions of "deep gratitude to our Presiding Bishop for his guidance throughout 75th General Convention and his faithful service as chief pastor of the Episcopal Church." The bishops also expressed their thanks to Phoebe Griswold for her "ministry to all God's children around the world."