ECUSA Presiding Bishop Frank T. Griswold observes the laying of a cornerstone for a diocesan guesthouse during his visit to Nigeria.
Presiding Bishop Frank Griswold of the Episcopal Church of the U.S.A. visited Nigeria for nine days in mid-January, leading a retreat for Nigeria’s bishops – some of whom were not, at first, eager to receive him.
“I think there was some fear that I was coming with an agenda,” he said.
Nigerian Anglicans, most with strong evangelical roots, have been “formed by a different spirituality and sacramentality” than the Anglo-Catholic Bishop Griswold. But by the end of the retreat they regarded each other with “deep affection,” he said.
He said some of the bishops were surprised at his response to a question about women’s ordination.
“I told them that ‘you have your own cultural context and I would not presume to dictate'” to the Nigerian church about how to proceed on such issues, he said.
The retreat was held in Aghara-Otor. Bishop Griswold, his wife Phoebe, and four staff members toured the three provinces of the largest church body in the Anglican Communion.