The Anglican Bishop in Jerusalem is the bishop of the Anglican diocese based at St. George's Cathedral, Jerusalem, which is a part of the Episcopal Church in Jerusalem and The Middle East.
The Episcopal Church in Jerusalem and the Middle East began as a number of missionary posts of the Church Mission Society
in Cyprus, the Middle East
and the Persian Gulf
. CMS continues to provide the province with lay mission partners and ordained chaplains, but now the majority of its ministry is grown from the local congregations. During the 1820s, CMS began to prepare for permanent missionary stations in the region. In 1833, such a post was established in Jerusalem
with the support of the London Jewish Society (a Jewish Christian missionary society). In 1839, the building of the Church of Saint Mark in Alexandria
was begun. In 1841, Michael Solomon Alexander
, a converted rabbi
, arrived in Jerusalem as bishop
. His diocese
originally covered the mission stations in the Middle East and Egypt, and was a joint venture with the Lutheran church
(the so-called Anglo-Prussian Union
), serving Lutherans and Anglicans. In 1845, Christ Church, Jaffa Gate, became the first Anglican church in Jerusalem. In 1881, the Anglo-Prussian Union lapsed, and it was formally ended in 1887. From that time, the diocese became solely Anglican. Saint George's Cathedral
was built in 1898 in Jerusalem as a central focus for the diocese.
Although the diocese began as a foreign missionary organisation, it quickly established itself as part of the Palestinian community. In 1905, the Palestinian Native Church Council was established to give Palestinians more say in the running of their church. This led to an increase in the number of Palestinian and 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. Bishop Gwynne established the second cathedral of All Saints' in Cairo
(the present cathedral is the third building) in 1938. In 1945, Sudan
became a separate diocese from Egypt (see Episcopal Church of the Sudan
for its history). 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 in 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 in Jerusalem. During the 1950s, political unrest in Egypt left the diocese in the care of four Egyptian clergy under the oversight of the Archbishop in Jerusalem. A new, British Bishop of Egypt was appointed in 1968, and, in 1974, the first Egyptian bishop, Ishaq Musaad
, was consecrated. In 1976, Faik Hadad became the first Palestinian Anglican Bishop in Jerusalem.
In 1976, the structure of the Anglican church in the region was overhauled. Jerusalem became an ordinary bishopric, and the four dioceses, as they still stand today, were united as equal partners in the Province of Jerusalem and the Middle East. The Archbishop of Canterbury relinquished his metropolitan authority to a Presiding Bishop and the Central Synod. The Diocese of Egypt was greatly expanded to take in the chaplaincies of Ethiopia, Somalia, Libya, Tunisia and Algeria. The Sudan became a fully separate and independent province. In 1970, the Cathedral of All Saints' in Cairo was demolished to make way for a new Nile bridge. In 1977, work on a new building on Zamalek was begun, and completed in 1988.
Today the bishop's church has around 2000 members. The current bishop is the Rt. Rev. Suheil Dawani, who was officially installed at St. George's Cathedral in Jerusalem on April 15, 2007.
- 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