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CUBA: Metropolitan Council appoints bishop coadjutor for Cuba

[Episcopal News Service] Anglican Church of Canada Archbishop Fred J. Hiltz announced Jan. 22 that the Metropolitan Council of Cuba, which he chairs, has appointed the Rev. Griselda Delgado Del Carpio as bishop coadjutor of the Episcopal Church of Cuba.

Currently the rector of Santa Maria Virger in Itabo, Cuba, Delgado will be ordained and consecrated on Feb. 7 at the closing service for Cuba's synod meeting at Holy Trinity Cathedral in Havana, Hiltz said in a letter to the Cuban church.

Delgado will work with Bishop Miguel Tamayo of the Anglican Church of Uruguay as he completes his work as Cuba's interim bishop, Hiltz said, and a date will be set for her installation as diocesan bishop. Tamayo has served as interim bishop of Cuba for six years and plans to retire.

In making its choice, the council had asked for written responses from a number of candidates about their understanding of episcopal ministry, the challenges and opportunities facing the church in Cuba, and how they would embrace them through their leadership.

"A deep love for the Church in Cuba was evident in all of them," Hiltz said.

Delgado "has a lot of insight into the history of the church's witness in Cuban society," Hiltz said, predicting that she "will lead the church in the spirit of compassionate and courageous discipleship."

"She is committed to the ministry of all the baptized and to the principles of diverse and dispersed leadership," Hiltz wrote. "She is well aware of the need to give attention to stewardship of financial resources for maintaining ministry and mission. She recognizes the necessity for strategic planning including both short and long-term goals."

The announcement came five months after Cuba failed for the second time to elect a bishop coadjutor. After 13 inconclusive ballots were cast in September, the choice of a coadjutor fell to the council.

The Cuban church has not elected its own bishop for more than 20 years because of internal divisions within the diocese, the Anglican Journal reported in June.

The council, which governs the Cuban church in matters of faith and order, is made up of the primate of the Anglican Church of Canada, the archbishop of the Province of the West Indies, and the Presiding Bishop of the U.S.-based Episcopal Church. The council has overseen the church in Cuba since it separated from the Episcopal Church in 1967.

The Cuban church, with about 40 congregations and some 10,000 Episcopalians, is also served by two bishops suffragan, Nerva Cot Aguilera and Ulises Aguero Prendes, who were selected by the Metropolitan Council in February 2007 and consecrated in June the same year.

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