Photo Credit: Mary Frances Schjonberg / Episcopal News Service
[Episcopal News Service, by Lynette Wilson] The Presiding Bishop of the US-based Episcopal Church, Michael Curry, will lead a week-long Episcopal Relief & Development pilgrimage focused on reconciliation to Ghana from Friday (20 – 28 January), visiting cities and sites critical to understanding the trans-Atlantic slave trade and Episcopal Relief & Development partners and programs working to improve Ghanaians’ lives.
“At General Convention in 2015, we promised to address systemic, structural racism as a church. One of the first steps is learning the stories: how our church supported and prospered because of slavery and oppression, how black people have related to one another, how Ghanaian communities bear huge gifts and wisdom into the world today. That’s what this pilgrimage is all about,” said the Revd Stephanie Spellers, canon to the presiding bishop for evangelism, reconciliation and creation.
An estimated 12 to 25 million Africans passed through Ghana’s ports to be sold as slaves in the United States, Latin America and the Caribbean. Pilgrims will visit Cape Coast Castle, the W.E.B. DuBois Centre, Elmina Castle and Pikworo Slave Camp for a historical perspective on the slave trade.
They will also have an opportunity to meet Episcopal Relief & Development’s partners, including the Anglican Diocesan Development and Relief Organisation in the Anglican Diocese of Tamale, and to witness its asset-based community development work.
“Episcopal Relief & Development is honoured that the presiding bishop is leading this pilgrimage of brother and sister bishops along with current and former members of our board,” Rob Radtke, Episcopal Relief & Development’s president, said. “Our Ghanaian church partners and my colleagues look forward to sharing our asset-based community development work with the pilgrims in the northern part of the country, and later traveling to the Cape Coast to pray and reflect on the trans-Atlantic slave trade and the work of reconciliation required of all of us as followers of Jesus.”
- Click here to read Lynette Wilson’s full report for the Episcopal News Service.