The Dean of Bexley Hall Episcopal Seminary, Columbus, Ohio visited the Diocese of Seychelles, Province of the Indian Ocean, to confer the degree of Doctor of Divinty, honoris causa, on the bishop, the Right Revd Santosh K. Marray, at a Sung Evensong in the Cathedral Church of St. Paul, on Friday August 29th.
In attendance in the crowded cathedral were Vice President Joseph Belmont of the Seychelles, retired Anglican Bishop French Chang-Him, Roman Catholic bishop Denis Wiehe, and British High Commissioner Fergus Cochrane-Dyet, amongst other dignitaries.
The bishop was honoured for his extensive, devoted, committed and spiritual leadership to the church. Bishop Marray is a native of Guyana and has served the Diocese of Guyana, Diocese of the Bahamas and Turks and Caicos Islands and Episcopal Diocese of Florida. He has been the Bishop of Seychelles since 2005.
Dean Kevern, speaking on behalf of the Board of Trustees of Bexley Hall, commended Bishop Marray for his outstanding work in church growth and pastoral ministry, plus commitment to life – long learning. Citing the beloved motto of the first bishop of Ohio, Philander Chase, “Jehovah Jireh” (the Lord will provide), Dean Kevern observed that Bishop Marray has made this motto his own and has never been deterred by paucity of resources or difficult situations.
Bishop Marray interprets his vocation in missionary terms as one called by God to preach the gospel and offer servant leadership in his church wherever the Lord sends. He is not afraid to take risks for the faith. He was instrumental for the revival and revisioning many congregations and witnessed the power of the Holy Spirit’s transformation in struggling congregations in every area of ministry.
He was elected Bishop of Seychelles at a time when the diocese was undergoing sever challenges in mission and ministry and whose financial position was very delicate. In the three years of his episcopate the diocese has witnessed a major transformation in all areas of diocesan life and to this he gives God the glory. He is a firm believer that a risen Saviour and a dying church are incompatible; that through total and unconditional faith in the Lord, deep prayer life and hard work with unswerving commitment to mission, we will find a ‘pearl’ to work from that could be life giving.
He says that in his 27 years in fulltime ministry in three provinces across the Anglican Communion having served in over twenty congregations, he was never sent to striving churches, yet by the time he was called to another mission field the congregations were in healthy state. Bishop Marray says his life belongs to Jesus and he is called to serve his will where ever the Lord chooses. We are called to blossom where ever we are planted.
Bishop Marray is a graduate of Codrington Theological College, Barbados, with Diploma in Pastoral Studies, the University of the West Indies with Bachelor of Arts Degree in Theology. Bishop Marray studied for the Master of Laws in Canon Law, University of Wales Centre for Law and Religion in Cardiff, Wales, United Kingdom, and Doctor in Ministry in Theology from Colgate Rochester Divinity School/Bexley Hall Episcopal Seminary, Rochester, New York. He has done studies in Christian Spirituality with General Theological Seminary Centre for Christian Spirituality in New York.
Bishop Marray was appointed by the Archbishop of Canterbury as a member of the Anglican Covenant Design Group in December 2006.
When ask how he feels about the honour his response was that this was truly a humbling experience. However, he proceeded to note, that this honour belongs to the diocese and the nation of Seychelles because hadn’t they elected him and welcome his
presence in the diocese and country this recognition may have never taken place. He further went on to quote one of his guiding biblical texts from the Lord in St. Luke 17: 10, “So you also when you have done all that you were ordered to do say, ‘We are worthless slaves; we have done only what we ought to have done”
Item from: Anglican Diocese of Seychelles