The Episcopal Church enters the desert time

The former presiding bishop of The Episcopal Church, the Rt. Rev. Frank Griswold believes that our church may be entering the desert time.

Frank Griswold: Maybe this is the desert time

For the Episcopal Church and mainline Protestantism, this may be a wilderness period, a time of being shaped, formed and made ready to enter the promised land, says a former presiding bishop of the Episcopal Church.


The Episcopal Church and the Protestant mainline in America today may be going through a normal “paschal pattern” — a dying and a rising — that all churches go through, said Bishop Frank T. Griswold. And that is not necessarily a bad thing.

“There’s an arrogance and a self-confidence that is shattered by things falling apart,” said Griswold, former presiding bishop of the Episcopal Church. But beneath the church’s many challenges is an invitation to deeper wisdom, a hidden grace that leads to new insight, wisdom and resurrection.

“To use an image from the Old Testament, maybe this is the desert time,” Griswold said. “The desert was a period of purification and self-knowledge in order that they were prepared to enter the promised land.”

“If we are in fact the body of Christ, limbs of Christ’s risen body, we’re OK,” he said.

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