The Diocese of Fort Worth’s standing committee has called the Rt. Rev. Rayford B. High, Jr., as the third provisional bishop of the diocese. The diocesan convention will vote Nov. 3 on the standing committee’s recommendation.
If elected then, High will succeed the Rt. Rev. C. Wallis Ohl, who has served as provisional bishop since November 2009. High served as one of two bishops suffragan in the Diocese of Texas from 2003 to 2011.
“I am deeply honored and humbled by the fact that the Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth would ask me to be their provisional bishop,” Bishop High said in a news release by the diocese. “I am thrilled and I am excited about it and I look forward to working with laity and clergy of the diocese. I’m really grateful for the laity of the church.”
High recalled the sense of welcome he experienced at Trinity Church, Fort Worth, as a freshman at Texas Christian University.
“I have a longer deeper connection with the diocese,” he said. “I did my first year of college at TCU and went to Trinity as a person who grew up in Diocese of Texas and they embraced me. Their chaplain looked after me, through Canterbury House. It was the beginning of a new spiritual level of growth for me.”
A native of Houston, Bishop High is an alumnus of the University of the South and what is now Episcopal Divinity School. He was an eight-time deputy to General Convention when elected as bishop suffragan. He oversaw 44 congregations in the northeast, northwest and southeast convocations of the Diocese of Texas, including Beaumont, Henderson, Jasper, Killeen, Liberty, Longview, Lufkin, Orange, Port Arthur, Port Neches Silsbee, Waco, and Woodville. He also oversaw the pastoral care of clergy and their families, and renewal and prison ministries.
High and his wife, Pat, have been married for 42 years and have three children and six grandchildren. They are building a home in Fort Worth and will move to Fort Worth in early 2013
“Pat and I are excited about being in Fort Worth, about moving there in January,” Bishop High said. “Pat goes with me on visitations — she’s part of the team.”