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PERCIVAL GIBSON

Rt. Rev. Percival Williams Gibson
August 26, 1893- April 3, 1970

Born to William George Gibson and his wife Esther at Cavaliers, Waterworks, Cross Roads, St. Andrew.

Baptised St. Luke's Anglican Church, Cross Roads.

First school Mico Practising School.

Entered St. George's College 1907.

Attended the Jamaica Church Theological College (Later to named St. Peter's College)

In 1917 he gained his Bachelor of Divinity, the first person to do so by studying at St. Peter's College.

Percival Gibson was made deacon on December 21, 1917 at St. Luke's.

December 21, 1918 ordained priest at the Kingston Parish Church.

1919 appointed curate of St. George's Church. (1919-1947)

1922 awarded the Musgrave Gold Medal ( Jamaica highest cultural honour) for composing and producing the pageant entitled " The Church".

Founding of Kingston College 1925 (Headmaster 1925-1955)

In 1936 Kingston College was placed on the Schools Commission list of first grade schools and Rev. P.W. Gibson was awarded the King George and Queen Mary Silver Jubilee Medal for his work at Kingston College.

Consecrated Bishop Suffragan of Kingston on May, 1, 1947 in the Cathedral Church of St. Jago de la Vega, Spanish Town.

December 1955 elected Lord Bishop of Jamaica.

Awarded the Keys to the City of Kingston December 22, 1955.

On February 7th 1956 became the first Jamaican to be enthroned Diocesan Bishop.

An editorial in the Daily Gleaner, commenting
on Bishop Gibson’s retirement, says in part:

We think his retirement would cause widespread concern. Probably every thinking man in Jamaica has at some time or the other in violet disagreement with Bishop Gibson: but that is because he fills a need – a very special need of our time. There is in so many other leaders too much evasion of the real issues, too little willingness to speak out.
Gibson does not hesitate to form decided opinions and then express them. For some years he sat in Legislative Council, performing a public duly from which have shrunk. He has never shirked his duly, and fearlessness and conscientious performance of his task of witness have made him a moral force ….
We have always rebutted the political and social heresy (which we have sometimes and suspected Gibson of holding) that the Anglican Church in Jamaica is a “National” Church, a sort of establishment on the retired list but entitled to its former rank. Nonetheless, we feel that the resignation of Bishop Gibson its pre-eminently a national question. His tasks and achievements have been on the heroic scale. We still need such a man, not as a figurehead of symbol, but as a force.

- The Daily Gleaner, Sept. 2, 1966

For those today who are too young to remember Bishop Gibson, there is little better way to comprehend not only the love and respect with which this man was held, but also the gratitude of a nation, than to read some of these tributes at his funeral on Monday, April 6, 1970.

The Governor General, Sir Clifford Campbell:

Jamaica has lost one of her great sons with the passing of Bishop Gibson … As the founder of
Kingston College, and as Bishop of Jamaica, He dedicated his life to the educational and spiritual
advancement of our nation.
Many Jamaicans here and aboard sat at his feet and today are filling positions of renown.
Bishop Gibson was a friend to all and his sympathy for the poor was outstanding ...

The Prime Minister, The Rt. Hon. Hugh L. Shearer:

Jamaica has lost one of its great leader. Thousand of Jamaican will cherish his memory, primarily because of the tremendous influence he exerted in his capacity as founder and headmaster of Kingston College, during their student years. Many others, however, will remember him for his forthright expressions of the eternal truths and for the inspiration he provided and example he set as spiritual leader of the Anglican Church in
Jamaica.
We should look back at the greatness that was his life, and seek from the source of his convictions –
the Father of all life. His personal work is finished, but the purposes which motivated and influenced his
activities as Churchman, educator ,scholar, leader, and patriot are everlasting, and our greatest tribute to him would be to grasp these purposes and adopt them as our own.

The Leader of the Opposition, Mr. Michael Manley:

He was a great man. He distinguished himself as a dynamic leader in an era when Jamaicans started to
assert their right to lead in our country.
Dedicated to the cause of the spiritual and educational life of our people, he brought his full gifts of
learning and his strong character to play and made a great impact on our nation


 

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