The Rt. Rev. E. Ambrose Gumbs spent his childhood on the island of Anguilla, before it was discovered. He grew up in and entirely “country” atmosphere – no electricity or running water. It was very early in life that he discovered his spirituality in the Anglican church, as most of life on the Island centered around church events and functions.
He has sung in a choir all his life.
Bishop Gumbs left Anguilla as a teenager to come to St. Thomas in the US Virgin Islands. He attended St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church, and graduated from Charlotte Amalie High School to enter the US Navy, where he served four years and spent his service time in Scotland.
On returning from service, the Bishop attended the University of the Virgin Islands where he attained a degree in Social Sciences while maintaining his worship home of St. Andrews. He still sang in the choir.
Under Bishop Turner, Bishpo Gumbs discerned a call to ordained ministry and studied at Virginia Theological seminary on scholarship. He returned, was ordained a priest and served as curate at St. Andrew’s, then Priest in Charge, and finally Rector. It was from this Position that he was elected Bishop of the Diocese in 2005, the first locally elected bishop in the diocese’s history.
Bishop Gumbs is an avid gardener and reads up to seven books at a time, usually focusing on new trends in ministry and models for church work. He listens to classical music, which sometimes resonates throughout the diocesan offices when he’s hard at work.
The Bishop is married to Phillis, and has two daughters: Edlyn and Deanalyn.
He sees his priorities in the Diocese of the Virgin Islands as fostering unity among the churches to bring all people to God’s table for discussion, and to push churches to think about Outreach ministries to their communities in order to be an example to others and thereby drawing people into the church. He has a special passion for Music, Health, and Youth Ministry.
The Bishop’s birthday is May 3.