ARCHBISHOP EMMANUEL EGBUNU of Lokoja, Nigeria paid a surprise visit to Christâ€™s College, Guildford on Friday 7th February.
The Archbishop was at Lambeth Palace this week for the Europe Crown Nominations Commission (CNC) and used his spare day to visit the Diocese of Guildford.
Following lunch at the Cathedral, Archbishop Emmanuel toured Christâ€™s College with Principal Stephen Green and Diocesan Director of Education, Derek Holbird.
Archbishop Emmanuel said: â€œThe sense of commitment shown in revitalising Christâ€™s College is an inspiration to our people. There is a clear value placed on education and the investment in facilities is impressive, allowing the children to reach their full potential.
â€œI think one of the greatest lessons we can offer from the Good Shepherd Academy in Nigeria is how to achieve much with very little. Our children embrace their education as a gift and there is a strong community spirit.
Following the Nigeria Civil War ending in 1970, the role of the Church diminished in schools as many became state-owned. This is slowly beginning to change.
Archbishop Emmanuel continued: â€œWe take hope from the transformation of Christâ€™s College. In Nigeria, we are slowly reclaiming some of the schools back from the Government following state ownership of many of the schools in the 1970s.
â€œIt is one of the biggest challenges for the Church here. We are slowly starting new schools all over the country. Quality education builds character; we want to give hope to the next generation.â€
Archbishop Emmanuel will return home on Saturday 8th but hopes to return to the diocese as part of his visit in March for the second Europe CNC meeting.