The first openly gay Episcopal bishop said he will retire in 2013, due in part to the “constant strain” on him and his family from the worldwide backlash against his election seven years ago.
Bishop V Gene Robinson, whose consecration convulsed the global Anglican fellowship, said he was announcing his retirement early so the transition would be smooth for the Diocese of New Hampshire.
He assured congregants that he is healthy and sober after seeking treatment for alcoholism five years ago.
He will be 65 when he steps down.
Mr Robinson revealed his plans at the annual diocesan convention in Concord.
The Episcopal Church is the US body in the 77 million-member Anglican Communion, a group of churches that trace their roots to the missionary work of the Church of England.