Category : House of Deputies President

The President of the House of Deputies’ Responds to Bishop Love’s Letter

From there:

For more than 40 years, the Episcopal Church has prayed, studied and discerned and, in doing so, we have seen the evidence of God’s blessing in the lives of LGBT people. The Episcopal Church’s General Convention, our highest temporal authority, first acknowledged that God calls LGBT people to any ordained ministry in 2009. In 2012, the General Convention authorized a liturgical rite for the blessing of same sex unions, and in 2015, we authorized marriage equality in the church.

We recognize the Holy Spirit at work in the marriages of LGBTQ people and we know that there are Christians who have been drawn further into fidelity and service to the world by living in committed same-sex partnerships and marriages based on holy love and the gift of seeing Christ in one another. When we celebrate these marriages, the entire church is blessed by the love and fidelity of these faithful couples.

The Rev. Gay Clark Jennings
President, House of Deputies

Posted in Anthropology, Ethics / Moral Theology, General Convention, House of Deputies President, Marriage & Family, Pastoral Theology, Sexuality Debate (in Anglican Communion), TEC Bishops, Theology, Theology: Scripture

TEC Executive Council: opening remarks from House of Deputies president

The last time we met, just over three months ago, I said some things. I said some things about standing on the threshold and about longing for change and about embracing our elastic identity……
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“I’m feeling pretty elastic this triennium,” I said
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I want to thank you, Michael, for the wisdom and steadiness with which you guided us all through the recent primates meeting and its aftermath. While confusion reigned and rumors swirled, you helped us understand, to renew, that we are still full members of the Anglican Communion, that our mission relationships with Anglicans across the world are strong, and that what binds us together is far stronger than what threatens to separate us. I will take your spirit with me when I travel to Zambia in April as the Episcopal Church’s clergy representative to the Anglican Consultative Council, where you can be assured that I will participate fully with a glad heart, a strong spirit and pride that the Episcopal Church fully affirms the dignity and worth of all of God’s children, including our lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender sisters and brothers.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Anglican Primates, Episcopal Church (TEC), House of Deputies President, Primates Gathering in Canterbury January 2016

TEC Leaders Announce a Special Legislative Committee on Marriage for upcoming General Convention

We have also decided to name a (Special) Legislative Committee on Marriage for this General Convention to ensure that the work of the Task Force on Marriage and resolutions related to the rapidly shifting contexts of civil marriage in the United States and in several other parts of the world can be given appropriate consideration. This will also make it possible for the Prayer Book, Liturgy & Music legislative committee to give full consideration to the other business that will come before it.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, --Civil Unions & Partnerships, Anthropology, Episcopal Church (TEC), Ethics / Moral Theology, General Convention, House of Deputies President, Law & Legal Issues, Marriage & Family, Politics in General, Presiding Bishop, Religion & Culture, Sexuality, State Government, Theology, Theology: Scripture

House of Deputies president’s opening remarks at Executive Council

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Episcopal Church (TEC), Executive Council, House of Deputies President

The ENS Article on the Recent Meeting of the new TEC Diocese in South Carolina

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, * South Carolina, Episcopal Church (TEC), Ethics / Moral Theology, House of Deputies President, Law & Legal Issues, Parish Ministry, Pastoral Theology, Presiding Bishop, Stewardship, TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: South Carolina, Theology

President of the House of Deputies at Executive Council: Opening Remarks

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Episcopal Church (TEC), Executive Council, House of Deputies President

TEC House of Deputies President Gay Jennings writes on Law, Anglicanism and Africa

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, Africa, Episcopal Church (TEC), House of Deputies President, Law & Legal Issues, Nigeria, Religion & Culture, Uganda

(Living Church) Will TEC Committees Perish?

The Rev. Gay Jennings, who helped lead the charge for structural reform at the 77th General Convention and now serves as president of the House of Deputies, says this reform may lead to fewer church committees.

“This may be hard for some of us to accept, but I think that we are in the death throes of the current standing commission and committee structure,” Jennings told Executive Council June 7. “Both those who are on TREC [the Task Force for Reimagining the Episcopal Church] and those of us who aren’t need to begin imagining new ways of bringing together laypeople, clergy, and bishops to accomplish the work of General Convention.”

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Episcopal Church (TEC), General Convention, House of Deputies President

The TEC President of House of Deputies' Opening Remarks to Executive Council

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Episcopal Church (TEC), Executive Council, House of Deputies President

A.S. Haley on the Latest in the Ongoing South Carolina Episcopal Church Mess

…then a true confusion results: since the remnant group sees themselves as “the Episcopal Church in South Carolina”, and are indifferent to using the adjective “Protestant”, they could not distinguish themselves from a group which called itself “the Episcopal Diocese of South Carolina, also known as the Protestant Episcopal Church in the Diocese of South Carolina.” The former group sees the word “Protestant” as outdated, and superfluous to their identity, while the latter group sees the word as referring to the tradition they still uphold, and hence as still descriptive of their identity. Neither group rejects the adjective as part of their heritage.

The confusion appears to be intended, and not accidental. The “omission” of the single word “Diocese” from their official title turns out to have been a sham. An examination of the remnant group’s Website demonstrates that it has not really tried to comply with the TRO, even after the changes made to it on the surface. If one visits their website and chooses the browser option “View Page Source”, the following lines of code are right at the very top

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, - Anglican: Analysis, Episcopal Church (TEC), Ethics / Moral Theology, House of Deputies President, Law & Legal Issues, TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: South Carolina, Theology

House of Deputies President opening remarks to Executive Council

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Episcopal Church (TEC), Executive Council, House of Deputies President

The Rev. Gay Clark Jennings Elected President of House of Deputies

Her remarks in response follow: (ENS)

I am honored to have been chosen by my colleagues in the House of Deputies as their next president, and I’m grateful to all of the people across the church””deputies, bishops, and many other leaders””who have expressed their confidence in me and shared their ideas. I’m especially grateful to Deputy Martha Alexander and Deputy Frank Logue for offering their gifts to the church, and I look forward to working with them during the next triennium.

I am a priest, ordained in 1979, born and raised and ordained in the Diocese of Central New York, and an eight-time deputy from the Diocese of Ohio. I stood for election as president of the House of Deputies because I believe that God is calling me to work with leaders across the church to change the way we do business in the next triennium. For the Episcopal Church to matter in the 21st century, we have to find ways to move forward together.

As president of the House of Deputies, I intend to foster the leadership of young people, people of color, and others who have not always been at the table. I have strong relationships with many bishops, and I look forward to working with the House of Bishops for wholeness, reconciliation and justice that will benefit the entire Episcopal Church.

The Church longs to be transfigured ”“ changed into the likeness of Jesus ”“ from glory to glory. That’s my vision for the Episcopal Church, and I look forward to working with the House of Deputies, the House of Bishops, and Episcopalians across the church to make it come true.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, --Gen. Con. 2012, Episcopal Church (TEC), General Convention, House of Deputies President, Ministry of the Ordained, Parish Ministry

(ENS) House of Deputies President Bonnie Anderson preaches the July 6 sermon at GC 2012

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, --Gen. Con. 2012, Episcopal Church (TEC), General Convention, House of Deputies President

Alan Haley Analyzes the Opening Addresses of the PB and the HOD Pres. at Gen. Con. 2012

Right at the outset, we are given two completely disparate views on what we are there for: first, to take advantage of a nearby baseball game (to which, like the prodigal son’s banquet, we may always “arrive late”), and to undergo a “tune-up”, to “synchronize our heartbeat with God’s.” One doesn’t know whether one has wandered into a sports bar, or the doctor’s office.

From there on, the two ships which are passing in the night continue their respective courses, each oblivious to, and unaware of, the other as something to be reckoned with.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, - Anglican: Analysis, --Gen. Con. 2012, Episcopal Church (TEC), General Convention, House of Deputies President, Presiding Bishop

House of Deputies President Bonnie Anderson’s opening remarks for General Convention 2012

Independence from England meant a break with the authority of the Bishop of London. What’s more, many existing priests were loyal to England and new priests had to travel to England to be ordained. Ordained authority was hard to come by in the Episcopal Church in the United States, and the laity exercised significant leadership. Our first Presiding Bishop, William White, who like Thomas Jefferson was a student of John Locke, became a champion of shared governance by all orders ”” laypeople, clergy and bishops. His feast day happens to be July 17, after we’ve finished our business and gone home again, so be sure to remember him then.

So it seems auspicious to me that we are beginning this 77th General Convention ”” in which the structure of the Episcopal Church promises to be one of our principal concerns ”” that we are beginning on July 4. Just as we celebrate the distinctive democracy of the United States on Independence Day, we should celebrate the distinctive polity of the Episcopal Church that became part of our DNA because of the circumstances of the American Revolution in which our church was born.

But, as many of you may be thinking right now, celebrating July 4 isn’t that straightforward. You don’t have to scratch the surface of July 4 very hard to expose the horrors of colonialism that the United States inherited from Great Britain and continues to impose on so much of the world.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Episcopal Church (TEC), General Convention, House of Deputies President

An announcement from Bonnie Anderson, President of the Episcopal Church House of Deputies

I write to you for two reasons: to thank you for your support, friendship, prayers, challenges, brilliance and love that has inspired and humbled me during these 6 years and second, to let you know that I do not plan to stand for election as President of the House of Deputies for another term.

The reason I am not seeking re-election is a simple one: I want to spend more time with my family. My husband, Glen, is retired. I want to be with him more. Our amazing son, Justin, lives with us and reminds us every single day, by his very existence, that God is a generous miracle maker.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Episcopal Church (TEC), House of Deputies President

(ENS) House of Deputies President Bonnie Anderson’s opening remarks to Executive Council

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Episcopal Church (TEC), Executive Council, House of Deputies President

Bonnie Anderson Writes the House of Deputies about recent TEC Communications and Issues

Dear Deputies and First Alternates:

A confusing situation has arisen and I’d like to set the record straight:

On Thursday, the Presiding Bishop released a video directed to the House of Deputies expressing her opinion about legislative issues that will come before General Convention this summer. Yesterday, the Office of Communications sent an email to bishops that mischaracterized my response to the video’s release and asked the bishops to forward the video message to their diocese’s deputies.
On Thursday afternoon, I received word from the General Convention Office that the Presiding Bishop, via the Office of Communications, had directed that office to forward a video message from the Presiding Bishop to all deputies. I had neither seen the video nor been consulted about it and so I told the General Convention Office to hold it.

In my nearly 25 years as a deputy, I don’t ever recall the Presiding Bishop speaking directly to the House of Deputies outside of a joint session or without giving the House due notice, while at General Convention. I don’t ever recall a Presiding Bishop corresponding directly with deputies outside of the General Convention, without the knowledge of, or in collaboration with the President.

I was surprised because I thought that the Presiding Bishop, her staff, and I had worked through some important issues of internal communications last fall. I had talked with both Bishop Sauls and the Presiding Bishop and asked that we proceed in a more collegial and cooperative manner. I thought we had agreed to do so.

But while the General Convention Office was holding the video, it was released by the Office of Communications to the whole church just hours before the Presiding Bishop and I were scheduled to arrive in Baltimore where we could have resolved the situation in person.

I am glad to tell you that, while we have been in Baltimore, Bishop Katharine and I have shared a meal and talked in person. I told her that I’m disappointed about what’s happened in the last few days and asked that we proceed toward General Convention with collegiality and a cooperative spirit even””especially””when we disagree. I also told her that I am concerned about the use of churchwide resources to lobby General Convention on only one side of a legislative issue.

Despite this productive conversation, upon direction from the Presiding Bishop, the Office of Communications sent the second email, this time to bishops, that mischaracterized my request that the video be held, thus putting me in a difficult position and making it necessary to spell all of this out.

I am confident that we can get back on track and work productively and faithfully to prepare for General Convention. I will continue to urge that those of us who lead the church talk directly with one another to resolve differences. I will also continue to ask that the resources of the Church Center be deployed in ways that present the full range of opinions on legislation that will determine how the church meets the challenges before us.

Thank you for your commitment to our work. I am looking forward to being with all of you in Indianapolis and to the work that we will accomplish together.

Peace,

[Ms.] Bonnie Anderson, President, The House of Deputies

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Episcopal Church (TEC), House of Deputies President, Presiding Bishop

Bonnie Anderson’s closing remarks to The Episcopal Church's Executive Council

It’s not surprising that it’s hard for us to adapt our decision-making processes to create the change we need and to respond to change in the world around us. This is halting and imperfect work. The inertia that keeps us stuck in the old model””in the ethic of survival that Stringfellow cautions us against””is powerful. I feel its pull, and I imagine you do too.

But I think that when we talk about a “transitional” budget we’re dressing up that ethic of survival instead of mustering the courage we need to free ourselves of it. During the remainder of the budget process, I hope and pray that we can resist the inertia that will lull us into complacency, confront change bravely, and come up with a budget that we can consider at General Convention faithfully and in good conscience.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Episcopal Church (TEC), Executive Council, House of Deputies President

(ENS) TEC Executive Council adopts draft budget for next triennium

The budget, which will not be final until General Convention acts in July, proposes to set aside money for a “churchwide consultation” on the Episcopal Church’s future shape and work. It also includes money for pilot projects that Chief Operating Officer Stacy Sauls said could show how the church’s purchasing and organizational power could help congregations and dioceses free up more of their resources for mission work.

Sauls characterized such a cooperative arrangement as one way to bring about “long-term significant change” in how the churchwide staff relates to the rest of the church. Council accepted his proposal and his suggestion that the 2013-2015 budget “should open the door to doing long-term reform of how we do business as a church.”

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, Episcopal Church (TEC), Executive Council, House of Deputies President, Parish Ministry, Presiding Bishop, Stewardship

(ENS) Executive Council challenged to engage in adaptive change

Three Episcopal Church leaders challenged members of the church’s Executive Council Jan. 27 to engage in “adaptive change” in response to what they said are changing church and societal environments.

That challenge began immediately as the members received two different budget scenarios developed by council’s Executive Committee upon which to begin formulating a draft 2013-2015 budget. One scenario calls for asking dioceses to contribute 19 percent of their income and the other calls for dioceses contributing 15 percent. The larger income would be $103.6 million and the 15 percent-asking budget would be reduced by approximately $13.5 million, according to Treasurer Kurt Barnes.

In an emailed memo to Episcopal Church Center staff after the scenarios were presented to council, Chief Operating Officer Stacy Sauls noted that the 19-percent version plans on a $5.9 million decrease in income from the current triennium. The 15-percent version’s reduced revenue amounts to $19.3 million less than the current triennium.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, Episcopal Church (TEC), Executive Council, House of Deputies President, Parish Ministry, Presiding Bishop, Stewardship, TEC Bishops

(ENS) Executive Council submits GC resolution saying church is 'unable to adopt Anglican Covenant'

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Anglican Covenant, Episcopal Church (TEC), Executive Council, General Convention, House of Deputies President, Presiding Bishop

A Message from the Episcopal Church Executive Council

The first morning of Council brought three distinctive yet interwoven narratives from the Presiding Bishop, the President of the House of Deputies and the Chief Operating Officer. Each made important statements about how the work of Executive Council relates to the larger narratives of the life of the Church. There were moments of conflict as values held passionately by the three speakers were openly expressed. There were admonitions to find Jesus among the poor, to honor the hard work and witness of the whole people of the Church in all orders, to express how we carry out God’s mission in the shaping of a budget.

The experience of conflict in church meetings where budgetary discussions and vision are mixed together often make us wary of even trying to connect the dots, of weaving a whole story from the threads. Rich insights by committed leadership, accompanied by a common commitment to hear one another out, resulted in the beginnings of new stronger cloth.

In 2009, General Convention closed with a strong emphasis on mission, mission, mission. . . . God is calling the church to meet Jesus in the marginalized ”“ the poor, the lonely, the suffering, the lost. Weave, weave, weave . . . Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori in her opening remarks challenged Council to regard budgets as moral documents. The 76th General Convention’s adoption of the Five Marks of Mission of the Anglican Communion as mission priorities are the threads that are woven through all the parts of The Episcopal Church’s budget.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, Episcopal Church (TEC), Executive Council, House of Deputies President, Parish Ministry, Presiding Bishop, Stewardship

TEC Executive Council begins budgeting process for 2012 and beyond

Also in his remarks, [Bishop Stacy] Sauls spoke about how in September when he came to work at the Episcopal Church Center in New York he found a “demoralized staff” that was fearful, overly regulated, distrustful and that felt their creativity was stifled. He said he has begun to refer to the staff as “missionaries” in keeping with the church’s corporate identity as the Domestic and Foreign Missionary Society “because it suggests something about the reason for our being.”

“I want them grounded, not in a place, but in an endeavor and that endeavor is to participate in the mission of God and to lead others to participate in the mission of God,” he said.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, Episcopal Church (TEC), Executive Council, House of Deputies President, Parish Ministry, Presiding Bishop, Stewardship

(ENS) Episcopal Church chief operating officer announces staff appointments

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Episcopal Church (TEC), House of Deputies President, Presiding Bishop

(ENS) Conversations about changing the church occupy Executive Council

The discussions about change during this meeting have their roots in the council’s decision in October 2009 to reorganize and expand the number of its standing committees. The theme of structural change came to the fore again during the last two council meetings, beginning with remarks made by Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori at the October 2010 meeting as well as those by House of Deputies President Bonnie Anderson in February.

“We continue to work toward adaptive change rather than technical change,” Jefferts Schori told the council in her closing remarks June 17. Calling it a “significant shift” in the council’s attitude, she said “we have, to some degree, left the culture of fear and entered into a culture of the future.”

[Bonnie] Anderson said that “ever since we arrived [at the conference center], our energy and creative tension have been signaling to me that we’re on the cusp of breaking through to authentic, creative change.”

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Episcopal Church (TEC), House of Deputies President, Presiding Bishop

At Episcopal Church Exec. Council Meeting, Diocesan reconstruction efforts get members' attention

(ENS) During their opening remarks, both Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori and House of Deputies President Bonnie Anderson spoke about the calls for changes in the structure and governance of the church.

Jefferts Schori said she encounters many people who are “eager or at least willing to entertain those conversations.”

She said she sees “a really significant rise in readiness for mission and connections to the need and concerns of people beyond our immediate congregations,” adding that she sees that readiness “as a sign of enormous health ”¦ [and] renewed investment in the core work of the church.”
“People are not focused inward by large; they are focused outward which is where the church is supposed to be,” she said.

Anderson suggested that the church will not “find our way forward by debating questions whose answers are important primarily to people who live and breathe church governance — as lovely as we all are!” Instead, she said, “we need to devote our energy to enabling the church to realize the possibility of real change — courageous, life-giving and life-altering change — for Episcopalians, for seekers, and for the lost and hurting and hungry in our midst.”

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Episcopal Church (TEC), Executive Council, House of Deputies President, Presiding Bishop

(Living Church) John Tang Boyland–Money Is Powerless Before God

Jesus disarms and makes a spectacle of the power of money in the parable of the unjust steward (Luke 16:1-15). A steward accused of embezzlement is told to settle the accounts one last time. He uses the opportunity to “forgive” his master’s debtors and ingratiate himself with them, so he can seek help after his threatened dismissal. The Pharisees, who were lovers of money, ridiculed Jesus. He replied that what people prize can be an abomination in the sight of God.

Let the litigious bureaucracy have the money it wants. We keep the Gospel and proclaim it, in season and out of season. The money the Episcopal Church raises from coerced offerings, from Pyrrhic legal victories or from those who believe its new gospel will do no more to save it on its appointed day of judgment than the wealth of Herod’s temple protected it from Roman soldiers in A.D. 70. In the end, money is of no account, mere dust on the scales.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, Episcopal Church (TEC), Eschatology, Executive Council, General Convention, House of Deputies President, Law & Legal Issues, Parish Ministry, Presiding Bishop, Stewardship, TEC Conflicts, Theology

Rob Roy Contests Bonnie Anderson's Statistics in her recent lecture on the Episcopal Church

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Episcopal Church (TEC), House of Deputies President, TEC Data

Episcopal House of Deputies President Bonnie Anderson Kellogg Lecture 2011(II): Power and Leadership

Is the Episcopal Church any longer capable of significant change for the sake of reclaiming an authentic life as a church of Jesus Christ, as a church having “a name of being alive? To be a church alive, not an institution or organization primarily concerned about preserving itself, the notion of an empowered laity…..

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Episcopal Church (TEC), House of Deputies President