Category : TEC Diocesan Conventions/Diocesan Councils

(Tennessean) Task force to study Episcopal diocese of Tennessee's same-sex marriage ban

Instead of appealing to the national Episcopal church or the bishop to lift his own ban on priests officiating same-sex marriages, lay and clergy members of the Episcopal Diocese of Tennessee sent the matter to a task force for further study.

More than two-thirds of the delegates at the diocese’s Annual Convention on Saturday supported a resolution that directs the diocese’s lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender task force to assess how Bishop John Bauerschmidt’s marriage restrictions affect congregations and clergy in Middle Tennessee.

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I will take comments on this submitted by email only to KSHarmon[at]mindspring[dot]com.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, --Civil Unions & Partnerships, Anthropology, Episcopal Church (TEC), Ethics / Moral Theology, Marriage & Family, Pastoral Theology, Sexuality, TEC Bishops, TEC Diocesan Conventions/Diocesan Councils, Theology, Theology: Scripture

An Interesting Look back to 2007–Timothy B. Safford: William White in a Time of Turmoil

One factor in our current turmoil in The Episcopal Church and the larger Anglican Communion is the power and authority of bishops. One way to read the primates’ communiqué is as a rejection of the polity of The Episcopal Church that limits the power of bishops to make policy for the larger church. William White never proposed a distinct House of Bishops separate from the House of Deputies. For him, the clergy and laity meeting together, with their bishops, was adequate, as is still the case in diocesan conventions.

Born and educated in the democratic cauldron of Philadelphia, White did not object to the role of bishops elsewhere, but believed the new American church had an opportunity to return to its primitive roots when, before Constantine, the laity participated in the selection of their bishop, and before 1066, when the power of a bishop was not an extension of the power of the state. For the New England states, White’s new democratic Catholicism went too far. The clergy of Connecticut so objected to White’s proposal to have the first duly elected bishop of the United States consecrated by presbyters, temporarily, until proper Episcopal orders could be attained, they chose (without the vote of the laity) Samuel Seabury as bishop. He sailed for Canterbury, where he would not be consecrated, and then moved on to the non-juror bishops of Scotland.

Seabury believed that apostolic bishops, not a democratic process shared by clergy and laity, should determine the governance and worship of the emergent Episcopal Church. But for William White, who knew how difficult it would be to unify an Episcopal Church out of its very diverse parts, a method of choosing bishops was needed before the choosing could happen. For White, to do otherwise would be like electing George Washington the president, and then having him write the Constitution.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Ecclesiology, Episcopal Church (TEC), TEC Bishops, TEC Diocesan Conventions/Diocesan Councils, TEC Parishes, TEC Polity & Canons, Theology

Episcopal Diocese of Dallas Elects George Sumner as their Next Bishop

The Rev. Canon George Sumner was chosen bishop-elect of the Episcopal Diocese of Dallas after 77 votes from clergy and 107 votes from laity on the fourth ballot during a Special Convention on May 16, 2015 held at the Episcopal School of Dallas.

Sumner, age 60, is currently the Principal of Wycliffe College in Toronto, Canada, and was one of four nominees on the ballot for the diocese’ 7th bishop.

“I am humbled and grateful to God for my election,” Sumner said. “It will be a great privilege to share in the ministry Christ has given us all together in the Diocese of Dallas. I would like to express my appreciation for my fellow candidates and the remarkable transition team. I ask for your prayers and help in the days to come.”

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * International News & Commentary, Canada, Episcopal Church (TEC), Seminary / Theological Education, TEC Bishops, TEC Diocesan Conventions/Diocesan Councils, Theology

The Rev. Canon Audrey Cady Scanlan Elected as TEC Bishop of Central Pennsylvania

The Rev. Canon Audrey Cady Scanlan was elected on March 14 as 11th Bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Central Pennsylvania, pending the required consents from a majority of bishops with jurisdiction and standing committees of the Episcopal Church.

Scanlan, 56, Canon for Mission Collaboration and Congregational Life in the Diocese of Connecticut, was elected on the 2nd ballot out of a field of 3 nominees. She received 79 votes of 147 cast in the lay order and 50 of 79 cast in the clergy order. An election on that ballot required 74 in the lay order and 40 in the clergy order.

The election was held during the diocese’s Electing Convention for the 11th Bishop of Central Pennsylvania held at St. Stephen’s Cathedral in Harrisburg, Pa.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Episcopal Church (TEC), TEC Bishops, TEC Diocesan Conventions/Diocesan Councils

TEC Southeast Florida diocese elects Peter Eaton, a Colorado Dean, as its bishop coadjutor

The Very Rev. Peter Eaton, dean of St. John’s Cathedral in Denver, Colorado, was elected as bishop coadjutor of the Episcopal Diocese of Southeast Florida on Jan. 31, pending the required consents from a majority of bishops with jurisdiction and standing committees of The Episcopal Church.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Episcopal Church (TEC), TEC Bishops, TEC Diocesan Conventions/Diocesan Councils

(Detroit Free Press) Episcopal Church in Michigan passes gun resolution

The Episcopal Church in Michigan has passed a controversial resolution calling for stiffer gun control, drawing sharp criticism from conservative members who say it violates the right to bear arms.

The dispute is part of a larger debate among Episcopalians and other mainline Protestants about the future of their churches as they face sharp declines in membership.

Some conservatives say the gun resolution is the latest example of the Episcopal Church focusing on promoting liberal social issues such as gun control and same-sex marriage instead of the gospel, alienating congregants. But liberals say that their views are in line with the teachings of Christianity.

By a clear majority, members of the Episcopal Diocese of Michigan ”” which consists of southeast Michigan and the Lansing and Jackson areas ”” voted recently to approve a resolution calling for universal background checks on all gun purchases, banning all sales of semiautomatic weapons, high-impact ammunition, high-capacity ammunition magazines, and making gun trafficking a federal crime.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, Episcopal Church (TEC), Ethics / Moral Theology, Law & Legal Issues, Politics in General, State Government, TEC Bishops, TEC Diocesan Conventions/Diocesan Councils, Theology, Violence

TEC Diocese of Connecticut Resolution #12: To Promote the Use of Gender Neutral Titles for Priests

…AND BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that, while context, culture, and class are critically important dimensions of ministry, and that while there is not yet a consensus on the use of a common gender neutral title for priests, to advance the goal of developing and using such titles, it is a necessary first to eliminate any gendered titles for priests still in use in parishes, such as “Father” and “Mother,” while encouraging congregational conversations about thepreferred use of gender neutral titles;

AND BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that in all parishes in the Episcopal Church in Connecticut, we commit to ending the use of gendered titles for priests no later than the 231st Convention of the Episcopal Diocese of Connecticut;

AND BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that parishes in which female and male priests serve together shall begin using a specific common gender neutral title, according to the shared preference of the clergy in that parish;

AND BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that parishes in which title changes are to occur begin, as soon as is practicable, to engage in congregational education and discussion about the reasons for, and the benefits of this change…

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, Anthropology, Episcopal Church (TEC), Ministry of the Ordained, Parish Ministry, TEC Bishops, TEC Diocesan Conventions/Diocesan Councils, Theology

Episcopal Diocese of Western Louisiana Convention is held in Monroe

The 35th annual convention of the Episcopal Diocese of Western Louisiana continue Saturday with the central theme of how God calls his followers to be “fishers of people” in a mission-oriented church.

More than 300 members of the Episcopal Church from 41 parishes in Louisiana are expected to attend the event, which began Friday. Originally planned for Grace Episcopal Church and School, the convention was moved to Bayou DeSiard Country Club because of Monday’s tornado. Grace is located in the hardest-hit Garden District.

“It is a gathering where we seek to sharpen our understanding of and commitment to God’s mission, and a time to strengthen the bonds of affection among us,” said the Rt. Rev. Jake Owensby, Ph.D., D.D., who as bishop of the diocese is presiding over the meetings.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Episcopal Church (TEC), TEC Bishops, TEC Diocesan Conventions/Diocesan Councils

Executive Council discusses Diocesan Contributions to National Church Budget

The liveliest discussion during the opening session of the Episcopal Church’s Executive Council June 10-12 meeting here surrounded how much money the General Convention ought to ask dioceses to contribute to the church-wide budget ”“ and what should be done about dioceses that do not pay the full amount.

The discussion took the form of an informal poll of council members by Diocese of Ohio Bishop Mark Hollingsworth, chair of council’s Joint Standing Committee on Finances for Mission. FFM, as the committee is known, is in the process of helping to shape the draft 2016-2019 budget that council must construct by February 2015. Hollingsworth gave each council member 30 seconds to share what they are hearing around the church about the budget-funding process, and what they think ought to be done.

In the 2013-2015 triennium, dioceses are asked to contribute 19 percent of their annual income to help fund the church-wide budget. Each year’s annual giving in the three-year budget is based on a diocese’s income two years earlier, minus $120,000.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, Ecclesiology, Episcopal Church (TEC), Ethics / Moral Theology, Executive Council, Parish Ministry, Stewardship, TEC Diocesan Conventions/Diocesan Councils, Theology

TEC Diocese of Central Pennsylvania announces Bishop Search process

You can find the webpage there, and the diocesan profile (15 page pdf) here. Of special interest is the Diocesan fast facts page:

Diocesan Baptized membership: 12,645; in 1998, this number was 16,852
Average Sunday attendance: 4,328
Parishes: 66
With clergy full time: 26
With clergy part-time: 30
With supply clergy: 10
Clergy:
Priests: 83 (including parochial, non-parochial, retired, and licensed but not canonically resident)
Deacons: 28 canonically resident, with 17 active
Parish staffing statistics
Fifteen of our parishes share clergy. In 2014, six of our parishes will move from full time clergy to
part-time. About half of our parishes have half-time or quarter-time clergy.
Christian Formation in our parishes
“I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will guide you with my eye upon you.”
Psalm 32:8
Thirty-seven of our parishes offer church school.Twenty-three of our parishes have a mid-week
Eucharist.
Twelve of our parishes reported persons under the age of 16 being confirmed.
In 1998, 52 of our parishes reported having some form of Adult Education; in 2013, 34 did.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, Episcopal Church (TEC), Parish Ministry, TEC Bishops, TEC Data, TEC Diocesan Conventions/Diocesan Councils

(Honolulu Star Advertiser) Episcopal Church in Hawaii affirms support for same-sex Marriage

The Episcopal Diocese of Hawai”˜i on Saturday voted to encourage the state Legislature to pass marriage equality, the largest denomination to announce its support of an issue that has divided people of faith.

A resolution was approved by acclamation of the 180 Episcopalians who attended the diocese’s annual convention at the Cathedral of St. Andrew, including 44 clergy. The diocese has 40 worshipping sites and about 9,000 parishioners statewide.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, --Civil Unions & Partnerships, Anthropology, Episcopal Church (TEC), Ethics / Moral Theology, Law & Legal Issues, Marriage & Family, Politics in General, Religion & Culture, Same-sex blessings, Sexuality, Sexuality Debate (in Anglican Communion), State Government, TEC Diocesan Conventions/Diocesan Councils, Theology

Matthew Gunter Elected as the Eighth Bishop of the TEC Diocese of Fond du Lac

Gunter, rector of St. Barnabas Episcopal Church in Glen Ellyn, Illinois, was elected on the 2nd ballot out of a field of three candidates. To be elected, a candidate must have received a majority of the votes in both the lay order and the clergy order. On the second ballot, he received 73 of 99 votes cast in the lay order (50 required) and 43 of 69 votes cast in the clergy order (35 required).

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Episcopal Church (TEC), TEC Bishops, TEC Diocesan Conventions/Diocesan Councils

West Virginia Episcopal Diocese to allow for the blessing of same-sex couples

The Episcopal Church in West Virginia will bless same sex unions, Bishop Michie Klusmeyer announced Saturday.

Klusmeyer said he gave the issue much thought and prayer before making the decision, which he announced in Flatwoods at a three-day convention of the Diocese of West Virginia.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, --Civil Unions & Partnerships, Anthropology, Episcopal Church (TEC), Ethics / Moral Theology, Marriage & Family, Religion & Culture, Same-sex blessings, Sexuality, Sexuality Debate (in Anglican Communion), TEC Bishops, TEC Diocesan Conventions/Diocesan Councils, Theology, Theology: Scripture

A Times-Union article on a Proposed procedural Change in Episcopal Elections in TEC's Albany Diocese

The conservative Albany Episcopal Diocese is poised to change the way it elects its bishop in a move that is opposed by liberals.

How the bishop is chosen has become a debate about democracy locally in a mainline denomination known for making its decisions democratically.

A proposed rule change would eliminate a special Profile and Search Committee that seeks candidates in the diocese and from the national church and conducts a vetting process. Instead, the diocese’s Standing Committee, which advises the bishop, would administer the process relying on nominations from within the diocese.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Episcopal Church (TEC), Ethics / Moral Theology, TEC Bishops, TEC Diocesan Conventions/Diocesan Councils, TEC Polity & Canons, Theology

Episcopal Diocese of Western Michigan elects its 9th bishop

The Rev. Whayne Hougland, Jr., was elected at a special electing convention May 18 to be the ninth bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Western Michigan.

Hougland, currently rector of St. Luke’s Episcopal Church in Salisbury, N.C., was elected on the eighth ballot out of a field of four candidates. To be elected, a candidate must have received a majority of the votes in both the lay order and the clergy order. He received 87 of 139 votes cast in the lay order and 34 of 65 votes cast in the clergy order.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Episcopal Church (TEC), TEC Bishops, TEC Diocesan Conventions/Diocesan Councils