HOB affirms bishops of continuing dioceses in unanimous roll call vote

ENS reports on the House of Bishops’ Mind of the House resolution passed unanimously today in a roll call vote, as well as providing information on topics related to the resolution. Bishop Wallis Ohl is quoted in the story. Significantly, the resolution names each of the bishops of the continuing dioceses, making it clear who The Episcopal Church considers the bishop of each diocese.


The House of Bishops Recognizes and Commends the Leadership of the Diocese of Fort Worth and Other Reorganizing Dioceses

The House of Bishops today (July 8, 2012) passed a Mind of the House Resolution unanimously by roll call vote.

A Mind of the House Resolution:

Resolved, That Episcopalians in the Dioceses of Fort Worth, Pittsburgh, Quincy and San Joaquin – lay and clergy – be commended for their unflagging efforts to continue to witness to God’s mission as The Episcopal Church during recent difficult times as they reorganize their continuing dioceses in that same spirit; and be it further

Resolved, that the leadership in each of those four continuing dioceses be commended for their similar efforts, including in particular the Rt. Rev. C. Wallis Ohl, Provisional Bishop of the Diocese of Fort Worth, the Rt. Rev. Kenneth L. Price, Assisting Bishop of the Diocese of Pittsburgh, the Rt. Rev. John Buchanan, Provisional Bishop of the Diocese of Quincy; and the Rt. Rev. Chester L. Talton, Provisional Bishop of the Diocese of San Joaquin, and especially the strong lay leadership of each diocese.”

Read the followup story from the Episcopal News Service.

Bishops Ohl & Buchanan seek affirmation of church’s “hierarchical character”

From the Episcopal News Service, by Mary Frances Schjohberg

Episcopal Church Diocese of Quincy Provisional Bishop John Buchanan and Fort Worth Provisional Bishop Wallis Ohl want the House of Bishops to “set the record on the polity of this church regarding its hierarchical character.”

Read the ENS report about the bishops’ request.


A countervailing voice

This is a thoughtful response to the prevailing sentiment expressed at the hearings at the Committee on Structure about restructuring the church. At the hearing almost everyone who spoke called for a special convention or a special commission to consider restructuring the church around proposals that call for shrinking the House of  Deputies and making General Convention smaller.

Thomas Jackson offers another view, one hardly heard at the hearing:

Please feel free to offer comments to this or any other post.

The first legislative day

Ladies and gentlemen, start your engines!

We are in Indianapolis, after all, and yesterday, Secretary Gregory Straub celebrated that fact with one of his more, hmmmm, striking sports coats.

Today the House of Deputies organized itself and opened for business. On this, our first legislative day, we met for an hour in the morning to elect a vice president — The Very Rev. Scott Kirby of Eau Claire — and other officers necessary for the running of a meeting the size of the House of Deputies. We then notified the House of Bishops that we had done so, and they did the same to us.

We then adjourned for worship, which meant 800 deputies, nearly 100 bishops, ECW delegates and God only knows how many alternates, volunteers, spouses, and guests began moving from the Convention to the third floor of the JW Marriott (the hotel where the Fort Worth deputation is staying). It was a tsunami of Episcopalians flowing across the skybridges and up the escalators in such numbers that alarms began going off on the moving stairs.

The worship space is a large hotel ballroom, with all that implies about bland decor, but the Indianapolis diocesan altar guild had tried try to turn it into sacred space.

But it was the music and the comforting familiar words of worship that did their usual job of  bringing this already-tired, somewhat heat-frazzled mass of Episcopalians into the quiet calm place where holiness lives.

The sound of a thousand-plus Episcopalians singing in harmony, accompanied by organ, horns and choir was enough to stop hotel employees in their tracks, pulling groups of them to gather outside to listen.

The ancient dance of Communion was well choreographed, with ushers moving enormously long lines of people to the several stations for bread and wine, feeding all in a remarkably small period of time. Through it all, the sound of trumpets and a euphonium soared overhead, the sound moving through the room along with the people.

And then we were blessed and sent out to do the work we are given to do, refreshed in soul if not in body.

So it was off to committee meetings, then a lunch on the run, more committee meetings, and then back into legislative session. The HOD moved swiftly and efficiently through several resolutions, among other things hearing from several members of the Official Youth Presence about restoring funding for the Episcopal Youth Event.

I was asked to take part in the Daily News Briefing with clerical deputy Ruth Myers from the Diocese of Chicago and Bishop Edward Little of the Diocese of Northern Indiana. We each briefly addressed the media and then took questions. It was pretty low-key, given that Convention has barely started.

But stay tuned. Things will be revving up soon.

ECW delegate from All Saints Fort Worth shares her blog

Cynthia Hill, from All Saints Episcopal Church in Fort Worth, is serving as an ECW delegate at the ECW Triennial Meeting. She will be blogging about her convention experiences in Indianapolis, and she invites all to join her.  Her blog is called Cynthia’s Blog  at http://cadhill.wordpress.com.  Head on over to her blog and subscribe to get her updates! We have a link to her blog on our homepage sidebar in the Fort Worth sidebar.