The four presiding bishop nominees were introduced in a joint session between the House of Deputies and House of Bishops on Wednesday, June 24 at the 78th General Convention. The session began with short introductory video clips made by each candidate using a phone or iPad. After the video presentations, each bishop gave a three minute statement. A Q & A followed comprised of 186 questions submitted by bishops, deputies and alternates that were condensed into five questions per eight categories: leadership; LGBT matters; structure matters; faith-based matters; theology and liturgy matters; reconciliation maters; divestment matters; and spiritual life and self-care. A few highlights from the session:

smithBishop Dabney Smith, Diocese of Southwest Florida: “I think it’s important to recognize and emphasize that our primary identity is as baptized people, not as anything else. Every person I have ever talked to that has an opinion is conservative and progressive about something. Baptism is a gift from god that does not break down, so therefore we are committed to each other for this lifetime and the life to come. Listening and patience is a gift that we give each other in the life of the church.”

breidenthalBishop Thomas Breidenthal, Diocese of Southern Ohio: “We have to understand we are called in the world. We need to be out in our neighborhood, whatever it is. We will find the people who don’t feel they have a place in our church. If we are willing to learn from them, enter into interfaith dialogue, then sacred ground makes itself available to us. We can only be open to new people also if we are willing to let out enough space between the people most familiar to us for Jesus to stand there.”

curryBishop Michael Curry, Diocese of North Carolina: “I would hope for the day the face of the Episcopal Church reflects the faces of all our people in all their wondrous variety. When Jesus said come unto me, he meant ‘all y’all’” therefore “it is gospel work to go out and seek to make sure that no child goes to bed hungry in this society, in any society on God’s green earth. It is gospel work because Jesus has already led the way. When we go forth, and are who we are, and the world sees us, then the world may well respond. Become the change you want to see.”

douglasBishop Ian Douglas, Diocese of Connecticut: “I believe in a God that is alive, a God that actually meets those who are so much in need of healing and wholeness and new life. That’s what God did in Jesus Christ and that’s what God continues to do in us by the power of the Holy Spirit by the virtues of our baptism. It’s in the world where we are called to be faithful to that new life of God in Christ. And so it’s in our neighborhoods where that healing action of God so much needs to be met, celebrated and made real.”



Posted by DioStaff

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