General Convention 2006

Send out your light and your truth; let them lead me; let them bring me to your holy hill and to your dwelling. Then I will go to the altar of God, and I will praise you . . . Psalm 43:3-4

The General Convention of the Episcopal Church
met in Columbus, Ohio from June 11-21, 2006.
This blog offers a view of the convention and beyond from the perspective of Lydia Evans, a two-time lay deputy from the Diocese of South Carolina.
Visit the links found below for additional resources
as well as pre- and post-convention coverage.
Thank you for remembering the convention deputies and their families in your prayers. For further resources, visit my webpages.
For all posts from the month of June, click here.
For all posts from the month of July, click here.


GC Could Lose Right to Consent to Bishops-elect

From the May 3, 2006 issue of The Living Church: "The House of Deputies would lose the right to give consent to episcopal elections that occur within 120 days of General Convention under one of several proposed changes to Canon III, the canons on ministry, which also describe the ordination process and the election of bishops." The full article may be found here.

This change would require the consent of two consecutive General Conventions in order to take effect. While it has been acknowledged that this was proposed prior to the election of Gene Robinson as Bishop Co-adjutor of New Hampshire in 2003, it must also be noted that bishops-elect to be confirmed at General Convention garner more attention in the media than those approved by Standing Committees and Diocesan Bishops throughout the triennium.

As a deputy to GC in 2003, I voted against the confirmation of Gene Robinson. In addition, I have served on a Standing Committee which withheld consent from time to time in various elections. As we were generally convened for more pressing diocesan matters, the question of consent often came at the end of a lengthy agenda. One might be tempted to give a quick nod in these elections.

But there is also great difference of opinion on the grounds for withholding consent. As far as I am concerned, there is more at stake than the question of whether or not the election was conducted according to the canons. A bishop is consecrated for the whole Church (and as has been made abundantly clear since 2003, for the whole Communion). It is incumbent, therefore, upon Standing Committees (and Bishops) to "exercise extreme caution" when giving consent to an election. If this change in procedure comes to pass, it will require their due diligence to ensure that the approval of Bishops-elect is more than a rubber stamp.


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