THE CONVOCATION OF EPISCOPAL CHURCHES IN EUROPE

SEARCH FOR THE NEXT BISHOP IN CHARGE

PRAYER FOR THE CONVOCATION

O God, we pray for the Convocation of Episcopal Churches in Europe as we discern and elect a Bishop to serve your people, build up your Church and proclaim boldly the Gospel to the world. Send us, we pray, an apostle who is a wise counsellor, a merciful pastor, filled with your joy and grace. May your servant have the abundant gifts needed to lead your flock and the strength and courage to administer them. And may we renew and rededicate our lives to your will and service. All this we pray in the Name of our Great High Priest and Servant of the servants of God, Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

TRANSITION COMMITTEE UPDATE

In less than two weeks, the nominees for Bishop and their spouses will be visiting the Convocation for the walkabout weekend:

Town Halls:

  • Thursday, September 27, at 6:00 p.m. (reception from 4:30 p.m.) American Cathedral, Paris
  • Saturday, September 29, 12 noon, Church of the Ascension, Munich 
  • Sunday, September 30, 3:00 p.m., St. Paul’s Within the Walls, Rome

Link: Town Hall registration - Last minute sign-ups are welcome!
We are looking forward to seeing as many of you as possible at the town halls!

Thank you for all your proposed questions. We received nearly 50 suggestions. Some covered similar topics, but it was still not an easy task to choose the 12 questions (four per city) that the nominees will be asked to answer. The questions will cover the Convocation, Vision, External Relations and Personal. You can find them here: (link to questions)
At each town hall, written questions from the floor will also be taken after the planned questions have been answered (and within the timeframe allowed). If a certain question is not asked at your town hall, please remember that all the town halls will be recorded and you will have a chance to see the nominees answer different questions online. This is a really great opportunity, giving you more time to study and learn more about our Bishop nominees.
Now that the town hall events are almost upon us, the election itself is coming into focus. When the newly founded Episcopal Church organized itself after the American Revolution, it had to decide how to choose its bishops. The then-Church of England system (Crown appointment) was no longer available or desirable and, due to the constitutional separation of church and state, neither the new United States executive nor legislature could play a role. Instead, reverting to the practice of the early Church, church leaders decided that bishops would be elected.
Our election takes place during our annual Convention in Waterloo from October 18 - 21. The electorate consists of the two lay delegates selected by each Convocation parish and organized mission (currently 20 delegates in total), the lay members of the Council of Advice (four in total) and all canonically resident clergy registered to attend the Convention (currently 24 are registered). A subcommittee of the Transition Committee drafted a special rule of order (basically a set of rules prescribing how the elections will be run) that was approved at the last meeting of the Council of Advice and will be presented to the Convention for delegates' approval on the first day.
According to item 8:

  • “The Convention shall vote by ballot and by orders, with the lay and clerical members voting concurrently and separately. …. The concurrence of a majority of each Order shall be necessary for an election.”

What does that mean? The laity and the clergy vote separately (but at the same time) and a nominee is elected when he receives a majority in each order (laity and clergy). We don’t know how many ballots we will need. The first ballot is on Friday morning. We currently have up to nine ballots planned, but balloting will continue until the election of new Bishop in Charge. 
One last comment: The delegates will want to hear your opinions, and many parishes are organizing events at which the videos of the town halls can be watched together and the different viewpoints gathered. But they vote according to their conscience and as guided, in prayer, by the Holy Spirit. For that reason, the election will be embedded in prayer and worship and, according to item 9 of the rule of order, 

  • “The President may at any time in the President’s discretion interrupt the proceedings of the Convention for discussion, prayer, meditation or such other form of Divine Service as the President may deem necessary or appropriate to keep the mood of the Convention oriented to the important spiritual task confronting it.”

If you have questions on any of these topics, or generally about the process, please send them to the Transition Committee email, transition@tec-europe.org 

Thanks,The Transition Committee

NOMINEES FOR BISHOP IN CHARGE

The Rev. Mark D.W. Edington

Rector, Saint John’s Church, Newtonville, Massachusetts, USA, and Director, Amherst College Press

The Rev. Steven D. Paulikas

Rector, All Saints’ Church, Brooklyn, New York, USA

The Very Rev. Dr. Benjamin A. Shambaugh

Dean: The Cathedral Church of St. Luke, Portland, Maine, USA

The Rev. Canon Paul-Gordon Chandler

President/CEO, CARAVAN, an international peacebuilding ministry, appointed mission partner with The Episcopal Church, based out of the greater Chicago area, Illinois, USA