quelle surprise!

Katharine Jefferts Schori, Bishop of the Diocese of Nevada, was elected the 26th Presiding Bishop of the Episcopal Church, June 18, on the fifth ballot cast by the House of Bishops. Her election was confirmed by the House of Deputies, as is required by church canons. Below are the results of each ballot as tallied by the House of Bishops and released by the Voting Secretary of the House of Deputies.

The Convention will dive back in to the substance of the Windsor resolutions tomorrow, and no major decisions have been made in that area yet. However, many feel that the election of Bishop Jefferts Schori bodes well for those of us favoring an inclusive church. Not only will she be the first woman Primate of a province of the Anglican Communion (in which most provinces don’t ordain women at all), but she is generally thought to be to the left of most of the other six candidates. She is one of the bishops who participated in the consecration of Gene Robinson as Bishop of New Hampshire. She is widely respected, but no one, and I mean no one, thought she had a chance at being elected Presiding Bishop. This is quite a surprise.

Bishop Jefferts Schori will be the first Presiding Bishop to hold a Ph.D. in the sciences; she is an oceanographer. And a pilot. And fluent in Spanish, as she demonstrated when she addressed the Convention this evening in both English and Spanish.
She is also the only candidate who spoke about the UN’s Millenium Development Goals in her candidate video. As the MDG seem to be the emerging vision for the future of Episcopal mission, this is a very interesting choice on the part of the House of Bishops.

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11 Responses to “quelle surprise!”

  1. Aron Says:

    The Wife and I were heading back from Dallas this afternoon when I flipped over to NPR to catch the news, which is when we heard The News.

    Our response was synchonized: “Holy Sh*t!”

    I mean, wow!

    I don’t know much about the Presiding Bishop-elect, but I know she’s gotta have the Archbishop of Nigeria pitching a fit.

    The conservatives went into this convention looking for a penitent Church. The manner in which the GC responded is much like asking for a raise and getting fired instead.

    The Primates suddenly have to let a girl into the treehouse. They have to take down their “Buck’s only” sign. There’s a doe in this club!

  2. Res Publica Says:

    I know, I’m frankly elated. And amazed. The Windsor resolutions are mostly still waiting votes tomorrow and Tuesday, but I can’t help thinking that this bodes well for the church’s future, regardless of whatever tortured committee-speak “regret” emerges from the legislative process. The reasserters (or realigners or whatever they call themselves these days) are still looking at nine years with ++ Katherine.

    The conserva-primates are going to crap their vestments!

  3. midniter Says:

    I’d like to add that she received 95 votes, with the other 93 votes being split between 6 candidates, all men.

  4. plover Says:

    Enthusiastic applause, cheers and shouts of joy erupted in the House of Deputies as President George Werner read Special Order E017, the resolution asking the Deputies to approve Jefferts Schori’s election. A two-thirds majority of both clergy and lay deputies then confirmed her election.

    The tally came to nearly 90% of the delegations voting to confirm. Is 10% a fair estimate of the conservative faction in ECUSA? Or will a lot of the Deputies defer to the bishops even if they don’t necessarily agree with the choice? (And why are there 180 bishops and only 110 diocese? And why was there a bishop from Colombia as a candidate?)

    Oh yay, we get to hear from the grumpy-pants contingent:

    However, Deputy Eddie Blue of Maryland, said he would not support Jefferts Schori’s election. “I am shocked, dismayed and saddened by the choice of the House of Bishops,” he told the House. Citing strains within the Anglican Communion concerning issues of gender and sexuality, he added: “We are acting as imperialists, as we often do.”

    So the subtext is: “opposing patriarchy” = “imperialism”? Yeesh.

    Do you know anything about this Rev. Parsley who was the clear second? Is he the patriarchal/conservative choice? The bland/uncontroversial choice? Or does he just represent a different leadership style on some relatively non-ideological ground?

    Overall, this seems flippin’ cool.

  5. almostinfamous Says:

    Bishop Jefferts Schori will be the first Presiding Bishop to hold a Ph.D. in the sciences; she is an oceanographer. And a pilot. And fluent in Spanish, as she demonstrated when she addressed the Convention this evening in both English and Spanish.
    She is also the only candidate who spoke about the UN’s Millenium Development Goals in her candidate video. As the MDG seem to be the emerging vision for the future of Episcopal mission, this is a very interesting choice on the part of the House of Bishops.

    that’s the coolest past of any head of any church i’ve heard of. compare that to say, ratzinger. what was he? oh yeah… nazi youth. she’s practically God compared to him.

  6. Res Publica Says:

    Is 10% a fair estimate of the conservative faction in ECUSA?

    Probably. The House of Deputies doesn’t just “go along” with the bishops, although in the particular matter of the election of the PB, the House of Bishops is pretty much in charge. It is unlikely that they would certify a condidate that the Deputies failed to confirm, but the election of the PB is really in the hands of the Bishops. Interestingly enough, there is legislation before this year’s GC that would change that process and cause the next PB to be elected by both houses.

    There is some talk that the conservatives are “giving up”. That would explain why Eddy Blue was the only dissenting voice in the House of Deputies. I doubt that they’re giving up, though. They want to take over, and if they no longer believe that they can get their way through the GC, they may have given up on GC. That’s not the same as giving up. We all know that the wingnuts never stop.

    And why are there 180 bishops and only 110 diocese? Larger dioceses often have suffragan bishops or bishops coadjutor….basically “assistant” bishops, but they have seats in the House of Bishops. I’m not entirely sure how all that works, but that’s basically the answer. There is only one “bishop with jurisdiction” for each diocese, though.

    And why was there a bishop from Colombia as a candidate?

    The ECUSA includes historical mission churches that are not yet strong enough to form their own provinces. Within the ECUSA, province II (NY and NJ) also includes Hati, the Virgin Islands, and the Convocation of American Churches in Europe. Province IX consists of Columbia, the Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Litoral, Honduras, Venezuela and Puerto Rico.

  7. Res Publica Says:

    Do you know anything about this Rev. Parsley who was the clear second? Is he the patriarchal/conservative choice?

    I don’t know much. He is probably to the right of Jefferts Schori, but basically a moderate, and he has stood up to the wingnuts before. The AAC and some outfit called “Stand Firm Alabama” have condemned him in the past when he took action to prevent a rogue priest (associated with the AAC’s “Network”) tried to lead an entire congregation out of the ECUSA. He voted against Gene Robinson’s consecration, but did so because he believed that the ECUSA should wait for a broader consensus to emerge around issues of sexuality before taking such action legislatively. While I do not agree, I think that’s a reasonable position held in good faith.

    I’m sure Bishop Parsley would have been a perfectly fine PB, and he was definitely the safer choice. Which is what makes Bishop Jefferts Schori’s election so interesting.

  8. cmdrtinfoil Says:

    Cue brimstone. The ACC already have their knickers in a knot because of Jefferts Schori’s support for Robinson.

    Do you know anything about this Rev. Parsley…

    Mark Harris characterized Parsley as to the right of Jefferts Schori.

    It sounds as though GC is trying to move forward without completely spoiling the punchbowl, although the ACC would be pleased only if we wound the clock back by what… 40 or 50 years?

    And cue the Akinolan raiding parties. The patriarchs no doubt will try to leave with all the marbles.

  9. cmdrtinfoil Says:

    Wuppers… read AAC for ACC. Sorry.

  10. Res Publica Says:

    Here’s an interesting story about two worship services on Friday night. One, presided over by Teh Gay Bishop, Gene Robinson, packed the house with over 1000 people, with worshippers standing OUTSIDE THE CHURCH and sitting in the BASEMENT. The other, sponsored by the AAC, The Network, Forward in Faith and their ilk, was held in a windowless room in the convention center, and was attended by around 80 people. pwn3d!!1!

  11. Res Publica Says:

    The patriarchs no doubt will try to leave with all the marbles.

    That’s the truest thing I’ve heard all week. In fact, I would argue that this whole conflict is primarily about “the marbles”. The network folks want to play church and set up Robert Duncan as Archbishop (you know they’d want an Archbishop), but they know they’ll never be able to get their own neogothic cathedrals within which to prance about. Because let’s get real: the bizzaro mix of evangelical theology, arch anglocatholic liturgy, sexism, homophobia and the 1928 prayerbook will be about as appealing to most Americans as a week of root canals. They’ll never be able to gather a church of their own, beyond the cranky fringes of the Episcopal Church.

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