We propose a task force to study episcopal elections and report to the 79th General Convention with possible changes to our current process of discernment, nomination, election, and transition of bishops, including the selection and training of transition consultants. We also propose that this task force be given the authority to work with the Office of Pastoral Development to provide updated and digitized resources for dioceses in search processes. We have requested significant funding in order to make the updating work possible.
D004: Create a Task Force to Study Episcopal Elections and Appointments of Bishops
Resolved, the House of ____________ concurring, that a Task Force on the Episcopacy be appointed by the Presiding Officers composed of four bishops, four presbyters or deacons, and eight lay persons; and be it further
Resolved, that at least one member of the Task Force will have been a finalist in an Episcopal search who did not receive enough votes for election in the last three years; at least one member of the Task Force will have served as a Transition Consultant in an Episcopal search over the past three years; and at least two members of the Task Force will have served on an Episcopal Search and/or Transition Committee in an Episcopal search process over the past three years; and be it further
Resolved, that the Task Force will study the election, appointment, roles, and responsibilities of the Episcopate, including the use of Bishops Diocesan, Bishops Coadjutor, Bishops Suffragan, Provisional Bishops, Missionary Bishops, and Assistant Bishops in this Church; looking specifically at the particular gifts, life experience, and expertise required for episcopal office; and be it further
Resolved, that the Task Force will pay particular attention to the recent trend away from a diverse House of Bishop, and seek ways to encourage diversity in the Episcopate; and be it further
Resolved, that the Task Force will propose to the 79th General Convention a new process for discernment, nomination, formation, search, election, and transition of bishops in The Episcopal Church including, but not limited to: the roles and responsibilities of the Office of Pastoral Development; the selection of, roles and responsibilities of Transition Consultants; how adjoining dioceses may aid and inform the discernment of a diocese in transition; and any required Constitutional and Canonical changes necessary; and be it further
Resolved, That the Task Force will work with the Office of Pastoral Development to develop best practices and educational materials to be published electronically and made publicly available, and may use some of its budget to retain consultants who will help with this task; and be it further
Resolved, That the General Convention request the Joint Standing Committee on Program, Budget and Finance to consider a budget allocation of $150,000 for the implementation of this resolution.