Saturday, January 16, 2010

Update on consent process for bishops suffragan-elect

[The Diocese of Los Angeles - 12JAN2010] – The 120-day processes by which bishops and standing committees of the 110 dioceses of the Episcopal Church are asked to provide formal consent to the December 2009 elections of two bishops suffragan in the Diocese of Los Angeles opened on January 5 and January 8, officials have confirmed.

“This is now a period of reflection, prayer and discernment among the bishops and standing committees,” Diocesan Bishop J. Jon Bruno said of the consent process as it officially opened. “Our diocesan officers and bishops-elect will honor this process by postponing public comment, including media interviews, until after the required consents are received. We give thanks that the Holy Spirit is at work as the Church moves forward.”

The Presiding Bishop’s Office on January 5 sent letters to bishops with jurisdiction (primarily bishops diocesan) requesting consent to the election of the Rev. Canon Mary Douglas Glasspool, and on January 8 sent similar letters requesting consent to the election of the Rev. Canon Diane Jardine Bruce. These letters followed verification in the Presiding Bishop’s Office of reports including physical and psychological examinations.

On the same dates, the Standing Committee of the Diocese of Los Angeles sent letters to the Episcopal Church’s other 109 diocesan standing committees requesting consent to the elections of Bruce and Glasspool.

The Los Angeles diocesan standing committee will tabulate the responses it receives while the Presiding Bishop’s Office receives bishops’ responses and typically does not disclose related information until those results are complete and certified.

Canon III.11.4 (a) of the Episcopal Church requires that a majority of diocesan bishops and a majority of diocesan standing committees must consent to each episcopal election.

These separate actions must be completed within 120 days from the day after notice of the election was sent to designated recipients, and each bishop-elect must receive a majority (at least 50% plus 1) of consents from the diocesan bishops as well as a majority from the standing committees in order for ordination to proceed.

If a majority is not received from the bishops and/or the standing committees, the Presiding Bishop is required by Canon III.11.5 to declare the election null and void.

Meanwhile, the Presiding Bishop’s Office has confirmed that the 120-day consent processes will conclude on May 5 for Glasspool and on May 8 for Bruce. Their ordination to the episcopate is scheduled for May 15 at the Long Beach Arena, pending receipt of necessary consent

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