On February 10, Washington National Cathedral will host the Prayer Vigil of Peace and Reconciliation, beginning at noon with Eucharist, and continuing for 24 hours to conclude with the ordination and consecration of the Ven. Carl Wright as the Episcopal Church’s next bishop suffragan for armed services and federal ministries. Wright was selected by the House of Bishops in September. His service will be live streamed by the cathedral.
The Prayer Vigil is a joint effort between Episcopal Peace Fellowship and the Episcopal Church’s Office of Federal Ministries. It has been a tradition since 1990, when the then bishop suffragan elect asked EPF to join him in a prayer vigil for peace before his consecration. The relationship between the EPF and the bishop suffragan has historically been antagonistic, with EPF members often protesting during the consecration (prior to the beginning of the vigils). The bishop suffragan oversees Episcopal chaplains in the federal departments of Defense and Veterans Affairs, and the federal Bureau of Prisons. The Episcopal Peace Fellowship feels that this office is in opposition to the Christian responsibility to foster peace. Outgoing Bishop Suffragan James “Jay” Magness appreciates the push from the EPF to find peaceful resolutions: “It has been important for me to always be reminded of the fact that there are people in EPF who are praying constantly for peace; that we will find peaceable solutions to life’s greatest problems and the world’s greatest problems as opposed to military solutions.” With the EPF, he worked to get Resolution A048 passed in 2015, to study the principles of Just War.
The Episcopal News Service has more here.
Episcopalians across the church can participate in the vigil by signing up for 30-minute vigil watch slots in Washington or from afar.