Editorial: Questions for the Bishop-Elect

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The Café, from time to time, publishes editorials concerning stories published on our site.  In this letter, John B. Chilton draws on the recent history of dioceses attempting to leave the church to frame questions that bishops-elect need to be asked prior to granting consents.


The Diocese of Dallas last week elected George Sumner to be their next bishop, effective with his consecration. As with all bishops-elect, consecration cannot take place without consent. Given recent history of some dioceses asserting the right to leave the Episcopal Church, it is imperative that those taking part in the consent process ask Sumner his views on the polity of the Episcopal Church. Specifically, what is his stand on whether dioceses have the unilateral power to leave the Episcopal Church? The reasons Sumner and the Diocese of Dallas are of particular concern are laid out below.

Regarding consent, the 2012 Constitution of the Episcopal Church states:

ARTICLE II Sec. 2. No one shall be ordained and consecrated Bishop until the attainment of thirty years of age; nor without the consent of a majority of the Standing Committees of all the Dioceses, and the consent of a majority of the Bishops of this Church exercising jurisdiction. No one shall be ordained and consecrated Bishop by fewer than three Bishops.

(For those wondering, the alternative of consent via General Convention no longer exists.)

Traditionally, Standing Committees and Bishops avoid substituting their judgment for the will of the diocese expressed in the election (but not without exception). Nevertheless, bishops cannot be consecrated without the consent of a majority of both the Standing Committees and Bishops. This feature of the Constitution and Canons is one of many expressions of the subsidiary nature of bishops and dioceses to the Episcopal Church as a whole.

In Fort Worth, South Carolina, and elsewhere, dioceses have asserted that they are autonomous, voluntary members of the Episcopal Church and have said they have left the Episcopal Church. The Episcopal Church and local continuing members of the dioceses dispute these claims. South Carolina is an example where the bishop-elect Mark Lawrence denied he would ever lead the diocese out of the Episcopal Church. See: (1) his answers to specific questions, and (2) news of his failure to gain sufficient consents. Lawrence gained sufficient consents on his second election. As bishop of South Carolina he lead the diocese out of the Episcopal Church. As in Fort Worth, the South Carolina case remains in the courts. The consent process worked the first time, but not the second.

Bishop-elect Sumner is principal of Wycliffe College, home to Ephraim Radner and Christopher Seitz of the Anglican Communion Institute, Inc. The ACI was party to a 2012 friend of the court brief in the Fort Worth case. The bishop-retired of Dallas serves on the ACI board of trustees. Other signatories included Communion Partner bishops, among them the current bishop suffragan of Dallas and the now retired Bishop of Dallas. The brief reads in part,

…As is well known, these bishops and ACI oppose the decision by the Diocese of Fort Worth to leave The Episcopal Church. They have no intention of withdrawing from the Church, but it is precisely because they intend to remain in the Church that they are concerned that the trial court ruling has misunderstood, and thereby damaged, the constitutional structure of The Episcopal Church….Acceptance of TEC’s claim that there are other bodies or offices with hierarchical supremacy over the diocesan bishop would require the Court to become embroiled in a searching historical analysis of difficult questions of church polity without any explicit language in the church’s governing instrument on which to base its conclusion. The First Amendment does not permit such a result.

In short, the brief is not friendly to the Episcopal Church. Whether or not it asserts a claim that dioceses can leave, the effect is the same as if it said they could. (And see the 2009 Bishops’ Statement on Polity below.) It avoids saying they cannot.

News of complaints filed against bishops signing the 2012 ACI friend of the court brief were made public on conservative blogs. The ENS story on this break in confidentiality is here:

In one instance, the complaint apparently concerns the fact that seven bishops endorsed an amicus curiae or “friend of the court” brief prepared by the Anglican Communion Institute, Inc. in the pending appeal of a court ruling involving the Diocese of Fort Worth and the bishop, clergy and laity who broke away from that diocese in November 2008.

The brief objects to the trial court’s ruling that told the dissidents to return “all property, as well as control of the diocesan corporation” to the Episcopal leaders of the diocese.

Tarrant County District Court Judge John Chupp said that because he found that the Episcopal Church’s governance is hierarchical in nature “the court follows Texas precedent governing hierarchical church property disputes, which holds that in the event of a dispute among its members, a constituent part of a hierarchical church consists of those individuals remaining loyal to the hierarchical church body.”

Those named in the Fort Worth complaint are retired Diocese of Texas Bishop Maurice M. Benitez, retired Diocese of Central Florida Bishop John W. Howe, Diocese of Dallas Bishop Suffragan Paul E. Lambert, Diocese of Albany Bishop William H. Love, Diocese of Western Louisiana Bishop D. Bruce MacPherson, Diocese of Springfield Bishop Daniel H. Martins, and Diocese of Dallas Bishop James M. Stanton.

The Episcopal Church and bishops who signed the 2012 brief subsequently entered into a conciliation accord. One of the bishops, Dan Martins, who signed the brief and entered into the conciliation accord wrote in reaction to the public announcement of the accord, “We feel manipulated and victimized. We are nowhere near happy about this outcome, even though we stand by our decision to accept the Accord.”

He then went on to write that in the Conciliation Accord

  • We reaffirmed our belief in the assertions of our amicus brief. We continue to believe that the polity of the Episcopal Church as characterized by the 2009 Bishops’ Statement on Polity is true and correct….

That 2009 Bishops’ Statement on Polity is written by ACI. It concludes,

The Episcopal Church consists of autonomous, but interdependent, dioceses not subject to any metropolitical power or hierarchical control. The Ecclesiastical Authorities in our dioceses are the Bishops and Standing Committees; no one else may act in or speak on behalf of the dioceses or of The Episcopal Church within the dioceses.

During his consent process then bishop-elect Martins did not answer the question of whether he believed dioceses could leave the Episcopal Church. Instead, he wrote:

Let me conclude by reiterating my intention to make my vows when I am consecrated a bishop without crossing my fingers, either physically or mentally. I will neither attempt to lead, nor cooperate with anyone else’s effort, in taking the Diocese of Springfield out of the Episcopal Church. In fact, I will oppose any such effort.

These are the questions that bishop-elect Sumner should be asked:

  • Do you believe that as diocesan you would have the authority to remove the Diocese of Dallas from the Episcopal Church? The question is not whether you promise never to lead your diocese out of church.
  • Do you believe that it would be a violation of the First Amendment for courts to inquire into whether the Episcopal Church is a hierarchical organization? In other words, do you concur with the 2012 friend of the court brief filed by the bishop suffragan of Dallas, the retired bishop diocesan of Dallas and other Communion Partner bishops in the Fort Worth case?
  • Do you concur with Martins’ reaffirmation of the 2009 statement?
  • Whether or not you oppose their action, do you agree with Bishop Iker and his followers in Fort Worth that they can leave the Episcopal Church and take the assets of the church with them?

Bishops and Standing Committees ought to ask bishop-elect Sumner these questions before they consider consent to his ordination and consecration. We have seen in South Carolina what happens when a bishop’s actions answer these questions only after consecration.


John B. Chilton is an economist and occasional contributor to Episcopal Café

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Professor Christopher Seitz
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Professor Christopher Seitz

Thank you Whit, Dirk and Rod for your balanced views.

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Professor Christopher Seitz
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Professor Christopher Seitz

--

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David Streever
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David Streever

Christopher:
In this comment, you've done it again; insisting that others "really mean" something else undermines the point of conversation & isn't civil. Telling others that they feel a certain way, think a certain way, and mean to say things other than their stated intentions isn't a form of civil conversation, which is what our comments section is for.
You are welcome to provide media critiques of our posts on your own blog or forum. I would be interested in reading them. Comments on our blog that demand that we allow you to characterize our opinions, thoughts, and feelings, however, are inappropriate.

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Cynthia Katsarelis
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Thank you, David, on this editorial position.

Every bishop candidate should answer these questions. Just ask all of them and eliminate the concern that only those with sketchy associates get asked.

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Professor Christopher Seitz
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Professor Christopher Seitz

to moderators: why is my response to Mr Chilton not appearing, if this is a public blog?

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David Streever
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David Streever

Hi Christopher,

This is not a 'public blog'; we do not allow any individual to post stories. It is a blog with a small team of writers. We are under no compulsion to print the comments of any individual than you are to, for instance, allow myself or John Chilton to come and speak to your class.

You comment quite a bit, and repetitively, and we don't allow many of your comments through because they are either uncivil or add nothing new to the conversation and are rehashes of comments you've previously posted. Your latest comments, to John Chilton, are repetitions of opinions you've posted before, and claims to understand his thinking & intentions. I've previously discussed this with you, at length, and explained that comments where you allege to know the intentions and mind of another and paint them as operating dishonestly are not going to be approved.

Thank you for reaching out & asking for feedback.

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Professor Christopher Seitz
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Professor Christopher Seitz

So George Sumner was involved with ACI for three years, but none of the last 9.

Thank you for pointing that out.

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Rob Holman
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Rob Holman

Please note, it was the illegal actions of the Presiding Bishop that activated the protective canons of the SC Diocese to disaffiliate. If the PB had conducted herself honestly SC would still be in TEC, just as +Lawrence promised.

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Richard Edward Helmer
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I’m not at all convinced it is fair to say that Dr. Sumner would be forced to hie to any particular interpretation. That Standing Committees and Bishops have the prerogative to ask questions of bishops elect prior to issuing consent is a given, and, like much of the Church, there would be a diversity of opinion and fairly wide latitude on what might be considered an acceptable response.

It was not all that long ago that a “liberal” bishop-elect failed to receive the requisite consents because of questions both about liberties he had taken with the Book of Common Prayer and the process by which his diocese elected him. Hypocrisy is an easy accusation to throw, but I don’t think either side of this debate is above the fray. The Church has been and remains imperfect as an institution, and processes of election and consent are messy. Calls for purity from either side ring hollow to me.

Again, I want to be clear (as I serve on a diocesan Standing Committee). I have not yet done the background work to decide whether or not such questions would be merited in this particular instance. I am truly not interested in a witch hunt. I also believe, Dr. Radner’s concerns notwithstanding, nor are most diocesan Standing Committees and Bishops. I agree with Dr. Radner that there are political risks to asking loaded questions. But those are less about Dr. Sumner, and more about the Church’s ongoing relationship with the Diocese of Dallas.

But I will also say that, as we learned in South Carolina, by the time a Bishop decides to lead a diocese out of the Church, the horse has already bolted. Effective intervention by the wider Church is virtually impossible from a practical standpoint, and we are in for a world of hurt.

If the questions John Chilton raises are asked, it is not a reflection on Dr. Sumner as much a reflection of where we are now as a Church. Those called to leadership know that questions are much more often about the questioner than the leader. The task of leaders is to answer them directly and clearly. I can only imagine Dr. Sumner knows this, given his background.

To Dr. Radner’s question:

No, I suppose there are no fatal objections to holding constitutional views common in the 19th century except two:

What are the intentions of elected diocesan leaders if they indeed hold the view that dioceses may unilaterally depart the Church; and

Are they willing to take seriously (even if they disagree) an evolution in constitutional interpretation and experience that has led us to where the majority of the Church understands this question of Church unity in the 21st century? In the final analysis, it is a majority of the House of Bishops that determines matters of abandonment. It seems only practical that their opinion on diocesan autonomy be respected.

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Daniel Francis
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Daniel Francis

I'm new to the Episcopal Church, and won't claim to know all the ins and outs of the situation, but I too am troubled by this post. George Sumner, nor anyone else, should be forced to hold only one particular interpretation of the Canons. If what he does in future results in some action that may threaten the physical unity of the church, that is to be confronted at that time. But until that time, George Sumner should be allowed hie own opinion on what the constitution allows or does not allow.

Btw, I seriously wonder if a conservative would be allowed to post such an opinion on this site? If they were to demand that Bishops should be chosen based solely on whether they hold the interpretation that ACI does?

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Member

On a note of fairness, I noticed that Dr. Seitz was both called out in the initial post and then given a per-day post limit for his replies. I hope that those who are singled out in posts are given the leeway needed to be able to speak for themselves in response. Otherwise, it's kind of a stacked deck.

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David Allen
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David Allen

Everyone who comments has a four per day per story limit. No one has been singled out. Please refer to the comment policy posted above.

Bro David

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Member

My point may not have been clear. John Chilton called out Dr. Seitz in the editorial. Dr. Seitz replied in comments. As he neared his daily limit, he was reminded of the limit (certainly appropriate and courteous in general, so a poster knows where he or she stands). However, Unless Cafe staff also are limited to four comments per day it seems unfair to single somebody out in a blog post and then handicap them in the reply. That was my point. This was comment #3 of my 4 per day limit. 🙂

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Professor Christopher Seitz
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Professor Christopher Seitz

Thank you for your fair comment, R Gillis.

Radner has a full teaching and publishing career, and parish work, as do I. We have between us 40 PhD students to supervise. Wycliffe was ranked #3 in North American post graduate excellence by First Things. I have published numerous (6) books and peer-reviewed articles since my arrival in 2007. Wycliffe is not ACI, and ACI is not all that we do in life.

We are however committed Episcopalians who care about the character and history and mission of this expression of Anglicanism. I am a third generation Priest with 7 family members alongside in parish ministry in 3 generations.

Sumner's career speaks for itself.

As for the relevant canon:

TEC Canons: Title IV.19.2

Sec. 2. No member of the Church, whether lay or ordained, may seek to have the Constitution and Canons of the Church interpreted by a secular court, or resort to a secular court to address a dispute arising under the Constitution and Canons, or for any purpose of delay, hindrance, review or otherwise affecting any proceeding under this Title.

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Amanda Clark
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Amanda Clark

"Wycliffe was ranked #3 in North American post graduate excellence by First Things. "

You mean a very conservative Christian magazine thought highly of a conservative evangelical Anglican seminary? Stop the presses!

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Mark Lawrence had left a trail calling into question his intent to remain in the Episcopal Church. After a failed consent process, clarifications, and re-election, consents were given.

Does Sumner have a trail of comments, publications, or activity to suggest he falls into the same camp? If so, what makes one think that he couldn't come up with responses sufficient to satisfy the needed majority to consent, since Lawrence did?

Has there been any credible effort in Dallas to attempt to leave the Church? If not, that might be why it never came up. We never asked our candidates in NJ if they would lead us out of the Church. Perhaps, under the line of thought of this blog post, that should be reviewed and clarified. Or do we just hold evangelicals win suspicion

Now, I'm willing to ask questions of candidates, but I think they need to be asked of all candidates. There was a lot of brouhaha about why Bp Brewer was meeting with one couple regarding baptism when he doesn't meet with all families of baptismal candidates. If Sumner is going to be asked questions, then everybody needs to be asked questions. I would propose also asking question about permitting communion without baptism in violation of canons as well as letting congregations use liturgies not authorized. Let's round out our concern for obedience to doctrine and discipline.

Some on the left are engaging in the same behavior as some on the right, just over different positions. It makes me wonder if we are a liberal church (accepting of difference) or if we just want everybody to agree one way or another and hold with suspicion those we fear don't.

I'm also concerned that now that the question has been raised, there is going to be a Dallas Watch, looking for the first sign that somebody might leave, when to my knowledge, no one has expressed any intent to leave.

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Chris Harwood
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Chris Harwood

Well said. I don't know of Sumner saying anything himself. It's because he's Evangelical and by association. As to the Watch if I were in Dallas and saw how much the rest of TEC hates/distrusts our Diocese and bishop elect, I'd want to leave now, even if I hadn't before. There is such a thing as self-fulfilling prophecy.

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Chris Harwood
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Chris Harwood

I didn't mean the entire diocese, but personal parishioner. On the other hand, if you Google "Episcopal News" this site often comes up very close to the top of the list and since it has Episcopal in the title, at least one person I've spoken to thought it was an official site, not having read the disclaimer.

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Member

Actually, from what I gather, it's only a Cafe editorial that has expressed this concern. Presumably the opinions of a blog wouldn't influence a diocese to leave. If so, then we've got deeper problems.

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Ephraim Radner
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Ephraim Radner

Chilton does it again: he spends half his last comment talking about my own views, as if this were pertinent to Sumner. And then he wonders why anybody thinks he is trying to "tar" Sumner with his dislike of other people, like me.

On the other hand, Rod Gillis raises the right questions to ask Sumner: how can your skills be fruitfully used in TEC? Any responsible consent process will begin with this question and end with that question. Sumner is a person of remarkable gifts that TEC should be rushing to embrace and put to use.

Sumner has led Wycliffe College in becoming the largest Anglican seminary in North America (yes, folks: larger than Virginia), while maintaining fiscal solvency and vigor, and all without anything close to the endowment Virginia Seminary relies on. He has done this in conjunction with and as part of a major secular academic institution -- the University of Toronto -- and managed to become respected and befriended by people of every stripe and view. The school's programs engage traditional parish ministry, church planting, indigenous education, mission, and urban and international development. Its doctoral programs are key to the theological work at the Toronto School of Theology. The average age of the school's students is young, with many MDiv's and others in their 20's. International students covet a place at Wycliffe. Non-Anglicans want to come and study at Wycliffe, and many become Anglicans because of what they discover there.

In case anybody hadn't noticed, TEC's theological education system is in shambles, with seminaries closing or about to close, confused mission, and trust among stake-holders at an all-time low.

The questions to ask Sumner then are: how can you be a part of sharing your wisdom and strengthening our common mission of training and raising up leaders in our midst? of encouraging aboriginal ministry? of ordering our formational vision? Will you help us? How can we help you?

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Rod Gillis
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Rod Gillis

"On the other hand, Rod Gillis raises the right questions to ask Sumner..." If so, only tacitly. I simply wanted to note, as someone who is neither a social conservative nor an evangelical, something about the positive reputation of Wycliffe College where Canon Sumner has been the principal. Wycliffe does seem to be one of the exceptions to a rather disconcerting trend in theological education. The student demographic is particularly encouraging given the aging demographic of postulants and clergy in Canada for example. The current state of theological education and theological colleges is part of the larger demographic crisis facing many North American churches.

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Rod Gillis
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Rod Gillis

Can't comment on the TEC polity issues because I don't know much about them. However, I would point out that Wycliffe College is not the Anglican Communion Institute. Wycliffe, now a member of the federated Toronto School of Theology, is one of Canada's oldest theological schools. It has always been the "evangelical" theological school in Canada. It has a reputation for being a conservative school while at the same time being widely respected for academics. Interestingly, Wycliffe appears to be doing very well by comparison with theological schools in Canada and the U.S. . The few colleagues of my acquaintance who have studied there strike my as top notch.

There is an article in The Anglican Journal about Canon Sumner's election to Dallas, including some comments by Sumner reacting to his election. I gather his ordination as a bishop is scheduled for November 14th pending consents.

http://www.anglicanjournal.com/articles/wycliffe-principal-elected-bishop-of-dallas

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Ephraim Radner
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Ephraim Radner

I have a simple question: what's wrong with thinking and stating a view of TEC's constitution -- a view in accord with numerous 19th century Episcopalians, including bishops and scholars -- that is different from the Presiding Bishop's (and John Chilton's)?

Is that a reason to be charged with violations of our ordination vows and our capacity to fulfill our vocations in this church? On what basis? Do TEC's Constitution and Canons give anyone the right to subject priests and bishops to detailed loyalty oaths beyond the rather important ones at their ordinations and consecrations?

That oath is the following: "I do believe the Holy Scriptures of the Old and New
Testaments to be the Word of God, and to contain all things
necessary to salvation; and I do solemnly engage to conform
to the Doctrine, Discipline, and Worship of the Episcopal
Church." I get the fact that some people are worried that Dallas could try to leave TEC. But extraordinary cross-examinations aren't going to do the trick; indeed, they can only sow seeds of mistrust. And, after all, if they lie at their ordinations about this, they are certainly liable to lie to a House sub-committee.)

The Consent process asks the following of the electing diocese, to which other Standing Committees respond: do they affirm the individual they present to be " duly and lawfully elected and to be of such sufficiency in learning, of such soundness in the Faith, and of such godly character as to be able to exercise the Office of a Bishop to the honor of God and the edifying of the Church, and to be a wholesome example to the flock of Christ."

I have no idea what Sumner's considered views are regarding how best to interpret TEC's constitution and polity, given present disagreements. Frankly I don't care. It would be interesting to have a discussion some day. But I strongly believe that these views, whatever they are, as long as they are governed by the "learning" and godly faith and example he in fact embodies to an extraordinary degree, are canonically sufficient to our church's test for election; and that to require more would indeed violate both the letter and spirit of our Constitution, not to mention the more important aspects of evangelical trust that we are called to exercise in our common life.

Chilton deeply dislikes my views and those of the Anglican Communion Institute, and has taken every opportunity on this blog to display his disdain. That's his prerogative. But now he wants to tar George Sumner with his projected antipathies.... after all, Sumner works in the same place I do -- he's a suspect! And as a suspect, he needs to be vetted by a special extra-judicial process.

I consider this kind of game disreputable.

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Richard Edward Helmer
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One of the charges in the consecration of a Bishop is to “guard the faith, unity, and discipline of the Church.” (BCP, p. 517)

It does not strike me at all beyond the purview of Bishops and Standing Committees to ask questions of new bishops-elect that get to the heart of this charge, as it is central to the Office of Bishop.

Withdrawing dioceses from the Church (a course of action quite arguable in our polity) in tangibly and demonstrably destructive of unity at almost every level, from the integrity of local congregation to the collegiality of the House of Bishops. What could be more appropriate than to ask bishops-elect their opinion on whether such a breach is ever possible -- especially at a time when such a question is clearly a matter of some dispute (and not just by the Presiding Bishop or John Chilton or the ACI)?

I have no opinion on Sumner’s position on this question, either, but I am sure, having weathered the election process, he can answer a question like this without considering it a personal attack on his character. Bishops-elect of many theological persuasions have borne this level of scrutiny, both in writing and in hearings in the past.

Those who have answered it clearly have also demonstrably remained an active part of the Church.

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Paul Goings
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Paul Goings

What we really need, I suppose, is a House (of Bishops) Committee on Un-Episcopalian Activities, suitably empowered to investigate persons suspected of subverting the polity of the Episcopal Church.

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Ellen Campbell
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Ellen Campbell

I agree with these questions. They are very good. Why did the diocese not ask these questions during the election process. Why did they vote him in? We have poison in our Church and it spreads.

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Ronald Clingenpeel
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Ronald Clingenpeel

You assume these questions were not asked. How did you come to that conclusion?

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Paul Powers
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Paul Powers

A better question one would be "Do you believe the Diocesan Convention of the Diocese of Dallas has the authority to remove the Diocese from the Episcopal Church?" I doubt that the bishops of any of the withdrawing dioceses would claim the authority to do so on their own.

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Rob Shattuck
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Rob Shattuck

I find it interesting that you only present the first part of the FTW diocese court case, and neglect to tell the readers about what has transpired since then, especially most recently. I'll leave it to you to expound. By the way, if a majority of people/churches in the Dallas diocese want to leave TEC, what does Bishop-elect Sumner do?

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June Butler
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I agree completely that John Chilton's list of questions should be asked and all questions answered completely and satisfactorily before the vote on consents for George Sumner is taken. If he does not answer, then consents should be withheld. One Mark Lawrence should be sufficient for the church to learn the lesson.

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June Butler
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Rob, sorry. I meant my comment to stand on its own, rather than as a reply to yours.

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Professor Christopher Seitz
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Professor Christopher Seitz

Just out of curiosity, is that because you believe the C/C are now irrelevant?

I also ask in part because, when expert witnesses are appealing before civil courts, they do not have that kind of latitude. Courts want to know–having been asked even against the C/C–what the C/C are held to assert.

Such is the present litigious life in TEC.

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Whit Johnstone
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Whit Johnstone

Why not amend the constitution and canons to define the Episcopal Church as a hierarchical church and making the Presiding Bishop as metropolitan archbishop with a geographic archdiocese. That would end the dispute over whether TEC has a hierarchy above the dioscean level under the current constitution. It would also solve the theological problem of a the presiding bishop being a bishop without a diocese.

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Carolyn Peet
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Carolyn Peet

Agree. This would simply paper up what is being attempted already. GC is just around the corner, this would solve the whole problem. But it would also expose the whole church to legal liability, as is the case with the Roman Catholic church.

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Whit Johnstone
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Whit Johnstone

Well, do we want to limit the church's liability for diosean actions, or do we want to stop dioceses from seceding from the national church & taking their assets? The courts have said we can't have it both ways.

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Alan Justice
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Alan Justice

Not only should these questions be asked before the consecration; they should have been asked before the election.

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Professor Christopher Seitz
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Professor Christopher Seitz

I believe the C/C of TEC forbid asking a civil court to determine its polity...

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Jeremy Bates
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Jeremy Bates

Where? Citation, please?

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Jeremy Bates
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Jeremy Bates

I believe that the bishops have a fiduciary duty to ask these questions of Bishop-elect Sumner.

And to get the answers in writing, with an original signature.

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J. W. McRee
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J. W. McRee

So the most important question is, "Are you going to lead the Diocese of Dallas out of ECUSA?", rather than "How are you going to leading the Diocese in spreading the good news of Jesus Christ?" Good to know.

[J. W. - Welcome first time commenter. Cafe policy is comments should include first and last names. - ed.]

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Jeremy Bates
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Jeremy Bates

Given what happened in South Carolina, don't you think the first question is part of the second?

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