I write to share with you that the Standing Committee of the Episcopal Diocese of Mississippi has selected me to be on a final slate of five nominees to be their next Bishop. I am grateful to Bishop Duncan Gray for nominating me and for the confidence the Search and Standing Committees of Mississippi are placing in me. This is an incredible honor.
I love St. Paul’s deeply, and I want you to know this is not something I was seeking out, but it came seeking me. The last few months of discernment around this potential call have been demanding yet rewarding. As a priest I belong to the whole Church, not just to one congregation. That means being open to what the Holy Spirit may be calling me and my family to do.
It is also important for you to remember that Mississippi’s selection of me as a nominee is just that—a nomination. The clergy and lay people of Mississippi will choose a Bishop-elect at their annual Diocesan Council on Feb. 3. I believe I am called to this journey whatever the outcome. I view it as a privilege to be of service to the Diocese of Mississippi by helping to discern what they are seeking in their next Bishop, and I am prayerfully open to the will of God and the Church in this process.
In the meantime, I remain fully committed to the work we are doing together at St. Paul’s. My focus and attention remain with you, and on what God is doing with us. The work of living our Rule of Life, “Growing in Relationships, Growing in Service, Growing in Christ,” continues and there is much work still to do.
Between now and the election on Feb. 3, I ask your prayers for the people of Mississippi in their discernment, for my fellow candidates, and for me and my family.
Tonight, as part of our Wednesdays at Church (W@tCh) program, I will be talking a little about what bishops do, and how bishops are selected in The Episcopal Church. I’m happy to address questions or concerns then, or at any time in the future.
Thank you for your support, and for all you do for me, my family, and St. Paul’s. It is a blessing to serve God and our community alongside you! Keep those prayers coming, and as always, keep the faith, St. Paul’s.