Letter from the Standing Committee, July 6 2017

The Episcopal Diocese of West Tennessee

A Letter from the Standing Committee

The Search for the Fourth Bishop of the Diocese of West Tennessee Recommendations Sought for Search & Transition Committees

The Standing Committee is charged with oversight and responsibility for the process leading to the election of a bishop. One of the first and most significant responsibilities is the appointment of members to serve on a Search Committee and a Transition Committee.

The Committee invites and encourages all members of The Episcopal Church in The Diocese of West Tennessee to participate in this processby recommending persons to serve. An equal number of lay persons and clergy are required. A recommendation—whether of another or of yourself—must be accompanied by

  1. your name and contact information;
  2. the committee for which you are making a recommendation;
  3. the person’s name and contact information;
  4. the name of the person’s church;
  5. a brief explanation of that person’s suitability for appointment.

All recommendations must be received no later than Monday, July 24, 2017, and may be sent via email to: BishopSearchWestTN@gmail.com or completed by online survey at: www.surveymonkey.com/r/ZPSR75Z.

The Search Committee

Canon 2 Sec. 3(a)(ii) outlines the responsibilities of the Search Committee. It shall

  1. develop and oversee a process for creating a Diocesan profile;
  2. receive nominations;
  3. review the qualifications of those being considered;
  4. provide to those being considered details of the total compensation package authorized by Bishop and Council; and
  5. submit to the Standing Committee at least ninety (90) days prior to the date of the election, at least three (3) nominees who have consented to stand for election and whose background checks have been approved.

In appointing members to this committee, the Standing Committee is seeking the following:

  • people who love the church and who love Jesus;
  • people who are trustworthy and will maintain confidentiality;
  • people who have knowledge of the Diocese and The Episcopal Church in general;
  • people who have the time to give or who will make the time to give;
  • people who can be team players;
  • people who understand the consensus model of decision making;
  • people who can use email effectively and efficiently; and
  • at least one person with the technical skills to facilitate effective communications using the internet and other means.

The Transition Committee

Canon 2 Sec. 3(b)(ii) outlines the responsibilities of the Transition Committee. It shall

  1. publish complete profiles of the nominees and any other educational material deemed helpful;
  2. provide for the “walk about” opportunities for all nominees to meet with as many members of the diocese as possible;
  3. provide hospitality for the candidates and their families;
  4. help in the planning of the Ordination or Seating of the new Bishop;
  5. assist the Bishop in adapting to and being introduced to the Diocesan Community; and
  6. provide for the transition of the retired and/or resigned Bishop from office.

In appointing members to this committee, the Standing Committee is seeking the following:

  • people who love the church and who love Jesus;
  • people who are organized;
  • people who can plan events and who know the geography of the diocese;
  • people who can get things done;
  • people with good communication skills, including the efficient use of email; and
  • at least one person with excellent liturgical skills.

Mandatory Orientation Retreat: September 8–9, 2017

Every member of both the Search and Transition Committees must join the Standing Committee for a retreat on September 8–9, 2017 at Church of the Holy Communion, 4645 Walnut Grove Road, Memphis, starting at 6:00 pm on Friday. This will provide a time to review the process and get a sense of the “big picture” of the work expected of the committees. Each member will also be commissioned for his or her ministry on the Search and Transition Committees.

The following morning members of the Search and Transition Committees will reconvene with our transition consultant, Lynn Schmissrauter, to continue their work. Members of the Transition Committee will be dismissed earlier in the day; members of the Search Committee will need to be present until 5:00 pm.

Overnight lodging will be provided for those committee members who need it.

Praying for our Process

As we begin our walk through the process of calling a new bishop, the Standing Committee calls upon all members of the Diocese to hold our process in prayer. Until the Committee completes its work of drafting a specific prayer for our common use, you may find the following prayer useful in the meantime:

Almighty God, giver of every good gift: Look graciously on your Church, and so guide the minds of those who shall choose a bishop for this Diocese, that we may receive a faithful pastor, who will care for your people and equip us for our ministries; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen. Book of Common Prayer, 818


Yours in Christ’s love,

The Rev. Gary Meade

President, the Standing Committee of The Episcopal Diocese of West Tennessee

The Standing Committee:  
The Rev. Dorothy Wells
Mrs. Martha Webb
The Rev. Gary Meade
Mrs. Stephanie Cheney
The Rev. Dn. Dr. Randy McCloy
Mr. Jim McGehee
The Rev. Jack Rogers
Dr. Bill Falvey

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