Saturday, August 7, 2010

Illinois Episcopalians to vote for new bishop

From Illinois -Springfield-

Ever since 2003, when the Episcopal Church consecrated an openly gay man as New Hampshire's bishop, it has been under fire from conservative Anglicans around the world. Including some within its own ranks.

Bishop Peter Beckwith made headlines as one of several outspoken American bishops unhappy with the state of the Episcopal Church over the last decade. Beckwith led the Springfield, Ill., Diocese for 18 years. The diocese of about 5,000 people encompasses Southern and eastern-central Illinois and includes congregations in Alton, Belleville, Carbondale, Edwardsville, Glen Carbon, Granite City and O'Fallon.

Beckwith retired in February, and today, clergy and lay leaders from the diocese will come together to choose four nominees from a slate of 14 who will stand for election in September to succeed him.

The Episcopal Church is the 2.3 million-member U.S. branch of the 77 million-member worldwide Anglican Communion. It is one of 38 Anglican provinces around the world, the majority of which opposed the gay bishop's consecration in 2003.

According to church law, anyone in the Anglican Communion can be nominated for bishop. In the case of the Springfield Diocese, all the candidates are part of the Episcopal Church.
The Rev. Anthony Holder, vicar of St. Michael's Episcopal Church in O'Fallon and president of the Standing Committee, the diocese's eight-member ecclesiastical authority between bishops, said nine other candidates refused their nominations.

More here-

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