Update on Search for Next Bishop of Pennsylvania

The Episcopal Diocese of Pennsylvania is in the midst of a search for our next Diocesan Bishop. A Search Committee comprised of people—clergy and lay—from throughout the diocese has been working since the summer to develop a diocesan profile, review candidates, and recommend a slate of candidates to the Diocese. The slate, announced January 28, consists of:

  • The Rev. W. Frank Allen, Rector, St. David’s Church, Wayne, Pennsylvania, Diocese of Pennsylvania
  • The Rev. Canon Daniel G.P. Gutierrez, Canon to the Ordinary, Chief Operating Officer, and Chief of Staff, Diocese of the Rio Grande, Albuquerque, New Mexico
  • The Rev. Canon John T.W. Harmon, Rector, Trinity Church Washington, D.C., Diocese of Washington
  • The Rev. Martha N. Macgill, Rector, Emmanuel Episcopal Church, Cumberland, Maryland, Diocese of Maryland
  • The Rt. Rev. Dean E. Wolfe, IX Bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Kansas and Vice-President of the House of Bishops of the Episcopal Church

Click here to learn more about the candidates.

There will then be a brief period (until February 3) for people to be nominated by petition and, after a thorough vetting, one/some of them may be added to the slate. That decision rests with the Standing Committee of the Diocese.

In February, the candidates will all be in the Diocese for a week of mutual discernment. During that time they will tour the diocese and meet with the Bishop and other diocesan staff to gather more information for their discernment. In addition there will be multiple opportunities for anyone in the Diocese to meet and hear from the candidates. I encourage you to attend one of the following sessions. I will be attending the session at the African Episcopal Church of St. Thomas on Feb. 20:

Thursday, February 18 — Church of Good Samaritan, Paoli, 6–10 p.m.
Friday, February 19 — Trinity, Ambler, 6–10 p.m.
Saturday, February 20 — African Episcopal Church of St. Thomas, 8 a.m.–Noon
Saturday, February 20 — All Saints, Torresdale, 3–7 p.m.

The Diocese will choose its next Bishop at a special convention held on March 12 at the Philadelphia Cathedral. Participating in the election will be all clergy who are “resident” (officially part of) the diocese as well as convention delegates from each parish. For St. Peter’s that will be Jim Stowers, Margaret Ullmann, and Peggy Hatch. Greg Duffy serves as the alternate in the event one of the delegates cannot be present. As at a regular convention each clergy person has a vote and each parish has a vote (which the lay delegate from that parish must agree on). This Call (election) must be confirmed by a majority of the Standing Committees and Bishops of the Episcopal Church. Assuming that they confirm our call we will consecrate our new bishop on July 16, 2016 at New Covenant Church in Germantown. For more information about the process and the candidates please go to https://diopabishopsearch.com.

I ask that you hold the Diocese and the candidates for Bishop in your prayers over the next weeks and months. If you have any questions about the process I would be happy to answer or point you to the person who can answer.