Saturday, July 2, 2011

Nominations for Bishop Suffragan in the Diocese of Virginia now open

This announcement came via email yesterday, and I commend it to your careful consideration. The election of our Bishop Suffragan will be next April to replace David Jones who is retiring.

Bishops suffragan have the sacramental authority of bishops and sit in the House of Bishops with other bishops. But their administrative authority is at the discretion of the diocesan bishop (Shannon Johnston). Basically, a Bishop Suffragan is an assistant bishop.

The duties of our new suffragan develop are in a profile of the diocese (noted below in one of the links). The duties were written by Bishop Johnston, and those duties are:

Our Bishop Suffragan will be an integral part of the team of bishops who lead our diocese, a team led by our Diocesan Bishop Shannon Johnston, who has prepared this job description for our new Bishop Suffragan: 

  •  The Bishop Suffragan will support and serve the diocese and its ministry priorities by providing oversight for a number of specific ministries as assigned by the diocesan bishop. 

  • The Bishop Suffragan will be responsible for new and continuing congregations (including oversight of both continuing congregations and, should the Diocese of Virginia prevail in the property litigation, the discernment process for use of church properties recovered for the mission of The Episcopal Church at the conclusion of the current litigation), overseeing the work of the Commission on Congregational Missions to provide direction, support and guidance to mission churches. 

  • He or she will oversee our efforts in multicultural ministry with the Diocese of Virginia’s non- English speaking congregations, which currently include four Spanish-speaking missions, two Spanish-speaking worship services, two Sudanese language worship services, two Korean missions, and one Vietnamese mission. The Bishop Suffragan will work to expand the ministries and create new ministries to serve the whole diocese. 

  • The Bishop Suffragan will support the Diocesan Bishop in the mission priority for youth and young adult ministries, including the exercise of oversight of college chaplaincies and the ongoing creation of new ministries serving young adults. 

  •  The Bishop Suffragan will maintain a full schedule of parish visitation and provide regular Episcopal oversight and pastoral support for clergy, in addition to other duties as assigned.

The announcement from the Nominating Committee is below, including to a profile of the diocese:

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July 1, 2011

Nominations are open! The Nominating Committee for the next Bishop Suffragan invites your suggestions of names for consideration from July 1-31, 2011. The Committee seeks a comprehensive field of qualified persons from the Episcopal clergy; therefore, we desire that the list will include many women, African-Americans and others from minority groups. 

Please keep in mind the following:
  • All nominations will be kept strictly confidential and submitted directly to the Nominating Committee.
  • Nominators must have the consent of the potential nominee in order to submit a nomination.
  • If you have any trouble with the nominating process, please contact the Nominating Committee at
  • Those whose names are suggested will be asked to submit a résumé (or curriculum vitæ), their current Office of Transition Ministry (OTM) portfolio, answers to essay questions provided by the Committee, the references of three people and the names of the bishops under which they have served. The Committee will review this information with strict confidentiality.
We wish to thank the almost 1,100 respondents to the survey of the Diocese, which was created and analyzed pro bono by the president and CEO of Customer Care Measurement and Consulting, Scott M. Broetzmann, a member of St. Paul's Church, Alexandria. The responses were sufficient to provide relatively precise data for creating the profile. View the profile online.

An Executive Summary of the survey results is also available for viewing.

Representatives of the Nominating Committee interviewed Bishop Johnston and Bishop Jones as well as the staff of the Mayo Memorial Church House. Data from these interviews will inform our interviews with potential nominees, and provide a sense of the scope of the next Bishop Suffragan's ministry.

Please take note of the following important dates:
  • The Nominating Committee will receive names for consideration July 1-31, 2011.
  • The Nominating Committee will present a slate of not fewer than four nor more than six nominees on February 3, 2012.
  • The Transition Committee will host a series of walkabouts for the nominees March 19-24, 2012.
  • The Diocese of Virginia will elect a new Bishop Suffragan on April 21, 2012.
  • The consecration will occur on July 28, 2012.

Please visit for more information and future updates. As always, please keep the Diocese and all those involved in the nominating process in your thoughts and prayers. 


The Members of the Nominating Committee

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