(Living Church) Episcopal Bishop of Long Island argues for Unicameral General Convention

Posted by Kendall Harmon

To all involved in the mission and ministry of the church today, it is clear that this system is failing us, failing the mission of the church. The reasons why are many. It is too expensive. There are too many people involved and invested in the power that comes from deep and cumbersome organization that has become increasingly bureaucratic. Even among much larger denominations that gather in convention-style deliberation, the General Convention of the Episcopal Church is the largest gathering by far and the most costly. General Convention can no longer claim to be the church in council in its ancient and ecclesial form when it looks and acts more like the national conventions of political parties. And for all of this expense, time, and seemingly necessary inclusion, we accomplish very little in the way of sustainable mission strategies and program.

As a bishop of the church I believe it is time to declare that William White is Dead. We minister in a very different environment from that of William White, in which the pace of change calls for a nimble church able to easily adapt....

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)General Convention TEC Bishops

3 Comments
Posted May 1, 2012 at 3:52 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]



1. c.r.seitz wrote:

There are things in here that don’t make sense (Executive Council with role as co-chair at GC) but this is surely correct: “General Convention can no longer claim to be the church in council in its ancient and ecclesial form when it looks and acts more like the national conventions of political parties.”

An ancient and ecclesial council of course only met to deal with heresy. That word now only applies to any form of traditional faith and practice.

May 1, 5:09 pm | [comment link]
2. samh wrote:

There are so many things wrong with the leadership, structure and governance of TEC, that this bishop’s suggestion will merely exacerbate all of the underlying problems. Reducing the number of representatives is not going to make this organization less political! It will merely provide an opportunity for existing leaders to consolidate power.

Bishops and priests aren’t better or more valuable than lay people, but they do have a particular and historic call to governing the church. I don’t think a unicameral GC is a good solution to the manifold problems present.

May 2, 7:03 am | [comment link]
3. dwstroudmd+ wrote:

Ah, but unicameral should be easier to control than bicameral from either Kate or Bonnie’s POV.  And I am sure that they each think their camera should be the one taking the snapshot!

May 2, 3:29 pm | [comment link]
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