Re-electing Mark Lawrence

The Rt. Rev. Edward L. Salmon had issued a letter to the clergy of South Carolina outlining the procedures to re-elect The Very Rev. Mark Lawrence as bishop of South Carolina. Lawrence failed to receive the proper consents from the Standing Committees of the other dioceses following his first election. Diocesan rules will have to be suspended in order to re-elect. The letter follows:

Dear Friends,

I have just come from a meeting of the Standing Committee where critical decisions were made toward the re-election of the Very Rev. Mark Lawrence as the XIV Bishop of South Carolina. The position of the Standing Committee was that there was an overwhelming consensus that 1) the Holy Spirit had spoken in the election of Fr. Lawrence; 2) that the Bishops and Standing Committees had intended to consent to the election even though technicalities had prevented it; 3) and that we carefully follow our own Canons in order to strongly support the election.

In order to follow our Canons, it is necessary to re-convene the Diocesan Convention of November 2006, which according to the minutes was recessed, not adjourned. This means that the delegates from the November 2006 Convention are still in place. The date for convening this Convention is June 9, 2007. At that Convention, it will be necessary to suspend Rule 21; because it would require an entirely new election process duplicating the process we used in the first election. Rule 22 gives us the authority to suspend the Rule 21 by a 2/3 vote. After its suspension, the Convention can then call for an Electing Convention. This would then require our congregations to elect new delegates for this Convention. The former Electing Convention cannot be re-convened. It was called for the purpose of electing a Bishop for the Diocese, and this work was done.

The re-convened convention of 2006 will also be asked to affirm the appointment of Wade Logan as Diocesan Chancellor as required by the Canons. Due to reasons of health, Mr. Eugene N. Zeigler has resigned as Chancellor of the Diocese. He will remain as Chancellor until the Convention approves a new Chancellor.

This Electing Convention will then be convened later in the summer of 2007 for the purpose of re-electing Fr. Lawrence. This date will be announced when the Electing Convention is created.

Following the election, the Standing Committee will implement an intensive effort to receive the consents during the 120 day period. Since a majority of Standing Committees intended to approve in the first election, the Standing Committee has a clear field in which to work.

This process will allow a consecration date to be set so that when consents are in, we may proceed to consecrate Fr. Mark Lawrence as the 14th Bishop of South Carolina.

Yours faithfully,

(The Rt. Rev.) Edward L. Salmon, Jr.

Bishop of South Carolina XIII

Read it HERE

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