Rowan Williams, Jon Bruno on Glasspool consent process

Both Rowan Williams and Bishop Jon Bruno have provided food for thought following the election of Mary Douglas Glasspool, a partnered lesbian, to one of two Bishop Suffragan positions filled over the weekend in the Diocese of Los Angeles.

From the Archbishop of Canterbury:

The election of Mary Glasspool by the Diocese of Los Angeles as suffragan bishop elect raises very serious questions not just for the Episcopal Church and its place in the Anglican Communion, but for the Communion as a whole.

The process of selection however is only part complete. The election has to be confirmed, or could be rejected, by diocesan bishops and diocesan standing committees. That decision will have very important implications.

The bishops of the Communion have collectively acknowledged that a period of gracious restraint in respect of actions which are contrary to the mind of the Communion is necessary if our bonds of mutual affection are to hold.

From Bishop Bruno:

“At our last General Convention, we said we are nondiscriminatory. They just as well might have withheld their consents from me because I was a divorced man and in my case, it would have been more justified than someone withholding them from someone who has been approved through all levels of ministry and is a good and creative minister of the Gospel.”

He added: “I would remind The Episcopal Church and the House of Bishops they need to be conscientious about respecting the canons of the church and the baptismal covenant to respect the dignity of every human being.

“To not consent in this country out of fear of the reaction elsewhere in the Anglican Communion is to capitulate to titular heads.”

UPDATE: We have the following from New Hampshire Bishop Gene Robinson:

The people of the Diocese of Los Angeles have elected two

extraordinarily gifted priests to serve them as Suffragan Bishops.

They have chosen the two people who, in their minds, and with the

guidance of the Holy Spirit, are best suited for this ministry, and

one of them happens to be a lesbian. But let us be clear: it is Mary

Glasspool’s experience, skills and faith which will make her a good

bishop, and are the reason for her election. Rightly so, the people

of Los Angeles have not let current arguments over homosexuality or

threats to “unity” impair their choosing the best persons for these


This is the Church we declared at this summer’s General Convention we

would be, following God’s call to us as best we can discern it, and we

are now living into that calling. I am delighted over the elections

of Diane Bruce and Mary Glasspool and, upon consent by the wider

church, look forward to welcoming them both into the House of Bishops.

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