Saturday, June 27, 2015

An Alternate View: Fantastic History Made in The Episcopal Church Today at #GC78

That word describes today the best! Hope, happiness, excitement, friendship, history, persistence, LOVE, and WOW!
Bishop Michael Curry has been elected as our 27th Presiding Bishop of The Episcopal Church! Excellent ENS (Episcopal News Service) articles HERE

Today was INCREDIBLY exciting! I found myself giving a play-by-play of the activity in the House of Deputies as we went back and forth from resolutions, consent calendar, and presiding bishop election procedures. 

To see the tweets I sent out today, click HERE. It gets pretty exciting in the middle! :-)

Here is some video from when Bishop Curry and his family arrived at the House of Deputies after the election. Full video can be found on the General Convention website.

A little more video from the singing that spontaneously broke out when he was announced at the podium by Katharine Jefferts Schori.

My day:
- Legislative hearing on Prayer Book, Liturgy, and Music Commission resolutions A169, C010, and C023. Some very heated debate on both sides of the "Open Table" resolution and its amendments.
- Here's my view as the lovely Native American (Ute Indian I think) music is being played as a meditation. It is so lovely, I hope you've gotten a chance to hear the service.

- The bishops were assembled into St. Mark's Cathedral after worship and began the election process with prayer around 11:30

- I moved to the House of Deputies into the Alternate section and began in legislative session

- I answered questions from blog, Facebook, and Twitter followers about the election process. It's been super nice to know that I can actually provide useful information and that the world of Episcopal social media was also paying attention! I have been a veritable "tweetstorm" here and it has been appreciated by several dioceses, priests, inquirers, Episcopal staff, and organizations, and many more. I can say that it feels really great to be able to speak in this language! :-) I'm blessed and quite grateful for the opportunity!

- Play-by-play coverage of the election of the 27th Presiding Bishop of The Episcopal Church. It was beyond words. What an historic session and whole day! The collective tension was incredible and the HOD reached a point of defiance. NO ONE wanted to leave the room to wait on the delegation from the House of Bishops to arrive. A while later, when 
Committee 19 was still deliberating, we were told to break for lunch, and then to break, and then recess, and then to stand at ease. The voice of the people spoke over and the chair of the House wasn't too excited about it, but it was handled well, everyone stayed, and we were in it all together. 
- I attended the first Press conference with PB-elect, Michael Curry in the Canyon Room at the Hilton. It lasted about 35 minutes and can be found at the Media Hub
- Had coffee with Barry, the runner of @iamepiscopalian and many other elements of TEC social media. SUCH a nice person!

- FABULOUS reception for Episcopal Relief and Development for their 75th anniversary! They gave us a gigantic party with wine, delicious foods, a stellar band, happiness, free pins and ---> CHOCOLATE <---
I'm exhausted after all of this, but as I was walking home.....wait I mean THE SHERATON. As I was walking back to the Sheraton, I thought about all that transpired today, Day # 3 of the General Convention. The first African-American presiding bishop of The Episcopal Church was elected in vast majority on first ballot by both the HOB and the HOD following the first woman presiding bishop. It's the first time two consecutive bishops were elected from the same bishop's class. 
That's simply pure awesomeness. 
I'm so honored to be a part of this historic day in our church!!!
I was so moved by the applause when presiding bishop-elect Curry and his family walked into the House with his family. I was tearing up when the room broke out singing and again when the bishops cheered to show their supportive presence in the back of the House. As I wrote yesterday, there is such love here among this gathering. As Bishop Curry said in his press conference "The truth is: we all come from the same source. We are all brothers and sisters". He spoke a great deal about relationships and emerging connections. He said that when Katharine Jefferts Schori was elected, he said that he (and many) had felt "a movement of the Holy Spirit". He said the he felt that today. I also felt that and I think that most people here today did as well. 
Plenty has been said in the past several days at #GC78 about being a people of love and being connected and supportive, both of humanity and being stewards of God's creation. Today, Bishop Curry said "we are in the business of true love". I believe this and that a part of our job is to reach our neighbor, to be a proactive presence in forming relationships of peace. 
I looked up from my walk and saw this gorgeous view. I had almost forgotten we are surrounded by beautiful mountains, the Wasatch Range. When we're mostly inside buildings and solving the world's issues while walking between said buildings, we sometimes lose site of the actual world around our world. People here are right, we need a shot in the arm of evangelism, of proactiveness (I'm making that a new word), and of ZEST. I have great hope for the coming years in TEC. I hope the Anglican Communion itself will also see this as a movement of hope! I hope we stop to look up and decide to join the beauty of risk, of relationship, and of the movement of the Holy Spirit!
So I made it to my home-away-from-home and am about to happily take a cold shower and eat chocolate! The bar I got is organic, fairly-traded milk chocolate with a hint of hazelnut. I tweeted so much today that I daresay I deserve it :-)
Rest well ye people!
Thank you for reading! Stay tuned,
PS - This evening's moon over Salt Lake City!

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