From the Western Jurisdiction Committee on Episcopacy
It is almost time for the next round of episcopal elections. In our jurisdiction, we have two bishops retiring, so we expect to elect two new bishops. However, decisions that will be made at General Conference could decrease that number.
Based on our experience and feedback received from the episcopal election process in 2022, the process will be different this time. The time frames will also be much shorter, due to the scheduling of annual conferences the month before jurisdictional conference. We want to maintain a value of wide invitation, but since there is less time for jurisdictional delegations to engage and vet potential candidates, we are asking annual conferences and caucus groups to engage in a robust communal discernment process by the end of June.
Each annual conference is invited to nominate up to two people who meet the basic qualifications for a bishop as described in Book of Discipline Paragraphs 401, 405, and 414. We encourage conferences to consider a broad range of potential nominees. Each conference has its own rules about how potential candidates are nominated. We encourage conferences to ask potential candidates to use the profile form that will be available on the WJ website, then make these profiles available to annual conference members in advance of your conference session. Regardless of whether that option is exercised, the conference secretary should submit profile forms from those nominated by the conference as soon as possible after your conference session, but no later than June 30. All conference-nominated candidates will have their profiles posted on the WJ website by July 2.
Nominations may also be made from the floor at the beginning of the Jurisdictional Conference session. This option is available to anyone, but especially to those endorsed by racial/ethnic caucus groups. Nominees will be asked to submit the same profile form for distribution to WJ delegates.
If you have questions, please contact Committee on Episcopacy chair Dan Hurlburt (). We look forward to joining together in a time of prayerful discernment as we choose the next group of episcopal leaders for our jurisdiction.