The Joint Nominating Committee for the Election of the Presiding Bishop met recently in New Jersey to organize itself to begin its work in preparation for the next General Convention.
There are nine bishops, nine priests, and nine lay people on the committee, elected at the Minneapolis General Convention last summer, representing the nine regional provinces of the church. Two youth appointed by the president of the House of Deputies will also join the committee this time.
The committee spent two days designing a process that will in the next two years result in a list of at least three candidates for the office of the presiding bishop, primate and chief pastor of the Episcopal Church. The House of Bishops will elect the successor to Presiding Bishop Frank T. Griswold at the General Convention in 2006 in Columbus. The choice must be confirmed by the House of Deputies.
The committee chose Bishop Peter James Lee of Virginia and Diane Pollard of New York as co-chairs and the Rev. Ann Fontaine of Wyoming and Bishop Skip Adams of Central New York as chaplains. The Rev. Thomas Brown of Vermont will serve as secretary to the committee.
“In sessions marked by a spirit of candor, openness and consensus building, this highly diverse body developed a plan of reflection and action for the two years of work before them,” according to a news release from the committee. Because of the “confidential and often sensitive nature of much of their work, the committee developed group norms to aid in the development of a community of mutuality and trust.”