C043 to Include the Name Bishop Barbara Clementine Harris in the Lesser Feasts & Fasts Calendar
Resolved, the House of Deputies concurring,
That this 80th General Convention of the Episcopal Church hereby directs the inclusion the name Bishop Barbara Clementine Harris in the Lesser Feasts & Fasts Calendar of The Episcopal Church, and authorize trial use of the proper for the triennial 2023-2024 to be celebrated on March 13; and be it further
Resolved, that this 80th General Convention approve the appropriate proper to be prepared by the Standing Commission on Liturgy and Music.
The Episcopal Church publishes Lesser Feasts & Fasts, which contains feast days for the various men and women the Church wishes to honor. Bishop Harris died on March 13, 2020. While the typical process calls for such a resolution, seeking to add a name to the Calendar, be presented at two successive General Conventions, there have been exceptions to this rule. For example, the Episcopal Church added Jonathan Myrick Daniels to its Lesser Feasts and Fasts calendar of commemorations in 1994. His feast day is August 14, the day of his arrest. It seems appropriate in this case since Bishop Harris was a woman of color as well as the first woman ordained bishop, which will not change over time.
Barbara C. Harris (1930 – 2020) became the first woman to be ordained a bishop in the worldwide Anglican Communion on February 11, 1989. Her years of episcopal leadership were filled with traveling and witnessing, preaching, and teaching and administering the sacraments. A gifted storyteller known for her quick wit and raspy-voiced delivery, she was also a spirited and sought-after preacher of hymn laced, Gospel-grounded sermons, and an outspoken advocate for, in her words, "the least, the lost and the left out." With great grace, she worked tirelessly serving the people of the Episcopal Diocese of Massachusetts as their Suffragan Bishop for 13 years, until her retirement in 2002.
After her retirement, she served from 2003 until 2007 as an Assisting Bishop in the Diocese of Washington (D.C.) where she won many friends and colleagues.