Resolved, the House of _______ concurring, That the 79th General Convention urges each diocese and jurisdiction of The Episcopal Church, prior to the call for the election of its next bishop, to adopt canons addressing the following subjects:
- An outline of the procedure to be followed by the diocese in its search and election process beginning with the initial call for an election and ending with the ordination of the new bishop;
- Identify specific actions to be taken to
- Encourage a diverse applicant pool and follow a search and election process that reduces the likelihood of discrimination on the basis of race, ethnicity, or gender;
- Ensure that the process is transparent throughout the entire search and election process;
- Provide accountability for all involved in the search and election process;
- Require the collection of pertinent data for all persons being considered for nomination using the most current means available for background checks, financial information, and interviews of all bishops and transition officers having knowledge of a person being considered for nomination
Article II, Section 1 of the Constitution requires that the “Bishop or the Bishop Coadjutor shall be chosen agreeably pursuant to rules prescribed by the Convention” of that diocese. This is consistent with the polity of the Church. While it is important that the listed issues be addressed by each electing diocese or jurisdiction, the convention of each diocese has the right to define the actions needed to be taken to address these issues. It is in the interest of the Church, however, that each diocese act prior to the call for an election is made by the incumbent bishop, so this Resolution calls each diocese’s attention to the need for action and leaves to the electing diocese the ability of each individual diocese to act.
Section IV.C.4 of this report goes into additional detail on the need for background and medical screenings, and how we recommend dioceses handle and use the data obtained from those efforts.
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