Monday, August 20, 2018

Deadline Day for Interim Body Nominations

So the way our polity works in the Episcopal Church is that every three years the elected deputies (bishops, clergy and laity) meet in General Convention to make debate about, deliberate upon and make decisions for the whole church. Not everybody likes that process. Not everybody abides by it. But it is our process.

The 79th General Convention of the Episcopal Church met this summer in Austin, Texas and debated, deliberated and decided a whole boatload of things. And among those things was the creation of a number of task forces, commissions and groups to actually DO the work of convention between conventions. These are referred to as "Interim Bodies" ... and the deadline to nominate folks to those bodies is today ... August 20, 2018.

I'm telling you this not because I think you need a tutorial on Episcopal Polity on this Dog Day of Summer but because there is a boatload of important work to do over the next three years and the more diverse, expansive and engaged the members of these interim bodies are the better the whole church will be.

The list of all the options is available here ... but here's the list of just the task forces -- which are open to all members of the Episcopal Church (not just bishops and deputies) and will be convened and called to report back to the 80th General Convention in 2021:
Task Force to Study Environmental Racism (Resolution A011)
Task Force on Care of Creation (Resolution A013)
Task Force on Theological Education Networking (Resolution A022)
Task Force on New Funding for Clergy Formation (Resolution A027)
Task Force on Congregational Redevelopment (Resolution A032)
Task Force on Safe Church Training (Resolution A048)
Task Force on Theology of Social Justice Advocacy (Resolution A056)
Task Force on Theology of Money (Resolution A061)
Task Force on Liturgical & Prayer Book Revision (Resolution A068)
Task Force to Develop Model Sexual Harassment Policies (Resolution A109)
Task Force to Assist Office of Pastoral Development (Resolution A147)
Task Force to Develop Substance Abuse Screening Process (Resolution A189)
Task Force on Communion Across Difference (Resolution A227)
Task Force on Formation & Ministry of the Baptized (Resolution C005)
Task Force to Develop Churchwide Family Leave Policies (Resolution C019)
Task Force on Ministry to Individuals with Mental Illness (Resolution C034)
Task Force to Study Sexism in The Episcopal Church (Resolution C060)
Task Force on Women, Truth, and Reconciliation (Resolution D016)
Task Force to Develop Anti-Sexism Training (Resolution (Resolution D023)
Task Force on Clergy Formation & Continuing Education (Resolution D025)
Task Force to Coordinate Ecumenical & Interreligious Work (Resolution D055)
Task Force on Dialogue with South Sudanese Anglican Diaspora (Resolution D088)
Task Force on Disability & Deaf Access (Resolution D097)
This is a very real opportunity to raise up diversity in our leadership and empower voices throughout the church to participate in the process of governance. If you -- or someone you know -- has a passion for and/or expertise in any of these important issues please prayerfully consider putting your name forward -- or urging them to -- for consideration.

Not everyone is called to this kind of work. But I do believe all members of the church are called to be part of its ongoing transformation. Some are called to do that work through the institutional structures. Some are called to do that work by challenging the institution from outside those structures. And some folks will find themselves called to do variations on those binaries at different times and on different issues and in different ways. But it's all the same work.

Think about it. Pray about it.

Here's the link to the nomination form.

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