Tuesday, November 2, 2010

The right sequence

Restraint is always difficult for an extrovert, and I am an ENTP on the MBTI (Myers-Briggs Type Indicator). Much is being posted on the HoBD (House of Bishops/Deputies) List and in blogs about the consent process for the Bishop-Elect of the Episcopal Diocese of Springfield, the Rev. Daniel H. Martins. I would love to get my two cents in, but recognize that my first duty is to my colleagues on the Standing Committee of the Diocese of Colorado, which will be voting at our mid-November meeting on Martins.
Our Standing Committee has worked very intentionally for the past year plus on our collegiality – how we work together. We started the process several years ago by focusing our annual retreat on understanding our role and responsibilities. We had frank conversations with our bishop and one another over perceptions of clergy behavior and attitudes and those of laity. We voiced our apprehensions and vowed to stay connected to one another even as we strove to work out the kinks in our relationships.
We haven’t always been productive in our talks, but we have agreed to stay at the table and engaged with one another. It is a process, one to which we are all committed, even when it feels like we haven’t made much progress from the last time we met.
So, I am not going to voice any opinions about Martins until after I’ve voiced them in the Standing Committee meeting, because that honors the right sequence of events.

12 comments:

PseudoPiskie said...

Wise IMO. I'm curious to hear what our SC thinks and will ask a couple of individuals at convention this weekend. Since I'm running for Diocesan Council and GC deputy - tho I have little chance of either - I'm keeping a low profile until Saturday.

I'm very conflicted about consenting to Dan+. I wish we could hear from people in his parish. What does he preach? Do they pray for the PB? He has a questionable track record but he says and some I trust believe he wants to stay in TEC. Perhaps consent then watch closely?

LELANDA LEE said...

Shel,

Thanks for throwing your name into the hat. We can always use good thinkers on our leadership councils.

There will always be pros and cons in every consent discussion. None of our leaders and proposed leaders are perfect, and they don't always interpret the constitution and canons in the same way. I really believe that it's important to honor the process of bishop consents and set our own politics aside.

For me, a question that I ask myself is, "Can I respect the integrity of the candidate" versus "Can I respect the positions that the candidate endorses."

Lelanda

Craig Uffman said...

I served as Bp-elect Dan's curate for over two years in Northern Indiana. I can report to you that he preaches the gospel week after week, sticking faithfully to the lectionary, and, as he often referred to it, to the "canon within the canon" which is the window into the lectionary given by the liturgical calendar. Each week he approaches the pulpit with fear and trembling and a large dose of humility and humor and does his best to open up the Scriptures, trusting the Household of God to wrestle together with their implications as a people called to discern together. With regard to prayers, he faithfully prayed with me day after day for the Presiding Bishop and the Archbishop of Canterbury, and ensured that our congregation did the same during the Eucharist when the prayers of the people called for it. Bp-elect Martins loves the Episcopal Church and treasures our traditions and our vocation within the Church catholic. He is a complex man, deeply spiritual, upon whom we can count to wrestle with issues, contributing his thought, while working always to hold God's people together, for he truly believes we are called to be one body because we share one cup.

Craig Uffman
Rector, St. Thomas' Church
Diocese of Rochester

LELANDA LEE said...

Cliff,

Thank you for taking the time to comment and share your insights into Dan Martins+. It is always good to hear first hand comments versus rumors and gossip, which is abhorrent to the spirit of all our deliberations.

Blessings,

Lelanda

Carol said...

My name is Carol Bianchini and I have worked for St. Anne's Church for 15 + years. I have been a member for 20 + years. Working with Father Dan has been a wonderful experience. I take my commitment to Christ very seriously. I love being a Christian and the way I grow in my faith is to attend Holy Eucharist. I can honestly say in the 3 1/2 years that Father Dan has been at St. Anne's you can count on one hand the Sunday's I've missed. That being said, I have heard Father Dan pray for the Presiding Bishop weekly. Father Dan's prayer life is one to be admired. I've never seen someone who prays for others as much as this man of God! We should all be so fortunate to pray as he does!

Carol said...

I forgot to mention, Father Dan preaches the Gospel! He takes to word of God and brings it to us the faith community! I love his sermons! You should check them out sometimes!

Marion Carpenter said...

I was ordained to the Diaconate under Father Dan. I have been a member of Anne’s’ since 1998 and been a Deacon for three years. First, I love Father Dan's sermons they are about the Gospel reading. I usually pre-read his sermons so I know what part of the Gospel I need emphasize. Under Father Dan I have grown spiritually and closer to Jesus. The Deacons of Springfield will have a Bishop that understands the importance of the Diaconate. Father Dan is a guru of the BCP, which I now appreciate. Springfield will get a great Bishop and St Anne’s will lose a wonderful Rector.

Pam said...

I have been Fr. Dan Martins’ Senior Warden for nearly three years. I have been very impressed with his love and devotion to our Lord Jesus Christ and his expression of this love in his sermons and teachings. His sermons are gospel based, and it is obvious the time and prayer he gives to the preparation of these sermons. He does include Presiding Bishop in the prayers of the people. Fr. Dan is devoted to the Episcopal Church and no one should have concerns over his having any desire to leave this church. The Diocese of Springfield will be extremely fortunate to have him as their bishop.

deb said...

As a parishioner for over 12 years, I can say that it was a welcome relief to have someone who took his calling very serious. Fr Dan preaches from his heart, his sermons are gospel based, and very relevant to today's society. He does include the PB in the prayers of the people. It has been a refreshing 3 plus years since Fr Dan came to St Annes, reminding the parishioners that Sundays are for worship not church politics. Fr Dan embraces the Episcopal life as noted in his Daily Offices, Wednesday services, Sunday services, holy day services.

Petro said...

I am an active member of St.Anne's Episcopal Church, Warsaw, IN. Considering throughout the last 12 years we have had three Rectors, two Assistant to the Rector, a Priest-in-Charge, and two Deacons(please note some of these people have worn multiple hats during their tenure), I believe we have been enriched by all of our revolving clergy and our membership has fared well.
That stated I weekly attend two Christian Formations led by Bishop Elect Martins. Reflections, a midweek bible study, engaged in unpacking the Sunday Lectionary and Sunday Morning Adult Formation devoted entirely to the teachings and individual pages of the BCP. Literally we began at the cover of this most cherished field guide.
Father Dan leads these Christian education assemblies with a prayerful heart and a zeal for the Gospel. Sadly, when you question his prayer integrity, you also grieve and insult us, the parishioners of St.Anne's. Of course we pray for the PB. Our Sunday prayers are a lengthy, beautiful litany of whom and what God has laid on our hearts appropriately designated within the rubric.
We grow weary defending our commitment to TEC. Please consider sparing us your continual scrutiny so that our church family may continue to grow in the Spirit listening to the Voice that has called us to serve.

d.ekholm said...

My husband and I have attended St. Anne's for over 40 years. Father Dan is probably one of our best priests. He is very devout in his Christian belief, always preaches on the Gospel and has encouraged us all to deeper learning of the Bible and our prayer book.

LELANDA LEE said...

Thank you to all who have commented here. It is always a good thing to hear different voices, especially when the sentiments voiced come from such heartfelt places.

Petro, I want to point out to you that I don't think anyone is scrutinizing your congregation and that no one wants to interfere with your parish's service to our Lord. We rejoice to hear of your parish's ministry and worship and to know that our sisters and brothers in your church are such a vibrant part of the Body.

While it may feel uncomfortable and seem odd and out of context, the polity of The Episcopal Church is such that we do have a consent process for all bishops-elect. Members of diocesan standing committees and bishops with jurisdiction are required to consider and vote upon whether or not to consent to the election of bishops. And in order to vote with integrity, it is important that standing committee members and bishops satisfy themselves that they know of no impediment to consent or that they have cause not to consent.

The Rev. Dan Martins has acknowledged that he is a public person by virtue of his ministry and writings in various places, and he has undertaken to answer comments about him from standing committee members and bishops as he becomes aware of them. For that, we are all grateful, because it honors the consent process.

We all belong to The Episcopal Church, and even more importantly, we all belong to the Body of Christ. In the Body, we are one and are called to love one another no matter our theological or political differences. For that, we can all rejoice forever and ever.

Blessings to all,

Lelanda