Update: Jim Naughton of Episcopal Café offers good background on the new members.
Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori and President of the House of Deputies the Rev. Gay Clark Jennings have announced the 24 members of the special Task Force for Church Structural Reform.
Approved at the July General Convention 2012, Resolution C095 calls for development of a 24-member task force charged with presenting a plan to the next General Convention in 2015 “for reforming the Church’s structures, governance, and administration.”
“We are delighted at the collection of gifts that have been offered for this work, and overjoyed at the constellation assembled in this task force,” Presiding Bishop Jefferts Schori said. “We pray that God’s creative spirit will be unleashed in the midst of this work to move us into God’s future with excitement, openness, and commitment to the opportunities before us.”
“Please join us in praying for the members of the task force as they begin their work,” President Jennings said. “The Episcopal Church must restructure faithfully and thoughtfully to bring us closer to the heart of God and those we are called to serve. May the Holy Spirit lead the task force toward a new vision of our beloved church.”
The Presiding Bishop and the President of the House of Deputies reviewed over 500 applicants who were interested in serving on the Task Force.
“This work has taken several months, and we are deeply grateful for the willingness of many faithful Episcopalians to offer themselves for this work,” Presiding Bishop Jefferts Schori said.
“As we have worked together to create the structure task force, the Presiding Bishop and I have enjoyed exploring our many common hopes for the church and the vision we share for its mission and ministry,” said President Jennings. “Our work is blessed by these conversations, and we continue to be gratified by how much we enjoy working together.”
The Task Force for Church Structural Reform is composed of 24 members: four bishops; nine priests; one deacon; and ten lay people. Three are under age 30; eight in their 30s; five in their 40s; four in their 50s; and four are age 60+. Nine are people of color.
The members of the Task Force for Church Structural Reform and their dioceses are:
- The Rev. Jennifer L. Adams, Diocese of Western Michigan
- The Rev. William H. Allport II, Diocese of West Texas
- The Rev. Joseph M.C. Chambers, Diocese of Missouri
- Canon Judith G. Conley, Diocese of Arizona
- Bishop Michael Bruce Curry, Diocese of North Carolina
- Bishop C. Andrew Doyle, Diocese of Texas
- The Rev. Miguelina Espinal-Howell, Diocese of Newark
- Professor Victor A. Feliberty-Ruberte, Diocese of Puerto Rico
- The Ven. Robert Anton Franken, Diocese of Missouri
- Dr. Catherine George, Diocese of New Jersey
- Bishop Mary Gray-Reeves, Diocese of El Camino Real
- Ian L. Hallas, Diocese of Chicago
- Julia Ayala Harris, Diocese of Florida
- The Rev. Dr. Bradley S. Hauff, Diocese of Pennsylvania
- The Rev. Leng Leroy Lim, Diocese of Los Angeles
- Thomas A. Little, Esq. Diocese of Vermont
- The Rev. Canon Craig W. Loya, Diocese of Kansas
- Sarah Miller, Diocese of Alabama
- The Rev. Kevin D. Nichols, Diocese of New Hampshire
- Bishop Sean W. Rowe, Diocese of Northwestern Pennsylvania
- Margaret B. Shannon, Diocese of Texas
- T. Dennis Sullivan, Diocese of New York
- Jonathan McKenzie York, Diocese of North Carolina
- The Rev. Dr. Dwight J. Zscheile, Diocese of Minnesota
In addition, two partners from other Anglican Communion provinces have been appointed: the Very Rev. Peter Elliott of the Anglican Church of Canada, dean of the Diocese of New Westminster and rector of Christ Church Cathedral in Vancouver; and the Rev. Sathianathan Clarke, Th.D., of the Church of South India, who is the Bishop Sundo Kim Chair in World Christianity and professor of theology, culture and mission at Wesley Theological Seminary.
According to resolution C095, “The membership of the Task Force shall reflect the diversity of the Church, and shall include some persons with critical distance from the Church’s institutional leadership.”
In addition, the task force will conduct a special gathering with representation from every diocese in preparation of its final report, due by November 2014. The date and location of the special meeting will be determined later.