6 things I'd hope for in a new bishop

There is a sifting process going on at the moment by the Prepartory Committee for the Episcopal election in this diocese. We must all wish the Committee well and keep them in our prayers.

Here are five things I would hope for in a new bishop

  1. Sense of humour
  2. Able to preach and represent the church well, in both lowly places and in grand places
  3. Unafraid of decision making
  4. Good theological education (which means the equivalent of a 3 or 4 year full time theology degree in my book)
  5. Ability to say “no” with kindness
  6. Ability to say “yes” with enthusiasm

What would you hope for?


  1. Calum says

    No 7: ability to count up to 6. 🙂

  2. Did I say five? Hmm.

  3. A love of Cal Mac ferries
    The ability to drive long distances on terrible wee roads
    A facility with ICT to cut down on the above

  4. Rosemary Hannah says

    All of Kelvins list – plus
    an ability to see and interact with the actual person before them
    an ability to still be learning

  5. I don’t think the Preparatory Committee would disagree with you on any of the seven!

  6. Peter says

    Chris – what a waste to have the Bish of G&G loving Calmac and driving on wee roads! Now, if you launch a blog on what we want for A&TI ….

  7. Ritualist Robert says

    All of the above, plus a true love for the clergy and people among whom God has placed him/her

  8. Nice, big boobies.

  9. Oh oh oh, I know the very person…!

  10. Hi Kelvin!

    There are 5 things I hope for in a bishop, indeed 6 things which are good…

    Good for starters:

    Here is a trustworthy saying: If anyone sets his heart on being [a bishop], he desires a noble task. Now [the bishop] must be above reproach, the husband of but one wife, temperate, self-controlled, respectable, hospitable, able to teach, not given to drunkenness, not violent but gentle, not quarrelsome, not a lover of money. He must manage his own family well and see that his children obey him with proper respect. (If anyone does not know how to manage his own family, how can he take care of God’s church?) He must not be a recent convert, or he may become conceited and fall under the same judgment as the devil. He must also have a good reputation with outsiders, so that he will not fall into disgrace and into the devil’s trap.

    1 Timothy 3

    Often “GSOH” becomes more important than sincerity these days, but I’d rather have the latter than the former any day in someone called to lead the church. His job is not really to provide levity.

    It’s interesting how Paul encourages the man in his personal conduct, also as an indicator of his worthiness for the position, rather than his education or leadership experience. I don’t disagree that these things can be valuable, but certainly the biblical model is that a person shows integrity in small things before being given responsibility in large things. Therein lies the proof that they understand what they have learned.

    Able to teach implies that he understands what he believes. If only theology degrees could deliver that assurance! Knowledge, yes, but wisdom more.

    And of course, evidence of the fruit of the spirit would be vital…otherwise who can say what spirit works within him? It would be good to know that he was a Christian, and not just a clever manager!

    Hope all is well with you and your flock!


  11. fondness for Pink Candles :-).

  12. Actually, Beat, I would hope for a bishop to have a good sense of humour for her own benefit, not my own.

  13. The ability to say to clergy –
    You have been too long in this place, you must move.
    You are not the right person for this charge, let’s see where else we can put you.
    It is not healthy for an NSM/retired priest to hang around one congregation too long – you’ve been there 2 years, let’s see where else you might help.

  14. Discernment of spirits, courage to follow where the Spirit leads, and persuasiveness to bring the other Bishops along.

  15. Peter, everyone knows I live in the boondocks. This was a sine qua non for my choice. These city types have other ways!

  16. Inclusive, (Father), pastoral (Son), and ready to throw away the rule book (Holy Spirit).

  17. Rosemary says

    Honestly? I’d hate anybody whose children obeyed them.

  18. I think Ruth has been in her present post far too long.
    My application form is in the post.

  19. Oh no you don’t!

  20. Gordon Aitken says

    1. Ability to handle both sword & pistol.

    2. Ability to take a joke & to make a good joke.

    3. Not to be hysterical.

    4. a sense of irreverence.

    5. Not to be awed by Canterbury.


  1. […] Kelvin has been saying what he wants in a new bishop. You can add to the list here.  Of course we are very happy with the one we’ve got. (If you’re reading this Bishop […]

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