News from the States

The news came through last night that the Anglican Communion is to have its second bishop who happens to have a gay partner. Canon Mary Glasspool was elected as a new suffragan bishop in Los Angeles a few months ago. What’s happened since is that the wider American church has had a chance to say yes or no to her appointment. The system in the US is that after an election, bishops with jurisdiction and diocesan standing committees are asked to confirm the election of a new bishop. There has to be a majority of both bishops and standing committees.

Our system is different in Scotland. It used to be that after an election, the College of Bishops was asked to confirm it. Now, the confirmation process takes place before the election in that the bishops agree to each of the names that go onto the shortlist, confirming that they will consecrate anyone from that list who is elected. (It is this confirmation process which our bishops have abandonned for partnered gay candidates in Scotland, preferring to declare a blanket ban on such people being considered rather than to accept due process and vote amongst themselves in regards to each candidate).

Anyway, Mary Glasspool has the requisite number of consents. She will be consecrated. There will be a fuss. The world will keep turning. She is not the first partnered lesbian bishop we are in full communion with anyway. That honour went to Eva Brunne some time ago.

I think people are weary of the fuss and generally just want to get on with being the church.

So, good wishes to the Diocese of Los Angeles and to Bishop-Elect Mary who will serve them. Peace and blessings be upon the fuss-makers.

New Lesbian Bishop

Looks like the world is about to welcome its first bishop in a mainstream denomination who happens to be a lesbian. There has just been an election in the Church of Sweden which has resulted in the election of Eva Brunne (who is in a registered partnership) to the Diocese of Stockholm.

Congratulations to Eva. No doubt prayers are in order for her and her partner and their son.

The Scottish Episcopal Church is in full communion with the Church of Sweden thanks to the Porvoo agreement.