Seeking God for Vision and Guidance
“In their hearts human beings plan their course, but the Lord establishes their steps”
The election of a Bishop is a process of spiritual discernment within community that is grounded in relationship with Christ, is inspired and guided by the Holy Spirit, and is accountable to God and the Church. As Bishop Smith recently observed, ‘We are one in the Spirit, one in the Lord and that is one of the gifts that this diocese offers to the bishop coadjutor we will elect next April’.
The ‘Electing Convention’ for the Diocese of Southwest Florida which will be held on April 2, 2022 will be one of the final steps in this discernment process. This special Convention will deal with only one (1) matter: choosing the next Bishop to lead our Diocese as we continue to shape our life together in mission and ministry. Information on the processes that will govern the election are set by the Constitution and Canons of the Episcopal Church as well as by our own Diocesan Constitution and Canons.
Article XVIII states, ‘The election of a Bishop shall be made in an Annual Convention, or in a Special Convention called for that purpose. The vote, by secret ballot, of a majority of the Clergy and of the Lay Members of the Convention, voting separately and concurrently shall be necessary for the election of a Bishop.
Please join us regularly in seeking God’s direction by affirming the Diocese of Southwest Florida’s Prayer for the Election of a Bishop:
Gracious God, as we walk by faith the shared journey of choosing a bishop for the Diocese of Southwest Florida, nurture within us discerning hearts and minds hopeful for possibilities yet to be revealed. Send to us a caring leader, we pray, who will uniquely delight in the abundant gifts of our diocese, and the beauty of this land, which so richly reflect your unity in diversity. Equip our human eyes and ears with divine recognition for the chief pastor of our diocese whom you have chosen to lead us in the ever-unfolding mission of your Church, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.