Nominations are now open for 28 (previously reported as 27) positions that will be filled at the 2016 Convention of the Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth in Fort Worth, Texas, on November 11 and 12.
The number of open positions is higher than usual this year for two main reasons: we will be electing deputies to General Convention, which happens only once every three years, and we will also for the first time be electing nine of the members of the Executive Council at large, in accordance with canon changes passed in 2015. Previously, members of the Executive Council were all elected at the deanery level.
The Nominations Committee earnestly seeks participation from parishioners across the spectrum of our diocese and hopes for at least two candidates per position.
Diocesan members are invited to read, pray, and discern if they know someone to nominate, or if they are called to offer themselves in nomination for any of the elected positions described below. Nominations may be made by another person with the candidate’s permission or by the candidate on their own. The deadline for online nominations is Monday, September 12, 2016.* Nominations are open for two months.
POSITIONS TO BE FILLED:
Deputies to General Convention – six lay people and six clergy. The Diocesan Convention will elect four lay deputies and two alternates as well as four clergy deputies and two alternates to send to the 2018 General Convention in Austin, Texas. Since this General Convention will be in our area, members of the diocese are encouraged to participate if at all possible in some part of General Convention; there will be numerous opportunities – whether as a deputy, liturgical minister, vendor, or one of many volunteer roles. For those interested in serving as a deputy, read more about what deputies to General Convention do and talk to people who have served previously; our deputies to the 2015 General Convention contributed to a blog about their experiences.
Members-at-Large of the Diocesan Executive Council – six lay people and three clergy. The Executive Council carries on the work of the Diocesan Convention during the rest of the year when the Convention is not in seesion. The new canons passed in 2015 made changes affecting the Executive Council, including how its members are elected. Previously, the members were elected by the deaneries; this year, under the new canons, the Convention will elect nine of the members at large, while the other five members will be elected by the deaneries – one for each deanery. The canons call for staggering members’ terms so that, normally, a third of the committee is elected each year. This will be the first year of at-large elections, however, and the entire committee will be elected in the same year. To transition into a staggered cycle, the 2015 Diocesan Convention also passed Resolution CC-3 providing for a process for the transition from deanery elections to the first at-large election. Immediately after the Convention, those elected at large to the Executive Council will meet briefly to determine which members will serve one-year, two-year, and three-year terms this time so that future elections will be staggered.
The Standing Committee – one lay and one clergy member. The Standing Committee is the council of advice for the bishop or the ecclesiastical authority of the diocese if there is no bishop. Three priests and three lay persons serve for three years each (those elected in 2016 will complete their term in 2019) with one priest and one lay member elected each year. No person may serve for more than two consecutive terms. The Standing Committee typically meets monthly. The continuing members of the Standing Committee are lay members Joel Walker and Jane Dennis and clergy members Amy Haynie and Kevin Johnson. Members whose terms are expiring are lay member Mollee Westfall (currently the secretary) and clergy member Carlye Hughes (currently the president).
Trustee for the University of the South – one lay person. Length of term is three years (October 2017-2019). Duties include attending trustee meeting in the fall at the University of the South at Sewanee, TN, which usually involves several weekdays, especially for a new trustee. There is an optional spring meeting. There may be some expenses related to this responsibility. The Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth is one of the owning dioceses of the University of the South and thus is represented at the primary Trustee meeting. Continuing trustees are Andrew Wright and Suzanne Meyers (whose term will start in October). Cynthia Hill’s term will expire in October 2017, just before next year’s Diocesan Convention, so we are electing for that position now, and the new trustee will start approximately a year from now.
Disciplinary Board – three clergy and one lay member. Two clergy members and one lay member are to be elected for three-year terms (expiring 2019). In addition, one clergy member is to be elected to a one-year term (expiring in 2017) to replace Andrew Benko, who moved. The Disciplinary Board meets as needed when called by the bishop. Continuing on the board are lay members Becky Snell and Barbara Evans-Chowning and clergy member Scot McComas. Those whose terms are expiring are Judy Cariker, Henry Penner, and John Stanley.
Nominations are open through Monday, September 12 *; use the form below to nominate yourself or someone else. After September 12 *, nominations can still be made, but the process changes – see the description below in the next section.
NOMINATIONS AFTER the Deadline
Any nominations after the closing date may be made from the floor at diocesan convention. Nominations from the floor will follow all the requirements for candidates, including sufficient copies of the nominees’ picture and biographical information for all clergy and convention delegates, plus verification of qualifications. The requirements for nominations from the floor of convention are in Canon I.126.96.36.199 “Nominations from the Floor,” which can be found in the Canons of the Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth.
In addition, the following individual positions are nominated by the bishop and confirmed by the convention.
- Diocesan Secretary and Assistant to the Secretary
- Diocesan Registrar
- Diocesan Historiographer
- Diocesan Treasurer and Assistant to the Treasurer
- Diocesan Chancellor
- Corporation Trustee
- Episcopate endowment trustee
Groups which welcome new members each year, appointed by the bishop include:
- Commission on Ministry
- Finance Committee
- Christian Formation Committee
- Diocesan Schools Commission
- Constitution and Canons Committee
If you would like to volunteer in these areas and potentially be available for a future nomination, please email the nominations committee at firstname.lastname@example.org to let them know of your interest, in case the bishop needs recommendations.
For more information on nominations, please email email@example.com.
*The deadline was originally reported incorrectly as September 11.