Bishop Coadjutor Search Process

News from the Bishop Coadjutor Search Committee

April 29, 2021

The committee selected to search for the next Bishop of The Anglican Diocese of South Carolina met in an overnight retreat at St. Christopher Camp and Conference Center Sunday evening, April 18 and Monday April 19.

We began and ended our overnight steeped in prayer and all had a truly blessed time watching in awe as the power of the Holy Spirit moved, molded and shaped our thoughts and directed our hearts. This committee remains convinced that our Lord has already chosen our next bishop and that we, on the committee, are merely affirming God’s choice.

You may remember that according to our timeline we offered a very long inquiry period in which the entire Anglican Diocese of South Carolina was invited to suggest a priest for consideration by the committee. We received a large number of suggested names during this first phase which concluded on April 1.

The majority of those suggestions ended in the suggested priest deciding themselves not to go any further in the process. For those remaining, we divided the names amongst us and are now checking references and setting up appointments for interviews via Zoom. All of the remaining nominees will be interviewed by the committee as a whole on Zoom and also every remaining nominee will be visited in their ministries by small teams of committee members. This phase of the search process is scheduled to end June 24 when the Search Committee meets as a whole to hear reports from the teams who visited the nominees.

Here’s a timeline of remaining tasks to be completed by the Bishop’s Search Committee:

April 23 –May 23 – Zoom meetings by entire search committee with every remaining suggested person.

May 24 – the Bishop’s Search Committee meets as a whole to consider a list of nominees who will move on in the process.

May 25 through June 23 – the final list of nominees will be visited in their ministry context.

June 25 – Search Committee meets to approve final list to be presented to the Standing Committee.

July 6 – The Standing Committee makes their choices as to whom will continue in the process, pending extensive background checks.

August 1 – an official list of Candidates for Bishop Coadjutor will be published with a suggested date or dates for a walkabout or for several walkabouts for diocesan delegates to meet the candidates.

Walkabouts will be held for the diocesan delegates to meet the candidates for Bishop Coadjutor. The Walkabouts will be hosted by the Search Committee.  Details about these gatherings will be announced once finalized.

September 13 – Prince George Winyah, Georgetown
September 14 – St. John’s, Florence
September 15 – Old St. Andrews, Charleston
September 16 – The Parish Church of St. Helena, Beaufort

October 16 – Ballots to be cast for Bishop Coadjutor at a special Diocesan Electing Convention.

After October 16 – ACNA College of Bishops meets to approve Diocesan selection of new Bishop.

March 12, 2022 (God willing) – Consecration of new Bishop at Diocesan Convention

Thank you so very much for your faithful prayer for this search committee. We can honestly feel your participation and the undergirding that you provide through your prayers. Please continue!

Respectfully Submitted ,

John Burwell,
Communications member of the Bishop’s Search Committee

January 26, 2021

The Bishop’s Search Committee will start soliciting names for a Bishop Coadjutor on February 1st.  Please read the Bishop Job description before filling out a Suggestion Form.

According to the protocols of the Anglican Church in North America, the selection process for a bishop has three steps, beginning with open suggestions from the laity and clergy of ACNA.

  1. The first step will be accepting all suggestions for names. Anyone inside or outside our diocese may suggest a person for consideration as a bishop coadjutor. Again, this suggestion phase begins on February 1.
  2. The Bishop’s Search Committee will then prayerfully consider every suggestion submitted. A smaller list will be selected to continue in the selection process as a “Nominee.” The Nominees will be interviewed by the Committee and after prayer and intercession a smaller list of nominees will be presented to the Standing Committee for consideration.
  3. The Standing Committee will then make the final decision as to who will become “Candidates” to be presented to the Diocese. The Special Convention Delegates will then cast their ballots, on October 16, 2021, for a Bishop Coadjutor who, after a season with Bishop Lawrence, will become the next Bishop of the Anglican Diocese of South Carolina.

The Committee encourages all members and congregations to keep praying for the process.

12/15/20: The Bishop’s Search Committee continues the process to develop a list of nominees for the Bishop Coadjutor. Though we are still on the beginning phases, we hope to present nominees to the Diocese in the summer of 2021 with the election to be held in October 2021. God willing the Consecration of a Bishop Coadjutor will be held in March of 2022.

The first week of December the committee held a daylong meeting at St. Matthias in Summerton. The Diocesan Profile, Bishop’s Job Description, and summary of a survey of the Clergy and Parish/Mission leadership were all discussed. These are scheduled to be finalized and approved by The Standing Committee the first week of January.

The committee will start soliciting names on February 1, 2021, the manner and process of sending in names will be communicated to the diocese prior to February 1st.

Prayer has been a centerpiece of the Committees work, as they sense the enormous responsibility to find and recognize the Bishop God has selected for our diocese.

Additionally, all congregations and missions should select their delegates to the Special Convention at their annual meeting this year – this is separate from delegates to the regular Diocesan Convention. The Special Convention will be held on October 16, 2021.

The Committee encourages all members and congregations to keep praying for the process.

As part of the newly formed Bishop’s Search Committee, we thank you for the opportunity to report on our initial meeting and our progress so far. The Committee, chaired by The Rev. Jason Collins of St. Paul’s, Conway, consists of lay and clergy chosen by every deanery as well as ad-hoc members of the Standing Committee. The Committee works under the direction of the Standing Committee who will be tasked with the final decision on the selection of candidates for The Bishop Coadjutor of the Anglican Diocese of South Carolina.

At the end of October, our Committee met overnight at Camp St. Christopher for an organizational meeting. We began the retreat by sharing Communion with the entire Standing Committee and we spent our first afternoon getting to know each other a little better. We held a Zoom conference call with Bishop William Murdock who has been appointed by Archbishop Beach to help shepherd us through the process and we also discussed our initial timeline of events.

After dinner we looked at what we believe are Biblical qualifications for a bishop including 1 Peter 5:2-3, 1 Timothy 3:1-7, and Titus 1:7-9. The next morning, we divided into various subcommittees (Prayer, Communications, Diocesan Profile, Bishop’s Job Profile, Hospitality and Logistics, Solicit and Receive Suggested Nominees, Walk-About) and set a timeline for our search process:

January 5, 2021
Standing Committee approves Diocesan Profile and Bishop Coadjutor Job Description

February 1, 2021
Search Committee begins receiving suggestions for candidates

April 1, 2021
Deadline to receive suggestions for candidates

Late April 2021
Search Committee retreat to review suggested names

Late April – Late May, 2021
Travel Time to Meet with Potential Nominees

June 1, 2021
Standing Committee to approve nominations

June 1 – July 30, 2021
Eight weeks for Background Checks as required by the ACNA

August 1, 2021
Publish list of nominees – 30 days prior to election as required by diocesan canons (only those candidates who pass the background checks will be published)

September 11, 2021
Walkabout(s) for diocesan delegates to meet candidates

October 16, 2021
Special Election for the Bishop Coadjutor

One point that was agreed to by all of us is that we genuinely believe that our Lord has already selected our next bishop and that our task as a diocese will be to discern whom God has already picked out for us. We believe our Bishop’s Search will narrow down the names, and we are convinced that with much prayer and petition, our diocese will indeed choose the very person God has already chosen for us. We in the Committee approach our task with excitement, fear, and trembling. We urge you to join us in daily prayer for both process and the person.

Respectfully submitted,

John Burwell and John E. Benson, Communications Committee

July 9, 2020: Bishop Lawrence Calls for a Bishop Coadjutor