"The Episcopal Summit"
The Rev. Stephen E. Moore
Clergy Deputy to General Convention
A chum of mine wrote to an on-line e-mail group of which I am a member: "The Skagit Valley Herald carried a story about the Episcopal Summit (sic) today; oddly the Vicar's name was not mentioned." Well, I would hope not!
Today at GC77 we talked about the budget, and talked, and talked, and talked. As any seasoned deputy could have predicted, we wasted another hour on motions to amend, all of which were defeated, and adopted the budget as presented.
The House of Deputies elected Byron Rushing to be vice president for the next three years. Byron is a long-serving deputy from the Diocese of Massachusetts (since 1973) and a long-serving member of the Massachusetts House of Representatives (since 1983) where he serves as Assistant Majority Leader. He has a modest acquaintance with parliamentary processes.
At some point in the day, someone noticed that the deputies from the Diocese of South Carolina weren't there. Apparently, Bishop Mark Lawrence and three quarters of his lay and clergy deputies left the convention to protest the approval of same-sex blessings and the inclusion of transgendered persons in the church's civil rights canon. In a statement posted on their diocesan website, they insisted that they were not leaving the Episcopal Church. One prays that they are not.
There was some thought of holding a special session of the House of Deputies this evening due to the number of resolutions yet to be addressed but we promised the Secretary of Convention that we would do our work assiduously tomorrow, the last day of convention, which begins at eight in the morning. May we be true to our word!
The Moores took supper at the Saint Elmo Steakhouse with Arlene Ullman, the Director of Vocations in the Diocese of Oregon who also works in the Secretariat of the House of Bishops. At the same location since 1902, there are photographs on the walls of the many celebrities who have eaten there. If it was good enough for Bette Midler, it should be good enough for us. The meal was excellent and the wine list impressive. The bar was loud but the dining room more sedate. We didn't try their signature shrimp cocktail in fresh horseradish sauce because shrimp should not be eaten farther than they can swim from a body of salt water.
P.S. I am taller than fellow-deputy Hisako Beasley. Lots taller.