The shadow dioceses - those entities created by the Presiding Bishop's office for litigation (or as they are referred to here at General Convention rather euphemistically as "renewing dioceses") - will be making a presentation in the press room and going out as a live webcast. It's all supposed to begin at 4:15 p.m. (now delayed due to technical difficulties). Apparently, the PB's deputized bishops will be holding court. We're told they won't take questions, thought, that it's just "a conversation." Exactly who they are having a conversation with when they are sitting in front of the press is not exactly clear.
I assume, then, we'll hear from representatives from the shadow dioceses of Ft. Worth, Pittsburgh, San Joaquin, and Quincy. Stay tuned!
While we wait - the technical difficulties continue - here's Peter Frampton for your listening pleasure:
Looks like they should be underway soon. Old friend Jim Simons is here representing the "renewing" diocese of Pittsburgh. There appears to be one bishop and one non-bishop representing each entity.
They are now introducing themselves, Bishop Johnson and Jim Simons for Pittsburgh, Tobin Lee Miracle and Bishop Buchanan for Quincy, Jan Dunlap and Bishop Lamp represent San Joaquin, and Bishop Gulick and David Madison and Katie Sherrod for Ft. Worth.
They are talking about how welcomed they feel at General Convention and the absolutely joy that has come over their diocese - oh, there's some anger - but there's just so much joy now. It's all energetic and inspiring. Ah.
Jim Simons was moved that another deputy told him that he needs him in the church.
Small is beautiful, says the bishop representing Quincy, though the lay representative says the experience has been shattering. Bishop Lamp has ordained a woman in Fresno. It's clear this is a small remnant that did not want to separate from The Episcopal Church, though they are very small groups so it's not clear why they believe they can be viable when the overwhelming majorities of the laity and clergy voted to separate. It seems clear that they believe that if they are more "inclusive" they will grow. They talk of being liberated and it's so exciting, but their faces don't seem to match their words, except perhaps Katie Sherrod who is quite enthusiastic. But the bishop then explains says that most of their clergy are retirement age. No one has mentioned the litigation yet.
They do continue to use the phrase "faith communities" instead of congregations or churches, perhaps because some don't have buildings. The bishop representing Pittsburgh says that they do have their buildings and are building an infrastructure. Jim Simons reminds everyone that since the provisional bishop joined them, the Steelers won the Super Bowl and the Penguins won the Stanley Cup, if only someone could do something about the Pirates.
Lots of thanks being given for the financial support from The Episcopal Church and for the support from the Presiding Bishop's chancellor. But nothing about the litigation or the depositions.
And that's that. One side of the press room applauded at the end.