There is no blog entry over in Realignment City, aka Stand Firm, on the election of bishop in the Diocese of Utah save this one: Utah’s Bishop Election—a man who unrepentantly engages in sex acts with other men on the ballot. That particularly snotty little headline has not been supplanted by anything like one that might read: Utah holds election, new bishop elected in two ballots.
Well, that's not news, and it certainly is not angry news. It would have been just as true if any of the candidates other than Canon Scott Hayashi had been elected. It would have been true if Canon Michael Barlowe had won. But then it would of course have been news, bad for some good for others.
But the really really good news goes unmentioned. We have the means to elect bishops from among us and the process works and we live with the results. So we meet in diocesan convention and we elect. And we have every hope that it is God working in us that is finally seen to be of good effect in the results.
Now to be fair, very few folk in the progressive crowd were given to making remarks AFTER the fact of election. But, as far as I know, none of them began with the sort of headlines before hand that we find over in Realignment City.
Somehow I find the news in Utah rather affirming of the health of the Church. Four good candidates stood for election, one was elected, there were no riots in the streets or suggestions of rigged elections, no voter fraud. Whatever the tensions (if there were any) because of there being a gay-in-a-committed-relationship as a candidate, those did not seem to overwhelm the electors.
It was, in other words, an election just like the ones in Los Angeles and other places before it and just like ones to follow. People are nominated, someone is elected, everyone gives thanks to God for yet another ministry underway, and everyone goes home. Some are disappointed and others overjoyed. It is life in the Church and all quite ordinary and unnewsworthy outside a small circle of friends. It is remarkably democratic as Church appointment / election goes.
It is not over yet, of course, for Canon Hayashi needs the consent of the bishops and Standing Committees. That's part of the process.
I wish him well.