Prof. Ian Douglas elected in Connecticut
Ian Douglas, Angus Dun Professor of Mission and World Christianity at the Episcopal Divinity School, member of Executive Council, currently clergy member of the Anglican Consultative Council, and a great deal more, has just been elected bishop of Connecticut. He was elected on the second ballot. This is very good news indeed.
In a field of fine candidates the diocese chose a person solidly grounded in the notion that mission is ONE (the position of the Domestic and Foreign Missionary Society at its formation) and that our concerns for mission are to live into God's mission, always more expansive, inclusive and engaging than any mission based on this or that theology of mission. His election to leadership in arguably the mother ship of the fleet that makes up The Episcopal Church is a gift both to Connecticut, to the Episcopal Church and to the Communion.
At the last Executive Council meeting in Memphis Ian's work on the ACC and with the Anglican Communion was particularly recognized by his colleague on the ACC, Ms Josephine Hicks. In a letter to the Council reporting on the ACC meeting she described in detail his deep influence on the ACC and its work and gave thanks for his steady presence. We were none of us surprised. It was our Ian she described.
When a friend becomes bishop there is always the mixed sense of joy and sadness. I'm still old school enough to where he now becomes Bishop Ian, mostly. He will be led to places he does not wish to go and to suffer things he does not wish to suffer. He will also have the joy of knowing that he comes to Connecticut with their strong approval and desire to have him. Still, there will continue to be times when, in the late hours, it will be Ian, and we will dream together about things Anglican and Episcopalian, about boats and travel, and about Haiti, a place close to our hearts and minds always.
But meanwhile, this is wonderful news for The Episcopal Church.