Bishop Election — I have some questionsPosted: April 4, 2014
While I’ve served in three dioceses in my vocational life (Maryland, New York, and Massachusetts), I’ve never experienced a bishop election. Every time I leave a diocese, they elect a new bishop. I try not to take this personally but I’m finally getting my chance to exercise my right to vote as we prepare to elect the next Bishop of Massachusetts tomorrow.
Since I’m a novice, I do have a few questions. Perhaps some of you who have been through this process can enlighten me.
1. Is wearing purple to an episcopal election as big a social faux pas as wearing white to a wedding?
2. Do you need to sit on the east side of the cathedral since by the time voting gets to the west end the election will have already been decided?
3. Can we pretty please call it a “conclave?”
4. Is electioneering allowed within 50 feet of the altar?
5. Is it like Cinderella except instead of a slipper all the candidates try on a miter to see which one it fits?
6. If we all collectively decide not to cast any votes because we don’t actually want a bishop, will ecclesiastical anarchy ensue?
7. White smoke or purple?
8. Can we defrock the first cleric who friends the new bishop on Facebook?
9. If there is an election controversy, do we appeal to Saint (Hanging) Chad of Lichfield?
10. Does the winner get a free nautilus tattoo on a body part to be named later?
Well, those are my questions. Please keep the Diocese of Massachusetts and all the candidates in your prayers. Live updates will be posted here and if you want to follow along on Twitter tomorrow, check the hashtag #Diomass.