I am joyful and grateful for the call to join you in the Jesus Movement in San Diego! So many things about this diocese are exciting: your kind and gracious people, your life-transforming ministries to those in need, your caring and advocacy for people who are oppressed, your love for Jesus and your hope for growing the church’s mission in San Diego. I look forward to joining you and discerning where God is calling us. You are in my prayers constantly, and I pray that the Holy Spirit will guide us in fulfilling God’s mission for the Episcopal Church in this beautiful place.
I will move to San Diego and join the diocesan staff on Monday, May 6, even though I won’t be ordained as your bishop, God willing, until the ordination and consecration on Saturday, June 15. Starting work early will give me an opportunity to work with Bishop Katharine, and to learn about the diocese and its many ministries. I so appreciate her ministry as your assisting bishop, as I know you do.
In addition to learning from Bishop Katharine, I am eager to meet all of you. I hope to meet many of you at the ordination. There will be a gathering for clergy on Friday, June 14, and I look forward to getting to know some of the clergy members better then. I plan to spend a good bit of time my first few months driving around the diocese. I would like to visit each church, sit down with the clergy and others and get to know you, and learn about your hopes, needs, opportunities and challenges.
I will follow that initial get-to-know-you time with some listening sessions in the different regions of the diocese. In those listening sessions, I will ask you to share your visions for the church so I can hear your ideas. Your diocesan leaders and I will use the thoughts you share to formulate a vision for the coming years together.
Most of all, I look forward to getting to know the Diocese of San Diego and sharing in your ministry. I can’t wait to begin visiting your congregations and institutions and finding out how our diocese can support you in following Jesus. I believe that God is doing great things in the Diocese of San Diego!