Deputies re-elect Byron Rushing vice president, unopposed

By Pat McCaughan
Posted Jun 29, 2015

[Episcopal News Service – Salt Lake City] The House of Deputies on June 29 re-elected Byron Rushing for a second term as vice president. He was unopposed.

Deputy Sarah Neumann of Massachusetts nominated Rushing. President of the House of Deputies the Rev. Gay Clark Jennings suspended the rules of order and called for the election to take place immediately; Rushing was re-elected by an overwhelming voice vote, cheers, applause and a sustained standing ovation.

Rushing addressed deputies and Jennings briefly. “You know that most of the time the words vice president appear in the canons they appear with the words, resignation, death, absence, inability,” he told Jennings amid laughter. “Let me tell you, I pray for you every day. I have even been known to reach deep into my Anglo-Catholic roots and light candles.”

Growing serious, he added, “To work so closely with you and to have your support has meant so much to me.”

To the deputies he said, “You know I love Jesus. You know I love God’s mission and you know I love this house. You are a great house because you are so key, you having all of us in this part of God’s great church be so effective in following Jesus. Thank you.”

Jennings added that Rushing has served the house with distinction for 14 General Conventions and attended the 1970 convention as part of the youth presence. “We are so fortunate all of us in this house to have his wisdom and counsel, his great love, not only for Jesus but for The Episcopal Church. He has been the best to work with, thank you.”

The House of Deputies also elected six lay members of Executive Council, whose elections have yet to be confirmed by the House of Bishops.

Also elected June 29 were:

The General Theological Seminary Trustees:
* The Rev. Yamily Bass-Choate, Diocese of New York;
* Anne Clarke Brown, Diocese of Vermont;
* The Rev. Tommy Joe Dillon II, Diocese of Olympia;
* Dianne Audrick Smith, Diocese of California

Members of the Disciplinary Board for Bishops
* The Rev Canon Suzann Holding, Diocese of San Diego
* The Rev. Erik W. Larsen, Diocese of Rhode Island
* Deborah Stokes, Diocese of Southern Ohio
* Marcellus Smith, Diocese of Alabama

The General Seminary trustees help guide the direction of the seminary and support the dean and student body. The Disciplinary Board for Bishops serves as a court of the church to have original jurisdiction over matters of discipline of bishops, to hear bishops’ appeals from imposition of restriction on ministry or placement on administrative leave and to determine venue issues as provided in Canon IV.19.5.

— The Rev. Pat McCaughan is part of the Episcopal News Service team covering General Convention.