The Circle Begins to Close

Uh-oh: maybe this could have been predicted, but then again, hindsight brings the connections into sharper focus:

The Episcopal Church
Office of Public Affairs

Bishop Stacy Sauls named Episcopal Church Chief Operating Officer

Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori has named Bishop Stacy F. Sauls as Chief Operating Officer for the Episcopal Church.

“The Episcopal Church Center exists to support the Church in serving a diverse and changing world,” noted Presiding Bishop Jefferts Schori. “The churchwide staff has achieved new levels of excellence and innovation as the Church Center has been reorganized and some staff has been dispersed to offices in other geographic regions of the Church. This transition represents a healthy and forward-looking opportunity to build on that good work. Bishop Sauls brings a unique set of gifts to the next chapter of this ministry, particularly his distinguished service as a diocesan bishop. I am deeply grateful that he will join us in facilitating this work.”

Presiding Bishop Jefferts Schori made the announcement May 31.

As Chief Operating Officer, Sauls will oversee the staff of the Episcopal Church Center in New York City as well as offices located in Washington, DC, Los Angeles, CA, Seattle, WA, Puerto Rico, and elsewhere. Sauls will coordinate the work of the Church’s mission program, communication, finance and administration duties while assisting the Presiding Bishop in her role as Chief Executive Officer. Also, he will be an ex-officio member of the Executive Council and an active member of the board of Episcopal Relief & Development.

“This is the most interesting and rewarding time I can imagine to serve the Episcopal Church,” noted Sauls, Bishop of Lexington for more than a decade. “I am anxious to collaborate in the transformative leadership being provided by our Presiding Bishop and the devoted service being offered by Bonnie Anderson, President of the House of Deputies, and to bring my own creativity in challenging situations to the team. I am grateful to the Presiding Bishop for her confidence and the Executive Council for its endorsement.”

To think: the author of this Memorandum, which sought to justify the Presiding Bishop's uncanonical actions after the fact, is now to serve at her right hand.

The head of the Episcopal Church Property Task Force, who "expressed his concern that the [Episcopal] organization only has available to it 20 hours per week of legal counsel and is increasingly concerned that the church does not have a lawyer", is now the chief operations officer for that organization. As a former attorney, he will now not be able to become that lawyer, because he will be taking his orders from the Presiding Bishop -- in connection with whom he remarked, in the same quote linked above:

The EC does not have counsel, even though the PB does have and, it seems, everyone assumes that the PB’s counsel is everyone else’s counsel.

Will he now make that same assumption?

Did anyone else hear the sound of a clasp snapping shut at 815?

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