The Diocesan Standing Committee and the Rt. Rev. Susan E. Goff, Bishop Suffragan and Ecclesiastical Authority, announce with joyful thanksgiving that Presiding Bishop Michael Curry has notified the Diocese of Virginia that the Rev. Canon E. Mark Stevenson has received the required majority of consents from the House of Bishops and the Standing Committees of the dioceses of The Episcopal Church. This means that the June 4 election is now confirmed by the wider church and that Canon Stevenson is now officially Bishop-Elect Stevenson.
On March 28, the Standing Committee of the Diocese announced the slate of candidates for the election. On June 4, the delegates to the Diocesan Electing Convention elected Stevenson on the second ballot. Deborah Gandy, President of the Diocesan Standing Committee said today, “The Standing Committee is overjoyed to receive the Church’s affirmation of this election. Throughout the search and election process, we felt the movement of the Holy Spirit. We feel Bishop-Elect Stevenson is truly called to the unique ministry in the Diocese of Virginia. He is a man of deep faith, wisdom, passion, and love of Christ. We are so excited for him to begin his ministry with the people of the Diocese.”
Upon learning of the completed consent process, Bishop-Elect Stevenson said, “My friends in Christ in the Diocese of Virginia – I am thankful beyond words that we are on this journey together. What an exciting moment this is, as we take our next step forward! I also give thanks for those around the Church who have affirmed this ministry through the canonical consent process. I am honored by your trust. May God bless us all, as we tell out the love of Jesus on this day, and on all the days to come!”
The Rt. Rev. Susan E. Goff has served as the Ecclesiastical Authority of the Diocese since the retirement of the Rt. Rev. Shannon Johnston in 2018. “In the short months since Bishop-Elect Stevenson was elected, I have come greatly to admire, trust and respect him,” said Bishop Goff. “I’m feeling so confident and delighted that the Diocese will flourish in community with him.” Bishop Goff will retire on December 31 of this year, allowing time for her to work alongside Bishop-Elect Stevenson to ensure a smooth and orderly transition.
God willing, Bishop-Elect Stevenson will be consecrated the 14th Bishop Diocesan of the Diocese of Virginia on December 3 at The Saint Paul’s Baptist Church in Henrico, Virginia. Presiding Bishop Curry will preside at the consecration.