The Episcopal Diocese of Michigan has consecrated its first openly lesbian bishop, in a move that the liberal mainline regional body is confident will not lead to further large-scale departures from the denomination.
The Rev. Bonnie A. Perry was consecrated as the eleventh bishop of the diocese at a ceremony held Saturday at the Ford Community & Performing Arts Center in Dearborn.
Perry had been elected bishop in June of last year on the fifth ballot of the Special Electing Convention held at the Cathedral Church of St. Paul, Detroit. She got the votes of 64 clergy and 118 laity, which surpassed the minimum requirement of 55 clergy and 94 laity, according to Anna Stania, director of Communications for the diocese.
Stania also told The Christian Post that Perry did not experience any opposition to her candidacy because of her sexual orientation or that she is married to someone of the same-sex.
“We have experienced an overwhelming outpouring of joy, grace and excitement since her election and consecration,” explained Stania.
“We have been an open and affirming diocese for many years. Bishop Perry brings many incredible talents and abilities to our diocese, including her talent for growing congregations and serving and engaging deeply within communities. These talents are something that all of our congregations are eager to utilize and to learn from.”
In 2003, The Episcopal Church garnered controversy when it consecrated the Rev. Gene Robinson as the first openly gay bishop in the denomination’s history.
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SOURCE: Christian Post, Michael Gryboski