General Convention Resources - St. Stephen's Episcopal ChurchEvery three years, the Episcopal Church gathers in one of the largest gatherings of Christians in the world called General Convention.

General Convention is the time in which the Episcopal Church does its work of voting and deciding on its future. It is made up of deputies from all orders: Lay, Bishop, Priest, and Deacon, and gives us a chance to be together to do the work as one.

When General Convention is not in session, we have other rules at play. The Presiding Bishop and several commissions of the church act in accordance of the decisions made at General Convention. In this way, we might say that there is no real organization, no real Episcopal Church outside of Convention except in the local congregations.

[Note: for tax purposes, the federal government requires an actual entity with an address, so we technically have one. We just don’t function in that way.]

This makes General Convention an awesome opportunity to gather and worship and celebrate and learn and discern the way forward for the church, tomorrow, the next three years, and for the foreseeable future. Many at St. Stephen’s participated three years ago when our diocese hosted #GC77.

Every three years I bemoan how difficult it is to find a truly comprehensive resource for keeping track of General Convention. I often have to cobble together my reading from multiple resources, which tend to be either official ones or the usual suspects. This year, there appears to be a couple of new ones that may prove quite beneficial to those looking to follow along.

Below you will find a list of resources that I use to follow General Convention. It is not comprehensive, for there are many, many websites covering the goings on of the Episcopal Church. These, however, may be useful to you. If you would like to add any other sites to the list, please email me at rector[at]ststephensth.org or visit the Contact page.

 

News & Information

in order of informativeness

  • General Convention  –  The official Convention page from the Episcopal Church. This will have the details of committees, resolutions, and official reports, without commentary or reflection.
  • House of Deputies  –  Stories and insights from one of the two chambers. This is likely to be a central resource for the discerning reader.
  • House of Deputies News  –  A new news site with big potential. Jim Naughton is involved, so I’m sold. If you only follow one, this may be the one to pick.
  • Episcopal News Service  –  The official news service for the Episcopal Church. The main stories will show up here.
  • Episcopal Cafe  –  A great independent source of Episcopal news. This will cover more than convention, and give some opportunities for commentary, particularly with a fairly well-used comment section.
  • Religion News Service  –  Perhaps the main source of religion news in general, RNS is a good source. You’re only likely to find the really big stories showing up here, though.

Commentary

in alphabetical order

  • Acts 8 Moment  –  A group born out of the restlessness before the last General Convention, the Acts 8 Moment has been proclaiming resurrection for the Episcopal Church for the last three years.
  • Crusty Old Dean  –   Tom Ferguson is the dean of Bexley Seabury Seminary. He is smart, forward thinking, and sometimes very challenging.
  • Episcopal Resurrection  –  Some of the same people from Acts 8 above formed this group to make some specific charges to this General Convention to not only keep the church afloat, but to revitalize and bring new life to it. Their proposals are quite something.
  • Seven Whole Days  –   Scott Gunn is an Episcopal priest and head of Forward Movement, publishers of the beloved Forward Day-by-Day. Rev. Gunn is a church geek and will certainly have robust commentary.
  • Walking with Integrity  –   The site for Integrity will cover LGBTQ issues. Several resolutions will come up at this convention.