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Central Pennsylvania election
Former Washington National Cathedral dean elected bishop


Nathan Baxter

The former dean of Washington National Cathedral, Nathan Baxter, was elected bishop of the Diocese of Central Pennsylvania on July 22. He most recently served as rector of St. James Episcopal Church in Lancaster, Pa., the largest parish in the diocese.

Baxter, 57, was elected on the fifth ballot. Subject to the approval of a majority of diocesan bishops and diocesan standing committees, he will be consecrated at Trinity Lutheran Church in Camp Hill on Oct. 21. He succeeds Bishop Michael Creighton, 65, who will retire later this year after 10 years of service.

A native of Harrisburg, Baxter is a graduate of the Lancaster Theological Seminary. From 1991 to 2003, he was dean of the cathedral in Washington, D.C. During that time, he led the National Day of Prayer and Remembrance Service after the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, and officiated at the memorial service for the crew of the space shuttle Columbia. He presided over the funerals and memorial services of many prominent Americans, including Supreme Court justices, politicians, newspaper publishers and royalty.

Previously, he was administrative dean at Episcopal Divinity School, Cambridge, Mass. He has a doctor of ministry degree at Lancaster Theological Seminary, where he is adjunct professor of preaching.

Southern Virginia diocese names an assisting bishop

The diocese of Southern Virginia took the next step in an Episcopal transition when it named John Clark Buchanan, retired bishop of West Missouri, as its assisting bishop. Buchanan is bishop-in-residence of the Diocese of Texas.

His first major event will be a special diocesan council meeting on Oct. 7. The diocese has begun searching for a new bishop following the resignation of Bishop David Bane.