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From Columbus: Medical problems affect three Convention participants

By Nicole Seiferth
6/13/2006
[Episcopal News Service]  Integral to the legislation, worship and fellowship of General Convention is the way in which the participants care for one another as a family in Christ.  That support is particularly keen when participants fall ill.

The Rt. Rev. John P. Cronenberger, bishop of the Diocese of Newark and member of the Legislative Committee on Canons, was taken to Grant Hospital in Columbus on June 12 with sharp pain in his lower back. He was diagnosed with kidney stones and released later that evening. Cronenberger is now resting at his hotel and is expected to rejoin Convention soon. 

Duncan Bayne, deputy from the Diocese of Olympia and chair of the Standing Commission on Constitution and Canons, was also taken to the hospital on June 12 after experiencing shortness of breath. Tests indicated a heart valve was working improperly; Bayne underwent heart catheterization on June 13. He is scheduled to be released from the hospital and will return to Seattle for further consultation with his doctor. 

Bayne "appreciates everyone’s prayers," said the Rev. Peter Strimer, missioner for communications in the Diocese of Olympia. He is disappointed to be leaving General Convention and the Constitution and Canons Committee "with so much important work before that group."

Convention is prepared for any illnesses or injuries that may befall deputies or bishops.  The First Aid Center, located beside the House of Deputies, will be staffed by paramedics from the Columbus Fire Department for the duration of General Convention. 

The Rt. Rev. Paul Marshall, bishop of the Diocese of Bethlehem, is not attending General Convention in order to have shoulder surgery in Pennsylvania. The surgery requires a significant amount of recovery time – approximately six weeks. In addition to being in pain, the bishop decided to have the surgery during the slower summer months, in order to be "back working in the diocese when things start up again in September," according to the Rev. Canon Bill Lewellis, communication minister for the diocese.