CONNECTICUT: Douglas becomes diocesan bishop in weekend of worship[Episcopal News Service] In a service featuring participants from all over the world, the Rev. Dr. Ian T. Douglas, was ordained and consecrated April 17 as the 15th bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Connecticut.
Douglas, 51, was the Angus Dun Professor of Mission and World Christianity at Episcopal Divinity School, Cambridge, Massachusetts, when he was elected Oct. 24. He succeeds Bishop Andrew Smith and his election marked the first time in the diocese's 224-year history that a priest from outside of the diocese has been elected bishop.
An estimated 2,100 attended the ordination and consecration, the diocese said. Anglican Archbishop Emeritus of Cape Town Desmond Tutu preached and Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori was the chief consecrator. Diocese of North Carolina Bishop Michael B. Curry and Diocese of Northern Indiana Bishop Edward S. Little were co-consecrators.
Other consecrators included Smith, Diocese of Massachusetts Bishop M. Thomas Shaw and 25th Presiding Bishop Frank T. Griswold. Evangelical Lutheran Church in America Bishop Wilma S. Kucharek of the ELCA Slovak Zion Synod (an ethnic, non-geographic synod based in Torrington, Conn.) participated.
"God said, 'I will draw all people to be held in this unbreakable embrace that won't let us go,'" Tutu said, during his sermon, repeating the word "all" over and over, according to a description on the diocesan website.
"Ian, please tell the children of God that each one of them is precious," he said. "Each one of them is held in this public embrace, each one of them is a member of God's family."
After he was ordained and vested, Douglas told the congregation, "This is our diocese, our faithfulness to God's mission. And so now it begins."
The liturgy was based on the proper for the unity of the church instead of that for the ordination of a bishop. The congregation reaffirmed its baptismal vows after the creed. Douglas said in the notes to the service it is a way to "acknowledge and celebrate the primacy of baptism as our co-mission in God’s mission. This is God's mission in the world. We are invited into that ministry of restoration and reconciliation by virtue of our baptism."
Douglas and Connecticut bishops suffragan Laura J. Ahrens and James E. Curry each read the Eucharistic prayer in English, Creole and Spanish respectively.
The order of the service is here.
During Douglas' seating in the cathedral on April 18, House of Deputies President Bonnie Anderson said in her sermon that "in a symbolic and real way, yesterday's consecration and ordination service through the laying on of hands of the bishops, imparted the status of bishop to Ian. But today, in the epilogue, the bishop takes the chair, also called 'the cathedra.'"
"Demonstrating the mutuality and equality of discipleship, the seating of the bishop today, here in this holy place, is epilogue to the consecration," she said. "We are the reality of the ministry of all the baptized, gathered together in the family, in the household, to seat the bishop among us."
Anderson advocated for a full an equal role for both lay and ordained ministry in the Episcopal Church.
"Our baptism gives us the authority to live freely in the world and to serve the needs of the world," she said. "If we share that authority with each other it only makes us more powerful, more able to do God’s work in the world."
She said that the church can "get into trouble when the laity and the clergy and the bishops forget that we are all part of the community of faith and that we all have equal access to God’s power and authority."