UPDATED at 3:59 p.m. CDT
The bishop of West Tennessee, the Rev. Don E. Johnson, has voted to withhold consent to the bishop-elect of Northern Michigan, a Tennessee diocesan spokeswoman confirmed today. The diocese’s standing committee has also voted “no.”
But the standing committee of the Diocese of San Joaquin has decided to approve the election of the Rev. Kevin G. Thew Forrester. Among those present for the April 18 vote, the vote was unanimous, according to the standing committee’s Cindy Smith.
“We reviewed various articles and opinions by different people and we weighed those and we felt that we wanted to give our consent” after giving the issue “careful consideration,” Smith said.
Meanwhile, the bishop of Central Pennsylvania has voted no, but that diocese’s standing committee has voted yes. [h/t: StandFirmInFaith.com, which has a link to the diocese's statement.]
The Idaho Standing Committee also voted Saturday, April 18, to consent to the election of Thew Forrester as bishop of Northern Michigan, a diocesan staffer confirmed today. [April 24.]
But three other dioceses confirmed that their standing committees have voted to withhold consent.
Jerry Witherspoon of the Standing Committee of El Camino Real in California confirms that his committee voted unanimously, with one abstention, to withhold consent earlier this month.
On April 23, the standing committee of the diocese of Tennessee voted to withhold consent, according to one of its members, the Rev. Leigh Spruill, rector of St. George’s Episcopal Church in Nashville.
A statement explaining the post will be posted on the Tennessee diocesan website, probably by early next week, Spruill said.
Finally, the diocese of Maryland announced today that its bishop and standing committee had also withheld consent.
A statement on the diocese’s website reads:
April 24, 2009
After thoughtful conversation, consideration, and prayer over the course of multiple meetings, the Standing Committee of the Diocese of Maryland, and the Right Reverend Eugene T. Sutton, Bishop of Maryland, have decided not to give their consent to the election of the Rev. Kevin Lee Thew Forrester as Bishop of the Diocese of Northern Michigan.
The Rev. Scott P. Bellows, President
The Standing Committee