Women and the Episcopate

Women have served as bishops since 1989 and as presiding bishop since 2006. However, the overall percentage of women in the House of Bishops today is little changed from 20 years ago, especially among diocesan bishops. Women have continued to enter search processes and become finalist nominees in a growing number of dioceses, but the persistent low ratio of women elected has prompted concern from every General Convention since 2006.

Cast Wide the Net recognizes that each bishop election is unique and relies upon discerning the right match of candidate gifts and skills with diocesan needs. These resources, for both women who are discerning or entering a bishop election and for search and transition committees, seek to help women be effective candidates and to help dioceses ensure that all candidates are treated fairly and faithfully.

These tools and resources are offered from the experience of women who have been through the election process as well as from the wisdom of those who have consulted on dozens of bishop elections over the years. If you have resources to share or are in need of a particular type of resource, contact Judy Stark, Chair of the Board for Transition Ministry, or the Rev. Meghan F. Froehlich, Director of the Office for Transition Ministry.

Women bishops joined in the celebration in the house of Deputies after the vote was announced and the presiding bishop-elect welcomed. From left, are Gail Harris, Chilton Knudsen, Carol Gallagher, Carolyn Irish, Barbara Harris, Catherine Roskham and Catherine Waynick.

CONTACT
The Rev. Meghan Froehlich
Missioner for Transition Ministry