By a unanimous vote today, the governing convention of the Episcopal Diocese of Pittsburgh approved the Rt. Rev. Kenneth L. Price, Jr. as the diocese’s Provisional Bishop.
Bishop Price now assumes full ecclesiastical authority in the diocese. As such, he becomes both the spiritual leader and a chief executive, overseeing diocesan administration and finances.
The follow remarks were delivered by Bishop Price, moments after accepting the approval of the 144th Annual Convention :
It is with great joy that I accept the decision of this Convention to elect me as your Provisional Bishop. My admiration and respect for the Diocese of Pittsburgh is genuine and goes back many years. I have watched with some consternation the difficulties you have gone through in recent years and I am grateful to be asked by you to be part of your rebuilding and revitalization.
The reason I am able to stand here today, confident in the future, is because of the careful and thorough work that your Standing Committee, under the able leadership of Dr. Jim Simons, and the other diocesan leaders, notably Joan Gundersen, have been able to accomplish in the past year. The fact that hard decisions have been able to be made with civility, care and concern is in a large part due to their attitudes and labor. Thanks also to the way these decisions have been communicated by Rich Creehan so that everyone had been able to know what has been happening. This tone of conciliation, respect and transparency is totally in keeping with my own desires and intentions and I hope will continue to prevail during my time with you.
I am grateful for the leadership of Andy Roman, Russ Ayres and the trustees and the many other legal experts in our Diocese. I will leave the heavy lifting in this area up to them but stand ready to support them in any way I can.
I am also grateful for the episcopal leadership of Bishop Bob Johnson who has exercised a ministry of healing and even-handedness that had been so vital to this diocese’s recovery. Following him and building on the work he has done will be an honor and a privilege.
Building on that tone he has set, I see my time among you to be spent exercising pastoral care for the clergy and laity alike, and to assist in the administrative challenges that lie ahead until the day comes when you are ready to mount a formal calling process for your next bishop. I will be visiting every congregation for Sunday worship every year I am among you and hope to be able to be with you on other occasions as well. After I am settled in residence at the end of December, I plan to set up regular times to meet with the clergy for Bible study and sharing and want to pay close attention to the nurture of our entire diocesan community, lay and clergy alike.
Finally, I believe it is vital that we who are the Diocese of Pittsburgh, be true to our own values, our own vision and our own way of responding to the call of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ and be respectful of the diversity and theological perspective of every person among us. I am here to support you in that journey in every way that I can.
And so, thank you once again people of the Diocese of Pittsburgh for your confidence in calling me and for your willingness for us to enter into partnership for the foreseeable future.