California Elects Bishop Andrus of Alabama
The new bishop of California will be the Rt. Rev. Mark Andrus, presently the suffragan bishop of Alabama. Three of the candidates on the ballot in California today were openly gay or lesbian, and the election of any of them would have presented GenCon with a clear choice as to whether or not to flout the will of the world-wide Anglican Communion. Bishop Andrus, however, while clearly a theological liberal, is a married man with college-age children. His election has been hailed by Integrity, a "gay rights" group within ECUSA, in these terms: “Bishop Andrus is a long-time Integrity ally and will bring his support for the full inclusion of LGBT people in the life of the church to his ministry in California.”
It looks increasingly unlikely that GenCon 06 will present as many clear decisions on whether or not ECUSA will choose to "walk apart" from the world-wide Anglican Communion as was once thought. With Bishop Andrus' election and the carefully-guarded language of the recommendations on compliance in the Windsor Report put forward by the Special Commission on the Anglican Communion, GenCon 06 may be able to pacify orthodox Anglican leaders overseas just enough to avoid being permanently ejected from the world-wide Communion. We shall see, but I longer expect major fireworks this summer at the national level. It remains to be seen what the Anglican Communion Network and overseas leaders will do in response to this slightly more eirenic tone.