Congregations/Clergy » The Bishop Search

Meet the Bishop Candidates

The Rev. Canon Lucinda Ashby
Canon to the Ordinary
The Episcopal Diocese of Idaho

Lucinda Ashby

View resume

View essay answers

The Rev. Canon Michael Buerkel Hunn
Canon to the Presiding Bishop
of The Episcopal Church

Michael Hunn

View resume

View essay answers

The Rev. Simon Charles Justice
Rector, Church of the Good Samaritan
Corvallis, Oregon

Simon Justice

View resume

View essay answers

The Rt. Rev. Michael L. Vono, D.D., has announced his intention to retire in the late fall of 2018, and has initiated the process for the eventual election of his successor, who will be the tenth Bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of the Rio Grande.

The Standing Committee will be appointing a Search Committee and Transitions Committee to oversee the process leading up to the election in late Spring of 2018.

Updates on the process will be posted in the News and Events listing, and linked to the Search logo on the diocesan website home page.

Transition Team updates on Candidates, Walk-Abouts, Electing Convention and Bishop Vono's retirement celebrations.

Click here for the Bishop’s letter to the Diocese.

Click here for election convention voting requirements

Bishop Search Committe Updates

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April 28, 2017

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May 19, 2017

The Bishop Search Committee met again May 19, with progress reported from all subcommittees. Consultant Ann Schmidt informed the committee that it was on schedule. The committee regretfully accepted the resignation of The Rev. James Brzezinski, who is leaving the Diocese of the Rio Grande to take a position as rector in Morrison, Ill. The committee’s next meeting is Friday, June 9.

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June 9, 2017

At the June 9 meeting, the Profile Subcommittee reported that it had received 227 electronic and five paper responses to the Bishop Search Survey on Survey Monkey. Of those 232 responses, 83 percent were from the laity, 65 percent were from the two northern deaneries, 65 percent were from urban areas, and 65 percent of the respondents were women. The subcommittee reported that it was substantially ahead of schedule in its tasks.

Besides hearing other subcommittee reports, the Committee also discussed the best way to do first long-distance interviews with bishop nominees and the importance of both anonymity and confidentiality.

The Committee adjusted its calendar and added a meeting to be held the morning of Oct. 19, the first day of the diocesan convention.

The Rev. Robert Mundy, Committee chaplain, opened and closed the meeting with prayer.

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July 28, 2017

The Bishop Search Committee met on July 28 and reviewed a draft of the Diocesan Profile, which is scheduled to be put on line by Sept. 1; at that time nominations will be open. Some suggestions were proffered to the profile authors and accepted but on the whole the full committee was quite satisfied with the draft.

Responses to questions about the diocese for the Office for Transitional Ministry, a part of the process required by the national church, also were previewed. Suggestions for it were proffered and accepted.

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August 14, 2017

The Bishop Search Committee met Aug. 14 and discussed several vital subjects, including a final polish of the diocesan profile, which is set to be released Sept. 1. A timeline for the steps needed to be taken once names of possible candidates was discussed. The discernment subcommittee was joined with the visitation and interview subcommittee to help facilitate the taking of these steps.

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September 11, 2017

As part of reviewing and affirming the Search Committee norms, done aspart of every meeting, the committee discussed and reaffirmed theimportance of group consensus before final decisions were made.A method for handling the first screening of candidate applications was putin place. A method for handling video interviews with candidates who get tothat particular stage of the search process also was discussed.

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November 14, 2017

The Bishop Search Committee met Nov. 13 and 14 at the Bosque Center.

The committee’s main business, successfully concluded, was to decide which candidates would move forward to the next part of the process — video interviews — and which would not. Each candidate’s perceived strengths and challenge areas were thoroughly discussed and all decisions were arrived at by consensus.

Following the video interviews and their evaluation, the committee will invite some of the candidates to Albuquerque for face-to-face interviews. After those interviews, three names will be chosen to be sent to the Standing Committee as the Search Committee’s recommendations for stand for election as the 10th bishop of the Diocese of the Rio Grande.

The Search Committee meets again in early December.

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December 15, 2017

Bishop search process “going well.”

The Bishop Search Committee remains on track following its two-day meeting December 11-12 that involved video interviews with the remaining seven candidates.

Both committee chairs, Roy Benavides and Deacon Beth Noland, were happy with the sessions.

“I am pleased with the search committee’s efforts and their diligence in the search process and further pleased with the quality of candidates that we have to consider,” Benavides said. “As we work toward the completion of our task, I am excited about the level and quality of the candidates.”

Said The Rev. Noland, “The committee is on schedule regarding interviewing our applicants and that process will continue into January.”

The committee will continue to evaluate the candidates in the period before its next meeting January 12, at which time it will determine which candidates to invite to Albuquerque for face-to-face interviews.

The Rev. Noland said the committee was grateful that it was on schedule, adding, “We thank the people of this diocese for their prayers and ask that they please continue to pray for this process. It is going well.”

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January 12, 2018

The Bishop Search Committee met and confirmed the selection of five candidates to come to Albuquerque in March for in-person interviews. Following the interviews, which will take place over two days, the committee will, by consensus, choose three names to send to the Standing Committee as finalists to stand for election on May 5.

Standing Committee

Members of the Standing Committee are always available for e-mails, phone calls, and visits about this process. Get in touch with us at:

Dr. Kathleen Pittman, President 575-491-4218
The Rev. Jan Hosea 505-250-1610
The Rev. Rod Hurst 575-885-6200
Christine Johnson 505-473-0884
Paula Mote 505-328-5181
The Rev. Dan Tuton 505-830-0572

Search Committee

Lay Co-chair Roy Benavides
Chaplain to the Process The Very Rev. Robert Mundy
Northeast Deanery Heather Leibman, Rev. Catherine Volland, Rev. Jim Gordon
Northwest Deanery Jack Sloan, Beth Noland (also Clergy Co-chair), Victor Rizzo
Southeast Deanery Jerry O'Dette, Rev. Beverly Moore-Tasy, Rev. Suzanne Brockmeier
Southwest Deanery Paul Thomason, Rev. James Brzezinski, Patrick Lamb

The Transition Team

Cindy Daviskencindy031@msn.com505-379-7327Cathedral, ABQ/lay chair
Dale Plummerrectorstandrews@yahoo.com575-622-1353St. Andrew's, Roswell/clergy chair
Christopher Adamscma0716@gmail.com252-452-8540Trinity on the Hill, Los Alamos
JP Arrossajparrossa@msn.com505-345-8147 X 116St Michael & All Angels
Tom Batesthomasjbates7@gmail.com575-538-5076Good Shepherd, Silver City
Sarah Brockmeiersb4keeper@gmail.com937-546-5709St. Andrew's, Las Cruces/Communication Chair
Jean Campbelljccampbell1990@gmail.com845-505-9700St. Francis, Rio Rancho/Consecration Chair
Bob Clarkgalleryjohn66@gmail.com505-876-0573All Saints', Grants
Bill Coxwcox377492@aol.com915-494-4169St. Francis', El Paso
Robin Dodgefr.robin@holyfaithchurchsf.org505-982-4447Holy Faith, Santa Fe/Walk-About Chair
Troy Gilliardttgncnm@hotmail.com575-749-1746St. James, Clovis
Jeremiah Griffinfr.jeremiah@stchadsabq.org432-638-4195St. Chad's, Albuquerque/New bishop support chair
Gary Gunthorpeggunthorpe@gmail.com505-681-0141St. Mark's, ABQ
Nancy Haynesnancy1755@comcast.net575-571-2234St. Andrew's, Las Cruces
Lendra Haileylendra.hailey@clovis-schools.org575-763-3466St. James, Clovis
Madelynn Johnsonmkpriest@msn.com505-780-0801St. Paul's Peace/Support of current staff & bishop celebration chair
Alex Lenzolenzoalexander@gmail.com267-928-9952St. Francis', Rio Rancho
Jon Morrisonjlmorrison.rotary@gmail.com575-418-1655Epiphany, Socorro
Ron Prestonrondall88@gmail.com575-336-2590Holy Mount, Ruidoso
Morag Smithmoragsmith@gmail.com505-603-3665Holy Family, Santa Fe/Electing Convention chair
Bruce Taylorwinandbruce1973@live.com575-519-9795Good Shepherd, Silver City
Linda Wilsonpr.lrwilson@gmail.com307-840-0826Epiphany, Socorro

Prayer for Seeking a New Bishop for The Episcopal Diocese of the Rio Grande

Holy and Almighty God our Father, You have blessed us in the Diocese of the Rio Grande in manifold ways over the past years. You have strengthened us, united us, loved us, guided us.
We thank you, Lord.
Touch the hearts of able clergy men and women throughout the Episcopal Church so that they might hear your call upon their lives to do your work among us and with us and through us.
We entreat you, Lord.
Be with our Diocesan Bishop Search Committee that they will discern your will in choosing good candidates who will be elected by the diocese to be our future Bishop.
We entreat you, Lord.
Be with our Diocesan Transition Committee as they guide us in blending our lives and our ministries with that of our new Bishop in order that we move forward in our life together.
We entreat you, Lord.
Be with us all. Give us patience and trust as we seek a new shepherd for our diocese. Be with us, Lord, for the sake of your son, Jesus Christ.

Santo y todopoderoso Dios, Padre nuestro, en la Diócesis del Rio Grande nos has bendecido de múltiples maneras en estos últimos años. Nos has fortalecido, unido, amado y guiado.
Te damos gracias, Señor.
Toca los corazones de clérigos capaces en toda la Iglesia Episcopal para que puedan escuchar tu llamado a dedicar sus vidas a la obra que haces entre nosotros, con nosotros y a través nuestro.
Te suplicamos, Señor.
Obra en nuestro Comité Diocesano de Nominaciones para que pueda discernir tu voluntad en la selección de buenos candidatos, de entre quienes la diócesis elegirá nuestro futuro obispo.
Te suplicamos, Señor.
Obra en nuestro Comité Diocesano de Transición mientras nos guía hacia la armonización de nuestras vidas y nuestros ministerios con los del nuevo obispo para que unidos podamos continuar hacia adelante en nuestras vidas.
Te suplicamos, Señor.
Mora con nosotros. Danos paciencia y fe en la búsqueda de un nuevo pastor para nuestra diócesis. Mora con nosotros, Señor, por tu hijo, Jesucristo.