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Mary Gray-Reeves elected as third bishop of Episcopal Diocese of El Camino Real


The Ven. Rev. Mary Gray-Reeves was elected June 16 to be the next bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of El Camino Real.

Gray-Reeves, 44, archdeacon for deployment, Diocese of Southeast Florida, was elected on the second ballot from a slate of four candidates (a fifth candidate, the Rev. Paige Blair, withdrew after the first ballot). An election on the second ballot required 103 votes of the 205 cast in the lay order and 58 of 114 votes cast in the clergy order. Gray-Reeves was elected with 163 lay votes and 91 clergy votes.

She becomes the 15th woman elected as a bishop of the Episcopal Church and she will be among the five youngest members of the House of Bishops.

The election took place at York School in Monterey, California.

Under the canons the Episcopal Church (III.11.4), a majority of bishops exercising jurisdiction and diocesan Standing Committees must consent to Gray-Reeves’ election and ordination as bishop.

Gray-Reeves is meant to succeed Bishop Richard Shimpfky who resigned at the end of March 2004, after leading the diocese for 14 years. Bishop Sylvestre Romero-Palma, formerly Bishop of the Anglican Diocese of Belize, has been serving as assisting bishop for the diocese.

The consecration is planned for November 10 at St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church in Saratoga, California.

The complete ballot results are available here.

Gray-Reeves has been the archdeacon for deployment in the Diocese of Southeast Florida since January 2005. Prior to that, she was rector of St. Margaret’s Episcopal Church in Miami Lakes, Florida from 1998 to 2004. She had previously served as an assistant to the rectors of St. James EpiscopalChurch in South Pasadena, California and Christ Church, Redondo Beach, California. She holds the bachelor of theology degree (the equivalent of a master of divinity degree) from St. John’s Theological College in Auckland, New Zealand. Gray-Reeves was a deputy to General Convention in 2003 and 2006, and has been involved in various diocesan-wide activities in Southeast Florida. She and husband Michael Reeves are the parents of two teen-aged children.

More biographical information about Gray-Reeves is available here.

The other nominees were:

* the Rev. Paige Blair, 36, rector, St. George’s Episcopal Church, York Harbor, Maine (Diocese of Maine);
* the Rev. David Breuer, 60, rector of St. Luke’s Episcopal Church, Los Gatos, California (Diocese of El Camino Real);
* the Rev. Gale Davis Morris, 60, rector, Church of the Good Shepherd, Acton, Massachusetts (Diocese of Massachusetts); and
* the Rev. John Palarine, 58, rector, Episcopal Church of Our Savior, Jacksonville, Florida (Diocese of Florida).

The diocese was formed in 1980 out of the Diocese of California. It extends along the Pacific coast between San Francisco and Los Angeles from Palo Alto to San Luis Obispo, encompassing the counties of Santa Clara, San Benito, Santa Cruz, Monterey, and San Luis Obispo. Trinity Cathedral in San Jose serves as the diocesan see while the diocesan offices are located in Seaside on the Monterey Peninsula. Farming, technology, vineyards and resort areas are found in the diocese. Congregations worship in English, Spanish, Tagalog, Laotian, Vietnamese, Mandarin, Cantonese, Sudanese dialects and Lakota. About 14,330 Episcopalians worship in the diocese’s 50 congregations.

The diocesan profile is available here.


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