The big news this week in United Methodism (aside from episcopal elections) is the vote of the South Central Jurisdiction’s Committee on Episcopacy to involuntarily retire Bishop Earl Bledsoe. You can find the details in this report from The United Methodist Reporter. The committee is concerned about Bishop Bledsoe’s administrative abilities, even though, he insists, that the statistics show growth and vitality in the North Texas Conference during his time as bishop there. The South Central Jurisdiction will vote this afternoon on whether to accept the recommendation of the Committee on Episcopacy to involuntarily retire Bishop Bledsoe? This appears to be an unprecedented move that raises a variety of questions.
Does a Jurisdictional Committee on Episcopacy have the authority to involuntarily retire a bishop? Is this an implication of the General Conference vote to end guranteed appointment? How does this shape the future with regard to the accountability of bishops? What do you think? What other questions are raised by this action? How will this shape the future of United Methodism? Leave a comment with your thoughts.