As stated in different ways throughout our profile, the Diocese of El Camino Real is a diverse and dynamic family of parishes, missions, and people who are excited about who and where we are and also deeply engaged in discerning where we’re going. Living in an increasingly secular time and place (a “post-Christendom” society), facing declining numbers and finances, and a social perception of irrelevance, we perceive the Spirit’s call to a journey of becoming the bold church of the 21st century.
We feel called into the dynamic and reinvigorating energy that, sparked by Christ, exploded into a global community that changed the world. We feel called to exploring and discovering new ways of being church that have not yet emerged while also drawing from the beauty and tradition of our heritage.
As a socio-economically, culturally, linguistically, and technologically diverse diocese — spanning wine country and agricultural fields, surf tourism, universities, and Silicon Valley’s fields of technology — we feel called to building bridges between our communities that celebrate our diversity, draw from our strengths to address our needs, and broadly communicate our genuine welcome to all of God’s children.
Walk With Us
We feel called to search and grow deeply in our faith as a diocese and to be a voice of change and challenge to the broader church as we seek new ways to reach all those searching for some greater purpose in their lives. As a diocese in a church still discovering and overcoming its own history (and present) of institutional racism, we feel deeply called to fully integrate and truly celebrate the diversity that makes our diocese uniquely challenged and uniquely blessed by each other in our work, play, and life together.
We feel called together to bridge the gaps still isolating those who have historically (and recently) been excluded from the church because of barriers of race, age (our youth and young adults as well as our elders), language (our non-English speakers), geography (our rural non-drivers), economic diversity (our poor, struggling, and homeless), and gender diversity and sexual orientation (our LGBTQ+ community), continuing to develop responses to issues of social justice across our diocese and beyond.
And as a diocese blessed and inspired by the Holy Spirit’s movement amongst us, blessed and inspired by one another’s creativity, by the collaborative collegiality of our clergy and lay leaders, by our willingness to look at things differently (both spiritually and intellectually), we feel called in our creative restlessness to seek out and live into a future church that is in that eschatological state of already emerging amongst us and through us, and yet still on the event horizon of our perception and understanding.
We are called to the work of collaboration, relational development, improving our use and deployment of technology and media, improving education opportunities (including in Spanish!), and continuing to develop our sense of service to and engagement with all of God’s creation waiting outside our beautiful—and yet sometimes limiting—doors.
Our next bishop will be both leader and companion on this journey of faith and collaboration.
They will be relational in their approach, grounded in their faith, prayerful and humble. They will be a visionary in collaboration with visionaries—confident enough to listen, and collaborative in creatively realizing our common dreams.
They will be a voice in the public square on social justice issues, willing to speak truth to power and using their position to draw attention to the need for change. They will be a pastor, confidante, and support to our clergy, champions of diaconal and lay ministries, and a reconciling presence in parish crises.
They will be able to balance continuity and change, helping us to build the new while respecting the old (which means, of course, they’ll understand system transformation too). They will have a strong belief in and practice of multicultural inclusion as well as a working proficiency in Spanish or an honest desire to grow in learning Spanish or other languages. They will have a heart for ministry – both for and in the world–and a willingness to learn and grow with us as we learn and grow into the future. We are a diocese living into the future church that doesn’t yet exist, seeking a bishop to partner with us.