The Right Reverend Keith L. Ackerman, VIIIth Bishop of Quincy, has announced to the Standing Committee his retirement as Diocesan Bishop effective November 1st, 2008. Bishop Ackerman has reached this decision after much thought and prayer. The Bishop and his wife Jo conferred with his physicians, many trusted friends, and the Standing Committee before making this decision.According to TitusOneNine, this is a message from Quincy's Standing Committee.
While Bishop Ackerman is retiring from his administrative duties as executive officer of the Diocese, he plans to remain in the area of the Diocese for some time and will make himself available, under arrangement with the Standing Committee, to perform Episcopal acts and provide spiritual counsel to members of the Diocese, as have Bishop Donald Parsons and Bishop Edward MacBurney, the VIth and VIIth Bishops of Quincy.
Under diocesan canons, the Standing Committee will continue to act as the ecclesiastical authority of the diocese, as they have since the Bishop’s sabbatical began in late August. Day to day operations of the diocese will continue to be handled by the various officers and department heads.
Bishop Ackerman wants to assure everyone that he has no intention of abandoning the diocese but will continue to provide spiritual and pastoral support as asked by the Standing Committee.
Bishop Ackerman has been on sabbatical since the Lambeth Conference, and has not been in the best of health for well over a year. I won't even begin to speculate on the meanings of this. The Quincy priests I know love and respect him very much and cherish his ministry. How well they have been prepared for this, I don't know -- but there was no hint of anything like this at the Peoria Deanery's pre-Synod convocation a week ago Sunday.
Observers will note that the agenda of the upcoming Synod (the end of next week) includes votes to disassociate from The Episcopal Church and associate with the Anglican Province of the Southern Cone until a new, more orthodox Anglican province is established for North America.
As for my personal regard for Bishop Ackerman, click the Quincy category label on the right column. And do join me in prayer for a godly bishop and and a faithful diocese. This is very difficult news. Yet we remain in Christ's care.