A Different Way to Choose a Vestry

At St. James Episcopal Church in Knoxville we discovered that our vestry election process was causing some potential nominees to hesitate about accepting the nomination. Some had run before and had been surprised by how hurt they were when they weren't elected. Others felt they weren't known well enough to be elected even thought they were faithful in serving the congregation and had something to offer by serving on the vestry. We took this as an opportunity to explore alternative methods of vestry selection. After talking with friends in other congregations and my bishop, I learned that a number of congregations selected their vestry members by lottery. The vestry and I discussed this, and then brought it to the congregation for their consideration and eventual vote at our annual meeting. So what specifically did we do? Click on the links below to read about the process we went through as a congregation and for a copy of our changed bylaw for vestry selection. Both are available in English and Spanish.