Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
I have been wanting to write to you ever since my final service with the Diocese on February 27th. Karen and I were so richly blessed to share that time with those of you were able to attend in person as well as all of you who joined us via the internet. It was a joyful day worshiping our Lord with family and friends from around the Diocese and wider Church, yet it was also a sad day, knowing that would be my final service for the Diocese of Albany.
I am so appreciative to Mtr. Elizabeth and Fr. Tom Papazoglakis and St. George’s, Clifton Park, for hosting the service, and for Lay Canon Jerry and Fran Carroll, Mtr. Meaghan Keegan, Deacon Marian Sive, Christopher Fitz, Warren Wright-Sedam, the Standing Committee and everyone else who worked so hard to make it such a blessed and special day – one which I will never forget.
Karen and I were both deeply touched and humbled by the tremendous generosity and outpouring of love so many of you shared with us through the many cards, letters and gifts we received. I have read and kept each card and letter and by the grace of God, hope to personally respond to each one very soon. I had hoped to have already done so before now, and am embarrassed that I haven’t yet. Please forgive me. I have been busily working trying to finish sorting through 14 years of files, packing up two offices, and tying up loose ends for the Diocese, which will be complete this week.
There is no way to adequately express how truly honored and blessed I have been to serve as your bishop these past 14 years. It has been one of the greatest highlights and privileges of my life. I love and appreciate each of you and wish you only the very best and all God’s blessings in the days and years to come. I am so appreciative to Fr. Scott Garno and the Standing Committee for their sound and faithful leadership during this time of transition.
Following my resignation as Bishop Diocesan on February 1st, I have spent much time in thought and prayer, seeking God’s guidance in how I might best remain faithful to His Holy Word and serve Him and His Church in this next chapter of life. In so doing, I have come to believe that the Lord is now releasing me from any further ordained ministry in The Episcopal Church. I wrote the Presiding Bishop on March 25th (the Feast of the Annunciation), resigning from the House of Bishops and requesting to be released and removed from ordained ministry in the Episcopal Church, effective Good Friday, April 2, 2021. A copy of that letter will be published separately.
As a cradle Episcopalian (with nearly 30 years of ordained ministry as a deacon, priest and bishop), that was not an easy decision, but given all that has transpired these past couple of years and the constraints placed upon me as a theologically conservative and orthodox bishop within TEC, I believe it is the right decision. I know not all of you will agree with this decision and some may be angered or hurt by it, and for that I am very sorry.
It is my hope and plan to be received into the Anglican Church of North America (ACNA) in the very near future, at which time all the details of what I will be doing and where I will be serving will be shared in a separate announcement. At the moment, Karen and I have no plans to physically move from our home in the Adirondacks, but we also know it would not be appropriate for me to serve in any ACNA parishes within the geographic boundaries of the Diocese of Albany.
Although Karen and I are about to begin a new path in our Christian walk and service, it is my most sincere hope and prayer that all the friendships we have made with so many of you throughout the Diocese these past 30 years will continue. Again, I love and appreciate each of you. The clergy and people of the Diocese of Albany will always hold a very special place in my heart.
May God the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit bless and keep you this day and forever more; may He watch over and protect you; may His light shine upon you and radiate from you, filling you with His perfect peace, as He sends you out to be an instrument of His love and mercy and healing grace. Amen!
Faithfully Your Brother in Christ,
The Rt. Rev. William H. Love
IX Bishop of Albany (Resigned)