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British Columbia: New bishop-elect in  Caledonia

(Staff)  ON OCTOBER 25, the Rev. David Lehmann was elected Bishop of Caledonia on the 20th and last canonically allowed ballot. Lehmann’s election came in the midst of a contentious time in the Diocese of Caledonia – between the Provincial House of Bishop’s rejection of Caledonia’s April election of Jake Worley, and before Archbishop John Privett’s firing of Worley in the interim between local diocesan bishops. 

Bishop David Lehmann (SuppliedPhoto)

Lehmann, who is single, currently serves as priest at St. John’s Anglican in Ft. Smith, NT in the Diocese of the Arctic. In a written submission to the diocese, Lehmann affirmed the “traditional, scriptural definition of marriage” and described marriage as a “vocation and a sacrament, one that not all are called to; but one that all should reverence.” He also stated that if elected he would focus on “Discipleship, Vocations and Evangelism.”

The Diocese of Caledonia stretches across the northern half of British Columbia.  A member of the Council of the North, Caledonia faces challenges of geographical isolation and harsh weather. There is a need for new priests to come and serve in the historically conservative diocese. Lehmann, a graduate of Camrose Lutheran College and Wycliffe College (MDiv), told Wycliffe in an interview that he was “looking forward to…coming down to talk to students, and to do a recruiting drive with the diocese of Caledonia!”. 

Lehmann told the evangelical Anglican college, “I think it’s an exciting time because we’re not slaves to the common culture. We’re in an era when we’re rediscovering our voice as the church and as we sit in opposition to some aspects of the culture in which we find ourselves. That can be a very exciting place to be.”

When asked by the interviewer, Patricia Paddey, about the blocked consecration of Rev. Jacob Worley, he said: “I’m just very cognizant of the fact that the diocese really struggled with the failed election and having to do the process again. There are some deep wounds, and we need to work with the province to change canon laws so that that can’t happen again.”

Lehmann, who is working on a doctorate of ministry from Trinity School for Ministry in Ambridge, Pa., will be consecrated on Jan. 18, 2018 in the Cathedral Church of St. Andrew in Prince Rupert, BC.   TAP

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