Skip to Main Content



2019 Convention

The Convention of the Episcopal Church in East Tennessee meets annually to conduct the business of the diocese. It elects diocesan leaders; ratifies a budget; accepts resolutions; hears the bishop’s annual address, handles business related to diocesan entities, and in the year before a General Convention, it elects a deputation to General Convention. It is also a family gathering of folks across our diocese. Clergy and elected delegates participate in our convention; visitors and exhibitors are welcome!.

The 35th Annual Convention of the Episcopal Church in East Tennessee #ETCON19 will take place on Friday, February 8 and Saturday, February 9, 2019 at the Holiday Inn Knoxville Downtown.

Thursday, February 7, David Burman will be ordained as a transitional deacon at St. John’s Cathedral at 7 pm. Your presence and prayers are invited!

We’re in for a huge treat Friday evening, February 8 – Nashville Songwriters in the Round:  John Tirro, Sam Gay, Templeton Thompson, and Sally Barris will be in concert! Details below.

Registration for Convention Feb. 8 & Feb. 9 is now closed

$99 Early Bird Registration – ended 5 pm November 15, 2018

$110 Standard Registration – ended 5 pm  December 1, 2018

$150 Late Registration – ended 5 pm December 15, 2018

$35  Feb. 8 Banquet Only – includes Nashville Songwriters in the Round concert (see below for details). Registration ended 5 pm January 6, 2019

*Please note that fees are non-refundable



  • Click for the Pre-Convention Meeting in Your Area!

    Watch this video with Bishop Brian and Canon Michelle to learn all about our 2019 Regional Pre-Convention Gatherings that began on Jan. 13.

    Pre-Convention Regional Gathering Dates & Locations:

    Middle East Area
    January 13 | 3-5 pm
    Good Samaritan, Knoxville

    CANCELED Upper East Area
    January 20 | 3-5 pm
    St. Christopher, Kingsport

    South East Area
    January 27 | 3-5 pm
    St. Paul, Chattanooga
    St. Paul’s will be hosting an Evensong at 5 pm – all are welcome!

    All interested parishioners who are planning to visit the convention or those who are just interested in finding out more are also welcome – all are invited to participate!

    If you’re unable to come to the meeting in your region, you are welcome at another!





  • Leaders Nominated for Election at the Convention

    Leaders to be Elected at the Convention

    Below is description of positions open and a little information about each position, followed by the nominees standing for election at our 2019 Convention.

    NOTE: It’s not too late to be nominated to serve as a leader in our diocese! You can be nominated from the floor of the convention. Click here for full information

    Bishop and Council (B&C)

    The Bishop and Council comprises the bishop, the dean of St. John’s Cathedral plus ten lay and clerical members who represent each of the three geographical areas of the diocese – two of each from the populous South East and Middle East areas and one of each from the Upper East Area.

    Each term is three years. Clergy and lay members may not be from the same parish, and members must be 18 years old or more. Bishop and Council members may not serve simultaneously on the Standing Committee. Members gather four to six times a year for meetings at the Diocesan House in Knoxville, although annual meetings may include an overnight retreat.

    “B&C” carries out the work of the Diocesan Convention between its annual meetings and oversees the program of the diocese.

    Among its responsibilities, B&C prepares the diocesan budget to be approved by Diocesan Convention and approves grants and loans recommended by the Opportunity Fund Committee. Members may serve on the Opportunity Fund and other council committees: Budget and Finance, Health Insurance, Stewardship and the Diocesan Council on Youth Ministry, or Diocesan Convention.

    A complete description of the functions of Bishop and Council and the Standing Committee are listed in the Diocesan Constitution and Canons.

    Bishop & Council, Positions Open:

    Bishop & Council positions open:
    Terms expire 2022

    1 Clergy South East Area
    1 Clergy Middle East Area
    1 Lay Middle East Area
    1 Lay South East


    The Rev. Mandy LippeRector, St. Francis Norris; Nominated by the Rt. Rev. Brian Cole, Bishop

    Mandy Lippe and her husband Jason moved to Norris in 2017 and she began serving St. Francis, Norris, as priest-in-charge in February of 2017. Mandy was installed as rector in April of 2018. Previously, she served as assistant rector of St. Thomas Episcopal Parish Church and School in Coral Gables, Florida, for 3.5 years and as Curate at St. Margaret’s in Miami Lakes, Florida, for a year. Mandy is on the Continuing Education Committee and helped with the redesign of the diocesan website and newsletter this past summer. She was appointed to fill a vacancy on Bishop and Council in 2018.



    The Rev. Jason EmersonRector, Church of the Nativity, Ft. Oglethorpe, Ga.; Nominated by the Rev. Mac Brown, Assistant to the Rector, Good Shepherd, Lookout Mountain

    Rev. Jason Emerson is the rector of the Church of the Nativity in Fort Oglethorpe, GA. He firmly believes we are fed at God’s altar so that we can go out into the world and feed others. Before answering the call to Nativity in 2017, he served for 12 years in the Diocese of Nebraska, including a stint as president of the Standing Committee and six years on their version of Bishop and Council. He is passionate about preaching, Christian formation for all ages, and equipping the saints for ministry in the world.

    Disciplinary Board

    The Disciplinary Board is comprised of seven persons, four members of the clergy and three lay. Clergy members must be canonically and geographically resident within the diocese, and lay members must be adult communicants in good standing who are geographically resident in the diocese. Members of the Standing Committee may not also be members of the Disciplinary Board. Functions of the Disciplinary Board are listed in the Canons of The Episcopal Church, Title IV. 

    Disciplinary Board Positions Open:

    Disciplinary Board positions open:
    Terms expire 2022

    2 Clergy
    1 Lay


     The Rev. Ann WeeksRetired; Good Shepherd, Lookout Mountain; Nominated by the Rev. Mac Brown, Assistant to the Rector, Good Shepherd, Lookout Mountain

    The Rev. Ann Weeks grew up in Chattanooga, graduated from UT Knoxville and owned her own interior design firm in Chattanooga until her retirement.  Ann was ordained a vocational deacon in December 2007 and served at St. Paul’s Chattanooga for 10 years, at which time she retired from parish ministry. Ann remains active in community social justice in Chattanooga. Ann and her husband Brad reside on Lookout Mountain and have two grown daughters Brooke and Sarah and three grandchildren. Ann is a Rotarian and serves on the Caldsted Foundation, Outreach Haiti & South Broad Redevelopment boards in Chattanooga.


    Mr. Greg LoveSt. Francis, Ooltewah; Nominated by Sheila Crane, Vestry member of St. Francis, Ooltewah 

    I have been a member of three different Episcopal churches over the past 30 years.  I have attended St. Francis for the past six  years, as I followed  Lou Parsons here when she became the full-time rector from Grace Church. I am the Stewardship chair, past Vestry Jr. Warden, Lay Leader, Eucharistic Minister and Lay reader.

    I have served on volunteer boards and in doing so have had the opportunity of several discipline hearings.  I would be happy to serve as needed for Bishop Brian and the diocese.


    Mr. John BellamySt. Paul, Kingsport; Nominated by the Ven. Chris Harpster, Archdeacon of the Episcopal Church in East Tennessee

    John Bellamy has been a member of St. Paul’s in Kingsport for more than 30 years. In the past three he has served on the vestry, chaired the Finance Committee, co-chaired the Annual Christmas Dinner, and served on other committees. He is currently a Licensed Lay Worship Leader, Eucharistic Minister, Lector and member of the Discernment Committee. He is preparing to be a Licensed Lay Pastoral Care leader. John served on the Bishop Search Committee for the diocese and chaired an annual convention. He is married to Tim Bradshaw and has two sons, Rhys and Rowan.

    Standing Committee

    The Standing Committee serves as a council of advice to the bishop. Among its responsibilities, it gives consent for all bishops elected in The Episcopal Church, recommends individuals for ordination, and advises on the purchase, sale or encumbrance of any diocesan property or property held by a congregation or ministry of the diocese. In the event the diocese is without a bishop, the Standing Committee serves as the ecclesiastical authority until the diocese elects a new bishop.

    The Standing Committee schedules monthly meetings, but sometimes it conducts business via e-mail or conference call.

    The Standing Committee has six members, three clergy and three lay. One clergy and one lay member rotate off each year. Each member’s term is three years, and they may be re-elected for one successive term. Members of the Standing Committee may not serve simultaneously on the Bishop and Council, Commission on Ministry or Disciplinary Board.

    Standing Committee Open Positions

    Terms expiring 2022:

    1 Clergy
    1 Lay


    The Rev. Jay MillsRetired, St. Paul, Kingsport; Nominated by the Rev. Maggie Zeller, Rector, St. Christopher, Kingsport

    I graduated from West Virginia Wesleyan College in 1976 and from the Virginia Theological Seminary in 1980. I continued my education with Classical Greek at Marshall University and East Tennessee State University. I have served 11 churches in the Dioceses of West Virginia, South West Virginia, and East Tennessee – many of them interim positions. I am married to the love of my life and we have two children, Sarah (age 29) and Jamie (age 35). I love water sports, shooting, hunting, youth work, preaching and teaching. I am currently an adjunct professor at Tusculum College.


    Ms. Elizabeth JonesGood Shepherd, Lookout Mountain; Nominated by the Rev. Mac Brown, Assistant to the Rector, Good Shepherd, Lookout Mountain

    As a member of Good Shepherd in Chattanooga I have been involved in many ways.  I have also had the wonderful privilege of serving on the Standing Committee for the past three years. My first meeting was an announcement of Bishop George’s retirement. I asked myself what I had signed up for?! I signed up for many blessings and meeting so many wonderful people. I think continuity is very important in such a position and I would like to follow through with what we have started. I hope to continue to serve you all for the next three years.


    Trustee, University of the South

    Two lay people and one member of the clergy serve on the Board of Trustees of the University of the South. The term of office is three years, and trustees can be re-elected for one successive term. One trustee rotates off each year.

    Trustees are expected to attend the annual board meeting each May and any special meetings that may occur throughout the year. Trustees should be personally committed to the basic aims of the university. They are responsible for informing their dioceses about the university and should be willing to contribute to its financial well being.

    Trustee position open:

    Term expires 2022

    1 Lay

    Mr. Troy Eichenberger – Christ Church, Chattanooga; Nominated by Joel King, Vestry member, Christ Church, Chattanooga

    Troy has a B. S. in mathematics from University of the South, and currently serves as an active Lay Diocesan Trustee working on the New Trustee Orientation and University Relations Committees ensuring trustees and alumni are aware of the University mission as well as ways to contribute to its success. During this term, the University has made great strides in its capital campaign and vision toward student and seminary growth. He is a senior program manager at the Tennessee Valley Authority. A member of Christ Church Chattanooga, he has served on the vestry, the finance committee, treasurer, and as Eucharistic Minister. He is a board member of Project Canterbury as well as an alternate lay deputy to the 2018 General Convention.


    Dr. Lee PhillipsSt. John Johnson City; Nominated by Mr. John Nagy, Vestry member, St. John, Johnson City

    Lee Phillips served two terms as a Sewanee trustee, from 2010 to 2016; during this time, she was a member of the Community Relations Committee. She graduated from Sewanee in 1991 with a B. A. in English literature, and she holds a master’s degree and doctorate (1998) in English literature from Vanderbilt University. For 21 years, she has attended St. John’s in Johnson City, where she is currently a member of the Search Committee for a new rector. She is an EfM graduate and has mentored the EfM group at St. John’s for 10 years. Dr. Phillips and her husband Will (Sewanee c’91) have two children, Catherine (a freshman in college) and Wyatt (a sophomore in high school).

  • Resolutions


    Resolution #03

    To authorize the Bishop, Clergy and People of East Tennessee to enter into a formal companion relationship with the Missionary Diocese of Kondoa, Tanzania, East Africa 

    PROPOSED BY: Rev. J.W. (Cal) Calhoun

    REPRESENTATIVE AT CONVENTION: The Rev. J.W. (Cal) Calhoun, Rector, Good Samaritan, Knoxville 

    RESOLVED, That the 34th Convention of the Diocese of East Tennessee authorizes and encourages Bishop Cole, the clergy and the people of this diocese to take all steps necessary to enter into a formal Companion Relationship with the Missionary Diocese of Kondoa, Tanzania, East Africa. 


    The Rt. Reverend Dr. Given Gaula and his wife the Reverend Lillian Gaula have been called by God through Christ to serve as missionaries to the peoples of Kondoa, an impoverished area in Central Tanzania, East Africa that is historically and predominantly unfamiliar with the Good News of Christ.

    Bishop Gaula and Rev. Lillian Gaula have labored with the inspiration of the Holy Spirit to such good effect that the Anglican Church in Kondoa has grown from 9000 members in 2012 to 15,000 members in 2017.

    During the past four years Bishop Gaula and Rev. Lillian Gaula have visited the Diocese of East Tennessee and preached the Good News of Christ at St Paul’s, Chattanooga; The Church of the Ascension, Knoxville; The Church of the Good Samaritan, Knoxville; St James, Knoxville; The Church of the Good Shepherd, Knoxville and the Episcopal School of Knoxville and have also visited and met with leaders of All Saints, Morristown, All Saints Episcopal School Morristown, the Episcopal School of Knoxville and the Episcopal Church Women.

    Beginning in 2014 and continuing to the present time, members of Grace Church, Chattanooga; St Paul’s, Chattanooga; St Stephen’s, Oak Ridge; Ascension, Good Samaritan, Good Shepherd, and St John’s Cathedral, all in Knoxville, St Clare’s, LaFollette; and All Saints, Morristown, have journeyed to Kondoa to worship with the Anglican peoples of Kondoa and they have returned spiritually refreshed and invigorated by the warmth and enthusiasm of our faithful brothers and sisters in Christ in Kondoa, Tanzania, East Africa.

    Before he retired, Bishop George. D. Young III met with Bishop Given Gaula on two occasions and determined that the Christian friendships that had begun to grow between our Diocese and the Missionary Diocese of Kondoa were Spirit filled and worthy of support and recognition by the Diocese of East Tennessee.

    In 2018, Bishop Brian L. Cole led a group of ten clergy and members of the diocese to the Missionary Diocese of Kondoa to participate in the ordination of the first female deacons in Kondoa. Another group of clergy and members will return to Kondoa in June 2019 to participate in the ordination of these deacons as the first female priests in Kondoa.

    This resolution has no financial impact on the diocese or its congregations.

    Click here for a PDF of Resolution 2019-03.

    Please note that resolutions pertaining to the Constitution and Canons of the Diocese of East Tennessee will be posted soon.


  • Guidelines for Submitting a Resolution After Jan. 6

    How to Write a Resolution


    Any Delegate, Vestry, Area Commission, the Bishop and Council, the Chancellor, the Chair of the Committee on Constitution and Canons, and the Registrar of the diocese may submit resolutions for consideration by the Convention by delivering them to the Secretary of the Convention at least thirty days prior to the date set for the Convention. They may also introduce resolutions at the Convention in accordance with the Rules of Order.


    After January 6, 2019, resolutions may be submitted from the convention floor. Bring 300 copies of the resolution for distribution at the convention. These copies should be given to Canon Michelle Bolt before the start of business on Friday, Feb. 8.


    Give the 300 copies of the resolution to Canon Michelle Bolt before the start of convention business on Friday, Feb. 8.


    All elements must be included in the resolution.

    Reasons and justifications for resolutions should be included in an explanation following the resolution, so it is clear that a vote is being taken only on the substance of the resolution. A “whereas clause” should not be used.

    A. The Title

    B. Very brief summary of the purpose of the resolution

    C. The Resolution
    The word “Resolved” is capitalized and underlined, and it is followed by a comma and the word “That,” which is capitalized. Each resolving paragraph may end with a period or with a semicolon and the words “and be it further.” NOTE: “Therefore be it” and “and be it further” end a clause. They are not used at the beginning of a “Resolved” clause.

    D. The Explanation
    Here should be clearly and succinctly set forth the reasons for the proposed action called for in the resolution, and the anticipated financial impact (if any) on the diocese or congregations.

    Resolutions of Courtesy or Appreciation, which are written to be read aloud, may have “whereas clauses,” but they should not include an explanation following the resolution. The form is the same as for resolutions.

    Please be sure to include your name, e-mail address and phone number (or that of your group’s representative) in your proposed resolution.

    AFTER JANUARY 6, 2019

    Proposed resolutions must be received at Diocesan House no later than Jan. 6, 2019 to be posted on our convention website and included in convention packet.

    Resolutions proposed after Jan. 6, will be made from the floor of convention. Bring 300 copies of the resolution for distribution to convention participants – given to the Secretary of the Convention before the start of business on Friday, Feb. 8.


    Here are guidelines, including a sample, for writing and submitting a resolution to download or print:

  • Nashville Songwriters in the Round in Concert Friday Evening Feb. 8!


    Join us Friday February 8 for a music-filled evening with Nashville Songwriters in the Round: John Tirro, Sam Gay, Templeton Thompson, and Sally Barris!

    Prior to becoming campus pastor at Tyson  House (UT-Knoxville), John Tirro had a first career as a songwriter with radio hits and songs on Gold, Platinum, and Multi-Platinum albums. February 8, John will be joined by three friends from Nashville, to give an intimate concert of songs.

    Tirro says, “Sam is my oldest friend from Nashville, and the first song we wrote, ‘Me and the Moon,’ was recorded by Bryan White and led to everything else I had recorded. Templeton is Sam’s wife and a strong writer and singer, and Sally is a wonderful friend, singer, and writer as well. Among us, we’ve had songs recorded by Rascal Flatts, LeAnn Rimes, Diamond Rio, Bryan White, Montgomery Gentry, Kathy Mattea, Jo Dee Messina, Little Texas, Ricky Van Shelton, Sweethearts of the Rodeo, Trisha Yearwood, John Michael Montgomery, Lee Ann Womack, Patty Page, Johnny Rodriguez, Reba McEntire, and Martina McBride — and some of the best are ones that never got recorded! One sweet thing about an ‘In the Round’ format — four writers in the middle of the room, facing one another, taking turns telling stories and playing songs with the audience at cafe-style tables around them — is the intimacy. It’s a great way to hear songs and get to know the people who wrote them!”

    The concert will follow our Feb. 8 Friday evening banquet. You are welcome to join us for the Friday evening meal and attend the concert even if you are not participating in the convention. Register for the meal and concert here.

    Music and information about the songwriters may be found on their websites:

    John Tirro
    Sally Barris
    Templeton Thompson
    Sam Gay can be found on Templeton Thompson’s site

  • Book a Room

    To make a reservation at the Holiday Inn Knoxville Downtown:

    *Please note that the group discount is guaranteed only through January 6, 2019.