September 16, 2017
Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
When I left on sabbatical in April, I said to you that one of the things I would be doing during that time was praying and thinking about my retirement as Bishop of Western New York.
I want to share with you that I have made the decision to retire on April 3, 2019, which is the date required by the current Canons of the Episcopal Church.
I count it as one of the greatest privileges of my life that I serve you and the Church as the 11th Bishop of Western New York. It is a joy and pleasure to walk closely with each of your congregations and to see the Gospel of Christ manifested in so many places and in so many ways in our region.
I am so grateful for the support of our clergy and lay people in all of the ministries, projects and initiatives that we have done together.
I look forward to the next 18 months of continuing on this journey with all of you. I have returned from sabbatical full of energy and ideas that we will explore together over that time.
I have set a new duck goal of 1517 to honor the start of the Protestant Reformation, so I assume that I will continue to be given ducks on all of my travels.
Yours in Christ,
+R. William Franklin
Bishop Franklin shared this announcement at the joint overnight of the clergy of the Diocese of Western New York and Northwestern Pennsylvania held this weekend. With the consent of both Standing Committees, Bishops Franklin and Rowe discussed with clergy a plan for the two dioceses to consider the possibility of a shared future.
More information about this proposal will be shared in the coming week and at Convention Preseason meetings.