Rochester Taps Burrill as Bishop-coadjutor

Episcopal News Service. November 10, 1983 [83204]

ROCHESTER, N.Y. (DPS, Nov. 10) -- It took nearly five months and 18 ballots, but the Diocese of Rochester now has a bishop-coadjutor elect. He is the Ven. William G. Burrill, archdeacon of the Diocese of Northern California, and he was chosen Nov. 5 when the original electing convention reconvened.

The son of the retired bishop of Chicago, the Rt. Rev. Gerald F. Burrill, he was one of five priests over whom the original convention deadlocked on June 18. Diocesan Bishop Robert Rae Spears adjourned that session after eight ballots had failed to produce a clear leader in the clerical order. New York Archdeacon Robert Willing held a majority in the lay order at adjournment.

Willing's support continued through much of the reconvened session last week, but began to slip after Burrill showed gains in clerical support. Burrill was elected on ballot 18.

A native of New York, the bishop-elect is a graduate of the University of the South and General Theological Seminary. He has also studied at Cambridge University. Ordained in 1959, he has served the Diocese of Northern California since 1962 as vicar, then rector of the Church of St. Martin in Davis and in campus ministry at the University of California there. He became archdeacon of the diocese last year.

A deputy to five General Conventions and the Nairobi assembly of the World Council of Churches and former secretary of diocesan convention, Burrill is also active in ecumenical affairs and serves on the executive committee of the Episcopal Diocesan Ecumenical Officers. He has been a member of the Program, Budget and Finance Committee of General Convention since 1979 and was named chairman of its executive committee this year.

Once the required consents are received he will be consecrated and join Spears in pastoral oversight of the 20,000-member diocese in upstate New York. He will have charge of the candidates, education, stewardship and peace and justice issues. Spears expects to retire in mid-1984 at which time Burrill would automatically succeed as diocesan.