GC80 Deputy Update: The Rev. Shug Goodlow - July 8
Confessions of a First Time Deputy
by the Rev. Shug Goodlow, Deputy
It is now 11:11 p.m. and I am processing all that I saw and felt today on the first day of GC80. I think it’s fair to say that I must have looked a bit like an owl. I was not sure what to expect. My head turned nearly all the way around on my neck as I took my seat in the House of Deputies. There were so many people; 799 deputies at the start.
The first event of the day was a eucharist at which I was asked to assist with communion. I went to my assigned station with a basket of wafers. I immediately sensed how grateful people were to receive communion. An especially emotional moment for me was when the Rev. Amy Chambers Cortight, former vicar of Christ Church Cathedral in St. Louis, approached me and I gave her communion. It was a special, unexpected moment between us. Presiding Bishop Curry’s sermon was pre-recorded but rousing nonetheless. When Bishop Curry said, “Remember where you came from,” it stayed with me all day. I do wish we had been allowed to sing but thanks to COVID protocols we were not allowed to do so.
The first day’s deliberations came to a screeching halt due to an internet outage which meant voting couldn’t happen. The problem was eventually resolved. Particularly emotional for me was the passage of Resolution A127 for Telling the Truth about The Episcopal Church’s History with Indigenous Boarding Schools. The vote was preceded by the testimony of several people, some of whom offered their personal stories about surviving those schools.
And now on to important matters. Restrooms and water could easily be found. We were only allowed to have beverages on the floor but had to trek two floors to get coffee. Not a great way to start the day. No food was allowed. A girl needs a cookie or a bit of chocolate now and then. On the lighter side, there is nothing quite like the sound of 800 chairs scraping against concrete floors at the same time when they’re being pushed back.
The night ended with me being deeply grateful for this experience. It is a privilege to serve The Episcopal Church in this way and I look forward to what the coming days bring.