William H. Love

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The Right Reverend

William H. Love
IX Bishop of Albany
ChurchEpiscopal Church (United States)
In office2007–present
PredecessorDaniel W. Herzog
Consecration16 September 2006
by Frank Griswold
Personal details
Born (1957-08-14) August 14, 1957 (age 62)

William Howard Love (born August 14, 1957, in Dallas, Texas) is the ninth and current Bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Albany. A theological conservative, he is a prominent leader of conservative Episcopalians at a time of disunity and disagreement in the Episcopal Church over issues surrounding human sexuality and the blessing of same-sex unions.

Early education, career, and marriage[edit]

According to the Episcopal Diocese of Albany, Love is a Texas native; he earned a Bachelor of Arts in journalism from Southwest Texas State in 1980, a Master of Science degree in education from the State University of New York-Plattsburgh in 1988,[1] and a Master's degree in Divinity in 1991 from Nashotah House.[2] Prior to becoming a priest, he served as an intelligence officer in the Air Force.[2] Love was ordained a deacon in 1991 and a priest in 1992.[2] He served as rector of St. Mary's Church in Lake Luzerne, New York for 14 years.[2] Love has been married to retired Air Force Colonel Karen Love since 1983; the Loves have two children and several grandchildren.[2]

Bishop of Albany[edit]

Location of the Diocese of Albany

After several ballots in a highly contested election,[citation needed] Love was elected bishop coadjutor of the Episcopal Diocese of Albany on March 25, 2006;[3] he received the consent of the General Convention that summer in Columbus, Ohio.[4][5][6][failed verification] Love was consecrated as bishop coadjutor by Presiding Bishop Frank Griswold on September 16, 2006 at the Empire State Plaza in Albany.[7][3] Amongst the co-consecrators and con-celebrants were Daniel W. Herzog, Eighth Bishop of Albany; David J. Bena, Bishop Suffragan of Albany; David Standish Ball, Seventh Bishop of Albany; and Harold Miller, Bishop of Down and Dromore in Ireland.[4][dead link][8]

On February 4, 2007, Love was installed as the ninth bishop of Albany.[2]

Views on the Bible, marriage, and sexuality[edit]

Love has consistently stood for an orthodox view of the Bible and for the stance of the Anglican Communion on matters of human sexuality.[9] He asserts that "'the Bible is, in fact, the word of God. It’s not just some historic document that was written some 2,000-plus years ago, but [is] God’s revealed word.'"[9] In his own words:

The Diocese of Albany, as demonstrated by the results of the Primates’ meeting, stands in the mainstream of Anglican life and teaching. By the grace of God, we will continue to do so. Keeping our focus on Jesus Christ, it is imperative that we reach out to one another in Christian love and charity, treating all people with dignity and respect. As Brothers and Sisters in Christ, we are called by our Lord to be obedient to the Great Commandment and the Great Commission, sharing the Gospel of Jesus Christ, with all who will receive it. I ask for the prayers of each member of this Diocese as we continue to move forward in answer to our Lord’s call. May God use each one of us as an instrument of His love and healing grace in this torn and broken world.[10][11]

Regarding marriage, Love has stated his adherence to the orthodox interpretation of the Scripture which holds that sexual intimacy is reserved for marriage and that marriage is an opposite-sex union. Love takes the view that homosexually-oriented persons should remain celibate.[9]

On January 19, 2008, Love celebrated the Eucharist at St. Andrew's Church in Albany while hosting a visit by Bonnie Anderson, president of the Episcopal Church's House of Deputies. A dialogue followed between progressives from Via Media and the more conservative representatives of the church, and "stressed unity and communication". Both liberals and conservatives in the diocese praised Love for attending the event.[12][13][14] The national church's web site posted a story about the event, quoting Bishop Love and several of the 300 attendees at the event.[15]

In June 2008, under Love's leadership, the Episcopal Diocese of Albany passed a resolution stating that only heterosexual marriages may be celebrated within the diocese.[16] After the resolution was passed, Bishop Love was quoted as stating that "the important thing ... is that God loves all people, regardless of where they might be in their life. That doesn't necessarily mean he approves of all of our behaviors."[16]

In July 2009, Love gained national attention when he explained his views at the Episcopal Church's convention in Anaheim, California.[17] At a news conference organized by conservatives at that meeting, Love said, "It is breaking my heart to see the church destroy itself"; however, he vowed to remain within the Episcopal Church nonetheless.[17] Love continued to be in the news in October 2009, when he commented on the state of the church after the Vatican, in the apostolic constitution Anglicanorum coetibus, announced a canonical framework to integrate groups of disaffected Anglicans into the Roman Catholic Church.[18] Love was quoted as saying, "What state we are in when we get through this, only God knows ..."[18] He also acknowledged that two parishes in the Diocese of Albany were attempting to leave the Episcopal Church.[18] Since that time, no parishes in the Episcopal Diocese of Albany have left the Episcopal Church, and Love has granted Delegated Ecclesiastical Parish Oversight (DEPO)--a status where certain parishes remain a part of the Albany diocese, but receive certain pastoral functions from a bishop outside the diocese—to three parishes in the Diocese. The parishes receiving DEPO are St. Luke's, Saranac Lake, St. George's, Schenectady, and St. John's, Essex.[19][20]

Love was the only Episcopal bishop in New York State to oppose the passage of the Marriage Equality Act.[21]

Love is a member of Communion Partners, an Episcopalian group which opposed the 77th General Episcopal Convention's decision to authorize the blessing of same-sex marriages in 2012.[22][better source needed] In 2015, the General Convention of the Episcopal Church "sanctioned gay marriage across the American church but [allowed] the bishops of eight dioceses [including Albany] to opt out." In July 2018, the General Convention of the Episcopal Church passed a resolution allowing same-sex weddings to be performed in the eight dissenting dioceses.[9] Love strongly opposed the resolution.[9] In November 2018, he issued a pastoral directive banning same-sex weddings from being held in the Episcopal Diocese of Albany;[23] in an accompanying letter, Love wrote: "Recent statistics show that The Episcopal Church is spiraling downward... I can’t help but believe that God has removed His blessing from this Church. Unless something changes, The Episcopal Church is going to die."[24]

He was the only bishop of the Episcopal Church to have attended GAFCON III, held in Jerusalem, on 17–22 June 2018.[25]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "ALBANY: William Howard Love consecrated bishop coadjutor". Episcopal Church. September 24, 2006.
  2. ^ a b c d e f "Our Bishop – Episcopal Diocese of Albany". albanyepiscopaldiocese.org.
  3. ^ a b https://www.episcopalchurch.org/library/article/albany-william-howard-love-consecrated-bishop-coadjutor
  4. ^ a b Albany Episcopalian official web site. Accessed January 22, 2008.[dead link]
  5. ^ Episcopal News Service official web site. Accessed January 22, 2008.[dead link]
  6. ^ Report of Bishop Bishop Ken Price of Southern Ohio. Accessed January 22, 2008.
  7. ^ video and link to Anglican TV web site. Accessed January 22, 2008.
  8. ^ Other Episcopal bishops present were Gladstone B. Adams, III, Bishop of Central New York, Peter H. Beckwith, Bishop of Springfield (Illinois); Robert W. Duncan, then-Bishop of Pittsburgh; Henry Scriven, Assistant Bishop of Pittsburgh; Gordon P. Scruton, Bishop of Western Massachusetts; and Mark S. Sisk, Bishop of New York. Howard James Hubbard, Roman Catholic Bishop of Albany, was also in attendance. q.v. at [1].[dead link]
  9. ^ a b c d e Biancolli, Amy (September 1, 2018). "Facing a schism: A bishop, gay marriage and the Episcopal diocese of Albany". Times Union. Retrieved December 5, 2018.
  10. ^ Classical Anglicanism on line. Accessed January 22, 2008.
  11. ^ Albany Episcopal Diocese official web site. Accessed January 22, 2008.
  12. ^ Marc Parry, "A fractured church seeking common faith: Episcopal leaders discuss -- and disagree on -- the role of gays in their communion," Albany Times Union, January 20, 2008, found at "A fractured church seeking common faith" in the Albany Times Union. Accessed January 22, 2008.
  13. ^ Marc Parry, "Episcopal aide seeks to mend relations: House of Deputies president visits Albany as church faces rift", Albany Times Union, January 18, 2008, found at "Episcopal aide" in the Albany Times Union. Accessed January 22, 2008.
  14. ^ Marc Parry, "Key U.S. Episcopalian to speak in Albany", Albany Times Union, January 17, 2008, found at "Key U.S. Episcopalian to speak in Albany" in the Albany Times Union. Accessed January 22, 2008.
  15. ^ Mary Frances Schjonberg, "Bonnie Anderson encourages open conversation in Albany diocese; Communication must remain focused on unity in Christ, Bishop Love says," Episcopal News Service, January 22, 2008, found at Episcopal Church USA Official web site. Accessed January 23, 2008.
  16. ^ a b http://timesunion.com/AspStories/story.asp?storyID=694502&category=REGION&newsdate=6/8/2008
  17. ^ a b Laurie Dotson, "Pared-Down Episcopal Church Is Looking to Grow Through ‘Inclusivity’", New York Times, July 19, 2009, found at New York Times article of July 19, 2009. Accessed July 22, 2009.
  18. ^ a b c New York Times and Albany Times Union staff reports, "Vatican to ease rules on Anglicans", Albany Times Union, October 21, 2009, p. A5, col. 1, found at Albany Times Union website. Accessed October 21, 2009.
  19. ^ Crowe, Kenneth C. III, "Bishop: Episcopal Church Must Change," Albany Times Union, May 4, 2012, found at Albany Times Union website. Accessed October 23, 2012.
  20. ^ Love, The Rt. Rev. William, "Delegated Episcopal Pastoral Oversight (DEPO) in the Diocese of Albany," The Albany Episcopalian, May 2012, found at 'Episcopal Diocese of Albany' website. Accessed October 23, 2012.
  21. ^ Love, William H. (June 30, 2011). "Episcopal Albany Bishop Rejects NY Same-Sex Legislation". virtueonline.org. Retrieved 2017-09-22.
  22. ^ http://www.communionpartners.org/wp-content/uploads/2011/10/Bishops-Communion-Partners-June-2014.pdf
  23. ^ Stanforth, Lauren; Moench, Mallory (November 11, 2018). "Albany Episcopal Bishop outlaws same-sex marriage in his churches". Times Union.
  24. ^ "Bishop Bill Love: No to Same-Sex Marriages in Episcopal Diocese of Albany". November 16, 2018.
  25. ^ "Chairman's Advent Letter | GAFCON". www.gafcon.org.

See also[edit]

Episcopal Church (USA) titles
Preceded by
Daniel W. Herzog
9th Bishop of Albany
2007 to present
Succeeded by