JACKSON – Mississippi Episcopalians on Saturday elected the Rev. Brian Seage, rector of St. Columb’s Episcopal Church in Ridgeland since 2005, as their new bishop.
Clergy and lay delegates who had convened at St. Andrew’s Cathedral in Jackson elected Seage, 50, on the fifth ballot. He was one of five nominees for the post.
Seage will serve for a brief period as bishop coadjutor before succeeding the Rt. Rev. Duncan Gray III, who will retire in February 2015 as diocesan bishop. The Episcopal Diocese of Mississippi covers the entire state.
“To say that I am humbled almost beyond words is an understatement,” Seage told the assembled delegates. “I look forward to being a partner with all of you as we do God’s work in the world.”
Seage came to Mississippi from California in 1997 as rector of St. Thomas Episcopal Church in Diamondhead on the Gulf Coast. Eight years later he moved to the Ridgeland church in suburban Jackson he now leads.
He told delegates after his election that the Mississippi diocese “is a special place that I’ve come to love.”
Seage is a graduate of Pepperdine University and the Episcopal Seminary of the Southwest. He has held several diocesan leadership roles and has been a church camp director for eight years.
To be elected, Seage had to receive a majority among both clergy and lay delegates, whose votes were counted separately. He received votes of 121 of 182 cast in the lay order and 67 of 115 cast in the clergy order.