The 42nd Convention of the Episcopal Diocese of West Tennessee

Friday, November 17, 2023

Saint John's Episcopal Church | 3245 Central Ave.; Memphis, TN 38111


The 42nd Annual Convention of the Episcopal Diocese of West Tennessee will convene at Saint John’s Episcopal Church on November 17, 2023. We are grateful for our host, Saint John’s, for the hospitality and graciousness that they have already extended as we prepare for Convention.

Let us continually offer a sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruit of lips that confess his name. Do not neglect to do good and to share what you have, for such sacrifices are pleasing to God.
(Hebrews 13:15-16) 

Service Project

During Convention, all participants will be invited to engage in a service project for Community Alliance for the Homeless (CAFTH). The project, which will be be held in Saint John’s parish hall, will include assembling backpacks with supplies that will be given out during the coldest winter months to neighbors experiencing homelessness in Memphis and Shelby County.

CAFTH is a private, non-profit organization that supports public and private agencies working to end homelessness in Memphis and Shelby County. Representatives from CAFTH will be with us during Convention in the Exhibitor Hall to provide more information about the scope of their work.

The offering collected during the Friday morning Convention Eucharist will be given to CAFTH.

Please come ready to “do good and share what you have.”


Childcare During Convention

Saint John’s will have nursery workers available to provide childcare on November 17. To help us plan for adequate staffing, please contact Antoinette Cheney ( with the name(s) and age(s) of your children. The deadline to request childcare is November 1, 2023.

Who May Attend Convention

Anyone may attend Diocesan Convention. Convention is Registration is required for all Diocesan Convention attendees.

Please note: All voting members of the Convention, as well as alternates, will need an electronic device with access to the Internet to vote (for example, a smart phone, laptop, iPad or tablet). Please inform your delegation of this requirement and encourage them to borrow an electronic device for the day if they do not own one.

  • Faith Community Registration. Clergy serving faith communities, lay delegates, and lay alternates should register as a group with their faith community. 
  • Individual Registration. Anyone who is not registering as part of a faith community should register as an individual. Guests and clergy who are not canonically resident or licensed in the Diocese may observe the proceedings of Diocesan Convention, but they will not have voice or vote.
  • Exhibitors. Please click here for full information about being an exhibitor at Convention. 

Delegation Sizes

The number of delegates a Faith Community may send to Diocesan Convention is determined by Diocesan Canon 1.7. Based upon the Average Sunday Attendance (ASA) set forth in the Faith Community’s 2022 Parochial Report, the Faith Community may register the following number of delegates: 

ASA 1-50 = 2 Delegates 
ASA 51-100 = 3 Delegates 
ASA 101-200 = 4 Delegates 
ASA 201-300 = 5 Delegates 
ASA 301 and above = 6 Delegates 


A Faith Community may also register up to an equal number of alternates.  



Clergy & Lay Delegate: $100/ person
Alternate Lay Delegate $65/ person
Non-Stipendiary, Retired, Non-Parochial & Licensed Clergy: $65/ person
Guests: $65/ person

Registration Deadline

The deadline for registration is October 16, 2023. 

If a Faith Community has already registered and needs to add one or more persons, please click on Convention Registration and register the person(s). If the person(s) being registered are replacing someone who was previously registered,  you should also send an email to letting us know who is being added and who is being replaced so we can remove the person(s) being replaced from our registration list. 

Elective Offices and Nominees

Each year, lay persons and clergy are encouraged to run for diocesan positions and participate in Diocesan Convention as delegates.  The church functions at her best when there is collegiality and collaboration from throughout the Diocese. We want our diocesan bodies to reflect a variety of perspectives from the 21 counties in West Tennessee where our congregations are located.

If you have never considered serving on a diocesan committee, talk with your clergy person or one of your wardens to learn more about this important work.  We need your voice at the table.

Nomination Form Instructions:

  • Please select the office below for which you are making a nomination and download the form.
  • Please obtain the nominee’s signature (electronic signatures are acceptable) and biography.
  • Submit the completed form and biography (Word document) to the Rev. Sharon Alexander, Canon to the Ordinary:

Nominations will continue to be received until the deadline of Thursday, November 16, 2023 at 12 p.m.; however, the deadline for nominations to be included in the Convention booklet and the website is November 3, 2023.

Nominees for Election

Bishop and Council

Lay, Term Expiring 2026

Patricia Easley

Member, Grace Episcopal Church (Paris)

Dr. Patricia (Patty) Easley has been a professor of Physical Therapy at Jackson State Community College in the Physical Therapist Assistant program for 21 years. She currently serves on the Tennessee Council of Academic Physical Therapy as the PTA Representative. She also currently serves on the Tennessee Consortium of International Education’s Advisory Board. In addition to her full-time teaching load for JSCC, she will be teaching a medical terminology course to Tennessee community college students in The Alps in the summer of 2024. A resident of Huntingdon, she is a communicant of Grace Church in Paris where she is an occasional soprano soloist and flautist. For relaxation, she enjoys hiking, kayaking, and spending time on the farm with her family and animals.

Clergy, Term Expiring 2027

The Rev. Paul McLain

Clergy, Calvary Episcopal Church (Memphis)

The Reverend Paul McLain has served as associate rector of Calvary, Memphis since September 2015. At the diocesan level, he is a member of the Church Home Board and Endowment Corporation Board. Paul was diocesan delegate to the Province IV racial healing pilgrimage in 2019. He is chaplain for the diocesan Daughters of the King and JOY chapter of DoK at Calvary. Paul is past president of the Downtown Churches Association and member of the Memphis Christian Pastors Network. He is a tutor for Literacy Mid-South. Paul served on the Commission on Ministry in the Diocese of Kansas and Board of Trustees in the Diocese of Arkansas. Prior to ordination, his previous careers were in construction management and community development. Paul is married to Ruthie McLain, an attorney, who serves on the Standing Committee and Committee on Constitution & Canons, and started Baseball with the Bishop!

Lay, Term Expiring 2027

Ebet Peeples

Member, Calvary Episcopal Church (Memphis)

Ebet Peeples has served Calvary Church for 24 years as the Assistant to the Rector for Welcome and Community, where she greets visitors and welcomes newcomers into the life of the parish. Ebet also coordinates parish sacraments and services including baptisms, weddings, and funerals. Ebet has served as a faculty member for Church Pension Group Clergy Wellness (CREDO) conferences since 2010 and has presented on the topic of evangelism and new member incorporation at Episcopal Parish Network (formerly CEEP) conferences, at an Evangelism Matters conference, and at Mary Parmer’s Invite • Welcome • Connect Summit. In the diocese, Ebet has served on the St. Columba board and on the Commission on Ministry. Outside of church, she serves as Assistant-Cubmaster of GSL’s Cub Scout Pack 34. Ebet has a BA in Justice from The American University in Washington, DC. She and her husband Clayton are the parents of Ella and Jack.

Disciplinary Board

Clergy, Term Expiring 2025

The Rev. Dr. Randy McCloy

Deacon, Church of the Holy Communion (Memphis)

The Rev. Randy McCloy was born and raised in Memphis, educated in Memphis public schools, and then attended Yale University, Rhodes College, and received medical training at UTCHS, with fellowship training at the Mayo Clinic. He served two years in the US Army (1967-69), including one year in Viet Nam. He had a medical practice in gastroenterology until 2013. Randy has been a member of Church of Holy Communion since 1980, serving on two vestries, and as Senior Warden in 2006. He attended Memphis Theological Seminary (2007-2010) and was ordained a deacon in November 2009. He served at St. Andrews Episcopal Church in 2010, and has been at Holy Communion since then. With the Bishop’s permission, he has served at Immanuel/LaGrange since 2011. 

Lay, Term Expiring 2025

Nedra Wick

Member, Grace-St. Luke’s Episcopal Church (Memphis)

Nedra has been an attorney/mediator/arbitrator/guardian ad litem for over 40 years and since 2000 has owned and operated her own law firm. She has been an active Episcopalian since 1996. At All Saint’s – Atlanta, she served as a lector, Eucharistic minister, and verger. From 2004 – 2006, she chaired the Mark Emory Graham Chapter of the Verger’s Guild and assisted the Diocese of Atlanta to expand the ministry through greater exposure and in-person training in the parishes. After her term of office ended, Nedra continued to serve as a verger with the Diocese and the Bishop of Atlanta. As a member of the Diocesan Disciplinary Committee, Nedra used her skills as an attorney, mediator and verger to assist with challenging cases. She became an associate with the Sisters of St. Mary – Sewanee in 2000 on the Feast Day of St. Francis. In 2019, she and her spouse of over 30 years, Rebecca, moved to Memphis where they found a home with Grace-St. Luke’s. When they are not sitting in the pew together, look for Nedra to be serving as a verger and Rebecca as a lector.

Clergy, Term Expiring 2026

Two Clergy to be Elected

The Rev. Jay Biedenharn

Rector, Saint John’s Episcopal Church (Memphis)

Father Jay has served as rector of Saint John’s Episcopal Church since 2019. When growing up in Vicksburg, Mississippi, Jay would have never dreamt that one day he’d be an Episcopal priest living in Memphis. It’s a great story and he’d love to tell you about it. When he’s not doing the life-giving and sacred work of a parish priest, you’ll find him learning how to swing a tennis racquet or fishing rod. Father Jay believes words matter, so you’ll usually find him reading something. Jay, his wife, Louise, and their two daughters live in Central Gardens in Memphis.

The Rev. Jeff Marx

Rector, St. Andrews Episcopal Church (Collierville)

I have served as a priest in this diocese since 1999, twenty-two of those years as rector of St. Andrews. I am an MSSW and worked ten years at Youth Villages as a counselor and Director of Training and Performance Improvement. I would seek to serve with honesty, fairness and in the spirit of Christ if elected .

Lay, Term Expiring 2026

Ben Adams

Member, Church of the Holy Communion (Memphis)

Ben Adams is a long-time member, former Senior Warden and Capital Campaign Chairman for Church of the Holy Communion. In the Diocese, he has served as a trustee of St. Mary’s Episcopal School and as a member of the Search and Nominating Committee for our fourth Bishop. Professionally, Ben is a practicing attorney with special focus on matters of estate and corporate law. He was Chairman of his firm, Baker Donelson, for a combined total of 21 years and currently serves as its Chairman Emeritus. He is a past director of the Memphis Chamber of Commerce and a past Chairman of Memphis Tomorrow, an association of the CEOs of Memphis’ largest enterprises who collaborate for the betterment of the city.

University of the South Trustee

Clergy, Term Expiring 2027

The Rev. Lisa McIndoo

Rector, Church of the Holy Apostles (Collierville)

The Rev. Lisa McIndoo graduated from The School of Theology at the University of the South in 2016 earning a Masters in Divinity. She and her family stayed in Sewanee until 2017 as Lisa served a small parish (St. John the Baptist) at the bottom of the mountain in Battle Creek, Tennessee. Her husband, Bill, worked at the University in Marketing and Communications and her son, Noah, graduated from Sewanee in 2019. The McIndoo’s visit the Holy Mountain frequently and were recently present at All Saints for Noah’s wedding to his college sweetheart.

“Driving through the gates of the Domain never fails to put a lump in my throat. It is holy ground for us and for so many people that visit. I am excited about the future of the University and I am proud to call Sewanee my alma mater.”

Rules of Order, Constitution, and Canons

The Committee on Constitution and Canons held an online hearing on October 19 and has made revisions to the proposed amendments to the Constitution and  Canons. The Committee has updated its report to explain the changes made. Click here to view the revised report. 

If you would like to review a recording of the hearing, please send an email to

The resolutions, as revised after the hearing, are linked below.

November 16 at noon is the deadline for submitting additional resolutions or amendments to any of the resolutions listed above. Any additional resolutions or amendments to resolutions will require a vote of 2/3 of the Convention to be considered, in addition to meeting other requirements set forth in the Rules of Order. Forms for submitting resolutions and amendments are linked below.