David Earle Bailey
Humble listener, comforter, mentor, companion, respecter of all persons. You are servant leader for people whose experience of life and of church is not necessarily shared by the majority.
Ordained priest in Arizona following your studies at Seminary of the Southwest, your ministry has included work in parishes, missions, camps, campus ministries, and diocesan centers. You are known by priests, deacons, and laity as the go to person for support at times of confusion and pain. You are a trusted upholder of the dignity of all persons, passionate about Native American ministry and about the Church’s response to racism.
While serving as rector of St. Stephen’s Episcopal Church, Phoenix, you chaired Native American Ministries in the Diocese of Arizona and were diocesan liaison to Navajoland. Located in parts of the dioceses of Utah, Arizona and Rio Grande, Navajoland is the only area mission in the Episcopal Church and its border is contiguous with that of the Navajo Nation.
Your knowledge and love for the Diné, or Navajo people, and your humble and capable administrative talents, led to your appointment as diocesan liaison to Navajoland to give administrative assistance to Bishop Steven Plummer, the first Navajo ordained a priest and the first to serve in the House of Bishops.
Carolyn Tanner Irish, bishop of the Diocese of Utah, called you to be canon missioner and then canon to the ordinary. You provided a diocesan presence to congregations all over the diocese especially important during a decade of building and renovation of church buildings to make them safe and welcoming. Your knowledge of the congregations equipped you to help them focus and prioritize projects. You promoted young adult ministries and championed “Youth Impact” a community wide program offering a safe place after school for kids to study, serve and receive mentoring and support.
You were elected bishop of the Episcopal Church in Navajoland in 2010. At your consecration, preacher retired Bishop Rustin Kimsey said, “You have chosen well in selecting David Bailey to be your next bishop. He has known and loved you a long time.”
In recognition of your dedicated service to the mission of Christ and your love of the people of God, your seminary is pleased to bestow upon you the degree of Doctor of Divinity, honoris causa.
Austin, Texas September 25, 2012