Canon George H. Elliott was elected suffragan bishop for the diocese of Toronto in December. The position became open after Bishop Taylor Pryce retired.
A suffragan bishop is a bishop elected to assist a diocesan bishop. Bishop-elect Elliott, one of four Toronto suffragans, will be responsible for the York-Simcoe area of the diocese. He is being consecrated in February.
Canon Elliott, one of 11 candidates, won on the sixth ballot. “I was surprised,” he said later. “It was my first time on the ballot, and I was impressed by the others who were also on the ballot.”
Canon Elliott said he intends to keep a balance between his family and personal time and the obligations of his new role. “Many of the candidates had children still at home, and I have two in high school,” Canon Elliott noted. “This is a good thing. We need to be understood as human beings first, who are functioning in these ministries”.
Disabled since the age of 12, when he woke up one day paralyzed below the waist, Canon Elliott eventually regained the use of one leg. He walks with a pronounced limp.
Canon Elliott was ordained in 1980 and has been the incumbent at All Saints, King City, Ont., since 1996.
The final ballot came down to archdeacon Colin Johnson, executive assistant to Archbishop Terence Finlay, and Canon Elliott, synod members said.
Canon Elliott’s 18-year-old daughter, Elizabeth, was a youth delegate to the synod that elected her father. “It was a very emotional moment for the two of us when we found out I won,” he said.
Toronto is Canada’s largest diocese and the second largest in North America in numbers of clergy and parishes.