January 28, 2022—In a video posted tonight by the Episcopal Diocese of Utah, the Rev. Canon Dr. Rob Droste—Diocese of NJ Canon for Congregational Development and Mission—was named one of three candidates to be that diocese’s next bishop. The election is scheduled for Saturday, April 30.
In the video, the Diocese of Utah’s Nominating Committee introduced Droste and the other two candidates and played brief videos of the candidates discussing their vision for the Diocese of Utah.
“So, this is my dream for the Diocese of Utah,” Droste said in the video. “I see clergy and lay leaders who feel close to their bishop. People who are known and supported by their bishop as they work together – truly together, knowing each other well.
“I see a diocese that has a clear vision for where it’s going: to develop lifelong, committed disciples of Jesus Christ for the world— a vision that claims and proclaims Christ in a way that is authentic to the clergy and people of Utah.”
Introduction of the Candidates
The Diocese of Utah posted this video to its Bishop Search Web site tonight:
Ordained to the priesthood in San Francisco in 2000, Canon Droste served two successive Bay Area congregations until his 2014 call to the Diocese of New Jersey. A career public relations and marketing executive, his philosophy of church growth strongly rejects cookie-cutter “church growth” activities. Instead, Canon Droste and his 40-person diocesan coaching team focus entirely on helping congregations become schools of discipleship, ready and eager to talk about Jesus and pour their lives into the lives of others.
Speaking about Canon Droste’s candidacy, Diocese of New Jersey Bishop William H. Stokes said, “Canon Rob Droste’s energy, creativity, and passion for helping others grow as disciples is a blessing to the people and congregations of our diocese. The Diocese of Utah’s decision to consider him for their next bishop is recognition of Rob’s faithful work. I hope the people of our diocese will join me in congratulating him and praying for him, his wife Karla, and for all the candidates as they discern God’s will together.”
Canon Droste and his wife, Karla—a spiritual director who works with many members of the diocesan clergy—will travel to Utah in early April for meet & greets with the diocesan community. The election is scheduled for April 30, with the successful candidate’s ordination and consecration as 12th Bishop of the Diocese of Utah expected on Sept. 17.
“I am deeply honored to be chosen for the slate for 12th Bishop of Utah,” said Canon Droste. “As you might expect, I have spoken long and passionately to our brothers and sisters in the Mountain West about schools of discipleship, ‘keeping the main thing the main thing,’ pastoral coaching, and more—all concepts that have been developed and honed in my seven years in New Jersey. The next step—five days of meet and greets in April—will offer much more conversation about these concepts so critical to our future as a church.”
As the process unfolds in the coming weeks, Canon Droste looks forward to continued work developing followers of Jesus in the Diocese of NJ. “Until God indicates otherwise,” he says, “I will continue to give my very best to developing our coach training programs, CAP (Coaches Assisting Parents), Way of St. Paul IV (which I’m thrilled about), and bringing great resources like RenewalWorks, TryTank, and more to this very special diocese—the Diocese of New Jersey.”