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Rio Texas Bishop Resigns


South Central Jurisdictional College of Bishops

December 4, 2015

San Antonio, Texas: Bishop James Dorff of the Rio Texas Conference of The United Methodist Church will voluntarily resign and surrender his credentials effective January 1, 2016.

The announcement comes from Bishop Michael McKee, President of the South Central Jurisdictional College of Bishops. The College of Bishops accepted Bishop Dorff’s resignation following a complaint.

In a letter to be released later today, Bishop Dorff stated the following:

"It is so difficult to admit and share, but I must inform you that I did not uphold the sacred vows I made to God at my wedding, at my consecration as bishop, and at my ordination as elder. I crossed what were the clear expectations of relational boundaries.

For this transgression, I am profoundly sorry. I offer my sincerest apologies to all concerned. My actions have caused pain to many, including my family, the person involved, each of you, members of the annual conference, and the greater church. I am so, so sorry."

Bishop McKee said that an interim bishop will be appointed to serve beginning in January. Until the interim bishop is appointed, Bishop McKee will provide episcopal oversight.

“This is a difficult situation for everyone involved, but we are confident that the ongoing ministries of the conference will continue under the capable leadership of the experienced, faithful conference staff and laity,” said Bishop McKee, who will work with the leaders of the Rio Texas Conference to assure a smooth transition.

During the South Central Jurisdictional Conference in July 2016, a new bishop for the Rio Texas Conference will be appointed to a term beginning on September 1, 2016. The Rio Texas Conference serves South Texas with nearly 400 churches.

Bishop Dorff was elected to the episcopacy in 2008. Prior to his election, he served as a pastor in the North Texas Conference for 36 years.


Media contact: Diane Degnan
615.742.5406 (o) 615.483.1765 (c)