The Right Reverend Michael Pierce Milliken
Michael P. Milliken was born March 13, 1947 in Lexington, Kentucky. Bishop Milliken originally dreamed of becoming a physician but the Holy Spirit had other ideas and led him into the ordained ministry.
Michael graduated from the University of Kentucky in 1970 with a Bachelor's Degree and then from the Episcopal Theological Seminary in Kentucky in 1973 with a Masters of Divinity. He was ordained to the diaconate in May 26, 1973 and then to the priesthood on November 30, 1973, the Feast of St. Andrew.
From 1973-1977 Father Milliken served as Vicar of St. Matthew's Church in the Diocese of Lexington and then moved to Florence, Kentucky where he served as Rector of Grace Episcopal Church. During this time he returned to school and received a Master of Arts in Theology from Xavier University where he then lectured from 1992-1993.
In 1998 Father Milliken and his wife Kathy moved to Hutchinson, Kansas where he took over the position as Rector of a second Grace Episcopal Church. Once in the Diocese of Western Kansas he took leadership roles in the diocesan leadership, the leadership of Province VII, and joined the boards of New Beginnings, Inc., a program to help the homeless of Hutchinson get back on their feet, and St. Francis Community Services, the largest provider of children's services in Kansas. As Rector of Grace Church he also taught religious studies at Hutchinson Community College and served as director of many summer youth camps and retreat weekends.
On August 21, 2010 during a special convention held at St. Michael's Episcopal Church in Hays Father Milliken was elected to the episcopate and his name was sent throughout the Episcopal Church for consent. On February 19, 2011 Milliken was consecrated as the Fifth Bishop of the Diocese of Western Kansas by The Most Reverend Kathrine Jefferts Schori, Presiding Bishop and Primate of the Episcopal Church; The Right Reverend Dean Wolfe, Ninth Bishop of the Diocese of Kansas; and The Right Reverend Vernon Strickland, Third Bishop of the Diocese of Western Kansas.
For the next three years Bishop Milliken served as both Bishop of this diocese and Rector of Grace Episcopal Church in Hutchinson. Bishop Milliken is the first Bishop to take on a dual role in 150 years. The experiment of a dual role Bishop was a success and this model has now been shared with other small diocese. On December 31st, 2014, Bishop Milliken stepped down from his position as Rector in order to commit himself full time to the future of the diocese. His vision for the Diocese of Western Kansas is to empower the laity to go out into their communities and minister in the name of Jesus Christ so that all may find hope and abundant life.