Justin Fletcher and Jonathan Mitchican did not have to gather groups. Nor, of course, did the two men recently ordained who will be serving as military chaplains for the foreseeable future. Nor did the Bros. Clearly some kind of triage is going on. Granted, this still allowed the Bros to get ordained, but no system is perfect.you can see it here -- for that matter.)
The reason he didn't have to gather a group is that he's perfect. A shock of prematurely white hair. An old-boy suck-it-up rictus that bares teeth that need treatment. A squint toward the middle distance, which says he ain't gonna notice much closer at hand. I would think the prosperous families in the Houston area can be reassured that even if this is a Catholic school, they can feel as if it's St Grottlesex, a solid TEC institution. And when he moves to an upper-tier OCSP parish, the faithful there can be convinced it's all solidly Episcopalian at heart.
But what of Fr Longenecker, who told our parish this past Lent that Anglicanism "looks like" Catholicism? Why on earth is Catholicism in this case turning around and trying to "look like" Anglicanism? Mitchican is clearly the star of this cohort. Whether he can do more than look an oddly incongruous part is still an open question.
If I were in charge I think I would forget about the group-gathering, or even finding replacements for marginal groups whose leaders are retiring (I think this has failed, or is failing, in every instance). Instead I would focus on finding good candidates to support the ministry of currently successful OCSP parishes (unfortunately Canada is a special case). Celibate seminarians---first choice---and successful TEC/ACC (former) clergy who would consider the OCSP over the PP if they had the prospect of a "real" job. An educational institution that advertises only sessional/adjunct positions is not going to attract distinguished academics as applicants.I get the impression that the OCSP is being run primarily to look good to outside observers -- but these are not even Mr and Mrs John Q Anglican, who might be thinking about coming over -- that market's been exhausted. I think Bp Lopes is playing exclusively to higher-ups in Rome, downplaying the mediocrities he's ordaining to swell the numbers of little Potemkin groups, playing up the very occasional poster boy that might fit someone's preconceived notion of incoming Anglicans.
Gregory Tipton and Philip Mayer strike me as sincere but desperate. David Hodil was ordained as a transitional deacon with Jason McCrimmon in August 2017. But the latter is now Fr McCrimmon, while Mr Hodil remains Mr Hodil. Did something go wrong with his "ministry plan" at the Tampa Bay Ordinariate Group? The article in last November's Ordinariate Observer stated that "both Floridians are expected to be ordained to the priesthood in the summer of 2018." I don't think they are going to wind up on the 6 o'clock news, but I don't think they are going to build strong OCSP communities, either. Better, IMHO, to let St Swithun, Podunk close than prolong the agony with a no-hoper. Or a careerist who will abandon it at the first opportunity.
Let's just accept that the North American Ordinariate has no more legs than the PP it replaced, and focus on sustaining the communities it has successfully created. This is not nearly the challenge, for a competent and godly pastor, that building up a community from scratch would be. That is a rare gift, and often comes with significant ego-baggage. Bp Lopes knows nothing from HR, and Fr Perkins is clearly feeling his way on an unfamiliar path. Msgr Steenson could at least draw on the TEC net, although when this failed him he made some pretty bad stabs in the dark. What's he thinking, up there in Minneapolis-St Paul?