Student Ministry resumes at St. James in Florence, Italy....
The Rev. Andrew A. Cooley, Interim Rector, reports:
“A new caldaia (furnace) was installed; we are now living in the Rectory. After spending time cleaning and organizing, we were able to host 8 college students for dinner last Wednesday. We had a great evening of eating, discussion, compline and even a short bible study. It was a fabulous "house warming" experience and connected us to the ministry of hospitality that has been such an important part of the Rectory.
“The theme of our discussion, and a theme that continues to rise in my consciousness is that of "Pilgrimage". We reflected together on how being in Florence on a semester abroad can be a time to awaken to hear God's call in our lives in new ways. I pray that all of us touched by St. James can find our ears opened to hear God's voice speaking in new and transforming ways through our connections here.
“Soon these students will be returning to the United States and resuming more familiar patterns. My God bless them, and each of us in our journeys. And may we be filled with gratitude for the hospitality we have experienced in this place.
On May 3 and 4, the Union of Black Episcopalians (UBE) held its Northeast Regional Conference in Niagara Falls, New York. The event was hosted by the UBE's Bishop James Theodore Holly Chapter, based at St. Philip's Episcopal Church in Buffalo.
At the conference luncheon, Bishop Bill Franklin was awarded the inaugural Racial Healing and Transformation Award from the Bishop Holly Chapter. Franklin, who was instrumental in organizing the diocese's Commission to Dismantle Racism and Discrimination, retired in early April.
Justice Rose Sconiers, dean of the conference, commended Franklin for his leadership on racial justice issues. " I could really see the difference between when Bishop Franklin stepped into this diocese and when he left," she said, citing his participation on the Greater Buffalo Racial Equity Roundtable and his support of the diocesan commission.
In addition to Sconiers, organizers of the conference included Wayne A. Blassingame, president of the Bishop Holly Chapter of the UBE; Michael Hughes and Kim Green, conference co-chairs; and Ann Burroughs, Josephine Cross, Deacon Lillian Davis-Wilson, Herman Wilson, and Paul Nevergold.
On May 4 the Diocese of NY had a very successful wardens’ conference, organized by diocesan chief of finance, Esslie Hughes, and hosted by the Parish of Christ the Redeemer in Pelham. The 110 wardens who attended enjoyed an engaging and informative presentation from diocesan vice-chancellor Alice Yurke on the perennial topic of the role and responsibilities of wardens, a sermon preached by TEC chief operating officer Deacon Geoffrey T. Smith, an address by Bishop Dietsche, a panel discussion led by Heavenly Rest rector the Rev. Matthew Heyd, and further presentations on the mechanics of diocesan finances, church revitalization and new church development, and the Diocesan Investment Trust, by the Rev. Matthew Hoxsie Mead, Bishop Allen K. Shin, and Mr. John Trammell, respectively.
Links to materials and videos are at www.dioceseny.org/2019-wardens-conference.
The videos include:
Anti-Racism and Reconciliation Training
Here is the latest class of NJ Diocese’s Antiracism 2.5 day training, completed Saturday May 11 at All Saints Scotch Plains. The inter-active Training, Repudiating the Sin of Racism, was facilitated by a team of NJ Antiracism Commission members who created and developed course. All successful participants of New Jersey’s Antiracism Multi-day trainings are presented with the purple and gold stoles signifying membership in the Diocese’s Antiracism Team. The next NJ Diocese’s 2.5 day Antiracism Training will be October 4, 5 and 12 at St Stephens, Whiting, NJ.
Bishops United Against Gun Violence - Live
Bishop Chip Stokes will livestream a prayer vigil on gun violence this Friday from the 9/11 memorial insideTrinity Cathedral in Trenton. Sponsored by Bishops United Against Gun Violence, the vigil will be broadcast live on the Episcopalians United Against Gun Violence Facebook page, the theme is school shootings and urban violence and the main reading will be Habakkuk 1:1-4.
The Jubilee Ministry site Samaritan House--a halfway house that has transitioned more than 200 men to permanent housing in the past five years--gained national exposure, including an article in USA Today. While the reason for the attention was unfortunate, the resulting attention has increased donations and an awareness of the good work Samaritan House is doing. Local police had entered Samaritan House on April 24, looking for a resident, and were startled by a different resident's pet dog. Officers shot and wounded the dog in the leg. The dog--a 2-year-old mixed breed named "Bella"--has had surgery and is recovering. The incident has raised some questions about local police policies.
English & Spanish Protocol
The Diocese of New Jersey has developed a Protocol for English-speaking congregations that wish to establish a relationship with those who speak Spanish. This Protocol outlines the various steps to take from the early exploratory stages up to full implementation. We have planned a June 1 Workshop to present this Protocol to all interested congregations of the Diocese. The Workshop will be held on Saturday June 1, 2019 from 9:00 a.m.-noon at St. Matthew’s Episcopal Church, Pennington, NJ.
La Diócesis de Nueva Jersey ha preparado un Protocolo para las congregaciones de habla inglesa que desean establecer una relación con aquellos que hablan español. Este Protocolo describe los distintos pasos a seguir desde las primeras etapas exploratorias hasta la implementación completa. Hemos planeado un 1 de Junio Taller para presentar este Protocolo a todas las congregaciones interesadas de la Diócesis,