Episcopal Diocese of
I greet you in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ.† I pray that you had a joyful Christmas celebration, and that you find yourself being renewed during this Epiphany season. Jane and I had a wonderful Christmas in Las Cruces, New Mexico.† We are now here in the Diocese of San Joaquin, and I am looking forward to the next two and a half weeks of being in residence in the diocese.
This year the season of Epiphany consists of six Sundays beginning with the Baptism of Jesus by John in the River Jordan.† The church follows the beginning of Jesusí ministry as he began to travel through the nation of Israel proclaiming the good news and performing wondrous acts.† We heard of the first miracle in Cana in the Gospel of John.† We heard about his visit to Nazareth, his home, and how his own people rejected him.† This Sunday we hear about his call to Peter, James, and John to follow him and become fishers of people.† This time of Epiphany is a time of beginning and a time of responding to Godís call to be his people in the world.† As Jesus proclaimed the Kingdom of God, we are called to proclaim that Jesus is the Good News of Godís presence in the world.† We are called to continue the ministry that Jesus began.† We are called in the same way as the disciples were called to follow Jesus to learn from him and then continue to proclaim his uniqueness.† We are to live our lives in a manner that makes Jesusí life, death, and resurrection manifest to a world that does not know him.
From the Diocesan officeÖ
Messages regarding the earthquake in Haiti:
Episcopal life Online continues to be a good source of information about the Episcopal Diocese of Haiti and the response to the earthquake by Episcopal Relief and Development.† It can be read at www.episcopalchurch.org/episcopal_life.htm.
To donate to the Haiti Fund, visit www.er-d.org or call 1-800-334-7626, ext. 5129.
Gifts can be mailed to Episcopal Relief & Development, P. O. Box 7058, Merrifield, VA 22116-7058. Please put "Haiti Fund" in the memo line of all checks.
Grace Episcopal in Bakersfield took a special collection for Haiti on January 24th. We raised $715 and will send it to Episcopal Relief and Development earmarked for Haiti relief.
The church school at St. Anneís provided hotdogs, hamburgers, and baked goods (for a small fee) at the Fifth Sunday coffee hour.† They also sold handmade Valentineís Day cards.† They have designated the money they raise for the Haiti Fund.
We would like to hear more stories about how the people in your church have responded and are reaching out to the people of Haiti.† Send the information to firstname.lastname@example.org.
An Update on the Sisters of St. Margaret in Haiti via Fr. Connor Lynn: Sr. Marie Margaret, Sr. Marie Therese and the two pre-postulants remain camped out on the soccer field at College St. Pierre, along with Bishop Duracin, some members of the diocesan staff, and about three thousand other people. Sister Marjorie Raphael is in Cange where daily living is far less stressful. We have not been able to make contact with Sr. Marie Margaret for the past week. We have spoken to the Bishop who assures us that the Sisters are well. A generous Associate has offered the Sisters a house for temporary refuge, but at present they have not moved from the field.† We have been deeply touched by the outpouring of prayer and concern for the Sisters' welfare. Many have donated funds and many people have also written touching notes which we are saving for the Sisters in Haiti once they are in a position to read them.† A special account has been set up at the Boston Convent for the Sisters in Haiti. The funds received will be used to restore and re-establish the mission of the Society of St. Margaret in Haiti. Initially, some of these donations may provide respite care for the Sisters once they are able to move to more beneficial living quarters. Among our contacts within the Episcopal Church we hear talk of rebuilding, but it is far too soon to be able to say in any detail what the plans might be. What we can say is that the ministry that has been is continuing and will continue. We pray for a stronger and renewed presence of the Society of St. Margaret in Haiti in the coming months and years.
Interested in Donating Material Goods?††††††††††† The Sisters have used Agape Flights for many years. Their website says, "YES, Agape Flights is flying often and is able to land in Port au Prince."† Agape is accepting backpacks and duffel bags with supplies for those in Haiti.† Backpacks are for either a single female or a single male and the duffel bags are for families.† Please be sure to label the bags accordingly for easier delivery and distribution.
All bags need canned/pouch meat, a blanket, a sheet, a towel, peanut butter, crackers/cookies, plate, fork, cup, 8 foot plastic rope, toothpaste, deodorant, small scissors, wipes, shampoo and bar soap in a baggie.† If you are packing a bag for a female, please add some sanitary products or for a male, please add a razor.† Family duffel bags just need double the amount of supplies.
PLEASE DO NOT SEND ITEMS TO THE BOSTON CONVENT.
All Items should be sent to:
100 AIRPORT AVENUE
VENICE, FL 34285-3901
A note to treasurers from Bill Latham, Diocesan Treasurer: Thanks to all for the great participation in the recently completed Wardens/Treasurers training conferences.† The turnout was spectacular, but more important was the obvious interest and dedication inherit in one of our most challenging, but often unrewarding, responsibilitiesóhanding the Churchís business.†† Please let me know what you would like to add in the future that we failed to cover this time.† As with the new Treasurers Manual, this is a work in progress.
As the Diocesan Council reviews the budget process for this year, a valuable tool would be a copy of the parish and missions budgets.† To help in our planning we request that each parish and mission forward a copy of your 2010 budget to the Diocesan office at 1518 Oakdale Road, Modesto, CA 95355, or to email@example.com.† Please understand that this is not a test or an evaluation.† There are no right or wrong ways to do a budget.† Any format is acceptable.† We just need to make sure we use our best tools as we plan for the future. This will also give us another way to assess the state of the Diocese.† If you have any questions, please feel free to contact Juanita Weber at (209) 576-0104, firstname.lastname@example.org or me at (209) 571-3467.† Your support as we continue on this important journey is most appreciated.
Clergy Conference February 26-27:†† The clergy conference will begin at the Irwin Street Inn in Hanford with social time starting about 5:00 p.m. Friday Evening, we will have dinner hosted by Fresh Start at 6:00 p.m.† We will have a two hour session on Friday evening.† After the session we will have compline followed by social time.† The next morning will be breakfast, followed by a four hour session until noon, when we will have lunch, then a two hour wrap up in the afternoon.† The entire weekend is sponsored by Fresh Start.† We will have Lynn Schmissrauter from the Fresh Start Faculty leading session, and Rick Cluett will also be with us.† This is a great opportunity to gain an understanding of Fresh Start, and learn techniques to use these ministry transition tools in your congregation.† We will also have with us the trained lay Fresh Start coordinators.† Please call the office to RSVP.† There are limited rooms available at the Irwin Street Inn, and we may have to house some at a near by hotel.
Diocesan Altar Guild will hold a board meeting on Saturday, March 13, 2010, from 10:00 a.m. to noon at Holy Family, 1135 E. Alluvial Ave., Fresno, CA, (559) 439-5011.†† Coffee will be served, and we will gather at a restaurant for lunch afterward.† Please RSVP to Susan Ohanneson, (661) 391-8735 or email@example.com. ††
Introducing the Diocesan Center for Spiritual Leadership: This announcement and Invitation from Bishop Mary to the Diocese of El Camino Real was recently shared with us in the Diocese of San Joaquin.† Our neighboring diocese has graciously extended the invitation to us.
You are the center of spiritual leadership for another human being at any given point in your Christian life.† Are you ready?
There has been a growing need in The Diocese of El Camino Real for lay leadership development.† Cursillo, as well as other training programs, have over the years, provided wonderful and effective contexts for formation of Christians in The Episcopal Church.† Such communities have provided fellowship, leadership, and spirituality: people have been built up in the faith and The Episcopal Church has been gifted with many long-serving leaders that are the wealth of our church.† Garnering support from the Cursillo community now as well as other diocesan leaders, we believe it is time in El Camino Real to offer an additional diocesan vehicle and community for the development of lay leadership in the Christian faith.†††
Since 2007 the diocesan staff has been in prayer about such a community.†† During this time of discernment Bill Dolby, a lay leader at St. Timothyís, Mountain View and a Silicon Valley executive, approached me in order to offer a vehicle by which a community for Christian spiritual leadership could emerge.† Over the past year, Canons Brian and Jesus have met with Bill, adding other diocesan leaders, Rick Matters (Rector of All Saintsí Carmel), Jerry Witherspoon and Greg Troxell (parishioners at St. Judeís), Caro Hall (Priest-in-Charge of St. Benedicts, Los Osos) and Peggy Bryan (Deacon of Calvary, Santa Cruz) into the mix of discerning and planning the format and the content of such a program.† Our hope is that we will accomplish, with the grace of God, a number of goals through the Diocesan Center for Spiritual Leadership:
Every session will have 4 components:
†We are a diverse diocese in culture, economy and faith expression.† We also feel very strongly about getting along graciously and living as one body.† While it may seem that this is a recipe for conflict, in fact, it is our greatest strength.† In Christ, it is possible to be extremely diverse and still be one.† This is the essence of Christian unity.†† We see this in the diversity of the human and the divine natures of the one Jesus Christ.† We see this in the writings of Paul as he coached divided communities on how to be united.† We see this in our own lives as we seek to be the body of Christ in an individualistic culture increasingly polarizing into self-selected groups of sameness and safety.† Indeed, we know our unity and our sense of safety are found in God alone.
To that end, we seek to create a Center for learning and formation that inspires and mobilizes leaders.† Respecting the diversity of expressions of Christian faith, encouraging tolerance and personal responsibility, and responding to Godís work within self and community will be at the heart of the Centerís vision.
Clergy and lay leaders, we pray you will consider how the Diocesan Center for Spiritual Leadership might support your congregationís ministry.† We ask that you select and send to the program:† 1) At least two members from your congregation, and 2) Clergy and Vestries/Bishopís Committees are invited to attend, too.†
We will begin the curriculum this year on February 20th at St. Paulís in Salinas Ė 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.†† All sessions will be held quarterly on Saturdays.† While we encourage you and your team to attend all sessions, the curriculum will be presented in self contained units so that anyone can begin at any session.† We are aware that this context for ministry formation will build over time, and it is our hope that this program will be ongoing for many years to come.†† Cost per session will be $20 which includes refreshments, lunch, and all handout material.†† Dates for the 2010 are as follows: February 20, May 8, August 14, and October 23 Ėat St. Paulís from 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
As always, this comes with my love and respect for you and your ministry, and of course, great honor in serving as your bishop.
Bishop, El Camino Real
Annual Convention Delegate Certification:† The form for certification of lay delegates to the 2010 Annual Convention to be held in October is posted on the Web site www.diosanjoaquin.org. Congregations elect delegates and alternate at annual meetings held between November 1 and January 21.† The completed form is due to the diocesan office by July 1, 2010.
Parochial Reports for 2009: Although not due until March 1, churches can start on the Parochial Report. You should have received a mailing from the Church Center with access and instructions for posting the report online. When the report is completed and signed, please send a copy to the diocesan office.† If you have questions or need help in completing and submitting the report call Juanita in diocesan office. 209-576-0104, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Check the 2010 Calendar:† A monthly and yearly calendar is posted on the diocesan Web site. www.diosanjoaquin.org†† Commission and committee members are encouraged to plan their meetings ahead and get them on the calendar. Congregations are encouraged to check the calendar when they plan events so conflicts with diocesan events can be avoided.† They also can notify the diocesan office of parish events that will be of interest to others in the diocese so all events can be coordinated.†
Sponsor Episcopal Life San Joaquin: In addition to subscriptions, additional sponsorships of $200 for each issue will be required to fund the publication and mailing.† This practice is continued from this past year.† Holy Family, Fresno, St. Matthewís, San Andreas, St. Johnís, Lodi, and Remain Episcopal, have all signed up to sponsor an issue in 2010. †Please contact Doris Hall email@example.com if you, a group in the church, or the whole congregation will sponsor an issue of Episcopal Life in 2010.
Materials for Episcopal Relief & Development Sunday:† At the 2009 General Convention, Lent was officially designated as a time to encourage diocese, congregations and individuals to remember and support the life-saving work of Episcopal Relief & Development.† All Episcopalians are invited to join together on the first Sunday of Lent, February 21 to pray for those in need and to consider a special offering in support of our mission to assist people living in poverty worldwide.†
Resources such as sermon notes, special prayers and bulletin inserts are available at www.er-d.org/Lent/.† A devotional booklet, 2010 Lenten Meditations, is also available.† Please order by February 8 so that shipments will arrive by Ash Wednesday, February 17.† Call Episcopal Books and Resources (EBaR) at 1-800-903-5544 or visit the Web site.
From the Chicago Consultation The 2009 General Convention of the Episcopal Church affirmed, through Resolution D025, that God may call partnered gay and lesbian people to all orders of ministry in the Episcopal Church. The Chicago Consultation believes that this position is consistent with traditional Anglican polity and theology. To aid standing committees and bishops with their role in the consent process, they have published a collection of essays by eminent theologians across the Episcopal Church.
The new publication, God's Call and Our Response, is edited by the Rev. Dr. Ruth A. Meyers, Hodges-Haynes Professor of Liturgics at Church Divinity School of the Pacific. God's Call and Our Response includes essays by:
News and Notes from Congregations...
This is a section of the Friday Reflection to post reports and information about special events at your church, especially if the event will be of interest to others in the diocese. Send the information to Juanita at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Episcopal Church of St. Anne in Stockton presents PUB NIGHT, Friday and Saturday nights, February 12 and 13, 6:00 to 8:30 p.m. For family fun, authentic English pub foods, entertainment, games, raffles and of course St. Anneís Ale brewed by the Brewerís Guild to taste, get your tickets at St. Anneís, 1020 Lincoln Road, Stockton CA, 95307.† $30 includes admission, meal, souvenir glass, all beverages and dessert.† For more information call 209-473-2313.
St. Johnís, Lodi will hold a celebration for Father Harold Clinehensí 30th anniversary of ordination to the priesthood on Sunday, February 28 after the 10:30 am service (around noon).† There will be a reception/celebration after the liturgy.
St. Johnís, Lodi has their annual Shrove Tuesday Pancake Supper, Tuesday, February 16 from 5:00 pm Ė 7:30 pm.† The youth will be cooking up all the trimmings for a delicious pancake supper.† All proceeds will benefit St Johnís youth mission trip to the Wiyot Indian reservation in July. Tickets $7 each.
Ash Wednesday Liturgies at St. Johnís Episcopal Church, Lodi, Wednesday, February 17. Imposition of Ashes and Holy Eucharist:† 7:00 am and Noon in the Chapel and 7:00 pm in the church with music.
The Arts at St.Johnís, Lodi presents Debra Cowan and Brooks Williams Saturday, February 27 at 7:00 pm.† Debra performs a blend of traditional and contemporary folksongs with bluesy acoustic guitarist, Brooks. Tickets on sale now. www.artsatsaintjohns.com or call 369-3381.
St. Johnís, Lodi Episcopal Churchís Lenten Study series will feature a study of the trials of Jesus in the wilderness.† Why is Lent 40 days? Partly because thatís how long Jesus fasted in the desert! Anne Smith will lead a study of Jesusí encounter with temptation. Together we will explore how Jesusí example speaks to our lives today.† Classes will convene three Wednesday evenings: February 24, March 3, and March 10. Program begins at 6:30pm ending promptly by 7:30 p.m.† For more details call 369-3381. All are welcome.
Bishop Lamb's Calendar
January†††††††††† Las Cruces, New Mexico
February 6†††††††††† Commission on Equality meeting, Holy Family Fresno
February 7††††††††††† St. Mary in the Mountains, Sonora
February 13† ††††††††††† St. Markís, Tracy
February 13††††††††††† Grace, Bakersfield (evening)
February 14†† ††††††††††† St. Paulís, Visalia
February 14††††††††††† Governance Committee (Diocesan Futures Group) Holy Family 3:00 p.m.
February 20††††††††††† Joint Standing Committee/Diocesan Council
February 21, ††††††††††† St. Francis, Turlock
February 22 to
March 26††††††††††† Las Cruces, New Mexico
Canon Hallís Calendar
February 6†††††††††† Commission on Equality meeting, Holy Family Fresno
February 14†††††††††† St. Anneís, Stockton
February 14†††††††††† Governance Committee (Diocesan Futures Group) Holy Family 3:00 p.m.
February 19, 20Vestry Retreat, Church of the Saviour, Hanford
February 21†††††††††† Holy Family, Discernment Committee and Vestry
February 28 †††††††††† 30th Anniversary of Ordination of Fr. Clinehens, St. Johnís, Lodi
February 26-27†††††††††† Clergy Conference, Fresh Start training, Hanford
March 7†††††††††† Church of the Saviour, Hanford
March 14†††††††††† St. Nicholas, Atwater/Merced
March 21†††††††††† St. Clare of Assisi, Avery
March 28†††††††††† St. Johnís, Tulare
April 4† †††††††††† St. John the Baptist, Lodi
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