Lenten Message from the Bishop

Dear Friends in Christ:
Grace and peace to you.
The Season of Epiphany ends with the story of the Transfiguration - Christ's true self revealed in glory on the mountaintop. We tell that story now, at the threshold of Lent, to remember that we who follow Jesus are also in the process of being transfigured: changed into his likeness, as - forgiven, renewed, empowered, our essential dignity restored - our own true self is revealed.
Lent is given as a time for us to engage in that process more intentionally. 

I now invite you into the observance of a holy Lent. May it be a consecrated time, time distinct from business as usual, dedicated to the work of deepening our relationship with God.
God bless you in this season, and in that work.
Following him with you,

Bishop's Signature
Gathering Feedback from Your Flock
It was great to see so many clergy at the Bishop Search Committee Listening Event in Santa Rosa last Saturday! 

Clergy are an important part of the Listening Events so thank you for considering being a part of one and promoting them to your church members. We hope by now you've seen our email with detailed information about and how to schedule and facilitate your very own Parish Forum. 

All your input is helpful and if we receive it before March 24, it informs the creation of our profile. Please let us know if you would like any more information or guidance, and thank you for helping the Search Committee gather feedback.
You can contact Erika Trez at erika@grace-episcopal.org with any other needs or questions.

More information on the Bishop Search Process is available here.
President's Day - Monday, Feb. 19

The Office of the Bishop  will be closed. The office will reopen for business at 8:30 a.m. on Feb. 20.  The Diocesan e-News will be published later that afternoon.
Peter Rodgers sketching 2018 pilgrimage
The Rev. Peter Rodgers, sketching at left, chose to chronicle his pilgrimage with watercolors. This is a sunrise on the Sea of Galilee he says was inspired by an early morning photograph taken by the Rev. Ann Hallisey.

Holy Land Still Inspires as Pilgrims, Leaders Return Home

The pilgrims reported feelings ranging from exhilaration to heartbreak as they roamed the multifaceted landscape and encountered the wonder of the Holy Land. They muscled through jet lag, cold and rain. Some took amazing photographs (see slideshow, here) they graciously shared with those of us back home.

Some thoughts from the pilgrims as they traveled:

Bishop Barry: "The beginnings of our pilgrimage in the Galilee were a time of great blessing. ... A wonderful group with whom to walk the pilgrim way. What a privilege to witness their joy and wonder in these holy places!"

Kevin Gore, CDSP seminarian: "Today (Jan. 28) involved a lot of driving, a drastic change in landscape, and very profound moments of beauty and pain. (The Rev. Nael Rahmoun of Christ Church, Nazareth) said one of the most heartbreaking but important things; They as Christians in this country are very alone, and feel it very deeply. From there we raced off to the traditional site of the Baptism of Jesus, with armed Israeli guards on one side and armed Jordanian guards on the other, and renewed our baptismal vows." The next day featured a trip to an orphanage that takes in abandoned babies, and a visit to the separation wall that in Bethlehem.

Laura Simkins, St. Francis, Fair Oaks: "We started out the day (Jan. 27) with Holy Eucharist outdoors by the Sea of Galilee. It was the most moving and spiritual celebration of communion that I have ever experienced. We were at Tabgha, where tradition says Jesus preached and fed the multitudes with the loaves and fishes. We stood on the beach there and imagined the resurrected Jesus sharing a fish fry with the disciples. I later enjoyed St Peter's fish (a fresh water tilapia) for lunch! Viewing the preserved fishing boat from Jesus' time and then, during a miraculous clear part of the day, riding in a boat on the Sea of Galilee were extraordinary experiences. A later visit to Megiddo, also known as Armageddon (look it up!) was appropriately harrowing as we descended into and raced through an ancient water tunnel before the site closed for the day. Not for the faint of heart! Rainbows reassured us on our bus ride home."
Celebration of New Ministry this Friday at Trinity, Nevada City

The new ministry of the Rev. Bradley Helmuth will be celebrated at 6:30 p.m. Feb. 16 at 
Holy Trinity, Nevada City201 Nevada St. 

All are invited to attend this event. Clergy: white stoles.

If you wish to send a card or letter to Father Brad, the mailing address of the church is 202 High Street, Nevada City, CA 95959.
Dave Rickert Ordained into the Sacred Order of Priests

The new Rev. Rickert blesses Father Kenn Katona
The Rev. Kenn Katona of Rancho Cordova receives a blessing from the new priest.

Nearly 150 people packed into the 1856 wooden Trinity, Folsom, church on the evening of Feb. 8 to witness the consecration of David Gilman Rickert.

Bishop Barry was in good spirits despite having just returned from leading a pilgrimage to the Holy Land, and the Rev. Todd Bruce, rector, gave a moving sermon on how Christ alone can satisfy us, punctuated with a wee bit of humor and occasional wry smiles.

Presenters included Northern California priests Anne Clarke, Charlie Knuth and Sonya Reichel, and former archdeacon Canon Cookie Clark was the bishop's chaplain and read the gospel. 

A festive reception followed in the hall across the alley from the historic church.

Above, the Trinity, Folsom, banner hangs in front of the choir loft.

At left, Bishop Barry places his mitre
on an acolyte's head to let her try it on. 

Clergy Lenten Quiet Day - March 7

The Clergy Lenten Quiet Day  registration is open!  It  will be Wednesday, March 7, at Mercy Center, Auburn   and will be led by Rev. Canon Andrea McMillin.

The event is free and lunch will be provided.  Mercy Center can make lunch accommodations if you are vegetarian; however, i f you have other special dietary needs, Mercy Center invites you to bring your own supplemental food. A refrigerator and microwave is available for guest use.

For more information, or to RSVP, contact Jacqi Seppi, Executive Assistant to the Bishop, at 916-442-6918, ext. 213, or email jacqi@norcalepiscopal.org
Retired Clergy Luncheon - April 12

Bishop Barry invites all retired clergy and their spouses/partners to lunch twice a year. The next luncheon will be Thursday, April 12, 2018 at Faith Episcopal Church, Cameron Park. A letter will be sent out in mid-February. The time will be 11 a.m. to no later than 1:30 p.m.
Rev. Christine Leigh-Taylor ( leighta@mcn.org) is chaplain to the retired clergy of the diocese. She arranges these fellowship events at churches around the diocese. There is no charge, but reservations are required so we know how much food to order. For reservations,  contact Jacqi Seppi, Executive Assistant to the Bishop, at 916-442-6918, ext. 213, or email  jacqi@norcalepiscopal.org
Welcome the New Benefits Coordinator for Our Diocese

alena Vela has joined the Office of the Bishop staff as our Benefits Coordinator and Accounting Specialist.  Her phone is  916-442-6918, ext. 229 and her email is salena@norcalepiscopal.org .

She graduated from the University of New Mexico, in Albuquerque, with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Business Administration, with a concentration in Human Resources Management. She has worked in public and private sector government agencies in various administrative, management, and human resources roles.  Originally from Sacramento, Salena and her spouse met in Albuquerque, but found their way back to California in 2017 to start their careers and their new journey as newlyweds.
Save the Date: 2018 Clergy Conference

May 22-24: Clergy Conference at Bishop's Ranch. The guest speaker will be 
the Rt. Rev. Mary Gray Reeves, bishop of the Diocese of El Camino Real. She is the co-author of the  2011 book "The Hospitality of God" and has been bishop of El Camino Real since 2007.
Bishop's Visitation Schedule
  • Feb. 18 - St. Michael's, Anderson 
  • Feb. 25 - St. Paul's, Crescent City
  • March 11 - St. Mary's, Elk Grove 
  • March 25 - Trinity Cathedral, Sacramento
  • April 1 - St. Matthew's, Sacramento 
The Bishop's full 2018 visitation schedule is  available here
Summer Camperships Available for Diocese Youth

Camp Galilee
Camp Galilee at Lake Tahoe.
Summer camper scholarships in the amount of $200 will be available to 60 children and youth who are active in Diocese of Northern California congregations. The scholarships are available on a first-come, first-served basis to be used for Camp Living Waters, Camp Galilee, Bishop's Ranch, St. Dorothy's Rest, the Episcopal Youth Event, and the Pathways Youth Pilgrimage.

We hope this program will help congregations to encourage and support their young people and families in participating in these transformative summer discipleship experiences. Congregational leadership (such as clergy, vestry members or youth ministers) can apply for these scholarships; click here to fill out the form. Congregations will be responsible for verifying that each child is eligible and for distributing the scholarships.

The Bishop's Office is committed to expanding opportunities for our young people to experience life-changing summer programs. If you would like to join in this effort, your donation is welcome, and you may  donate online here. Enter the amount, select "Youth Camp Scholarship" in the "Select a fund" field and enter your e-mail address. Follow the screen prompts to complete your donation.
If you have questions about summer camps and other youth programs in our diocese, please contact the Rev. Anne Clarke, Lifelong Christian Formation Coordinator, at  anne@norcalepiscopal.org.
Youth Discipleship Conversation and Connection

Join us for a nurturing lunch at a nearby restaurant and discussion around what could be emerging in youth discipleship in our diocese. Come for community and refreshment on Saturday, March 10, following the Bishop Search Committee Listening Event at St. John's, Roseville. This event is taking the place of the originally planned 2/9 and 3/9 visioning circles.

All are welcome. Please let us know if you're interested in attending by contacting the Rev. Anne Clarke at anne@norcalepiscopal.org.
Anti-Racism Training - April 21 at St. Mary's, Napa

The second 2018 Anti-Racism Training will be from 10 a.m.-
5 p.m. on April 21 at St. Mary's, Napa.  This training also will be facilitated by leaders from the  Kaleidoscope Institute

This event is free, and lunch is included, but registration is required. Please register by April 16.  Register here.
Living Stones Conference: Adventures in Baptismal Ministry
By the Rev. Betsey Monnot, Missioner for Leadership Development and Networking 

The hotel conference room didn't have any windows, but that didn't stop the people gathered inside from gaining insight into the wider world. Pat Harik, Aidan Rontani, and I represented the Diocese of Northern California at the annual conference of the Living Stones partnership the first weekend in February.

Betsey, Pat Harik, Aidan Rontani and Kay Rhode.
Once a year, representatives from dioceses all over North America gather to discuss their experiences with baptismal ministry. Often this takes the form of an examination into a congregation's use of the model we in Northern California call "Total Ministry." Other times it can be different: this year's reflections included one from the Society of Saint Francis, an Episcopal men's religious order; and a combined reflection from the Diocese of California, the 
School for Deacons, and CDSP 
about formation for the vocational
Living Stones tradition of playing Nertz lives on.
During the 75 minutes that the Northern California team received feedback on our reflection presentation, I managed to take seven pages of handwritten notes. The rich feedback came from ministry developers and members of congregations from both the diocese of Lexington and the diocese of Rupert's Land in Canada. The bishop of Rupert's Land, who spent years as a ministry developer before his election as bishop, also offered valuable insights. 

As so often happens, much of the real benefit of the conference came outside of the formal gatherings. With 43 individuals, all of whom are committed to supporting the ministry of all the baptized in its many forms, the conversations during "break" time were as full of learning as the conversations in the "work" sessions. We even managed to have dinner with Kay Rhode, our own former diocesan Ministry Developer, and still got back to the hotel in time for what we learned was a Living Stones tradition, the card game Nertz.
Comings and Goings                                                
  • The Very Rev. Brian Baker announced last week that he will be stepping down as dean of Trinity Cathedral, Sacramento, this summer to join his wife, the Rev. Andrea Baker, in Southern California as she prepares to live into "her true vocation" as a full-time Army chaplain. Dean Baker has led Trinity for 12 years. Pastor Andrea worked at Faith, Cameron Park, for three years, has done mission work in Honduras and served in Afghanistan as a chaplain. She graduated from Church Divinity School of the Pacific in 2010. Both Bakers graduated from West Point before entering clergy life.                                                                       
  • St. Paul's, Benicia, called the Rev. Peter Champion to be its interim rector. He has been an Episcopal priest for 28 years and he and his wife of 44 years, the Rev. Susan Champion (Rector of Christ the Lord Church in Pinole), live in Rodeo. There's more about him in the Jan. 16 e-News.                                                   
  • The Rev. Doug Thompson, rector emeritus of Christ Church, Eureka, died peacefully at home following an illness on Jan. 27, 2018. The Rev. Dr. Daniel London, who celebrated his first service as rector of Christ Church the next day, was at Father Doug's bedside to anoint him as he prepared for his final journey. A celebration of his life was on Feb. 2; diocesan historian the Rev. Harry Allagree preached. Please hold Father Doug's wife Nellie and his daughters Julianna Marie Thompson-Corliss and Suzanna Lynne Thompson Spencer in your prayers.                                                                                                                                           
  • Our neighboring Diocese of California announced a new Canon to the Ordinary, the Rev. Abbott Bailey. She comes from Richmond, Virginia, where she was rector of St. Andrew's Church and co-executive director of Grace-on-the-Hill, an Episcopal Service Corps Program. Abbot received a Master of Divinity from Yale Divinity School, has a Master of Public Administration with honors from The George Washington University, and a B.A. from Eckerd College.

First Female Anglican Archbishop 

Photo by Daniel Wilkins/ Perth Now
The Rt. Rev. Kay Goldsworthy, bishop of Perth, Australia, became the first woman to be named an archbishop in the Anglican Church on Feb. 10.
She was among the first group of women to be ordained as priests in Australia in 1992. Then in 2008, she became the nation's first female bishop.

Bishop Goldsworthy said it was important to have as many women as possible in positions of leadership to be "beacons" for others. She is particularly passionate about tackling the scourge of violence against women and children in the community.
From the Episcopal Church

The Jesus Movement: Loving, Liberating and Life-giving will be the theme for The Episcopal Church 79th General Convention. It will be held Thursday, July 5 to Friday July 13 at the Austin Convention Center in Austin, Texas. "An Introduction to the 79th General Convention for Deputies and Bishops" is now available on the General Convention   website. Also, legislative committees have been announced; read the full rosters here. For the draft budget approved by the Executive Council for 2019-21, click here.

Other news:

How the new tax laws could affect Episcopal charitable giving

More than 60 scholarships are available through the Episcopal Church - apply now

Diocese of Bethlehem names two priests to stand for election as ninth bishop

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