In This Edition
Upcoming Congregational Events
August 23rd
Open House & Tour
Christ Church
Toms River
August 25th
Supper with All Saints'
All Saints'
Bay Head
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August 25th
Akiva David Presti
Book Signing
All Saints' 
September 5th
Fall Fair and Flea Market
St. Stephen's
Whiting
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September 11th
Remembrance Service
Christ Church
Bordentown
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September 12th
Blessing of the Firetrucks
Christ Church
Bordentown
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September 13th
Blessing of the Backpacks
St. David's
Cranberry
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September 13th
Global Christianity: The Church in Context
All Saints'
September 15th
Health and Kid's Fair
St. Mary's
Pleasantville
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September 16th
Remembering Victor Preller
All Saints'
September 19th
Bus Trip to Amazing Grace on Broadway
Trinity Cathedral
Trenton
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September 19th
POW/MIA Remembrance
St. James'
Edison
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September 19th
150th Anniversary Celebration and Evensong
Christ Church
Toms River 
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September 19th
Fair and Flea Market
St. James' Memorial
Eatontown
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September 25th
Basket Auction
Atonement
Laurel Springs
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September 26th
Community Health Expo
St. Luke's
Ewing
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September 27th
150th Anniversary Banquet
Christ Church
Toms River
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September 27th
Kitchen of Hope Awards Banquet
St. Thomas
Glassboro
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October 10th
Calico Fair and
Rummage Sale
Christ Church
Middletown
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Episcopal Links of the Week
St. "Just" Center

Amidst drought and economic crisis, the St. Just Center (Centro San Justo) in Trujillo Alto Puerto Rico offers child care and education to over 140 children. 
The center
"operates 50 weeks a year from 6 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., an accommodating schedule that allows working parents, many of whom single mothers, a flexible, holistic childcare option." 

Part of the Diocese of Puerto Rico, the diocese also o perates three additional childcare centers and Hogar San Miguel, a home for runaways.

Says the center's   director: 
"The most beautiful thing is the transformation of the children and the family, complete transformation"
Episcopal Food Truck Looking to Launch in Texas

Following the movement of churches in atypical spaces  the Rev. Sean Steele is hoping to start St. Isidore the Farmer, a food truck aimed at building a networked community of faith focused on service. The church would gather wherever work is being done, and share a meal. 

"At the heart of Christianity is the idea that we are fed, and we are fed by God. This is what Jesus did over and over again. He fed people, and what better way than a food truck to go out into the world and feed people?" 
Celebration of a Modern  Martyr

Over 1500 people journeyed to the small town of Hayneville, Alabama to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the death of Jonathan Daniels, a seminarian who had traveled to the south during the Civil Rights movement and was murdered for his actions, his murderer never brought to justice. 

New Jersey was well represented (including our Bishop and Chancellor) at this gathering which featured preaching by Presiding Bishop-elect Michael Curry and pilgrims from across the nation gathering to bless a historic marker and celebrate the Eucharist in the courthouse. 
Psalms on the Go!

A new app was recently released by the Church of England (The Episcopal Church's counterpart in the UK). Released by Church House Publishing, the new app "provides short meditations on each of the Psalms written by Bishops, well-known writers, experienced ministers, biblical scholars and theologians."

It is currently available for iOS with Android coming soon. 
Have a compelling story to share? Click here to e -mail Jonathan Elliott and let us know!
August 22, 2015
From the Bishop
 
Dear People of the Diocese of New Jersey:

Let justice roll down like waters; and righteousness like an ever-flowing stream...Amos 5:24

Last weekend, I had the profound experience of journeying to Alabama for a pilgrimage honoring the 50th Anniversary of the martyrdom of Jonathan Myrick Daniels. (For a complete account of Daniel's story see " Remembering Jonathan Myrick Daniels 50 years after his martyrdom"). I began my pilgrimage in Montgomery and walked its streets. Many historic markers told the story of how the slave trade was carried out in this city. I passed the bus stop where Rosa Parks began her famous ride into history. I prayed in front of Dexter Avenue Baptist Church where a young Ma rtin Luther King, Jr. had been the pastor and helped lead the Montgomery Bus Boycott.

I drove to Selma and walked across the notorious Edmund Pettus Bridge, site of "Bloody Sunday," March 7, 1965. Here, 600 peaceful demonstrators led by John Lewis and The Reverend Hosea Williams were set upon and brutally beaten by Alabama state troopers. Images of this were telecast across the nation, horrifying many and forcing President Lyndon Johnson to take action. I passed the site where The Reverend James Reeb, a Uni tarian Universalist minister, was beaten to death after eating dinner with fellow civil rights workers.

I worked my way to the George Washington Carver Homes and the Brown A.M.E. Church where King had been and which had been the staging ground of the actions in Selma. I was saddened by the level of deep depression. According to USA Today, Dallas County, of which Selma is the county seat, was the poorest county in Alabama last year. Selma has an unemployment rate of 10.2%; the national rate is 5.5%. More than 40% of families and 67% of children in the county live below the poverty line (See " Selma Anniversary Puts Spotlight on Deep Poverty," USA Today, March 8, 2015.) This poverty was evident in the condition of broken down homes along the streets of Selma and in the boarded up stores on the main streets.

On Saturday, I joined 1,500 pilgrims who had journeyed to Hayneville to remember Jonathan Myrick Daniels and 13 others who were killed in Alabama fighting for civil rights. We gathered on the town green and walked to the town jail where he and the others were kept in squalid conditions. From there, we processed the short journey to the site of Varner's Cash Store, where Daniels was shot and killed by Tom Coleman. An all-white jury refused to convict Coleman. A newly installed Alabama State plaque marking the site for posterity was formally dedicated.

Following the walk, there was a Eucharist in the courthouse. Our Presiding Bishop-elect Michael Curry preached and electrifying sermon reminding us that we are all part of a movement - the "Jesus movement." He invoked the memory of Harriet Tubman and her words to those she led to escape on the Underground Railr oad, "No matter what happens, keep going!"

A week before I went to Alabama, I participated in a forum in East Orange, New Jersey led by Senator Cory Booker. The topic of the forum was Mass Incarceration. The United States imprisons more people than any nation in the world. We have over 2.4 million behind bars, an increase of over 500% in the past thirty years. While we have 5% of the world's population, we have 25% of its prisoners. People of color represents 60% of people in prison. Evidence makes it clear that racial bias results in the criminal justice system acting against people of color in disproportionate and unjust ways. (See " New Jim Crow Fact Sheet" published by The Center for Law and Justice). There is wide bi-partisan recognition that mass incarceration is a significant problem in our nation that needs to be addressed (See " The moral failures of America's Prison-Industrial Complex" in  The Economist, July 20, 2015).

The 78th General Convention, held in Salt Lake City this past summer, passed Resolution A-183 which encourages all Episcopalians to engage in a book study about Mass Incarceration, recommending Michelle Alexander's book The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness (New York: T he New Press, 2010) as a primary resource for this study.

It is my hope and my prayer that the congregations and people of the Diocese of New Jersey recognize that mass incarceration and "the New Jim Crow" are a real challenge that demand our attention and action today. I urge everyone to act on General Convention Resolution A-183 by reading Michelle Alexander's book and beginning book discussions about it in your churches.

"Just keep going," Harriet Tubman advised more than a hundred years ago. "Just keep going," Presiding Bishop-elect Curry reminded us last week. "Just keep going!"

Blessings and peace,
,
  
  
  
 
 
The Right Reverend William H. (Chip) Stokes, D.D.
XII Bishop of New Jersey
 
Good News Stories

Video: St. Peter's Haven in Clarksboro!


On August 16, St. Peter's Episcopal Church in Clarksboro, NJ formally dedicated "St. Peter's Haven," a transitional housing program in cooperation with Family Promise of Gloucester County.  St. Peter's will lease the three bedroom house to the agency to be used by homeless families.  Family Promise will cover the utilities and supervise the families.  The parish has been energized by this budding ministry and worked to paint and furnish the house for the families.  The first family to occupy St. Peter's Haven has three young children.



Episcopal Relief & Development Spotlight

Holy Apostles' Church in Yardville maintains the tradition of having a "poor box" in the back of the church.  This ancient practice comes from the story of the widow's mite.  At Holy Apostles parishioners can make small donations throughout the year; children especially enjoy putting coins in.  This summer's poor box collection will go towards the purchase of a 75th Anniversary Package from Episcopal Relief and Development.  The funds will provide a community with three care packages for moms and newborns, three gifts of clean water, reforestation of 100 trees, a micro-credit loan and training for a female entrepreneur and the gift of three goats.  Holy Apostles' also raises funds for Episcopal Relief and Development through its October 5K and Fun Run, Soles for the Harvest. 

5th Annual International Food Festival 
brings together food, music and cultures 
from around the Globe

On August 15, many gathered at St. Elizabeth's, Elizabeth for a day of games, face painting, raffles, entertainment, crafts and goods, music, and dancing.   

See more photos from this fun event, and be sure to join them next year!





Ministry to the Imprisoned in the Diocese of New Jersey

 


April 2016 trip to Israel

Trinity Church of Williamsport, PA is planning a tour to Israel in
April 2016. Clergy and laity in the Diocese of Central PA and Dioceses in PA and NJ, are invited to join.  



The tour will be leaving from Newark International Airport. 
 A full brochure and reservation forms are available. 

Ministry Institute

  
 
A full listing Fall 2015 Ministry Institute events is now available!

The September 2015 list of events is below!

September 9-10
Becoming the Story We Tell: Transform Your Church through Liturgy, Preaching, and Bible Study
Church of the Holy Spirit, Lebanon

September 12
Clergy Compensation and Benefits Workshop for Clergy
Trinity Cathedral, Trenton

September 13
Sermon: Discovering Your God-Given Gifts for Service
Christ Church, New Brunswick

September 19
Workshop: Discovering Your God-Given Gifts for Service
Church of St. Mark & All Saints, Galloway

September 19
Building Skills: Organ Service Playing and Improvisation, Beginning Handbells, Music in the Spanish Community, Choral Anthem Reading Session for Small Choirs
Trinity Cathedral, Trenton

September 19
Sexual Misconduct Awareness Workshop
Church of the Advent, Cape May

September 26
Trinity Church, Princeton

September 26
Evensong: Honoring the Witness, Faithfulness, and Contributions of Older Adults in Our Diocese
Trinity Cathedral, Trenton


Here are some upcoming highlights:

October 3
Parish Leadership Day
Grace-St. Paul's, Mercerville   

October 15-17
Undoing Racism: Help Us Build the Beloved Community
St. Augustine's Atlantic City

November 2-4
Clergy Conference
Seaview Hotel and Golf Club, Galloway 
    
  
The Diocese of New Jersey
(609) 394-5281
808 West State St, Trenton, NJ 08618