In This Edition
Upcoming Congregational Events
Feb 20th
Coffee House 
Grace-St. Paul's
Mercerville
Click Here for More
Feb 27th
Line Dance Social 
St. Francis'
Dunellen
Click Here for More
March 1st
Baroque Festival
Community of St. John the Baptist
Mendham 
Click Here for More
March 1st  
Fish Fry Dinner 
Grace
Pemberton
Click Here for More
March 8th
The Music of Gabriel Faure  
St Mary's
Burlington 
Click Here for More
March 14th
St. Patrick's Day Dinner   
St Francis'
Dunellen 
Click Here for More
March 15th
Choir Festival 
St Luke's
Gladstone
Click Here for More
March 21st
Care and Renovation of Soul and Vestments 
St. John the Baptist
Mendham
Click Here for More
List Your Congregation's Events Here!
 
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Episcopal Links of the Week
Daily Office in Your Pocket

In this two part-post for the Living Church, Dale Rye discusses electronic forms of the daily office and its place in the modern world and supplies an annotated list of the best Daily Office apps.

Spoiler: To his taste, the best in the App Store is Mission St. Clare by Sound Marketing, LLC.
40 Bags in 40 Days

Did you already given up
chocolate, alcohol, or
junk food for Lent?
Is praying the daily office typically part of your daily routine?

White House Black Shutters offers a plan to declutter and simplify using the forty days of Lent to give up or give away unnecessary stuff. Though not explicitly offered as a religious discipline, the challenge runs from Ash Wednesday through Holy Saturday, with Sundays as days off, perhaps following Christ's edict to "give away all you have and follow me."

The blog includes printouts and instructions to keep you focused.

The author writes, "I want to start a revolution against all of this stuff that everyone tries to sell us and tell us we need."

Online Only Faith?

According to an article in Christianity Today, almost half of all pastors believe worship will become an "online-only' experience within the decade.

By comparison, in 2000 only 78 percent of pastors felt online religious experiences were theologically acceptable, and only 15 percent used the internet for their own religious experiences.

It is worth noting that the study included 601 interviews with Protestant senior pastors.

Panelists Announced for Climate Change Crisis

A live webcast on March 24 at will kick off 30 Days of Action. Addressing one of the most significant topics in today's society, the panelists are well-versed in the critical areas of the environment and the impact of climate change on our world.  

The 90-minute live webcast will originate from Campbell Hall Episcopal School, North Hollywood, CA.  

 

Speakers include  climatologist Fritz Coleman, Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori, and panels including Bishop Marc Andrus, Princess Daazhraii Johnson, Dr. Lucy Jones, and Mary D.  Nichols, J.D.  

Have a compelling story to share? Click here to e-mail Jonathan Elliott and let us know!
February 19, 2015

 

Dear People of the Diocese of New Jersey,  
 

Yesterday, Ash Wednesday, we entered into Lent. It is a season of penitence and fasting, echoing Jesus' 40 days in the wilderness. We are encouraged to observe this holy season by "self-examination and repentance; by prayer, fasting and self-denial; and by reading and meditating on God's holy Word"  (Book of Common Prayer, p.  265). In short,  it is a time of discipline in a culture which tends to resist discipline. 

 

In her book The Rule of Benedict:  Insights for the Ages - a contemporary commentary on Benedict's rule, which has been a classic of Christian spirituality for more than 1500 years, Joan Chittister observes: "The spiritual life is not something that is gotten for the wishing or assumed by affectation. The spiritual life takes discipline" [emphasis added]. "It is," she continues, "something to be learned, to be internalized. It's not a set of daily exercises; it's a way of life, an attitude of mind, an orientation of the soul. And it's gotten by being schooled until no rules are necessary."


Chittister retells a story from the ancients:


"What action shall I perform to attain God?" the disciple asked the elder.


"If you wish to attain God," the elder said, "there are two things you must know.  The first is that all efforts to attain God are of no avail."


"And the second?" the disciple insisted.


"The second is that you must act as if you did not know the first," the elder said.


"Clearly,"  Chittister concludes, "great pursuers of the spiritual life know that the secret of the spiritual life is to live it until it becomes real."  (The Rule of St. Benedict:   Insights for the Ages - New York:   The Crossroad Publishing Company, 1991, 29 - 30).
 

While Christian practices and discipline should mark the lives of all the faithful throughout the year, Lent is a particular time when we recognize that too often we wander away and that God calls us back. It is an invitation to remember and return to God with all our hearts by reengaging the disciplines so that they do become a way of life.


I pray that you will accept the invitation to a holy Lent and practice the disciplines of prayer, study and service with renewed energy and faith. Above all, I pray that you will rediscover through these practices and disciplines the depths of God's love for you shown in Christ Jesus.


May God bless you as you journey the pilgrim way of Lent.


In Christ, 

 

 

The Right Reverend William H. (Chip) Stokes, D.D.
Bishop of New Jersey 

 

Good News Stories and More

 

Ashes to Go 2015

 

Over 30 congregations distributed ashes and blessings at more than 30 locations throughout the diocese.


Click here for press coverage, reflections and photos!

 


Congratulations to our CFO, Canon Phyllis Jones!

 

Canon Jones is the recipient of a Woman of Achievement Award from The Mercer County Commission on the Status of Women. This award honors volunteers who give to their communities above and beyond and this is absolutely true of Canon Jones, both in her work throughout the diocese and in her efforts with UrbanPromise Trenton. Canon Jones will be honored at a reception on Tuesday, March 3, 2015. 


Bishop's Spring Conference:

Discipleship and Mission
A One-Day Conference

Saturday, April 18, 2015 9 AM - 3 PM 

Join us for an event that will bring together spectacular leaders of Christian Formation in a exploration of new strategies for forming disciples in today's challenging and transforming twenty-first century landscape at Trinity Cathedral in Trenton.

Register now through March 16 and pay only $10!
Beginning March 17, the registration fee rises to $20.
Click here to register.

 


231st Diocesan Convention
Hyatt Regency, Princeton

February 27-28 

 

More information about the 2015 Convention of the Diocese of New Jersey, including nomination and registration materials, may be found here

A Recommendation from Our Canon to the Ordinary

Dear Colleagues in Ministry,

 

The Episcopal Church Building Fund is having its annual symposium ("Buildings for a New Tomorrrow") April 13-15, this year in Raleigh, NC.  Having attended this conference the past three years I highly recommend it as one of the best things happening in the Episcopal Church.  This conference is a great gathering of creative minds, people who are experimenting and adapting, making church happen in vibrant and dynamic ways.  

 

Here's a link to the website: http://www.ecbf.org/bfnt/ where you can get more information and register.  Check it out!

 

-The Rev. Canon John W. Sosnowski

Ministry Institute Events in January and February


  

 

 

Every week, we'll be listing upcoming Ministry Institute events here; click here for the full listing

 

Enriching your Prayer Life
February 21

St. David, Cranbury

Abuse Awareness Workshop
March 7
Grace-St. Paul, Mercerville

Abuse Awareness Workshop
March 14

Church of the Advent, Cape May


March 14 & 21
Trinity Church, Princeton
 
 
Annual Clergy Day and Chrism Mass
March 31
Trinity Cathedral, Trenton


Happening 24
April 10-12
Murray Grove, Lanoka Harbor, NJ

Recovery Sunday Celebration
April 19
Trinity Cathedral, Trenton 
 
Anti-Racism Training
April 23-25
Christ Church, Toms River

Abuse Awareness Workshop
April 25
St. Elizabeth, Elizabeth

Abuse Awareness Workshop 
April 25

St. John, Bernardsville

Training for Lectors
April 25
St. John the Evangelist, New Brunswick
  
May 2
St. Mary, Pt. Pleasant Beach


Telling Our Stories
May 2 
St Mark, Basking Ridge

Spring Youth Event
May 15-17
Camp Lebanon, Lebanon 

LGBT Older Adults

May 16
St. James, Long Branch


Abuse Awareness Workshop 
May 23
St. Mark, Keansburg  

Senior Baccalaureate Service
May 31
Trinity Cathedral, Trenton 
The Diocese of New Jersey
(609) 394-5281
808 West State St, Trenton, NJ 08618