The E-Newspaper of the Episcopal Diocese of Hawai'i
Reporting on the events & activities in our Diocese and beyond...
Friday, October 28
Education Day with
The Rev. Gay Clark Jennings
and Dr. Kim Payton
Celebrating the Bishop's 10th Anniversary
Saturday, October 29
48TH ANNUAL MEETING OF CONVENTION
Bishop's Address to the Convention
The following is Bishop Robert Fitzpatrick's Address given at the 48th Annual Meeting of Convention on Saturday, October 29, 2016, where he opened with the following Scripture:
"We have many parts in one body, but the parts don't all have the same function. In the same way, though there are many of us, we are one body in Christ, and individually we belong to each other. We have different gifts that are consistent with God's grace that has been given to us. If your gift is prophecy, you should prophesy in proportion to your faith. If your gift is service, devote yourself to serving. If your gift is teaching, devote yourself to teaching. If your gift is encouragement, devote yourself to encouraging. The one giving should do it with no strings attached. The leader should lead with passion. The one showing mercy should be cheerful. Love should be shown without pretending. Hate evil, and hold on to what is good. Love each other like the members of your family. Be the best at showing honor to each other. Don't hesitate to be enthusiastic - be on fire in the Spirit as you serve the Lord! Be happy in your hope, stand your ground when you're in trouble, and devote yourselves to prayer. Contribute to the needs of God's people, and welcome strangers into your home. Bless people who harass you - bless and don't curse them. Be happy with those who are happy, and cry with those who are crying. Consider everyone as equal, and don't think that you're better than anyone else. Instead associate with people who have no status. Don't think that you're so smart. Don't pay back anyone for their evil actions with evil actions, but show respect for what everyone else believes is good. If possible, to the best of your ability, live at peace with all people." Romans 12:4-18
So, Paul tells us about being the Church - the Body of Christ.
My Convention Address this year is going to be a little different than in past years.
There will be no movie clips, no Blues Brothers, no Star Trek, no Barry White - no big production.
During the course of the Annual Meeting of Convention this year, there will be video clips, but not now - not as part my Convention address.
Yesterday at Education Day, we began our conversation about the future of the Episcopal Church in Hawaiʻi. So, my Address is about thanking some people as we prepare together to take time over the next few months to look to our future.
I was elected the Bishop of Hawaiʻi at the Annual Meeting of the Convention in 2006 - 10 years ago on October 20th. Much has happened since then and I am deeply grateful for your love, support and prayers. In these years, we have been through two strategic plans and three Mutual Ministry Reviews. I do think, however, that the current work we will be doing with the help of Dr. Kim Payton is something different and will set us on the course for the next several years as the Diocese of Hawaiʻi. I've also asked the Diocesan leadership that it be a time for me to review and evaluate my leadership of the Diocese, and to bring into new focus my ministry as a Bishop. It will be a time for me to take stock with the Standing Committee and the Diocesan Council of how I serve you and how we together can best engage God's mission. Yesterday was the beginning of the conversation. I urge you to be involved in the ongoing conversations over the next few months - and to pray.
Today, however, please forgive me for being a bit nostalgic. Perhaps it was the recent death of Bishop Browning that provoked this sense in me. As you know, he preached at my ordination as a Bishop. It could also be that I have been reflecting on those in whose debt I remain - those living and especially those no longer with us. It might be also that I am now a grandfather for the first time. Or even that the Chicago Cubs are in the World Series, my late mother's lifelong dream. Miracles still happen.
As we look to the future, I am incredibly thankful for the ministry and support of the Right Reverend Richard S. O. Chang. Dick is a friend, a mentor and a pastor to me. He regularly comes by the office in shorts, slippers and T-shirt just to check-in and to collect his mail. We regularly have lunch, and he listens and advises without being intrusive. He even sent me a note celebrating the Cubs' win of the National League pennant. That is quite a compliment coming from a Yankees' fan.
I am certain you know how very hard the staff of the Office of the Bishop works. A misconception can be that the Office of the Bishop is "the Diocese" or that there is a large bureaucracy somewhere here in the Cathedral of St. Andrew. That there is something called "the Diocese." Not true. This Convention is "the Diocese." Through the years, when doing classes with Vestries and Bishop's Committees, there is sometimes surprise when we discuss how small the Office of the Bishop really is. This handful of faithful servants cares for the Diocese, the congregations, lay leaders, clergy and me. In the past, the team included Tiare Ono, Marie Elesarke, Nancy Minuth, Lani Kaaihue, June Choriki, Liz Beasley and Sarah Klitzke. Though not currently in the Office, they are still an important part of our identity as a Diocese. I am grateful to those who have walked with them.
I have never been as thankful for or as confident in my staff as I am today. As certainly most of the clergy and lay leaders know my ministry and the office owes much to the organization and the steady hand of Irina Martikainen, my Executive Assistant. Her management of the Episcopal side of the office and her care of clergy is exemplary. She brings calm and order. Without her support, these past few years without a Canon in the office would have been overwhelming. Likewise, the presence of Charmaine Ito as the Office and Property Manager has allowed us to be confident that the management of the Annual Meeting, the diocesan properties, relations on Queen Emma Square, human resources and office operations are handled with care and understanding. Few people can be aware of all that she does. The team of Irina and Charmaine has been invaluable to me as the Bishop. Irina and Charmaine, thank you.
For over 25 years, Peter Pereira has faithfully served this Diocese as its Treasurer and Chief Financial Officer. His championing of planned giving and stewardship are well-known throughout the Episcopal Church. With next to no staff and a handful of volunteers, we have programs and practices that are sought out by dioceses two and three times our size. Peter, and Athena Chan, our Bookkeeper, continue to provide services and support to our Diocese, congregations, our lay professionals and our clergy unequaled in most dioceses of the Episcopal Church. Peter, well done and thank you. Athena, thank you.
Others like Katrina Luksovsky and Sonny Liu are in the office part-time to keep track of files and organizing activities. Sharon Billingsley oversees travel. Sybil Nishioka handles Communications from Kaua'i. Thank you.
We also now have Sandy Graham with us. In accepting the call to be our Canon for Congregational Life and Leadership, he has already provided me with renewed confidence to take up new ministries. I look forward to years of shared ministry.
Volunteers are essential. Norma Chun who keeps track of ministry licenses and required trainings, and Stuart Ching who cares for the Diocesan Archives as the Historiographer. Norma and her husband, Frank, are also the Co-Chaplains to retired clergy. The past, present and future are cared for on behalf of every one of us by faithful diocesan volunteers.
The Chancellors of the Diocese of Hawaiʻi are all volunteers. They provide hours of service to us. As you know, last year Martha Im stepped down as Chancellor after eight years, and Wayne Yoshigai stepped up to serve the Diocese. When Martha first talked to Wayne, she assured him that this is a calm ministry - at least most of the time in Hawaiʻi. Unfortunately, 2016 has been an unusual year. Wayne and I meet monthly, and together we have had some unusual and even unique situations. Other than members of the Standing Committee and the Diocesan Council, most people will never know the many hours and the wise counsel that Wayne has given to the Diocese and to me. I think we will both be happy to see the New Year. Thank you, Wayne.
With these, I must also thank the members of Diocesan Council and Standing Committee who are the faithful guardians of the Episcopal Church in Hawaiʻi. I meet privately with the President of Standing Committee every month to discuss the life of the Diocese. The wise advice and listening ear of Gerry Madison and past Standing Committee Presidents - like Moki Hino, Karen Sender and Cecilia Fordham - make the ministry of being the Bishop a joy. That is true for all those who serve in leadership and those of you who have served in the past. Thank you.
And for you here today, here in this Annual Meeting, thank you. You are the lifeblood of the Body of Christ that is the Episcopal Church in Hawaiʻi.
As a Diocese, we are blessed to look into the world. While some might believe the ocean to be a barrier, it is for us the life source and that which connects us to North America, Asia and the entire Pacific. Creativity, care and open-mindedness are evident in our congregations. Until some difficulties this past year, we have seen continued growth numerically and spiritually as a Diocese. As your Bishop, I feel supported and empowered by our clergy and lay leaders. I am especially proud of our Priests and Deacons. We are blessed by such servants of God. Thank you.
What then is ahead of us? We know too well that the world is changing - getting smaller. I am proud of you and of congregations for reaching out into the world, for caring for the hungry and the houseless, for being harbors of safety, for boldly living the maxim: "there are no outcasts." We must however refine our outreach and refocus our mission. I think that can best happen by better working together, by sharing ministry, and by seeing ourselves as "one team" and not isolated congregations. We live on islands and we need one another. We also must listen to one another to chart the course for the future.
This year in my address, I have not outlined all of the things that we have done in the past year - the conferences and the speakers, the ministries and the struggles. I will not highlight what is coming in the next year. Yes, there are plans for training, there are workshops, and there will be much happening. What I hope I have done is to express to you my deep appreciation for being your Bishop. I also must call us to a short season of prayer and reflection. These next few months will be a time for conversation. It began yesterday and it will continue from now until next year's Annual Meeting. I have asked for a personal performance review to be shared with the Standing Committee by March 10, 2017, the 10th anniversary of my ordination as a Bishop. That work will help me plan my continuing education and the focus of my ministry for the next few years. As the work continues we will create a new strategic plan and operational goals for the Diocese and our common life together. This will only have meaning and impact if many voices are part of the conversation. Many voices that are not in this room right now and even voices that are not currently heard in our congregations. We are seeking to fulfill God's mission in the islands of Hawaiʻi for the next period of our life together.
So, this Address is just the beginning. In fact, it will not be complete for several months. In some ways, I feel that we have finished the first part of our journey together. We are pulling the canoes onto an island for a rest and to gather provisions. We must reconsider the stars and the winds. We must talk among ourselves and pray to Akua. When the morning comes we will set out again sailing toward the rising Sun and our island home.
With that in mind, I again say thank you.
I give thanks to God that I've been called to these islands and to be with you. I give thanks to God for my life with Bea and our sons. I give thanks that we are on this voyage together.
I leave you in this address, as I often do, with the words of St. Paul,
"Therefore, my beloved, be steadfast, immovable, always excelling in the work of the Lord, because you know that in the Lord your labor is not in vain." I Corinthians 15:58
am proud of you and of congregations for
reaching out into the world, for caring for the hungry and the houseless, for being harbors of safety, for boldly living the maxim:
The Bishop was delighted to discover that busy "elves" had showered baby gifts and diapers on the stage for him. The Bishop welcomed his first grandchild, Marcus Fitzpatrick, just a few days before the Annual Meeting. Congratulations to the Fitzpatrick family!
EDUCATION DAY & CONVENTION XLVIII
The 48th Annual Meeting of Convention
October 28 & 29, 2016, The Cathedral of St. Andrew
FRIDAY, OCTOBER 28
The Diocese of Hawai'i was honored to have the Rev. Gay Clark Jennings as the Keynote Speaker and Convention Chaplain for this year's Education Day and Annual Meeting. As the first ordained woman elected to this position at General Convention in 2012, Jennings works closely with the Presiding Bishop and other church leaders for "wholeness, reconciliation and justice in the Episcopal Church and the world." She is committed to fostering a new generation of leaders in the Episcopal Church and encouraging the church to stand with children in need through the actions of General Convention and the work of Episcopalians through the church.
During registration and before Education Day started, the Rev. Diane Martinson from St. Peter's Episcopal Church, arranged for interested attendees to gather together to discuss the homeless/houseless situation in Hawai'i. This was in connection with the Bishop's invitation for
delegates to review last year's Resolution 5 concerning the growing homeless crisis, and to give thought to certain questions in preparation for conversation at this year's Annual Meeting, and as it turned out, for Education Day as well. Pictured below, over 30 people gathered in the St. Peter's parish hall for lively discussion.
On the Threshold: Baptismal Life in the 21st Century
Heading back to the Cathedral of St. Andrew, attendees began assembling in Tenney Theatre. Over 170 people attended this year's Education Day with the topic: "On the Threshold: Baptismal Life in the 21st Century" addressing the changes taking place in the world that are deeply affecting the way people worship and live out their baptismal life. It was a subject pointing to change that would be a constant theme throughout the day with discussions about the challenges and opportunities that it brings. Jennings shared that "faithful people are striving to discern the call to participate in God's mission in new ways."
Armed with startling statistics, Jennings talked about how we have to "think again about God's mission for the Episcopal Church in our time." With churches throughout the nation facing shrinking operating revenues and declines in pledge income, while clergy salaries and costs keep rising, the "old model" of a full-time priest in a dedicated church building is becoming unsustainable, something that has already affected the Diocese of Hawai'i, especially with the high cost living here.
Quoting from one of her favorite poets, John O'Donohue, who wrote about the change we are facing, Jennings asked us to focus not on the "winter mentality" of change, but the "spring secretly at work within the heart of winter" where we "find ourselves vulnerable to a flourish of possibility and we are suddenly negotiating the challenge of a threshold." She compared this to the Episcopal Church's current challenge of negotiating a threshold, and how we redefine and discover God's mission for us.
Jennings said that as we think about change, and by being secure in our identity, we can continue to grow and perpetuate what we have to offer, even when things are uncertain. Utilizing the Hawaiian word "ho'omau" (perseverance) and thereby becoming more courageous through its practice, she expressed that this value of Hawaiian culture is exactly what the rest of the Episcopal Church can learn from. Attendees were then asked to break into groups to discuss how each person is practicing
ho'omau in this changing world. An open mic session followed where some shared their personal experiences.
Despite the gloomy statistics and struggles that churches face, Jennings focused on the ability and strength of Episcopalians to adapt and to be "elastic" as coined by Matthew Sheep, a business professor at Illinois State University.
"I see people finding new ways to use the rituals and traditions of Anglicanism in public liturgy," said Jennings, "Clergy and laypeople are inventing new ways of taking liturgy into the world through commemorations like Ashes to Go, like Stations of the Cross that mark places where gun violence has happened, like Blessings of the Animals at Humane Society shelters. Our identity is elastic to know that we can make the ancient rituals of the church speak to the world we live in today."
Jennings went on to quote Emily Mellott, an Alternate Deputy from Chicago who said, "I think we impoverish ourselves if we limit our symbols and sacraments to just what's possible in the walls of the church. We learn things by taking liturgy outside the walls that teach us new ways of seeing God inside the walls." That's elastic identity.
She also reminded us that change is difficult and churches have to learn to live with resistance. "So if we're really going to stretch our identities," said Jennings, "we're going to have to change the ways we think. We're going to have to improvise and we're going to have to try new things that will sometimes -- maybe even often -- fail at first."
Jennings asked attendees to discuss among themselves where they see signs of change and signs that we are moving closer to God's mission for the Episcopal Church. In another open mic session, people shared the different ways that their churches have introduced new ways of worshiping and serving in the community; stories from around the Diocese that were both encouraging and inspiring.
In closing, Jennings said that the hardest change is to be able to trust and to cross the threshold without being afraid, but she also shared her excitement in breaking rules and trying new things, even though she knows we won't get to see it through to the end. "God's mission is much longer than our lives, or our buildings' lives, or our bishops' lives, or even our denomination's life. David didn't get to build the temple. Moses didn't get to enter the Promised Land. We're not going to get to know the rest of the story for the Episcopal Church."
"Let's cross this threshold without being afraid. Let's not just wonder what God's mission is for us, let's go out and seek it with elastic identities and grateful hearts." --
The Rev. Gay Clark Jennings
The morning session ended with a break for lunch served under the Aloha Tent with lots of fellowship and discussion in the air.
Mutual Ministry Review Workshop
After a filling bento lunch and time to reflect on the morning session, attendees reassembled in Tenney Theatre for the afternoon portion of Education Day, which was led by Dr. Kim Payton, an organizational psychologist who is currently working with the Diocese on strategic planning. Payton brings with him over 30 years of organizational experience to develop change strategies, leadership assessment and provide counseling.
Before introducing Dr. Payton, the Bishop spoke about the work that has already begun to address the challenges and issues facing the Diocese. That work involves the development of a new Strategic Plan, the third since his role as Bishop Diocesan.
To help develop this plan over the next year, the Bishop has requested that a fourth Mutual Ministry Review of him be conducted that will not only evaluate the work that has been done, but to help him discern his role in moving the Diocese forward. He welcomed the voices in the Diocese to help him through the process, and this particular gathering was the start of the "conversation."
The Bishop introduced Dr. Payton who has worked with numerous large organizations and companies in Hawai'i with similar strategic planning needs, and will be guiding the Diocese through this process. With the continuing theme of change, Payton spoke about the need for churches to determine where they want to go, and the importance of everyone being in agreement; that all parts of the body be in harmony. When faced with change, people need to "feel" more deeply together bringing inspiration, intuition and compassion into the discussion.
Presented with two questions to consider, participants broke into groups led by designated facilitators to discuss what the Episcopal Church in Hawai'i is doing in their communities, and how the Office of the Bishop is supporting them. Groups met in the Von Holt Room and under the outdoor Aloha tent where the sounds of conversation floating about were serious, joyful and impassioned.
Upon reconvening, an open mic session was held to discuss each group's findings. The Bishop sat quietly in the front row, intently focused on each person's comments, and responding when needed. Input shared pointed to areas that needed attention or were lacking, but there was also encouragement and praise for what was working well. Notes taken by the facilitators will be used to help with the MMR and a new strategic plan for the Diocese.
Following Education Day, the Opening Eucharist took place in the Cathedral of St. Andrew. Students from the St. Andrew's Schools played a large role in the service, serving as acolytes, offering a hula kahiko and providing music with voices of angels. Pictured above, Cathedral Verger Ann Hansen leads the processional while halau and choir members follow.
Under the direction of Kumu Hula Yurena Namahanaokalewalani Melian Fuller, the school's halau, Hui Hau'oli, performed
A Maunakea 'o Kalani. The St. Andrew's Schools' Choir, directed by Naomi Castro, sang to perfection and was accompanied by the Cathedral's Interim Music Director and Organist, Todd Beckham.
Bishop Robert Fitzpatrick was the Celebrant in a multi-ethnic service that featured readings in Tongan and Kewapi, and portions of the Holy Communion read in Hawaiian and Ilokano. Pictured above, Soanne Lino and Noreen Kasu read the lessons in Tongan and Kewapi, respectively; after the Renewal of Baptismal Vows, the Revs. Christopher Golding and Heather Patton-Graham sprinkle holy water during Asperges.
For his sermon, the Bishop carried an 'o'o, a digging tool of ancient Hawai'i, and compared it to our life as Christians, turning and preparing the soil for planting the seeds of change and love that we hope will grow and flourish. He reflected on the Gospel reading from Matthew of loving our enemies and the love we share to all as followers of Jesus Christ.
During announcements, the Bishop introduced St. Andrew's School's new Head of School, Dr. Ruth Fletcher (above left) who also served as an Oblation Bearer with Jennifer Burke, the school's Director of Institutional Advancement (center), while Deacon Peter Wu prepared the Sacraments and Cathedral Verger Roth Puahala directed traffic. Above right, the Rev. Paul Nahoa Lucas and the Rev. Imelda Padasdao joined the Bishop at the altar, reciting Words of Institution in Hawaiian and Ilocano.
Celebrating the 10th Anniversary of the Election of
Robert L. Fitzpatrick as Bishop Diocesan
A very special Aloha Reception followed, celebrating the Bishop's 10th Anniversary of his election as Bishop Diocesan. Folks were treated to a delicious Hawaiian buffet served up by members from the Episcopal Church of West O'ahu. Pictured above, the Bishop and Bea pose with the celebration cake; the Rev. Cn. Alexander Graham introduces the guests of honor and lei are presented; the Bishop shares a few words.
Joyful Hawaiian music was provided by the duo, Mokuleia, who are Episcopal church members Mark Haworth and Mila Polevia. A
featuring clips of the Bishop's ordination and photos spanning his 10 years of service as Bishop, played throughout the evening. The video can be viewed on the Diocesan website's homepage through the end of the year, or on YouTube HERE.
Lots of fellowship, food, music and laughter were shared in a joyous celebration!
SATURDAY, OCTOBER 29
48th Annual Meeting of Convention
Early Saturday morning, clergy and delegates arrived for the 48th Annual Meeting of Convention, and were pleasantly surprised to find a hot breakfast of fried rice and eggs-to-order along with platters of fresh fruit and pastries waiting. Folks quickly lined up as two cooks whipped up omelettes and conversation.
Despite a slight delay with late arriving delegates, the meeting convened at 9:00 AM. Bishop Robert Fitzpatrick called the meeting to order and introduced Convention Chaplain, the Rev. Gay Clark Jennings, who offered the opening prayer.
Special guests were introduced and presented with leis including a delegation from the Philippines. Also recognized was a
familiar face who has been a part of several diocesan events and meetings in the past, Canon Peter Ng, Asia and the Pacific & Anglican Relations Officer of the Episcopal Church. Ng has served as our Diocesan liaison with the church-wide staff for several years. It was a bittersweet moment when Ng announced his retirement during a speech later in the afternoon.
Canonically resident and licensed clergy new to the Diocese were introduced along with deacons and priests who were ordained during the past year including the Rev. Craig Vance from Good Shepherd pictured above far right. Below, those on stage included (from left) the Rev. Moki Hino, Secretary, Jane Tonokawa, Dispatch of Business Chair, Bishop Robert Fitzpatrick, and Chancellor Wayne Yoshigai.
Although the Bishop normally gives his Address to the Convention shortly after introductions, organizers anticipated voting delays in this year's meeting, and decided to proceed with orders of business first so that part of the voting process could take place.
This year, Deputies and Alternates to General Convention were being elected, and a record twelve clergy were nominated for Clergy Deputies. With a minimum number of votes required to elect a Deputy, and the potential for votes to be spread too thin to meet that requirement, the possibility for a second and even third ballot was taken into consideration.
Orders of business commenced with a Quorum Report by Keane Akao, followed by a
report by Jane Tonokawa on the resolution (there was only one) and ballots. Ballots were then cast for General Convention Deputies and open governance positions on the Diocesan Ballot.
With the first round of voting completed, the Bishop proceeded with his Address (shown at top) to the Convention
that opened with a letter from Paul (Romans 12:4-18) who tells us about being the Church - the Body of Christ.
There was a noticeable sound of disappointment when the Bishop informed everyone that there would be no movie clips or celebrity "appearances" this year, but he delivered a heart-felt address, reflecting on his past 10 years as Bishop. He thanked his mentors, and those who have worked throughout the years in the Office of the Bishop. He gave thanks to his family, to all in the Diocese who have faithfully served on committees, the Chancellors, and all the dedicated volunteers in our churches. Quoting the late Bishop Edmond Browning, he stressed that "there are no outcasts" and that we must work together as one team, taking time to show our appreciation by thanking people and thanking God. He closed with a reflection for going forward and the inevitable changes we will need to embrace and address.
Orders of business continued with the Treasurer's Report which was adopted. The sole Resolution on the 2017 minimum Clergy Compensation and Benefits Policy for the Episcopal Diocese of Hawai'i was discussed and passed. Following a short break, the 2017-2019 Budget was presented by Dixie Kaetsu on behalf of the Diocesan Council shown standing below. The budget was adopted with one amendment concerning income on the MacCray House to go towards a youth leader. The final approved budget can be viewed on the Diocesan website HERE under Budgets.
The results of the first ballot cast for General Convention Deputies was announced. With 93 votes required for election, all four Lay Deputies were successfully elected: Keane Akao, John Decker, Pamela Fern and Ryan Kusumoto. For Clergy Deputies, only Rev. Moki Hino received the required votes, and a second ballot was cast.
There were five Special Orders of Business on the agenda, the first of which took place just before the lunch break. The Rev. David Turner, Executive Director of Camp Mokule'ia, provided an update on the camp with a slideshow that included the extensive damage caused by last winter's large surf. He also introduced the young adults working at the camp, some of whom came through the Episcopal Church's Young Adult Service Corp (YASC). As in years past, they set up an information table with t-shirts and plants to give away during the lunch break. Turner also mentioned their upcoming fundraiser in November that will make available "camperships" to those who cannot afford the fees.
Rev. Jennings offered a reflection and Grace before the meeting went into recess for lunch.
The meeting reconvened at 1:00 PM, with a report on the first Diocesan Ballot. With the exception of one opening on the Standing Committee, all positions and appointments were filled and confirmed. A report on the second General Convention Deputy Ballot was also made, with votes still too scattered to confirm the three remaining slots. The Bishop then called for a second Diocesan Ballot for the Standing Committee opening and a third and final General Convention Ballot for Clergy Deputy to proceed.
The remaining Special Orders of Business followed including a hot topic on the homeless in Hawai'i. The Rev. Brian Grieves presented an impassioned report on Social Justice - Houselessness in Hawai'i. The subject, which has reached crisis levels in our islands, has been a fertile outreach ministry for many of our churches. Grieves shared a video clip from
Homeless in Paradise
, a documentary being featured on local stations that brings a sobering light to the struggles of life on the streets of Hawai'i. The Rev. Diane Martinson from St. Peter's read last year's
that addressed homelessness, and asked delegates to break out into groups to discuss the questions that the Bishop had raised in preparation for the meeting. In an open mic session, people shared their thoughts, stories, ideas and concerns faced with paradoxes on service versus safety, especially with churches that have schools with young children. The Rev. David Gierlach from St. Elizabeth's, who has been a leader and outspoken force for justice and equality in the community urged people and churches to join
(Faith Action for Community Equity) an interfaith organization dedicated to fighting poverty and injustice. Gierlach, who also appears in the documentary film, shared how the growing number of homeless are families, and how important it is to write to our legislators and remain vigilant.
The Rev. Moki Hino (above right) presented a video entitled
about our beloved Holy Sovereigns, King Kamehameha IV and Queen Emma. Hino and Holy Apostle church member Dixie Kaetsu, produced the film with a Diocesan grant that featured reflections, prayer and thoughts on the royal couple from people around the Diocese. The video was made available on a thumb drive for all churches to share, and came with a transcript in book form, just in time for the Feast of Holy Sovereigns which is celebrated on November 20 this year. The video is also currently available for viewing on the Diocesan website's
"Where We've Been"
page and also on YouTube
Canon Peter Ng, Asia and the Pacific & Anglican Relations Officer of the Episcopal Church, gave an update of what is happening in the broader Episcopal Church. As a deeply admired guest at several diocesan events and past Annual Meetings, those who know him were saddened to hear that this was likely his last convention with the Diocese since he will be retiring in 2017. Following his talk, a special video of the Presiding Bishop was played entitled
The Jesus Movement: Loving, Liberating and Life-giving.
In between the Special Orders of Business, results from the third General Convention Ballot were announced which confirmed the Revs. Brian Grieves, Malcolm Keleawe Hee and Paul Lillie as the Clergy Deputies. They join Hino who was elected earlier during the day. The Standing Committee clergy opening also went to a third ballot with the Rev. Paul Lillie finally elected for that four-year term.
Rev. Jennings was called upon to offer a closing reflection. Tapping into the Bishop's message for what we are grateful for, she recognized and praised her assistant, Betsey Bell (pictured below left), who accompanied her on this trip.
Rounding out the afternoon was the annual passing of the Bishop's Mitre with all monies collected going to the St. Andrew's Schools' Scholarship fund, and the adoption of the Courtesy Resolutions. The meeting was adjourned at 3:10 PM with the singing of the Queen's Prayer.
The official Journal of the meeting is available for viewing on the Convention webpage
Behind the Scenes
Putting on the Diocese's Education Day and Annual Meeting takes months of planning and organizing, and Charmaine Ito (pictured below left), Office Manager/Property Manager in the Office of the Bishop, once again tackled the mammoth task, mobilizing workers and volunteers to put on another successful event.
Mahalo nui loa to Charmaine and the Office of the Bishop: Irina Martikainen, Katrina Luksovsky, Peter Pereira, Athena Chan, the Rev. Cn. Alexander Graham, Norma Chun, and to the dozens of people, too numerous to list, that helped with meeting preparation, set-up, registration, ballot counting, meals and breakdown.
Special thanks to Keane Akao and Shana Ikeda (above third from left) with the Episcopal Church of West O'ahu for catering the Friday reception and providing the delicious breakfast on Saturday, and to the St. Andrew's Schools for their participation in the Friday Opening Eucharist. Many thanks also to Ramona Simmons, Cathedral Secretary, Chad Gibson and the rest of the Cathedral staff for their assistance and support. We can't thank enough Aunty Mabel Gallegos, Sharon Billingsley for handling travel arrangements, the Rev. Daniel Leatherman (above far right) for his help with the A/V projection set-up, Eric Johnson with the Hawaii Theatre for Youth for manning the lights and sound system, and to Joanna Polevia for her technical expertise on the laptop each year that helps keep the meeting moving smoothly.
Pictured above are just a few of the helping hands, from left: Katrina Luksovsky, Sonny Liu, Pam Fern, Dr. Ha'aheo Guanson and Beth Fincke, sorting ballots and putting together delegate packets in preparation for the Annual Meeting.
Slideshows with more photos of this event can be viewed on the Diocesan website HERE or on the Episcopal Diocese of Hawai'i Facebook page HERE. All photos by Sybil Nishioka.
Sybil Nishioka, Editor & Communications Contractor
The electronic Hawaiian Church Chronicle is the official news publication of the Episcopal Diocese of Hawai'i. All policy, editorial and administrative decisions are under the direction of the editor in consultation with the Bishop's Office. The Chronicle welcomes suggestions, story ideas, comments and opinions from its readers. Send articles, letters, news and photographs (electronic files preferred) to:
, Office of the Bishop, 229 Queen Emma Square, Honolulu, HI 96813