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 News and Updates from the Office of the Bishop

September                                                                     No. 300
WELCOME to the Episcopal Church in the Diocese of Northwest Texas--a place where the vast open plains are as wondrous as 
 the big sky above!
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To view a video presentation about this unique area, created 
by Weiman Meinzer, renowned photographer in the State of Texas, and the late Doug Smith, local pianist,
click on the graphic above.
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As depicted in the  pectoral cross of Bishop J. Scott Mayer  (right), the stars, moon, and sun are representative of the beauty one may find in this region of Texas.  

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The landscape, covering 77,000 square miles, is as diverse as the cities and people, with the canyons and rangelands of the Staked Plains; agricultural fields abounding; and the rough and ready country of the Rolling Plains and Permian Basin. 
The people here are known for their warm and friendly smiles, making one feel like an old and trusted friend.
 
Convention 2017 - "I love to tell the story!"

The 59th Annual Diocesan Convention will be held October 12-14, 2017 at Church of the Heavenly Rest and the Abilene Convention Center. Online registration is underway and can be accessed by following this link.  Forms have also been posted on the website and can be downloaded by following this  link.

The guest speaker for this year's Convention will be  Kathy Culmer , author,
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professional storyteller, speaker and 
teacher. According to her website, Kathy has taught on the secondary and college levels in a variety of subject areas ranging from English to Speech Communications, to Broadcast Journalism, to Religious Education. She has also been a professional workshop presenter on storytelling in a variety of venues, including church, school, retreats, and libraries, as well as college campuses. "I love to tell the story," the theme for the convention, will teach us how to tell our own stories, as the Presiding Bishop, the Most Rev. Michael B. Curry, urged us when he visited the diocese in April.

We look forward to conducting the Diocese's business and enjoying learning to tell our stories!

A Message from the Bishop's Office
 
Due to ongoing health problems, Deacon Nancy Igo is taking medical leave from her position on the Bishop's staff.   Going forward, her duties have been divided between Elizabeth Thames, the Diocesan Administrator, and Anna Mora, the Diocesan Finance Manager.  Please keep Nancy in your prayers during this time.  

Nancy's office email address will not be monitored and is being forwarded to the communications email below.  P lease see the list for contact information for any areas she has been handling:

Communications,  Safeguarding programs, background checks, disaster coordination and Episcopal Asset Map  - Elizabeth Thames at dnwtcomm@nwtdiocese.org or  ethames@nwtdiocese.org

Insurance, including medical, dental, property and casualty, as well as risk management, and pension - Anna Mora at  amora@nwtdiocese.org


Noteworthy News in the Diocese

Haney Wins Award

The Rev. James Haney V entered a national competition recently, for the best sermon combining science and faith, sponsored by Fuller 
Theological Seminary's Office for Science, Theology, & Religion Initiatives (STAR). The challenge was open to Catholic, Protestant, and Orthodox clergy. First place comes with an award underwritten by the John Templeton Foundation of $1,500 for the preacher and a matching $1,500 for their church. 

Fr. Jim was notified this summer that his sermon, entitled "God Who Made the World,"  WON 1st place!!! His sermon may be found at   stpaulslubbock.org under "Sermons," and then "May 21," or click below for a pdf of the sermon. 


Congratulations to Fr. Jim, and to St. Paul's for calling such a talented preacher!

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Wrampelmeier Named Outstanding Leader

Archdeacon Chris  Wrampelmeier  was presented with the 2017 Alison Unger Award for outstanding leadership on August 8, 2017 by the Texas Family Law Foundation. Chris was ordained to the diaconate November 9, 2003 and appointed as diocesan Archdeacon in 2007.  Along with his service as Archdeacon, he is the vice chair of Amarillo's Animal Management & Welfare Board, a board member and former president of the Amarillo-Panhandle Humane Society, and the counselor for the Downtown Women's Center.  We congratulate Chris on this recognition!



St. Stephen's, Sweetwater has New Community Outreach Venue
by Jared Houze, Vicar, St. Stephen's

Argos Brewhouse & Bookseller, a community outreach ministry of St.
Stephen's Episcopal Church in Sweetwater, has organized a fundraising event along side other downtown businesses for Hurricane Harvey relief efforts. Al l day Saturday, September 2, retail shops along Oak Street in Sweetwater will donate a portion of all sales to hurricane relief efforts. Later that evening, Argos will be showing the big college football season opener (Alabama vs. Florida State ) and a portion of all drink and book sales that evening will be combined with the total from the other businesses. Ludlum Engineering, one of Sweetwater's largest employers, has generously agreed to match whatever amount Argos and these other wonderful shops donate.  All money raised will be given to the Episcopal Relief and Development fund aiding in Hurricane Harvey relief and assistance.

So, if you're in the Sweetwater area this coming Saturday - or don't mind making a day trip - all are welcome to visit and shop at Gypsy Jangle and the Flower Box and later that evening Argos will open their doors at 6:30 to top off the event.

Argos' grand opening will be Saturday, October 7th. All in the diocese are invited and St. Stephen's is excited to welcome fellow Episcopalians to what will be an exciting evening.    

For more information on this new outreach venue, please contact The Rev. Jared Houze at 325.518.6410 or jfosterhouze@gmail.com.  


Clergy Positions  In Northwest Texas

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There are currently two clergy positions available in the diocese.

For more information, click the links, which will take you to the parish website to view the parish profile. 


 

If you would like to submit a name for consideration for either position, please contact Canon Mike Ehmer, Diocesan Transition Minister, at mehmer@nwtdiocese.org.

 

(Please note: St. Nicholas' is in the beginning stages of their search, thus no portfolio is available at this time.)


Episcopal Youth Event Wrap-up
by Renee Haney, Youth Coordinator

"If you want to change the world, follow Jesus!"  Those were the words from Presiding Bishop Michael Curry at the Opening Eucharist of EYE 2017!  And 1,300 youth, sponsors, clergy and bishops got fired up by his words!

During our time together at University of Central Oklahoma, Episcopalians from across the nine provinces gathered together to eat, play, worship, pray and learn together.  We attended workshops on peace, inclusivity, confirmation, social media and the church, and we listened to one another. We heard from youth about Kids4Peace, and people who were involved in the Oklahoma City (OKC) bombing.  We went on a field trip, visiting museums around OKC.  We attended a Red Dirt Carnival, and watched a "What did I just Eat?" contest between Oklahoma's Bishop Ed Konieczny, and Presiding Bishop Michael B Curry.  We closed our OKC Day by processing down Robinson Rd., from St. Paul's Cathedral, to the OKC National Memorial, for a moving compline service by the memorial pool. 

Mayer's Minions from Northwest Texas and Ft. Worth
  
Our diocese was well represented by 12 youth and 3 sponsors, and we were blessed to have Bishop Scott join us for meals, worship, sessions and just to hang out.  Those attending were:  Caroline Asquith, Gracie Fehr, Kenda Fawell, Micha Huff, Ashton Millsaps, Gabbie Mullen, Nicholas Neighbors, John Plummer, Savannah Reese, Olivia Rowe, Michael Scarborough, Julia White, Chase Monson, D'Anne Asquith and Renee Haney. 

Thanks to all who supported us!  EYE gathers every three years for youth in grades 9-12th, and it is an event not to be missed!  

Let's follow Jesus and Change the World!
 

Announcing 
The Rev. David Huxley  Scholarship for  Bi-vocational Clergy

The School of Ordained Ministry (SOM) Class of 2018 would like to announce the creation of a scholarship fund  honoring the Rev. Dave Huxley. 

Fr. Dave has been serving as the rector of St. Nicholas in Midland, TX and mentor for the Class of 2018 in our diocesan SOM. Fr. Dave has been battling an illness that has forced him to take early retirement from both St. Nicholas and his role as SOM mentor.  As students, we have been blessed by his patience, quiet humor, and love of each of us. We would like to show our appreciation for Fr. Dave's contribution to our lives and future ministries by creating and providing preliminary funding for a scholarship in his honor.

We ask you to prayerfully consider joining us in contributing funds to support individuals in our diocese who feel called to ordained ministry but face financial obstacles which could prevent them from receiving the further education and formation they need to act on that call. 

The Rev. Dave Huxley Scholarship will be awarded based on need to help defer a portion of the cost of bi-vocational clergy training in our diocesan School of Ordained Ministry. 

If you are interested in contributing to this scholarship, please contact Elizabeth Thames at the Diocese of Northwest Texas, 806-763-1370 or ethames@nwtdiocese.org

If you would like to send Fr. Dave words of encouragement, they can be sent to: 6008 Pedernales Drive, Midland, Texas 79707 or dehuxrev@sbcglobal.net .

More About Fr. Dave
Prior to his call to the priesthood, Fr. Dave received a BS in Sociology from the University of Central Michigan. He served as a Crisis Intervention Worker for the Mental Health Center of Dane County, Wisconsin, followed by 20 years of service as a police officer there. Fr. Dave then discerned a call to the priesthood and attended Nashotah House Seminary and was ordained to the priesthood in 2004.

After his ordination, he served as Priest-in-Charge of St. John the Baptist Episcopal Church in Portage, Wisconsin.  He subsequently followed a call to become Rector of St. John's Episcopal Church in Vinita, Oklahoma.  Prior to his move to Texas in September 2013, Fr. Dave served part time as the vicar of St. Luke's Episcopal Church in Whitewater, Wisconsin, and part time as the campus minister for the Lutheran-Episcopal Campus Ministry at the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater. 

Fr. Dave was active in diocesan affairs in Oklahoma and Wisconsin.  He initiated a prison ministry in Oklahoma that has continued since his departure.   Additionally, Fr. Dave started a very ambitious program feeding students of the University of Wisconsin campus in Whitewater.   Since moving to the diocese of Northwest Texas, he has been active in several diocesan initiatives, has participated in ecumenical ministerial alliances in Midland, and worked with community service organizations, such as the Salvation Army.

More About School for Ordained Ministry
The purpose of the School of Ordained Ministry in the Diocese of Northwest Texas is to provide a quality theological education for the formation of priests and deacons.  It focuses on the education of talented students, who for various reasons cannot attend a residential seminary. 

The curriculum for SOM is based on the Iona School for Ministry in the Diocese of Texas.  This curriculum offers a three-year formational program that includes academic study of the Bible, Church History, and Theology/Christian Ethics.  The program also focuses on more practical class sessions with topics in Spirituality, Liturgy and Music, Theory and Practice of Ministry, and Social Justice topics.  Students learn about the order to which they feel called, and work with members of that order to determine what the shape of their future ordained ministry will be. 

For more information about SOM, please contact any of the following:
Deacon Melissa Wafer Cross (mlwcross@yahoo.com), Dean 
The Rev. Jim Haney V (frjim@stpaulslubbock.org), Mentor
The Rev. Robert Pace (rpace@standrewsamarillo.org), Mentor
The Rev.  Canon Mike Ehmer (mehmer@nwtdiocese.org), Canon to the Ordinary
Ms. Elizabeth Thames ( ethames@nwtdiocese.org ), Diocesan Administrator



by the Rev. Jay Sidebotham

And from the Wider Church...

Helping After the Storm

Statement from Bishop Mayer on Harvey:

Like all of you, I have been riveted by the news coming out of Rockport, Houston, and the other areas hit by Hurricane Harvey and its aftermath. As the full extent of the damage becomes known, it is clear that help will be needed for a very long time along the Texas Coast. While the immediate need is rescue of those in peril, assessment of long term needs is already beginning.
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Presiding Bishop Preaches during Union of Black  Episcopalians Eucharist

 Union of Black Episcopalians Eucharist - Preacher, The Most Rev. Michael Curry

[Episcopal News Service - Philadelphia, Pennsylvania] 
Presiding Bishop Michael Curry preached at African Episcopal Church of St. Thomas during a July 25 Eucharist commemorating the 225th anniversary of the black presence in the Episcopal Church.


June 29, 2017  

[Episcopal Diocese of San Diego] 
We are excited to announce the selection of former 
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Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori as our assisting bishop. Jefferts Schori will begin her tenure with us on Aug. 13. She will serve three-quarters time performing episcopal functions such as visitations, confirmations, ordinations and receptions. She will share with the standing committee the task of providing leadership and vision for the diocese and shall generally perform the functions of a diocesan bishop as delegated to her by the standing committee in its capacity as the ecclesiastical authority during the transition. She will work closely with the executive council as well. 

Jefferts Schori served as the presiding bishop of the Episcopal Church from 2006 until 2015. Prior to her role as primate, she was the bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Nevada.

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Presiding Bishop Curry's  invitation to the Good Book Club:  Gospel of Luke and the Acts of the Apostles
August 16, 2017

[Episcopal Church Office of Public Affairs]  Presiding Bishop Michael Curry has offered an invitation to Episcopalians and all Christians to join the more than 25 partners presenting the Good Book Club, an opportunity for reflection and prayer.

The Good Book Club is a churchwide program that invites the reading of the Gospel of Luke and the Acts of the Apostles during the liturgical seasons of Lent and Easter 2018.  Led by Forward Movement, the Good Book Club readings begin the Sunday prior to Ash Wednesday (February 11, 2018), and finish on Pentecost (May 20, 2018).

The Good Book Club, the Presiding Bishop said, provides an opportunity to "read, mark, learn and inwardly digest the Holy Scriptures."  He noted that "The Gospel of Luke tells the story of Jesus" while "the Acts of the Apostles tells the story of those who followed in the footsteps of Jesus."

He concludes, "I hope you'll join me."

The video is available here in English and with Spanish subtitles here.

Resources
Resources for the Good Book Club are available here including daily readings.
Spanish resources and information are available here.
Stay up-to-date by following The Good Book Club on Facebook here.

                                                    
Resources

Reimagining Leadership in Small and Rural Churches
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from Episcopal Church Foundation Vital Practices by Kelsey Schuster, Susan Daughtry and Karen Olson

"In the Episcopal Church in Minnesota (ECMN), we're seeking to change the narrative on leadership by living into the ministry of all the baptized.

"For us, that means welcoming a sense of holy creativity and communal discernment to the process of choosing a ministry model that fits for each faith community.
The first step in this process is communal discernment. This discernment is deeply rooted in uncovering the gifts and missional work of each faith community, and using holy listening to sit with the question of how God might be calling them collectively into action in their community.

"We rely on asset-mapping to help discover the gifts, resources, time and talent that God has given each individual and the faith community to steward. In the midst of that process is an opportunity to think creatively about how the life and work of the church needs to be pastored, and how that faith community will meet its needs for lay and ordained roles."

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Upcoming Events

September
4            Labor Day - HEC closed
5            Installation of Head Master, All Saint's School, Lubbock
6            Installation of Head Master, St. Andrew's School, Amarillo
8-9         NWT Deacon Retreat - Hyatt Place, Lubbock
17          Visitation, All Saints, Colorado City
20-26     House of Bishops, Alaska
29-31     School of Ordained Ministry,  St. Paul's, Lubbock

October
12-14     Diocesan Convention - Abilene, TX
16          HEC Closed
20-22     School of Ordained Ministry, St. Andrew's, Amarillo
22           Visitation, St. Stephen's, Lubbock
27-29     Fall Youth Event for grades 6th - 12th, St. Paul's, Lubbock
29          Visitation, Holy Trinity, Midland
31          Enriching Your Retirement Event (clergy), Emmanuel, San Angelo

November
2          Enriching Your Retirement Event (clergy), St. Stephen's, Lubbock

     
(Dates in purple italics indicate the Bishop's attendance.)
Episcopal Diocese of Northwest Texas  | 806.763.1370 | dnwtcomm@nwtdiocese.org 
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Elizabeth Thames
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Episcopal Diocese of Northwest Texas
(806) 763-1370