July 28, 2020
Action alert on voting rights and guns in schools
Action alert
Call to action: Ohio Senate Committee debating bills on voter rights and gun safety, probably week of Aug. 3
Three important bills   affecting voting rights and gun safety  – both priority issues for the Episcopal Church – are all being debated by the Ohio Senate’s Government Oversight and Reform Committee, which is likely to hold hearings the week of August 3 .  This alert gives you an overview of the bills, advocacy points for you to consider, and information on how to contact your Senator and the members of the committee.
Voting rights: HB 680 and SB 191  both affect absentee voting, which is crucial this year because of the pandemic. The advocacy points we’re asking you to consider are designed to remove financial and logistical barriers, making absentee voting more accessible to poor people and citizens who are elderly or most vulnerable to COVID-19.
HB 680  moves the deadline for requesting absentee ballots from three days to a week before the election.  It forbids the Secretary of State from pre-paying postage for ballots or absentee ballot requests.
SB 191  authorizes a secure, online application process for absentee ballots.  
Guns in Schools:   Current Ohio law, R.C. 109.78, requires that anyone carrying a gun in an Ohio school must have at least 20 years active duty as a peace officer or having completed approved basic peace officer training, which is over 700 hours.  SB 317  allows school districts to authorize employees to be armed on school grounds without any training in firearms. 
Analysis, recommended talking points, and Senate contacts for all three bills are available here . In each case, we provide a link to the bill analysis prepared by the non-partisan Ohio Legislative Service Commission.
Solar team to speak at sustainability summit

Two members of our diocesan Solar Team will speak at the Midwest Regional Sustainability Summit on August 6. The Rev. Craig Foster and Ken Wright will describe the Solarize Ohio project to place solar panels on churches throughout the diocese.

Read more
Free resources and free shipping from Church Publishing
Church Publishing is still offering  free prayer and music resources and activities for kids,  as well as free standard shipping on book orders over $35 with code  FREESHIP .*

Learn more at the Church Publishing free resources page
Racial justice and the work of Lillian Smith
A Lillian Smith Reader
Lillian WHO? you might ask. Hers is not a household name, but should be. Lillian Smith reflected on her own white privilege in the Jim Crow South, deplored what she saw, and set out to change herself and the world. If you have ever wondered what you can do to address racial injustice directly, our next summer book club offering,  A Lillian Smith Reader , edited by Margaret Rose Gladney and Lisa Hodgens, is a MUST READ.  

As a writer and forward-thinking social critic, Lillian Smith (1897–1966) was an astute chronicler of the twentieth-century American South and an early proponent of the civil rights movement. From her home on Old Screamer Mountain overlooking Clayton, Georgia, Smith wrote and spoke openly against racism, segregation, and Jim Crow laws long before the civil rights era. Bringing together short stories, lectures, essays, op-ed pieces, interviews, and excerpts from her longer fiction and nonfiction,  A Lillian Smith Reader  offers the first comprehensive collection of her work and a compelling introduction to one of the South’s most important writers. Her most well-known works are  Killers of the Dream and  Strange Fruit

Join the discussion! Cathedral Canon Paul Williams and Diocesan Canon Lee Anne Reat will facilitate the discussion tomorrow, Wednesday, July 29 at 7 p.m. Register at  https://dsoepiscopal.org/online-book-club/
Breaking the Silence
Documentary available through August 6

A documentary on Lillian Smith’s life,  Breaking the Silence,  is now available for free viewing to our diocese until August 6. Go to  https://lilliansmithdoc.com/private-screening-diocese .
Event cancelled

Unfortunately, the August 5 discussion of Breaking the Silence and the life and work of Lillian Smith with director Hal Jacobs has been cancelled.
Dismantling Racism - free Zoom training August 29
One way that the Diocese of Southern Ohio addresses the racism within us and around us is through anti-racism training, called Dismantling Racism. The training is required of diocesan leaders, including members of commissions and committees, church staff, and vestry members. 

Training is a two step process:
  1. Before registering for the workshop, view one of the videos in the Racial Justice section on the DSO Learning Site https://dsolearning.org/courses-list/#racialjustice. You will be asked for feedback on the video on your registration form.
  2. Register for the next Zoom training on Saturday, August 29. You will be sent a link to the training after you have registered.

There is no cost for the Zoom training. Questions? Contact Canon Lee Anne Reat at  lareat@diosohio.org  or Debby Stokes-Wayne at  dstokes1@live.com.
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In Stories, Ariel Miller shares how a diocesan grant earmarked for ecological stoves to help to reduce asthma in an impoverished community in Madagascar is also making a difference in that country's fight against COVID-19.

What's your pandemic story? Share it in our Stories section at EpiscopaliansInConnection.org
Diocesan grant saving lives in Madagascar

A $5,200 diocesan SDG grant awarded to Ascension and Holy Trinity, Wyoming, helps prevent lung disease and COVID-19 in an impoverished community.

Read more
Virtual retreat from Transfiguration Spirituality Center
Click the image at left to download this flyer.

Please join us on Saturday, August 15 from 9 am to 12 noon for a retreat over Zoom: Encountering God in the Sacrament of Life . Sr. Mary Ann Humbert from the Sisters of Charity will be our retreat leader. Cost is $25, but if you would like to participate and cost is an issue, just let us know when you register. Registration is open until August 14.
Nominations for diocesan-wide offices now accepted
Becoming Beloved Community
Dismantling Racism with picture books
What does it mean to be undefeated as we live in a racial divide? Join Ms. Miriam, Nia, Kaia and Jaiya McKenney, with help from friends on Facebook, for a reading and robust conversation of The Undefeated, the Caldecott Award winner, Coretta Scott King winner, and Newberry Honor book by Kwame Alexander and Kadir Nelson. Who do you recognize? About who and what can you learn more?
Follow the latest news and events related to The Episcopal Church's work on Becoming Beloved Community here in our diocese at http://dsobeloved.org.

Click here to subscribe to the Becoming Beloved Community newsletter
Connecting with our cathedral
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Want to stay up to date with everything that is happening at Christ Church Cathedral? Check out the Weekly GPS , an e-newsletter sent out every Friday that includes all the upcoming (virtual) offerings at the cathedral.
Connecting with The Episcopal Church
The Episcopal Church invites all clergy to ‘Be a Part of the Picture’ as it seeks to Become Beloved Community
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Be a part of the Picture
Efforts Will Help the Church Better Understand the Diverse Experiences of Clergy

The Episcopal Church  and the  Church Pension Group  (CPG) announced that the Recorder of Ordinations will begin to collect data on race, ethnicity, gender identity, and sexual orientation from all clergy. The data will be used to assist the Church in understanding how different groups are treated in terms of deployment and compensation, as well as in Episcopal elections. Responding to resolutions passed by the 79th General Convention, CPG updated various technology systems so it could collect the requested demographic information that it did not collect previously. The newly requested data will only be used for analysis and reported in aggregate form. The data will not be published or used to administer benefits and will not be printed in the Episcopal Clerical Directory. Individual clergy can visit  cpg.org/picture  to update their profile and to learn more.

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Follow the latest news of The Episcopal Church at Episcopal News Service: https://www.episcopalnewsservice.org
Connecting with job opportunities
Bethany School
St. Andrew's, Pickerington
See all job opportunities at https://episcopaliansinconnection.org/job-opportunities/. Need a job posted? Send your information to communication@diosohio.org .