September 1, 2020
Updated FAQs
You have questions, and we try to have answers – even in this uncertain time of pandemic. An updated FAQ document regarding return to increasing in-person parish life is now available on the home page and the COVID-19 resource page on the diocesan website. New topics of concern include outdoor and indoor gatherings, resuming celebration of the eucharist and refining definitions of facial coverings.

Episcopal 'Your Vote Counts' PSAs available
Your Vote Counts
This week we share the first of a series of social media posts that Ohio churches and non-profits can use to help make sure every eligible voter in their community is registered and knows the options for voting safely during the pandemic. The non-partisan PSAs include a reflection on civic duty by Presiding Bishop Michael Curry and a series of tips starting with the September to-do list attached this week: how to verify your registration, and tips for making a voting plan.
Advocacy guide available
The Episcopal Public Policy Network offers an excellent guide for citizen advocacy based on our Baptismal Covenant. Faith and Citizenship: A Guide to Effective Advocacy for Episcopalians is available in English and Spanish at The guide offers simple to follow suggestions for becoming involved at a number of different levels in the process of building public policy that reflects our values as Christians and Episcopalians. This is a powerful tool for adult formation in this election season and beyond.
Anti-Racism Prayer Vigil

Join with your Bexley and Columbus neighbors of all ages for a Prayer Vigil centered on learning, praying and acting to dismantle racism! Saturday, September 12, 7:15 a.m. to 7:45 p.m.

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Harmony for Habitat

St. Barnabas Episcopal Church presents an afternoon of music to benefit Habitat for Humanity Greater Cincinnati. The free, virtual concert will feature principals from the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra in a program curated by Michael Chertock.

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Seasonal reminders for property management
It’s hard to believe that fall is approaching. Here are some tips on seasonal things you can do to prepare your church property for winter from our operations executive Carine deLange and facilities director, Matt Hornsby:

  • Review mandated inspections and ensuring everything is up-to-date, such as, boiler inspections, elevator inspections, fire alarm inspections, and definitely back-flow inspections.
  • It's a good time of year to check batteries in fire panels, emergency lighting, and exit signage. Beware, service for batteries can be expensive if completed by a vendor. For example, two deficient batteries were recently found at the cathedral and our Fire System vendor quoted over $300 to change the two batteries that I found I can purchase direct for $17 each and install in-house.
  • Church Insurance offers this reminder for three tasks that you should make a priority at this time of year; HVAC servicing, fire sprinkler care and debris cleaning Read more
Food for the Soul
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Preaching resources for liturgical Christians
The Living Word logo
The Living Word is a new email newsletter from the editors of the Living Church especially for preachers, teachers, and anyone seeking to read, mark, learn, and inwardly digest the Sunday lectionary readings.

Published on Mondays, every issue of The Living Word includes a long-form reflection on the week’s readings, excerpts from classic texts, a relevant sermon, and helpful articles from the archives of the Living Church.

Sign up today for this free email newsletter and you’ll receive a weekly curated collection of ecumenical resources, aligned with the rhythms of the Church year and grounded in our liturgical and spiritual heritage.
Volunteer tutors needed
Cincinnati Students with limited English will have real difficulty with distance learning over the next month. Can you volunteer half-day a week to assist them?

Transformations CDC is hosting “Drop In” hours for elementary students in the morning, older students with “interrupted education” in the afternoon. We will maintain safe distancing policies and COVID-19 cleaning procedures, anyone entering will have temp check, etc. All volunteers must complete Safe Church training or show proof of completion. 

Curious?  Want to help? Contact Nancy Sullivan of Transformations CDC at 859.240.6140.
Today in Stories, the Rev. Anne Reed tells how Habitat for Humanity volunteers through the Cincinnati HOPE Coalition have adapted to keep serving during the time of COVID.

What's your pandemic story? Share it in our Stories section at
HOPE in the midst of a pandemic
So much of daily life has been put on ‘hold’ during the COVID-19 crisis. Even those who were looking forward to taking possession of a new home through Habitat for Humanity found their dreams deferred for a time because building had to cease. Volunteers who spent their free Saturdays working on rehabilitating old houses or building new ones alongside prospective Habitat homebuyers were sidelined by the pandemic. In the midst of it all, the Habitat for Humanity of Greater Cincinnati affiliate has stayed connected with expectant homeowners and coalition volunteers, so that when the building could resume, we could all come together to finish and dedicate new homes for families.
Countdown to convention
Videos needed for virtual convention
Calling all Stephen Spielberg wannabes: The communications department is calling for videos from all congregations to air during our annual convention.

Since we will be unable to gather or see each other during our virtual convention on November 7, every congregation is challenged to send in your best shout-out to the diocese in the form of a short video. (Remember the Easter greetings?) More information about the videos will be coming soon, but start planning yours today!
Becoming Beloved Community
Emergent Discipleship
As a follow up the recent Emerging Church series and in response to expressed longing for more communal time and space to deepen our spiritual practices, the Diocese of Southern Ohio’s Becoming Beloved Community is inviting you to Emerging Discipleship.

This four-part series begins 9/8 and continues every Tuesday from 6-8pm through 9/29.

Sign up now; space is limited.
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Follow the latest news and events related to The Episcopal Church's work on Becoming Beloved Community here in our diocese at

Click here to subscribe to the Becoming Beloved Community newsletter
Connecting with our cathedral
Music Live@Lunch

Music Live@Lunch, Christ Church Cathedral's weekly concert series, will feature the performers listed below in September*. These free concerts are presented on Tuesdays at 12:10 p.m. Patrons may bring their own lunch.

September 8: Krista Cornish Scott (soprano) with guest musicians:
Hildegard von Bingen―Ancient and Modern
September 15: Alan Rafferty (cello), Sarah Kim (cello)
September 22: Jenny Hu (Chinese zither)
September 29: James Meade (guitar)
Fisk Opus 148 organ
Organ Recital

Ugo Sforza will perform at Christ Church Cathedral on Sunday, September 20, at 4 p.m.*

Organist Ugo Sforza performs a program of music by Italian and Italian-inspired composers on C.B. Fisk Opus 148 in Centennial Chapel. 

No admission charge.
*In Response to COVID-19
All programming is subject to change due to pandemic-related restrictions. Whenever possible, we will offer services and concerts via live stream if in-person gatherings are not permitted. Please check the cathedral website ( for updates throughout the season.
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Christ Church Cathedral is located at 318 E 4th Street in downtown Cincinnati. For more information, news and events, visit
Connecting with The Episcopal Church
Responding to Storms in the Gulf Coast

Episcopal Relief & Development's US Disaster Program continues to support Episcopal dioceses in the Gulf Coast, providing technical support as they prepare for and respond to Hurricane Laura.

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Wildfires in Northern California

Episcopal Relief & Development's US Disaster Program is coordinating with all of the Episcopal dioceses in California as they monitor the impact of the northern California wildfires and develop response plans to provide assistance to communities.

Read more
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Follow the latest news of The Episcopal Church at Episcopal News Service:
Repeat announcements
Benefits news for church employees/retirees
The open enrollment period for the employer option for disability insurance for plan year 2021 will be August 26 to October 7, 2020.
If your church made a selection in 2020 and is happy with that selection, you do not need to do anything - your selection will roll over automatically for plan year 2021. If your church made no choice or declined to offer employer provided disability, the church can during open enrollment select to provide employer provided disability, or the employer can elect to allow disability to be paid self-pay by the employee. The enrollment period once the selection is made by the employer to enroll any employees for disability will be October 12 to November 18, 2020 with disability coverage to be effective January 1, 2021.

Open enrollment for health and dental benefits for active employees for plan year 2021 will be held October 12 to October 30, 2020. Retirees open enrollment (supplemental) will be held Oct. 15 until December 7, 2020.

New for active employees in 2021: Hearing Aid benefits will be included in all health insurance plans offered in 2021.

Any questions regarding benefits should be directed to our benefits coordinator, Angela Byrd at 800.582.1712 ext. 127, 513.632.6022 or
Clergy Respite days
Clergy are reminded to take advantage of the Clergy Respite Days at the Procter Center in September offered to you and your spouse by the bishop. More information and registration can be found here.

Please note: the Sept. 21-22 and Sept. 30 - Oct. 1 dates have been cancelled. Other dates are still open and accepting registrations until Sept. 4.
There's No Right Way to Grieve
retreat graphic
Free virtual retreat from Transfiguration Spirituality Center
Monday, September 14 & 21
1 to 2:30 p.m. on Zoom
The Edge House is cool and so are you

Check out this cool new promotional video for The Edge House, the campus ministry serving the University of Cincinnati, Cincinnati State College, and other area colleges and universities.
Job opportunities
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Grace Church, College Hill
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