Aloha my Siblings in Christ Jesus,
With the reality of the Coronavirus (COVID-19), we are reminded that we live in a small and highly interconnected world. What happens on the other side of the world does impact us here in the Islands. The same is true for incidences of injustice and oppression. Wherever one child or elder suffers, we all suffer and are responsible. When words of hate or fear drip from our lips, we participate in the destruction of humanity. Our daily choices contribute to the degradation of creation itself. The Presiding Bishop is calling us to a Lent of prayer, fasting and repentance to strengthen us as the disciples of Jesus Christ in our wayward world.
I will heed the Presiding Bishop’s call to take up intentional daily prayer and weekly fast days. I am taking on a personal study of the First Letter of Peter. The Archbishop of Canterbury has asked the bishops attending this Summer’s Lambeth Conference to study 1 Peter (see
Lambeth: A Biblical Focus on 1 Peter
). I have decided to use Lent as a period of serious study in preparation for this important gathering of Episcopal/Anglican bishops from throughout the world.
I am also taking up a special time of prayer specifically for the parochial clergy and the congregations’ wardens this Lent. I certainly pray for all of the clergy and lay leaders of our Diocese on a daily basis. I am keenly aware, however, that the leaders of our congregations face pressing challenges in the 21
century. We are called to take up the challenges in our local communities. The local clergy and lay leaders are the primary teachers of the Gospel in our congregations and evangelists in our neighborhoods.
I pray that everyone in the Diocese has a holy Lent as we prepare for Holy Week and the joy of Easter.
“No ia mea, e nā hoahānau, e kūpaʻa ʻoukou, me ka nāueue ʻole, me ka hoʻomau i kā ʻoukou hana nui ʻana i ka hana a ka Haku, no ka mea, ua ʻike nō ʻoukou, ʻaʻole i make hewa kā ʻoukou hana ʻana ma ka Haku.” Korineto I 15.58
“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.” 1 Corinthians 15:58
Aloha ma o Iesu Kristo, ko mākou Haku,
The Right Rev. Robert L. Fitzpatrick
The Episcopal Diocese of Hawaiʻi
The Episcopal Church in Micronesia