December 9, 2016

Serving the Episcopal Diocese of Pennsylvania
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2016 December Slideshow from Christ Church, Philadelphia

Photos from the 2016 Clergy Conference at Cape May, NJ

This year's clergy conference was held in Cape May, NJ. and was attended by approximately 180 people including clergy, spouses, and children.
Held at the Grand Hotel in Cape May, NJ, the theme of this year's conference was:  "Invite-Welcome-Connect: Developing an Effective Newcomer Ministry".
Keynote speaker  Mary Parmer  helped numerous communities of faith become more welcoming. Specifically designed with  clergy , vestries, staff, and congregational leadership in mind, "Invite-Welcome-Connect" offered concrete steps toward developing an effective newcomer ministry. At this year's  clergy conference , participants reflected on the current culture of welcome in their communities and developed specific strategies for implementing an effective newcomer ministry.

To see more photos from this year's conference please go to:

Photos by Henry Carnes

Godmother to Graduating Deacons in Formation in Haiti

by Archdeacon Pam Nesbit

On November 8th , 21 students in formation for the diaconate graduated from the Episcopal Seminary in Port au Prince, Haiti.   It is the custom of student cohorts in Haiti to ask teachers or advisors to be Godmother and Godfather of the class.   Because I visited Haiti in 2015, as the students were finishing their first year of study, and was able to bring them the perspective and good wishes of the Episcopal deacons in the United States, they asked me to be their Godmother.   As such I was invited to attend the graduation ceremony at the seminary and to speak briefly to the students.   I put together my remarks and decided it would honor the students if I could possibly speak to them in Haitian Creole.   When I preached for them in 2015, I spoke English and a student translated.   I hoped to be able to speak directly to them this time around.

Deacon Holly Hartmann of the Diocese of Massachusetts, who was also able to attend the graduation, has been to Haiti many times and has studied Haitian Creole.   She kindly translated my remarks and I did my best to pronounce her translation correctly.   But it was Ms. Gibi Garnier, a parishioner at the Philadelphia Cathedral, who is from Haiti, who was most able to help me communicate.   She went over the talk with me several times helping me make sense of this language, which is the language of the people in Haiti.   It is based on French, which is the formal language of Haiti, and the language used most often at the graduation ceremony. 
When I arrived at the ceremony, I met my counterpart, Père Vil Jean Mardoche, a priest who is the Godfather of the class.   We were asked to help hand out the graduation certificates to the students, and then we were asked to speak.   I was able to make myself understood and I think the students appreciated the effort.   One student came to me at the end of the ceremony to tell me I speak Haitian very well.   If he only knew!  
These students will be ordained in the next few months.   They are from all over Haiti, some from the city of Port au Prince, some from the distant parishes.   There are 80,000 Episcopalians in Haiti, a country that has suffered from political turmoil and natural disasters.   The capital of Port au Prince is still not completely recovered from the 2010 earthquake.   The Episcopal Cathedral was badly damaged and the Diocese is using a kind of Quonset hut for diocesan ceremonies such as the graduation.   There are hopes and plans to repair the original cathedral.  Late last September, Hurricane Matthew slammed into the southern peninsula of Haiti reducing churches, hospital and homes to rubble.   After my counterpart Father Vil and I both spoke to the students, one of them spoke in response to our words on behalf of the graduating class.   At one point he began to speak to me directly in English.   He thanked me for sharing the understandings of diakonia and the ministries of the Episcopal deacons in the United States.   He said that he had heard me when I said that deacons are to respond in Christ's name to the pain and suffering around them.   He said that in Haiti there is a great deal of pain and suffering, and so the ministries of these new graduates would be "very complicated."   Indeed.   I ask your prayers and help for the people of Haiti and for these courageous new deacons who have worked hard to become diaconal ministers doing Christ's work in this beautiful and wounded land. 

Father Vil, Godfather of the class, speaking to the graduating class of deacons in the Diocese of Haiti



Bishop Gutierrez's Pilgrimage to St. Paul's, Elkins Park

Jan Wier, Member of St. Peter's Church Phoenixville
Director of Godly Play and Vestry Liaison to Children and Youth Ministries.

Gladwyne Gives Blanket Drive

The 2 nd annual Gladwyne Gives Blanket Drive is underway! Now that the cold weather is upon us, there is a critical need locally for donations of new (or gently used and laundered) blankets or sleeping bags. The blankets will be sorted and delivered to St. Mary's Church in Chester - and Church of the Advocate in North Philadelphia - , two institutions providing hands on care for poor adults and children every single day. An astounding 200 blankets were collected during our inaugural drive! We hope to exceed that number through a blanket for blanket matching program made possible by a generous friend of Gladwyne Gives.
There are several ways to donate. Feel free to drop off blankets at St. Christopher's Church, 226 Righters Mill Road, Gladwyne, PA 19035 - 610-642-6920 - If you would like to make a monetary donation, please mail or hand deliver to the Church a check payable to "St. Christophers Church". Please write on the check and/or the envelope "Gladwyne Gives Blanket Drive" and blankets will be purchased with the collected funds. We hope to be able to accept online donations in the future. In the meantime, NorthEast Fleece, a Massachusetts based blanket manufacturer, has a charitable program called "Fleece for Peace" . Blankets can be purchased online at a 25% discount and shipped for free directly to St. Christopher's.
We will be collecting donations from now thru December 31st, so we can get the blankets to those who need them as soon as possible. Please email questions to
Thanks for supporting Gladwyne Gives!

A collaboration among local individuals and organizations created to provide outreach and volunteer opportunities to make life better for those in need.

From the Toolkit of the Episcopal Church Office of Public Affairs


Episcopal Church Presiding Bishop and Primate Michael Curry joined the leaders of the Anglican Church of Canada, the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada, and the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America in preparing Advent Devotions for the upcoming liturgical season. Titled "Liberated by God's Grace" and available here .
* The Episcopal Church is offering resources focusing on Make Ready The Feast. Daily from Advent 1 through Christmas Day Make Ready The Feast, available here will highlight one scripture citation and one recipe with background information on Facebook, Twitter, blogs, and the Episcopal Church website.  Videos will also be offered here.

* Evangelism Initiatives, available here, provides an array of evangelism and welcoming resources for Episcopalians, from a Hospitality Audit to Neighborhood Prayer Walking kits; quick links to parish marketing tools and community organizing tips; plus links to websites, books and articles.
* Videos of Presiding Bishop Michael Curry, workshops and plenary sessions from the November conference Evangelism Matters , along with handouts and additional resources, are available on-demand at no charge here and here. 

DIOPA Resource Guide

  The DIOPA Resource Guide is here!
We have heard your suggestions, compiled them, and we would like to present the DIOPA Resource Guide: a directory of information about the Diocese of Pennsylvania, and how we can best serve you. We encourage you to explore the website at
This website is designed to continue to capture information that is useful and relevant to all members of the Diocese. Please continue to submit your suggestions. Contact J.D. Lafrance at or use our online form:

Download our Diocesan Mobile App "DIOPAConnect"

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

As part of my promise to better serve you, I am pleased to offer a major initiative from the Offices of the Episcopal Diocese of Pennsylvania. This mobile directory app will help us all to feel connected, provides useful information about parishes, and enables us to have one more important way to stay informed about everything going on in our wonderful Diocese. We are here to help and to serve you, and this mobile app is an important step in showing the kind of innovation and emphasis that is placed on equipping our congregations to build the Kingdom of God.

The Rt. Rev. Daniel G.P. Gutierrez
XVI Bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Pennsylvania

To download the mobile application go to the "App Store" icon on your iPhones 
or the "Google Play" icon on your Android Phone  and 
search for "DIOPA" or "DIOPA mobile directory."

Let us know how DiopaConnect works for you. 
 User feedback helps us to tailor our applications to better meet your needs.

Gifts of Stock

As we approach the end of the year, you might want to think about making a gift of stock to the Diocese of Pennsylvania, The Church Foundation or any of the parishes, schools and other institutions within the Diocese.

The Church Foundation is equipped to help facilitate your charitable giving. The process is easy, and offers benefits to both the donor and the recipient.

Visit The Church Foundation website or contact Lori Daniels at 215-220-9886 or Alan Lindsay at 215-621-8310 for more information.

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