Episcopal Diocese of the Central Gulf Coast
September 9, 2020
Together, we are the body of Christ ~ transforming people from members into disciples, moving more deeply into God's call to life and ministry, and extending our mission beyond the status quo.
News
THE REV. MARY ALICE MATHISON
NEWLY APPOINTED MISSIONER FOR MOBILE

We are thrilled to announce the appointment of the Rev. Mary Alice Mathison as the new Missioner for Mobile, a position and ministry made possible by recent grants from The United Thank Offering of $50,000 and a New Episcopal Community Discernment Grant of $5,000. Read more about this new evangelism and missional engagement project in Bishop Russell's letter sent last week to Mobile area church leadership.

A NOTE FROM A PARISH NURSE
FLU SEASON IN THE MIDST OF A PANDEMIC

Authored by Donna Nolte, MSN, CCRN (St. Paul's, Daphne)

At this time of year, I always begin to look forward to fall. It brings so many things I love – cool weather, volleyball, fall softball, long sleeves and fires in the fire pit. I’m keenly aware that, in our current pandemic status, the start of fall this year will be significantly different from past years. But there is one thing that will be just the same as every other year - the start of Flu Season.  

As a person of faith, I know that every day we are reliant on God for our very existence. As a medical professional, I also acknowledge the blessings of science that God has given to us. To me, one of the places this is clearly illustrated is in the development of vaccines.  And this year, more than any other before, our acceptance of the blessing of vaccines is going to be critical... 

THE UNITED THANK OFFERING
RESPONDING TO COVID-19

Authored by Joyce Landers, UTO Vice President (St. Mark's, Troy)

The United Thank Offering Board has elected to postpone the upcoming 2021 grant focus of Act: Turn love into action by caring for God’s creation to protect the most vulnerable who will bear the largest burden of pollution and climate change. The new 2021 focus is: Recovering with love and gratitude: An Episcopal Response to the Covid-19 Pandemic in Local Contexts. The previous focus, centering on creation care, which be used in the 2022 granting cycle. 

The goal of the UTO Board is to help individual groups and congregations respond to the needs of their community created by COVID-19. As always, 100% of all ingathering funds will be issued in the form of grants to groups and congregations who are serving their communities out of gratitude. During difficult times like these, practicing gratitude is the best way to help reduce stress and maintain our relationships with each other and God. 

OPPORTUNITIES FOR ENGAGEMENT
BayLights Logo
SEPTEMBER 25 - 27
BAYLIGHTS AT BECKWITH


BayLights is the annual diocesan homecoming weekend and fundraising event celebrated at Beckwith Camp and Retreat Center. Due to the coronavirus pandemic, BayLights weekend has been reprogrammed as a Getaway by the Bay for adults and families. There will be no live entertainment Friday night, nor a Diocesan Ultreya or Rock Bottom on Saturday. However, it's still an opportunity for a fun-filled weekend with your friends and family in God's front yard!
Weekend Events

Friday Night
Dinner, campfire and smores

Saturday
Activities all day, BBQ lunch, football shown in Wilson Hall, live ticket draw down (live on Facebook), a silent auction and low country boil

Live Ticket Draw Down

The last 25 tickets will be pulled live on Facebook. Draw Down ticket winner is the last ticket drawn.

The prize is 1 week in Tuscany, Italy or Antigua for 2 or 4 people or $2,500. Do not have to be present to win. Trips do not expire.

We will be practicing and encouraging social distancing for the health and safety of all. There will be practices and procedures implemented in order to be in compliance with CDC and ACA guidelines. We hope you will embrace a willingness for change and adaptability as we learn a new way together.  
A 540 MILE VIRTUAL MISSION AROUND THE DIOCESE
THE JUBILEE WAY

Join us on a virtual trip around the Episcopal Diocese of the Central Gulf Coast! Engage your mind, soul and body, and learn about our diocese and our beloved Camp Beckwith. Our mission takes us about 540 miles from Beckwith and back, highlighting each of our 62 churches along the way.

The cost is $50 per person 21 and over. Cost includes race registration, access to website/app, a great t-shirt designed to celebrate our 50th Jubilee with all parish/mission names included, virtual postcards telling about each parish/mission, and a donation to Camp Beckwith.

The mission runs from BayLights through Convention. Registration is open now through September 25. Mission begins September 25.


Around the Diocese
Have a photo from your church (ministry, program, staff member, service, "behind the scenes," etc.) you would like to see highlighted in our newsletter? Send it to us!
Announcements
IN CASE YOU MISSED IT

Bishop Russell's Reflection and Invitation to Discipleship Day. Watch the video HERE.

Announcement regarding December events for 50th Jubilee Celebration with Presiding Bishop Michael Curry and Bryan Stevenson. Read the announcement HERE.
Please be sure to direct any mail for the Episcopal Diocese of the Central Gulf Coast to our post office address: PO Box 13330, Pensacola, FL 32591-3330.
From The Episcopal Church
RESOURCES FOR CREATING AN INTENTIONAL SMALL GROUP MINISTRY
BUILDING INTENTIONAL SMALL GROUPS

Small groups are a wonderful way to invite those outside your church walls, those new to your congregation, and existing members into deeper community. Small groups are low-risk, high-impact opportunities to seek, name, and celebrate what Jesus is doing in our lives and the lives around us, and they provide many opportunities to invite visitors and each other to go deeper into that practice at the feet of Jesus. The community we create within these groups can support and deepen each other’s commitments to live a Jesus-shaped life at home, at work, at play, and in the world. Consider using the resources offered by The Episcopal Church to begin, rejuvenate, or inspire your own small group ministry.

A GUIDE TO EFFECTIVE ADVOCACY FOR EPISCOPALIANS
FAITH AND CITIZESHIP

An updated version of Episcopal Public Policy Network's Faith and Citizenship Guide for Advocacy is now available. This resource seeks to help you fulfill your baptismal covenant to strive for justice and peace. While it is focused on the federal level, the advocacy tips and tactics we recommend throughout the guide are applicable to state and local advocacy as well. Use this for your personal development or take on advocacy strategies in your congregation with more confidence.

MORE RESOURCES FROM THE EPISCOPAL CHURCH
Diocesan Resources
Hurricane Season Emergency Preparedness
It is important that we ready ourselves for potential storms, and remain prepared throughout the season. Careful delegation of roles and responsibilities and having a plan in place are key components to a congregation's vitality and ability to meet the physical and spiritual needs of the church, parishioners and surrounding community.

Online and Live Streamed Worship Options
Livestreamed services are being offered by churches across our diocese and beyond.

Visit the Episcopal Asset Map to see the options across the nation.

Visit the list of churches in the Episcopal Diocese of the Central Gulf Coast.
Online Giving for Your Congregation
Your financial gifts to your church are of vital importance to support their ongoing ministries to your church community and to the most vulnerable among us. The Episcopal Diocese of the Central Gulf Coast is providing the ability to give online for congregations that do not have ways to collect an offering or donation electronically.

Diocesan Events [see more dates]
All Diocesan in-person events have been suspended at this time. If you are a member of a commission or committee please check with your chair regarding online meeting options.
WORKSHOP
Saturday, September 19, 9:30am to 2:30pm CDT | Discipleship Day Online
Marked as Christ's Own Forever: A Celebration of Living Baptized in Today's World with Dr. Lisa Kimball of Virginia Theological Seminary.

Discipleship Day will be a time to virtually gather as a whole diocese to investigate ways in which we might become more confident about our calling as the baptized faithful in this fast-changing world.

Church & Community Events
All Saints, Redeemer and St. John’s Episcopal Churches in Mobile are founding members of Gulf Coast Creation Care, an interfaith group whose mission is to focus the Gulf Coast community's moral attention on the climate crisis and to mobilize all people toward bold and just action. There are two remaining webinars being offered in September by the group to celebrate the Season of Creation, including:

  • September 20 – Creation Care from Varying Faith Perspectives – interfaith panel discussion with local faith leaders, moderated by the Rev. Bob Donnell of All Saints. Panelists will include the Rev. Ellen Sims, Imam Kamal Saleem, Ms. Candice Dunston, Dr. Stephen Wilson, and Mr. Glen Mutchnick.
  • September 27 – We Need Courage – Not Hope – to Fight Climate Change, with Anna Jane Joyner, a local environmental activist of national renown, and the Rev. Michael Malcom, executive director of Alabama Interfaith Power and Light.

Download the flyer HERE. Visit the GCCC website to sign up for all three webinars: https://gulfcoastcreationcare.org/upcoming-events

Contact Lella Lowe at (251) 455-5073 or email info@gulfcoastcreationcare.org to learn more about getting your congregation involved with Gulf Coast Creation Care.

Hosting a church related event that is open to everyone? Submit it below to be considered for publication.
Bishop Russell's Upcoming Visitations
September 13
St. Luke's, Marianna

September 20
AM - St. John's, Monroeville
PM - St. Peter's, Jackson

September 27
Christ Church, Pensacola
Cycle of Prayer [see more dates]
September 13
St. Cyprian's, Pensacola

September 20
St. John's, Monroeville
St. Peter's, Jackson

September 13
Covington County Jail, Andalusia

September 20
Coffee County Jail County Complex, New Brockton
50th Jubilee Celebration
50TH JUBILEE CELEBRATION
All are invited to participate with us in our 50th Jubilee Anniversary. We've created monthly materials, resources, newsletters, etc. to help us celebrate in a unified way across the Episcopal Diocese of the Central Gulf Coast throughout 2020.



Coastline is a biweekly publication of the Episcopal Diocese of the Central Gulf Coast.

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Direct questions to communications@diocgc.org