News for the week of March 2, 2021
A Reflection on Black History Month
From The Rev. Br. Simeon (Lewis) Powell, CG  

Black History was celebrated (tolerated) for one week when I was a younger person. It had to compete with Boy Scout’s Week, and the birthday celebrations of Presidents George Washington and Abraham Lincoln. Now it is remembered for a month, although during the shortest month of the year. I would like to see the histories of all peoples be more fully included in our daily lives.

I recall that Black (Negro) History was not in the curriculum of many schools in the South. It was tolerated in the curricula of schools that were segregated by the tone of one’s skin. I grew up in one of those schools. That was a blessing because I got to learn quite a bit about the events of history that were left out of the sanctioned textbooks of my time. I preached a sermon last year where I shared that “I had a brief and brilliant acting career” when I was casted as Crispus Attucks in the seventh grade. I say brief because I was killed early in the play just as Crispus Attucks was in real life during the Revolutionary War. My role in that play has served as a touch stone in my life. It taught me to be willing to give all for what is right.

There have been many strides forward since my brief “acting days”. More of the population is learning about the contributions to our collective cultures by Black, Red, and Brown people. These contributions are being recognized in science, religion, sports, economics, entertainment, and politics. I feel that this is good. Our Christian tradition reminds us that “No one lights a lamp and puts it under a basket”. Black History is that lamp that has been lit and now, is giving light to the entire world. Getting to know our neighbors better is a major step toward Becoming the Beloved Community of God.  
Ash Wednesday in Napa Valley
The three Episcopal churches of Napa Valley--Grace St. Helena, St. Mary's Napa, and St. Luke's Calistoga--joined together to celebrate a shared service for Ash Wednesday, February 17, 2021. The service had incredible imagery, music, and prayer all on a streaming service. You may view the recording of this special service here.
From the National Cathedral
Grab your Lent & Easter Season Pass, and the National Cathedral will send each worship service, concert and online offering directly to your inbox. Events are webcast live, but you can join at a time that’s convenient for youLearn more here
Grant Opportunities
Episcopal Community Services of Northern California launches the annual 2021-2022 grant cycle. ECS Northern California will be administering five innovative outreach grants this year:

  • The Ministry Development Grant (1 year) focuses on human rights advocacy, human service or health programs or lay leadership/empowerment.
  • The Warren Dunning Memorial Social Justice Grant (up to 3 years) focuses serving to the least and/or the lonely.
  • The Barry L. Beisner Grant (up to 5 years) focuses on human rights advocacy, human service or health programs and lay, leadership/empowerment programs.
  • The Lamb Grant focuses supporting youth/young adults in providing social and health ministries projects within and outside the Diocese of Northern California.
  • The Anita Weaver Grant (up to 2 years) is to help persons, 50 years or older, to move from homelessness to supportive housing, and with a plan that leads to long-term solutions. 

Letters of Interest due April 15, 2021, Requests for Proposals June 1, 2021

To find out more about these grants visit the NorCal ECS website.
The Task Force on Creation Care and Environmental Racism seeks to support and expand The Episcopal Church’s loving, liberating, life-giving relationship with God, with each other and with Creation. At The Episcopal Church’s General Convention in 2018, the convening body allocated funds to support local and regional eco-ministry efforts through grant awards ranging from $15,000 to $40,000.  

Grant proposals must have an impact beyond the applicant organization/parish and include at least one partner in accomplishing the granted project.

The deadline to submit proposals is March 26th, 2021. Questions can be directed to Phoebe Chatfield Associate for Creation Care and Justice. 
Lenten Resources
From Trinity Cathedral:
The Dean’s Forum at Trinity Cathedral, Sacramento
“Use Your Words”
The Very Rev. Matthew Woodward
Dean of the Cathedral
 
All are welcome to join the Dean's Forum on the first Sunday of each month (except for Easter Day on Apr 4) at the Cathedral. A speaker will be invited to join the cathedral who will preach at the 9:00 am service, and then give a talk on Zoom at 10:30 am, followed by a time for questions. The speakers are being invited to address the theme: Use Your Words! Words are powerful, in politics, in family life, in liturgy and in preaching. How do we use them? Do they build up? Or tear down? Join us for this series of conversations about the power of words and how we might use them.
 
March 7th: The Rev. Canon Mark Oakley, Dean of St John’s College, Cambridge University, and former Canon Chancellor of St Paul’s Cathedral, London will preach for us and then give a Forum presentation on the idea of poetry being the person of faith's native language. He will then take questions moderated by Dean Matthew. Canon Oakley is a writer and renowned preacher in the UK. He led the public conversations at St Paul’s Cathedral during his tenure there, and has much to offer as we consider how we may use our words as a Cathedral.

When: Sunday, March 7 - 10:30 am
Access: You must register in advance for this event | Click here to register
Contact: Randy Rodriguez - rrodriguez@trinitycathedral.org
RELIGION AND SCIENCE FORUM
Hosted by St. John's, Chico
 
Growing Spiritually in Scientific Age -
A Lenten Journey Together
Tuesday nights: March 2, 9, 16, 23 @ 7:00 P.M.

We live in a world defined by science and technology, and sometimes it’s hard to see how and where our faith fits. The amazing discovery is that science and technology can actually enhance our faith. On these four Tuesdays in Lent, Father Richard Yale, physicist Lou Buchholtz, physician Marcia Nelson, and writer and theologian Greg Cootsona will address key topics in faith and science—Christianity’s role in rise of modern science and the spirituality in the practice of science; why there is no “God of the gaps”; an interview with physician Marcie Nelson about COVID-19; and a view to how we approach key contemporary issues in Christian faith and science. Read more here.
Spring Conferences with EDNC Clergy
April 22 - 23, 2021
The Very Rev. Richard Yale, Rector at St. John's, Chico will be speaking at the Academy of Religious Leadership (ARL) for their annual conference this spring. The presentation will be New Directions in Parish Disaster Ministry: An Episcopal Congregation Responds to the Camp Fire.

For more information and to register, visit ARL
2021 Diocesan Convention - Save the Dates
2021 Convocations
October 9th, 2021
(Online)

2021 Diocesan Convention
November 5th - 6th, 2021
(Redding, CA)
Additional Resources and Links
In addition to the ongoing financial aid program the Fund for the Diaconate has been assisting deacons -- working, retired, or disabled -- who have insufficient funds for their needs. The Fund is unique in its mission of service to deacons by deacons. The Fund for the Diaconate of the Episcopal Church has created a special Emergency Grant Program, to aid deacons affected by the Covid-19 pandemic.

For more information visit the website here.
Project Resources - Spring 2021 Training

Six consecutive Sundays, April 18 to May 23
2:00 to 3:30 pm PT , via Zoom

Project Resource teaches culture and systems change around financial development in the worldwide Episcopal Church. Providing teaching, focus, and adaptable resources to equip clergy and lay leaders to develop their year-round annual stewardship campaigns and to plan, ask for, and receive major gifts.

Spring 2021 Training will:
  • Help your team gather the best resources to transform all areas of stewardship and explore internal narratives of money while addressing societal shifts, organizational change, and leadership challenges.
  • Assist your team in interpreting the training curriculum, session by session, relative to their cultural and regional context.
  • Empower participants to leave the conference with a working plan and measurable objectives tailored specifically for their own congregation.

For more information visit the Project Resource website here.
Episcopal Relief & Development offers a new digital prayer tool, bringing together prayers from many sources and the opportunity to share prayers with others.
To submit news/events, please email communications@norcalepiscopal.org. The submission deadline is the Wednesday before the Tuesday publication.