OCTOBER 20, 2021
News
Diocesan Convention is November 13
The 184th Convention of the Episcopal Diocese of Indianapolis will be held in a hybrid format on Saturday, November 13 at the Embassy Suites in Plainfield from 9 a.m. Eastern/8 a.m. Central to 4 p.m. Eastern/3 p.m. Central. Hotel accommodations are available for the night of November 12. 

Clergy and delegates are welcome to join in person or via Zoom. To participate in person, attendees will need to show proof of full COVID-19 vaccination or a negative test taken within the previous 48 hours. All in-person participants will be required to wear masks at all times during convention. A Zoom option is available for those wishing to participate remotely. 

Alternates and guests are invited to watch a livestream via YouTube.

Registration: Deadline October 29
Registration is now open. All delegates and clergy must register and indicate whether they will participate in person or via Zoom.

The fee for in-person or online participation is $75. Registration closes on October 29. No refunds will be given after November 5. Register here.

Hotel Reservations
Reserve a room for the night of November 12 at the Embassy Suites Plainfield using the code EDC. Reservations can also be made by calling: 1-800-EMBASSY (1-800-362-2779).

Pre-Convention Hearing on November 6
A pre-convention hearing will take place on November 6 at 10 a.m. Eastern/9 a.m. Central on Zoom.

Budget
The following documents will be reviewed and voted on at convention:

Constitution and Canons
View a proposed revision to Canon 7 to be considered at convention.

Resolutions
View a resolution to be considered. Note this resolution was received after the deadline, and will need to be proposed from the floor during convention.

Nominations
Learn more about leadership positions that will be elected either within Neighborhoods or at diocesan convention and submit a nomination. 

Social Gatherings
The diocese will host two social gatherings at convention. Social distance will be observed and masks will be required when not eating or drinking.

  • Heavy appetizers and beverages in the lobby and outdoor areas at 6 p.m. on Friday
  • Snacks following the conclusion of convention on Saturday.

Banners
Participants are invited to bring parish banners, signs or flags for the opening and closing worship services. Please make sure to bring the banner stand. Parishes are also invited to provide a photo or two for a slide show. Photos may be emailed to Joanna Benskin.

Find more updated information about diocesan convention on the diocesan website.
Annual Benefits Enrollment 2022
Annual enrollment in diocesan employee benefits plans begins on October 27 and concludes on November 17. This is your opportunity to change insurance plans, add beneficiaries, or participate in benefits plans for the first time, without having to demonstrate a qualifying event. For most employees, the process will be online. Instructions will be mailed to you in a pale green envelope by the Episcopal Church Medical Trust approximately one week before enrollment begins.

The diocese is not changing any of its plan offerings in 2022, but there are some important updates to the benefits within the plans themselves. These include an indefinite extension of the broad availability of telemedicine first offered in response to the COVID pandemic, expanding virtual behavioral health options within the employee assistance program (EAP) through TalkSpace, and adding coverage of Exparel, a non-narcotic pain management drug, to our dental plans.

Medical insurance premiums will rise approximately 5.5% in 2022, while dental premiums will remain level. At the recommendation of the Personnel Policy and Compensation Committee, the employee premium cost share will remain at 22% in 2022, and will resume its gradual increase toward 25% in 2023. The preventive care incentive, which provides a rebate to plan participants of 1% of the total annual premium, remains in place in 2022. This benefit is worth approximately $90-$300, depending on the cost of the participant’s specific plan.

An informational meeting was held via Zoom on Tuesday, October 19. View the recording. If you are not currently covered by diocesan plans, or if your employment date was on or after August 1, 2021, online enrollment will not be available to you. Please contact Kim Christopher at christopher@indydio.org for assistance. More information can be found on the Compensation & Benefits page of the diocesan website.
Personnel Policy and Compensation Committee Recommends Cost of Living Increases
At its meetings in August and September, the Personnel Policy and Compensation Committee recommend a cost of living increase for lay and clergy employees of 3-5%. The top end of the range closely reflects actual inflation over the last twelve months, but a 3% floor is provided as an accommodation to the financial difficulties some congregations face. The committee continues to recommend a minimum $500 increase per year of experience in addition to the cost of living increase.

The minimum cash compensation package for full-time diocesan clergy rises to $65,804, not including pension benefits. The committee held the employee premium cost share for medical insurance at 22%. The cost share will resume its gradual increase to 25% in 2023. A summary of 2022 compensation policies is available on the diocesan website.

The guidelines issued by the committee are minimums. Congregations are encouraged to evaluate whether higher compensation is warranted when considering merit, equity, and the overall competitive environment. Tools that may aid that evaluation include Charitable Advisors’ 2021 Central Indiana Nonprofit Salary Survey and Church Pension Group’s 2019 Episcopal Clergy Compensation Report.
Events
2022 UTO Grant Information Session October 26
The application for 2022 United Thank Offering grants is now available. UTO will host two informational webinars on the application process on October 26 at 12 p.m. Eastern/11 a.m. Central and at 7 p.m. Eastern/6 p.m. Central.

Register online for the first webinar and the second.

This Band of Sisterhood Webinar on October 27
A conversation with the first Black female diocesan bishops
On October 27 at 7 p.m., Westina Matthews, editor of "This Band of Sisterhood," will host an online conversation with Bishop Jennifer and Bishops Carlye J. Hughes of Newark, Kimberly Lucas of Colorado, Shannon MacVean-Brown of Vermont, and Phoebe A. Roaf of West Tennessee.

The webinar will take place on Zoom and will be broadcast on the Church of the Heavenly Rest Facebook page.


The book can be purchased at a 20% discount when ordered from Church Publishing, through October 31, using the promo code Band20.
Never Ask the Question Again, “What Am I Going to Say?”
Online Preaching Workshop, November 16
On Tuesday, November 16 at 1 p.m. Eastern /12 p.m. Central, the Rev. Dr. Lisa Cressman of Backstory Preaching, will lead an online preaching workshop.

Materials for this free one hour workshop, which will be held on Zoom, are available online
College for Congregational Development Session July 17-23
The College for Congregational Development, a week-long intensive training designed for teams of lay and clergy leaders, can help churches of every size, location, and circumstance become more faithful, healthy, and effective. Registration for the next session, scheduled for July 17 to 23, 2022, at Waycross Camp and Conference Center, is now open. Register online.

Learn more about the experience of participants in this year's College for Congregational Development training. Contact Canon Kristin White with questions and register online
Employment Opportunities
Canon for Spiritual Formation
Christ Church Cathedral 
Christ Church Cathedral is seeking a canon for spiritual formation. The new canon will work to renew and revitalize all aspects of the cathedral's formation and educational ministries, including its offerings for children, youth, and adults. 

Diocesan Youth Ministry Coordinator
Christ Church Cathedral and the Episcopal Diocese of Indianapolis
Christ Church Cathedral and the Episcopal Diocese of Indianapolis are seeking a full-time youth ministry coordinator. The new coordinator will have a commitment to increasing the racial diversity of youth participating in our cathedral, congregations, and in diocesan life, with particular attention to serving youth of color within and in proximity to the cathedral and diocesan communities. Download the job description.

To apply, please send a letter of interest, resumé, and references to Canon Kristin White.
Reminders
Spade, Spoons, Soul Podcast Out Now
The third episode of Bishop Jennifer's new podcast, "Spades, Spoons, Soul," is now available. The podcast focuses on the intersections of food and faith and is co-hosted by Good News Gardens Coordinator Brian Sellers-Peterson and Episcopal Church Staff Officer for Evangelism Jerusalem Greer.

Free Stewardship Resources Available from TENS
The Diocese of Indianapolis is a member of The Episcopal Network for Stewardship (TENS), which offers training and resources for inspiring generosity and conducting pledge campaigns. Resources are freely available to congregations of the diocese using the password 
James1:17 (no username necessary).
Resources Available Through UTO
United Thank Offering is offering resources for practicing gratitude in new ways this November.

The November 2021 Gratitude Challenge offers participants four weeks of
practices to develop a more grateful heart by responding to God's gift of creation.

Both Thanksgiving Lessons for Families and Thanksgiving Lessons for Faith Formation Leaders offer parents and leaders two options to help children practice gratitude during the month of November. 

Contact Sherry Lotter at sherylotter@comcast.net or at 317-371-1337 with questions.
Welcoming Afghanistan Allies
Thousands of Afghans are at Camp Atterbury, located southeast of Indianapolis, while they await resettlement. To welcome them, please purchase items from this Amazon wish list and also this list of needed items. Please do not collect used clothing or other used items, which are not accepted for donation. 

Episcopal Migration Ministries (EMM), the refugee and migration ministry of the Episcopal Church, is one of nine national refugee resettlement agencies tasked with supporting Afghans who arrive with what the federal government calls parolee status. Visit the EMM website to learn about ways Episcopalians can help.
CDC Guidelines, Regathering Guidance
The CDC's recommendations now advise fully-vaccinated people to wear masks in public, indoor settings in areas of substantial or high transmission

Read a summary of the updates and check the level of transmission for any county on the CDC website.

As a reminder, Bishop Jennifer recommends that congregational regathering teams continue to meet regularly, monitor local conditions, and make changes when necessary. Read more.
COVID-19 Vaccinations in Indiana
Anyone age 12 and older may schedule a COVID-19 vaccination appointment. In addition, the CDC now recommends that some groups should receive a booster shot of Pfizer-BioNTech's COVID-19 Vaccine.

Learn more at ourshot.in.gov, or call 211 (866-211-9966.) Walk-in appointments are also accepted at most vaccination sites. 
Pay Pledges Online
Bishop's Office Will Process Online Gifts to Congregations at No Cost
Although many congregations are now meeting in person, the bishop's office will continue to process online gifts on behalf of congregations, and will absorb all payment processing fees.

Use this link to make contributions or pledge payments to any congregation, and please share this news widely on your congregation's social media channels and during online worship.
Diocesan Cycle of Prayer
Diocesan Cycle of Prayer
October 24 – St. Thomas, Franklin | The Rev. Whitney Smith

October 31 – All Saints, Indianapolis | The Rev. Sam Vaught

In October, pray for those affected by domestic violence (Domestic Violence Awareness Month) 

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