Episcopal Diocese of Utah
February Newsletter: First Edition
February 12, 2021
Final Sunday After Epiphany
(February 14)
Liturgical color is Green

People of the Diocese,

Lent starts less than one week from today. Are you ready? Check out our newsletter for worship opportunities.

Additionally, we would like to hear from you about how your congregation is adapting to these unconventional times. Please continue sending any relevant resources or stories to Nick Cockrell at ncockrell@episcopal-ut.org

A Lenten Message
from Bishop Scott B. Hayashi
Lent is a season of reflection and contemplation and preparation for Easter. We accompany Jesus throughout the forty days to be with him as he withdrew to the desert for forty days of fasting and prayer. It is a season marked by joyful abstinence and sacrifice. Joyful? Why is it joyful? It is joyful because it brings us closer to God. We read scripture, we pray, we fast, we meditate upon the life of Jesus and his sacrificial death for us.

Living through the months of the pandemic, we have all been making sacrifices and abstaining from many things. Worshipping together in person, gathering for family events, going to the movies, greeting one another with a handshake or a hug when meeting one another on the street or at a gym or grocery store are just a few of the sacrifices or things that we have abstained from for nearly a year. I confess, I have not found this joyful. 

If, however, I change my perspective just slightly and look at these sacrifices through the lens of Lent, then I see us joining with Jesus as he abstained from eating and drinking at the Last Supper with his disciples "until that day when I drink it new with you in my Father’s kingdom." (Matthew 26:29b) I see us joining with Jesus as he lost fellowship with his disciples upon his arrest and they deserted him. 

As I meditate and reflect on this, I realize that because of the pandemic and the changes that it has brought, I have grown closer to God. I have prayed more fervently than ever before, listened for God's voice in the silence of my room, in the voices of other people and in the reading of scripture. I have grown closer with the clergy in charge of congregations as we have met together weekly via Zoom. I have come to a deeper understanding of the importance of relationships with God and others because of not being together with other people physically because of the pandemic. In this moment, I give thanks to God for this and for you.

May God continue to hold us in his almighty arms of love.

Coming Closer to God and Each Other
The Bishop’s Bible Study for Lent
Bishop Scott B. Hayashi invites you to participate with him in a Lenten Bible Study on Wednesday Evenings at 7:00 p.m. beginning on February 24th and continuing through Wednesday of Holy Week, March 31st.

Bishop Hayashi will engage the participants with stories from the Gospels in which Jesus teaches by word and example that he is for all people. The series will conclude with walking together through the Stations of the Cross.

The series will be held on Zoom only and will include small groups to discuss the Bible stories with an eye to learning from one another and getting to know each other from around our diocese.

Participation in this series is free, however, you must register in order that we can be ready to accommodate all who desire to join.



Ash Wednesday Health and Safety Updates
from Bishop Scott B. Hayashi
Ash Wednesday
Congregations of our diocese will be celebrating the service of Ash Wednesday virtually and through live broadcast. Services will also be recorded for later viewing for those who cannot be present during the time of the live / virtual service. 
 
Receiving the Imposition of the Ashes by a priest is for many people an important spiritual moment. With the pandemic a person may not want to risk venturing to the congregation to receive the imposition of ashes if it is offered following the virtual service or if he or she does not want to have the celebrant touch his or her forehead. That is completely understandable.
 
It is important to know that receiving the ashes is not mandatory for a person who participates in the service. That has always been the case. Also, there is no requirement that the ashes be imposed on the forehead. The ashes may be sprinkled on the head of a person. This would not require the actual physical touching of a person.
 
If having the ashes received in this way is still too uncomfortable then, since the receiving of ashes is not a sacrament and therefore does not require a priest to bless or administer them, I would offer to you to make ashes at your home, burning a small amount of wood or straw and saying the prayer from the Book of Common Prayer:
 
"Almighty God, you have created us out of the dust of the
earth: Grant that these ashes may be to us a sign of our
mortality and penitence, that we may remember that it is
only by your gracious gift that we are given everlasting life;
through Jesus Christ our Savior. Amen." 
 
And impose the ashes upon yourself or have someone in your household do that for you and you do it for the other person. 
 
Most importantly, begin the Holy Season of Lent with prayer and the intention of drawing closer to God and accompanying Jesus during the forty days of this season.



Join us for Online Worship
This week, we will continue normal weekend presentations of the services at the Cathedral Church of St. Mark. On Saturday, a Light in the Darkness prayer service will be available for viewing all day. Tune-in again on Sunday for worship on the Final Sunday after after Epiphany.


To view the services presented by the Diocese and the historic
Cathedral Church of St. Mark, visit Episcopal-ut.org


2021 Diocesan Convention
Updates
The Rt. Rev. Scott B. Hayashi has announced the Diocesan Convention for 2021 will be held April 24, 2021 via Zoom. We are scheduled to begin at 9:00 AM and unlike past conventions, all business will conclude in one day (there will be no Sunday session). Visit DiocesanConvention2021.org for all pertinent information, resolutions, offices under election, and instructions.

The Diocese will have a number of positions open. Please consider helping govern the Diocese as we all adapt to these unusual times.
Positions open include:
  • Diocesan Treasurer
  • Salt Lake and Eastern/Southeastern Regional Representatives to Diocesan Council
  • Two clergy terms on Diocesan Council
  • One lay and one clergy term to Standing Committee
  • One lay and two clergy Disciplinary Board members.
  • Nomination forms are available on the Convention website.

Pre-Convention Meeting on March 20, 2021
At this mandatory pre-convention meeting for convention participants, we will discuss resolutions, offer a narrative about the 2021 budget passed by the Diocesan Council, introduce candidates for a number of offices, and have the elections for two regional representatives for Diocesan Council.


Registration
All delegates, clergy, and presenters who intend to participate in the Diocesan Convention must register by March 12. Click here to register.


Ordination of Suzanne Miller
Good Shepherd Episcopal Church, Ogden
The Rt. Rev. Scott B. Hayashi ordained The Rev. Suzanne Miller to the Transitional Diaconate on January 29th . All ordinations are unique and historic in a diocese, but this one also becomes a footnote in our history. It was conducted via zoom with just ten people at the Church of the Good Shepherd in Ogden and the rest celebrating and praying from cyberspace. Additionally, the service was kept short under health guidelines to reduce indoor gatherings. There was no singing, which has been deemed unhealthful because of the force of air being spread throughout the room and a minimum of physical contact with social distancing the rule. The newest ordained of the diocese is scheduled to be ordained to be a priest in approximately a half year. The whole service can be seen on the diocesan YouTube channel.

Camp Tuttle: Save the Date
Ingrid VanZanten
Hello Campers, Parents, & Families of Camp Tuttle,

I hope this update finds you safe and well. The first of the year has been quite eventful so far and the youth and families of our community are never far from my mind.

Summer is approaching quickly and I wanted to give you an update, in so far as I can, to keep you in the loop about summer 2021 and what it will look like. With the help of neighboring camps and other camp associates, the Camp Tuttle staff and I have been carefully planning camps for this summer that ensure the safety of all staff and campers.

Though the format or style of camps has not yet been finalized, please know that the month of July and early August will be full of options and opportunities for youth ages 8-18 to attend Camp Tuttle in some way. We will be holding camps that satisfy all required and recommended safety precautions given to us by state and local authorities. These may or may not include smaller groups of campers overnight, extended day camp programs, and/or extended overnight backpacking trips.

We miss our community very dearly and can't wait to see you again soon in the mountains. Please stay tuned for more details as the winter and spring progress, and for now: mark your calendars for July and early August. Send any questions or concerns you may have to ivanzanten@episcopal-ut.org, and above all, stay safe and healthy.

Peace and Love,

Ingrid VanZanten
Camp Tuttle Director


Youth and Family Program Updates
Diocesan Event sponsored by The Faith Formation Committee

Live presentation by author Wendy Claire Barrie. Everyone is welcome! Sunday, February 21st at 4:00pm
Faith At Home: A Handbook for Cautiously Christian Parents Wendy is an amazing author, editor and Christian formation expert who has lots of great ideas for cultivating faith traditions in the home. We would like to invite you to join us for this engaging presentation. There is no need to have read the book,

Zoom Invite
Time: 4pm on Sunday, Feb. 21st
Meeting ID: 869 3562 2447   Passcode: 106443
One tap mobile +13462487799

This event will be recorded and posted on our Facebook page: Utah Faith Formation for Families

Please click here to meet Wendy Claire Barrie: Faith at Home. Or visit her website: https://wendyclairebarrie.com/


Youth and Young Adults Event

Sledding and Snowshoeing at Camp Tuttle
  • February 27th - Youth in Grades 6-12
  • February 28th - Young Adults (18+ yrs)
  • Where: Meet at Camp Tuttle at 10:30am - 2:30pm
  • Cost: Donations requested, which will be donated to our camp facility fund
  • Register: www.camptuttle.org under registration tab or Campsite software
  • Registrations will be limited and for safety, everyone is required to wear a mask and maintain 6 feet of social distance.
  • Waivers will need to be filled out since this is the first event of 2021, and are valid for the whole year. Covid release forms will need to be filled out for each event.
  • Please bring your own lunch. Light snacks and hot chocolate will be provided.
  • We will have snowshoes and sleds available, but you are welcome to bring your own. Parents are welcome to drop off youth or stay in camp with us, socially distanced with masks on.

For any questions or concerns, please contact Karen Gleeson at kgleeson@episcopal-ut.org or call 801-349-0336

The Way of Love Lenten Quiet Day
Sunday March 13
The journey through Lent into Easter is a journey with Jesus. We are baptized into his life, self-giving, and death; then, we rise in hope to life transformed. This Lent, you are invited to walk with Jesus in his Way of Love and into the experience of transformed life. Together, we will reflect anew on the loving actions of God as recounted in Easter Vigil readings. Together, we will walk through the depths of salvation history into the fullness of redemption. This Quiet Day for Lent ties the Easter Vigil readings to the practices of the Way of Love.

The Way of Love Lenten Quiet Day will be Saturday, March 13, starting at 9 and ending at 4.


More details coming soon...

Bishop Search Committee Updates
This is another in a series of communications from the Nominating/Search Committee. The articles are designed to inform and educate the Diocese about the search process. This is from committee member Mike Mitchell (St. James, Midvale)

  • Front Row, from Left to Right: The Rev. Kathalin Walker, St. David’s, Page, AZ | Mary McEntire, St. Luke’s, Park City, UT | Rhonda Dossett, St. Paul’s, Salt Lake, UT
  • Back Row, from Left to Right: Mike Mitchell, St. James, Midvale, UT | Atem Aleu, All Saints Salt Lake, UT | Rick Stevenson, St. Stephen’s, West Valley, UT The Rev. Christopher Szarke, St. James, Midvale, UT | The Very Rev. Tyler Doherty, St. Mark’s Cathedral, Salt Lake, UT | The Rev. Michael Carney, St. Elizabeth’s, Whiterocks, UT | William Downes, St. Mark’s Cathedral Salt Lake, UT

After a five-month sabbatical (because of COVID 19), the Search/Nominating Committee for our new bishop met by Zoom Conference call on January 23. Rev Michael Carney (Committee Chair) reviewed key dates for the continuation of the search. Publication of dates will be made later. A key date is for the Diocesan wide survey, which will be made available later this month. It will be published in both English and Spanish. The Search/Nominating Committee wants to hear from you.

As we search for a Bishop, it’s important to gather as much information from as many individuals as possible. All congregants and clergy within our Diocese are invited to complete the survey. What do you think we should seek in a Bishop? The characteristics you identify are vital to leading our Diocese and will guide our discernment process. The survey will guide us in what we seek in our next Bishop and will become the integral part of the Diocese Profile.

As mentioned in previous article the Search/Nominating Committee commissioned a company by the name of Holy Cow to conduct the survey. They have conducted more than a dozen survey’s nationally for the search for Episcopal Bishops.

The survey will be circulated to all Parishes on February 28 through March 17, 2021. A link will be provided in your Parish newsletter or Parish email. We also provide a written survey for those who may not have access to a computer through your Parish.

When the survey is disturbed to all Parishes, we encourage you to participate and take an active role in completing it. Your voice is important to our search. Peace and Blessings, Mike Mitchell
St. Mark's winter tower

Resource: Lenten Study Series
St. George's College (Jerusalem)
"A River Through the Desert"
Lent Course from St. George's College