May 8, 2019
Volume 9, No. 37
Search Profile Complete! Nominations Accepted
The Search Committee for the 11th Bishop of Georgia is pleased to present the Profile of our diocese and announce the opening of nominations and applications.

View and download the profile at Nomination and applications forms are available at

Nominations and applications will be received until 5 PM, Friday, June 7. Please keep our diocese, the committee, and all applicants and nominees in your prayers.

For more information please visit the search website, follow the Search Committee on Facebook at @georgiabishopsearch, or email us at

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This Sunday's Lections
Acts 9:36-43
Revelation 7:9-17
John 10:22-30
Psalm 23
Go  here for the full text.

 Saint Anna Alexander Chapel Dedicated
Margaret Pearson, left, and Evalena Hoskins from St. Matthew's, Savannah
On Friday, May 3 at 11 AM, people from across the Diocese gathered for the dedication of the Saint Anna Alexander Chapel at the Diocesan House, 18 E. 34th Street, Savannah. Due to the size of the crowd, the Eucharist was held in the center hall with participants moving to the chapel for the actual dedication and an overflow crowd standing outside.

To download a copy of the bulletin used at the dedication, go
here.   Join us for Eucharist in the chapel at Diocesan House at noon, Thursday.

ECW/Daughters of the King Retreat
  Some images from the Retreat/Meeting: Prayer net for the Order of the Daughters of the King (top left); Becca Stevens and her crew from Thistle Farms take a snapshot with the Rev. Amy Bradley of St. Augustine's of Canterbury (top, right): from upper left: The Rev. Amy Bradley, Tiffany, Trish Darlington (Augusta Coordinatior) Rachel, Becca Stevens in center, Grace; the scene on Saturday.
The Bishop Knocks on the Door
The Collegiate Church of St. Paul the Apostle, Savannah
Founded in 1852 St. Paul's began as a city mission started by Christ Church and St. John's, Savannah. After the Civil War, the church lost its parish status and was taken care of as a parochial mission of St. John's until 1892. It was a free pew church, the first in the city, sustained by the gifts of the parishioners. The original building on Calhoun Square burned to the ground in 1866 in what was considered arson as St. Paul's congregation was of mixed races. In 1907 the church moved to its current building.

"There are several patterns that run deep throughout St. Paul's history, providing the very framework of its identity--and its future," said the Very Rev. Dr. William Willoughby, Rector.

He said that direct community involvement has long been a signature of the parish with St. Paul's giving birth to many organizations. Some of St. Paul's legacy projects include working on the first Habitat for Humanity project in Savannah; supplying a home for the Hope School for Hearing Impaired Children; providing a base and venue for E Cantori, Savannah's Children Choir and the Goliards. St. Paul's also partnered with other churches to start Hope House, a home for single mothers and their children. Inner City Night Mission for the Homeless came out of a summer mission at St. Paul's led by a monk from the Order of the Holy Cross. St. Paul's was one of several churches in Savannah to co-found Second Harvest Food Bank, and they still hold Thomas Square Food Pantry twice a month.

St. Paul's welcomed its new Assistant Priest, the Rev. Leonel Polanco de la Cruz from the Dominican Republic.
Although the congregation is not large in size, it does have tenacity and intentional gifts according to Willoughby who said, "I have been here for 32 years and many times I have found that when the opportunity occurs, the gifts make themselves available."

In 1989 the parish formed the St. Paul's Development Corporation to meet the need for affordable housing in Savannah. They worked with the Historic Savannah Foundation to revitalize the Lincoln Street Corridor. Also in 1989, the parish made the decision to make funds available to send all the children of the parish to not only camp but all diocesan youth events. Their commitment to youth ministry can be seen in their employment of a youth minister since 2000.

Another pattern would be a commitment to the worship of the church, the daily office and daily Eucharist. St. Paul's began celebrating the Eucharist every Sunday, starting in 1852 and by the 1890's and the parish's sixth rector, the Rev. John Scully started holding daily mass.

"There has been a deep commitment to the catechesis and formation of adults and children in the fullness of the Catholic faith," said Willoughby.

Eight vocations have come out of St. Paul's, including two from the young community that attends the Latino Mass, begun at St. Paul's in 2007:  the Rev. Sarah Zevellos, Deacon and the Rev. Victor Moreno, Deacon. 

With its rich history and its ability to respond to the community's needs, it will be exciting to see what new patterns emerge at the Collegiate Church of St. Paul the Apostle.

Those who were received and confirmed as well as St. Paul's clergy gather with Bishop Scott Anson Benhase following his Visitation. 
Administrator's Corner
Retirement Planning and Benefits for Lay Employees 
We often highlight the changes and specifics of clergy retirement benefits. However, for our dedicated lay employees, it is important to share available resources for your retirement planning. The Church Pension Group's (CPG) website provides several methods to engage in your retirement planning. You can engage in one on one conversations and view documents online. There is an online webinar coming up on May 30th at 3:30PM. I strongly encourage our administrators and lay employees to consider attending the live session online. For more information, see the available resources below: 
  • One-on-one financial education discussions - Lay employees can schedule a complimentary discussion with a financial education specialist to review their retirement needs and goals, understand their benefit choices, and develop a financial plan.
  • PlanAhead for Retirement® Calculator - This online retirement planning tool for lay employees who participate in either The Episcopal Church Lay Employees' Retirement Plan or The Episcopal Church Lay Employees' Defined Contribution Retirement Plan projects retirement income needs, estimates the percentage of needs covered, and allows individuals to revise their plan.
  • eLearning Library - An online learning center, this resource offers a wealth of information on financial planning and education topics.
  • Lay Retirement Readiness Webinar - We will highlight findings from our research on lay employee retirement readiness and explore themes regarding employment, finances, and retirement, along with planning resources (Thursday, May 30, 2019, at 3:30PM ET). Register at

In addition to CPG resources, Fidelity also provides several useful tools and resources. If you haven't logged into your NetBenefits account to view your investments and contributions, I strongly encourage you to. It is a great way to learn about your retirement investments and available benefits through Fidelity. Below are some of the available resources:

  • NetBenefits Library offers a range of items including calculators and tools, videos, and articles
  • Fidelity's Event Registration System provides complimentary online workshops on a variety of topics, including college planning, budgeting, and retirement. Events are offered daily and on-demand. Attend one workshop or several-the choice is yours.
  • Budget Check-up allows you to view how your actual saving and spending compare with Fidelity's guidelines.
  • Emergency Fund Tips offers a short video highlighting three important suggestions about starting and maintaining an emergency fund.

Financial planning is often portrayed as a difficult and complex topic. However, education and resources are key to successful planning and engagement. I hope you find these resources valuable as you plan your future financial goals.

Katie Easterlin  

Canon for Administration

Youth Ministry
Toil 'N Sweat Digs Up a Labyrinth
This past weekend 14 youth and adults from across the Diocese came to Honey Creek to offer their labor to help take care of this much-loved place. The group was asked to unearth a labyrinth by the Outdoor Chapel. 

This labyrinth had been laid down with flagstones a few decades ago, but between the storms, the marsh, and the soft earth, nearly all the stones had been completely covered over by dirt and then grass. When the group started work, the area was a field. But through lots of exploration, digging, and placement of flagstones, the group slowly unearthed the entire labyrinth. Some of the rocks were over six inches below the surface! On Sunday morning, after the conclusion of their work, the group walked the labyrinth together.
In addition to this primary project, certain members of the group worked on building cubbies for the dorms, to be used for storage of campers' belongings this summer, and on cleaning out "the Hut," which is used for storage of materials for Youth Programs (photo at left). All of the work was immensely successful, and the laborers were justifiably proud of their accomplishments! In addition to all this work, the group got to spend significant time resting and hanging out together, leading one adult to remark that this might be the first time she had returned from Honey Creek more physically rested than when she arrived!
Toil 'N Sweat allows both youth and adults to put their faith into action by caring for a place that is so important to so many in the Diocese. Next year's service event will be April 24-26, 2020, so put it on your calendar now!

The Rev. Canon Joshua Varner
Canon for Children and Youth 

For information or supplies, contact Linda Sigg. To download a copy of the image above to post in your parish, go here. 

For information or supplies, contact Linda Sigg. To download a copy of the image above to post in your parish, go here. 

Time to make your summer plans...which means it's time to sign up for summer camp at Honey Creek. Pull up our website and go to the SUMMER CAMP tab to book your spot. Grab a friend and come to The Creek this summer!
Around the Diocese
St. Paul's Albany marked the 100th anniversary of its current house of worship. The original building was destroyed in the great fire of 2019.
The Rev. Charles Todd blesses the graduating seniors at the Episcopal Campus Ministry at Georgia Southern University
St. Anne's Tifton held their annual retreat at Honey Creek last weekend.

Dr. Howard Keeley, ECM Faculty Advisor & ECM officers (l to r: Mallory Watkins, Savannah Lyons and Cait McDaniel) complete the annual Student Organization Renewal Workshop at Georgia Southern. 
Don't see your church here? Be sure to send images to and you will!
From the Standing Committee
Regarding Delegates to the Diocesan Convention
and Election of the XI Bishop of the Diocese of Georgia
 T his is a reminder that the new Article III, Sec. 2 of the Canons of the Diocese of Georgia will be in effect at the upcoming Convention and Bishop Election of the Episcopal Diocese of Georgia on November 14-16, 2019. This Article states that the calculation of each congregation's number of delegates will be based on the Average Sunday Attendance reported on the congregation's previous three parochial reports. The following is an excerpt from the Article III, Sec. 2:
Congregations with an ASA of 99 or less shall be entitled to two Delegates; Congregations with an ASA of 100-199 shall be entitled to three Delegates; Congregations with an ASA of more than 200 shall be entitled to four Delegates. The Average Sunday Attendance for purposes of this canon shall be the average of the ASA reported on the previous three parochial reports extant.  
Although Parochial Reports are due on March 1 per the Canons on the Episcopal Church, the Standing Committee approved June 1 as the new deadline to file the 2018 Parochial Report for purposes of calculating the number of delegates for each congregation. If the 2018 Parochial Report is submitted by June 1, 2019, then the 2018 figures will be used in the three-year calculation of Average Sunday Attendance to determine how many delegates will be allowed to attend and vote at the November Convention of the Episcopal Diocese of Georgia. If the report is not filed by that date, the calculation will be based on the three most recent Parochial Reports that have been filed.  
Also, please note that according to Title I, Canon 2, Sec. 3 of the Canons of the Episcopal Diocese of Georgia, absent reason(s) sufficient or satisfactory to the Standing Committee, any Cleric whose congregations' canonically required reports (parochial and audit) have not been made prior to the Convention, may not be seated or vote at Convention.  
Thank you for your efforts to make sure that delegate eligibility requirements are fulfilled for the upcoming Diocesan Convention and Election of the Eleventh Bishop of the Diocese of Georgia.
Prayers for Weekly Liturgies
Our one-year prayer cycle combines prayers for every congregation in the Diocese of Georgia with prayers for our ecumenical partners and for our Companion Diocese of The Dominican Republic. The 52 weekly prayers are available in one document  found here. 

May 5-11
In our diocesan cycle of prayer, we pray for our congregation in Hawkinsville, St. Luke's. We also pray for our ecumenical partners, especially St. Mark's Catholic Church in Eastman. In our companion diocese of the Dominican Republic, we pray for Jesus the Messiah ( Jesús Mesías) in Imbert. 

May 12-18
In our diocesan cycle of prayer, we pray for our congregation in Hinesville, St. Philip's. We also pray for our ecumenical partners in Hinesville, especially St. Stephen's Catholic Church . In our companion diocese of the Dominican Republic, we pray for St. Matthew (San Mateo) in Jalonga.

Additional Prayer Cycles
We also offer 30-day prayer cycles for those who wish to pray daily for the clergy and clergy spouses:  Diocesan Prayer Cycle and  Clergy Spouses Prayer Cycle .
Diocesan Office Update and News
Bishop Scott Anson Benhase will make his annual visitation to Christ Church Dublin at 9:30 AM Sunday, May 12. The Bishop's full schedule can be found   here.  

The Rev. Frank Logue, Canon to the Ordinary, is on sabbatical through July 15.

The Rev. Melanie Lemburg, will officiate at the noon Thursday Eucharist in the Chapel of Saint Anna Alexander this week.
Assistant to the Canons Position Available
Looking for a meaningful job working with a great team? The Diocese of Georgia seeks a motivated individual to serve as the assistant to the Canon for Administration, the Canon for Children & Youth, and the Canon to the Ordinary. This position requires a flexible individual with strong communication and technical skills to support the business operations of the Diocese of Georgia. To find out more, click the link below:

Director of Music  Position Open
The congregations of St. Patrick's Episcopal Church and the Lutheran Church of Our Saviour, Albany, seek a part time Director of Music (Choirmaster/Organist). Go here to read the full posting. 

Dr. Catherine Meeks shared news of this wellness conference at the conclusion of the Clergy Retreat last week. Although the topic will be women of color, all women are invited to attend.
A Special Guest

St. Anne's Tifton received a special visit from Padre Manuel Díaz, the vicar of our sister congregation of Espíritu Santo in the Dominican Republic. Padre Manuel's visit was made possible by the children of our parish, who offered the money they raised at the Shrove Tuesday Pancake Supper to pay for his trip.
Ora et Labora (Pray and Work)
with the Creation Care Commission
May 17-18
Honey Creek Retreat Center
Diocesan Council
Saturday, May 18
St. Paul's, Augusta
Ordination to the Priesthood for the Rev. DeWayne Cope, Deacon
St. Matthew's Savannah
6:30 PM, Wednesday, May 22
Women's Mid-Life Reset Retreat
May 24-26
Honey Creek
Information and to register, go here .

Ordination to the Transitional Diaconate for Bradley Varnell, Brad Bates, and Kyle Carswell
Collegiate Church of St. Paul the Apostle, Savannah
10:30 AM, Saturday, May 25

Nominations for XI Bishop Close
Friday, May 31

EfM (Education for Ministry) 
3 PM Thursday, June 6 through 3 PM Saturday, June 8
Honey Creek
For more information, contact Rita Spalding, 912-270-2725 or email  
Ordination to the Priesthood for the Rev. Arthur Jones, Deacon
St. Thomas' Thomasville
10:30 AM Saturday, June 29

Diocesan Youth Mission Trip to Tennessee with Appalachia Service Project
July 13-20
Happening #102
Thursday, August 2 through Sunday, August 4; staff arrives August 1
Honey Creek Retreat Center
Ordination to the Priesthood of Samantha McKean
Christ Church, Savannah
10:30 AM, Saturday, August 17th

New Beginnings #55
September 6-8
Honey Creek Retreat Center

Diocesan Council
September 13-14

198th Convention of the Diocese of Georgia
November 14-16
Georgia Southern University
To register, go here.
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