May 23, 2023

Dear Beloved Siblings in Christ in the Diocese of Western North Carolina,

We write on behalf of the Standing Committee and the Executive Council in order to share and celebrate our ongoing efforts in leadership development in the Diocese. In September of 2020, the Standing Committee and Bishop José worked together to conduct a mutual ministry review (MMR), which analyzed Diocesan ministries, relationships, and leadership, and included members from Executive Council, the Deans of the Diocese, key members of Diocesan staff, and the directors of both Lake Logan and the Valle Crucis Conference Center. This process is similar to those required periodically of every rector and parish in the Diocese and is a high priority of Bishop José’s.

Stemming from this MMR process was the identification of our need to cultivate strong lay and clergy leadership in all areas of Diocesan life, which led us to establish a Leadership Task Force comprised of clergy and lay leaders from Executive Council, Standing Committee, as well as other Diocesan stakeholders. The Leadership Task Force met and developed both a theological reflection on what it means to be a “Diocese” which draws from Scripture and church history, as well as specific recommendations for further strengthening Diocesan relationships and leadership. Their report is attached here.

In addition, as part of the Bishop and Standing Committee’s ongoing commitment to mutual empowerment, partnership, and collaboration, the Standing Committee and Bishop conducted a “SCOT” assessment, analyzing areas of strength, challenge, opportunity, and tension. The report from this process is also attached here.

As Bishop José prepares to embark on a much-deserved sabbatical, our Diocese is fortunate to be in a position of strength and vitality. Our shared mission and ministry will continue this summer while Bishop José is away, and we are well-positioned to begin a new chapter together upon his return!

Every blessing,


The Reverend Dr. Marshall Jolly                       


Standing Committee

Gordon Hamilton


Executive Council

The Episcopal Diocese of Western North Carolina
900B CentrePark Drive
Asheville, NC 28805

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