Checking in: August 8, 2020

Photo: Joe & Erin Flinn
This Week's BLT features a reflection from the Executive Director the Witness Stones Project on the need to focus on Black Lives Matter
8th Graders from Madison Country Day school worked with to research the life of Lettuce Bailey, a woman who was enslaved and later emancipated by the then-pastor of the Congregational Church in Madison. They gathered to install a stone in her honor, and tell her story. Dennis Culliton, Exec Dir. of Witness Stones Project, talked about why it matters.
Rachel Thomas attended along with the Rev. Shariya Molegado, Rector of St. Andrew's Episcopal Church in Madison.
For Future BLT's: I'd love to hear stories especially from parishes who have not yet been you know who you are? (I do). Please be in touch and we can talk what and how! Don't hide your light under a bushel basket!
Expanding our Theological Imagination by
expanding our community of faith:
Two different events are being offered soon to mark the life and ministry of Jonathan Myrick Daniels. One here in ECCT; the other from the Diocese of Alabama. Timely remembrances to inspire us today.
Saturday, August 15, 11:00 AM until 1:00 PM
The Episcopal Diocese of Alabama

You have three options for viewing this online event: 
Our YouTube Channel: 
Our Facebook Page: 
For 21 years the Episcopal Diocese of Alabama has co-sponsored, with its sister Commission in the Diocese of the Central Gulf Coast, an annual pilgrimage to Hayneville, Alabama, to commemorate the life and work of Jonathan Myrick Daniels, a martyr of the Episcopal Church, along with other martyrs of the civil rights movement. Thousands have attended the pilgrimage over the years, to march together to the jail where he and others were imprisoned, to the site where he was killed, and then to a worship service in the very courtroom where his killer was acquitted by an all-white, all-male jury for the charge of manslaughter.
This year’s pilgrimage on Saturday, August 15, at 11 a.m., will mark the first time it will be held online. This event is not only a momentous time in this country’s history for discussions about race but also an opportunity to spread widely this story to those who are unable to physically participate and to those who have yet to hear the account of this remarkable man and others killed during the civil rights movement.
Our keynote speaker will be the Very Rev. Dr. Kelly Brown Douglas
Being Disciples and Apostles: work on being Anti-Racist
Resources from the
Racial Healing, Justice and Reconciliation Ministry Network

To learn more about the season and Ministry Network of Racial Healing, Justice, & Reconciliation, visit our website here.
Am I racist? We may not like the answer.
CNN’s John Blake called some activists, psychologists and historians and asked them: How would you help White people answer the question: Am I Racist?
One Team. One Dream. Be the Change
A group of Black athletes are working together to change the trajectory of diversity throughout baseball. By dedicating themselves to this cause, players are committing their personal time and energy to build a stronger and more successful game for the future. Their website has a variety of resources including a powerful one minute video:

CNN Podcast: Silence is Not an Option. Hosted by Don Lemon.
America is in crisis right now. A lot of people want to help, but have no idea where to start. In CNN’s new podcast, they’re going to dig deep into the reality of being Black and Brown in America, and explore what we can do to help find a path forward. They’ll have tough conversations with activists, artists, and thinkers about our nation’s deep racial divide. As we look for meaningful and lasting solutions, there is a lot to learn and unlearn. These conversations are going to be challenging—even uncomfortable—but they’re important. Because this time, we get to rebuild America together.,silence%20is%20not%20an%20option.
A community of Theological Imagination
Check out this interview between Presiding Bishop Michael Curry and Ruby Sales. Among many items for theological imagination, an alternative view of being anti-racist.
A crucial invitation for our time is to consider how what we hear from Jesus and say we believe influences how we act in the world around us. This means considering the political implications of following Jesus.
On the July 1 Zoom call with Clergy and Wardens, Bishop Douglas offered these helpful, brief words to guide us in thinking about the difference between being political and being partisan. Have a listen. (Thanks to Alli and Jasree for the tech support!)
Christian Discipleship & The Problem of Racism

Explore the connection between Christian discipleship and the problem of racism with an eye toward our collective and individual commitments to change these structures by aligning them with the Gospel of Jesus Christ. This free, public seminar is offered by St. Chrysostom's Church in Chicago, in partnership with Bexley Seabury Seminary. To register, sign up here.
Tuesday, August 25, the Rev. Dr. Jason Fout, Associate Professor of Anglican Theology at Bexley Seabury, will share his experience and theological take on the history and sin of racism. Tuesday September 29, Dr. Williams will moderate a panel conversation with faculty of Bexley Seabury Seminary, and Tuesday October 27, Dr. Williams will conclude the series with practical next steps. We recommend you read his book Bonhoeffer’s Black Jesus: Harlem Renaissance Theology and An Ethic of Resistance and/or this excerpt.
Panelists Include:
·   Jason Fout - Associate Professor of Anglican Theology, Bexley Seabury; Chicago, Illinois
·   Nicholas Pearce - Professor, Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management, Founder and CEO, The Vocati Group, Assistant Pastor, Chicago’s historic Apostolic Church of God; Chicago, Illinois
·   Reggie Williams - Professor of Christian Ethics, McCormick Theological Seminary; Chicago, Illinois
Please register here:
Living as Disciples and Apostles:
following our carpenter Lord,
hoping that all people have a place to lay their heads
Middlesex Habitat for Humanity is preparing its latest build in Westbrook, and is seeking volunteers to help out.
The new site at 382 Hammock Road North will hold open volunteer days throughout the build, which will occur on Wednesdays, Fridays, and Saturdays from 8:30 am - 3:30 pm. Below you will find instructions on how to register to volunteer and check for open volunteer days.

How to Register as a Volunteer:
1.    For new volunteers, click here to register.
2.    Complete all information that applies to you.
3.    Click complete application.
4.    Once you complete the application, you will be notified by email that your registration has been processed. Then you may sign up for a shift through the Volunteer Portal

If you are already a registered MHFH volunteerclick here to sign up for a shift through the Volunteer Portal. You will then be prompted to sign in using your registered email and first name. Once you sign in you may sign up for a shift.
Building Capacity as disciples and apostles:
our lives as leaders in parishes
Episcopal Warden Private Facebook Group

For Stewards of God's Gifts
More information and free resources membership to TENS available at
Upcoming Workshops:
August 15 1:00 p.m. EST Creating Virtual Community for Stewardship - learn more about how to create meaningful small groups and pastoral teams virtually. 
 August 29 1:00 p.m. EST How to use the TENS 2020 Materials for your Stewardship Campaign - Walk through this year's resources to maximize their usefulness. 
For Communicators of the Gospel:
Workshops in Video/Live-Streaming, Graphic Design
and Social Media for Churches!

Thanks to our friends at Caffeinated Church for offering these three workshops throughout the fall. More information on the workshop descriptions on their website here.

August 26 at 1:00 pm ET - Creative Storytelling through Video and Live-Streaming Led by David Alexander, Communications Coordinator at St. Francis Episcopal Church in Houston, Texas. An Emmy award-winning producer and motion graphic artist with experience in music production and audio editing, David will lead a conversation on creative storytelling through video and live-streaming. Register here.
September 16 at 1:00 pm ET - Graphic Design for Beginners Register here.
October 14 at 1:00 pm ET - Social Media for Churches Register here.
Being and forming disciples & apostles: in the home
Parenting in the Wilderness: A Sacred Space for Connection & Fun

9am, Noon or 8:30pm the 2nd & 4th Thursdays of the month
Begins Thursday, June 25

Word on the street is that parenting and providing care for children of all ages has been a bit more (ahem) challenging in the last few months. While many of us have reached our Zoom limits, ECCT invites you into a sacred space of compassion and grace, hoping to provide some support and fellowship to those of us struggling to make it all work, as we care for children. We hope to have a little fun together, too. Each meeting, we’ll gather together with clergy and lay facilitators to hold one another up.

Please be sure your name in your Zoom “square” displays your name & your parish affiliation, so that we can safely be in conversation.
Disciples and Apostles in Creation care and enjoyment
The Friends of Whalebone Cove (FoWC, Facebook page) have a few Paddle and Pull dates in Hadlyme's Selden Cove.

What do they paddle? canoes or kayaks. What do they pull? The invasive water chestnuts. If you can help on any of the followings for the "Paddle and Pulls" in Hadlyme’s Selden Cove, please contact

Thursday 8/20 - 12 Noon (Rain Date: Fri. 8/21 - 1 PM)
Thursday 9/3 - 12 Noon (Rain Date: Fri. 9/4 - 1 PM)
Tuesday 9/29 - 9AM (Rain Date: Wed. 9/30 - 10 AM)
Work with neighbors in the Haddam, Essex, Deep River, Chester, and Old Saybrook Area to build a Pollinator Pathway East. There is a Facebook group, and is looking for people to expand the pathway. Look for the group to join and learn more! If you're not on Facebook, contact Rachel and she'll connect you with the leader.
The Climate and Environment Ministry Network of ECCT will be meeting via Zoom on Thursday, August 13th, at 7:30 p.m. Here are some of the items they'll be considering.

1. Our country and many others are experiencing a shift in social and environmental attitudes as a result of the pandemic. At the same time, a new study of climate change has narrowed the uncertainty about the impact of CO2, showing that prompt and effective action is even more urgent than previously believed.
2. How can we encourage our country to adopt a comprehensive plan to address climate change, such as a "Green New Deal"?
3. What more can we personally and collectively do to reduce our individual environmental impact, and that of our houses of worship?
4. How can we help address environmental racism?
5. At least one solar energy company is eager to offer cash incentives to individuals and their congregations for each household that installs leased solar equipment. Is there a role for the Ministry Network, the Regions, or the Diocese in making such offers more widely known?
Please contact Dana Sawyer, the Convener, if you would like to participate.
Fed by Word and Sacraments:
Midweek opportunities for worship and study
Weekly: Check out the series on Daily Prayer produced each week
by the Rev. Stacey Kohl of Christ Episcopal Church, Norwich:

Daily Noonday prayer: St. James’, New London
St. Ann's, Old Lyme, 9:00 p.m. Compline

St. Stephen’s, East Haddam, 8:00 a.m. and noonday; 
St. Ann's, Old Lyme, 10:00 a.m. Morning Prayer via Zoom
St. James’, New London, 10:00 a.m. Bible study via zoom – details at
St. Andrew's, Madison, 7:00 p.m. Compline

St. John’s, Essex; 9:00 a.m Link to YouTube channel at
Grace, Old Saybrook: 10:00 a.m. Healing prayers
St.Mark’s, Mystic, 11:00 a.m. St. Mark’s Live - a grab bag of classes and conversations

St. Stephen’s, East Haddam 8:00 a.m. and noonday.

St. James’, New London, 10:00 a.m. Fellowship, sharing, visiting time.

Grace, Old Saybrook, 7:00 - 8:30 p.m.: Zoom bible study of John's Gospel on 1st and 3rd Thursdays. Contact for zoom link.

St. James', Preston and Grace, Yantic, 7:00 - 8:00 p.m. Dwelling in the Word and Compline Join Zoom Meeting;
password 246835 Meeting ID: 662 330 272
One tap mobile +16465588656,,662330272# US (New York)

Deacon Ron Steed is hosting a weekly, guided healing-prayer meditation on Fridays at 8:00 am on zoom."I lead you into a safe and quiet space with silence and storytelling, then guide us through some healing prayer for whoever is on your heart.We should finish in about 30 minutes with a little time for reflection." Contact Ron for the link. 
Connected to the Wider Body of Christ
It's Coming! ECCT Annual Convention!
Big Questions!
After receiving a number of questions from Episcopalians all over Connecticut, those who submitted a question participated in a special workshop on August 1. At the workshop, participants dug into their question, refining and re-working it until they were left with a Big Question. Below, you will find the eight Big Questions that emerged from the workshop.
Everyone who has registered for Convention by August 11 will receive instructions on how to vote for the questions that they feel most passionate about. If you haven’t registered yet, hurry up and register before August 11 to help select the three Big Questions that we will address at our World Cafes at this year’s Convention.
Here are the questions! Vote for your choice as a conversation to have with other Episcopalians across ECCT at this year's Annual Convention.

The World Cafe Conversations will take place October 14, 15, and 16 and will be free of charge.
If you're not familiar with World Cafe, you can find out what we considered last year on the ECCT Annual Convention page from 2019. is your go-to website for Convention updates.
Here's is a link to the "Living with COVID-19: Protocols and Directions" document developed as CT began to enter Phase 1, as well as now moving into Phase 3 of opening up some public spaces.
Remember to check out all the great resources on the COVID-19 page at You'll find resources on:
  • Finances
  • Digital and Online Communication
  • Self-Care
  • Recordings of Bishops and Wardens zooms
  • Listing of Livestream worship
  • Materials presented by Robin Hameal Urban and Lee Ann Tolzmann on Effective Leadership during Anxiety & Pandemic

Digital Office Hours with Jasree and Alli! Every Thursday, 1:00 pm - 2:00 pm. What a treat! Register here.
Speaking of being connected to the wider body of Christ...
Are you signed up for the ECCT eNews?
This last week's issue included stories about the Ekklesia Ballet at Holy Trinity in Middletown, the SW Region Census Forum, Kelli's Corner, and links to an LGBTQ+ Survey, among other things.
CLICK HERE to get it delivered to your inbox! It's full of helpful information.