October 13, 2021
St. Stephen's, Elwood to Close
On October 12, Bishop Jennifer announced that St. Stephen's, Elwood would conclude its ministry on October 24.

"This will be the first time in our ministry together that a church has closed, and while we grieve the end of any congregation’s ministry, our faith assures us that holy endings make way for holy beginnings," the bishop wrote in an email to the diocese. "In our diocese, we are deeply invested in providing support and resources for congregations seeking new ways of participating in God’s mission, and my staff and I are eager to talk with any congregation about the programs, training, and consulting that can help revitalize congregational mission and ministry."

The bishop will preside at St. Stephen's final service on October 24 at 3 p.m. Eastern/2 p.m. Central. All are invited, and clergy may vest if they wish, the color is red.

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 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 the same. Early bird registration is $50 using the code "Early Bird" until October 15, after which the price increases to $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 calling: 1-800-EMBASSY (1-800-362-2779).

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 hotel lobby and outdoor areas at 6 p.m. on Friday
  • Snacks following the conclusion of convention on Saturday.

Find more updated information about diocesan convention on the diocesan website.
Diocesan Leaders Run Virtual Boston Marathon
On October 9, Bishop Jennifer and Canons Kristin White and Brendan O'Sullivan-Hale were part of a group that completed the Virtual Boston Marathon. The trio began training together for the 26.2 mile event last spring. Friends and family met them with refreshment and encouragement as they ran south along the Monon Trail from Sheridan into Indianapolis.
Spade, Spoons, Soul Podcast Out Now
The second 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.

Limited Availability for Iona Celtic Retreat
Join Bishop Jennifer and John Philip Newell June 18-25

A few spots remain open for the Iona Celtic Retreat, June 18-25, 2022. Participants will travel with Bishop Jennifer to the sacred Isle of Iona, off the western coast of Scotland. 

The retreat will be led by the Rev. John Philip Newell, an internationally known expert on Celtic spirituality. Spots will be filled on a first-come, first-serve basis.

St. David's, Bean Blossom Hosts Pollinator Day Camp
Local landowners to receive "seed bombs" for butterflies
St. David's, Bean Blossom hosted a Pollinator Day Camp in July for children 3 and up. Participants in the four-day program made a worm farm, a worker bee habitat and a garden planter of milkweed and flowers. 

The camp focused special attention on the Monarch butterfly, which is in danger of extinction due to climate change, the use of agricultural insecticides and the destruction of its habitats. Campers made “seed bombs" for the butterflies that will scattered across 100 acres pledged by more than 25 landowners. 

More than 3,000 seed bombs will be distributed on October 20 and 21 in the hope that flowers and milkweed will emerge next spring.
Clergy and Lay Leader News
Annual Benefits Enrollment 2022
Annual enrollment for individuals eligible to participate in diocesan employee benefits plans begins on October 27 and concludes on November 17. This is the opportunity for staff 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 employees by the Episcopal Church Medical Trust approximately one week before enrollment begins, in a pale green envelope.

An informational meeting with more details on the plans will be held via Zoom on Tuesday, October 19 at 5 pm EDT. The meeting will be recorded.

Personnel Policy and Compensation Committee Recommends Cost of Living Increases
At its meetings in August and September, the Personnel Policy and Compensation Committee decided to 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 decided to hold the employee premium cost share for medical insurance at 22% for one more year. The cost share will resume its gradual increase to 25% in 2023. A summary of 2022 compensation policies is available on the diocesan website.

Illuminations of Love Art Exhibit
Illuminations of Love, a spiritual art walk, is now open at St. Francis In-The-Fields, Zionsville. Illuminations of Love features artwork from artist Elizabeth Wang.

The exhibit will be available during daylight hours throughout the fall as weather permits. Reflections on the exhibit are accessible on mobile device and QR codes at each station. Printed booklets are also available.

Contact St. Francis at info@stfranciszionsville.org or at 317-873-4377 with any questions.
Fall Events at Holy Family, Fishers
Trunk or Treat on October 29
Holy Family, Fishers will hold its annual Trunk or Treat event for children on Friday, October 29 from 6 to 7:30 pm Eastern / 5 to 6:30 p.m. Central. Learn more.

Halloween Bloodmobile on October 31
Holy Family in Fishers will host its annual Halloween blood drive bloodmobile on Sunday, October 31 from 2 to 4:30 p.m. Eastern / 1 to 3:30 p.m. Central. Learn more and sign up. Email Jolene Johnston with questions.

Fall Bazaar on November 20
Holy Family will host a Fall Bazaar on November 20 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Eastern / 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Central. Interested vendors should register online before November 10. Please email the coordinators at fallbazaar@hfec.org for more information.
This Band of Sisterhood Webinar on October 27
A conversation with the first five Black diocesan bishops
On October 27 at 7 p.m. Eastern / 6 p.m. Central, 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.
Sign up for Campus Tours at St. Richard's
St. Richard's Episcopal School in Indianapolis is hosting personalized campus tours on November 6 between 10:00 a.m. and noon Eastern.

Individual tours, one family at a time, will be held in a one-way traffic pattern through the campus and will include an opportunity to talk with current parents, leadership, and the admissions team. Advance registration is required here.
Employment Opportunities
Director of Communications
Trinity, Indianapolis
Trinity, Indianapolis is seeking a director of communications to develop, coordinate, and implement communication efforts in support of the mission and ministries of the parish.

Welcoming Afghanistan Allies
Thousands of Afghans have now arrived at Camp Atterbury, located southeast of Indianapolis. 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
While congregations are not meeting in person due to the coronavirus pandemic, the bishop's office will 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 17: St. Stephen’s, Terre Haute | The Rev. Andrew Downs; The Rev. Deby Veach

October 24: St. Thomas, Franklin | The Rev. Whitney Smith

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

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