Volume 4, Issue 27
July 5, 2019
THIS SUNDAY: July 7, 2019
Fourth Sunday after Pentecost
Isaiah 66:10-14
Psalm 66:1-8
Galatians 6:7-16
Luke 10:1-11, 16-20

Joe Adorno (EM)
John Hanaoka (U)
Diane Sato (AG)

Dileep Bal (EM)
Chris Wataya, Joan Roughgarden (R)
Bara Sargent, CeCe Caldwell (U)
Janis Wright (AG)
Raiden, Daileen (A)
Nelson Secretario, Vikki Secretario (HP)
Independence Day BBQ
Sunday, July 7 th
after the 9:30 service
Church lawn

Ke Akua Youth Bible Study
Sunday, July 7 th
11:00AM - 12:00PM
Youth Room

Daughters of the King
Thursday, July 11 th
7:00 - 8:00PM
Memorial Hall
Adult Bible Study on Weekly Gospel
Every Sunday, 9:00 - 9:30AM
Under the big tree

Sunday School
Every Sunday, 9:30 - 10:15AM
Memorial Hall

Aloha Hour
Every Sunday, 10:45AM - 12:00PM
Under the big tree

Monday Crew
Every Monday, 8:00AM
Church Office
Laundry Love
1 st & 3 rd Wednesday, 5:00PM
Kapa`a Laundromat

McMaster Slack Key Guitar and Ukulele Concert
Every Wednesday, 6:00PM

Choir Practice
Every Thursday, 6:00PM
Choir Room

Daughters of the King
2 nd & 4 th Thursday, 7:00 - 8:00PM
Memorial Hall

The Staff of your Epistle will be off-island for a few days next week and unable to publish a full issue. Instead, we will bring you an abbreviated issue with service details and upcoming events. If you have any story ideas, please submit them to news@allsaintskauai.org and we will publish them on July 19 th .
Please Join Us This Sunday
July 7 th
Yes - July 4 th  has come and gone. Can you believe it? We'll soon be thinking about Thanksgiving and Christmas! But, for the moment, let's concentrate on celebrating Independence Day.

Just a reminder that our Independence Day BBQ will take place on Sunday, July 7 th after the 9:30AM service. This is a great opportunity to celebrate the Holiday with your church family. 

The Hospitality Ministry will sponsor the BBQ and will provide:
  • Hamburgers, veggieburgers and buns
  • Sausages, hot dogs and buns
  • Chicken drumsticks and thighs
  • Grilled fruit
  • Potato salad
  • Salad fixings (lettuce, tomatoes, onions)
  • Watermelon
  • Pie and ice cream
  • Coffee, juice,
  • Root beer floats.
  • Sodas
  • Other beverages suitable for our adult congregants!
As usual  donations of all types are graciously - and gratefully - accepted!
If you would like to  make a donation  toward the cost of the BBQ, provide anything listed above, or bring something else along (your favorite July 4 th dish, beverage or whatever) please contact David Murray .

For the Hospitality Ministry
David Murray

Communications Contractor
The Episcopal Diocese of Hawai`i
[June 1, 2019, Kapa`a, HI] When Ron and Carolyn Morinishi agreed to serve on a Strategic Plan Design Team in 2018, little did they know the impact that decision would eventually have in a small community on Kaua`i and fellow Episcopalians.

In an article that appeared in the August-October 2018 E-Chronicle  (Kaua`i Parish News), the Morinishi's had begun work to implement an idea on Kaua`i, developed through the One `Ohana Design Team. The team was formed as part of the Strategic Plan that was unveiled at the 2017 Annual Meeting of Convention, and they were tasked with coming up with ideas to bring congregations together. One of the ideas they came up with involved doing service together, and they reached out to the Episcopal Churches on Kaua`i to help with a Habitat for Humanity project in Ele`ele. With positive feedback from several churches, "One 'Ohana" kicked off on August 11, 2018.

At their first gathering, members from All Saints' Kapa`a, the Episcopal Church on West Kaua`i (St. John's and St. Paul's), and St. Michael's and All Angels Lihue, joined forces to work on the 17 homes being built in the small Ele`ele neighborhood through Habitat for Humanity. Since then, One `Ohana has returned every month providing manpower, sometimes meals, but more importantly, developing a bond between the families that would live in those homes, and fellow Episcopalians from other churches. 

At the Annual Meeting of Convention in October 2018, the One `Ohana Design Team presented their implementation plans along with a video of the work they had started on Kaua`i with Habitat for Humanity. (The video can be viewed on HERE . ) 

On May 17, 2019, nine months after One `Ohana joined the Habitat family, the "keys of ownership" were presented to the 17 new homeowners in a ceremony attended by Mayor Derek Kawakami and representatives from the office of Governor Ige and Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (pictured at top). 
With the success at Ele`ele, the Habitat board announced that they would be doubling their efforts for 2019, with a target of completing 35 homes!

The One `Ohana team was the only volunteer group to receive recognition from the Habitat board with a picture signed by all 17 homeowners.  
"We are looking forward to an even more fruitful 2019, and hope to see many more Episcopalians joining our team!" shared Ron.  

The Morinishi's are retired and spend their time between home bases in California and Hawai`i. When on Kaua`i, they attend All Saints' Episcopal Church in Kapa`a.

Pictured at right are the Morinishi's along with Carolyn's mother, holding the signed and framed photo. Also pictured are Fay Hanaoka, Beth Charleton, David Crocker and the Rev. David Englund.
Summer Schedule and Guest Artist
InChoiring Minds is a periodic feature in your Epistle focused on the Music Ministry at All Saints'.

It’s summer once again, and that means our Music Director, Hank Curtis, will be taking leave and the All Saints’ choir will be in recess during the month of July. Choir practice will resume on August 1, in preparation for the Sunday service on August 4.
During Hank’s absence, we are very pleased and privileged to have Chanterelle Chantara replacing Hank at the piano during the 9:30 services. Chanterelle is a classically trained pianist. She has a Kilauea teaching studio and plays for churches, weddings, and events. Chanterelle is also a fashion designer. Her Kaua`i made clothing line, Chanterelle Couture, is sold through island boutiques and on line. She will be opening her own Kilauea boutique in the fall. All Saints’ extends a warm aloha to Chanterelle. Thank you for being here.
The All Saints’ choir also extends a warm welcome to those who would like to sing with the choir — and that includes new members, amateur and professional — as well as visitors. If anyone is visiting Kaua`i and looking for something unique to do during you stay, consider singing with the choir — we would love to have you join us. Make this number 102 on the list of “101 Things to Do on Kaua`i.”

If anyone would like to “in-choir” about the All Saints’ choir, please contact Hank Curtis , our Music Director. Practice occurs each Thursday at 6:00PM, in the Music Room (south entrance of the All Saints’ Gym). Sunday call times are generally 8:45AM.

Blessings from the All Saints' Music Ministry 
William H. Brown
Invite Welcome Connect is a transformational ministry that equips and empowers clergy and lay leaders to cultivate intentional practices of evangelism, hospitality, and belonging rooted in the Gospel imperative to "Go and make disciples of all nations" (Matthew 28:19). It is a ministry of relational evangelism and congregational empowerment allowing churches to become places of genuine connection for inviting the faith journeys and stories of everyone, enabling deeper journeys of Christian discipleship, and enabling the Spirit of Christ to be at the heart of each church's hospitable mission of spreading the Good News. 

Invite Welcome Connect was born out of Mary Parmer’s 10-year experience as Director of Evangelism & Adult Ministries at St. Stephen’s Episcopal Church in Beaumont, Texas, where she began creating and developing a newcomer ministry. This initial framework, entitled “Sacred Connection” and then “Invitation, Welcome, Connection” was piloted in 2010 in four Episcopal Diocese of Texas congregations through the Newcomer Ministry Project. 
Invite Welcome Connect has circulated throughout the Episcopal Church and, to date, has been presented in conference formats in 50 dioceses, three Episcopal seminaries, and in three universities. Invite Welcome Connect has also been presented among the Convocation of Episcopal Churches in Europe and to the Anglican Church in Canada.

Visit invitewelcomeconnect.sewanee.edu for more information, check lists, resources, and videos from the Invite Welcome Connect ministry.

See what Presiding Bishop Curry has to say about Invite Welcome Connect by clicking on the video link below.
All Saint’s is pleased to host the first-ever Invite Welcome Connect Workshop on Kaua`i. The Workshop will be Saturday August 31 st at the Hilton Garden Inn in Kapa`a.

The Workshop runs from 9:00AM - 4:00PM with registration at 8:30AM. Lunch is included.

There is no cost to attend but you must register by August 21 st .

All Members of the All Saints’ `Ohana, especially Members of the Ministry Council, are encouraged to participate.

Once an on-line registration system is enabled, the link will be published in your Epistle . Stay tuned.

I hope you can join us!

Mary Margaret Smith

At the beginning of June, the Search Committee presented their 1 st draft of the Parish Profile to the Vestry for review. The Vestry replied with their comments and suggestions and the Search Committee began to create a 2 nd draft profile thereafter and have presented it to Vestry for their review.

We are also currently working with Bill Caldwell to help by providing photographs that will help to enhance and visibly depict our All Saints' `Ohana.

The Vestry and the Office of the Bishop will need to approve the profile before we publish it. Once this is done, the Parish Profile will be made available to all of you.

We thank you, our All Saints' `Ohana, for your trust and patience and we ask that you continue to pray for us at this time, most especially for Unity, Spiritual Strength, Wisdom, and Endurance as we hope to complete a Final Profile.

If you have any questions or comments for the Search Committee, please contact them by clicking HERE .

Below is a Prayer that Christ Church in Needham, MA said for their Search Committee and we kindly ask that you do the same for us.

Good and Gracious God, we come before you in a time of transition as we seek a new rector for All Saints'. Jesus taught us to "seek first the Kingdom of God" and we need your grace to place the wishes and desires of our congregation in Your hands. Help us to navigate the process in a spirit of hope, knowing that the Holy Spirit is ever present to guide and lead us in Your most holy will. God, send your blessings on our Search Committee as they work to find a pastor who will lead us, tend to us, and challenge us to be the best people we can be. When the journey seems long and our faith runs low, help us to remember that You walk with us always. Help us to be open to the stirrings of the Spirit and trust that all things will work out for our good. We ask this in the name of Your Son, our Savior, Jesus Christ. Amen

The Search Committee

All Saints’ Search Committee

  • Linda Crocker
  • Collin Darrell 
  • Victor Punua Jr. 
  • Diane Sato
  • Vikki Secretario
  • Curtis Shiramizu
  • Dianne Tabura
Our own Joan Roughgarden marched with the Democratic Party Caucus in Kaua`i’s very first Pride Parade on June 22 nd . Joan managed to find the time to pull out her camera and record the event. Her photos show the remarkable display of color and family fun she found during the celebration. 

Mahalo nui loa to Joan for sharing her images with us.
For Removing a Potential Hazard on All Saints' Campus
A special mahalo goes to Morgan Baldovino this week for pulling out the concrete footings in the side yard of the rectory. These footings were poured several years ago, as part of a privately funded project to build a lanai on the north side of the rectory. The project was never completed and it became imperative to remove the footings, which posed a safety hazard. No fear, the discarded footings will not be left on the church property; a member of the congregation wants to have the footings moved to her property and we will happily oblige. 

Earlier this year, the piles of lumber that were intended for the lanai construction, but never used, were given to a carpenter, in exchange for his custom construction of several window frames in the rectory. 

Again, mahalo nui loa Morgan for volunteering to undertake this important task. 

David Murray for Buildings and Grounds
Sloggett Fund and Volunteers Supports Construction
In May of this year, Christ Memorial Church in Kilauea received a grant through the Sloggett Fund to build a labyrinth. The Rev. Gae Chalker was thrilled at the prospect of offering members and visitors an opportunity to experience the deep meditative peace of walking the labyrinth. Under the guidance of Bob Vlach, known as the "Labyrinth Guy" members (and visitors) laid exactly 800 bricks into the trenched design to complete the labyrinth. On June 29 th , a Peace Pole was erected in the center, bearing the words "May Peace Prevail on Earth" in 8 languages, that are connected to those buried on property.
On-Schedule for Installation in November!
Work toward the completion of the new All Saints’ pipe organ has made great progress in the workshop of master organ builder, Manuel Rosales, in California. Work on the façade of this magnificent instrument is continuing with the painting and gilding of the tops of the towers in the All Saints’ sanctuary. Mahalo nui loa to Morris Wise for the pictorial update of the progress in CA and Kapa`a.

Thoughts on Flags and Patriotic Songs in Church
As we approach the 4 th of July, let me share again my “Ask the Bishop” reflection from the June 2017 E-Chronicle (see http://conta.cc/2sUIyjt ). 
I have recently been asked about my opinion regarding flags (specifically the flags of the United States and of the Episcopal Church) in a church. While there are no canons or rubrics regarding such things, I personally do not think either a flag of a civil authority (United States or Hawaiʻi) or a denominational flag (Episcopal Church) should be placed in the chancel (this is sometimes also the choir area in front of the altar) leading to the sanctuary with the altar. I think it important that there be no symbols around the altar except sacred ones (cross, crucifix, icon, banners, etc.). In a paraphrase of the language of the Book of Common Prayer (see the Proper Preface for Baptism, page 381): Because in Jesus Christ our Lord the Creator of heaven and earth has received us as sons and daughters, made us citizens of God's kingdom, and given us the Holy Spirit to guide us into all truth. Accidents of history make us the citizens of a particular "nation" (and nations come and go through history) and the brokenness of humanity make us the members of a Christian denomination. The realm of God knows no nation and no denomination. Ideally, therefore, I would suggest that such flags are best kept out of the direct sightlines of the altar (and ideally of the pulpit/lectern and baptismal font as well). 
On the other hand, flags to the side of the nave, in the far aisles or hanging overhead (but away from the sanctuary/altar) might be appropriate. This is particularly true of memorials to those who have died in wars or as a celebration of the cultural heritage of a congregation. Good Shepherd, Wailuku, for example, has the flags of the nations of origin of all its parishioners hanging from the rafters. 

With Memorial Day just past and the Fourth of July coming, I have also been asked about singing "nationalistic" hymns during worship on Sundays. I suggest that the "National Songs" section of  The Hymnal 1982  (Hymns 716-720) are prayerful and provide an aspirational impulse to a Christian's civic responsibility. I think we must look at the words of hymns very carefully. So, for example, the "National Anthem" (Hymn 720) might be sung on occasion (certainly not often), but it is important to sing the second verse in which there is a desire to prevent "war's desolation" and an acknowledgement that the nation's cause must be "just." Such hymns might be balanced with hymns like "Lift Every Voice" (Hymn 599) or the "Social Justice" section of the hymnal  Lift Every Voice and Sing II  (see LEVAS II, Hymns 225-229). Hymns are socially and historically conditioned. Notes in the bulletin and/or comments by the preacher can help such hymns have meaning in our own time and beyond their popular use.

Lord God Almighty, in whose Name the founders of this country won liberty for themselves and for us, and lit the torch of freedom for nations then unborn: Grant that we and all the people of this land may have grace to maintain our liberties in righteousness and peace; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen. 

[The Collect for Independence Day (July 4), BCP page 242] 
The Right Reverend Robert L. Fitzpatrick
Bishop Diocesan 
The Episcopal Diocese of Hawai’i

“With myself I started” – a view on waste from the Middle East

31 May 2019
“Our world has a problem with waste – and it’s hitting people living in poverty the hardest. Today, two billion people in the world’s poorest countries are living and working among piles of waste – that’s one in four of us. Drinking polluted water. Breathing toxic air. Battling sickness. Each day waste mountains are growing causing preventable deaths.” So writes Renew our World as they launch their latest campaign tackling waste.

The Anglican Alliance is a founding member of Renew Our World and is mandated to connect and equip Anglicans across the Communion to safeguard the integrity of creation, the fifth Anglican mark of mission. In a short series of stories to coincide with the launch of Renew Our World’s campaign, we are focusing on the problem of waste in different parts of the world, as seen through the eyes of people who live there. This second piece is written by Joel Kelling, the Anglican Alliance’s Middle East Facilitator, who lives in Jordan.
The National 'Bird'

“Have you seen the national bird?*” my friend asked me, on one of my first visits to Jordan. I didn’t know what he meant, so he went on: “I’m sure you have – flying over the fields and the cities, in the north and the south”. He was referring to the ubiquitous plastic bag, typically home to a falafel sandwich for a few minutes at most and then dropped on the floor, occasionally into a bin. 3,000,000,000 (three billion) plastic bags are used in Jordan every year.

In Jordan’s capital city, Amman, 4,300 municipal sweepers and cleaners, and 250 vehicles, collect 4,000 tonnes of waste on average each day, a number which rises to 4,600 tonnes during holidays and Ramadan. 70% of it is plastic.
Street waste in Amman. Image: Joel Kelling

Part of the problem in Jordan is that not all waste makes it to the municipal bins – there is a culture of dropping coffee cups, cigarette butts, and plastic bags on the ground following their use. Even in churches, disposable cups and plates are the norm, when a practice of washing up would promote fellowship and friendship, as well as being a more sustainable solution. I’ve been told by Christians, in response to me bringing my recycling to work (which is on the way to one of just two recycling centres in this city of 4 million people), that “we don’t do that here”, and looked at like I’m weird!

Things are beginning to change however, and there are small signs of hope. I was recently invited to an environment day held at The Anglican Ahliyyah School for Girls. Various youth-led programmes were championed, including the work of the student Eco-Council. They have a recycling scheme which exchanges plastic bottle tops for wheelchairs; are committed to zero waste within the school by 2022; and take their work home to their families, and share their learning with other schools in the city.

One of the participants at the environment day was Amal Madanat, whose film “With myself I started” is an inspirational look at how we can begin to make a difference through our own actions. Working with the nearest school to her home, she has transformed approaches to waste, encouraging the refusal of single-use plastics, and the sorting and recycling of waste. Amal has partnered in this exercise with local waste pickers, who she describes as Jordan’s “invisible recycling experts”. These people earn up to 3-4JOD ($5-6) per day combing through filthy bins to find re-sellable materials. The film gives so much dignity to these people who might be considered unclean by society, if they are noticed at all. Now they are participating in the life of the school and community, working together for a cleaner city.
Recycling facilities at the Anglican Ahliyyah School for Girls. Image: Joel Kelling

I hope that during the Season of Creation this September, we can work together to show the film in other schools, institutions and the parishes of the diocese and inspire a personal and corporate lifestyle change, working together for the sake of God’s creation. In the meantime, the challenge for me is to continue to model a different way of living, be that in our use of reusable nappies for our son, drinking from my reusable water bottle, or refusing plastic bags in our local shop.

*The actual national bird of Jordan is the Sinai Rose Finch.

The Anglican Alliance connects and equips the worldwide Anglican family to work for a world free of poverty and injustice and to safeguard creation.

Take action by getting involved in Renew Our World’s waste campaign: details here .

And see our prayer and worship resources on creation care here.
© The Anglican Alliance 2019. All rights reserved.
"Take Me To Your Leader!"
"Who's That?"
Recently, I was engaged in a lively discussion of the Episcopal Church and its Leadership. You know the conversation. 

“Did you hear what they are going to do?”
“Don’t worry about them . I think they are doing fine.”
“Yah well, they don’t get it.”
“Do you ever talk to them ?”
“Who are they ?”

This last question really got me thinking. Who are “ They ”?
This week I would like to return to our discussion of Diocesan Governance. Now that we have a feeling for how the national church is governed, it should be easier to understand the fine points of governance at the level of the Diocese. As we noted before, Bishops serve as chief pastors of the church, exercising a ministry of oversight and supervision. Diocesan bishops hold jurisdiction in their dioceses, with particular responsibility for the doctrine, discipline, and worship of the church.

In addition to the bishop, our Diocese has three governing bodies. We learned about the first of these, Diocesan Convention, a few weeks ago. This week we will look more closely at Diocesan Convention as a governance body and introduce the other two bodies, Diocesan Council and Standing Committee.
Diocesan Convention

The Diocesan Convention is a body composed of all clergy who are canonically resident in the Diocese and elected delegates from each congregation. The number of delegates is based on the number of confirmed communicants in good standing in the congregation. The Diocesan Convention meets once each year, in October, to conduct the business of the Diocese. The Diocesan Council is the legislative body when the Convention is in recess.

Additional information is available by viewing the " Diocesan Convention " page.

Diocesan Council

Exercises the power of the Convention and performs planning and policy making between meetings of Convention. Oversees the policies, programs, mission, and budget of the Diocese and may initiate new work. Also is the legal corporate body of the Episcopal Church in Hawai‘i and, as such, is responsible for the business and property of the Church. 

Additional information is available on the " Diocesan Council " page.

Standing Committee

Serves as the Bishop’s Council of Advice. Performs duties as specified by the General and Diocesan Convention, and the Constitution and Canons of the Episcopal Church and the Diocese of Hawai‘i. Serves as the Ecclesiastical authority when there is no bishop. The Standing Committee meets on the third Saturday of each month, (on the morning of Diocesan Council meetings) and, occasionally, on call.

Additional information is available on the " Standing Committee " page.

So, what does all this mean for you?  

Once again, this governance structure gives you an ideal opportunity to get involved. You can run for a position as a Convention Delegate from All Saint's. Each January, during our Annual Parish Meeting, we elect delegates. Please consider running.

Once you are engaged in the Diocesan Convention, seek a seat on the Diocesan Council or Standing Committee. This is e xactly what Nelson Secretario did. He is now a member of the Diocesan Council and also serves on the Commission on Finance and Administration that reports to the Diocesan Council. 
Mahalo Nelson for accepting this responsibility and serving on our behalf.

Hey, if Nelson can do it, so can you!

I hope this information is helpful the next time someone says, “Take me to your leader”. 

If you have any questions about Leadership at our Parish, please feel free to contact Bill Caldwell , David Murray , Mary Margaret Smith , or any member of the Vestry.

Bill Caldwell
The Epistle
Episcopal Church Response to Crisis at the Border

Episcopal Church Office of Public Affairs
Posted Jul 3, 2019
Over the past several weeks, The Episcopal Church has responded to the reports of inhumane conditions for children and other asylum seekers in government custody in a number of ways. This response includes calls for donations and goods from Episcopal dioceses on the border, prayers for those seeking safety, efforts to engage in advocacy, and pastoral messages from bishops around the Church.

“We are children of the one God who is the Creator of us all,” said Presiding Bishop Michael Curry. “It is our sisters, our brothers, our siblings who are seeking protection and asylum, fleeing violence and danger to children, searching for a better life for themselves and their children. The crisis at the border is not simply a challenge of partisan politics but a test of our personal and public morality and human decency.”

The Episcopal Church, through the Office of Government Relations (OGR) and Episcopal Migration Ministries (EMM), has compiled a list of resources, bishop statements, and information in response to the ongoing humanitarian situation at the southern border.

“Reports of poor care for children in Customs and Border Protection (CBP) custody and continued policies to limit access to asylum are extremely concerning to people of faith. We must remember these children are here because they cannot find safety anywhere else,” stated Rebecca Linder Blachly, Director of The Episcopal Church Office of Government Relations. “The U.S. has an established system to process asylum seekers, who are coming to the U.S. legally. The response to asylum seekers who are desperate and afraid should not be deterrence or detention. We have the capability to respond in a humane and compassionate manner, and I am grateful for everyone in The Episcopal Church who is responding to this crisis.”

The list of resources for education and support is available on the EMM website  and will continue to be updated with ways to learn more and take action. The OGR and EMM webinar with Bishop Michael Hunn of the Diocese of Rio Grande will be made available on-demand through this website as well.

“The enormity of the challenge is daunting. It is easy to feel helpless to make a difference. While we cannot do everything, we can do something,” said Curry. “The links to resources of bishops and dioceses on the border, the Office of Government Relations and Episcopal Migration Ministries offer practical suggestions for how we can each and together do something.”

The Office of Government Relations represents the policy priorities of The Episcopal Church to the U.S. government in Washington, D.C. This office aims to shape and influence policy and legislation on critical issues, highlighting the voices and experiences of Episcopalians and Anglicans globally. All of its work is grounded in the resolutions of General Convention and Executive Council, the legislative and governing bodies of the church. Connecting Episcopalians to their faith by educating, equipping and engaging them to do the work of advocacy through the Episcopal Public Policy Network (EPPN) is a key aspect of this work.

Episcopal Migration Ministries is a ministry of The Episcopal Church and is one of nine national agencies responsible for resettling refugees in the United States in partnership with the government. Episcopal Migration Ministries currently has 13 affiliate offices in 12 states. To directly support EMM and its life-changing work, visit www.episcopalmigrationministries.org/give or text ‘EMM’ to 41444 (standard messaging and data may rates apply).
Women are joining the House of Bishops at unprecedented rate

Hard work, the Holy Spirit and larger culture’s influence are seen as the motivators

By Mary Frances Schjonberg
Posted Jul 1, 2019
All the women bishops and bishops-elect who had received the church’s consent to their ordination and consecration who attended the March 12-15 House of Bishops meeting at Kanuga Conference and Retreat Center in Hendersonville, North Carolina, pose for a group photo. Since that meeting, three more women have been elected to the episcopate. Photo: Mary Frances Schjonberg/Episcopal News Service

[Episcopal News Service] The first day of June was a historic, if somewhat distracting, day in the life of The Episcopal Church.

While the Rev. Kathryn McCrossen Ryan was being ordained and consecrated as a bishop suffragan in the Diocese of Texas, many people in attendance were surreptitiously checking on the outcomes of two bishop elections happening that day. In both cases, laity and clergy elected women: the Rev. Bonnie Perry in the Diocese of Michigan and the Rev. Lucinda Ashby in the Diocese of El Camino Real .

Perry and Ashby are the seventh and eighth bishops elected in The Episcopal Church this year, and the fifth and sixth women, the most ever elected in one year in the church’s history.

“What a day for the church; what a day for women,” recalled Bishop Todd Ousley, the head of church’s Office of Pastoral Development who shepherds diocesan bishop searches. He admitted he was one of those people checking his phone.

Thus far in 2019, in addition to the six women elected as diocesan or suffragan bishops, Episcopalians in two dioceses have elected men to be their diocesan bishops. Four of those eight bishops-elect, all women, identify as people of color. At least one more woman will be elected bishop this year, on July 26, when the Diocese of Montana chooses from a slate of three women .
The Rev. Frank Logue, Diocese of Georgia canon to the ordinary, used data from a variety of sources for this graph.

Many observers credit the recent increase in the number of women elected as bishops to a confluence of societal and ecclesiastical trends, as well as years of active encouragement of women to consider an episcopal vocation. And, they all credit the persistence of the Holy Spirit.

– The Rev. Mary Frances Schjonberg is the Episcopal News Service’s senior editor and reporter.

Excerpted from The Episcopal News Service. To read the entire story, please click here .
A Litany for the United States on Independence Day
Posted July 4, 2019
Creative and merciful God, protect this great nation from the diabolic forces that hinder our love of you and one another. Aid us in our growth into the new consciousness that a global awareness must bring.
Many of us are the offspring of immigrants who fled their countries of origin because of persecution or economic hardship. May we come to understand and deal mercifully with your people who come to our borders today seeking asylum and better life circumstances. Help us to move beyond the tendency to dehumanize them. Instead guide us into the difficult and painful understanding that demands we find a place for them and aid them.
Many of us are the offspring of slaves. Many have slave owners as forebears. We struggle still in the divisiveness of racism. Help those of us who do not usually think about issues of race to be aware of our privilege and to use it for the good of all. Comfort and aid those of us who deal with racial discrimination daily. Help us all to grow in the knowledge of how these issues cripple us, and to dialogue across divides.
Many of us are gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, or queer. Help those of us who struggle with issues of gender identity and sexuality to discover that you created each of us as we are on purpose. Help us to understand that you long for the creative expression of our unique natures. Help us all to accept one another in the colorful diversity that is your dream for humanity.
We know and serve you through myriad processes. Each religion this nation harbors brings its own understanding of you, and together we share a picture that is more complete than any individual faith can provide. And yet we are each drawn into relationship with you through the particular spiritual practices to which you have led us. Help us to accept the diverse paths that each of us has chosen. At the same time, help us grow and deepen in our own understanding of you through the Way that you have shown us.
Our nation encompasses hundreds of ecosystems, each unique and beautiful. As the global climate changes, many species of plants and animals are lost to us forever. As the human population increases, many of our wild places are severely compromised. Help us to learn about and protect the land you have given us in stewardship. Help us to be humble in our understanding so that all beings might thrive.
May we continue to live as pioneers. Help us to push the boundaries that separate us. Help us explore the territory that exists between us. Help us move beyond our fear into new understandings of what it means to dwell together as one nation under God. Help us to live into the dream of real freedom for all.
In Christ’s name, we pray. Amen.
A ‘Trek’ Toward the Kingdom of God

By Colin D. Halloran
Posted Jul 2, 2019
The 2019 Trek group after three hours of spelunking in Worley’s Cave, Tennessee. Photo: Greydon of Rock Dimensions, Boone, North Carolina

[St. Andrew’s On-the-Sound – Wilmington, North Carolina] For the week of June 17, the Rev. Sarah K. Smith, St. Andrew’s On-the-Sound ’s assistant rector, wasn’t in her office at the Wilmington, North Carolina, church. In fact, for most of the week, she wasn’t even within cell phone range. No, rather than leading her congregation in daily morning prayer or the weekly healing service as she normally would, Smith was in different woods every morning, leading reflections with a disparate group of teenagers from congregations around the state.

For the third year, Smith and co-leader Daniel Sockwell accompanied young people from around North Carolina on Trek, an opportunity to engage with God in new and unique settings while strengthening bonds with individuals from different communities. This year’s experiential formation brought together diverse youths from church communities in Wilmington, Winston-Salem and New Bern for a week of tent camping, community outdoor meal preparations, and adventure activities such as canoeing, rock climbing, caving, whitewater rafting and zip lining.

This year was different than years past, as there were no representatives from Smith’s own church and a broader range of ages, with middle schoolers joining the typical high school participants.

“I had no idea what to expect from the kids,” said Smith, meeting most of the participants for the first time on the first night of the trip. “I’m excited about the energy from our youngest ones!”

The kids were in for new experiences as well. As they were driving to Table Rock, one of the Wilmington boys asked why his ears felt funny. He’d never needed to pop them before. It was in that moment that Smith realized just how new and different this experience might be for this year’s group. Beyond the standard new experiences of rock climbing or whitewater rafting, this year’s Trek, with a significant majority of the participants there through scholarships offered by various congregations, was an opportunity for these youths to get out of the only environments they’ve ever known. It also was an opportunity for suburban Episcopal youths to interact with young people from a rural Spanish-speaking Presbyterian congregation and from two African Methodist Episcopal Zion Church congregations based in Wilmington.

“I act more like myself when I’m not around people I know,” said Zion Moore, one of the boys from a Wilmington church. Sindy Santana, a member of the Spanish-speaking congregation, added, “I learned that I can be a nice person.” When pressed on what they meant by those comments, both explained that Trek had become an opportunity to explore themselves outside the often-fraught environments of their “normal” lives. It’s no surprise such insights were reached, as this year’s Trek theme – reflected in Scripture readings and journaling prompts – was stories: what stories we tell about ourselves to ourselves, what stories we allow others to tell about us, and what we hear if we listen for God’s story about us.

Trek leaders participated in daily journaling and reflections as well. In response to the daily prompt, “Where did you experience God today?” co-leader Sockwell reflected, “On the river, our guide told us they’re trying to get the Nolichucky designated ‘wild and scenic,’ which means it won’t ever be developed, it’ll always be the beautiful creation God made.”

This led the group to a discussion of the Genesis story and what it means to be stewards of creation. Together, the Trek group came to the realization that if all are made in God’s image, then they become closer to God by becoming closer to each other. In getting to know each other in such a richly diverse group, one that is truly reflective of the Kingdom of God, every single person who spent that rainy week on Trek was able to know God more fully, know God’s story more fully, and better understand the stories they are in the act of creating.

“If you’re scared, you should know that God has your back, like when I was rock climbing,” said participant Tyshaun James. “If I’m scared, I just have to build a little self-confidence.” Listening to God’s story in order to reshape their stories of themselves – that’s what this year’s Trek was all about.

If your congregation would be interested in sponsoring a Trek for your community or for further conversation about the joy of adventure catechesis, contact sarah@saots.org .

– Colin D. Halloran is a Wilmington poet and author who attends St. Andrew’s.

School Supplies
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Sunday School Holiday

In the immortal words of Alice Cooper, " School's Out For Summer! " Sunday School summer break begins this Sunday, June 30 th . Sunday School will resume this fall.
IN BRIEF . . .
These news briefs were featured in previous issues of "The Epistle"

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