Registration Open: Mission to Pine Ridge July 7-15, 2017

The Pine Ridge Indian Reservation is an Oglala Sioux Native American reservation located in South Dakota. Originally included within the territory of the Great Sioux Reservation, Pine Ridge was established in 1889 in the southwest corner of South Dakota on the Nebraska border. The population of Pine Ridge suffers health conditions commonly found in Third World countries, including high mortality rates, depression, alcoholism, drug abuse, malnutrition and diabetes, among others. Reservation access to health care is limited compared to urban areas, and it is not sufficient. Unemployment on the reservation hovers between 80% and 85%, and 49% of the population live below the federal poverty level. Many of the families have no electricity, telephone, running water, or sewage systems; and many use wood stoves to heat their homes, depleting limited wood resources. 

EDWM mission trips to Pine Ridge, South Dakota often involve building bunkbeds and outhouses for the residents.

Our mission work is done in partnership with Re-Member, an organization that in addition to
 helping raise awareness of conditions on the reservation, to feed, clothe, shelter and heal those who are marginalized by society, they help us to learn about and to respect indigenous culture and spirituality.

We are seeking 11 volunteers to travel to South Dakota starting July 7th. July 15th is our day to travel home. The diocese will reimburse $80/night for hotels during travel time. A $200 non-refundable deposit is required  to be paid to reserve a spot on all out-of-state mission trips, per Bishop Hougland and the Board of Missions. If you need a scholarship to help with the cost of the deposit, please e-mail Cindy Nawrocki

Click here to register/pay deposit.

Questions? Email the trip director Carol Abbot at

Consider Saugatuck for your Vestry Retreat

The All Saints' Retreat House in Saugatuck would be delighted to welcome parish groups and Vestry Retreats to use our facilities.  There are a number of vacant days between now and Memorial Day, and we are already taking some reservations for the latter part of the year.

The Retreat House can sleep 11 guests,  and is fully furnished.  There are several rooms where groups can meet, or divide into break-out groups.  The kitchen and dining room provide ample opportunities for shared meetings. Or, we are just three blocks from a variety of restaurants.

For more information or to make a reservations, please contact Fr Corwin Stoppel  at either  or  at 616) 886 8007.

The Episcopal Network for Stewardship (TENS) Announces 2017 Conference and Workshops

The Episcopal Network for Stewardship's annual conference will be in beautiful downtown Minneapolis at St. Mark's Cathedral he third weekend in May 19-20, 2017. The theme of the conference is Journey to Generosity.

Conference attendees will be challenged and inspired by three outstanding keynote speakers: The Rev. Cn. J Edwin Bacon, The Rev. Winnie Varghese, and Mr. Dave Toycen.

Eight workshops will be offered at the conference.  The workshops are being led by bishops and other leaders in the field of generosity and stewardship.  Each workshop will be presented twice during the two day conference so attendees will be able to attend four different workshops in addition to the Eucharist, three empowering keynote addresses and multiple networking opportunities.

For more information:
The Great Vigil of Easter, Confirmation, Reception and Reaffirmation

Confirmation, reception and reaffirmation will be held on Saturday, April 15, 2017 at 5:30 p.m. at St. Andrew's Episcopal Church, Grand Rapids, MI ( click here for map). Rehearsal begins at 4:30.
A reception will follow. If you have questions about the service, they may be directed to parish administrator at

Candidates must be registered by administrative staff of the parish or clergy. Parish administrators & Clergy, click here to register.

Additional 2017 Confirmation Dates
June 3, 2017 - The Eve of Pentecost, St. Philip's Episcopal Church, Beulah ( click here for map).
November 4, 2017 - Convention Eucharist and the Eve of All Saints Sunday, downtown Kalamazoo.

For more information on confirmation, reception and reaffirmation, go to our Confirmation page. There you will find diocesan-approved curriculum for preparation.
Reminder and Updates on Safeguarding
From Gennie Callard, Bishop's Assistant for Children, Youth and Young Adult Ministries (and Safeguarding Coordinator)

  Safeguarding Basics
Safeguarding Classes Offered: Safeguarding God's Children and Safeguarding God's People
How is it offered through the diocese*? Online
Sign up: In order to take them online, the participant must apply to receive an individual log-in and password. Click here to apply. You should receive a welcome letter with instructions in two weeks or less.
*People may also still take Safeguarding God's Children in person (with the certified trainers), though most prefer the convenience of taking it at home and online. The amount of time is approximately the same, but the online course is split up into 20-30 minute sections that they can take whenever they want.

Who is expected to take both Safeguarding God's Children and Safeguarding God's People?
  • Vestry members
  • Paid employees  (or volunteers working in a typically paid capacity)
  • Licensed church ministers  (Eucharistic ministers, visitors, etc.)
  • All Clergy  (volunteering, licensed, paid, full-time, part-time, etc.)
Who is expected to take Safeguarding God's Children only?
All people who work with children or youth  in the parish or a parish activity.  Please remember your Vacation Bible School teachers and people going on mission trips.

Questions? Contact Gennie Callard at or (269) 381-2710, ext. 13.
Invitation to Sudanese Grace English Language Worship Service, Fundraiser

The congregation of Sudanese Grace Episcopal Church sends greetings to you all in the name of our Almighty God, our brothers and sisters as we begin the forty days of Lent. It is that time in Christian movement to keep our minds and self in God's Kingdom.

The people of Sudanese Grace i nvite friends into fellowship as they celebrate the Eucharist in English and offer authentic  Sudanese  dishes for donations on Sunday, April 23, 2017 at Mayflower Congregational Church ( click here for map ).

The fundraiser starts at 11:30 a.m. and goes until 3:00 p.m. Holy Eucharist begins at 1:00 p.m. 

All are welcome. Children are an integral part of the faith community at  Sudanese  Grace, so this is an event at which children are welcomed and embraced. 

Traditional South  Sudanese dishes like akop, atulmokic, anjera and more will be available. This food will be available to take home, and donations are accepted. This is a fundraiser for  Sudanese  Grace, and helps to support the mission and ministry of the growing congregation. Suggested donation is $10 per plate. You may bring your own plate but it is not required. 

Contact the Rev. Zachariah Char at if you have questions about the food sale or  Sudanese Grace. Additional donations may be sent to the  diocesan office with a note saying it is intended for  Sudanese  Grace

We hope you can participate!

Examining Our Own Racism Training in Traverse City

Examining Our Own Racism, the required training for parish and diocesan leadership, will hold a training in Traverse City on Saturday, April 29, 2017, 9:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. at Grace Episcopal Church ( click here for map) lunch provided. This training fulfills Episcopal healing racism training requirement required by parish leaders. Cost is $20.

This workshop examines how and why racism persists in spite of the legal changes and integration that have happened in the last 50 years. Racism and other forms of discrimination have become less recognizable, embedded both in the structure of our society and in our unconscious biases. During the workshop we examine our own biases and role in the maintenance of a system of advantages and disadvantages based on racial and ethnic identities. Come prepared to engage in a dialogue with your fellow participants!

The workshop is led by Dr. Ulana Klymyshyn and Dr. Cedric Taylor. Dr. Klymyshyn teaches "Racism and discrimination in America through dialogue" at Central Michigan University. She directed the Office of Diversity Education there from 1986 to 2012; part of her duties included developing and facilitating diversity training mainly for staff and faculty.

Dr. Cedric Taylor is an assistant professor at Central Michigan University, where he teaches "Racism and Inequality" in the departments of Sociology, anthropology and social work. Dr. Taylor is also exploring using art and video to teach about social problems.

Questions about the training? Contact the Rev. Susan York at

Episcopal Migration Ministries Asks For Support

Episcopal Migration Ministries, and many other organizations which help refugees obtain
housing, jobs, and social services, receive the bulk of their funding from federal grants that are tied to the numbers of refugees we serve. Without this funding, which will most certainly be dramatically reduced if not eliminated this year, EMM will be forced to significantly limit or suspend its core operations, including work that is ongoing through partner agencies to assist refugees already resettled in the United States and elsewhere. Without our infrastructure of ministry provided by a national network of professionals and volunteers, we run the risk of resettling refugees into poverty and turmoil once the period of program suspension ends.

Our ability to continue this life-saving work is in danger. We need your help! We are reaching out with this special request: please make a donation today to EMM, of any size as you are able, to get us through this difficult time. 

Learn more about the work of Episcopal  Migration Ministries.