February 10, 2021
In this edition: Dust to Dust: Thoughts on Ash Wednesday; New online this week; Bishop's Lenten Book Study; Sermon by the Rev. Sarah Nelson; Covid Vaccine Update; Black History Month Concerts and 2021 Racial and Social Equity Challenge; Fun Fact; Did You Know?; Check it Out!; news from our parishes and community; and more ...
Dust to dust: Some thoughts on Ash Wednesday in 2021
by Emily Bange
“Remember that thou art but dust, and to dust thou shalt return.”
"Whatever your thoughts are on Ash Wednesday, Lent, or Easter, there is something hauntingly honest and sobering about these words. They call us to pause. They stop us in our tracks and remind us of the blip that our lives are on the timeline of eternity. They also remind us of our connection to the rest of creation; we are made of the same chemical compounds as the earth, the fish of the sea, the birds of the air, and the beast of the field. We are human because the Creator breathed the Spirit, the breath of life, into our lungs."

Read more of this article by Emily Bange here. [Confirmed at St. Thomas's Parish, Newark, Emily will become a student at Union Theological Seminary in fall 2021.]
New online this week
St. David's, Wilmington has a new website. Check it out here.
At this time when a church's website acts as its welcoming narthex, websites have taken on an even greater importance. Please let us know of any enhancements to your church's website. We'd love to share them and spread the word!
A new page on the diocesan website offers Social Ministry resources under the headings of Food, Housing, Health, and Financial. At a time when so many are in need, this gives links to diverse resources available across the state. Please let us know of other resources that could be of help.
"Christian Empathy"
A sermon by
The Rev. Sarah Nelson

delivered at St. James, Newport
on Sunday, February 7, 2021
Bishop's Annual
Lenten Book Study
with Compline
Sundays, February 21 - March 28
6:30pm - 8:00pm
In Celebration of Black History Month
Two Concerts

Organ Concert Celebrating Black History Month, streamed from St. Anne's, Middletown, Friday, February 26, 7pm
Everyone is invited to attend this virtual concert. Guest musician R. Monty Bennett will play music of the Western Classical Tradition, Organ Music based on Spirituals & Hymns, then finish with Contemporary Organ Music from Africa. To view the concert, visit Saint Anne’s website here or Facebook page here.

Stories of Freedom & Justice – A Black History Month Celebration by the Choir School of Delaware, streamed from Grace Church, Wilmington, Sunday, February 28, 4pm
One of Wilmington’s most anticipated annual Black History Month events, the program features poetry from authors of color, including Paul Lawrence Dunbar and Jacob Lawrence, set to music. their stories of freedom and justice. Tickets are $25 and can be purchased at the following:
Event Link here or Facebook Event Link here.
2021 Racial Equity & Social Justice Challenge series
The 2021 Challenge is an evolution of 2020's 21-Day Racial Equity & Social Justice Challenge in which over 8,000 Delawareans participated!

In a monthly journey of self-discovery to help Delawareans build more effective social justice habits, particularly those dealing with issues of race, power, privilege, and leadership, for five consecutive days each month through December, participants are prompted with a daily e-mail challenge such as reading an article, listening to a podcast, or watching a video. Then they are encouraged to reflect on that content and relate the situation to their own lives to build new understandings and connections and begin dismantling systemic racism in Delaware.

More information on how to sign up now for the 2021 Challenge, and check out the 2020 archive for all of last year’s challenge content!
Fun Fact

Question: There have been three African popes. Who were they and where did they come from?

Clue: One of them was the first to speak Latin in the liturgy as Christians in Rome were still using Greek at that time.

Answer: Here
Did you know?
Bill White was the first African- American to broadcast NHL game
Fifty years ago today professional first baseman, Bill White, became the first African American NHL baseball announcer. He called NY Yankee games from 1971-1988. More information
Check it out!
"Baba Yetu" by Christopher Tin is the Lord's Prayer in Swahili
On February 13, 2011, it became the first piece of music composed for a video game to win a Grammy Award, sung here by Alex Boyé and the BYU Men's Chorus. More information
Virtual Lenten programs and resources
Life Transformed - The Way of Love in Lent revised for 2021
Lent and Easter resources for dioceses and congregations available from the Episcopal Church, including: Updated Life Transformed – The Way of Love in Lent curriculum; Sermons That Work for Holy Week and Easter; a new podcast series, Prophetic Voices: Preaching and Teaching Beloved Community. More information In English, Spanish, and French here
Episcopal Migration Ministries
 daily Lenten devotional series
Episcopal Migration Ministries (EMM), in partnership with members of the Episcopal Asylum Ministry Network, is offering a daily Lenten devotional series. Written reflections will be released daily beginning Ash Wednesday, February 17, through Easter Sunday, April 4. Reflections will also be available on the EMM website blog.  More information here
A River Through the Desert -
A Lenten Pilgrimage
Reflections for Lent from St. George’s College, Jerusalem consists of six sessions for groups and individuals exploring the geography of the Holy Land, following Jesus from Galilee to Golgotha. Each session will reflect on the theme with questions for exploration with links to short films from the Holy Land. Register to receive weekly sessions and for queries: resources@sgcjerusalem.org]
Women Worth Knowing - from
Episcopal Women's History Project
The stories of six women who have made an impact on the Episcopal Church, with time for discussion and questions. The Rev. Dr. Jo Ann Barker, President of EWHP will be emcee. The sessions will be presented as a Zoom experience where there is room for all who wish to participate. Ash Wednesday is on February 17, 2021; the series will begin on Thursday, February 18. More information
Tabe Mase, a member of Sts. Andrew & Matthew, administers the COVID vaccine.
The Covid-19 vaccine in Delaware
  • Learn more about when, where, and how to get the COVID-19 vaccine at de.gov/covidvaccine
  • General facts about the Covid-19 vaccine are available here.
  • Key messages and FAQs are available here.
Where can I get the vaccine in Delaware?
The State of Delaware is offering multiple options for people to receive the COVID-19 vaccine. Currently, health care personnel and long-term care residents/staff under Phase 1A, as well as individuals 65 and older and frontline essential workers under Phase 1B are eligible to receive the vaccine either through pharmacies, vaccination events, or medical providers. Learn more about how to register for each of these specific options by clicking the blue links or the DE.gov website here.
Key Information after your Covid-19 vaccination
Go to de.gov/getmyvaccine to find a location for your second dose — but wait until your
second-dose due date approaches, to make sure opportunities are available. Your second
dose doesn’t have to come from the same place as your first. You can find one at a pharmacy
near your home, maybe from your own health care provider, or even from a state-run or
coordinated vaccination event. More information here.
Cycle of Prayer in the Episcopal Church in Delaware
This week (week of February 7), in our diocesan Cycle of Prayer, we hold up in prayer St. Anne's School,
Middletown, Mr. Barry L. Davis, Head of School; and Ms. Kathy Hanna, Chaplain. For the 2020-2021 diocesan Cycle of Prayer Calendar click here.
News from our parishes and community
TONIGHT! Spiritual Wellness Session, presented by Brandywine Collaborative Ministries, Wednesday, February 10, 7pm
Special guest is Dr. Samantha Meints, Clinical Psychologist and Instructor from Brigham and Women’s Hospital/Harvard School of Medicine. Dr. Meints is a pioneer in clinical research focused on the role of prayer in coping with and managing physical pain. She is also spearheading, together with the Rev. Dr. Marta Illueca, our novel church and academia research project on Pain and Prayer supported by the 2020 United Thank Offering Grant. You won’t want to miss this session - tell your friends and bring your questions! Zoom Link
Virtual Children's Worship at St. Anne's, Middletown, Sundays, 8:45am with prayers, music, and age-appropriate sermons, see on St. Anne's website here. Other children's virtual worship resources are on the diocesan website here. If your church offers children's programming, please let us know so it can be posted on the website.
More helpful online resources!
New Resource for Parishes: Disaster Preparedness
This important source of information for every parish can be found on the diocesan website here.
St. John the Baptist, Milton uses new online visitor card!
The church's website offers an online visitor card just like the ones located in the pews in its sanctuary, and suggests that if members see someone new during the live stream Mass, they make sure to greet them as they would in person, and invite them to fill out a visitor card. You can see the form here.
"Build Back Better"? What To Expect From The Biden Team, by Sam Bahour, March 13, 1 pm
What we may expect from the new administration on the Israeli-Palestinian Occupation and US foreign policy. Hosted by Delawareans for Palestinian Human Rights. Co-sponsors: Delaware Churches for Middle East Peace; Students for Justice in Palestine, University of Delaware. Registration here.
Virtual Children's Worship is offered at St. Anne's, Middletown, Sundays, 8:45am
Each week Fr. Russ offers a worship service designed for children, including prayers, music, and age-appropriate sermons, viewable through the church's website here. See other parish's children's virtual worship resources on the diocesan website here. If your church offers children's worship programming, please let us know so it can be posted on the website.
Great window of opportunity for churches to do comprehensive energy audit at NO cost
Faith Efficiencies, administered by Delaware Interfaith Power & Light and funded by Energize Delaware, is currently providing comprehensive energy assessments to religious facilities throughout the state at no cost. Typically, these assessments cost $3,000-$4,000 and Energize Delaware covers 90% of that cost. But in light of COVID and strained economic times, they are able to provide these valuable tools at no cost through the end of June. The program includes virtual home energy presentations for members to help them lower their energy costs, increase comfort, create healthier indoor environments…and protect the planet. For more information, contact Lisa Locke, llocke@delawareipl.org.
News from the Episcopal Church
TODAY! The Episcopal Church and the Northern and Southern Provinces of the Moravian Church celebrate 10th anniversary of full communion, Wednesday, February 10, 7:30pm
Episcopalians, Moravians, and friends are invited to gather for this celebration of Full Communion between the Episcopal Church and the Northern and Southern Provinces of the Moravian Church. While the welcome will be offered from Central Moravian Church by the co-chairs of the Moravian-Episcopal Coordinating Committee (MECC), the virtual service will include worship leaders from various places where Moravians and Episcopalians live and serve. Watch service here. More information here
Care of Creation Grants now available, Informational Webinar February 18, 3pm
Application deadline March 26
The Episcopal Church’s Task Force on Creation Care and Environmental Racism is now accepting applications for its 2021 Grant Cycle. An informational webinar for those interested in learning more about the grants and the application process is scheduled for February 18th at 3 pm. More information in English and Spanish here
Upcoming Virtual Conferences
Insights & Ideas, February 18
A conversation on socially responsible investing. Faithful investing, linking faith and finances. More information and registration here
Racial Reconciliation and the Baptismal Covenant, February 19-21
Participate in a discussion about striving for justice and peace among all people. More information here
For a Time Such as This: The Church as Witness, 2021 CEEP Network's Digital Annual Conference
March 3-5, 2021
Join the most influential thought leaders in the Church today. Keynote Speakers include the Most Rev. Michael Curry, Presiding Bishop, and the Most Rev. and Rt. Hon. Justin Welby, Archbishop of Canterbury. More information and registration here.
Guidelines Developed for Amending Church Records for Identity Changes
At the request of General Convention (2018-A088), The Archives of the Episcopal Church has prepared a set of recommendations for developing local policy on name and gender changes to Episcopal Church records. The Guidelines for Policy on Amending Church Records for Name and Gender Changes are available on the Archives Website with Spanish translation and supporting resources and links in English and Spanish here
The Episcopal Church offers a new Global Mission Digital Toolkit for World Mission Sunday
Available on February 14, 2021. Traditionally celebrated on the last Sunday after Epiphany, this year World Mission Sunday is observed on February 14. More information
Presiding Bishop joins call for Christians to counter Christian nationalism
Presiding Bishop Michael Curry joined the Rev. Elizabeth Eaton, presiding bishop of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, for a webinar on Christian nationalism hosted by the Baptist Joint Committee for Religious Liberty, also known as BJC, on Jan. 27. The webinar provided an overview of what Christian nationalism is, how it is showing up in America and how Christians can address it. See the video and find more information here
Episcopal Church Executive Council: opening remarks from the President of the House of Deputies and the Presiding Bishop
The opening remarks of President of the House of Deputies Gay Clark Jennings at the Executive Council which met virtually through January 25, may be read in English or Spanish here.
Executive Council eyes plan for pandemic aid to dioceses, commits church to ‘deradicalization’
During its January meeting, The Episcopal Church’s Executive Council pledged to assist cash-strapped dioceses during the pandemic, committed the church to “deradicalization” efforts after the U.S. Capitol riot,and received an update on a racial audit of church leadership, during a four-day meeting at which current events influenced much of the agenda. Read full ENS article here.
News from the Anglican Communion
Anglican Communion Office at the United Nations announces new publications
The Anglican Communion Office at the United Nations (ACOUN) has submitted a statement to the 20th Session of the United Nations Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues, which will take place in April on the theme "Peace, justice and strong institutions: the role of indigenous peoples in implementing Sustainable Development". In addition, the January 2021 ACOUN newsletter is now available in Spanish and Portguguese, in addition to English. You can download all documents here.
IRAD Webinar on “Koinonia: God’s Gift and Calling”, 1-2pm, Tuesday, February 16, 2021
The International Reformed–Anglican Dialogue (IRAD) published its latest agreed statement, Koinonia: God’s Gift and Calling in December 2020. To promote this important statement, the Anglican Communion and the World Communion of Reformed Churches are hosting an online webinar.
The subject of the report is koinonia, a Greek word found frequently in the New Testament and used to describe the essential relationships that are at the centre of the Christian life. The report may be downloaded free of charge from anglicancommunion.org/irad. All are welcome to join the webinar, and hear more about IRAD’s contribution to the unity of the Church, and why koinonia has profound importance for us all. To take part in the webinar, please register with Neil Vigers to receive access details: neil.vigers@anglicancommunion.org.
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