A biweekly publication for telling and hearing the stories
of this extraordinary time

Wednesday, January 6, 2021

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From Our Bishop
Let’s walk bravely, boldly into the light
"For us in this time that has been pandemic, God has turned on a light," says Bishop Hughes. "We've been learning something about what the church could be. We've been learning something about who we are called to be as faithful people."

Click on the video at right to watch (time: 4:48), or click here to read the transcript.
Upcoming Events
Faith Groups: Sharing our Lives, Growing in Faith
FRI, JAN 29, 7 PM
SAT, JAN 30, 9 AM - 12 NOON
The disruptions of the pandemic have encouraged us to find new ways of being in relationship with one another. While the technology we use to connect may be new, Church tradition offers a model for relationships that is still relevant today: intentional small groups.

At our January gathering, held during our traditional Convention weekend*, our focus will be on “Faith Groups: Sharing our Lives, Growing in Faith,” which will offer a pattern for gathering intentionally in small groups to share times of prayer, reflection, and to grow together in faith.

We hope that every parish will be represented at this event. Find out more and register online.

* Due to the pandemic, Diocesan Convention is postponed until Summer 2021, date to be announced.
Bishop's Study Group: Pursuing Racial Reconciliation through Scripture, Film, Word, and Prayer
This six-week study group will focus on building a spiritual and theological response to racial injustice. Registrants are asked to commit to attending at least four of the sessions. Find out more.

Register here by 5 PM Friday, Jan. 8.

The first session yesterday, on Chapter 1 of Philippians and the film Harriet, was video recorded and will be made available to all who register by Jan. 8.
Pop In with Pop Up Youth - Zoom meeting
SUN, JAN 10, 3 PM
The Pop Up Youth Ministry is continuing to meet via Zoom. All youth in grades 6-12 are invited to participate.

Click here to register in advance for this meeting. After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.

Questions? Contact the Pop Up Youth Fellows at popupym@dioceseofnewark.org.
Practicing Christ - The Way of Jesus as Transformative Practice
MON, JAN 11-MAR 1, 6-7:30 PM
Sponsored by the Diocesan Nourishing Spirituality Group and Interweave, this eight-session course will feature a rooting in Scripture, presentation, discussion, worship and a variety of spiritual practices.

Registration is required by 12 noon on Sunday, Jan. 10. Find out more.
I get by with a little help from my friends:
Online community for diocesan youth
By Matt Porowski, Pop Up Youth Ministry Fellow
Since last March, the Pop Up Youth Ministry team has been adapting events to fit into an hour-long Zoom call on Sunday afternoons. They have also realized that one of the scarcest resources this year has been true connection, for conversations beyond saying “I’m pandemic good.”

One of the goals for Pop Up Youth Ministry is to provide brave spaces to talk about how participants feel and what is going on in their lives. Any and all youth in grades 6-12 are invited participate. Find out more, including plans for the first few months of 2021.
Christ Church, Teaneck given $10K for food pantry
By Bill McColl
The food pantry at Christ Church in Teaneck has received a $10,000 donation to help feed those who have been impacted by the economic crisis caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The board of the Hudson Lutheran Charity chose Christ Church to receive the gift just a week before Christmas.

“I was shocked,” says the Rev. Michelle White, vicar at Christ Church. Read more.
Prison Ministry gets creative during COVID pandemic
By the Rev. Sharon Sheridan Hausman
Online arts workshops. Home delivery of pumpkins and backpacks. Recorded worship.

Like other ministries across the diocese, Prison Ministry spent most of 2020 adapting to the changing circumstances of the COVID-19 pandemic to continue serving prisoners and their families. Read more.
How to prevent losing your church website's domain name
By Nina Nicholson
Imagine this: You go to your church website and discover it’s been replaced by a Russian gambling website.

This happened to one of the churches in our diocese the day after Christmas – but their website had not been hacked. In fact, nothing illegal had occurred at all. Read more.
In the News
Bishop Hughes and Canon Wright:
DEC. 17, 2020 | Episcopal News Service
St. Paul's, Paterson:
DEC. 22, 2020 | Paterson Press
Presiding Bishop Curry:
JAN. 1, 2021 | PBS NewsHour
Don't let your congregation's story go untold!
The next issue of The VOICE Online will be published Wednesday, Jan. 20, 2021. Submit items for consideration by 10 AM Wednesday, Jan. 15 at dioceseofnewark.org/VOICE-submissions.
Diocesan Announcements & Resources
Fourth BCEF Call of 2020: St. Thomas', Lyndhurst
The Bishop’s Church Emergency Fund (BCEF) provides financial support for church buildings in the diocese needing repairs and renovation, usually with a special focus on emergency and unforeseen needs. Through the BCEF, you can support the critical needs identified by the Bishop.

The fourth BCEF call of 2020 is for lead paint abatement at St. Thomas', Lyndhurst. Find out more.
New worship guidelines for congregations
Effective Dec. 14, 2020, the revised Journey Forward guidelines will be in effect. All counties in the diocese are currently at a critical risk level, limiting in-person worship to those required to be present to lead worship or provide recording/live streaming support.

Please send changes to Nina Nicholson at nnicholson@dioceseofnewark.org.
Updates received after 4 PM Friday will be posted the following week.

A holy place in virtual space for mourning and memory.

Prayers can be sent to Canon Wright at awright@dioceseofnewark.org for posting.
Please include the name and town of your church.
New online application process for Ward J. Herbert grants
The Ward J. Herbert Board is excited to introduce the new online application process for Ward J. Herbert grants. This process will replace the long Word document with a simple three-step process. Find out more.

The application deadline for the first Ward J. Herbert grant cycle of 2021 is Tuesday, Feb. 16 by 12 noon.
Happening at Cross Roads
Join Cross Roads for Virtual Sunday School
Your church can still join the Bold Transformational Faith (BTF) initiative. Join Cross Roads for weekly Sunday School at 11 am or 4 pm or use the curriculum on your own time. The four-week ADVENTure curriculum begins on Sunday, November 29 and after a Christmas break, BTF resumes with a NEW Sunday School curriculum on January 10. Learn more here.
Young Adult Small Group: January 2021
Are you looking to meet new people and explore your faith in the new year? In place of a one weekend retreat, this year Cross Roads is offering a weekly Young Adult Small Group devotional experience for the month of January, from 7-8 pm every Thursday on Zoom. All young adults, ages 18 to 30ish, are invited to participate. Sign up here.
Register for Youth Retreats: February and March 2021
EXPLORE! with Cross Roads this winter at our virtual youth retreats. Over the course of a few hours, kids and youth leaders will EXPLORE the ways God is present in our world and in our lives. There are three EXPLORE! retreat dates and times for different age groups. Find all information including registration here.
Summer Staff applications now open!
No matter what exactly next summer at Cross Roads looks like, we will need trustworthy and creative young adults to help serve the Cross Roads community. Applications to work on Summer Staff 2021 are now OPEN! Learn more and apply on the Cross Roads website. You can read the most recent update about summer camp at Cross Roads here.
The VOICE Online is currently being published every other Wednesday