Thank you for sustaining your heroic efforts to maintain parochial community as we continue to combat the coronavirus. I share everyone’s longing to return to in-person gathering. The numbers are finally trending in a positive direction, as a result of adherence to the protocols requested and required by federal, state, and local government agencies. Just last Thursday, the first four of the 48 counties in the Diocese of Ohio have turned from red to orange, one of which is home to an Episcopal congregation. At the same time, a number of epidemiologists are expressing caution about a potential surge at the end of March from the variant strains currently being diagnosed across the country. While we monitor that possibility, we can begin to consider the possibility of return to in-person gathering for worship, formation, and governance.
To that end, the decision of whether in-person gathering for worship, formation, and governance is safe and appropriate will return to parish leadership for services and events beginning on the 5th Sunday in Lent, March 21. This will give every congregation time to consider carefully and thoughtfully what will be best in their specific context.

Internships at Bellwether Farm
Bellwether Farm is currently seeking a Sustainable Farm intern and a Culinary intern. Full job descriptions and more information are available on the Bellwether Farm website. To apply, please send a resume and cover letter to William Powel, Canon to the Ordinary, Episcopal Diocese of Ohio, at wpowel@dohio.org.
Bellwether Farm Update
While Bellwether Farm will not be able to provide traditional summer camp this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we do have exciting news! We will be offering a variety of programming this summer with fun-filled activities for people of all generations, including one-day adventures and overnight stays in the cabins or retreat rooms for individuals, households, and limited groups. Summer programming will be released soon. Make sure to stay tuned in!
We are also hoping you will join us at a number of spring events like:
  • April Spring Seeding – Keep an eye out for our spring seeding dates in the greenhouse with Farmer Kyle
  • Fishing Competition – Catch and release fishing competition with a fish fry
  • Morels in May "You pick, we sauté" – Help us hunt for morel mushrooms – Chef Lonny will prepare
Feeding Your Soul for the Journey
Feeding Your Soul for the Journey: Care for Community has been rescheduled for Sunday, March 14. We will hold Care for the World on Sunday, April 18. Both gatherings will be held from 2:00-3:30 p.m. There is no cost for these events. For more information, questions, or to register, please email Betty Kondrich at bkondrich@dohio.org. Registration for the March 14 gathering will be open until Friday, March 12. The zoom link will be sent the Friday before.
Memorial for the Rt. Rev. Barbara C. Harris
March 13 will be the first anniversary of the passing of the Rt. Rev. Barbara Clementine Harris, retired Suffragan of the Diocese of Massachusetts. She was the first woman bishop in the Anglican Communion, and an African American. The Wilma Ruth Combs Chapter of UBE will hold a short memorial service to honor her life and ministry at 11:00 a.m. on Saturday, March 20 via Zoom. The officiant will be the Rev. Debra Bennett, Rector of Church of Our Saviour and author of a biographical chapter on Bishop Barbara to be published next year. We invite the diocesan community to join us for the service. Zoom instructions will be included in next week’s Diocesan
Carlotta East Scholarship
Applications are now being accepted for the Carlotta East Scholarship. This scholarship fund was established in 1945 to assist Episcopal women who need aid to complete their education, upgrade skills before returning to the workforce, or complete religious training. Interest and dividends, in addition to other donations, are used for the scholarships each year. The usual grant for scholarship aid is approximately $1,000 per applicant. Exceptions in amounts granted may be made by the Carlotta East Scholarship Committee. Applications may be obtained from Susan Quill, the Carlotta East Scholarship Committee Chair, via email or online at the Diocese of Ohio ECW webpage. Written references will be required from your rector and from two other persons who are familiar with your need and qualifications. If your parish has no rector currently, the reference should come from the senior warden. The deadline for receipt of applications and references is March 31
The Global Episcopal Mission Network Conference
The Global Episcopal Mission Network (GEMN) Conference will be held via Zoom on April 22-24 from 1:00-4:00 p.m. every day. The conference will focus on climate change and ecological degradation constitute the major planetary crisis of our time. More information is available on the conference webpage. Registration is now open. Please let the Rev. Margaret D’Anieri, Canon for Mission, that you have registered. There is no fee for the conference, but attendees are encouraged to make a donation as they are able. If you are not already a member of GEMN, we hope you will become a member when you register for the conference. There will also be opportunity to contribute to ecological justice projects in various parts of the world.  
Anti-Racism Trainings
Anti-Racism training is required for all individuals in elected and appointed Diocesan positions, and it is also open to all members of the Diocese. 

The Commission for Racial Justice will offer this two-day training on the following date:
  • April 24 and 25 - Zoom video conference (Saturday and Sunday from 9:00 a.m. until 3:00 p.m. both days)

The cost of the training materials is covered by the Diocese of Ohio. You must commit to attending the full sessions and to doing the off-line work. Registration is required. For additional information please email the Rev. Margaret D’Anieri at mdanieri@dohio.org.
Parochial Assessment Forms
The 2021 Parochial Assessment forms are available on the diocesan website. The 2021 Estimate of Monthly Support, the 2021 Monthly Assessment form, and the 2021 January Assessment form are available under the parish resources tab.
www.ChurchNext.tv is a high-quality online spiritual formation resource for parishes and individuals. Subscriber parishes can take courses together on a variety of topics including scripture, liturgy, and many other areas of personal and spiritual growth. Courses are taught by experts, many from The Episcopal Church, and allow members to learn what they want, when they want, and at their own pace. Participants can learn anywhere there is an Internet connection on a PC, laptop, or tablet. Your parish will develop its own “school” which will allow members to take courses by themselves, in small groups, or even as a congregation. 

The Diocese of Ohio will pay for a one-year subscription for any parish willing to give ChurchNext a meaningful try-out. If you are interested, please email the Rev. Brad Purdom
Diocesan Audit Team Request Available
Lenten Sunday Night Student Compline
Youth in the Diocese of Ohio are invited to gather on Sunday nights at 8:00 p.m. during Lent to pray, check in, get in the right head space for the upcoming week, and just be together. All youth in grades 6-12 welcomed. The Zoom link is available at bit.ly/SundayNightCompline⁠.
Seaman's Church Institute Knitting Program
The Diocese of Ohio ECW is collected hand-knitted and crocheted items for the Seamen’s Church Institute Christmas-at-Sea knitting program. If you have items ready to be sent, please contact Susan Little at susanlittle@neo.rr.com so that they can be mailed to Port Newark, NJ.  Additional information and patterns are available.
Self-Guided Nature Hikes at Bellwether Farm
Self-guided nature hike guides (centered on The Way of Love) are available at Bellwether Farm for individuals or families to explore the wonder of God’s creation through Bellwether’s forests and along the river. Call 440.839.0088 to reserve a time to hike. 
PPP Loan Forgiveness - First Draw Loans
PPP loans which were applied for in 2020 under the CARES Act are now termed, “First Draw PPP Loans.” The Consolidated Appropriations Act, enacted on December 27, 2020, provides for a simplified forgiveness application for loans of $150,000 or less. If your parish deferred applying for forgiveness waiting for guidance, this expedited process may be beneficial to you. The application and instructions are available. (Note: The application has been updated).

The maturity dates of First Draw PPP Loans are two years for loans approved before June 5, and five years for loans approved on or after that date.  Forgiveness must be applied for before the maturity date.  

However, payments due on the loan are only deferred for 10 months beyond the end of the covered period. The covered period began the date the loan amount was received, and ends no later than 24 weeks later. Example: The diocese received its PPP loan on April 21, 2020. The initial 8-week covered period ended June 16, 2020, but was extended to October 5, the end of the 24-week covered period. Because the diocese did not use the entire loan amount during the first 8 weeks, we chose the 24-week covered period to receive full forgiveness. For loans approved on or after June 5, 2020, the covered period is 24-months. Our first payment would have been due on August 5, 2021, eight months after the end of our 24-week covered period. No payments are due, since we applied for and received full forgiveness in November 2020.  

We encourage all parishes to apply for forgiveness before any payments would be due on the loan. The process has taken far less time than allowed under the loan provisions. The diocese received its approval of forgiveness 1 month after applying, and some parishes have received it in 2 weeks. Please keep these time frames in mind when planning and applying for loan forgiveness.
PPP Second Draw Loans
Parishes that received a PPP Loan in 2020 may be eligible to apply for a second PPP loan which is referred to as a “Second Draw PPP Loan.” The relevant eligibility criteria are:
  1. received a First Draw PPP loan and will or has used the full amount only for authorized uses; 
  2. and can demonstrate at least a 25% reduction in gross receipts between comparable quarters in 2020 vs. 2019.  

The filing window opened on January 11, but not all lenders may be accepting applications yet. The deadline to apply is March 31.

The terms of the loan are generally the same, but allowable costs have been expanded to include worker protection expenditures, covered supplier costs, and covered operations expenditures.  

The notice, instructions, and application are available.
PPP Loan Forgiveness
The AICPA has developed two tools to help with the application for PPP Loan forgiveness. The first is an Excel spreadsheet that walks through all the calculations required to prepare the application request. The second tool will actually determine which of the forgiveness forms is needed and prepare a signature ready application form based on the data entered.  
Learn, Pray, Act
Resources from the Episcopal Church for addressing racist violence are available. This is a growing list of litanies, learning opportunities, and suggested actions and connections from across The Episcopal Church and beyond. There are links to some specialized resources on the Diocesan website. As you are thinking about how to respond in your parish and community, please be in touch with the Rev. Margaret D'Anieri, Canon for Mission, at mdanieiri@dohio.org.
Lenten Anti-Racism Book Conversation
The Summit Mission Area is hosting anti-racism book conversations via Zoom on March 13 and April 10. The conversations will focus on the five books listed on the flyer, but participants are also welcome to join if they have not read any of the books. The Rt. Rev. Arthur B. Williams, Jr. will be joining the conversation on March 13 to discuss his personal journey and unique perspective as an African American bishop in The Episcopal Church.
Donations for Your Neighbors Cloak at St. Luke's
St. Luke’s, Cleveland is seeking various items of clothing to help with Your Neighbors Cloak. Please label all donations by gender, size, and it would be helpful to know if the item(s) is for an adult, teen or child. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, they can currently only accept certain items: winter hats, gloves, jackets in all sizes and genders, sweatshirts or hoodies, thermal underwear, gently used shoes, boots, and sneakers, and blankets and throws or wraps. They are also in need of underwear and socks for all ages and in all sizes. Used underwear and socks will not be accepted. To coordinate a time to drop off donations, or to chat with a Your Neighbor's Cloak representative, please email clothing.stluke.cleveland@gmail.com.
Province V Opportunities
The Province V Economic Justice hosts a recurring meeting the first Thursday of the month at 1:30 p.m. More information, including a description of the network and the zoom link, can be found on the Province V webpage.

More opportunities to get involved within Province V can be found in the Province V newsletter. To receive updates and information from Province V, please sign up for the Province V newsletter.