August 19, 2021
A twice-monthly summary of news and events,
for the people of the
Episcopal Churches of West Missouri
August is winding down, and the children are heading back to school. Before we know it, we'll be getting our pets blessed.

Labor Day seems to be the traditional Episcopalian calendar marker for switching from summer to Fall/Winter schedules. COVID or not, it's looking like we have a busy time ahead, so keep reading these twice-a-month updates to stay in touch with what's going on!

The recent earthquake in Haiti (scroll down for more information) should serve as a reminder for us all to pay attention to the National Preparedness Month this September.

This year in West Missouri, we've seen some widespread flooding and some tornadoes too. As a member of the diocesan emergency planning team, I'm concerned. Over six years after its introduction, and following some pretty nasty weather events, not to mention the pandemic, many of our churches still haven't put their basic information into the Episcopal Asset Map, and even churches more haven't produced an emergency plan.

In case you don't know, the Asset Map is designed to keep track of church assets that could be made available to local communities and emergency services in the event of a significant disaster. It records things like large parking lots, kitchens, showers, space for temporary beds, and other resources. Unfortunately, without the information specifying what is available, it is of negligible value. 

Anyone can update a church's Asset Map entry. Just find your church and click on 'Update this Place.' You don't need an account or log in to suggest changes. Just type in your suggestions. Don't worry. All submitted changes are moderated to ensure accuracy. As a bonus, the essential information you provide about your church is used in the 'Find a Church' facility offered by The Episcopal Church and the diocese. Check it out here.

As to your church's emergency plan, there's an example plan for you to follow and other preparedness resources available here.


Our monthly diocesan staff meetings have been a hybrid of in-person and online events for many years, and of course, more recently, they've been exclusively online. 
(L-R) Elaine Gilligan (Human Resources), Kim Snodgrass (Christian Formation), Emily Davenport (Bishop's Assistant), Josh Trader (Youth Ministry), Fr. Bill Fasel (Leadership Development), Donna Field, Bishop Marty, Jamillah Duckett (Events), Canon Steve Rottgers, Ron Weil (Finance) Gary Allman (Communications).
August 4 marked Bishop Marty's last staff meeting. As we're all vaccinated, we took this opportunity to gather together in person for the first time since, well, we had trouble remembering. A lot of collective head-scratching was required to determine that we were last together in person in December 2019.  

To mark the occasion, we gathered in the courtyard outside the diocesan office for the above photograph.


That's it from me for this issue. Scroll on down for what has turned out to be another packed New Spirit Update, and I'll see you again on September 2.
Send your news to, and share what your church is doing in the New Spirit Update.

Don't forget, if you want to promote or help with your events, contact Jamillah Duckett at
Gary Allman
Communications Director
Earthquake-battered Haitian Episcopalians assess damage as ministry partners prepare to help
Eight-minute read.
Haitian Episcopalians have spent the hours since the August 14 7.2 magnitude earthquake searching for family and friends while assessing the damage to their churches, schools, and communities as their ministry partners across The Episcopal Church have anxiously awaited their news.

Video: Introduction to Bishop Bruce
Five-minute video.
Bishop Bruce, the nominee for Bishop Provisional of West Missouri, has shared a brief video introduction in both English and Spanish. La siguiente información se presenta en inglés y en español

Feature Heading
Potential Data Breach
One-minute read.
On the afternoon of August 6, we noticed some unusual account activity on one of the accounts on our bulk emailing service – Constant Contact. As far as we can determine, none of the data on the system has been tampered with. However, we can not rule out that some data may have been copied.

Presiding Bishop Michael Curry encourages Americans to get vaccinated: “Do this one for the children”
Two-minute video.
Join @PB_Curry by sharing your own “I Got Mine” story. Post your photo or video with the #igotmine hashtag, tag and invite your friends, and tell the world what getting the COVID-19 vaccine means to you.

Únase a @PB_Curry y comparta su propia historia “Yo ya me la puse”. Publique su foto o video con el hashtag #igotmine #yoyamelapuse, y etiquete e invite a sus amigos a hacer lo mismo, y cuéntele al mundo lo que significa para usted haberse podido poner la vacuna contra el COVID-19.
Reach Out Challenge
One-minute read.
Most of us know someone, friend or family, who could use a break. In August, the Everything Holy project suggested households challenge themselves to reach out and help.
Have you thought about trying a prayer app?
One-minute read.
Apps can offer convenient, flexible ways to structure your life of prayer.

Get nominated. Your help is needed in guiding the diocese
One-minute read.
Have you considered volunteering your time and talents to serving the church in diocesan leadership (elected and/or appointed) and wondered what would be expected of you? How much time is involved? Descriptions of all opportunities are available online.
Every Perfect Gift / Cada don perfecto Annual Pledge Campaign Materials are here
One-minute read.
This year’s annual pledge campaign from TENS, The Episcopal Network for Stewardship is ready for you to incorporate into your fall stewardship campaign. Their theme this year, Every Perfect Gift, focuses our attention on all of the gifts that God gives us.
Bishop Marty's Sermons

In this issue we have two new sermons to share. The Commemoration of Laurence of Rome, St. John’s, Springfield, August 11, and the Eleventh Sunday after Pentecost, St. Mark’s, Kimberling City, August 8. Both are available to listen to online.
What's happening
This training fulfills the intent of several General Convention resolutions which call for leaders at all levels of The Episcopal Church to receive training on the Church’s teaching about racial diversity as well as other forms of diversity present within the human family.
Youth Events
None at this time.
Church Events
July 1 - October 1
Join us At the Table to gather in community. Gather around a community table as households or in small groups to hear five stories where Jesus breaks bread with others, reminding us that when we gather in his name, we are living as God’s family.
External Events
August 21
Presiding Bishop Michael Curry will give opening remarks for the first-ever National Grand Ultreya for the Episcopal Cursillo Ministry.  The event will feature talks by five other bishops of the Episcopal Church as well as lay people and priests. Online. Noon. Pre-registration is required by clicking here.
September 11
Province VII ECW Conference. All women in Province VII are invited to this conference, now 100% virtual, due to the COVID-19 situation. Click here for details, including registration, and to download the updated conference brochure.
Education and Training
August 16 – October 8
Bishop Kemper School for Ministry September 2021 Courses. Diakonia II (D), Introduction to Scripture, and Old Testament 3. Classes begin on August 16. The in-person focus weekend meets September 11-12. Classes end on October 8. Click here to register.
September 13 – November 12
Bishop Kemper School for Ministry October 2021 Courses. Adult Catechesis and Formation, Anglican History, New Testament, and Old Testament I. Classes begin September 13. The in-person focus weekend meets October 9-10. Classes end on November 12. Click here to register.
September 18 & October 2
Fall Diversity Workshop: Undoing Racism. The purpose of this workshop is to assist the diocese in organizing to eliminate the sin of racism. Two workshop days. Online.10 a.m. – 3 p.m. each day. Click here to register.
Clergy Events and Services
Every Wednesday
Compline. Online. 9 p.m.
Every 2nd Thursday
2nd Thursday’s Clergy Conversation. Online. 10 a.m. – 11:30 a.m. If you have not received the login credentials for this meeting, please contact your Dean.
October 4-6
Clergy Retreat at Conception Abbey. A registration link will be available soon.
August 19
Children and Family Ministry — let’s share ideas. Online. 7 p.m. – 8 p.m.
August 21
Central Deanery Council. Online. 10 a.m. - noon.
Northwest-Metro Deanery Council. Online. 10 a.m. - noon.
August 25
Southern Deanery Council. Online. 10 a.m. - noon.
September 8
Diversity and Reconciliation Commission. Online. 4 p.m. – 5 p.m.
September 24
Annual Convention Reports & Rosters
October 1
Last day to sign-up to receive materials for At the Table
October 6
Annual Convention Resolutions
October 10
Annual Convention Registration
Bishop Marty's Church Visits
A complete list of Bishop Marty's church visits can be found here.
Many churches in the diocese are offering daily prayers, reflections, and Sunday worship online.
Seen an error or omission? Let us know:
Clergy, Administrators, and Church Leaders
Infrastructure bill includes energy efficiency grants for houses of worship
Three-minute read.
Deferred maintenance at aging sanctuaries has become an ever-increasing burden. A $50 million pilot program would award grants of up to $200,000 for energy efficiency.
New Stewardship Resources available
One-minute read.
ven when the annual giving program works well, churches might consider changing it up about every three years so everyone participating experiences God’s call in a new and engaging way.

This new page provides resources to consider as you contemplate your annual giving program.
Changing the times of your online services?

Don't forget to let us know so we can keep the list of online services up to date.

Email any changes to
Bulletin Inserts
Bulletin & church newsletter inserts for you to consider and include.
Inserts from The Episcopal Church

These weekly bulletin inserts provide information about the history, music, liturgy, mission and ministry of The Episcopal Church, and may be of help to churches with limited time and resources to prepare weekly bulletins.

Lesson, sermon, and bulletin resources for churches and groups

Second chance - In case you missed it
Church leaders — Four things you should know

Bishop Provisional candidate for West Missouri announced by the Standing Committee

Candidato Obispo provisional para West Missouri anunciado por el Comité Permanente

Aviso: La siguiente información se presenta en español
Diocesan Prayer Cycle images are now available to churches in advance

Spread The Word