April 4, 2018
Volume 8, Number 32
Easter Around the Diocese
Early service at St. Anne's Tifton, above and right, with Bishop Benhase officiating. 22 people joined the church that day: six baptisms (including two adults), 15 receptions and one confirmation.    

The processional at the Easter Vigil at St. Thomas' Thomasville, left, and the Egg Hunt later that morning, above. 

At right, the search for Easter eggs brings children to the cross decorated with flowers at St. Peter's. At left: the gifts of God..." offered by the Rev. Denise Ronn, Rector at St. Philip's Hinesville.

The Easter egg hunt at the Collegiate Church of St. Paul's Savannah.

The interior of Christ Church Frederica on St. Simons Island.
Shadows and sunlight at Christ Church Cordele.
In This Issue
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This Sunday's Lections
Easter Sunday
Acts 4:32-35
I John 1:1-2:2
John 20:19-31
Psalm 133

Go  here for the full text.
Christ Church: Witness to History
Tonight at 7:01 PM, Christ Church will join churches and universities across the U.S. in tolling its bell 39 times to honor the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Dr. King was felled by an assassin's bullet 50 years ago today in Memphis, Tennessee when he was 39 years old.

After Dr. King's assassination on April 4th, 1968, other major U.S. cities erupted in rioting but Savannah responded with peace, reconciliation and prayer. Christ Church Savannah was at the forefront of this effort and led a community-wide memorial service on April 7, 1968, known as a "practical eulogy." According to newspaper accounts, the church was filled to capacity with both black and white congregants while an overflow crowd listened outside with the help of a loud speaker.

"In the aftermath of Dr. King's horrific death, most of white America was silent. There were still those, however, who even though they did not know exactly all they should do, chose to respond to the prejudice and hatred with the commandment of Jesus 'to love our neighbors as ourselves'," said Bishop Scott Anson Benhase. "Dr. King preached that our common humanity, and thus our unity, lies in how God redeems and loves us in Jesus Christ. The equality for which we still long flows from this unity and are God's gifts for us to use in the ongoing cause of racial justice."

Civic and religious leaders participated in the memorial service including then-mayor Curtis Lewis, former Mayor and Christ Church member Malcolm Maclean, Christ Church's former Rector Dr. F. Bland Tucker, the Diocese of Georgia's sixth Bishop Albert Rhett Stuart and Monsignor John D. Toomey, pastor of St. James' Catholic Church.
Other speakers and attendees included Rabbi Abraham Rosenberg from Congregation B'nai Brith Jacob; the Rev. Pickens Patterson, pastor of Butler Presbyterian Church; Gen. Frank Meszar from Ft. Stewart; the Rev. Harry Nevels, rector of St. Matthew's Episcopal Church; the Rev. Scott Stelle, pastor of Bethlehem Baptist Church; and Fr. Thomas Paris, the pastor of St. Paul's Greek Orthodox Church.

Christ Church members Jack and Mimi Jones were at the memorial service and recalled how Bishop Stuart, Dr. Tucker and the church's vestry were instrumental in insisting that Christ Church host the inter-racial observance. "Savannah could have erupted in violence like many other cities, but having the service at Christ Church showed the larger community that we could all come together as one body and respect the dignity of every human being." 

The Episcopal Church commemorates Dr. King with an annual feast day on April 4, the anniversary of his death.
Ask the Bishop Livestream to Debut
This Friday, April 6 at 11 AM  the Diocese of Georgia will debut "Ask the Bishop" with Bishop Scott Anson Benhase. Broadcast via Facebook Live, the Bishop will answer questions related to the faith and life of the church. Send questions to newsandevents@gaepiscopal.org and include "Ask the Bishop" in the heading. The livestream will be able to be viewed on the Diocese of Georgia's Facebook page by going here: facebook.com/georgiaepiscopal.
Time to Register for Camp!

Go here to register for the best summer of your life: camp at Honey Creek Retreat Center. Make lifelong friendships, have fun, swim, fish and just be yourself at Honey Creek!

Summer camp registration:
Summer Camp 2018 Wish List:
Footballs, beads, games, soccer balls and a rubber chicken. Camp essentials make up the Wish List for Honey Creek. Want to contribute to the life of the camp? Go  here.

Wilson NFL Super Grip Official Football Franklin Sports Superskin Foam 6 Inch Dodgeballs - Six Pack Franklin Sports 5010C1 Grip-Rite Junior Football American Brasilia Soccer Ball (Orange, 2)

Receive Community Service Credits!
Sign up now for Toil 'N Sweat, April 13-15! This traditional youth event for students in grades six through 12 offers a chance to give back to Honey Creek in a way that benefits both youth and adult participants in all future events at the Creek! High School students can earn service hours for their participation in the event as well.

Our work plans include painting the exterior of Lodge One, some interior painting, and other duties as assigned. We will gather Friday night for games, music, and worship, and prepare for the following day. After Morning Worship, we'll get outside and start painting! The evening will be time to relax and appreciate all we have done. Our weekend concludes with Eucharist and Lunch on Sunday.

Honey Creek will provide the needed supplies, but we suggest all participants bring work gloves and make sure that all Saturday clothes can get splattered with paint!

The regular registration cost for the event is $125 per person. Scholarship, which usually divides the cost between family, home congregation, and Diocese, is available! Please contact Canon Joshua Varner at jvarner@gaepiscopal.org with any questions, including those about scholarship!

Sign up is due by the end of Sunday, April 8! Register at http://bit.ly/ToilNSweat2018 or visit the Youth Website at http://youth.georgiaepiscopal.org for more information!
Administrator's Corner
Upcoming Financial Review/Audit Season
The Diocesan office is hard at work gearing up for its financial audit and review this summer.

It is time for congregations to pull together resources and plan for financial review. The Diocesan Canons require audits/financial reviews of congregation financial operations. If the annual operating budget is greater than $500,000, a full third party audit is required. If less than $500,000, the Diocese has a 36-question internal control checklist that parishes can use for individuals, not associated with financial procedures, to review records and procedures.

All audits are due for final report to the Diocesan office by September 1st. Many congregations partner each year to review and conduct checklists for submission. Audits, along with parochial reports, are required for voice and vote at the annual Diocesan Convention. You can find the checklist

It can be a daunting task each year for administrators, clergy, and volunteers to get themselves organized for a review. The following are some best practices to consider when preparing:

1. Keep detailed records Each year, a vestry should review the record keeping practices of its parish/organization. Whether it is paper or electronic, detailed records of accounts payables, receivables, endowments, assets, and other detailed financial transactions should be kept in a well-organized and effectively searched method

2. Maintain security Many records hold sensitive information- please ensure that files are either password protected, on a secure network, or kept in lockable file cabinet

3. Make a checklist Many professional audit firms will provide a detailed checklist of items to gather and review. Checklists are a great way to organize yourself for record pulling and review. Review the internal controls checklist to determine what files and reports help answer audit questions. Your checklist can also help administrators and volunteers divvy up tasks and take ownership or reporting information

4. Determine recommendations Each year should result in recommendations for improvement of procedures, policies, and reporting -- even if it is small improvements and determining best practices for financial controls

5. Report and communicate Once an audit is complete, make sure to supply reports to vestry members and communicate impacts of reports to congregations. This helps to support budget and annual stewardship campaigns

Audits are designed to help churches manage their resources. Additionally, it is a great opportunity for vestries to learn the detailed administration requirements. Many people get nervous around this time, but it can be an incredible learning opportunity for your leadership and community.

For any questions, please reach out to Canon Willoughby at Diocesan house at kwilloughby@gaepiscopal.org
Register for Down to the River to Pray

Enjoy a peaceful, prayerful half-day "creek retreat" on Saturday, April 21, exploring the tidal creeks in the marsh behind Saint Simons Island. This is a relaxed paddle with several stops for prayer and readings along the way as we celebrate the beauty of God's Creation on Earth Day weekend.

The trip will leave from the Village Creek landing for SouthEast Adventure Outfitters and will finish with Eucharist and optional potluck supper at Christ Church, Frederica. Participants will meet at 1 PM and the paddle should last around 2.5 hours. Cost is $49 per person (with boat rental) or $20 per person for those providing their own boat(s). The group size is limited so early registration is recommended.

This is the first of several planned "Down to the River to Pray" events across the diocese this spring, sponsored by the Creation Care Commission in partnership with GIPL (Georgia Interfaith Power & Light). Register by going here. If you are interested and would like to receive an email with registration details, please email creationcarecommission@gmail.com.

More Photos from Around the Diocese

Lighting the flame at St. Luke's Rincon.

Acolytes light the candles for the early service at St. Michael's and All Angels Savannah.

Acolytes at St. Paul's Albany

St. Michael's Waynesboro.

With the cross they decorated, children at Christ the King Kingsland.
Prayers for Weekly Liturgies
Our one-year prayer cycle combines prayers for every congregation in the Diocese of Georgia with prayers for our ecumenical partners and for our Companion Diocese of The Dominican Republic. The 52 weekly prayers are available in one document  found here. 

April 1-7
In our diocesan cycle of prayer, we pray for our congregations in Darien, St. Andrew's and St. Cyprian's. We also pray for our ecumenical partners in Darien, especially Nativity of Our Lady Catholic Church. In our companion diocese of the Dominican Republic, we pray for St. Michael's (San Miguel) in Doña Ana.

April 8-14
In our diocesan cycle of prayer, we pray for our congregation in Douglas, St. Andrew's and for our ecumenical partners in Douglas, especially St. Paul's Catholic Church.  In our companion diocese of the Dominican Republic, we pray for St. Thomas' (Santo Tomás) in Gautier.
Diocesan Office Update and News  
Bishop Scott Anson Benhase will make his annual visitation to St. Peter's Savannah at 10 AM Sunday, April 8th. He will visit Georgia Southern University's Campus Ministry at 6:30 PM Tuesday, April 10th. His full schedule is available  here. 

The Rev. Canon Frank Logue will preside and preach at St. George's Savannah this Sunday. He and Victoria will be on a pilgrimage to Israel from April 9-18.

The Rev. Canon Joshua Varner will be preaching at St. Luke's Rincon this Sunday, April 8th. He will also officiate at the noon Thursday service in St. George's Chapel at Diocesan House. 
Share your news in From the Field
Send your news, events and photos to   so we can feature them in upcoming issues of From the Field. Deadline for submissions each week is Monday at 4:30 PM.  
Ask the Bishop
Facebook Livestream with Bishop Scott Benhase
11 AM
Friday, April 6

Toil 'N Sweat Work Weekend for youth in grades 6-12
April 13-15
Honey Creek Retreat Center
Register here.

Episcopal Church Women/Daughters of the King Retreat
April 27-28
St. Patrick's Albany
For information on accommodations, go here
To register and pay online, go here.
To download the registration form and pay by mail, go here.
To download the event schedule, go here.

Spring Clergy Conference
May 6-8
Honey Creek Retreat Center
Register by going here

Diocesan Council Meeting
May 11

Hometown Missions
 June 1-3
Augusta, Georgia
For more information go here.

The procession at St. George's Savannah on Easter Sunday.
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