[Anglican Taonga] New Zealand’s Anglican community has chosen the Rt. Rev. Philip Richardson, bishop of Taranaki, as its new archbishop.
He was confirmed as archbishop-elect in Wellington March 22 at a meeting of representatives of the country’s seven Tikanga Pakeha dioceses.
From May 1, Richardson, 55, will become one of three archbishops leading the Anglican Church of Aotearoa, New Zealand and Polynesia. He will continue as bishop of Taranaki, and carry on his dual role from his New Plymouth base.
Richardson has assembled an impressive record of work across the community in the 14 years he has been bishop in Taranaki, and achieved real credibility with regional and civic leaders, according to a news article from Anglican Taonga.
“I have the highest regard for him,” says Harry Duynhoven, mayor of New Plymouth. “Philip has done a huge job for the Anglican Church in our region – and for our community as well.”
Peter Tennent – who was Harry Duynhoven’s predecessor as mayor – is equally affirming of Richardson’s role in the wider Taranaki community. “He is a visionary, and a number of projects, big and small, are directly attributable to his leadership,” he said. “The Bishop’s Action Foundation, for example, has become a formidable organisation driving positive change here. I join all from Taranaki in congratulating Philip – the church and this country are in very good hands.”
Beverley Lady Reeves, widow of Bishop Paul Reeves, is another who holds Richardson in high regard. “And I know my husband did as well, as he demonstrated abundantly at the end of his life,” she said.
She and her husband had spent a week in New Plymouth in March 2010 as “Philip involved the whole city in the preparations for St. Mary’s church becoming a cathedral.”
That consecration took place 150 years after the beginning of the Land Wars in Taranaki, and Lady Reeves notes how Richardson has encouraged her husband’s Te Atiawa people “to rediscover St. Mary’s as a place of worship.”
There’s been acclamation too, from further afield – from Archbishop of York John Sentamu, who had first met Richardson during his visit to Taranaki to consecrate St. Mary’s as a cathedral.
Sentamu says that he had been moved during his visit by the hongi “in which the breath of life from God is shared, and our common humanity is affirmed.”
“Bishop Philip’s ministry is built on this same understanding, that we are all equally valued and loved in the eyes of God,” he added. “When my wife Margaret and I heard the news, we burst into a waiata: He Honore, He Kororia, (All honor and glory to God)”
The new archbishop’s priorities
Richardson says his top priorities as archbishop will be helping the church to work together for the common good, to advocate for people on the margins, and to help the church to “deepen its discipleship” – in other words, to live out its faith.
“The church,” he says, “really does exist for those who are outside itself. We’re not a club. We are people who are committed to building communities which are healthy. Lifegiving, just communities where everyone has a place, where every individual has the ability to live full and meaningful lives.
“The church is really committed to that. We are committed to the common good. So a really high priority for me is to work in whatever way I can to enhance our ability to work together as a church to contribute to that common good.”
Richardson was elected bishop of Taranaki in 1999, and since then he has developed a reputation for driving new ideas and new developments.
One of those innovations has been launching and driving the Bishop’s Action Foundation – a trust which, from a standing start in 2005, has grown into a body with a NZ$1 million (US$840,000) annual budget and a staff of nine who work “to tackle unmet needs in Taranaki” through building the capacity of volunteer and community groups.
Richardson says the challenge now is to translate that kind of regional contribution onto a national stage.
Doing that, he says, will depend first on the church’s ability to build relationships.
“In Taranaki, we’ve worked hard to build relationships across all sectors: political; industrial; business; educational; local government and the community sector.”
At a national level, he says the church has already established “some credible relationships across the political spectrum” – and those relationships have to be developed further.
“The second thing we need to do is build credibility. Credibility is based on what we do . We are not saved by good works. But what we do describes God’s love and God’s grace. And people are looking for a credible example, an outworking of what Christian love in practice looks like.”
And the third requirement, he says, is for the church to become engaged “at the point of greatest need.
“We’ve always got to engage where we can make the most difference; where there is the greatest need.”
Richardson says he’s “a passionate believer in really good quality research” – and he thinks the church has a unique ability to tap into that quality research.
“We’re on the ground in every community,” he says, “in a way that few other organizations are. Just look at any analysis of volunteer or community work, and look at how many of the people serving their community have a faith base. They’re a disproportionately larger figure than our size as churches would lead you to expect. That gives us an extraordinary resource – of raw data of what’s actually happening.
“So if we really want to be able to have our voice heard – and it’s a very distinctive voice – and we want to speak Gospel values into decision making, and into the kind of choices as a society that we have to make, then we really have to do that in a very well articulated and informed way.”
Richardson says that the church’s ability to contribute to the life of the nation will depend, above all, on “deepening its discipleship.”
“I love the image of the disciple being the one who follows so closely in the footsteps of the rabbi that the dust from rabbi’s sandals is flicked up over the disciple.
“Conforming ourselves day by day to the way of Jesus and to the person of Jesus is the hardest but most important challenge Christians face – because I think that is where our authenticity comes from, and that is where our ability to speak into our community comes from.”
Richardson will succeed Archbishop David Moxon, who is heading to Rome to become the Anglican Communion’s chief ambassador to the Roman Catholic Church – and he will be installed as Archbishop in May, at a time and a place to be confirmed.
As archbishop, he will work alongside Archbishop Brown Turei, who leads Tikanga Maori (the Maori cultural stream of the church) and Archbishop Winston Halapua, who is the bishop of Polynesia.
Richardson and his wife Belinda Holmes will remain in their New Plymouth home. They have two adult children, Josh and Clare.
Richardson was born in Devonport in 1958, and he went to Rangitoto College. He holds BA and BTh degrees from Otago, and has also studied at Tamil Nadu Theological Seminary in South India and at St John’s College in Auckland.
He was ordained a priest in 1982, helped set up a community house and ministry in Glen Innes in 1981, before being sent in 1984 to the parish of Whangarei as an assistant priest.
He was sent from there to Dunedin in 1988 for further theological study, and was appointed warden of Selwyn College at the University of Otago in 1992.
During his seven years at Selwyn College he became increasingly involved in serving the Anglican Church at a provincial level, and in 1999, at the age of 40, he was elected as Bishop of Taranaki.
Al conocerse la elección del papa Francisco, Leo Frade, obispo de la diócesis episcopal del Sureste de Florida emitió una declaración que dice en parte: “El poder del Espíritu Santo no deja de sorprenderme. Hemos visto una y otra vez como Dios continúa transformando y renovando a su iglesia. Como anglicano me uno a los fieles de la Iglesia Católica Romana en darle la bienvenida a su nuevo papa. Prometemos nuestras oraciones por el éxito de su misión evangélica alrededor del mundo”.
Según el periódico Fohla de Sao Paulo en momentos en que el papa Francisco hablaba de “una iglesia pobre que ayude a los pobres”, Dilma Rousseff, presidenta de Brasil, llegó a la ciudad eterna derrochando dinero. Según el diario la presidenta ocupó 30 habitaciones del lujoso Hotel Westin Excelsior y el personal de menor categoría ocupó 22 habitaciones de un hotel cercano. El diario menciona también que la comitiva brasileña rentó un total de 17 automóviles, que incluye siete autos con chófer, un coche de lujo blindado, varias furgonetas, un camión, dos camionetas para el equipaje y hasta un minibús para una estadía de tres días . Todavía no se sabe el costo de esta “empresa misionera”.
En una de las reuniones del Vaticano alguien recordó el buen humor del Beato Juan XXIII cuando dijo “Cualquiera puede ser papa; la prueba de esto es que he llegado a ser uno”.
Bartolomé, patriarca ecuménico de Constantinopla, asistió a los eventos de la entronización del papa Francisco la semana pasada. Su visita es histórica por ser la primera vez que el patriarca visita El Vaticano para una ceremonia como ésta desde el Gran Cisma de 1054 en el que se produjo la mutua excomunión que separó al papa —y a la cristiandad de Occidente—, de los patriarcas y la cristiandad de Oriente, especialmente del principal de ellos, el patriarca ecuménico de Constantinopla. La disputa fue por razones de jurisdicción.
En Venezuela muchos dicen que Nicolás Maduro, el presidente encargado, es su peor enemigo debido a sus errores en sus discursos y sus herejías. Quizás la más irritante dice que Chávez habló con Jesús en el cielo y le dijo que el arzobispo de Buenos Aires sería un buen papa. ¡¡Y el Señor hizo las gestiones necesarias!!
Los biógrafos del difunto presidente Hugo Chávez admiran su facilidad para persuadir a sus seguidores. Lo que no dicen es el efecto de la constante repetición de sus palabras. El Sistema Bolivariano de Comunicación e Información acaba de publicar la siguiente estadística: Durante sus 13 años de gobierno su programa favorito “Aló, Presidente” fue transmitido por cadena nacional 378 veces para un total de 1,656 horas equivalentes a 69 días ininterrumpidos de transmisión.
Yoany Sánchez, la joven bloguera cubana que realiza una gira por varios países del mundo, ha sido recibida en el Congreso de Estados Unidos y la Casa Blanca. Cuando sus palabras han sido refutadas ella explica que los cubanos de Cuba y del exilio no tienen que pensar igual. “Esa es precisamente la democracia, donde hay cabida para diferentes ideas”, explicó a sus interlocutores. Cuando en Madrid un grupo protestó frente al lugar donde se reunía dijo “Me alegra ver eso porque en mi país eso no se permite”.
El clérigo musulmán Adel Almi, a través de una Fatwa, un pronunciamiento legal en el islam de eruditos religiosos, decretó la muerte por lapidación de Amina, una bella joven tunecina de 19 años que se atrevió a difundir en las redes sociales una fotografía suya con el torso descubierto con una frase en árabe en la que abogaba por los derechos de la mujer. Su delito fue mostrar su cuerpo en público.
Gracias a la ayuda de una iglesia en Miami recientemente se celebró en Santiago de Cuba un congreso evangélico al que asistieron unas 9,000 personas. Los predicadores hicieron énfasis en la conversión a Cristo. Muchas personas pasaron al frente.
En la ciudad de Homestead cerca de Miami, falleció el 20 de marzo Jorge Perera Hurtado, séptimo obispo de la Iglesia Episcopal de Cuba. Tenía 78 años y sufría del mal de Alzheimer. Después de su retiro sirvió en la República Dominicana donde fue profesor de latín y griego. Le sobreviven su esposa Teresa y dos hijos adultos. Será recordado por su carácter afable y alegre.
VERDAD. Nada hemos traído a este mundo, y sin duda nada podremos sacar. El SEÑOR dio, y el SEÑOR quitó; bendito sea el Nombre del SEÑOR. 1 Timoteo 6:7
[Episcopal News Service – San Salvador, El Salvador] In 2007, while working in the library and studying psychology at the University of Central America here in San Salvador, Cruz Torres discovered the Episcopal Church.
He was cataloguing “The Anglican Review,” a prospectus from the Anglican Church in Guatemala. As he read it and later researched the Episcopal Church, he learned about the 2003 election of New Hampshire Bishop Gene Robinson, the first openly gay priest elected bishop, and the church’s openness to LGBT people.
“And I wondered if there was an Anglican church here,” he said during a recent interview with ENS.
Torres eventually found La Parroquia San Juan Evangelista de la Iglesia Episcopal Anglicana de El Salvador and, after three Sundays, approached the Rev. Luis Serrano, the church’s rector.
“I told him, ‘Well, Father, I don’t want to lie. I want to tell you the truth. I’m Roman Catholic. I’ve read about LGBT rights in the Episcopal Church. I am gay. I am a Christian, and I want to live my spiritual life in a place that doesn’t damn me,’” said Torres, during the interview at San Juan Evangelista.
Serrano responded: “Our doors are open.”
It was November 2007. Not long after Torres arrived, a male couple found the church. And then came another gay man and another, and eventually the number grew to six. Bishop of El Salvador Martin Barahona suggested that the group help the diocese begin a ministry on sexual diversity, but the group declined, Torres said. “We said, ‘No, El Salvador isn’t ready.’”
Two years later, the group was meeting regularly on Saturday afternoons and had doubled in size.
“We were 12, and we started to talk about our experiences in the [other] churches, and we said maybe it was time to call and invite the people we know,” Torres said. “Half of the people who came wanted to change [their sexual orientation] but that wasn’t our vision or our mission.”
The Anglican/Episcopal Church of El Salvador is one of five churches in La Iglesia Anglicana de la Region Central de America, which also includes Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Panama and Guatemala, that have formed a covenant with the Episcopal Church. El Salvador’s diversity ministry is the only one of its kind in the region’s Episcopal churches, said Torres.
(Two other full-inclusion ministries exist in El Salvador, one in the Metropolitan Community Church and the other in a Protestant evangelical church.)
That is not to say the situation for LGBT people is particularly different in El Salvador. Conservative sectors, including in the church and the media, call homosexuality bad and a sin, and the families of LGBT people are made to believe that, which affects how they sometimes treat their sons and daughters, said Torres.
“Their families believe that because of what they are told by fanatics,” he said. LGBT people must demonstrate to family members how they’d like to be treated, he added. “That is the principal thing we do here [in the ministry]; people need to be fine with themselves.”
The group’s mission was not to make gay people straight, as is the mission of some churches, but rather to help members work through their feelings, Torres explained. “We said: ‘God loves you as you are. If you are gay, it is because of His will, and you have a mission in life.’”
Since forming the Ministerio de Diversidad Sexual in 2009, a diocesewide ministry, the group has grown to between 25 and 30 people – Roman Catholics, Methodists, Mormons, Evangelicals — many of whom have been received into the church. But evangelizing, Torres pointed out, isn’t the group’s mission either.
Despite advances in human rights, LGBT Salvadorans and those across the region often face discrimination and violence, topics recently addressed during the first-ever conference for LGBT human rights in El Salvador, held March 14-15 at the University of Central America.
The group from San Juan Evangelista was well represented at the conference hosted by Asistencia Legal para la Diversidad Sexual El Salvador and the SHARE Foundation, a nonprofit human-and-civil-rights-advocacy organization. More than 1,000 people attended the two-day conference, including members of the Committee on Gender Diversity of Parroquia San Juan Evangelista de la Iglesia Episcopal Anglicana de El Salvador.
“This is the first time this has happened in El Salvador, a place where to be openly gay, lesbian or transgendered could get you killed,” said Olivia Amadon. She attended the conference as a representative of Foundation Cristosal, a faith-based human rights and community-development organization that has its beginnings in the Episcopal and Anglican churches. “So it’s very inspiring to see organizations that support LGBT rights come together and put a face on the issues.”
The conference included speakers, panels and discussions addressing: what it means to be LGBT in El Salvador; community empowerment through the political process; inclusive faith communities as promoters of human rights; using international law to combat impunity; and access to justice as a human right.
(In the last few years, the United Nations has begun to frame LGBT rights as basic human rights.)
Speakers and panelists, Amadon said, talked of LGBT rights as human rights that should be protected, but the question remains: “Where does the conversation go from here?”
The government of El Salvador’s executive branch has passed a decree banning discrimination based on sexual identity in the public sector, but that decree doesn’t extend to the private sector and can easily be overturned, and the laws protecting women and children from violence don’t extend to LGBT people, said Amadon.
Even though the police are already receiving sensitivity trainings, transgender women continue to be beaten in the streets, said Amadon. “The law won’t solve discrimination, but there would be less impunity when violations do happen.”
Passing a law is one step; the next is promoting awareness so homophobia and systemic discrimination decline, she said.
It is a hate that has been around for generations, said Salvador Ramos, 22, in an interview at the conference.
“It’s about changing the psychology of the masses,” said Nestor Urquilla, 41, adding that at most there are 3,000 Episcopalians in El Salvador (the total population is 6 million).
Besides being the first conference on LGBT rights in El Salvador, the March gathering was significant in making clear a situation that needs to be changed, Torres said. That change cannot come from government, but through the grassroots efforts of society, he added.
In general, straight members of the Episcopal Church in El Salvador have been supportive of the group, but that doesn’t mean there hasn’t been resistance, said Wendy Castillo, 28, a member of the diversity group.
“It hasn’t all been rose-colored,” she said, adding that there is still work to be done.
When Torres and the others from the LGBT community first began attending services at San Juan Evangelista, the parish was open to their presence, but two or three families left, said Serrano.
Torres, now 30, first revealed his sexual identity during confession with a Roman Catholic priest when he was 18. Even though the priest didn’t reject him, he said, he didn’t feel welcome in the church and was without a spiritual home from 2005 to 2007, when he found the Episcopal Church.
“It’s God’s will that I am here,” Torres said. “I accept myself and am happy with me, since I found that last piece of my heart.”
“I was happy being gay, but there was this last thing in my heart,” Torres concluded. “When I came here I could be me, being Christian and being gay.”
– Lynette Wilson is an editor and reporter for Episcopal News Service. She is currently based in San Salvador, El Salvador.
[Diocese of Egypt] Millions of people in the Anglican Communion are focusing at this time on the Enthronement of the new Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby. For us, Canterbury is of great historical significance because it was the starting point of Anglicanism.
I am among many who appreciated the contribution of Archbishop Rowan Williams, the former Archbishop of Canterbury, during the last ten years. I am also sure that he will continue to contribute through his new post as a Master of Magdalene College, Cambridge.
It is our duty now to pray for Archbishop Justin as he is about to carry a heavy responsibility for the years to come and without God’s strength and grace it will be difficult, and even impossible, to cope with all of these responsibilities.
One of his responsibilities is towards the Anglican Communion which is currently suffering from impaired and broken relationships. Archbishop Justin will definitely need to accurately diagnose the reasons for these divisions in order to come up with the correct treatment. One of the first challenges he will face is to understand how the nature of the Anglican Communion has changed in the last decades. Statistics show that there are now more Anglicans in the “South” than in the “North.” There are also big theological gaps between the “South” and the “North.” The understanding of this new nature should help the new Archbishop to use a more collegial and participatory approach, rather than a central approach,when dealing with matters of the Communion.
In regard to the theological gap, it is indeed important that the church learn how to be relevant to the modern society where we live, but without adopting the values of the society that clearly contradict Scripture, our tradition and reason. Part of our DNA as Anglicans is a desire for unity and ecumenism. For this reason, we should not act in a way that widens the gap between us and our ecumenical partners.
With ever-increasing pressure from the society, the church needs not to be politically correct at the expense of the truth. The church resisted this from the early centuries and preferred to be faithful to the Gospel, even if this led to persecution and martyrdom. We are called to be“salt” and “light.” In other words, we are called to be distinctive. The modern societies of the “West” or “North” are pushing many issues, including same-sex marriages and civil partnerships. Should the church yield to the pressure of these societies and compromise the truth? I personally think that these issues are superficial symptoms of a much deeper illness which attempts to shake the foundation of our faith. This illness puts into question the essentials of faith like the crucifixion, the resurrection, and the doctrine of salvation. It ignores the primacy of Scripture and 2,000 years of church tradition. It is a spirit of individualism and cultural pride that ignores the fact that the whole truth is revealed to the whole church.
In both the theological and numerical differences, we need to affirm our interdependence as Anglican churches. What affects all should be decided by all. There is a great need to recover the conciliar nature of the Anglican Communion that is practiced through the Lambeth Conferences and the Primates Meetings. Losing our conciliar ethos will lead to disunity as churches take uncoordinated, independent and unilateral decisions. I here remember what Cardinal Ivan Dias said to us in his address to the Lambeth 2008 conference,“ when we live myopically in the fleeting present, oblivious of our past heritage and apostolic traditions, we could well be suffering from spiritual Alzheimer’s ” and ” when we behave in a disorderly manner, going whimsically our own way, without any coordination with the head or the other members of our community, it could be ecclesial Parkinson’s.
“Our Anglican Communion is a real gift from God and we long to see it united and playing its important and unique role within the one, holy, catholic and apostolic church.
The Most Rev. Dr. Mouneer Hanna Anis
Bishop of the Episcopal / Anglican Diocese of Egyptwith North Africa and the Horn of Africa
Archbishop Justin Welby
Grace and peace to you from God our Father and The Lord Jesus Christ.
We greet you on this day of celebration and assure you and your family of our prayers for your future ministry.
We are grateful for this opportunity to worship in Canterbury Cathedral and be reminded of our historic faith that is grounded in the revealed Word of God.
We encourage you to stay true to the ‘faith once delivered to the saints’ and as you do we will stand with you for the sake of Christ.
We do look forward to a future opportunity to meet and discuss how we can work together.
To Him be all the glory.
The Most Revd Dr. Eliud Wabukala Anglican Church of Kenya
The Most Revd Nicholas Okoh Church of Nigeria (Anglican Communion)
The Most Revd Stanley Ntagali Church of the Province of Uganda
The Most Revd Onesphore Rwaje Province de l’Eglise Anglicane au Rwanda
The Most Revd Daniel Deng Bul The Episcopal Church of the Sudan
The Most Revd Hector Zavala Iglesia Anglicana del Cono Sur de America
[World Council of Churches -- Press Release] The World Council of Churches (WCC) general secretary Rev. Dr Olav Fykse Tveit attended the enthronement of Archbishop Justin Welby in England, expressing “heart-felt congratulations” and “profound prayers for his new ministry”.
He joined church leaders, political figures, heads of faith communities, and members of the Church of England, as Archbishop Welby was installed in his new ministry at Canterbury Cathedral.
Archbishop Justin Welby was enthroned as the 105th Archbishop of Canterbury, Primate of All England, and spiritual leader of the worldwide Anglican Communion on 21 March at Canterbury Cathedral.
In late 2012, Archbishop Welby, then bishop of Durham, was appointed the primate of the Church of England, which is a founding member of the WCC.
“We admire Archbishop Welby’s commitment to lead the worldwide Anglican Communion. Our hope is that the Anglican tradition and communion of churches will continue to make significant contributions to the ecumenical movement, as they always have,” said Tveit.
“On behalf of the WCC member churches, we look forward to working with Archbishop Welby to build upon our mutual relations, as well as strengthening our efforts for peace, justice, reconciliation and inter-religious dialogue,” he added.
At his inauguration, Archbishop Welby stressed the importance of reconciliation and peace, reflecting on the significant role that the Christian churches have played in the transformation of society, both in England and around the world, through sharing the “good news” of the gospel. “There is every possible reason for optimism about the future of Christian faith in our world and in this country. Optimism does not come from us, but because to us and to all people Jesus comes and says “Take heart, it is I, do not be afraid,” he said.
“We are called to step out of the comfort of our own traditions and places, and go into the waves, reaching for the hand of Christ. Let us provoke each other to heed the call of Christ, to be clear in our declaration of Christ, committed in prayer to Christ, and we will see a world transformed,” concluded Archbishop Welby.
[St. James Episcopal Church – press release] Baltimore, Maryland political leaders and other dignitaries will be in attendance at the 10th annual ecumenical Palm Sunday Blessing of the City event.
In honor of this special anniversary, there will be a procession around the City Hall building immediately following the prayer service as part of the event. St. James’ Episcopal Church at Lafayette Square and the Lafayette Square churches are reaching out to all communities to join in prayer and fellowship at Baltimore’s City Hall. Young people from the Lafayette Square churches will offer prayers for our city leaders and residents.
The Lafayette Square Churches participating are to include Enon Baptist Church, Macedonia Baptist Church, Metropolitan United Methodist Church, St. James’ Episcopal Church, St. John’s A.M.E. Church, The [Episcopal] Cathedral of the Incarnation and the Greater Immanuel Faith Temple.
The service begins at 9:30 a.m. and is expected to last 30 minutes.
Baltimore is a great city. However, like other major metropolitan areas we have many serious social challenges. The Lafayette Square churches in our area recognize the tasks facing our city leaders, our citizens, and our children. We will gather in the front of city hall to prayer for our city leaders and residents. We do so in a tradition that is deeply rooted in our faith. We will offer prayers to the city on Palm Sunday, which was the day Jesus Christ victoriously entered the City of Jerusalem. Through prayer we offer support to our city in its efforts to triumph over the sins of our community.
[Episcopal Peace Fellowship -- Press Release] An active group of six young women explored issues of homelessness and immigration during their Urban Pilgrimage of five days in mid-March here. Two other Episcopal Peace Fellowship Urban pilgrimages took place in New York City and Santa Paula, Calif.
The Austin group spent significant time at the Mary House Catholic Worker – the only non-profit in Central Texas where indigent people with serious medical problems can stay without charge until they die in hospice care or become well enough to leave.
The Austin pilgrims then went to Flo’s Place – a community center for impoverished neighborhood children – where they joined several youth groups from Austin churches in cleaning the grounds and fixing what was broken. Flo, who has run the center with donations for several years, tells the story about once receiving several new sneakers and giving them to the children. Sadly, some of the parents sold them for drug money.
The next day’s visit was to Casa Marianella – a three-plus-decades-old immigration center for folks from Mexico and Central America whose status is both legal and not. Casa has six houses close to each other in East Austin where guests receive food, lodging and, if needed, legal guidance to become citizens.
The pilgrims also explored the Mobile Loaves and Fishes food ministry that feeds Austin’s neediest where they are gathered rather than making them come to a center.
“Now in its sixth year, our Spring Pilgrimages give college students and other young adults the opportunity to learn from both the persons who live on the edges of our society, as well as those who daily help them,” said the Rev. Allison Liles, EPF interim director. “It is a meaningful alternative to the Spring Break experience and energizes the pilgrims to return to their home towns to do the same,” she said.
“Each year I learn something new,” said Heather Strickland, who directed Urban Pilgrimage Austin this March – her third trip to Austin from Ludlow, Mass. “Hospitals increasingly tend to dismiss homeless patients earlier than they should because these folks have no insurance,” said Strickland who works as a rape crisis center counselor.
Half of the Austin pilgrims – Lia Closel, Rachel Snyder and Kayleigh Chapman – were sponsored by St. Alban’s Episcopal Church in Arlington, Texas. Snyder and Chapman took part in last year’s Austin pilgrimage. Sarah Watkins from St. James’ Episcopal Church in Austin and Teresa Bennett Pasquale of St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, Delray Beach, Fla. rounded out the group.
The New York City pilgrimage explored the lingering effects of Mega-storm Sandy on its still battered residents.
The group walked through a devastated neighborhood where residents came out of their damaged homes “to wave and encourage us. The image that lingers in my mind is of a woman silently sobbing behind her storm door as we passed – covering her face with her hands,” one pilgrim wrote. Another post noted that many of the folks involved in post-Sandy relief are also Occupy Wall Street veterans – “It has been really awesome to see people look out for and take care of one another,” another pilgrim wrote.
Food, Faith & Farming – the third EPF Urban pilgrimage – will explore issues of immigration, food sustainability and eco-justice at the Abundant Farms in Santa Paula, Calif., in late March.
The Episcopal Peace Fellowship has championed peace, nonviolence and social justice issues since its founding on Armistice Day 1939. Read more about EPF – http://epfnational.org
[St. Mark’s Church in-the-Bowery – press release] St. Mark’s Church in-the-Bowery in New York will provide worshippers with a unique, spiritually moving Good Friday experience with its annual Good Friday Blues.
The service uses American blues music to recreate the Passion story of Jesus. Framed by powerfully rendered blues and gospel music, Good Friday Blues tells the story of the betrayal and death of Jesus as written in the Gospel of John.
This year’s performance features an impressive array of nationally renowned musicians and performers, including Tony Award winner Ann Duquesnay and St. Mark’s Music Director Jeannine Otis. Duquesnay won the 1996 Tony for as best featured actress in a musical for her role in Bring in ‘Da Noise, Bring in ‘Da Funk, for which she wrote the lyrics and the music.
The service will be March 29 from noon to 3 p.m. at St. Mark’s Church in-the-Bowery, at Second Avenue and East Tenth Street.
The Good Friday Blues are a unique Good Friday service, juxtaposing images of slavery and Jim Crow against the familiar Passion narrative through American blues music.
Even as churches shrink across the United States, St. Mark’s Church-in-the-Bowery continues to grow rapidly right in the heart of New York City. The church’s commitment to diversity as well as its dedication to marrying art and beauty with spirituality creates soulful worship experiences and a dynamic congregation. An important space for the New York arts scene, St. Mark’s provides worshippers an opportunity to connect more deeply spiritually through music, dance, poetry and more.
This year’s performance marks the 12th year of this liturgy, [which began as] a collaboration between the Rt. Rev. Catherine S. Roskam, [who was then] bishop suffragan of New York; Otis, and the St. Mark’s Choir.
Tony Award Winner and Grammy nominee Duquesnay and composer-guitarist Ana Hernandez will join the talents of the St. Mark’s Choir and the Good Friday Blues Band. Liturgy dancers include Dawn Crandell and a dancer from the Vissi Dance Theater. Co-narrating the Passion are Vinie Burrows and Amelia V. Anderson. Leading insightful and thought-provoking meditations throughout the service will be the Rev. Winnie Varghese, rector of St. Mark’s, and the Rev. Richard Witt and Nell Gibson.
St. Mark’s is in New York City’s East Village, at the intersection of 10th Street and Second Avenue. The property has been the site of continuous Christian worship for more than three and a half centuries and is the second-oldest church building in Manhattan. St. Mark’s has a long history of supporting the arts and social justice, dating back to the 1920s. Today the church is a progressive Episcopal congregation and continues to serve as a center for modern dance, experimental theater and poetry and as a community gathering place for the Lower East Side.
[Episcopal Church Office of Public Affairs] The Joint Nominating Committee for the Presiding Bishop (JNCPB) kicked off its work on March 18-20 with a conversation with Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori and a mapping of the committee’s future work.
Meeting at the Barbara C. Harris Camp and Conference Center in NH, JNCPB is charged to present a slate of no fewer than three nominees for the office of Presiding Bishop to a joint session of the General Convention 2015 in Salt Lake City, UT (Diocese of UT).
In addition to the Presiding Bishop, Bishop Clay Matthews of the Office of Pastoral Development offered insights and information to assist in their tasks.
JNCPB member Nina Salmon, Province III, commented, “It was important for me to hear about how much the world and the church have changed in Bishop Katharine’s tenure and to think about how much they will change in the next nine years. I was struck by her description of the global role of The Episcopal Church.”
Additionally, suggestions received in response to questions recently presented to the church by JNCPB helped the subcommittees as to consider the following:
• Creating educational materials about the history and role of the Presiding Bishop
• Soliciting input from the church at-large about the state of the church and what qualities of leadership to look for in the next Presiding Bishop
• Developing a profile
• Timeline and specifics of the nominating process
• Pastoral care of nominees, families and dioceses
• Transition issues
• Communications, both internal to the committee and from the committee to the church and beyond.
“An invitation for churchwide input will come around June 1, accompanied by educational materials which will explore the history and the role of the Presiding Bishop,” noted Polly Getz of Province VIII, facilitator of the survey and profile subcommittee. “We hope to have synthesized what we have gathered and to be able to distribute our profile by early December.”
“Nominations will open March 1, 2014,” added JNCPB co-chair Sally Johnson, Province IV.
“We are well on our way,” commented co-chair Bishop Tom Shaw, Province I. “It is a privilege to work with people willing to give so much of their time and energy and creativity for the work of the church.”
[Trinity Episcopal Cathedral, Omaha – press release] Trinity Episcopal Cathedral will offer “Last Call Omaha” during Holy Week, a new series of late night worship experiences for those who are searching for “real world” spiritual dialogue and fellowship.
Held in the cathedral basement, Last Call Omaha will feature discussions and conversations about Holy Week topics, in addition to guest speakers from Food Bank of the Heartland, Siena/Francis House, and the YMCA. Last Call will begin at 10:30 p.m. on Maundy Thursday (March 28), and at midnight on both Good Friday (March 29) and Easter Vigil (March 30).
The Very Rev. Joan Pritcher, dean in the interim of Trinity Cathedral, says “I have, for some time, wanted to explore the idea of a late-night worship gathering. I was becoming increasingly aware that not everyone is looking for a Sunday morning or early evening experience. In addition, I have seen more interest, particularly among young adults, in thoughtful worship, meaningful conversation, and in clearly defined opportunities to serve; they want to wrestle with difficult questions and give something back.”
Although held at Trinity Cathedral, Last Call is non-denominational and open to all who question and seek thoughtful community.
The Right Rev. J. Scott Barker, Episcopal Bishop of Nebraska, is very enthused about Last Call. “It’s exciting that the ancient and mysterious story of Easter is being remembered and celebrated in such a creative new way. I can’t wait to see how this midnight adventure turns out.”
Adds Dean Pritcher, “The central three liturgies of Holy Week – Maundy Thursday, Good Friday and Easter Vigil – are a great setting to introduce this dynamic new program. The Last Call team has sought to create a rhythm that fosters new discovery of the wonder and power of the Easter story.”
Each evening, representatives from area outreach organizations will be present to share information about their service to those in need. On Maundy Thursday, staff from the Food Bank of the Heartland will examine food insecurity. Good Friday, the topic will be “Homeless in Omaha,” presented by the Siena/Francis House Homeless Shelter, and at the Easter Vigil, Claire Herzog from the YMCA will discuss the YMCA’s “Ready in 5,” a school readiness program for refugees and their families. An on-site service project will follow the presentation each night.
While no alcohol will be served during Last Call, spaghetti will be provided on Thursday night, and dessert will be served on Saturday night.
For more information, please contact Dean Joan Pritcher by calling 404-550-4070 or at firstname.lastname@example.org. Information can also be found on Facebook here.
[Episcopal Public Policy Network] As we reach the climax of a Lenten season in which the Episcopal Public Policy Network has examined cycles of violence in our culture from a variety of perspectives, today we specifically consider the issue of gun violence that has grasped the attention of so many Americans. As Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori said in Senate testimony earlier this year, the victims of gun violence “are members of our families, religious congregations, and communities … We all share a responsibility to examine the many facets of cycles of violence in our society, and to discern equally comprehensive responses that will address the causes, means, and effects of violence.”
In addition to the Presiding Bishop’s recent testimony to Congress, The Episcopal Church and its leadership have said a great deal about gun violence in recent months. In February, the Executive Council passed a comprehensive resolution urging American policymakers to examine cultural attitudes toward violence, create meaningful federal support for mental healthcare, and pass common-sense gun laws. In the wake of that action, the President and Vice President of the House of Deputies, the Rev. Gay Clark Jennings and the Hon. Byron Rushing, wrote to all deputies urging leadership on these issues from a variety of standpoints. Finally, the House of Bishops issued a “word to the Church” on gun violence earlier this month urging churchwide conversation and action on these issues.
We urge you to read and pray upon each of these important statements. Once we’ve done that, how might we respond? Three specific steps come to mind.
First, consider how you might join the effort of the bishops of the Episcopal Diocese of Connecticut, who are coming to Washington next week, Holy Week, for a public undertaking of the ancient Stations of the Cross between the White House and the Capitol. The procession will stop at memorials, government buildings and works of art to offer prayers for an end to violence, the culture of violence, and the economic conditions that spawn violence. We expect that bishops, clergy, and laity from across the United States will come to Washington to join the observance. While it may not be possible for you to join this observance in person, the bishops of the Diocese of Connecticut have made the liturgy available online . It can be used in local congregations, in small groups, or for private devotion. For Christians, prayer is always the appropriate grounding for all action!
Second, tell Congress that it must do a better job to support mental healthcare in the United States. This means making it accessible and available without stigma to all Americans, including those who have suffered trauma as a result of exposure to violence or violent environments as well as those suffering from mental illness. The approach represented in the bipartisan “Excellence in Mental Health Act,” introduced recently in the Senate — providing community-based mental-healthcare providers the same opportunity to access federal funds as providers of physical healthcare — is a promising place to begin.
Finally, tell Congress to pass common-sense gun laws that respect the right of law-abiding citizens to own guns but seek to keep weapons out of the hands of children and those who would use them to commit violent crime. As expressed by the Executive Council resolution last month, the Episcopal Church supports all three measures passed recently by the Senate Judiciary Committee: tightened restrictions on military-style assault weapons, more comprehensive background checks for gun purchases, and a curb on federal trafficking of guns. Unfortunately, reports this week indicate that the full Senate may be permitted to vote only on the final of these three provisions. Urge the Senate – as well as the House – to adopt a different course and allow all three common-sense measures to come to a vote, and urge lawmakers to support their passage.
The Prayer Book collect for Tuesday in Holy Week addresses God, who “by the passion of your blessed Son…made an instrument of shameful death the means of life.” Though our hearts have been broken in recent months by the depths to which violence harms our communities, and though our minds have often struggled to see redemption in this midst of this brokenness, let us honor the living as well as the dead with action that seeks to bring life, and to bring it more abundantly.
[There is a video that cannot be displayed in this feed. Visit the blog entry to see the video.]
[Editors' note: Story updated at 2:25 p.m. EST with quotes from some members of the Episcopal Church delegation.]
[Episcopal News Service -- Canterbury, England] One-time oil executive and former Bishop of Durham Justin Welby was formally enthroned (twice) as the 105th archbishop of Canterbury on March 21 during a two-hour ceremony that blended an ancient liturgy with a few modern twists.
With Welby’s enthronement, he joins a succession spanning more than 1,400 years, dating back to 597 AD when St. Augustine became the first archbishop of Canterbury.
Anglican Communion and ecumenical leaders, members of the British royal family, including His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales and Her Royal Highness The Duchess of Cornwall, and senior representatives of the U.K. government, including Prime Minister David Cameron, were among the 2000 invited guests attending the service at Canterbury Cathedral in England’s southeastern county of Kent.
The U.S.-based Episcopal Church was represented by Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori, as one of the Anglican Communion’s 38 primates, and her canon, the Rev. Chuck Robertson. Bishops Shannon Johnston of Virginia, Ian Douglas of Connecticut and Andy Doyle of Texas also participated in the enthronement, or inauguration. Jefferts Schori noted during an ENS interview that Welby had attended the Episcopal Church’s General Convention in 2009 and House of Bishops meeting in March 2012 and that people who spoke with him appreciated his good humor and depth of spirit.
Rob Radtke attended the service as president of Episcopal Relief & Development, as did heads of other Anglican Communion relief agencies.
The service began at 3 p.m. local time (11 a.m. EST) when the Very Rev. Robert Willis, dean of Canterbury Cathedral, read out a letter from Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, supreme governor of the Church of England, authorizing the dean and cathedral representatives to go to the church’s West Door to greet the archbishop.
In a famous tradition, the archbishop banged on the West Door three times with his pastoral staff, and the dean opened the door to welcome him.[There is a video that cannot be displayed in this feed. Visit the blog entry to see the video.]
The archbishop was then greeted by Evangeline Kanagasooriam, a young member of the Anglican Communion and student at The King’s School in Canterbury, who asked Welby questions about his purpose for seeking admission to the cathedral.
Archbishop of York John Sentamu introduced the Declaration of Assent, used at the beginning of every new ordained ministry in the Church of England, during which Welby affirmed his belief in the faith “which is revealed in the Holy Scriptures and set forth in the catholic creeds…”
In one of the service’s innovative touches, Welby then signed an ecumenical covenant with two of the five co-presidents of Churches Together in England: His Eminence Archbishop Gregorios of Thyateira and Great Britain and the Rev. Michael Heaney, moderator of the Free Churches Group.
Welby, 57, swore an Oath of Faithfulness on the historic Canterbury Gospels (believed to have been written in Italy in the 5th or 6th century and presented by Pope Gregory the Great to St. Augustine in 597 AD) and made an Act of Commitment to strive for the visible unity of Christ’s Church.
The archbishop was then enthroned in two seats – the Diocesan Throne and the Chair of St. Augustine. The two enthronements formalized Welby’s multi-faceted role as bishop of the Diocese of Canterbury, Primate of All England and spiritual leader of the Anglican Communion. The cathedral dean installed him as Primate of All England but, perhaps most significantly, the Ven. Sheila Anne Watson, archdeacon of Canterbury, became the first woman to install an archbishop as bishop of the See of Canterbury.
Archbishop Bernard Ntahoturi of Burundi blessed the newly installed archbishop of Canterbury in French and Welby responded with an Act of Commitment to the Anglican Communion.
Following the greeting of peace, a Ghanaian song, Gbeh Kpa Kpa Ba (A New Beginning), was performed as African dancers led the archbishop to the Nave pulpit to read the Gospel of Matthew 14: 22-3, in which Christ tells Peter to leave his storm-rocked boat and come across the water to him, before returning to preach from the Chair of St. Augustine.
“[T]he church transforms society when it takes the risks of renewal in prayer, of reconciliation. And of confident declaration of the good news of Jesus Christ,” he said during his sermon. “There is every possible reason for optimism about the future of Christian faith in our world and in this country. Optimism does not come from us, but because to us and to all people Jesus comes and says ‘Take heart, it is I, do not be afraid.’”
“We are called to step out of the comfort of our own traditions and places, and go into the waves, reaching for the hand of Christ. Let us provoke each other to heed the call of Christ, to be clear in our declaration of Christ, committed in prayer to Christ, and we will see a world transformed.”
The full text of this sermon is here.
Jefferts Schori described Welby’s sermon as moving.
“The archbishop preached about the Christian grounding of society … He also spoke about reconciliation … That’s what Jesus was about – his incarnation, life ministry, death and resurrection is about reconciliation,” she told ENS following the service. “It is something of which the world continues to be in great need. It is really what all people of faith are called to be and do in this world.”
Another innovation in the ancient ceremony followed the sermon as five Anglicans each placed on the High Altar a symbol representing different regions of the communion. Anglican Bishop in Jerusalem Suheil Dawani brought a cross made of Jerusalem olive wood. Adele Finney, executive director of the Anglican Church of Canada’s Primate’s World Relief and Development Fund, brought blessed water from various parts of the Americas which she mixed at the altar as a symbol of unity. Real Kewasis, a Mother’s Union International trustee from Kenya, brought traditional vessels for bread and water or milk. The Rev. Peter Koon, provincial secretary of the Hong Kong Sheng Kung Hui, placed a pound of rice on the altar. The Rev. Desiré Mukanirwa, from the Anglican Church in the Democratic Republic of Congo, brought a wooden carving showing a volcano and people working to represent the desire for peace.
“The sense of the breadth and depth and diversity of the Anglican Communion was right through the whole service — in its music, the dancing, the salutations brought from the corners of the world. It was very much a communion service,” said Douglas, a member of the Anglican Communion Standing Committee and the Episcopal Church’s episcopal representative on the Anglican Consultative Council.
“Archbishop Justin’s key commitments were very well represented in the service, specifically in the emphasis on reconciliation, and the fact that in Jesus we can all be reconciled, and that the gift of diversity that we all embody in the many different races and traditions and cultures from which we come as the body of Christ is a gift that we can give to the world.”
Doyle, who is a member of the board of directors for the Compass Rose Society, an association that supports the programs and ministries of the archbishop of Canterbury, agreed. “It really was a service of the communion,” he said. “It was very clear that he has an eye to the greater church and its mission and ministry and hope for health and vitality.”
Robertson said that “today was a day of hope, of reaching out to one another,” adding that Welby “did a beautiful job of helping us to think about what we can do together … and that gives me great hope for the future.”
For Episcopal Relief & Development’s Radtke, what struck him most about the service “was how personal it was to Archbishop Justin.”
Radtke said that his invitation to the enthronement, along with his relief and development counterparts in Australia and Canada, “shows the commitment that the archbishop and Lambeth Palace have to … alleviating global poverty, which is going to be a critically important focus for all of our agencies.”
The cathedral choir performed Benjamin Britten’s Te Deum in C, and a new composition, Listen, Listen, O My Child, by contemporary composer Michael Berkeley, commissioned for the service by the archbishop’s mother and stepfather.
Berkeley’s composition is set to the opening words of the Rule of St. Benedict, chosen for the saint’s significance on this chosen day (March 21 is the feast day of St. Benedict), for the cathedral (a thousand years ago, it was a Benedictine monastery), and for Welby (who is an oblate of the Order of Benedict).
Dean Willis, in his welcome printed in the Order of Service, said: “Our worship never ceases to reflect this season of Passiontide but it is also an act of enormous celebration when we are able to surround Justin our Archbishop and also his family with prayer, encouragement and affection.”
Much of the music for the service was chosen by Welby, Willis said.
During the procession before the service, the cathedral choir performed several anthems and motets. They included Salvator Mundi, by 16th century English composer Thomas Tallis, who served as a vicar choral in the choir at Canterbury Cathedral before the Reformation; Justorum Animae, by Sir Charles Villiers Stanford; Ave Jesu Christe, by Peter Philips; Deep River, by Sir Michael Tippett; Set Me as a Seal Upon Thine Heart, by Sir William Walton; Vox Dei, by Philip Wilby; and Os Justi, by Anton Bruckner.
German Lutheran baroque composer Johann Sebastian Bach featured prominently in the processional organ repertoire, with cathedral organists performing Prelude in E Flat (BWV 552), Trio Sonata in G (BWV 530), and Prelude and Fugue in C (BWV 545). Organ music at the end of the service included Marcia (from Symphonie III), by Charles-Marie Widor; Fantasie sur le Te Deum et Guirlandes Alleluiatiques, by Charles Tournemire; and Grand Dialogue in C, by Louis Marchand.
Hymns during the service included Come down, O Love Divine; Great is thy Faithfulness; O God, my Father; I am the Light whose Brightness Shines; Come, Holy Ghost, our Souls Inspire; The Church’s one Foundation; and In Christ Alone my Hope is Found.
The Rt. Rev. Jana Jeruma Grinberga, Lutheran Church of Great Britain, read the Old Testament lesson (Ruth 2: 1-2 and 15-20) and Roman Catholic Archbishop of Westminster Vincent Nichols, read the New Testament lesson (2 Corinthians 5: 16-21). Both Jeruma Grinberga and Nichols are among the five co-presidents of Churches Together in England. The archbishop of Canterbury is the fifth.
Prayers were offered in remembrance of the anniversaries of the death of St. Benedict, and of 16th century Archbishop of Canterbury Thomas Cranmer, whose Book of Common Prayer shaped the worship of the Church of England. The Episcopal Church’s calendar commemorates Cranmer on March 21.
The vestments worn by Welby during the service were originally designed and made 21 years ago by Juliet Hemingray for the late Bishop of Peterborough Ian Cundy. They were bought as a gift for Cundy from the students and staff at Cranmer Hall, Durham, where Welby was a student.
“Archbishop Justin wears them in gratitude to a teacher and bishop who had a formative impact on his ministry,” according to a press release from Lambeth Palace.
The design is based on Jesus’ first miracle at the wedding in Cana. “The blues and purples represent water changing into wine, as well as baptismal waters,” the release said. “The three fish suggest the Holy Trinity, while serving as a reminder to Christians to be partners in mission as fishers of men.”
In the lead-up to his enthronement, Welby embarked on a six-day prayer pilgrimage to various cities under his jurisdiction throughout the midlands and the south of England. (The archbishop of York overseas Church of England dioceses in the north.)
In a recent interview for Anglican World magazine, Welby said that in his new role he, with the rest of the Anglican Communion, is faced with “a challenge for the imagination.”
“What do we mean by the Anglican Communion, and how does it contribute as a blessing to the world in which we live in its present circumstances?” he asked. “That challenge to the imagination is something that is constantly renewed and we need to be very reactive to it, and not allow ourselves to get bogged down in looking inward.”
Following months of anticipation and media speculation, Downing Street confirmed on Nov. 9, 2012 that the Queen had approved the nomination of Welby as the 105th archbishop of Canterbury.
Church of England bishops are appointed rather than elected, with a 16-member Crown Nominations Commission putting forward two names — a preferred candidate and a second candidate — to Downing Street. The U.K. prime minister then seeks approval from the British monarch.
Before his ordination to the priesthood in 1992, Welby studied law and history at Cambridge University and then spent 11 years as an executive in the oil industry. After a decade in parish ministry, he was appointed a canon residentiary, and later sub-dean, of Coventry Cathedral. He served as dean of Liverpool Cathedral from 2007-2011.
As bishop of Durham, the fourth-most-senior position in the Church of England to which he was consecrated in October 2011, Welby was automatically granted a seat in the House of Lords.
Welby succeeds the Most Rev. Rowan Williams, who stepped down at the end of 2012 after serving as the 104th archbishop of Canterbury since February 2003. Williams is now master of Magdalene College, Cambridge.
Welby is married to Caroline and they have five children, ranging in age from mid-teens to late 20s.
The inauguration’s order of service is here.
A Press Association photo gallery from the service is here.
– Matthew Davies is an editor/reporter for the Episcopal News Service.
[Episcopal News Service] Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori reflects on the enthronement of the 105th Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby.
[Episcopal News Service] Rob Radtke, president of Episcopal Relief & Development, reflects on the enthronement of the 105th Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby.
[Episcopal News Service] The Rev. Canon Chuck Robertson, canon to Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori, reflects on the enthronement of the 105th Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby.
[Episcopal News Service] Bishop Andy Doyle of the Episcopal Diocese of Texas reflects on the enthronement of the 105th Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby.
[Episcopal News Service] Bishop Ian Douglas of the Episcopal Diocese of Connecticut reflects on the enthronement of the 105th Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby.
[Episcopal Relief & Development] This month’s Power of Partnerships celebrates the efforts of the Anglican Diocese of Bo, Episcopal Relief & Development’s partner in southern Sierra Leone, to alleviate hunger, promote health and raise awareness about gender equity and good governance. March is Women’s History Month, but Episcopal Relief & Development and its local partners strive year-round to engage both men and women in examining and improving how they work together to build a thriving community. The Diocese of Bo is also an implementing partner for the organization’s NetsforLife® malaria prevention partnership, which has distributed over 11 million nets and reached more than 30 million people since it began in 2006.
Please note that the Power of Partnerships and Friends of Episcopal Relief & Development web features are now on an alternating schedule. The next Friends of Episcopal Relief & Development will be published in April.
The Power of Partnerships and Friends of Episcopal Relief & Development web features present stories about the agency’s partners in the US and worldwide. Visit www.er-d.org to read past installments, find information about our programs or make a contribution. You can also call 1.855.312.HEAL (4325). Gifts can be mailed to Episcopal Relief & Development, PO Box 7058, Merrifield, VA 22116-7058.