[Vatican Radio] Pope Francis today sent a message to the new Archbishop of Canterbury on the occasion of Dr. Justin Welby’s enthronement at Canterbury Cathedral.
Below, please find the full text of Pope Francis’ greetings to Archbishop Justin Welby of Canterbury:
To the Most Reverend and Right Honourable
Archbishop of Canterbury
“May grace and peace be multiplied to you” (1 Pet 1:2b)
I thank you for the kind words contained in your message to me at my election, and I wish in turn to offer my greetings and best wishes on the occasion of your Enthronement at Canterbury Cathedral.
The pastoral ministry is a call to walk in fidelity to the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ. Please be assured of my prayers as you take up your new responsibilities, and I ask you to pray for me as I respond to the new call that the Lord has addressed to me.
I look forward to meeting you in the near future, and to continuing the warm fraternal relations that our predecessors enjoyed.
From the Vatican, 18 March 2013
Before his resignation, Pope Benedict XVI sent greetings to the new Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr. Justin Welby. Below, please find the complete text of Pope Benedict’s greeting to the new Archbishop:
To the Most Reverend and Right Honourable
Archbishop of Canterbury
In our prayers for you we always thank God, the Father of our Lord Jesus
Christ, for we have heard of your faith in Christ Jesus and of the love that
you have for all the saints, because of the hope laid up for you in heaven
With these words of Saint Paul, I greet you joyfully in the name of the Lord Jesus, “whom God made our wisdom, our righteousness and sanctification and redemption” (1 Cor 1:30), and I offer you my prayerful good wishes on the occasion of your installation as Archbishop of Canterbury.
You take up your office at a time when the Christian faith is being called into question in many parts of the Western world by those who claim that religion is a private matter, with no contribution to offer to public debate. Ministers of the Gospel today have to respond to a widespread deafness to the music of faith, and a general weariness that shuns the demands of discipleship. Yet the hunger for God, even if unrecognized, is ever-present in our society, and the preacher’s task, as a messenger of hope, is to speak the truth with love, shedding the light of Christ into the darkness of people’s lives. May your apostolate yield a rich harvest and may it open the eyes and ears of many to the life-giving message of the Gospel.
Let us give thanks to God that the bonds of affection between Catholics and Anglicans have become firmly established in recent decades, through dialogue and collaboration, as well as personal meetings between our respective predecessors. It is greatly to be hoped that we will continue to build upon that important legacy. The disappointments that have been encountered and the challenges that remain on our journey towards full communion are well known, but there have also been signs of hope. Recognizing that our unity will arise only as a gift from the Lord, let us entrust ourselves to his Holy Spirit, as we renew our determination to seek genuine unity in faith and to engage more profoundly in common witness and mission.
With sentiments of fraternal regard, I assure you of my prayers as you take up your new responsibilities. Whatever challenges you encounter, may the Lord grant you strength and wisdom, and may the Holy Spirit guide you in all that you undertake in his name.
From the Vatican, 4 February 2013
BENEDICTUS PP XVI
[Episcopal Church Office of Public Affairs] On Monday, March 25 at 10:30 am Eastern, more than 20 Episcopal bishops from throughout the church will lead hundreds of clergy and lay people in praying the Stations of the Cross in Washington, DC, as they process along Pennsylvania Avenue from the White House to the U. S. Capitol to challenge violence, especially the epidemic of gun violence that claims so many thousands of American lives each year.
The service will begin outside St. John’s Episcopal Church, Lafayette Square,at the corner of 16th and H Streets, Northwest, across from the White House, and conclude on the west lawn of the U. S. Capitol some two and a half hours later.
The specially written Stations of the Cross, focusing on the tragedy of gun violence, are available here for personal use, and can be adapted for use in local contexts.
Bishops, priests and deacons in the procession will wear cassocks or other clerical attire, and worshippers will carry a wooden cross, as they make their way along Pennsylvania Avenue, stopping in front of memorials, government buildings and works of art to offer prayers for an end to violence, the culture of violence, and the social and economic conditions that spawn violence.
Bishop Ian T. Douglas of Connecticut, along with Suffragan Bishops Laura J. Ahrens and James E. Curry, organized the service immediately after the killing of 28 students, teachers and individuals at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown. They worked in cooperation with Bishop Mariann Edgar Budde of Washington, and a team from her diocese. Clergy and lay involved in the Diocese of Connecticut’s response to the killings in Newtown will participate in the service.
“The death dealing realities of violence are brought home to us as Christians when we recall the crucifixion of Jesus on the Cross this Holy Week,” said Bishop Douglas. “Walking the Way of the Cross invites us, compels us, to challenge violence of every kind and to pursue peace and reconciliation.”
Episcopal bishops Nedi Rivera of Eastern Oregon, Bud Shand of Easton, Mary Glasspool of Los Angeles, Larry Provenzano of Long Island, Eugene Sutton, Bob Ihloff and Joe Burnett of Maryland, Gayle Harris of Massachusetts, Steven Miller of Milwaukee, Mark Beckwith of Newark, Dave Bailey of Navajoland, Rob Hirschfeld of New Hampshire, W. Nicholas Knisely of Rhode Island, Leo Frade of Southeast Florida, Dorsey Henderson of Upper South Carolina, Shannon Johnson of Virginia, Douglas Fisher of Western Massachusetts and Porter Taylor of Western North Carolina will participate. The Rt. Rev. Dinis S. Sengulane, bishop of Lebombo, Mozambique in The Anglican Church of Southern Africa, who helped to end the civil war in his country and inspired the collection and conversion of weapons from that war for peaceful purposes, will be a participant.
“The church is called to comfort those who mourn, but if we do not also urge our lawmakers to take steps to reduce the number of people who are shot to death each year, our words of comfort ring hollow,” Budde said.
Stations of the Cross
The Stations of the Cross commemorates the ordeal of Jesus from his condemnation by Pontius Pilate through his crucifixion and burial. Worshippers metaphorically walk with Jesus, stopping to offer prayers inspired by events, some legendary, that occurred as Jesus carried his cross. The liturgy being used in Washington DC is available on the Diocese of Connecticut’s website.
Episcopalians in other communities are also holding events on March 25 to challenge gun violence. The Episcopal Diocese of Iowa will hold a march and interfaith prayer service on Monday from 2-3 pm Central at the Cathedral Church of St. Paul in Des Moines (Diocese of Iowa). St. Barnabas Episcopal Church in McMinnville, Oregon (Diocese of Oregon) will use the Stations of the Cross liturgy developed for the event in Washington DC for its own outdoor service from 3:30 to 6:30 pm Pacific, as will Trinity Episcopal Church on the Green in New Haven, Connecticut, where the Stations will begin at noon, Eastern. Other communities holding Holy Week services to stand against gun violence are invited to post their event information on the Episcopalians Against Gun Violence Facebook page.
Many of the bishops who will participate in the event are part of Episcopalians Against Gun Violence, an ad hoc group of bishops, clergy and lay people of Episcopalians who are working, collectively and individually, to curb gun violence. Learn more on Facebook at facebook.com/EpiscopaliansAgainstGunViolence and on Twitter at @TheCrossLobby.
For more information contact Jim Naughton, firstname.lastname@example.org.
[Lambeth Palace] Jesus Christ calls us to step outside the comfort of our traditions and places “and go into the waves,” the Archbishop of Canterbury said March 21 in his inauguration ceremony at Canterbury Cathedral.
Preaching to 2,000 people inside the cathedral and millions more watching and listening around the world, Archbishop Justin Welby said that fear imprisons us and stops us from being fully human.
Drawing on the story of Christ beckoning the disciples to leave the boat and walk across the waters, the archbishop recalled Jesus’ words: “Take heart, it is I, do not be afraid.”
On the day of his inauguration – which he acknowledged helped him sympathize with Peter’s “fear and trembling” – Welby said that “our response to these words sets the patters of our lives, for the church, for the whole of society.”
The complete text of the archbishop’s sermon follows.
Sermon at the Inauguration of the Ministry of the 105th Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Portal Welby
Canterbury Cathedral, 21st March 2013
(Commemoration of Thomas Cranmer, Feast of St Benedict)
Ruth 2:10-16; 2 Corinthians 5:16-21; Matthew 14:22-23; “Take heart, it is I, do not be afraid”, Matthew 14:27
To each one of us, whoever and wherever we are, joining us from far away by television of radio, or here in the Cathedral, Jesus calls through the storms and darkness of life and says “Take heart, it is I, do not be afraid.”
Our response to those words sets the pattern for our lives, for the church, for the whole of society. Fear imprisons us and stops us being fully human. Uniquely in all of human history Jesus Christ, the Son of God, is the one who as living love liberates holy courage.
“If it is you tell me to come to you on the water” Peter says, and Jesus replies “come.” History does not relate what the disciples thought about getting out of a perfectly serviceable boat, but Peter was right, and they were wrong. The utterly absurd is completely reasonable when Jesus is the one who is calling. Courage is liberated, and he gets out of the boat, walks a bit, and then fails. Love catches him, gently sets him right, and in a moment they are both in the boat and there is peace. Courage failed, but Jesus is stronger than failure.
The fear of the disciples was reasonable. People do not walk on water, but this person did. For us to trust and follow Christ is reasonable if He is what the disciples end up saying He is; “truly you are the Son of God.” Each of us now needs to heed His voice calling to us, and to get out of the boat and go to Him. Because even when we fail, we find peace and hope and become more fully human than we can imagine: failure forgiven, courage liberated, hope persevering, love abounding.
For more than a thousand years this country has to one degree or another sought to recognize that Jesus is the Son of God; by the ordering of its society, by its laws, by its sense of community. Sometimes we have done better, sometimes worse. When we do better we make space for our own courage to be liberated, for God to act among us and for human beings to flourish. Slaves were freed, Factory Acts passed, and the NHS and social care established through Christ-liberated courage. The present challenges of environment and economy, of human development and global poverty, can only be faced with extraordinary courage.
In humility and simplicity Pope Francis called us on Tuesday to be protectors of each other: of the natural world, of the poor and vulnerable. Courage is released in a society that is under the authority of God, so that we may become the fully human community of which we all dream. Let us hear Christ who calls to us and says “Take heart, it is I, do not be afraid.”
The first reading we heard dates from the time of Israel before the Kings. It is the account of a Moabite refugee – utterly stigmatized, inescapably despised – taking the huge risk of choosing a God she does not know in a place she has not been, and finding security when she does so. The society Ruth went to was healthy because it was based on obedience to God, both in public care and private love.
Today we may properly differ on the degrees of state and private responsibility in a healthy society. But if we sever our roots in Christ we abandon the stability which enables good decision making. There can be no final justice, or security, or love, or hope in our society if it is not finally based on rootedness in Christ. Jesus calls to us over the wind and storms, heed his words and we will have the courage to build society in stability.
For nearly two thousand years the Church has sought, often failing, to recognize in its way of being that Jesus is the Son of God. The wind and waves divided Jesus from the disciples. Peter ventures out in fear and trembling (as you may imagine I relate to him at this point). Jesus reconciles Peter to Himself and makes the possibility for all the disciples to find peace. All the life of our diverse churches finds renewal and unity when we are reconciled afresh to God and so are able to reconcile others. A Christ-heeding life changes the church and a Christ-heeding church changes the world: St Benedict set out to create a school for prayer, and incidentally created a monastic order that saved European civilization.
The more the Church is authentically heeding Jesus’ call, leaving its securities, speaking and acting clearly and taking risks, the more the Church suffers. Thomas Cranmer faced death with Christ-given courage, leaving a legacy of worship, of holding to the truth of the gospel, on which we still draw. I look at the Anglican leaders here and remember that in many cases round the world their people are scattered to the four winds or driven underground: by persecution, by storms of all sorts, even by cultural change. Many Christians are martyred now as in the past.
Yet at the same time the 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. In England alone the churches together run innumerable food banks, shelter the homeless, educate a million children, offer debt counseling, comfort the bereaved, and far, far more. All this comes from heeding the call of Jesus Christ. Internationally, churches run refugee camps, mediate civil wars, organize elections, set up hospitals. All of it happens because of heeding the call to go to Jesus through the storms and across the waves.
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.
[Episcopal News Service] When Episcopal clergy and laity gather March 25 for a Holy Week Way of the Cross procession in Washington, D.C., it will be the latest in a host of church activities aimed at highlighting and combating gun violence. Across the nation, Episcopalians have lobbied legislators to support gun-control laws, visited gun venders, hosted gun buybacks, created artwork memorializing gun-violence victims, preached about gun violence and observed a Gun Violence Prevention Sabbath.
The current emphasis on reducing gun violence stems from the Dec. 14 fatal shooting of 20 pupils and six educators at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut.
The Diocese of Connecticut’s bishops partnered with Bishop Mariann Edgar Budde and other members of the Diocese of Washington in planning the March 25 procession, which more than 20 bishops and other Episcopalians from around the country are expected to join.
“We are taking our witness to our nation’s capital to say to our political leaders and to our country that we will no longer be silent while violence permeates our world, our society, our church, our homes and ourselves,” Connecticut Bishops Ian Douglas, James Curry and Laura Ahrens wrote to their diocese. “The walk, and particularly the reflections at each station, will reflect our commitment to transformational change and the proclamation of God’s hope to the world.”
In Chicago, where gun violence long has been a concern, Episcopalians from across northern Illinois and their partners in more than 65 faith-based and civic organizations will participate March 22 in the second annual CROSSwalk, a four-mile procession to remember Chicago’s murdered youth.
“We simply cannot continue to ignore the heart-wrenching loss of young life that occurs with such horrifying frequency in Chicago and other cities in northern Illinois,” Chicago Bishop Jeff Lee said in a press release. “CROSSwalk calls us to pray, to build relationships and to act as though lives depend on us. And they do.”
In Washington, D.C., Washington National Cathedral partnered with Faiths United to Prevent Gun Violence to present a series of events March 14-17 to mark a Gun Violence Prevention Sabbath Weekend. Religious leaders, Congress members, gun-control advocates, law-enforcement officials and medical and mental-health professionals gathered for prayers and discussions about gun violence and ways to combat it. March 16 featured a national conversation on faith-inspired public policy on gun violence and an interfaith discussion featuring Christian, Islamic and Sikh leaders. The weekend concluded with Sunday worship, where cathedral Dean Gary Hall preached: “[W]e at Washington National Cathedral are in this gun-violence work for the long haul. We won’t give up until our streets and our schools and our children are safe. We owe at least that much to our children, our neighbors, ourselves.”
About 100 people attended the March 16 programs at the cathedral, while others around the country watched a live webcast, said cathedral Communications Director Richard Weinberg. “We know that close to 400 houses of worship across the country had signed up to participate in some way.” This included at least 14 Episcopal congregations, he said.
Plans are underway to continue the anti-violence work.
“We really thought the conversations were rich and meaningful, and we think there’s a way to package excerpts of the day’s events and worship for congregations across the country to continue in dialogue on the issue of gun violence,” Weinberg said, adding, “We are already in dialogue on staff and with our partners about future events.”
While some congregations watched the webcast, others who signed up observed the Sabbath in other ways.
St. Andrew’s by the Lake in Duluth, Minnesota, used the national event “as a goad for our own development locally,” said Vicar Theo Park. “We’ve been trying to pull together a comprehensive campaign.”
Park has preached on gun violence, and a member of the church’s Peace and Justice Committee – which handles outreach – has staffed a table during coffee hours with contact information for lobbying legislators. “So there’s a presence and there’s been a statement, but the [mission] as a whole has taken no official stance,” Park said.
The Rev. Jane Gould, rector of St. Stephen’s Episcopal Church in Lynn, Massachusetts, connected with the Sabbath through People Improving Communities through Organization, or PICO, a national network of faith-based community organizations. Gould preached about gun violence and invited parishioners to create “heavenly hosts” in memory of victims of gun violence as part of an art installation at the church.
St. Stephen’s is hosting an installation of “The Way of Salvation,” Stations of the Cross created by diocesan Deacon Gay Cox. The last element is a sanctuary display of “heavenly hosts.” Congregation members were invited to create them, placing colorful shiny paper on one side of CD-sized Styrofoam circles and attaching photos or writing names of victims of gun or other violence, or others they wished to honor, on the other side.
“We had lots of glitter glue, regular glitter, jewels, ribbons – just whatever they wanted to put on their disc to honor someone,” Gould said. One couple decorated a disc in honor of their son, who died while serving in the military; the day of the activity was the anniversary of his death.
The hanging “hosts” will be veiled during Holy Week. “Then they will emerge in all their radiance for the [Easter] Vigil,” Gould said.
Previously, parishioners have lobbied Congressional and other leaders to support gun-control legislation. Even before the Newtown shootings, the Diocese of Massachusetts was grappling with how to combat gun violence following the shooting death of Jorge Fuentes, a young leader from St. Stephen’s Church in Boston and its B-SAFE summer program. The diocese established an anti-violence task force in his memory at its November convention.
Gun violence is not an abstract concern in Lynn. “We’re in a small city with a significant gang presence,” Gould said. Lynn was among eight communities to receive state funding as part of a Safe and Successful Youth Initiative attempting to “stop the bloodletting in the cities,” she said. “Luckily, we don’t have as many deaths by gun violence.”
But one of her parishioners has a cousin hospitalized after being shot three times, she said. “He’s alive; they didn’t think he’d make it through the night.”
“Most of our kids have a friend who’s died” of gun violence, she said.
Beyond observing the Gun Violence Prevention Sabbath, Episcopal churches have addressed gun violence in other ways in recent weeks.
On March 16, St. Peter’s Episcopal Church in Morristown, New Jersey, partnered with Morris County law-enforcement agencies to host an anonymous gun buyback. The event collected 600 guns – including 15 assault weapons illegal in the state, 91 semi-automatic weapons, 192 revolvers and 251 rifles and shotguns – at St. Peter’s and on March 15 at the Roman Catholic St. Paul Inside the Walls in Madison.
When planning the buyback, officials contacted the Morris Area Clergy Council, of which St. Peter’s is a member.
“We thought it was a good idea to partner with the clergy,” said William Schievella, chief of investigations with the Morris County Prosecutor’s Office.
Individuals who have had contact with law enforcement previously may feel more comfortable talking to officers while at a church, he explained. And people might not have felt comfortable coming to a county administration building to turn in weapons, but at a church, “they know it’s a house of worship, and they know it’s an open place for them to come,” he said.
St. Peter’s participated, said Rector Janet Broderick, because “we want to say that life is sacred with our actions – all life. We want to say that every gun which is melted down is one less opportunity for God’s creation to be harmed.”
Guns collected were checked to see if they were loaded (none were) and if they were stolen (three were), officials said during a March 18 press conference. Further checks will identify any weapons used in crimes that must be saved as evidence; the rest will be destroyed. The nearly $50,000 distributed to those surrendering the guns came from donations to the county CrimeStoppers program and from forfeitures from criminal assets.
Morris County is among several New Jersey counties to hold buybacks, with about $900,000 total paid to buy more than 7,000 weapons.
“The primary purpose is to get these things off the street,” Schievella said during the press conference. Acting Prosecutor Fredric Knapp noted that surrendering firearms ensured no one could steal them. “Burglary has traditionally been a problem in suburban communities.”
That was what prompted one man to come to St. Peter’s to surrender two small handguns left among the possessions of his father when he died in 2002. The son tried bringing them to a police department at the time but was told there was no provision for turning them in.
“They were real small. You could actually put them in a pocket,” he said. He placed them in a small safe but worried about them being stolen because his home had been burglarized before. “The safe is small enough, somebody could carry it away.”
Although a legal gun owner, he said he was glad to be rid of the handguns. “I’ve been waiting for this.”
One woman read about the buyback in the newspaper. “There has been this target rifle in my attic for 30 years, and I said to myself, ‘I’m going to turn it in.”
She wrapped the rifle, left behind by an ex-spouse, in newspapers and was pleased that one of the officers removed it from the car for her. “I was really uncomfortable driving here with a gun in my car. I’m not a gun person,” she said. “It’s very unnerving to be near firearms.”
Beyond the buyback, St. Peter’s and other churches in the Episcopal Diocese of Newark are involved in ongoing efforts to raise awareness about and combat gun violence.
In December, a week after the Newtown shootings, Broderick spearheaded an effort to have banners hung at clergy council member churches – including St. Peter’s and the Episcopal Church of the Redeemer in Morristown – and town hall and the high school declaring: They Were All Our Children.
On Valentine’s Day, the two-month anniversary of the shootings, St. Peter’s Assistant Rector Melissa Hall, Redeemer Rector Cynthia Black and church laity participated in a rally on the town green against gun violence.
More recently, Broderick joined a clergy delegation from NJ Together, an interfaith coalition affiliated with the Industrial Areas Foundation, in meeting Rep. Rodney Frelinghuysen (R-11th District), a parishioner, to urge him to back gun-control legislation.
“I think he shared our sense that there are some common-sense measures that should be on the books federally to keep guns out of the hands of criminals, but he didn’t commit to supporting them,” said Joe Morris, NJ Together staff organizer. “I think it was a good first meeting, and we’re going to follow up and find out where he stands on these things.”
NJ Together also met with Rep. Scott Garrett (R-5th Dist.) “I think we asked him for five things, and we were 0 for 5,” Morris said. “He told us that he thought that the clergy should do a better job preaching against violent video games.”
“We’ve been kind of using the mandate in Leviticus – ‘Do not stand idly by while your neighbor’s blood is shed’ – which has been kind of a helpful motivation for us but also as a way of evaluating others,” he said. “We came away feeling like Scott Garrett is just standing idly by.”
Elsewhere in the diocese, the Rev. Joseph Harmon, rector of Christ Episcopal Church in East Orange, has been active with NJ Together
and recently joined other clergy in meeting with East Orange Mayor Robert Bowser to discuss possible strategies for controlling gun violence.
On March 14, a NJ Together group of 14 clergy and laity from four synagogues and three Episcopal churches – Christ Church; All Saints, Hoboken; and Grace Church, Newark – visited three gun venders in Paramus to learn about their policies and urge them to sign on to a Mayors Against Illegal Guns 10-point voluntary code for gun retailers. The code includes actions such as videotaping firearms transactions.
“It was a very positive experience, I think, for all of us,” said Harmon, who participated with some of his parishioners. “We showed up unannounced, and we were very well-received at Dick’s Sporting Goods. The manager spoke very freely and very readily, as did the person behind the gun counter.”
They learned that Dick’s has continued a policy of not selling automatic weapons that it put in place after the Newtown shootings and that “the only guns that they will sell are guns used in hunting,” he said. “They do not sell large-capacity magazines, and they do not sell handguns. That’s their policy, and we applauded them for it. We hope other venders like Walmart and Sports Authority and Ramsey [Outdoor] would come on board with similar kinds of proactive policies.”
“The folks at Ramsey were much more cagey. … They said that the manager was not available,” Harmon said. “It seems like Sports Authority is moving in a similar direction as Dick’s, but we didn’t have information to officially verify that.”
NJ Together is discussing making additional vender visits, he said. “Part of our purpose is not simply to point out the folks whose policies are not very open to ending gun violence … but to recognize those venders that are exercising discretion and sensitivity to the issue, like Dick’s.”
On April 14, NJ Together will hold “a major gathering” at Christ Church for Northern New Jersey congregations involved in the anti-gun violence effort and for newcomers “to come and hear what we’ve been doing, to share their thoughts and hopes and just basically to let each other know that we are here and that our voices in unison and in number can be effective,” Harmon said.
The coalition involves Christians and Jews, Muslims, Sikhs and Baha’i, he said. “It is truly an interfaith effort, and it’s growing.”
The tenets of the various faiths all support taking action, he said. “We have the witness of the Christian faith of Jesus Christ, the witness of Muhammad in the Muslim faith, the witness of the prophets and the law in the Jewish faith, and the peaceful spirit that comes from the other faith communities that compel us to stand up and speak out against gun violence.”
– Sharon Sheridan is an ENS correspondent.
[Episcopal News Service] In a famous tradition, Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby banged on the West Door of Canterbury Cathedral three times with his pastoral staff, and the dean opened the door to welcome him.
[Episcopal News Service] The 38 primates and moderators of the Anglican Communion provinces process into Canterbury Cathedral for the enthronement service of Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby.
[Episcopal Church Office of Public Affairs] As approved by the Episcopal Church Economic Justice Loan Committee (EJLC) of the Executive Council and as part of its economic justice portfolio, The Episcopal Church recently purchased a three-year certificate of deposit for $500,000 in the Bank of Palestine.
This action, approved in late January by EJLC, is in response to several resolutions affirmed by the General Convention, most recently Resolution B019 approved by General Convention in July 2012.
Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori said, “I am delighted that The Episcopal Church has now made a positive investment in the Palestinian economy, an action which we have encouraged for some time. This is tangible evidence of our commitment to a healthy economy in the Palestinian territories as a necessary instrument to building a lasting peace.”
The investment is part of the assets which were set aside by Executive Council in November 1989 for socially-responsible fixed-income investments. At year-end 2012, the investments consisted of $3.6 million in deposits at credit unions and similar intermediaries; and $2.1 million in loans to community development intermediaries made through the Economic Justice Community Development Loan Fund.
“Interest earned from these investments is typically below market rates, though an effort is made to achieve rates above the inflation rate in order to safeguard the principal available for future loans,” explained N. Kurt Barnes, Episcopal Church treasurer. “The interest earned in this program flows to the DFMS operating budget.”
In preparation for the purchase, the Episcopal Church Finance Office worked with several organizations, including the Holy Land Christian Ecumenical Foundation, to identify business opportunities in Palestine. The EJLC concluded that an investment in the Bank of Palestine made the most sense. Barnes continued, “The primary mid-size to large businesses in Palestine are banking services, IT and Call Centers, hospitality and tourism. The banking sector offers liquidity; and as the leading bank in Palestine, the Bank of Palestine is a logical candidate, which in turn will get the money out to community development activities within Palestine.”
Barnes, who met with senior management of the Bank of Palestine, noted that the bank:
• Has well-developed corporate-governance and risk-management structures based on best practices generally seen in North America;
• Makes nearly 20% of its $720 million loan portfolio available to micro and small businesses (SMEs) employing over 10,000 Palestinians;
• Has a green loans program, which encourages water wells, wastewater management and alternative energy sources in order to reduce reliance on often unstable Israeli-sourced energy; and
• Contributes 5% of its net profit each year to Corporate Social Responsibility initiatives.
Bishop Stacy Sauls, Episcopal Church Chief Operating Officer, commented, “One of the ways we seek to serve at the churchwide level is to make it easy for the Church at the local level, dioceses and congregations, to act on our common convictions. Several dioceses have already approached us about helping them take similar action. Co-investing with us pools resources for good and allows smaller units of the Church to take advantage of the work done on their behalf and access services and opportunities that might not otherwise be available to them. That’s what the churchwide level exists to do.”
Lindsey Parker, of the Diocese of Massachusetts and chair of the EJLC, noted, “We are pleased to receive the Bank’s assurance that the deposit will be directed to SMEs; the Bank’s Green Loans Program; or the soon-to-be introduced SME loans for women.”
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[Episcopal News Service] The vestments worn by Archbishop of Canterbury Welby during the enthronement 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.
The service, during which Welby will be formally enthroned as the 105th archbishop of Canterbury, begins at 3 p.m. local time (11 a.m. EST).
The British Broadcasting Corp. plans to stream the service live here between 2:30 p.m. – 4:30 p.m. local time, with highlights of the service featured on BBC World News 24 between 2:55 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.
Lambeth Palace, the Church of England and ACNS will be tweeting throughout the day using #ABC105, and there will be news articles, photos and updates on www.anglicancommunion.org/acns, www.churchofengland.org and www.archbishopofcanterbury.org as well as their Facebook pages.
Episcopal News Service will post written and video coverage of the service.
[Anglican Communion News Service] As Archbishop Justin Welby prepares for his inauguration in Canterbury today, the 85 million members of the Anglican Communion are being invited to pray for him and his ministry.
The Anglican Communion Office has today issued a prayer that Anglicans and Episcopalians can say before Welby becomes the 105th occupant of the Chair of St. Augustine.
Welby’s Confirmation of Election took place in St. Paul’s Cathedral in London on Feb. 4 That was a relatively low-key legal ceremony, whereas today’s service will include African dancers, Punjabi music, a Burundian blessing, and strong representation from the other main Christian Churches around the world. This makes plain the importance of the global Anglican Communion to the archbishop of Canterbury, and the drive towards the deeper unity of all Christians.
A prayer for the Most Rev. & Rt. Hon. Justin Welby as he is enthroned as the 105th archbishop of Canterbury
Lord Jesus Christ, Son of the living God,
through whom all things live and move and have their being;
pour out your Holy Spirit and the boundless gifts of grace
upon your servant Justin,
that being daily renewed,
he may faithfully serve you
in the ministries which you have entrusted to him;
giving glory to you,
who with the Father and the Spirit,
are One God, now and for ever, to the ages of ages. Amen.
[Diocese of Western Michigan -- Press Release] The Search Team has nominated three priests to stand for election as the 9th Bishop of Western Michigan. The nominees for bishop are:
- The Rev. Jennifer Adams, Rector, Grace Episcopal Church, Holland, Michigan (Diocese of Western Michigan)
- The Rev. Whayne Hougland, Jr., Rector, St. Luke’s Episcopal Church, Salisbury, North Carolina (Diocese of North Carolina)
- The Rev. Canon Angela Shepherd, Canon for Mission, Diocese of Maryland
A letter from each nominee, as well as a summary of education and experience, is included in the slate announcement booklet. The booklet also includes a report of the Search Team describing the search process.
To download the booklet as a PDF file, please click here: Nominee Profiles & Petition Process.
The booklet is also available for viewing in magazine format here.
Further information will be provided about all nominees, including any nominees by petition, in a ballot announcement scheduled for publication on April 22, 2013.
The Transition Team will host a series of informational events with nominees from May 3rd-5th at three locations in the diocese; these events will include nominees by petition.
The electing convention will be held on May 18, 2013, at Grace Episcopal Church, Grand Rapids.
Following the election of the Ninth Bishop, the required consents will be sought from other dioceses of the Episcopal Church.Petition Process
Petition Process information is included in the slate announcement booklet on pp. 14-17.
The Rev. Canon Robert Schiesler, President of the Standing Committee, announces that the Committee is accepting Nominations by Petition from March 20 through April 15, 2013.
Due to the time required to complete the required background checks, the Standing Committee asks that any petition candidates indicate their intention by immediately emailing the Committee President, The Rev. Canon Robert Schiesler, with name, address & contact phone. [Canon Schiesler's email address is published on p. 14 of the slate announcement booklet.]
The form for nominations by petition can be downloaded separately here: Petition Form.
[Anglican Communion News Service] Members of the worldwide Anglican Communion are gearing up for the March 21 inauguration of Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby at Canterbury Cathedral.
As staff at the cathedral get ready for this key moment in Anglican history, lay and ordained people from right around the world are also preparing for the big day.
Over the past week the communion’s primates — the most senior bishops from across the Anglican Communion — have travelled to England for the inauguration. Many have made the most of their visit by attending meetings while in the U.K. Primate of West Africa, the Most Rev. Tilewa S. Johnson, visited the mission agency Us (formerly USPG). He also recorded a piece on the Church of England’s new primate for BBC’s Radio 4 Sunday programme. Among other visits the Primate of the Episcopal Church in Jerusalem and the Middle East headed to a housing project in Lancashire.
All the Anglican Communion Standing Committee members will attend the inauguration. Chairman of the Standing Committee and the Anglican Consultative Council, and Bishop of Southern Malawi, the Rt. Rev. James Tengatenga told ACNS, that the inauguration “is an important moment for our Anglican Communion because it marks the beginning of Archbishop Welby’s leadership of our global family.
The Igreja Episcopal Anglicana do Brasil (The Episcopal Anglican Church in Brazil) has said that its members, along with ecumenical partners, are praying for the Archbishop of Canterbury’s big day. A statement issued by the National Council of Christian Churches of Brazil said: “We are praying for [his] ministry to be fruitful and to continue the traditional commitment of the Anglican Church in deepening the dialogue and unity amongst Christians and for the common service in favour of justice, peace, and the integrity of creation.”
Representatives of the Anglican Communion at the Pope’s inaugural mass on March were travelling back from Rome to Canterbury March 20. These include the bishops of the Church of England’s Diocese in Europe, the Rt. Rev. Dr. Geoffrey Rowell and the Rt. Rev. David Hamid; and Secretary General of the Anglican Communion, the Rev. Canon Kenneth Kearon.
The Anglican Communion’s communicators are also preparing to share the good news of the enthronement with members of their provinces. Aldrin Peloko of the Anglican Church of Melanesia said he is reporting on the enthronement for his provincial magazine and website. The Episcopal Church’s news service ENS will have staff at the cathedral to cover the event. The Province of the Anglican Church of Burundi, whose primate is blessing Archbishop Welby during Thursday’s service, is keeping its Facebook followers up to date on the latest news about the enthronement.
Jan Butter, director for Communications at the Anglican Communion Office and editor of the Anglican Communion News Service, said, “Anglicans the world over are looking forward to this special day, and thanks to digital technology more people than ever before will be able to enjoy it.”
The British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) has announced that it is airing the inauguration on BBC Two television between 2:30 p.m. – 4:30 p.m. local time and BBC Radio 4 (LW) between 2:55 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.
Lambeth Palace, the Church of England and ACNS will be tweeting throughout the day using #ABC105, and there will be news articles, photos and updates on www.anglicancommunion.org/acns, www.churchofengland.org and www.archbishopofcanterbury.org as well as their Facebook pages.
For anyone who misses the enthronement, there will also be a feature article in Anglican World magazine.
[Editors' note: The U.S.-based Episcopal Church will be represented by Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori, as one of the Anglican Communion’s 38 primates, and her canon to the ordinary, the Rev. Canon Chuck Robertson. Bishops Shannon Johnston of Virginia, Ian Douglas of Connecticut and Andy Doyle of Texas will also participate.]
[Anglican Journal] At their joint assembly this July, Anglican and Lutheran delegates will be asked to consider a joint declaration addressing the issues of homelessness in Canada and “responsible resource extraction” involving Canadian companies here and abroad.
The Council of General Synod (CoGS), the Anglican church’s governing body between General Synods, agreed to forward the resolution for consideration at the Joint Assembly this July 3 to 7, in Ottawa.
On the issue of “responsible resource extraction,” the declaration calls on the two churches to support indigenous communities in Canada and overseas “in exercising their right to Free, Prior and Informed Consent” with regard to development projects that affect their traditional territories.
It also asks them to “advocate for responsible and ethical investment both in Canada and around the world.”
The declaration notes that Canadian companies are “major players” in mining, energy production and resource extraction across the country and abroad. “They generate wealth for our societies, but they also give rise to serious and complex environmental, socio-economic, and human rights issues,” the declaration states.
“We bear a moral responsibility to address these issues and concerns in partnership with others,” it stresses.
The declaration expresses concern that two recent legislations—Bill C-38 also known as the Omnibus Bill and C-45—have made changes to environmental legislation and assessment processes that “potentially threaten the ecological integrity of areas under proposed development.”
It notes that resource extraction and other projects, whether here or abroad, often affect traditional territories of indigenous peoples and are undertaken without their Free, Prior and Informed Consent, “a right enshrined in the U.N. Declaration of the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, to which Canada is a signatory nation.”
Prepared by the partners in mission and eco-justice committee, the declaration commits the two churches to “advocate for renewed federal funding” and for an “integrated national collaborative strategy and greater accountability on the part of provinces and municipalities” in addressing homelessness and substandard housing.
“As we look across Canada, we are disturbed by the reality that around 400,000 people are without a healthy place to live and that homelessness has continued to increase despite years of unprecedented economic growth and prosperity in our country,” the declaration states.
It notes that many, particularly the working poor, are unable to find affordable housing. “The costs in terms of human suffering are staggering, as are the additional burdens for health care and social services,” it says.
Local churches help by providing a broad range of services and support for the homeless but these are not enough, it adds.
The declaration carries a promise to act by “nurturing and supporting” their own agencies and programs that work with and for the homeless, the under-housed and refugees. It also pledges both churches to learn more about the issues around poverty and homelessness and to raise awareness within their communities.
[20 de marzo de 2013] La Cámara de los Obispos de la Iglesia Episcopal, reunidos en retiro en el Centro de Conferencia de Kanuga, Hendersonville, Carolina del Norte, ofrece a la Iglesia la palabra siguiente.
Una palabra a la Iglesia:
Liderazgo divino ante la violencia
Oh Dios, que por la pasión de tu bendito Hijo convertiste a un instrumento de muerte vergonzosa en un medio de vida para nosotros: concede que de tal modo nos gloriemos en la cruz de Cristo que suframos con alegría la vergüenza y privación por causa de tu Hijo nuestro Salvador Jesucristo; que vive y reina contigo y el Espíritu Santo, un solo Dios, por los siglos de los siglos. Amén (Colecta del martes de la Semana Santa. Libro de Oración Común. (LOC) p. 135).
Queridos hermanos y hermanas en Cristo:
La Cámara de los Obispos de la Iglesia se reunió en un retiro del 8 al 12 marzo en el centro de conferencias de Kanuga en Hendersonville, Carolina del Norte. Durante el tiempo pasado juntos el tema tratado ha sido el “liderazgo divino en medio de la pérdida”. Hemos oído conmovedoras reflexiones sobre la pérdida a consecuencia de: los tiroteos en Newtown, en Hurricane Sandy, las luchas en curso en Haití, el trauma histórico experimentado por los nativos americanos en Dakota del Sur, y la enfermedad física. Al estar juntos en conversación, oración y adoración común, hemos compartido la realidad de una nueva vida en Jesús resucitado que ha vencido la muerte y redime nuestras pérdidas.
El tiempo que estuvimos juntos nos condujo a un nuevo momento de reconocimiento con respecto a cómo la violencia infecta y afecta nuestras vidas. Hemos considerado cómo la realidad de la violencia en nuestro mundo, nuestra sociedad, nuestras iglesias, nuestros hogares, y en nosotros mismos, nos aleja de Dios y mutuamente. Y nos arrepentimos de que muy a menudo hemos descuidado desafiar la violencia de cualquier tipo y buscar la paz y la reconciliación. En este tiempo de cuaresma rezamos: “Acepta nuestro arrepentimiento, Señor, por el mal que hemos obrado: por nuestra ceguera ante las necesidades humanas y el sufrimiento, y nuestra indiferencia ante la injusticia y la crueldad” (De la Letanía de penitencia del Miércoles de Ceniza, (LOC) p. 186)
En particular, nos afligimos por los muertos a causa de la violencia armada sin sentido en los diversos contextos de donde provenimos. Lamentamos y hemos llorado por los tiroteos masivos ampliamente reportados en este país, recordando tragedias como Aurora, Oak Creek y Newtown. Estamos indignados por la masacre diaria, a menudo invisible y no reconocida, de nuestros jóvenes en ciudades como Chicago, Newark, Baltimore, Port-au-Prince, y Tegucigalpa. Esta matanza debe terminar.
Como obispos de la Iglesia Episcopal incorporamos una amplia variedad de experiencias y puntos de vista con respecto a las armas de fuego. Muchos de nosotros somos cazadores y tiradores deportivos, anteriores miembros militares y oficiales de la policía. Respetamos y honramos que no somos de la misma opinión con respecto a las cuestiones relacionadas con la legislación de armas. Sin embargo, estamos convencidos de que es necesario que haya una nueva conversación en Estados Unidos, que desafíe la violencia armada. Debido a la amplia variedad de contextos en los que vivimos y a nuestro compromiso con un discurso razonado y respetuoso que mantiene unidos a diferencias significativas en una tensión creativa, creemos que la Iglesia Episcopal puede y debe liderar este esfuerzo. De hecho, muchos en esta Iglesia ya lo están haciendo, por lo que damos gracias a Dios.
En nuestras ordenaciones como obispos nos comprometemos a “proclamar con valentía e interpretar el evangelio de Cristo, iluminando las mentes y despertando las conciencias” de los que estamos llamados a servir (LOC p. 420). Hacemos un llamamiento a todos los episcopales a que oren y trabajen para lograr el fin de la violencia armada. Nos comprometemos a liderar una nueva conversación en nuestras naciones en cuanto al uso apropiado y la legislación de las armas de fuego. Y además nos comprometemos a realizar obras concretas en este sentido.
Orando y trabajando juntos podemos ser instrumentos del amor de Dios restaurador y reconciliador del mundo entero. Gloria a Dios, cuyo poder que obra en nosotros puede lograr infinitamente más de lo que podemos pedir o imaginar (Efesios 3:20).
[Episcopal News Service] The Rev. Robert Wyatt has “never met a labyrinth he hasn’t walked,” and each “metaphorical journey” brings deeper, sometimes surprising, revelations.
“When I first walked it, it occurred to me that it never helped to look more than one step [ahead],” recalled Wyatt, rector of St. Helena’s Episcopal Church in Burr Ridge, Illinois, which boasts a 30- by 30-foot square labyrinth.
He had another realization: Two people on the path at the same time can offer an important point of reference. And a third: “If you just stay on the path you’ll always get to the center. It’s not a maze, it’s a path to the center and back out to the world.”
Labyrinths may be located indoors or outside and vary in size and shape; besides the prayer paths that people walk, virtual and hand-held versions are available for mini spiritual rejuvenations. The ancient tradition of labyrinths predates Christianity but is enjoying a revived popularity within the Episcopal Church. They mean various things to different people, and each encounter almost always is an intensely personal experience, Wyatt said.
“One way to understand the labyrinth is as a metaphorical journey to the Holy Land,” said Wyatt, who aims to walk one in Wales and another at Our Lady of Reims Cathedral in Reims, France.
“Their origins are lost in the mist of the human past, but it can be seen as a pilgrimage, as a spiritual journey,” he said. “You can walk it to unburden yourself, for purgation, to get to the middle, pause, stand, meditate, so at that point you can unburden yourself and pray for illumination. And, as you walk out, you might pray for unification with God and God’s purpose for you.”
Or, you can do it for fun.
Like Lauren Watson, 8, of St. Peter’s Episcopal Church in Morristown, New Jersey, in the Diocese of Newark, where on March 10 families decorated two labyrinths on 11- by 14-foot canvases. Church members and visitors will be invited to walk the prayer paths on Maundy Thursday as part of their Holy Week journey.
“I think it’s really good, so fun with all the stars and the crazy stuff like the cactus,” said Watson, who helped decorate the labyrinth pathways using acrylic paints and foam stamps in shapes ranging from angels and stars to lions, fish, ladybugs and coyotes. A large A was painted in the center of one, an O in the middle of the other, symbolizing God the Alpha and Omega, the beginning and end.
Gabrielle Seib-Napolitan, 8, said she thought walking the labyrinth would “feel like a rainbow” in her heart.
The Rev. Melissa Hall, St. Peter’s assistant rector and director of youth education, said teaching children about labyrinths gives them a new way to experience and think about prayer. “We are very hierarchical in our prayer and how we teach children to pray. We always pray up … It’s very reserved. It’s a transcendent God.”
But walking the labyrinth “is very present, internal, personal between you and God,” she said. “You’re looking down as your pray … The words don’t matter. You’re praying with your body.”
It helps adults, too.
When adults first approach a labyrinth and ask what to do, Hall tells them to say the familiar Lord’s Prayer while they’re walking. Invariably, as they move along the path, “they get lost in it,” she said. “They all of a sudden realize they’re not saying anything at all.”
Finding inner peace
Sandy DeGraff had never seen, much less walked, a labyrinth until she left a church office in Johnstown, Pennsylvania, years ago after making burial arrangements for her mother, who had died after a long illness.
DeGraff was grief-stricken and paperwork-weary when she saw the labyrinth. She did what just seemed natural: She stepped out onto its path.
“Ever since, I’ve been a strong labyrinth advocate,” said DeGraff, 67, chair of a committee to build a labyrinth in front of Holy Family Episcopal Church in Fresno, California, in the Diocese of San Joaquin.
“As I started around the labyrinth, I thought about my mother and what we’d just gone through and how important she was to my little family … and about the funeral and everything leading up to this moment,” she said, breaking into tears. “She was a wonderful mother, a wonderful grandmother to my two sons.”
She discovered she was at the labyrinth’s center. “I said a prayer for my mother and a sense of peace washed over me,” she recalled. “It started at the top of my head and came down on me like a shower. I felt it from head to toe, and I knew that it was going to be OK. I said another prayer to God, thanking him for giving her to us.”
On her way out, an idea occurred to her to preserve her mother’s memory by writing a book for subsequent generations. “By the time I finished the labyrinth, I was totally at peace, totally fine,” she said. “It had been difficult, but we made it through. I knew we’d go on, that Mother was still a part of us, and I’ve never stopped having that sense of peace.”
Now she hopes to offer to others similar “pleasant walks with God.” DeGraff regards creating the labyrinth at her church “more for people outside Holy Family than people who are in Holy Family.”
A January fundraiser jump-started the process of raising the $45,000 needed. When completed, the labyrinth will resemble the 11-circuit rosette design of the Chartres Cathedral in France “because it’s so well-known,” said the Rev. Michele Racusin, rector.
“It will be grey and a reddish color. We see it as a tool for evangelism and welcome and prayer,” she said, adding that she hopes to break ground within a few months.
Both Racusin and DeGraff said they believed the labyrinth’s presence would telegraph an invitation to community members to take their own metaphorical journeys. They hope to convey that, while “the church is a sacred space, [it also is] a place of prayer open to the entire community, to anyone who needs it,” DeGraff said.
They added a personal touch to the construction. “We invited everyone in the diocese to bring rocks for it, so we have a good representation from across the diocese with the stones,” said Jay Moody, 62, resident manager of the 300-acre year-round retreat center.
The result was more than 1,800 stones – each roughly 10 inches wide, a foot high and three inches thick – arranged vertically to form the six-petal rose center design and surrounding circular paths. Gravel fills the areas between the lines.
“We wanted to be able to place the stones deeply enough so they wouldn’t fall over,” Moody said.
“We have a great mix here – sandstones in various colors and also volcanic rock,” said Moody, who walks the labyrinth regularly, weather permitting.
Building the labyrinth was meaningful, he said. “When you’re doing a project like this, it’s a silent time. It gave me an opportunity to connect with this place in a more spiritual way.”
After a contractor leveled the area, approximately 70 feet in diameter, the couple laid the stones.
“We felt the labyrinth would add to the depth of the experience of having a retreat here,” Moody said, “because it really represents what we try to do at the center,” located a short distance from Yellowstone National Park.
“It is really our goal when folks come here that they can leave the busy-ness of their everyday lives behind and are able to quiet their minds and to leave here with more open hearts and a bit more insightful about their own spirituality and a little bit more at peace with their relationship with the world,” he said. “We really feel the labyrinth embodies that.”
It also became an intensely personal experience for him.
“As I laid the stones, I thought about what the pathways really meant as I was building them,” he recalled. “Essentially, you walk the path and are trying to move away, to free yourself from the trials and tribulations and influences of daily life. Many times, I was literally on my hands and knees, praying and placing the rocks.”
– The Rev. Pat McCaughan and Sharon Sheridan are Episcopal News Service correspondents.
[Episcopal Church Office of Public Affairs] The Episcopal Church Asiamerica Ministry will celebrate its 40th anniversary June 20-24 in San Francisco CA. Focusing on the theme “EAM@40: Remember, Celebrate and Re-Envision Our Mission,” the conference will celebrate the 40 years of Asiamerica Ministry, from its beginnings when a handful of Chinese and Japanese clergy gathered in San Francisco on March 1973.
“What began as modest vision has grown into a conglomeration of diverse ethnic convocations of over a hundred self-identified churches—Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Filipino, South Asian and Southeast Asian,” explained Rev. Dr. Winfred B. Vergara, Episcopal Church Missioner for Asiamerica Ministries. “’Asiamerica’ as a word was coined by the pioneers and has evolved into three areas of ministries: ministries to Asian immigrants in America; ministries to American born Asian-Americans; and ministries of bridge-building to churches in Asia and the world.”
At the opening Eucharist two historical Asian American figures, the Rev. Hiram Hisanori Kano and the Rev. Dr. Winston Ching, will be honored along with the living pioneers. Kano, whose name is being considered for “Holy Women and Holy Men,” championed the cause of immigrant farmers in the 1930’s and became a spiritual leader in the infamous Japanese Internment Camps during World War II. Ching pioneered the EAM and sought to establish links with the Asian churches. Bishop Mary Gray-Reeves of El Camino Real will be the celebrant and Vergara will preach.
Conference speakers will include clergy and lay leaders who emphasize the memory of those who pioneered EAM. Among key conference events:
• Bishop Stacy Sauls, chief operating officer of the Episcopal Church Center will keynote on “Domestic Mission: Focus on Poverty.”
• Dr. Rodger Nishioka, professor of Columbia Theological Seminary in Atlanta, GA, and noted motivational speaker, will keynote on “Global Mission: Focus on Asiamerica”
• The June 23 Eucharist service will feature a multicultural liturgy complete with Chinese dragon dance, Philippine gongs, Korean drums and colorful Asian cultures. Preacher will be Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori; the main celebrant is Rev. Dr. Fran Toy, first Asian American woman to be ordained in the Episcopal Church.
Complete information including registration is here
For more information, contact Vergara, email@example.com.
[Lambeth Palace -- Press Release] Thousands of people flocked to see Archbishop Justin in Chichester today (March 19) for the final stop on his journey in prayer.
Officials from Chichester Cathedral said 3,000 people were present to see the Archbishop of Canterbury, who will be enthroned in Canterbury this Thursday.
From 11.45am he walked from the Market Cross to the Chichester Cathedral along West Street, stopping regularly to speak to people.
The Archbishop said visiting the city and its cathedral was a “real treat” as he was not too familiar with the area.
In an interview with the BBC, the Archbishop said he is praying for those “really let down” let down by the church in the Diocese of Chichester.
In February Robert Coles, a retired priest from Eastbourne, was jailed for eight years for abusing three boys between 1978 and 1984.
Archbishop Justin spent the rest of the afternoon in the cathedral, speaking with people and leading hourly daily prayer sessions.
[Lambeth Palace -- Press Release] The Archbishop of Canterbury said today he was “overwhelmed” by the support of Cornish people on the fourth day of his pilgrimage – and that “nothing transforms us more than prayer.”
Archbishop Justin was visiting Cornwall on the fourth day of his journey in prayer, which concludes in Chichester tomorrow (March 19).
Speaking at Lemon Quay after a performance by local school children, the Archbishop said the county faces “particular economic challenges” but he was “optimistic” for the future.
He added: “I’m quite overwhelmed. There’s a big crowd. It’s a huge privilege to be here.”
The Archbishop announced he would spend return to Cornwall for a three-day visit in November, adding that he was looking forward to learning more about the area and work of the Church there.
Archbishop Justin will be enthroned at Canterbury Cathedral on Thursday 21st March.
[Anglican Communion News Service] Archbishop Thabo Makgoba of the Anglican Church of Southern Africa has urged Anglicans in Africa and around the world to support Earth Hour by “switching off your lights” and “switching on to saving the world.”
Earth Hour, observed this year on March 23, is an annual worldwide event organized by the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF). It encourages households and businesses to turn off non-essential lights for one hour to raise awareness of the need for action on climate change.
“In one hour you can change the world,” said Makgoba, who also chairs the Anglican Communion Environmental Network. “Let this be the first hour of a new life of energy saving, and living lightly.”
The archbishop acknowledged the importance of preserving the world for posterity. “We have no other option to preserving our world for future generations,” he said. “There is no planet B [and] we have no alternative!”
The event first took place in 2007 when 2.2 million residents of Sydney, Australia, turned off their non-essential lights, and in 2008 many other cities round the world did the same.
This Saturday (March 23), everyone on the planet is urged to switch off their lights from 8:30 – 9:30 p.m. to show their commitment to a sustainable future. They are then to make that commitment tangible in long-term choices for more environmentally friendly living.