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Canon Chuck Robertson installed as honorary canon in Aberdeen

Mon, 11/06/2017 - 4:14pm

[Episcopal News Service] The Rev. Chuck Robertson, canon for ministry beyond the Episcopal Church, was installed on Nov. 5 as an honorary canon of St. Andrew’s Episcopal Cathedral in Aberdeen during a Festal Evensong.

Presiding Bishop preaches in Aberdeen

Mon, 11/06/2017 - 4:12pm

[Episcopal News Service] Presiding Bishop Michael Curry preaches Nov. 5 during a Festal Evensong at St. Andrew’s Episcopal Cathedral in Aberdeen, Scotland, as part of a four-day visit to Scotland to celebrate the historic ties between the Episcopal Church and the Scottish Episcopal Church.

Archbishop Justin Welby preaches reconciliation to Kenya’s political leaders

Mon, 11/06/2017 - 1:27pm

[Anglican Communion News Service] The key players in Kenya’s disputed presidential elections – President Uhuru Kenyatta, opposition leader Raila Odinga and Supreme Court Chief Justice David Maraga – were present at All Saints’ Cathedral in Nairobi yesterday as Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby spoke of the importance of reconciliation. They were marking the centenary of Kenya’s mother-church, in a service shown live on national television. After the sermon, Kenyatta said he had heard the archbishop’s call, and shook hands with Odinga – their first meeting since the disputed October election.

Read the entire article here.

Diocesan leadership changes in the Dominican Republic

Mon, 11/06/2017 - 1:12pm

The Rt. Rev. Julio César Holguín Khoury retired from the Diocese of the Dominican Republic Nov. 1, and the Rt. Rev. Moisés Quezada Mota was installed as the next diocesan bishop. Photo: Diocese of the Dominican Republic

[Episcopal Diocese of the Dominican Republic] The Rt. Rev. Julio César Holguín Khoury retired Nov. 1, after 26 years as diocesan bishop of the Episcopal Church of the Dominican Republic. Retired bishops, active and retired priests, deacons, parishioners from around the country, members of Holguín’s family, members of the board of directors of the Dominican Development Group, and other international visitors celebrated Holguín’s extraordinary ministry at a Holy Eucharist at La Catedral de la Epifanía in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, at 3 p.m. Nov 1. A reception followed the service in the adjacent parish hall.

The Rt. Rev. William J. Skilton, assistant bishop of the Dominican Republic (retired), preached the sermon giving tribute to Holguín’s remarkable accomplishments and spiritual leadership and remembering several amusing incidents during their many years of work together. Holguín, Skilton and the Rt. Rev. Telésforo Isaac celebrated the Eucharist at the altar decorated with arrangements of white roses, gladioli and daisies.

Dominican diocesan leadership changes hands, and both leaders are celebrated for their service. Photo: Diocese of the Dominican Republic

The Rt. Rev. Moisés Quezada Mota was installed as the diocesan bishop at a ceremony in La Catedral de la Epifanía at 10 a.m. Nov. 4. Quezada was elected during a special convention of the Diocese of the Dominican Republic July 25, 2015, and consecrated on Feb. 13, 2016. He has served as bishop coadjutor since that date. At the installation ceremony, the Rt. Rev. Diane Jardine Bruce, bishop suffragan of the Diocese of Los Angeles, was the celebrant of the installation. The Rt. Rev. Lloyd Allen, bishop of the Diocese of Honduras, was the preacher. A reception and luncheon on the grounds of the cathedral followed the installation.

Quezada is the third Dominican to serve as Bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of the Dominican Republic following the Rt. Rev. Telésforo Isaac (1972-1991) and Holguín (1991-2017). Quezada was ordained to the diaconate on August 15, 1982, and to the priesthood on May 22, 1983. He has served in many churches throughout the Dominican Republic since his ordination to the priesthood and has represented the diocese in meetings of Province IX of The Episcopal Church. Quezada is married to Mary Jeannette Pringle Quezada, and they have two adult children and a grandchild.

Episcopal food pantries are part of nationwide network with goal of ending hunger in U.S.

Mon, 11/06/2017 - 12:48pm

Volunteer Jim Murphy, right, gathers a variety of food for Willetta Randle at Grace Food Pantry in Madison, Wisconsin. The pantry has been a ministry of Grace Episcopal Church since 1979. Photo: David Paulsen/Episcopal News Service

[Episcopal News Service – Madison, Wisconsin] Poverty and hunger are all too easy to overlook in Wisconsin’s capital city, where public discourse is dominated by the parallel and relatively affluent spheres of state government and the state’s flagship public university.

But wander east from the University of Wisconsin-Madison campus or head southwest down the steps of the Capitol, and you’ll find at Grace Episcopal Church  a ministry of nourishment that Willetta Randle, for one, relies on to put dinner on the table for her two young children.

The volunteers at Grace Food Pantry are friendly and helpful, Randle said while picking up bags of food on a summer afternoon. She visits “once in a while,” when she needs help filling her cabinets and refrigerator with food. “It comes in handy, especially when you’re on a tight budget,” she said.

‘Food and Faith’

Episcopal News Service’s five-part series focuses on anti-hunger efforts in the Episcopal Church, from food pantries to the church’s advocacy on government programs that fight hunger. Part 3 will post next week.

Despite the city’s median household income of $55,000, tight budgets are common in Madison. Census data show 19 percent of residents live below the poverty level, and dozens of food pantries across Dane County help provide for some of their most basic needs. Many of the pantries are part of a national network of faith-based and community partners with a shared goal: To make sure no one goes hungry – in the country, in Wisconsin, in Madison or in the neighborhood around Capitol Square that Grace Episcopal calls home.

The parish food pantry is an institution as ubiquitous as it is essential. Congregations across the country feed the hungry through pantries of all sizes, making this one of the most common and visible outreach ministries of the Episcopal Church and other churches and faith communities in the United States.

“The way the Episcopal Church wants to approach people in our country who are poor is not … with a sense of helping those who are other than us,” said the Rev. Melanie Mullen, the Episcopal Church’s director of reconciliation, justice and creation care. Building “a full community of change” means seeing our neighbors as like us – and, sometimes, in need of help, she said.

“We can have confidence to enter this arena boldly and talk about what’s right and what’s wrong and the fact that no one should be hungry among us.”

Congregations’ food ministries, no matter the denomination, are on the front lines of a multilayered response to food insecurity in America. The federal government defines food insecurity as lack of access to enough food to maintain an active and healthy life. Nationally, 41.2 million people, including 12.9 million children, were said to be food insecure in 2016, according to the nonprofit Feeding America.

Episcopal News Service, as part of its “Food and Faith” series on the Episcopal Church’s efforts to fight hunger, visited Madison’s Grace Episcopal Church in August to see how one successful food pantry works and how it collaborates with other institutions working on the issue at all levels.

Feeding America works at the national level to support its 200 affiliated regional food banks, which form the backbone of local efforts. Those affiliates, like Second Harvest Foodbank of Southern Wisconsin, collect large amounts of food and distribute it to where it is most needed.

Often where it is most needed is a food pantry like the one at Grace Episcopal Church in Madison.

Nearly 58,000 of the 510,000 residents of the city and surrounding Dane County, or 11.3 percent, are food insecure, according to the most recent data kept by Feeding America. Grace Food Pantry was created in 1979 to serve those residents, and now 38 years later, it operates as an independent nonprofit with a paid coordinator.

Volunteers and staff members at Grace Food Pantry assist guests at the pantry’s food counter on a Tuesday afternoon in August. Photo: David Paulsen/Episcopal News Service

The Episcopal Church’s Asset Map, which is still under development, shows more than 300 congregations offering food pantries, meal programs or both. Since the map’s participation rate so far is at about 20 percent, the actual number of feeding ministries likely is exponentially greater.

Their sizes range widely. Grace Food Pantry is among the more active ministries, open four days a week and serving 450 to 950 people a month. In a typical month, about 10,000 pounds of food is distributed. The pantry gets by on a $22,000 annual budget that still is largely funded by the congregation.

“It’s been a core part of our work and our ministry, and it receives a lot of financial support from the members of the church,” the Rev. Jonathan Grieser, Grace’s rector, said during an interview in his office. “It’s part of the gospel mission to feed the hungry.”

The fruits (and vegetables) of that gospel mission awaited Randle, 35, and the handful of other guests who were first in line when the food pantry opened at 1 p.m. on this Tuesday in August. A handwritten list was stuck to a wall next to the counter: Zucchini, tomatoes, cucumbers, star fruit, green beans, broccoli, onions, rutabaga, plumbs, kiwi, peaches, cauliflower.

That was only a partial list. Each guest who meets income qualifications can get a weekly allotment of food in amounts that vary with the size of the household. Randle received some eggs along with her produce. Meat also is included, and the variety of food can change week to week.

“You don’t get the same thing all the time,” Raymond Scott, a 67-year-old Air Force veteran, said as he waited his turn, his suitcase ready to be filled with food from the pantry.

Food banks aim to let no one go hungry

The source for much of the pantry’s food is a large warehouse seven miles away in the southeast corner of Madison.

Second Harvest’s facility on Dairy Drive boasts some impressive numbers. At 47,000 square feet, the warehouse houses offices, sorting and packing rooms, three coolers, several loading docks and row after row of stock shelves that typically hold about 1 million pounds of food, with a capacity for up to 1.7 million pounds.

Hundreds of volunteers contribute their time to Second Harvest each month, and a staff of eight drivers steer the agency’s six semi-tractor trailer trucks and three straight trucks across 16 counties in southwest Wisconsin, delivering enough food in 2016 for 14.3 million meals.

Dan Stein, executive director of Second Harvest Foodbank of Southern Wisconsin in Madison, discusses the operation of the food bank’s warehouse, which can hold up to 1.7 million pounds of food. Photo: David Paulsen/Episcopal News Service

Second Harvest’s general model for feeding the hungry is hardly unique. Feeding America assigns Second Harvest and other member food banks to serve distinct regions that include every county in the United States without overlapping. The food banks collect food and distribute it across their regions, over and over.  Often the Feeding America affiliate is the only food bank serving its communities, though some regions are served by additional food banks that aren’t affiliated with Feeding America.

As they feed the hungry, these agencies also function like laboratories for new anti-hunger initiatives.

Stein shows a can of “cream style corn” that has been relabeled for distribution to food pantries across Second Harvest’s 16-county region. Photo: David Paulsen/Episcopal News Service

“There’s no magic formula how to run your food bank. Everyone offers different programs and different ways to attack this problem,” Second Harvest Executive Director Dan Stein said during an interview at the Madison warehouse. “We all are each other’s best cheerleaders. We freely share each other’s best practices. We share things that were unsuccessful, so we don’t waste resources.”

Stein’s agency, for example, has found success working directly with farmers to grow crops that can be distributed by Second Harvest’s partner food pantries. In addition, Second Harvest sends its trucks more than 20 times a month to distribute food to people in places not already served by food pantries. It also has developed partnerships with health care providers and schools to promote nutrition.

Pantries like the one at Grace Episcopal, though, are still the indispensable “feet on the streets” in the communities Second Harvest serves, Stein said. They know their clients’ needs.

The pantries can place orders online, paying Second Harvest a fee for the food. Certain items are offered to the pantries a reduced rate or for free. Then the food bank’s transportation supervisor dispatches his drivers to make the requested deliveries.

Being part of a large network also offers economies of scale. Nationally, Feeding America solicits large corporate donations and develops relationships with national retailers, like Walmart, Kroger and Target, to donate their excess food to the regional food banks. Feeding America also is active on public policy, supporting federal programs that help feed low-income Americans, such the program commonly known as food stamps. The Episcopal Church shares those concerns and advocates for those programs through its Office of Government Relations.

Feeding America traces the organization’s history to what it credits as the first food pantry, started in 1967 by a Roman Catholic church in Phoenix, Arizona. In a domino effect, churches around the country began forming their own pantries, and in 1979, the national organization was created to leverage the coordinated work of member pantries. Many, but not all, of the food pantries run by Episcopal churches are affiliated with Feeding America.

“Solve hunger” is the mantra of today’s Feeding America, but that bold goal is also a practical one. For Feeding America, solving the problem means making sure no one goes hungry. The root causes of poverty are more complex. Solving poverty is not the organization’s specific mission, though it and other organizations, including the Episcopal Church, are tackling various aspects of the problem.

“I can think of nothing better than a society where we have a hunger-free America,” Catherine Davis, Feeding America’s chief marketing and communication officer, said in a phone interview with ENS. “And that’s actually our mission, to help create a hunger-free America. But the majority of our work goes to feeding people.”

That work continues seemingly without end. Hunger is better understood as a chronic social problem rather than a sudden individual emergency, Davis said. There always will be people seeking food assistance who are driven by unforeseen circumstances – a lost job, a car repair, a medical bill. At the same time, most of the people who visit food pantries have steady jobs. Those jobs just don’t pay enough to make ends meet.

Second Harvest is one of 200 food banks across the country that are affiliated with Feeding America, which has made “Solve Hunger” one of its defining goals. The food banks partner with food pantries like the one run by Grace Episcopal Church. Photo: David Paulsen/Episcopal News Service

“If the cure for hunger is food – I know it’s not that simple – then the cure exists,” Stein said, “because as much as 40 percent of the food grown in this county never makes it to our tables. It’s thrown away.” Getting food to those who need it, then, becomes a logistical and financial challenge.

Curing poverty is a more complex challenge, he said, and other organizations are working on different facets of the problem. Helping people find good-paying jobs is “the best battle against hunger and poverty,” Stein said, while food banks’ primary focus is eliminating the gap between the meals Americans have and the meals they need.

At Grace Episcopal, food and blessings to share

Eliminating that gap in Madison depends on the dedication of people like Vikki Enright, the Grace Food Pantry coordinator.

Enright had previously volunteered with the food pantry and with Porchlight, a homeless shelter that occupies the floor below the pantry. After leaving her job as a senior legislative editor for the state’s Legislative Reference Bureau, she embraced the new paid role as pantry coordinator.

Enright’s $13,000 salary is paid directly by the congregation, leaving the pantry to spend its $22,000 budget on food from Second Harvest, additional food from other sources and personal essentials. Enright also draws on the pantry budget to pay her assistant, who works six hours a week.

As coordinator, Enright works 16 hours a week placing orders with Second Harvest, soliciting additional food donations from parishioners, downtown retailers and restaurants, scheduling about 30 volunteers to bag and distribute the food and ensure the shelves are continuously stocked with both food and personal items, like toilet paper – “It’s almost as important as food,” she said.

Grace Food Pantry coordinator Vikki Enright helps volunteers Audrey Shomos and Jim Murphy as they fill grocery bags with food for the pantry’s guests in August. Photo: David Paulsen/Episcopal News Service

Last year, the pantry served more than 9,500 guests. The homeless population around Capitol Square makes up a portion of those guests, though others flock to Grace Food Pantry because it is a convenient stop on the city bus lines.

Randle, a nurse who lives with her children on Madison’s north side, brought her food home by bus this Tuesday afternoon. Caroline Harris said she, too, rides the bus to Grace Food Pantry when she needs to fill up her cart with produce.

“They give you mostly what you need,” Harris said. At age 55, she is out of work due to her severe arthritis, but she likes to prepare nutritious meals when her grandchildren come to visit. She said she typically only visits Grace Food Pantry a couple times a month because she’d prefer to share the blessings Enright’s team has to offer.

“I don’t like to overdo it, because I don’t like to take blessings from other people,” she said.

More people used Grace Food Pantry during the last recession, several years ago, Enright said. Visits declined as the local economy improved, but recently, she has noticed an increase in visitors as wages have stalled and rents have gone up.

Whatever her guests’ reasons for seeking help, Enright greets them with a smile and a friendly word as she tends to the work of the pantry with a seemingly boundless energy. The work keeps her perpetually upbeat.

“Every time something is frustrating or you’ve had a hard day with something, then something wonderful happens,” she said.

– David Paulsen is an editor and reporter for the Episcopal News Service. He can be reached at dpaulsen@episcopalchurch.org.

Historic American-Scottish roots celebrated through Presiding Bishop’s visit to Aberdeen

Mon, 11/06/2017 - 12:08pm

The ornate crests of the American states on the ceiling in the nave of St. Andrew’s Episcopal Cathedral in Aberdeen, Scotland, symbolize the deep connection between the Scottish and U.S.-based Episcopal churches. Photo: Matthew Davies/Episcopal News Service

[Episcopal News Service – Aberdeen, Scotland] Ornate crests of the American states decorate the ceiling of St. Andrew’s Episcopal Cathedral in Aberdeen, Scotland. It’s a reminder of the critical role the U.S.-based Episcopal Church played in laying the groundwork for global Anglicanism when it sent Samuel Seabury to the British Isles in 1784 to be consecrated as its first bishop.

Faced with an unworkable condition from the Church of England calling for Seabury to swear allegiance to the crown, he traveled to Aberdeen where three Scottish bishops agreed to consecrate him in return for promoting the Scottish Prayer Book liturgy back on American soil.

More than 230 years later, Presiding Bishop Michael Curry arrived in Aberdeen for a four-day visit to Scotland to recognize the importance of that significant moment in history and to celebrate the partnership that has flourished between the two provinces ever since. Curry is accompanied by Executive Assistant Sharon Jones and the Rev. Chuck Robertson, canon for ministry beyond the Episcopal Church, who was installed on Nov. 5 as an honorary canon of St. Andrew’s Episcopal Cathedral in Aberdeen during a Festal Evensong. Curry preached during the service.

“Our bishops today trace their succession to Samuel Seabury … so our roots really are here in Aberdeen, Scotland,” Curry told Episcopal News Service on Nov. 6 before joining a symposium exploring the social history and common interests of the Scottish and U.S.-based Episcopal churches. “Indeed, Scotland is our mother church, so it was good to come home and give thanks to our mother church and to affirm our continued partnership in Jesus Christ.”

Curry’s reference to coming home was mutually acknowledged by his Scottish hosts as he was invited during a post-service reception to cut a cake iced with the words “Welcome Home.” The delegation was then furnished with gifts of Scotch whisky and porridge stirrers, representing perhaps two longstanding staples in the Scottish diet.

The Most Rev. Mark Strange, bishop of Moray, Ross and Caithness and primus of the Scottish Episcopal Church, said that the Scottish Episcopal Church “is proud of its role in the coming into being of what is now the worldwide Anglican Communion and I am delighted to welcome the presiding bishop in his first visit to Scotland when we can share our past, present and future bonds of communion and concern for the people we serve in our respective provinces.”

Strange, who as a young boy sang in the choir at St. Andrew’s Cathedral, told ENS that for as long as he can remember “there has been a close link with America. Last night, I had the real pleasure of installing Chuck Robertson as a canon. I’ve watched canons from America being installed my whole life. And there’s a sense in which when I am in North America, this is home.

“For the Scottish Episcopal Church, just having the knowledge that somehow we are connected … means that we are more outward-looking than inward-looking.”

The historic bond that St. Andrew’s Cathedral shares with the Episcopal Church includes an invitation for the presiding bishop to nominate someone to be installed as an honorary canon.

“Their affection for our church and our affection for the Scottish Episcopal Church is longstanding and deep,” said Curry. “And now we must take that affection into concrete work that helps to change the world into something akin to God’s dream for it, and so Canon Robertson being made an honorary canon was a symbolic way of incarnating that in a human person.”

When Seabury reached London back in 1784, bishops in the Church of England thwarted his mission to the episcopate. The English church, standing firm in its post-Reformation ideals, insisted he swear an oath of allegiance to the king. Such an oath would have contravened America’s Declaration of Independence, and with the colonies having won the war of independence one year earlier, Seabury was wise to decline.

Instead, he took to the road, traveling 400 miles north to Scotland. There the Episcopal Church in Aberdeen and Orkney willingly assisted with his consecration, and with a more workable condition – that he promote the Scottish Prayer Book when he returns home.

St. Andrew’s Cathedral in Aberdeen, Scotland, holds a special place in the legacies of both the U.S.-based Episcopal Church and the Scottish Episcopal Church. Photo: Matthew Davies/Episcopal News Service

This milestone is often heralded as the main catalyst, if not the onset, of what eventually would become known as the Anglican Communion. The relationship between the U.S.-based Episcopal Church and the Scottish Episcopal Church has deepened and flourished over the more than two centuries since that momentous occasion, including with a close companion diocese relationship between the dioceses of Connecticut, and Aberdeen and Orkney.

To this day, despite several prayer book revisions, the Rite I Eucharistic Prayer in the Episcopal Church’s Book of Common Prayer is strikingly similar to the same liturgy found in the Scottish Prayer Book.

But Curry also noted that “the red, white and blue — and that particular shade of blue in the Episcopal Church flag — hails from Scotland. And indeed, our very name, the Episcopal Church comes from the Scottish Episcopal Church. So, in those symbolic yet significant ways, there are ties that bind us. But I have a feeling there’s a deeper DNA. There’s kind of an American spirit that has a lot to do, I think, with the spirit of Scotland, and that sense of freedom and independence. That’s pretty American, and I have a feeling we get that from Scotland.”

Samuel Seabury

Seabury was born in Groton, Connecticut, and graduated from Yale College in 1748. He read theology under his father and then studied medicine at the University of Edinburgh, 1752-1753. Seabury was ordained deaconon Dec. 21, 1753, and priest on Dec. 23, 1753, in England. He was a missionary of the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel at New Brunswick, New Jersey, 1754-1757, and rector at Jamaica, New York, 1757-1766.

From 1766 to 1776 he served as rector of St. Peter’s Church, Westchester, New York, and from 1776 to 1783 he was in private medical practice and chaplain to British troops at Staten Island and New York. He wrote forceful pamphlets in defense of loyalty to the British Crown. On Mar. 25, 1783, he was elected bishop of Connecticut and was consecrated at Aberdeen, Scotland, Nov. 14, 1784, by three nonjuring bishops of the Scottish Episcopal Church.

He also served as bishop of Rhode Island, 1790-1796 and as presiding bishop from 1789 to 1792. He was a high churchman in the tradition of the nonjurors and the Caroline Divines. A valid episcopacy and the threefold orders of clergy were central concerns for him. He died in New London, Connecticut. Seabury and the passing of the episcopate to the Episcopal Church are commemorated on Nov. 14 in the Episcopal calendar of the church year.

In the decades following Seabury’s death, the communion grew geographically and numerically, largely through the missionary movement, and many more-complex cultural and contextual issues came into play. Other than in its prayer book, the Anglican Communion staved off making any foundational declaration until the 1888 Lambeth Conference endorsed the Chicago-Lambeth Quadrilateral, originally adopted by the Episcopal Church’s House of Bishops in 1886.

The Quadrilateral named four principles of Anglicanism: the Holy Scriptures, as containing all things necessary to salvation; the creeds – specifically the Apostles’ and Nicene creeds – as the sufficient statement of Christian faith; the sacraments of baptism and Holy Communion; and the historic episcopate, locally adapted. (A U.S. Episcopal priest, William Reed Huntington, is credited with proposing the four elements in an 1870 essay.)

Today, the communion encompasses 39 autonomous provinces with some 80 million Anglicans in 165 countries worldwide. But it’s anyone’s guess what the landscape of the Anglican Communion would look like in 2017 had Seabury not ventured to Scotland in search of his episcopal consecration.

But the path of the Anglican Communion has been far from smooth at times, with the spotlight over recent decades highlighting the differences over biblical interpretation concerning women’s ordination and human sexuality issues. To date, the two churches are the only ones to have removed the definition that marriage is between a man and a woman, thus enabling gay and lesbian Christians to be married in church.

“The Anglican Communion has its difficulties, has its concerns, and we need to find ways of working together so that when we really get down to issues, we know that the issues we are talking about as the ones that concern us for the world,” said Strange. “For a small church like ours to be able to be a part of a larger institution is always important … I am looking forward to maintaining what is clearly already a loving relationship and to finding ways to build on that.”

Curry agreed. “We are not isolated, disparate individuals. We are part of a greater whole. Dr. Martin Luther King said we are tied in networks of mutuality in a single garment of destiny. The truth is we are interconnected, we are interrelated, and the more we use our interconnectedness and our relationships for the good, the better off the whole world is.”

The visit will continue in Edinburgh with a possible visit to the Scottish Parliament and a meeting with Scotland’s First Minister Nicola Sturgeon, according to the Scottish Episcopal Church’s director of communications.

— Matthew Davies is advertising and web manager for the Episcopal News Service.

El Obispo Presidente sobre el tiroteo en la iglesia de Texas

Mon, 11/06/2017 - 11:47am

“Ofrezco esta oración por aquellos que han muerto, por aquellos que están sufriendo, por aquellos que todavía están sanando de las heridas físicas y de las cicatrices emocionales, espirituales y mentales”, declaró el Obispo Presidente de la Iglesia Episcopal y Primado Michael B. Curry después del tiroteo del 5 de noviembre en la Primera Iglesia Bautista, Sutherland Springs, Texas. “Oramos por los que sufren y por los que han muerto. ¿Rezarás conmigo?”

El Obispo presidente Curry ofreció sus comentarios durante una visita a la Iglesia Episcopal Escocesa en Aberdeen, Escocia. He aquí los comentarios:

Estoy en Aberdeen, Escocia, donde anoche tuvimos un servicio en la Catedral de San Andrés, dándole gracias a Dios por las profundas raíces de la Iglesia Episcopal aquí en la Iglesia Episcopal Escocesa. La Iglesia Episcopal Escocesa es en verdad la iglesia madre de la Iglesia Episcopal, y damos gracias por los lazos que nos unen.

Pero incluso cuando dimos las gracias la noche anterior, recibimos noticias de que en Sutherland Springs, Texas, un pistolero ingresó a la Primera Iglesia Bautista, y ahora unas 26 personas han muerto y muchos más están heridos y afligidos. Ofrezco esta oración por aquellos que han muerto, por aquellos que están sufriendo, por aquellos que todavía están sanando de las heridas físicas y de las cicatrices emocionales, espirituales y mentales. Mientras rezo, los invito a orar la oración que el Señor nos enseñó. Los invito a que oren para que se haga la voluntad de Dios, para que Dios nos guíe a encontrar una mejor manera, a encontrar pasos concretos para que este tipo de cosas ya no suceda. Pero, sobre todo, rezamos por los que sufren y por los que han muerto. ¿Rezarás conmigo?

Padre nuestro que estás en el cielo,
santificado sea tu nombre,
venga tu reino,
hágase tu voluntad,
en la tierra como en el cielo.
Danos hoy nuestro pan de cada día,
y perdónanos nuestras ofensas,
como también nosotros perdonamos

a los que nos ofenden.
No nos dejes caer en la tentación,
y líbranos del mal.
Porque tuyo es el reino,
el poder y la gloria,
por los siglos de los siglos. Amén.

El Señor te bendiga y te guarde. El Señor haga resplandecer su rostro sobre ti y sea misericordioso contigo. Que el Señor haga brillar la luz de su semblante sobre ti y nos dé su paz en este día y para siempre. Amén.

El Reverendísimo Michael B. Curry
Obispo Presidente y Primado
Iglesia Episcopal

Live social media coverage of Episcopal delegation at COP23

Mon, 11/06/2017 - 10:41am

Episcopalians from across the church are heading to Bonn, Germany, for the 23rd United Nations climate change conference, where they hope to continue the advocacy begun at the past two gatherings.

Officially known as the 23rd Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, the Nov. 6-17 conference is an annual intergovernmental meeting to focus on global dialogue and action.

Presiding Bishop speaks on Texas church shooting

Mon, 11/06/2017 - 8:47am


[Episcopal Church Office of Public Affairs] “I offer this prayer for those who have died, for those who are suffering, for those who are still healing from physical wounds, and the emotional, spiritual and mental scar,” Presiding Bishop Michael B. Curry stated following the Nov. 5 shooting at the First Baptist Church, Sutherland Springs, Texas. “We pray for those who suffer and for those who have died. Will you pray with me?”

Curry offered his comments during a visit to the Scottish Episcopal Church in Aberdeen, Scotland. The text follows:

“I’m in Aberdeen, Scotland, where last night we had a service at St. Andrew’s Cathedral, giving God thanks for the deep roots of the Episcopal Church here in the Scottish Episcopal Church. The Scottish Episcopal Church is indeed the mother church of the Episcopal Church, and we give thanks for the ties that bind us together.

“But even as we gave thanks last evening, we received word that in Sutherland Springs, Texas, a gunman entered the First Baptist Church, and now some 26 people have been killed and many more wounded and afflicted. I offer this prayer for those who have died, for those who are suffering, for those who are still healing from physical wounds, and the emotional, spiritual and mental scars. As I pray and invite you to pray the prayer the Lord taught us. I invite you to pray that God’s will might be done, that God might guide us to find a better way, to find concrete steps so that this kind of thing doesn’t happen anymore. But above all, we pray for those who suffer and for those who have died. Will you pray with me?

“Our Father, Who art in heaven
Hallowed be Thy Name,
Thy kingdom come,
Thy will be done,
on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread,
and forgive us our trespasses,
as we forgive those who trespass against us;
and lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from evil.
For thine is the kingdom,
The power and the glory,
For ever and ever. Amen.

“The Lord bless you and keep you. The Lord make his face to shine upon you and be gracious to you. The Lord lift up the light of his countenance upon you and give us all his peace this day and forevermore. Amen.”

The Most Rev. Michael B. Curry
Presiding Bishop and Primate
The Episcopal Church

Liturgical texts published for 2018 Week of Prayer for Christian Unity

Fri, 11/03/2017 - 3:10pm

[Anglican Communion News Service] The 2018 Week of Prayer for Christian Unity, which traditionally takes place in the northern hemisphere each January, has been prepared by the churches of the Caribbean.  The annual event usually takes place between the feast of St. Peter on Jan. 18 and the feast of St. Paul on Jan. 25. Some southern hemisphere countries hold the week on a different date to avoid January holidays.

Read the entire article here.

Ugandan Mothers’ Union leader helps overcome HIV

Fri, 11/03/2017 - 3:06pm

[Anglican Communion News Service] A lay Anglican woman in Uganda is helping to build an HIV-competent community and church in a country where the epidemic is still a big challenge. Josephine Kasaato is president of the Mothers’ Union in the Namirembe Diocese in the capital of Uganda, Kampala. She is using her position to create awareness and educate the community about HIV and AIDS. Her voice is often heard across the diocese’s 65 parishes where she censures stigma, discrimination and denial – key challenges in the struggle against the virus.

Read the entire article here.

Anglican and Lutheran leaders speak out against niqab ban

Fri, 11/03/2017 - 2:42pm

[Anglican Communion News Service] The Anglican bishops of Montreal and Quebec have joined the bishop of the Eastern Synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada to speak out against a new law that bans the wearing of the niqab – the Islamic face covering – in the province of Quebec from people delivering or receiving a public service. Bill 62 was passed by the Quebec National Assembly in October and is described as “an act to foster adherence to state religious neutrality.”

Read the entire article here.

Episcopalians say faith and fitness can unite to strengthen spiritual and physical muscles

Fri, 11/03/2017 - 1:48pm

Yoga students learn the crescent pose, as well as receive the Eucharist at YogaMass, an idea created by the Rev. Gena Davis and run with Rev. John K. Graham, in Houston, Texas and beyond. Photo: Jonathan Dow/YogaMass

[Episcopal News Service] Something happened when the Rev. Gena Davis balanced on one leg for tree pose and reached her arms skyward while squatting for chair pose in yoga class. Something transformational.

“It starts as a physical practice, and it can move into a spiritual practice. And that’s when the real question comes: What is this, and how can I make sense of this as a priest?” said Davis, who was vicar of Grace Episcopal Church in Houston, Texas, at the time. She did her yoga teacher training then, too.

“In church, some people feel they’re worshipping in their head. This is a way to bring the body into worship. We totally recognize the mind-body-spirit connection. They’re integrated. It’s really a movement toward wholeness.”

Many Episcopalians are recognizing that Christians and other spiritual seekers often need a more holistic approach to practicing their faith, fellowship and worship.

Fitness is one way. Faith and fitness can go hand in hand in many types of exercise, be it mediation while running, taking a boot camp class or practicing yoga.

Davis’ personal yoga practice inspired her to co-create YogaMass, which incorporates the Eucharist. Partnering with the Rev. John K. Graham, president and CEO of the Institute for Spirituality and Health at the Texas Medical Center and interim priest at Grace Church, she received approval from Texas Bishop Andy Doyle to create a liturgy for the YogaMass. The yoga worship services began in January 2016.

Davis leads the yoga flow; she and Graham take turns sharing the gospel; they both celebrate Eucharist; and sometimes they have someone else lead the meditation portion. While the ritual and practice started at Grace Church, they now move to different locations throughout Houston, and have plans for spots in California. Davis wants to share this experience with as many people in as many places as possible.

(Left to right) Cyrus Wirls on dgembe drum and Stuart Nelson on sitar play music while the Rev. John K. Graham and the Rev. Gena Davis lead the class up front near the altar during YogaMass. Davis started the program in 2016, at Grace Episcopal Church in Houston, Texas, and now takes it across the area, as well as California, to spread awareness of its fusion of ancient yoga practices and Christian principles. Davis and others provide classes that also act as a worship and meditation service. Photo: Jonathan Dow/YogaMass

She wrote a book, “YogaMass: Embodying Christ Consciousness,” published by Balboa Press in April, detailing how yoga’s ancient principles are complementary with Christian values. The book’s first line, “This is my body,” is what Davis says every time she celebrates the Eucharist.

“As Episcopalians, we know those are the words Jesus spoke on his last night. Those are Eucharistic words. Those are our words as faithful Christians, and to bring it home and say it yourself, that brings up all sorts of possibility for exploration,” Davis said. “I think that’s too powerful to pass up. We can’t ignore the body. It’s our way of experiencing life.”

Practicing yoga has opened up Christianity for Davis. It’s a perspective that’s deepened her faith. The practice can broaden the boundaries as well. People in their 20s have told her they’re not comfortable in traditional church settings, but they still want to worship. YogaMass is their answer.

“There’s this huge fitness craze out there. I see people get on their mats and feel so good, but what they’re longing for is that connection with other people, and the Divine, and that’s God. Sometimes they can’t name that,” Davis said.

 Fitness as outreach

Drawing people from the community who might not otherwise go to church is a big motivator for churches to host fitness classes.

“Big churches in the Baby Boomer generation saw their fitness centers as a type of YMCA, a tremendous outreach,” said the Rev. Hillary Raining, who teaches yoga at St. Christopher’s Episcopal Church in Gladwyne, Pennsylvania. “Taking care of your body is a Christian value. Paul tells us our body is a temple of the Holy Spirit; and I don’t think you’d leave your church temple in disarray.”



People seeking martial arts might find themselves at St. Thomas in New Windsor, New York. The Hudson Valley church has a tai-chi-wushu kung fu fusion fitness class on Saturdays through mid-December.

Saint John’s Episcopal Church in Memphis, Tennessee, has a Parish Life Center open to parishioners and the community. The center offers sports, group-fitness classes, personal training, an indoor track, basketball court, weight machines, recovery groups, small-group meetings, neighborhood gatherings and dinners. Today’s group fitness classes include tai chi, yoga, Pilates, post-pregnancy classes, mother-and-child stroller fitness and a diverse fitness adventure-oriented class.

It’s basically a free gym behind the church connected by a covered driveway, operated with Christian values that anyone can use, as long as they follow the rules of conduct, said Marietta Haaga, director of recreation. Of course, donations are accepted.

Parishioners raised the money to build the center in 1999, as a recreation outreach ministry. Some instructors start off their classes with prayer. “Keeping people on track, physically, mentally and spiritually is what we’re about,” said Haaga, who is also a personal trainer. “Really, our philosophy and ministry is to make sure people stay healthy in mind, soul and body.”

Providing a place for people to exercise in a good, clean, safe and Christian environment accomplishes that goal. Sometimes people tell Haaga they went to a church service because they heard about it at the Parish Life Center. The center also offers speakers, health fairs and blood drives.

Fitness as worship

You don’t have to tell Paige Lollis that faith and fitness can be intertwined. She was the catalyst of such a combination at her church, St. Philips Episcopal Church in Frisco, Texas. It began when Lollis took Pilates with Christi Price, a certified instructor and fellow woman of faith. They transformed their private Pilates session into a worship workout, incorporating faith-based music and scripture.

The Faith and Fitness ministry at St. Philips Episcopal Church in Frisco, Texas, offers Pilates and Holy Yoga classes, a program begun by church member Paige Lollis. Photo: Christi Price

Lollis liked it so much, she talked to Kelley Prahl, then the church’s director of adult discipleship. They started offering six-class sessions of yoga every season. Bible verses are read and Christian music is played in each class. This past season, they added Holy Yoga taught by Maureen Beville, an instructor certified in the gospel-centered yoga with its own training certification.

“When you come to church, you meet God on your pew, whereas with this, you meet God on your mat,” Lollis said. “Instead of the instructor telling you to lift your hands to the ceiling, it’s raising your hands to the Lord. We’re very intentional. We want to center our minds on the Word of God and integrate it into our muscle memory.”

Class fees range from $10 to $15, and a portion of proceeds go to a charitable organization, most recently, the Redeemed Women ministry.

Stevi McCoy, the church’s director of community life, loves taking the Pilates class. “This is another way to worship; we’re trying to offer the biggest selection of ways to worship and fellowship and grow as disciples,” McCoy said.

“I feel like any other kind of exercise classes focuses on you; in these classes, you focus on God. That’s the biggest difference. You have thanksgiving for your life.”

Fitness as meditation

In Gladwyne, Raining teaches an ancient type of yoga called ashtanga at her Pennsylvania church. The free classes are twice a week and available to all members of the community. She starts class with a meditation that blends Christian and yoga principles, gives a mini sermon, instructs students in their yoga poses and closes with a meditation.

“What I found in yoga is a beautiful blend of inward change that has an outward catalyst,” Raining said.

Yoga instructor and spiritual leader Amy Dolan and the Rev. Hillary Raining, who teaches yoga at St. Christopher’s Episcopal Church in Gladwyne, Pennsylvania, are co-authoring a book, “Faith with a Twist: A 30 Day Yoga Journey.” Photo: HillaryRaining.com

Other kinds of exercise can be meditative too. The priest loves to run and hike. She usually listens to music, but she can decide to spend 10 minutes of that time as a meditation by setting the playlist to hymns. As a Lenten discipline, she once fasted from listening to music while running and listened to the silence instead.

“Yoga has the advantage because it’s built into the aura of the practice. But any fitness practice done with intention can bring you closer to God,” Raining said.

With fellow yoga instructor and spiritual leader Amy Dolan, Raining is also writing a book, “Faith with a Twist: A 30 Day Yoga Journey,” which she hopes to offer at the 79th General Convention in July in Austin, Texas. She’s also in the process of building a woman’s spiritual and wellness website, called The Hive.

You don’t have to be scared that you’re following Buddhism or Hinduism when practicing yoga, these Christian yoga teachers say. The parallels are a natural fit. For example, yoga’s drishti technique uses a specific gazing direction for the eyes to control attention, according to Yoga Journal.

It’s a Sanskrit term for your focal gazing point, which helps you concentrate, stay balanced and go deeper into the posture.

“If your eyes are on something moving, you will fall down,” Raining said. “I think that’s a really Christian thing to think too: Whatever you’re keeping your gaze on that’s true and holy, not the temptations and distractions, when your gaze is focused on Christ, that’s where you’re heading. I can practice it on my mat, and I can practice it in my life.”

— Amy Sowder is a special correspondent for the Episcopal News Service and a freelance writer and editor based in Brooklyn. She can be reached at amysowderepiscopalnews@gmail.com.

Episcopal climate-talks delegation plans to continue church’s advocacy

Fri, 11/03/2017 - 12:16pm



[Episcopal News Service] Episcopalians from across the church are heading to Bonn, Germany, for the 23rd United Nations climate change conference, where they hope to continue the advocacy begun at the past two gatherings.

Officially known as the 23rd Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, the Nov. 6-17 conference is an annual intergovernmental meeting to focus on global dialogue and action around the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. Fiji is presiding over COP23 in Bonn with the support of the German government. More information on COP23 can be found here.

Previous meetings have produced the 1997 Kyoto Protocol and the 2015 Paris Agreement, which serves as the basis for standards on climate action and lowering carbon emissions.

Appointed by Presiding Bishop Michael Curry, the 11-member COP23 delegation will share Episcopal Church resolutions on climate change and information about the church and its ministries centered on ecojustice. Led by Diocese California Bishop Marc Andrus, the delegation will offer a spiritual presence through daily interfaith prayer and worship, and by encouraging active churchwide participation by Episcopalians through virtual participation and social media.

“Our goals are to build on the work done at previous conferences by urging member states to implement the Paris Agreement and pay particular attention to developing nations and the poor,” said the Rev. Canon Charles Robertson, canon to the presiding bishop for ministry beyond the Episcopal Church, in a press release.

Robertson said the delegation also hopes to “network within the accredited and public zones of the conference to spread the word about what the Episcopal Church is doing on climate issues.”

In addition, the delegation hopes its efforts will “raise awareness across the Episcopal Church of the importance of engaging on climate change as Christians,” according to Robertson, and “digitally engage Episcopalians in that work.”

This event marks the third Episcopal delegation to attend a COP meeting. A delegation attended COP21 in Paris in 2015, advocating for an agreement aligning with General Convention resolutions related to climate change. In 2016, a delegation traveled to Marrakesh, Morocco, for COP22, which focused on implementing the Paris Agreement and birthed the “We’re Still In [the Paris Agreement]” movement.

The Paris Agreement, which went into effect Nov. 4, 2016, calls on the countries of the world to limit carbon emissions, which will require a decrease in dependence on fossil fuels in favor of renewable energy sources; and for developed countries, those responsible for the majority of emissions both historically and today, to commit to $100 billion in development aid annually by 2020 to developing countries.

The agreement, which is a legally binding agreement, established specific actions and targets for reducing greenhouse gases emissions, mitigating and adapting to the effects of climate change, and financing mitigation and adaptation efforts in developing countries. Signatory countries agreed to work to limit global temperature rise to below 2 degrees Celsius and to make strong efforts to keep the rise to 1.5 degrees Celsius.

The Bonn meeting takes place against the backdrop of President Donald Trump’s oft-repeated promise to fulfill his campaign vow to withdraw the United States from the Paris Agreement and curb the country’s commitment to reduce its reliance on fossil fuels. According to the agreement’s rule, the United States cannot actually withdraw until 2020.

He claimed in his initial June 1 announcement that the pact was bad for the U.S. economy but said he might be open to renegotiating its terms to be more “pro-American.” That conditional approach has continued.

Our position on the Paris agreement has not changed. @POTUS has been clear, US withdrawing unless we get pro-America terms.

— Sarah Sanders (@PressSec) September 16, 2017

Trump has called human-caused climate change a “hoax” and the concept of global warming a Chinese plot.

The concept of global warming was created by and for the Chinese in order to make U.S. manufacturing non-competitive.

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 6, 2012

The New York Times reported Nov. 2 that the Trump administration will promote coal, natural gas and nuclear energy as an answer to climate change at a presentation in Bonn.

How to join the delegation’s participation

* Follow the delegation via its website, via Twitter (#EpiscopalClimate @EpiscoClimate) and on Facebook.

*Pray for climate action.

* Share parish or faith community activities on climate action here.

* Send prayer requests, personal poems or prayers for consideration at the interfaith service in Bonn here.


The delegation brings together a range of environmental, liturgical and churchwide experience in their representation of the presiding bishop.

The members of the Episcopal Church delegation with accredited observer status are: the Rt. Rev. Marc Andrus, bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of California; Jack Cobb, domestic and environmental policy advisor, Episcopal Church Office of Government Relations; and Lynnaia Main, Episcopal Church representative to the United Nations.

Observer status allows each of these team members the ability to brief U.N. representatives on General Convention climate resolutions and to attend a variety of meetings in the official zone. Additionally, Andrus has been invited to address the inaugural UN meeting of the “We’re Still In [the Paris Agreement]” movement.

Other team members tasked with monitoring U.N. negotiations and networking are:

  • Sheila Andrus, ecological entomologist and science manager based in the Episcopal Diocese of California
  • The Rev. Andrew Barnett, associate for music and worship at the Washington National Cathedral and environmental scholar
  • Michael Coffey, an atmospheric scientist and professor at the University of the South, Sewanee
  • Nathan Empsall, Episcopal Church Global Partnerships/UN intern and communications specialist, and Yale Divinity School seminarian
  • Perry Hodgkins Jones, writer and member of the Episcopal Church Advisory Council on the Stewardship of Creation
  • The Rev. Melanie Mullen, Episcopal Church director for reconciliation, justice and creation care
  • Tom Poynor, Episcopal Church chaplain, University of California-Berkeley and scholar in theology and the arts, Diocese of California
  • Bill Slocumb, director of Episcopal Camps and Conference Centers and member of the Episcopal Communicators

For more information contact Lynnaia Main at lmain@episcopalchurch.org.

Episcopal News Service presenta nuevo sitio web

Fri, 11/03/2017 - 11:39am

[Oficina de Relaciones Públicas de la Iglesia Episcopal] Episcopal News Service (ENS), el galardonado servicio de noticias de la Iglesia Episcopal, acaba de inaugurar una nueva y avanzada página web en  www.episcopalnewsservice.org.

Visualmente atractiva, fácil de manejar y adaptada a dispositivos móviles, la nueva página web fue diseñada para mejorar la experiencia integral del usuario, crear conciencia del servicio de noticias y generar ulterior interés y participación en los ministerios transformadores de la Iglesia Episcopal.

ENS ofrece reportajes y análisis en profundidad de noticias locales, regionales, nacionales e internacionales para los episcopales y otras personas interesadas en la misión y ministerio de la Iglesia. Al ofrecer cobertura por escrito y en medios de difusión múltiples, es la fuente de noticias digital auspiciada oficialmente por la Iglesia Episcopal.

“ENS seguirá priorizando el reportaje sobre temas de justicia social, e inspirando a las personas a actuar, participar y conectarse para promover cambios significativos en el mundo”, apuntó la Rda. Mary Frances Schjonberg,  jefa de redacción interina de ENS. “ENS también proseguirá su confiable cobertura de la constante labor de la Iglesia a través de sus órganos de gobierno y sus prioridades de misión”.

Entre las muchas nuevas características y mejoras que ampliarán la experiencia del usuario se cuentan: contenido de noticias organizado en menor número de secciones con énfasis en temas y tópicos y una avanzada función de búsqueda.

Episcopal News Service es un ministerio periodístico bien establecido que es fundamental en la evangelización digital y en informar a los episcopales y a otras personas  acerca de cómo la Iglesia Episcopal vive en el Movimiento de Jesús y hace realidad el evangelio en el mundo”, apuntaba Matt Davies, encargado de la publicidad y administrador del servicio digital. “Con nuestro receptivo sitio web y nuestro continuo énfasis editorial en los problemas de justicia social, el equipo de ENS cree que ha fusionado ingredientes esenciales para satisfacer el apetito de activismo y participación sociales, y esperamos despertar el gusto de una nueva generación de activistas que anhelan hacer suya la fórmula por el cambio global”.

Elementos clave de www.episcopalnewsservice.org

  • El nuevo sitio web ENS incorpora las populares secciones de anuncios de empleos [Jobs & Calls], eventos [Events], libros [Books], comunicados de prensa [Press Releases] y artículos noticiosos sobre personas.
  • ENS sigue alentando a las diócesis y congregaciones a presentar artículos noticiosos sobre ministerios locales y acontecimientos importantes en la vida de la Iglesia. Las normas de presentación de artículos a ENS se encuentran aquí.
  • Se seguirán ofreciendo oportunidades de patrocinio y publicidad a agencias y organizaciones relacionadas con la Iglesia que deseen dar a conocer sus ministerios, servicios, eventos, marcas y productos.

Más información sobre oportunidades en ENS se pueden obtenerse de Davies en mdavies@episcopalchurch.org.

Para presentar información

ENS ofrece las siguientes vías para compartir sus noticias.

  • Para presentar un comunicado de prensa para su inclusión en Episcopal News Service, haga clic aquí.
  • Para publicar una nota sobre personas (por ejemplo, un nuevo cargo, una ordenación, un premio o un honor), haga clic aquí.
  • Para publicar un listado de empleo o de llamado, haga clic aquí.
  • Para publicar un listado de eventos, haga clic aquí.
  • Para publicar un listado de libros, haga clic aquí.

Historic Anglican-Oriental Orthodox agreement on the Holy Spirit signed in Dublin

Thu, 11/02/2017 - 3:52pm

[Anglican Communion News Service] Theologians from the Anglican Communion and Oriental Orthodox Churches have signed an historic agreement on the Holy Spirit. The Agreed Statement on the Procession and Work of the Holy Spirit was signed on Oct. 27, the end of a week of discussions by the Anglican Oriental-Orthodox International Commission (AOOIC) and concludes two years of work on the subject.

Read the entire article here.

Episcopal News Service launches new website

Wed, 11/01/2017 - 2:30pm

[Episcopal Church Office of Public Affairs] Episcopal News Service (ENS), the award-winning news service of the Episcopal Church, has launched a leading-edge new website at  www.episcopalnewsservice.org.

Visually appealing, easy-to-navigate and mobile-friendly, the new ENS website was designed to improve the overall user experience, raise awareness of the news service and generate further interest and engagement in the life-changing ministries of the Episcopal Church.

ENS offers in-depth reporting and analysis of local, regional, national and international news for Episcopalians and others interested in the church’s mission and ministry. Providing written and multimedia coverage, it is the officially sponsored online news source of the Episcopal Church.

“ENS will continue to place an emphasis on reporting about issues of social justice, and inspiring people to act, engage and connect to make a difference in the world,” noted the Rev. Mary Frances Schjonberg,  ENS interim managing editor. “ENS will also continue its reliable coverage of the ongoing work of the church through its governance and mission priorities.”

Among the many new features and improvements that will enhance the user experience are: news content organized in fewer sections with an emphasis on issues and topics and an advanced search function.

“The Episcopal News Service is a long-standing ministry of storytelling that is pivotal in digital evangelism and informing Episcopalians and others about how the Episcopal Church lives into the Jesus Movement and lives out the gospel in the world,” noted Matt Davies, ENS advertising and web manager. “With our new responsive website and our continued editorial emphasis on issues of social justice, the ENS team believes it has blended together crucial ingredients to satisfy the hunger for advocacy and engagement, and hopefully ignite the palates of a new generation of activists who long to add to the recipe for global change.”

Key elements of www.episcopalnewsservice.org

  • New ENS website incorporates the popular reader-generated sections for advertising Jobs & Calls, Events, Books, Press Releases and People news items.
  • ENS continues to encourage dioceses and congregations to submit news stories about local ministries and important developments in the life of the church. The ENS submission guidelines are available here.
  • Opportunities for sponsorship and publicity will continue to be offered to church-related agencies and organizations wishing to raise awareness of their ministries, services, events, brands and products.

Further information about opportunities on ENS is available from Davies at mdavies@episcopalchurch.org.

Submitting information

ENS offers the following ways to share your news.

  • To submit a press release for inclusion on the Episcopal News Service, click here.
  • To publish a People news item (e.g. a new position, ordination, award or honor), click here.
  • To publish a Job or Call listing, click here.
  • To publish an Event listing, click here.
  • To publish a Book listing, click here.

Church of England bishops to remain in reformed House of Lords

Wed, 11/01/2017 - 1:54pm

[Anglican Communion News Service] The 26 Church of England bishops with places in the upper house of the United Kingdom’s Parliament will retain their places under new plans to reform the House of Lords. Bishops have been part of England’s governance since absolute rule by monarchs in the days long before the emergence of democracy in the country. Today the House of Lords includes the archbishops of Canterbury and York, the bishops of London, Durham and Winchester, and 21 other diocesan bishops by seniority of service. For a short transitional period, women in the episcopate take precedence over male colleagues in filling vacancies in the 21 other bishops.

Read the entire article here.

Archbishop Welby’s comment leads to development of African solar project

Wed, 11/01/2017 - 1:52pm

[Anglican Communion News Service] A comment made by the archbishop of Canterbury during his visit to the Holy Land in April has resulted in a pioneering green energy project for churches in Africa. During his two-week visit, Archbishop Justin Welby met Rabbi Yonatan Neril, the founder and executive director of the Jerusalem-based NGO, the Interfaith Center for Sustainable Development (ICSD). Welby heard about ICSD’s collaborative project with the social enterprise Gigawatt Global (GWG) to deploy solar fields on church lands in Africa. In Rwanda, GWG installed Africa’s first commercial-scale solar field on land belonging to the Agahozo Shalom Youth Village for orphans from the genocide. Welby suggested that Neril contact the Anglican Church of Southern Africa (ACSA), which gives a significant priority to environmental action.

Read the entire article here.

Archbishop of Cape Town says ‘the ANC’s time may have passed’

Wed, 11/01/2017 - 1:47pm

[Anglican Communion News Service] Time may be coming to an end for the “glorious movement” of the ANC, the Archbishop of Cape Town, Thabo Makgoba, said in an outspoken attack during a discussion on the Power98 radio program “Power Talk.” The ANC – the African National Congress – has its roots in the anti-Apartheid struggle. It was the party of Nelson Mandela and has formed the government in South Africa since the end of Apartheid.

Get the entire article here.