Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Bishop Hollerith will install new ECW Board members at Oct. 15 meeting

All Episcopal Church Women are invited to the ECW Fall Annual Meeting Saturday, October 15, 9:30 a.m., at Grace, Norfolk.  Bishop Hollerith will install new board members elected at the meeting. Nancy Polick Sands, ECW diocesan president, featured speaker at the meeting, will talk about the current state of the ECW. Contact Louise Boss, corresponding secretary, to register for the meeting at 757-678-5331 or  by October 1. The registration fee of $20 includes lunch. 

Bishop Hollerith celebrates Pilgrims Mass

L to R, clockwise: The Rev. Keith Emerson (St. Paul's, Suffolk) and the Rev. Dale Custer (St. John's, Chester); the pilgrims; Bishop Hollerith at the opening of the service.

Bishop Hollerith celebrated a Pilgrims Mass last night, Sept. 27, at St. Michael's, Bon Air, for  a group of twenty pilgrims embarking next week on El Camino de Santiago de Compostela Ingles (The English Way of the Way of St. James).

Monday, September 26, 2016

Seeds of Hope grants: St. Thomas, Freeman

St. Thomas, Freeman, was the recipient of a diocesan Seeds of Hope Grant for 2015. Seeds of Hope grants support the development or expansion of social justice ministries in Southern Virginia.
Senior Pals program at St. Thomas, Freeman.

Diocesan Seeds of Hope Grants to St. Thomas, Freeman, in 2015 funded a Youth Empowerment program, Senior Pals Project and a Women's Conference.
The Youth Empowerment program provides mentoring, tutoring and cultural events for the young people of their community, as well as educational programs for their parents. This year included a "Saddle Up for Success" program - a Saturday event attended by 30 elementary and high school students with 20 adult volunteers.
"The beautiful part of Saddle Up for Success program was that St. Paul's Memorial Chapel, Lawrenceville, partnered with us," reported Iris Jones, St. Thomas' Senior Warden. "Their donations, expertise and fellowship made this the most special activity of the year."
The western-themed day included educational activities, career planning, preparing for college, importance of voting, as well as games, arts and crafts.
The Senior Pals program assists senior citizens in the community with computer training, financial literacy and social activities. This year's activities included learning to crochet blankets for those who are homeless using strips cut from grocery bags and a Paint Party. "Senior Pals workshops were a blast this year," said one participant. "I was so excited to get up on Tuesday mornings and go to St. Thomas and fellowship with different people." The Women's Conference included a Zumba class that was such a hit that regular classes are offered to the Senior Pals.

Ridley Foundation awards scholarships to 49 students

The Ridley Foundation Board awarded scholarships totaling $151,272 to 49 students from the Diocese of Southern Virginia and Southampton County for the 2016-2017 academic year. The Board also awarded grants of $10,000 each to Mission of the Holy Spirit and Boys Home of Virginia. Click here for a list of scholarship recipients.

Churches participate in MissionWorks at Boys Home

Boys Home was blessed to host four Mission Works groups this summer from all over Virginia, including Trinity, Portsmouth, and Galilee, Virginia Beach. All of the groups worked hard, but made sure to have fun activities planned with the boys as well.
Trinity arrived several days after a flood and worked to move all the molding hay out of the barn and began the process of recovery for equine equipment, supplies and other items stored at the barn. They helped with administrative works as well, made s'mores with the boys and led chapel.
Galilee held a sports camp for the boys and planned activities throughout the week. They worked hard to make sure the camp was fun for the boys and spent a lot of time getting to know the boys while they were there.
Boys Home is thankful to all of the mission groups who spent time on campus this summer. It means so much to the staff and boys. To learn more about Boys Home and how you can support their ministry, go to

An Extraordinary Member of the Jackson-Feild Team Retires

After nineteen years of loyal and dedicated service to Jackson-Feild, Ann Chaffins is retiring on September 30. Ann gave her heart and soul to our mission, and it's virtually impossible to accurately and effectively convey just how important she's been to our organization.
In her role as Assistant Vice President of Advancement at Jackson-Feild, Ann went above and beyond the call of duty every day, in everything she did. Whether reaching out to donors, attending convocations, speaking to church groups, or training interns and new employees in the Richmond office, Ann put people at ease and let them know how important they are and how much she - and Jackson-Feild - appreciated them. She worked tirelessly to ensure that the development operations met expectations and fulfilled its goals.
Bill Northen, former member of the Board of Trustees said, "Ann has been a great friend and mentor. She's been the voice of calm reason for as long as I can remember, and her determination and professionalism have been something I have tried to emulate. I'm proud to call her a friend, and I wish her every continued success in her next endeavors."
Ann tells us that while she will miss the relationships she's established with donors and co-workers, she's looking forward to traveling and spending more time with her husband Dave, her children Katherine and Winston and their spouses, and her four grandchildren.

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

House of Bishops issues a Word to the Church for the World

The House of Bishops, meeting in Detroit, MI has issued the following A Word to the Church for the World. Video is available in English and Spanish here. Text in Spanish is here.

"Greetings from Detroit, a city determined to be revived.  Greetings also from the city of Flint, where we are reminded that the gift of water has for many of our brothers and sisters become contaminated.
Here we have been exhorted to set our sights beyond ourselves and to minister to the several nations where we serve and the wider world.

We lament the stark joylessness that marks our present time.  We decry angry political rhetoric which rages while fissures widen within society along racial, economic, educational, religious, cultural and generational lines.  We refuse to look away as poverty, cruelty and war force families to become migrants enduring statelessness and demonization.  We renounce the gun violence and drug addiction that steal lives and crush souls while others succumb to fear and cynicism, abandoning any sense of neighborliness.

Yet, in all this, "we do not despair" (2 Cor. 4:8.). We remember that God in Christ entered our earthly neighborhood during a time of political volatility and economic inequality.  To this current crisis we bring our faith in Jesus.  By God's grace, we choose to see in this moment an urgent opportunity to follow Jesus into our fractured neighborhoods, the nation and the world.

Every member of the church has been "called for a time such as this." (Esther 4:14) Let prophets tell the truth in love.  Let reconcilers move boldly into places of division and disagreement. Let evangelists inspire us to tell the story of Jesus in new and compelling ways.  Let leaders lead with courage and joy.

In the hope of the Resurrection let us all pray for God to work through our struggle and confusion to accomplish God's purposes on earth."