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."

New video from Presiding Bishop Michael Curry: Loving, liberating and life-giving

Presiding Bishop and Primate Michael Curry has presented a video on the Jesus Movement: Loving, liberating, and life-giving. The video, and a transcript in English and Spanish, can be found

Seeds of Hope grants: St. Paul's, Newport News

St. Paul's, Newport News, 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.

St. Paul's, Newport News, is a beacon of hope to the needy and the homeless in the downtown area of Newport News. St. Paul's provides hot meals five times a week, coupled with Bible Study on Sunday morning as well as a Seeds of Hope Bible Study/breakfast on Mondays. Three days a week St. Paul's provides a "Safe Place" in the mornings with coffee, a snack, bathroom and laundry facilities to anyone in need. A critical part of that ministry has been to provide a place to do laundry. For those who either wear or carry everything they own in a backpack or plastic bags, St. Paul's provides the only opportunity to clean their clothes-and with it to restore some dignity. A Seeds of Hope Grant in 2015 enabled St. Paul's to purchase a washer, dryer and refrigerator to expand their ministry.
The Episcopal Church is offering grants for Mission Enterprise Zones and for New Church Starts and St. Paul's is exploring expanding these programs through the establishment of a Mission Enterprise Zone (MEZ) in Downtown Newport News. These two innovative Episcopal Church initiatives are funded through the Five Marks of Mission triennial budget, approved by General Convention July 2012/2015.

Learn more about St. Paul's ministries to the downtown community at

Episcopal Relief & Development update

By The Rev. Keith Emerson, Diocesan Coordinator for Episcopal Relief & Development

I want to extend my thanks to the following congregations that made contributions to Episcopal Relief & Development during the 2nd quarter of 2016:
Undesignated Gifts
                    $128.81      St. Stephen's, Newport News
                      $75.00      St. James, Portsmouth
                    $100.00      St. Luke's, Powhatan
                    $461.00      Church of the Holy Apostles, Virginia Beach        
                    $191.03      St. Michael's, Colonial Heights
                      $43.45      Christ and Grace, Petersburg
                    $163.50      Christ Church, Amelia Court House
                 $1,123.00      St. Michael's, Bon Air
                    $100.00      St. Luke's, Powhatan
                    $932.32      St. Andrew's, Newport News
                    $100.00      St. Luke's, Powhatan
                      $50.00      St. Christopher's Episcopal Church Women, Portsmouth
Designated Projects and Disaster Relief
                    $500.00      Bruton Parish, Williamsburg
                    $475.00      St. John's, Hopewell
                    $805.00      St. George's, Newport News
                    $200.00      Church of the Advent, Norfolk
All told, individuals and congregations in our diocese contributed $26,165.18 to Episcopal Relief & Development between April and June. Once again, thank you for your generosity. Working together we are healing a hurting world.

Biblical storytelling workshops Oct. 8 and 15

The Rev. Mark and the Rev Wendy Wilkinson are offering workshops in the basics of biblical storytelling. These workshops will give you a good start on developing the skills to learn and to tell bible stories in a way that brings the scriptures to life. This is also a great workshop for lectors, Godly Play teachers and anyone who enjoys telling stories. There is no fee to attend. 
Mark's workshop will be at St. Aidan's, Virginia Beach, on Saturday, October 8 from 9 to 10:30 a.m. and Wendy will offer a workshop on Saturday, October 15 from 9 to 10:30 a.m. at Good Samaritan, Virginia Beach. To register, email Mark at or Wendy at

Grants from Ridley Foundation and Bruton Parish provide funds for Jackson-Feild renovation

Thanks to the generosity of the Ridley Foundation and Bruton Parish, Williamsburg, the restrooms in Jackson-Feild Behavioral Health Service's gymnasium have been renovated.
The rest rooms have needed to be renovated for some time, but funds were not available for the project. Grants from the Ridley Foundation and the Mission and Outreach Committee at Bruton Parish have made the much needed renovations possible. Work began in late August and was completed in September. New tile was installed on the walls and floors. Commodes were replaced in both rest rooms and a new urinal was installed in the boy's rest room. Existing partitions in both bathrooms were sanded and painted. New LED light fixtures replaced fluorescent fixtures in both bathrooms which will improve lighting and save operating costs.
The children and staff thank the board of the Ridley Foundation and the members of Bruton Parish for their wonderful support to complete these much-needed renovations.

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

14 Seeds of Hope Grants awarded

At its August 25, 2016 meeting, the Executive Board approved 14 diocesan Seeds of Hope Grant awards, totaling $24,625, to 11 parishes or organizations. Funded projects include a nutrition program for senior citizens, "From Guns to Art" project, youth mentoring, Laundry Love project, and a community garden.
Seeds of Hope grants support the development or expansion of social justice ministries sponsored by diocesan congregations and organizations. Seeds of Hope grants were the heart of our diocese's Second Century "Feed My Sheep" campaign conducted fourteen years ago. Funds from this campaign produce income that is available on an annual basis for social justice ministries proposed by parishes, diocesan departments and commissions.

Over the next few weeks, the Diocesan eNews will feature stories of ministry funded by 2015 diocesan Seeds of Hope Grants. 
2016 awards were made to:
St. Andrew's, Norfolk
Good Samaritan, Virginia Beach
GraceInside Prison Chaplaincy
St. Andrew's and Grace, Norfolk
St. James, Warfield
St. Paul's, Lawrenceville
St. Paul's, Newport News
St. Thomas, Freeman
Holy Apostles, Virginia Beach
Mission of the Holy Spirit, Norfolk

CE-Net meeting Oct. 6

Join CENet for an informal morning of coffee and conversation on Thursday, October 6, 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. at the Diocesan Office in Newport News. We would love to talk about how your program year has been going and are what you are trying for the first time. Please post to the Formation in Southern VA Facebook group any other things you would like to talk about or would like more information about.

Clergy Continuing Education Grant applications due Oct. 1

Clergy are reminded that applications for Clergy Continuing Education Grants are due in the Diocesan Office by October 1. Further information, including the application and evaluation forms, can be found here.

Fall issue of The Grapevine newsletter is here

Click here for the Fall 2016 issue of The Grapevine, a quarterly newsletter of the Diocesan ECW distributed via email. If you have news you would like included in The Grapevine, or know of someone who would like to be added to email list, please contact Nancy Smith, ECW Diocesan Communication Chair, at The deadline for the Winter 2016 issue in October 31, 2106. 

Acolyte Festival at Washington National Cathedral

Join acolytes from across the United States on Saturday, October 8, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., for a morning service of re-dedication and Holy Eucharist. Bring your processional crosses, banners, torches, thuribles, flags, and streamers for a festive procession of acolytes, clergy, and vergers. Workshops in the afternoon offer enrichment and instruction. Cost is $20 per acolyte and registration is required. Fee applies only to acolytes. Clergy, vergers, friends and family are welcome to attend at no charge and the service is open to the public. Go to for complete information and registration. Registration deadline is Sept. 25!

Chanco seeking new members for the Board of Directors

Each year, a class of board members rotates off and a new class begins. Our new class will begin February 2017 and we are seeking applications now. The Chanco board meets monthly or bi-monthly on the first Tuesday of the month at 4 pm at Chanco. These volunteers are responsible for the oversight and strategic planning for Chanco's future.  If you have a passion for Chanco's ministry, this could be for you! Members must be in good standing in an Episcopal Church in our diocese. Click here for a board member application.  Questions? Contact Executive Director Gareth Kalfas at or at 888-7CHANCO (888-724-2626). Thank you for your prayerful consideration of this important service to Chanco.

Applications accepted for UTO young adult, seminarian grants for 2017

Applications are now being accepted for the 2017 United Thank Offering grants: 10 grans of $2500 for young adults (ages 19-30); and 10 grans of $2500 to seminarians (no age limit). The focus of the grants is Evangelism and Reconciliation.

UTO is a ministry to promote thankfulness and mission in the whole Church. Known worldwide as UTO, the United Thank Offering awards grants for projects that address human needs and help alleviate poverty, both domestically and internationally in the Episcopal Church.

Complete guidelines are here.

Friday, September 9, 2016

Meet Diocesan Disaster Coordinator Carter Sinclair

What would your parish do in the event of an emergency? How could your parish help those in need in the event of an emergency? Do you know who are the most vulnerable of your parishioners in the event of an emergency? Episcopal Relief and Development (ERD) is a resource for our diocese and parishes in the event of an emergency. It is the goal of ERD to appoint a Disaster Coordinator in each diocese.
I am Carter Sinclair, the newly appointed Diocesan Disaster Coordinator for Southern Virginia. I am a member of Eastern Shore Chapel, Virginia Beach, and a Postulant for the Vocational Diaconate. By profession I am a structural engineer and also a structural specialist with Virginia Task Force 2, an Urban Search and Rescue Team with FEMA.

I will be contacting parishes throughout the diocese, introducing myself, and will also be present at Annual Council in February 2017. I want to help Southern Virginia be as prepared as possible when emergencies occur. Helping parishes to appoint and equip their own disaster coordinator and encouraging members to enroll in ERD's volunteer and skill database, Ready to Serve, are some of the ways I hope to achieve that goal.
Please contact me if you have any questions or concerns, (work), (home), 757-417-0565 ext. 11 (work), 757-376-8984 (cell).
Thank you,
Carter Sinclair

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

YASC missionary from Southern Virginia to serve in Hong Kong

Adrienne Davis and her mom, Sue Davis, Director of Child & Youth Formation at St. David's.
Twenty young adults representing 18 Episcopal Church dioceses are serving as missionaries in the Young Adult Service Corps (YASC) for the 2016-2017 term in locales throughout the Anglican Communion. Among them is Adrienne Davis from St. David's, Chesterfield. Adrienne will be serving with Helpers for Domestic Helpers (HDH) at St. John's Cathedral in the Diocese of Hong Kong Island.

"HDH does lovely work in advocacy for the population of foreign domestic workers in Hong Kong. In large part these women migrated from the Philippines and Indonesia to work in peoples houses doing things like cleaning, childcare, and elder care," said Adrienne in a recent blog post. "For numerous reasons these women are often abused by their employers, when this happens we provide a variety of services including but not limited to education of legal rights, support on criminal and civil court cases, and liaising with relevant government agencies."
YASC is a ministry of the Episcopal Church for young adults, ages 21 - 30, who are interested in exploring their faith in new ways by living and serving in communities around the Anglican Communion.

Please keep Adrienne, her mission and her family in your prayers. You can follow her experiences on her blog here

Communicators & Administrators/Secretaries lunch group to meet Sept. 22

The Communicators & Administrators/Secretaries Lunch Group will hold its first meeting on Thursday, September 22, 12 to 1:30 pm at the Diocesan Center in Newport News. Extend an invitation to anyone you think would like to participate. Bring your own lunch, beverages will be provided. There's no agenda, just come with your questions, resources you'd like to share, or just come to get to know your colleagues in Southern VA. If you plan to attend, RSVP to Ann Turner,

News from Episcopal Church Women

Fall Annual Meeting, Oct. 15 in Norfolk
All Episcopal Church Women are invited to the ECW Fall Annual Meeting Saturday, October 15, at Grace Church, Norfolk. Nancy Polick Sands, ECW diocesan president, featured speaker at the meeting, will talk about ECW current state of ECW. New board members will be elected and installed. 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. 

ECW 2015 Outreach Totals Over $21,000
"Many thanks to your contributions, ECW outreach totaled over $21,000 in 2015," said Nancy Sands, ECW Diocesan President. The ECW gave over $3,400 to eight organizations in the diocese, nation and the world through the Diocesan Budget funded by dues; and $9,875 in Elise Holladay Scholarships, funded by the Flora A Penick Fund, to 13 high school graduates in the diocese, $4,200 to Congo and Malawi (see thank you note in the adjacent column) scholarships from the Bishop Tucker Fund; and $2,195.02 to the Church Periodical Club funded by your voluntary contributions.
"We also gave $1,600 in graduation gifts to Jackson-Feild Homes and Boys Home of Virginia graduates through my president's 2015 outreach project "God Bless the Children," not to mention all your wonderful wish list contributions to both homes," Nancy said. "I am really thankful for you everything you are doing in your churches to help others."