Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Bishop Hollerith at Washington National Cathedral

L to R:  Rev. Canon Stephanie Spellers; Rev. Dr. Rosemarie Duncan; Rt. Rev. Mariann Budde; Rev. Canon Kelly Brown Douglas; Bishop Hollerith; Presiding Bishop Michael Curry; Rev. Canon Jan Naylor Cope; Very Rev. Randolph Hollerith

Bishop Hollerith was at the National Cathedral on Sunday, Oct. 23 - preaching at the morning service and participating in the installation of his brother, the Very Rev. Randolph M. Hollerith, as 11th Dean of the Cathedral. You can watch video of both services on the cathedral website,  www.cathedral.org

125th Annual Council Feb. 10-11 in Williamsburg

The 125th Annual Council of the Episcopal Diocese of Southern Virginia will be held February 10-11, 2017 at the Williamsburg Lodge Convention Center. Bookmark this page, www.bit.ly/diosova125, where you can find the most current information about the 125th Annual Council, including: Nomination form for elections; Youth Delegation application; Communicator Credentials application; and hotel information. Council hashtag is #diosova125.

Stewardship: It's not about money... It's about relationships
Our keynote speaker will be the Rev. Canon Timothy Dombek, Canon for Stewardship in the Diocese of Arizona. Dombek will give three presentations at Council: Building Relationships = Increased Giving; How to Talk About Money & Pledges; and The Most Overlooked Aspect of Congregational Stewardship.

Registration will begin Nov. 28
Council registration will open on Monday, Nov. 28. You will be able to register individually or you may register your entire delegation. Attendees will need to make their own hotel reservations. Discounted rates will be available at the Williamsburg Lodge and The Woodlands. 
Volunteer Choir
In celebration of our 125th annual Diocesan Council, the opening worship service on Friday, February 10 at 11 a.m. will include a brass quintet and volunteer singers from around our Diocese. Rebecca Davy, Music Director and Organist at Bruton Parish, Williamsburg, will direct the volunteer choir and is looking for singers to participate in this special service.  If you would be interested in singing, contact her at bdavy@brutonparish.org or 757-645-3431.

Dismantling Racism workshop Nov. 5

Virginia Organizing will offer a Dismantling Racism workshop on Saturday, Nov. 5, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Trinity, Portsmouth (500 Court Street). During this workshop, people of different racial and ethnic backgrounds will have the opportunity to reflect on personal experiences, discuss issues, explore theories in anti-racism work, and focus on how to make changes within their organizations and communities. This is an opportunity to talk in an open, diverse, and safe setting about racism and to develop action plans to take home. Click here for more info and registration. Please register by Nov. 3.  

2015 Parish Audits due now

2015 parish audits were due September 1.  We have received 34. If you have not turned in your church's audit, please contact Kellie Riley at the diocesan office, kriley@diosova.org, to let her know the status of the audit.

If you need information about how to conduct an audit, you can go to the diocesan website, www.diosova.org, or contact Nancy James, njames@diosova.org or 213-3386, or Kellie Riley, kriley@diosova.org or 213-3374.

Help ECW fund outreach - submit dues by Nov. 1

Each fall the ECW Diocesan Board asks Episcopal Church Women diocese-wide to help fund outreach in the diocese, nation and world. Each parish is requested to contribute annual dues of $3 per person. Two of those dollars ($2) fund the ECW Diocesan Budget on page 33 in the Yearbook and Directory. At year end, recipients world-wide receive donations allotted by percentages based on the amount of money received. The remaining dollar ($1) helps fund the administrative fund.
The board also asks for voluntary contributions to help fund the Church Periodical Club and Miles of Pennies; the Elise Holladay Scholarships for high school graduates to further their education; the Book of Remembrance-gifts in memory of loved ones also fund the Elise Holladay Scholarships; God Bless the Children, Jackson-Feild Homes and Boys Home graduation gifts; and With These Hands, Holy Cross Anglican School, Belize Feeding Program.
All contributions are due November 1. Please mail one check payable to: ECW Treasurer with the Parish Annual Contribution Report to Betty Mariner, ECW Diocesan Treasurer.
Who's Who is ECW?
We need your help to keep contact information up-to-date in the ECW Yearbook and Directory. We also want to honor our sisters in memoriam. Please complete and mail the ECW Parish Information Report, due November 1, and the ECW Convocation Report 2016, due November 15, to Louise Boss, Second Vice President. You can find all the forms in the 2016 ECW Yearbook and Directory. For a copy, email or call Ann Turner, Diocesan Communication Officer, aturner@diosova.org, 757-213-3388.

Connect with Evangelism Matters conference through FREE live webcast and on-demand

Congregations, dioceses, groups, and individuals can connect with Evangelism Matters without traveling to Texas for the groundbreaking event. Evangelism Matters, an Episcopal Church Evangelism Conference on November 18-19 in Dallas, TX, is designed for anyone who would like to learn more about evangelism and available resources to share our faith. The churchwide event is co-sponsored by Forward Movement and the Presiding Bishop's Office, and is hosted by the Diocese of Dallas and Church of the Transfiguration, Dallas, TX where the activities will be held.

Key portions of Evangelism Matters will be live webcast to allow for individual and group viewing during conventions, discussion groups, and local evangelism gatherings. The webcast is free and does not require registration. Get more information on how you can access the conference here.

Church Leadership Conference Feb. 17-19 at Kanuga

The  Church Leadership Conference, sponsored by Kanuga and the Episcopal Church Foundation, will be held at Kanuga February 17-19, 2017 and will explore the theme "Finding Your Place."  Join Rachel Held Evans, Canon Frank Logue, and a team of presenters as they discuss leadership skills that will enable churches to thrive.  For more information and to register, please visit www.kanuga.org/churchleadership.

Monday, October 17, 2016

Two new online courses from ChurchNext

ChurchNext has launched two brand new courses, suitable for individual or group study:
  • Practical Forgiveness - Forgiveness continues to be one of the greatest issues facing humankind. Class led by Rob Voyle. Click here to learn more.
  • A 7 Week Advent - With Advent approaching, there's a small but hearty movement to expand the season from four weeks to seven. Episcopal rector Stephen Smith leads this course. Click here to learn more.
ChurchNext offers you the opportunity to learn from expert teachers in Scripture, liturgy, and important Christian topics. Students can interact in a safe, online environment that's convenient, engaging, and affordable.

MissionInsite demographics: Ministry benefits of PeoplePlot

Who are we? It's an important ministry question for churches. the MissionInsite demographics tools - available to all churches in Southern Virginia - includes PeoplePlot. With this tool you can:
  • connect with visitors and new movers
  • discover the financial support potential of your church
  • view your people by neighborhood
  • discover small group opportunities
  • respond to natural disasters in your area
  • and much more
Click here to learn more about MissionInsite and PeoplePlot. Questions? Contact the Rev. Jeunee Godsey, jgodsey@diosova.org.

Thomas W. Meehan elected to Jackson-Feild Home's Foundation Board

Thomas W. Meehan, Sr. president and broker with CD West & Company in Newport News has been elected to the Board of Trustees of Jackson-Feild Homes Foundation.
Mr. Meehan, a native of Newport News, began his career in real estate in 1970 with C. D. West & Co. and is now the sole owner and president. The company provides oversight of apartment projects in Virginia and Georgia, and has developed 1,000+ residential lots in Virginia and South Carolina and built 300+ single family homes. Earlier in his career, Meehan was a real estate appraiser and has appraised more than 3,000 houses and over 75 commercial properties.
Mr. Meehan serves on the boards of the Hampton Roads Academy, Achievable Dream, and Boys & Girls Club of the Virginia Peninsula. He is a past director of the Chesapeake Bay Bridge and Tunnel Commission and the American Cancer Society in Hampton Roads.

Church asked to observe National Disability Employment Awareness Month

In honor of National Disability Employment Awareness Month, observed throughout October, Presiding Bishop Michael Curry has asked all Episcopalians to remember and honor the invaluable contributions of disabled lay and clergy who have served, and currently serve, within the Episcopal Church.

The 78th General Convention in 2015 renewed and reaffirmed the Episcopal Church's commitment to the inclusion and protection of the civil rights of all persons with disabilities through the passage of Resolution D034: Support the Civil Rights of Disabled Persons. National Disability Employment Awareness Month presents all dioceses and congregations with the opportunity to fully implement Resolution D034 through seeking education from community deaf/hard of hearing and disability organizations on supporting full inclusion of disabled persons in all aspects of public life.

"Renewed commitment calls for renewed action," Presiding Bishop Curry said.  "This October, let us walk together in the footsteps of Jesus Christ to transform the unjust structures of society and more fully welcome our disabled brothers and sisters living within our congregations and our communities."
For ideas and resources to observe National Disability Employment Awareness Month contact Jayce Hafner, Episcopal Church Domestic Policy Analyst, jhafner@episcopalchurch.org.

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

November Weekend registration is open!

November weekend is Nov. 18-20 at Chanco on the James. Make new friends at this annual retreat for teens, open to grades 6-12. November Weekend includes great music, fun games and activities, a Friday night social and a Saturday night dance, meaningful group discussions, and amazing worship. Click here for details and easy online registration.

Seminar: Spiritual Wholeness in a Sexually Broken World

Did you know that 2.5 billion pornographic emails are sent every day?
The Addictions and Recovery Commission invites you to a half-day seminar, "Spiritual Wholeness in a Sexually Broken World" with T. C. Ryan on Wednesday, Nov. 3, 1:00 to 4:00 p.m. at the Woodlands Hotel, Williamsburg. The seminar is free and open to the public.
The purpose of this seminar is to help us think about how we see our sexuality, to understand sexual brokenness and to consider strategic ways by which we can help ourselves, each other and the Church become healthier in handling human sexuality and growing as spiritual, healthy people.
For nearly twenty years T. C. Ryan was founding and senior pastor of a large church. He resigned in order to concentrate more fully on his ongoing recovery from a lifelong sexual addiction. Dr. Ryan now has a ministry of spiritual direction with individuals and groups, preaches, writes and leads seminars on achieving spiritual wholeness in a sexually broken world.
This seminar will be the first presentation of Recovery Ministry of the Episcopal Church's annual Gathering. To register for the full conference, click here. For more information call 757-903-0000.

Resources to help parishes plan Day of Repentance and Reconciliation

Annual Council Resolution R-1 (2013) resolved that "November 2, 2014, All Souls Day, will be designated as the 'Day of Repentance and Reconciliation' in the Diocese of Southern Virginia and parishes will annually hold this observance during the octave of All Saints."

Please take plans to live into R-1 and plan a meaningful service during the octave of All Saints. In the diocesan service we used a story format.  
"Repentance, Reconciliation and Healing: A liturgical resource for congregations" follows the format of Holy Women, Holy Men. This booklet offers several options for readings and psalms.  

Union of Black Episcopalians to meet Oct. 13

The James Solomon Russell chapter of the Union of Black Episcopalians (UBE) will meet  on Thursday, Oct. 13 at 10:30 a.m. at Grace, Norfolk (1400 E. Brambleton Ave., Norfolk).

The Union of Black Episcopalians (UBE) invites ALL Episcopalians, regardless of race, to become members of UBE and join them in their mission of fighting racism and encouraging the involvement of Black people in the total life of the church.

The James Solomon Russell chapter of the UBE meets on the second Thursday of each month at 10:30 a.m. at Grace, Norfolk. All Episcopalians in the Diocese of Southern Virginia are invited and encouraged to join the UBE and become members of this diverse and concerned group. Annual dues are $70 for individuals, $60 for retired, and $105 four couples. For more information contact David Flores, drf71137@gmail.com.

Episcopal Relief & Development assisting with Hurricane Matthew recovery

Devastation in Haiti from Hurricane Matthew.
Episcopal Relief & Development urges prayers for communities in the Caribbean and along the US East Coast that are dealing with the impact of Hurricane Matthew.
"Due to the power outages and communications challenges in the aftermath of Hurricane Matthew, information about the scale of the storm's impact is coming in slowly," said Abagail Nelson, Episcopal Relief & Development's Senior Vice President for Programs. "From what we are seeing so far, the damage is extensive in a number of areas and it will take a long time, even years, for many of these places to recover."
Episcopal Church-affiliated organizations and networks in Haiti and Cuba continue to assess damage and respond to emergency needs. In Haiti, Episcopal Relief & Development support will enable local partners such as the Bishop Tharp Institute (BTI) to provide food and water to displaced people sheltering on the school's campus. BTI is located in Les Cayes, one of the most hard-hit areas of Haiti's southern peninsula. As of October 9, more than 1.4 million people are in need of humanitarian assistance and over 61,000 people are in temporary shelters, according to UN OCHA. The Haitian Directorate for Civil Protection has confirmed 336 fatalities as of October 8, though other sources place the death toll upwards of 1,000.
In the United States, the slow-moving storm grazed the Florida coast and had a large impact further north into the Carolinas. Episcopal Relief & Development is in contact with dioceses along the southern Atlantic coast, providing technical assistance to local leaders who are reaching out in their communities. After several days of heavy rain, flood levels continue to rise in areas of South Carolina and eastern North Carolina, stranding large numbers of people and prompting evacuations. Church partners are monitoring the situation locally and communicating as able regarding property damage and community members with emergency needs.
Please continue to pray for communities affected by Hurricane Matthew, for first responders who are rescuing and caring for people in need and for the families and friends of those who lost their lives.
Donations to the Hurricane Matthew Response Fund will help Episcopal Relief & Development provide critical assistance to communities in need.

Monday, October 3, 2016

Seeds of Hope grants: Laundry Love

Diocesan Seeds of Hope grants support the development or expansion of social justice ministries in Southern Virginia.

In 2015, a Seeds of Hope Grant was awarded to Laundry Love, a partnership between St. Andrew's, St. Paul's, Mission of the Holy Spirit, Unitarian Universalist Church of Norfolk. Laundry Love empowers those struggling financially. It pays for laundry, so money saved can be used for groceries, gas, school supplies, etc. However, Laundry Love is only a bridge to our neighbors. Clean clothes come second to the relationships being built.
The first Laundry Love event was held in January 2016 and held monthly since then. In the beginning, flyers were distributed around the neighborhood and through local charities. By March, the laundromat was packed and flyers were no longer necessary. They rely on word of mouth and post events on a Laundry Love Facebook page. This program has become a wonderful example of grace - they do not try to determine if people really need free laundry. "We have no idea what people are going through. We ask everyone who enters if we can pay for their laundry," report project organizers.
In addition to the Seeds of Hope Grant, funding for this ministry comes from St. Andrew's, who matched the grant and then doubled their match. St. Paul's matched St. Andrew's contribution. Other funding comes from private donations. At each event, people regularly contribute to a donation jar (an empty detergent bottle) so much that it covers the dry cycles.
A community is emerging from meeting every third Thursday of the month to do laundry. It's more than dirty laundry that brings people to Laundry Love. They come from many situations - low income, homeless. Others are experiencing the challenge of a washer breaking down or have recently moved. Linette was yelling at God when she went to another laundromat and her laundry got stuck in a malfunctioning washer. There was no attendant, just a phone number she called multiple times trying to get help. She waited several hours for a refund, but no one came. She happened into a Laundry Love event and was floored when her laundry was paid for - she had lost so much money at the other laundromat that she worried she'd have to spend grocery money to get her clothes clean.

Mark your calendar for lunch groups

Treasurers & Administrators Lunch Group

October 20, 12 to 1:30 p.m. at Christ & St Luke's, Norfolk
This is a wonderful opportunity to meet with other parish administrators and treasurers to talk about common issues. Bring your own lunch; beverages will be provided. There's no agenda for this gathering - just an opportunity to get together, share, encourage, support, and ask questions. Please RSVP to Nancy James, njames@diosova.org or 757-213-3386.

Communicators & Secretaries Lunch Group

November 2, 12 to 1:30 p.m. at St. Aidan's, Virginia Beach
Join church communications volunteers and staff and parish secretaries for this casual colleague group. Bring your own lunch; beverages will be provided. There's no agenda for this gathering - bring your questions, or ideas or resources to share, or just come to enjoy the support of your colleagues from across the diocese. RSVP to Ann Turner, aturner@diosova.org or 757-213-3388.

"A Lifting of Voices" to benefit Boys Home

You are cordially invited to "A Lifting of Voices", the first annual celebration of uplifting a cappella music to benefit Boys Home of Virginia. The concert will be held on Sunday, October 30 at 3 p.m. in the Robins Theater at the Steward School in Richmond.
The concert includes five of the Richmond area's finest a cappella groups - Soundworks, Uncommon, Beaux Ties, The Virginia Girls and Boys Choirs, and Main Street Station - performing songs from across the musical spectrum. Each group will perform individually followed by an inspiring finale in which all groups will come together into one ensemble.
There are a limited number of reserved seats available for a minimum donation, as well as additional open seating. For more info and to reserve your seats,  go to www.LiftingOfVoices.org.

Presiding Bishop to address value of Historically Black Colleges & Universities

The Office of Black Ministries of the Episcopal Church is sponsoring a public recognition event in Washington, DC on Thursday, November 10 for its affiliated Historically Black Colleges and Universities of St. Augustine's University, Raleigh, NC and Voorhees College, Denmark, SC. 

Music will kick off the day at 9 a.m. on November 10 at St. John's Church, Lafayette, Square, Washington DC with musical renditions  presented by the combined choirs of St. Augustine's and Voorhees. Presiding Bishop Michael B. Curry will present the keynote address, followed by a question/answer session. In the afternoon, panel discussions will be led by the university presidents and students as they share their experiences.
For more information contact Ifill at aifill@episcopalchurch.org, (646) 323-0130 or Angeline Cabanban at acabanban@episcopalchurch.org  or (212) 716-6186.