Wednesday, February 27, 2019

Join us for a Women's Lenten Retreat

Join us at Chanco on the James April 12-13 for a Women's Lenten Retreat. This event is open to all women ages 18 and up. Reconnect with old friends and meet new ones as women from all over our Diocese connect to sing, worship, pray, discuss and reflect together. Register at Questions? Contact us at or at 888-7CHANCO (888-724-2626). 

Bishop's Blog: Thoughts upon congregational development

Congregational development and recasting are among Bishop Magness' highest priorities. He and the Canons have been on the road in Southern Virginia, talking with congregations about these very issues. In his latest blog post, the Bishop shares his thoughts with you.

Monday, February 25, 2019

Lenten Resources available from The Episcopal Church

The journey through Lent into Easter is a journey with Jesus. We are baptized into his life, self-giving and death; then we rise in hope to life transformed. This Lent, faith communities are invited to walk with Jesus in his Way of Love and into the experience of transformed life. Click here for Lenten resources, in both English and Spanish, for the Way of Love, and from Episcopal Relief & Development, Living Compass, United Thank Offering and many others.   

Jackson-Feild Behavioral Health Services meets Medicaid's new standards

For a number of years, Jackson-Feild Behavioral Health Services (JFBHS) has been a Medicaid provider. Medicaid recently initiated stringent standards of care, and JFBHS is pleased to announce that they passed - with flying colors - an unannounced three-day observation and assessment by a Medicaid representative.
This achievement is a testament to JFBHS' mission to provide high quality evidence-based psychiatric, residential, educational and recovery treatment services for children who suffer from severe emotional trauma, mental illness and/or addiction.  Their goal is to restore wellness and provide support for successful reintegration into homes, families and communities.
Medicaid is a government-sponsored insurance program for persons of all ages whose income and resources are insufficient to pay for health care including mental health.
Medicaid raised the bar for psychiatric residential facilities, and JFBHS cleared the bar simply by doing what they already were doing: providing high quality, effective services. Medicaid will continue to make unannounced site visits, and JFBHS is confident that they will continue to meet the challenge and exceed the expectations.

Partners in Welcome: An innovative new program from Episcopal Migration Ministries

Episcopal Migration Ministries, the refugee resettlement ministry of The Episcopal Church, is proud to announce an innovative new program called Partners in Welcome (PiW). Through this program, Episcopal Migration Ministries is building a mission-driven community rooted in loving God and our shared value to love our neighbor. This network is open to all organizations and individuals dedicated to welcoming newcomers, educating communities, and developing advocates. The PiW online portal will officially launch on Feb. 28, offering network members the opportunity to access resources, exchange ideas, and connect with others involved in refugee and immigrant welcome. The Partners in Welcome program is made possible by a generous grant from the United Thank Offering. Click here for more information on PiW

Tuesday, February 19, 2019

Bishop Magness is blogging!

Bishop Magness is blogging, and he kicks off his brand-new blog with a reflection on Southern Virginia's 127th Annual Council. You can find him at In addition to sharing occasional reflections on a variety of topics, Bishop Magness will also be posting sermons from his visitations.
In addition to his blog, you can also follow Bishop Magness on Twitter, @DioSoVaBishop.

Chuck Marks elected Diocesan Treasurer

The Executive Board has elected Mr. Charles Marks III as diocesan treasurer. He fills the position vacated by the retirement of Mr. John Meek, who served as diocesan treasurer for eight years. 
A decorated, 30-year veteran of the U.S. Navy, Chuck Marks served as a Surface Warfare Officer, a fiscal policy advisor, a strategic planner, a Middle East, NATO and United Nations specialist. During his last five years in the Navy, he was the subject matter specialist on building inclusive cultures to help counter destructive behaviors such as sexual assault, suicide, domestic violence, substance abuse, and gun violence. He has held multiple commands both ashore and afloat, and has served overseas in Europe, the Middle East, and Afghanistan.
Presently, Chuck has formed his own company helping others to develop inclusive cultures, to understand their own employees better, to build climates where all are invested in the future of the organization, and to ensure that strategic planning incorporates the best of military and civilian leadership lessons.
Active in his church community, Chuck is presently serving on his vestry as Senior Warden and is the high school leader for the Episcopal Youth Community. He also serves as a member of the Chanco on the James Board of Directors and was appointed one of two sub-committee leads for the Diocesan Youth Ministry Task Force.

The Executive Board extends its grateful thanks to the Rev. Anne Kirchmier, chair of the diocesan Program, Budget & Review Committee who has served as interim treasurer since Johh Meek's retirement in October 2018.

Clergy transitions

The Rev. Carlotta Cochran began as priest-in-charge at St. Stephen's, Norfolk, January 1, 2019.
The Rev. Berkley Ford will retire as rector of Holy Trinity, Onancock, March 1, 2019.

Presiding Bishop calls for Good Friday Offering to support ministry in Jerusalem & the Middle East

"The Good Friday Offering of our Church is one way to help connect the love of Christ on the cross with our support of the ongoing ministry of love and compassion carried out by our Anglican sisters and brothers throughout the Province of Jerusalem and the Middle East," Presiding Bishop and Primate Michael Curry wrote to the bishops and clergy of The Episcopal Church. "Whether funding a hospital in Gaza or the West Bank, or an eye clinic in Aden, or women's programs, or summer camps and leadership training for young people, the Good Friday Offering is making a difference in the lives of so many."

In his Good Friday letter, Presiding Bishop Curry asks each Bishop and congregation to consider providing assistance for the Province of Jerusalem and the Middle East.

"I believe our partnership with those who keep the faith of Jesus alive in the region, where our Lord walked and began his movement, is a significant aspect of our work as part of the church catholic," he wrote.

Information, including bulletin covers and bulletin inserts on the Good Friday Offering, is available here

No Longer Strangers: Free, new resource for exploring immigration issues

Forward Movement invites individuals and congregations to explore the difficult but important issues of migration and immigration in a new, free resource, No Longer Strangers: Exploring Immigration Issues. The downloadable booklet encourages discussion of migration and immigration through the lens of scripture and shared Christian values, presents opposing viewpoints, and invites people to talk about the issues with civility and respect. The booklet includes biblical references on hospitality, examples of migrations as they appear in the scriptures, and thought-provoking questions that can be used for both personal study and group discussion.

Wednesday, February 13, 2019

127th Annual Council focuses on change

The 127th Annual Council met February 8-9 at the Williamsburg Lodge. Much of the work of this year's Council related to the search for a new bishop for Southern Virginia, and keynote speakers focused on changing ways of doing church.  
Bishop Magness with keynoters Bobbe Fitzhugh and Gannon Sims
Council affirmed the Standing Committee's call of Bishop Jay Magness as Bishop Diocesan Pro Tempore, to serve until the consecration of a new bishop. Bishop Magness addressed Council and preached at the Council Eucharist. In his address, Bishop Magness shared many things for which Southern Virginia can be joyous and thankful. But he spoke of change, both here in Southern Virginia and the wider Church. While the message of Christ's redeeming love stays the same, everything else is changing. You can read the Bishop's address here and his sermon here.   
Keynote speakers at this year's Council were Gannon Sims and the Rev. Bobbe Fitzhugh of Fresh Expressions. Sims' presentation, "A Future for the Church", and Fitzhugh's "From Maintenance to Mission: Taking the Church Back to What Jesus Started" focused on ways for congregations to reach those who are not comfortable with or interested in traditional ways of doing church. Lively table discussion followed each presentation and there was excitement about the many possible "fresh expressions" in our congregations. Resources recommended by our keynote speakers included: From Steeple to Street by Travis Collins; Fresh Expressions of Church by Travis Collins; Dinner Church by Verlon Foster; Seven Practices of Church by David Fitch; and Canoeing the Mountains by Tod Bolsinger.     
Bishop Hollerith was honored by Council
The Nominating/Search and Transition Committees gave a report to Council that included presentation of the new Diocesan Profile and the timeline for the search process. Before the close of business on Friday evening, Bishop Hollerith and his wife, Lizzie, were welcomed into the chamber as Council honored Bishop Hollerith's decade of ministry to Southern Virginia with speeches, gifts and champagne. After Council adjourned, the festivities continued at a reception.   
Council passed the proposed 2019 diocesan budget and elected new members of the Standing Committee, Disciplinary Board and delegates to Provincial Synod.  
  • Standing Committee: Helen Sharpe-Williams (Grace, Norfolk) and the Rev. Cameron Randle (Eastern Shore Chapel, Virginia Beach)
  • Disciplinary Board: Bob Motley (Ascension, Norfolk); the Rev. Charles Bauer (Hickory Neck, Toano); the Rev. Lauren McDonald (Bruton Parish, Williamsburg)
  • Provincial Synod: Alice Webley (All Saints, Virginia Beach) and the Rev. Grant Stokes (Trinity, Portsmouth)
Bishop Magness with the Council Youth Delegation 
Four resolutions were considered by Council. Resolution CON-1 made language changes to portions of the Diocesan Constitution to make that language gender neutral. The resolution passed. Resolution R-1 was related to the election of the board of trustees of the Boys Home of Virginia and was passed. Resolution C-1, and the related Resolution C-2, was proposed by the Mission Share Task Force and offered a plan for congregational giving to diocesan ministry that adopted 10% tithe as the minimum standard. There was considerable debate on Resolution C-1, which was ultimately tabled. Resolution C-2 was withdrawn.
Many more photos from Council are available on our Facebook and Instagram. Thanks to Jackie Rochelle of Epiphany, Norfolk, for serving as Council photographer.

Missioner for Latino Ministries departing Southern Virginia

Angelica Garcia-Randle, Missioner for Latino Ministries on the Eastern Shore, will be departing for a position on the West Coast early next month. For the past three years, Garcia-Randle has served the Diocese of Southern Virginia as its first Latino Missioner. Her ministry has included advocacy, counseling, fund-raising and missional work with the Latino immigrant and migrant worker population on the Eastern Shore. She has worked in collaboration with a number of parishes on the Shore and throughout the diocese, particularly in Virginia Beach and Norfolk. She will remain in her current role until March 1, 2019.
"I've known Angelica for nearly twenty years," says The Rev. Canon Jaime Edwards-Acton, Executive Director of the non-profit Jubilee Consortium in Hollywood, CA, where Garcia-Randle will administer a new program (Jubilee Jump!) emphasizing healthy lifestyle choices for Latino youth. "I have experienced her to be passionate about bringing positive change to people's lives. She is friendly, artistic, organized, outgoing, relentless and fearless. These are the leadership qualities we need to transform our humble jump rope clubs in under-resourced neighborhoods of Los Angeles into a vibrant, competitive league that will help young people to become healthier, learn valuable life skills and grow as community leaders."
Garcia-Randle has served as Missioner while pursuing a BA in Applied Design, with a concentration in photography, at the University of Maryland, Eastern Shore in Princess Anne, MD. She plans to return to UMES to complete her degree at the end of the Jubilee Jump! Grant administration cycle in 2020. Her husband, The Rev. Cameron Randle, presently serves as Priest-in-Charge at Eastern Shore Chapel in Virginia Beach. Together, the Garcia-Randles founded Dos Santos Community Services, a non-profit created to undertake Latino ministry on the Eastern Shore when no formal diocesan avenue for Latino ministry existed.
"We will miss Angelica and her enthusiasm and compassionate activism for and with the Latino people on the Eastern Shore," notes The Rev. Jeunee Godsey, member of the diocesan Latino Ministries Board. "She has been able grow the ministry of Dos Santos, build ecumenical and community partners, and help churches throughout the diocese minister in effective ways on the Eastern shore. The need for Latino Ministries continues, and I, and the rest of the Latino Ministries Board, look forward to working with our Bishop and Executive Board as we look to continue and expand the diocesan work with our Latino brothers and sisters."

Canterbury Gala & Silent Auction tickets on sale

Get your tickets today for the 2019 Canterbury Gala & Silent Auction being held in the Christopher Wren Building on the William & Mary campus on Saturday, February 23, from 6 to 9 p.m. Tickets are $75. Proceeds from the gala support the Canterbury Missions Fun which provides grants to various charities and scholarships to William & Mary students for international mission trips.
To attend, please visit or email for tickets. To donate items for the gala, please contact Alex Maneval at