- Region I
- Region II
- Region III
- Region V
- Region VI
- Region VII
- Region VIII
- Region X
- Region XI
- Region XII
- Region XIV
- Region XV
- Anna Julia Cooper Episcopal School
- Committee on Congregational Missions
- Committee on Ecumenical and Interfaith Relations
- Executive Board
- Committee on Mission and Outreach
- Committee on the Prevention of Sexual Misconduct
- Commitee on Race & Reconciliation
- R-2a Task Force
- Shrine Mont
- Standing Committee
- Stewardship of Creation
- The Virginia Diocesan Center at Roslyn
Region One is composed of the 19 churches at the center of the Diocese of Virginia from the Blue Ridge to the Northern Neck, the largest region of the Diocese, stretching 100 miles across.
At the end of last year, I noted that one third of our churches were going through a rector or other transition during 2013. I am pleased to report that two churches, St. Stephen’s of Culpeper and St. James’ in Louisa, now have new rectors and as I write this, St. George’s and Church of the Messiah in Fredericksburg have called rectors for January 2015. We still have three other churches in the interim phase.
We have stressed contributing to mission, youth and helping with the emergency needs of local churches. In that regard, we contributed $1,000 to Aquia Church’s Mifflintown, Penn., mission project for home repairs. We fulfilled a 2013 pledge to Shrine Mont Camps for $1,000 and we plan to match that in 2015. As in previous years we provided $2,500 for The University of Mary Washington’s Canterbury Episcopal & Lutheran Campus Ministry.
The stress on mission and youth was also evident in our choice of programs in 2014. Our youth delegates to Annual Council dominated the February meeting demonstrating to all of us that Council provides a wonderful foundation for growth in leadership and how the Council’s story format energized these youth.
Region I journeyed to Haiti in its May meeting focusing on international mission. Our program was led by two young adults. Madeline Moravitz went with the Diocese Young Adult group renewing contacts in Haiti and Matt Mason represented St. George’s Haiti team which concentrates on medical missions.
The focus for our third meeting in 2014 was on food ministries which relate to three of the five priorities of mission and ministry. We invited representatives of food ministries in the region to the meeting so that we had over 40 in attendance. The discussion was led by representatives of St. George’s food ministry, the Table, a market style food ministry provided every Tuesday. The diversity of approach in food ministries was amazing, and we have been searching for ways to maintain this conversation.
Our last meeting featured one of our own Ed Jones, secretary and chief of staff at the Diocese, to help us plan for the next year. Ed talked to talk about five priorities of the Diocese as well their relationship to eight initiatives of Region One created in 2010.
We elected a new president, Sharon Boivin, and vice president, Martin Lewis, to lead the region in 2015. Sharon spoke of the need in 2015 for more community sharing and having us get to know each other better, both spiritually and socially. She will alter the time of the next meeting to include a 6 p.m. Eucharist. She will also have name plates to facilitate communication as well as possible use of small group discussions. Her focus will be establishing core ideas – what is the overall mission and vision of the region? How do we continue to build this community, particularly through sharing?
I started this report with transitions and conclude with two more demonstrating that our region and Diocese are constantly on the move in a positive direction. We welcomed representatives from Graves Chapel in Western Madison County who are seeking to establish that church as a separate mission with the blessings of Piedmont Madison with which they are currently associated. They are currently in discernment after meeting with Bishop Goff. Emmanuel Episcopal from Rapidan is already a separate mission. Originally a parish, they were forced to move back to mission status after a series of floods devastated the area. In November, the Executive Board voted to recommend returning them to Parish status which we supported unanimously.
Submitted by: Ben Hicks, President
- Quarterly meetings were held at Yeocomico Church in Westmoreland, Immanuel Church in King & Queen, Kingston Parish in Mathews, and St. John’s Church in Tappahannock.
- Annual Evensong was held at Grace Church in Kilmarnock with Canon to the Ordinary Pat Wingo as guest preacher.
- New clergy in 2014 are the Rev. Peter Hogg (St. John’s Warsaw & Farnham), the Rev. Barbara Marques (St. John’s West Point), the Rev. Sandi Mizirl (St. Mary’s Fleeton), the Rev. Grant Ambrose (Ware), and the Rev. Anita Braden (St. Margaret’s School).
- Work continues on the renovation of the previous St. Mark’s in Essex under the leadership of Region II Vice President Ann Brown.
- Johnathon Williams of Christ Church-Middlesex was elected youth delegate to 220th Council of the Diocese.
- Speakers at quarterly meetings included the director of development for Shrine Mont, director of communications and director of Christian formation for the Diocese, president of Continuing Care Retirement Communities, and litigation counsel for the Diocese.
- Recognition and appreciation was given to William H. Pennell for his years of service to Region II as president and then longtime treasurer.
- Scholarships were provided to youth parishioners to attend Shrine Mont Camp.
- President Steve Walker attended a seminar on Cemetery Conservation and provided information on the care of gravestones and other memorial markers. Useful website is gravestonepreservation.info.
- The president also provided examples of fundraising merchandise available through episcopalmarketplace.org with telephone number 1-866-937-2772. He also shared a miniature replica of Yeocomico Church available through www.catsmeow.com. Sale of church replicas can provide needed resources.
Submitted by: Mr. Stevenson T. Walker, President
Clergy, Annual Council delegates and alternates met as a region four times in 2014.
Region III continued its tradition of sponsoring the yearly Lenten study series. On five consecutive Tuesdays in Lent, the seven parishes and two missions comprising Region III met at St. Mary’s, Arlington, for a light meal and to study "The Gospel according to Harry Potter" with Patricia Lyons of St. Stephen’s and St. Agnes School in Alexandria.
Throughout the year, clergy of Region III held their monthly clericus meeting, worked cooperatively with Samaritan Ministry on rental assistance and the Next Step program.
A new president and treasurer for the region were elected in 2014, and the region adopted a new Covenant [formerly called by-laws] at its December 11 meeting. At the same meeting Kirk Gibson, development director for Shrine Mont, presented a video and details of the Shout it from the Mountain fund-raising campaign. In late 2014, the Rev. Ann Barker/St. John’s and the Rev. Jenny Montgomery/St. Andrew’s were elected Executive Board representative and alternate for Region III.
For 2015, Region III will meet four times. Its 2015 Lenten Study will be "The Letter to the Hebrews" conducted by the Rev. Dr. A. Katherine Grieb, the Meade Professor in Biblical Interpretation at Virginia Theological Seminary.
Submitted by: Mr. Peter Wehmann, President
In 2014, Region V enjoyed greater collaboration among our nine parishes. We continued to seek opportunities to leverage the strengths and resources of our individual parishes to make an even greater impact in Northern Fairfax County. Highlights include:
Youth and Young Adult Ministry – Blessed with an extremely gifted and energetic deacon, the Rev. Deacon Mary Beth Emerson, we had a very active youth ministry this year, featuring not only Christian formation activities and opportunities to seek and serve Christ in others, but also fellowship and great fun! This year, Deacon Mary Beth created an effective network among the youth leaders in our region’s parishes and led our youth delegate nomination process.
Strengthening our Congregations – Region V meetings actively engaged our delegates and provided opportunity to learn from each other: what works in one parish that might assist another, or programs replicated in multiple parishes that might enjoy greater impact as a region-wide initiative, and open invitations to events around our Region. External speakers and diocesan representatives also sparked our imaginations and helped us identify ways to strengthen our congregations and our shared ministry.
Evangelism and Proclamation – With close proximity of our parishes, we sought creative ways to engage and serve God’s people wherever they may be in our community – including at the Metro station and the local shopping mall! We continue to engage the ARISE Campus Ministry at George Mason University and provide modest financial support. Epiphany’s inaugural Hypothermia Prevention Shelter during Christmas week was actively supported with volunteers and supplies from four other Region V parishes.
Multiculturalism and Ethnic Ministries – Region V is committed to the emerging Latino ministry in Northern Fairfax County. In spite of the loss of the Rev. Natividad Menjivar, who initiated the program at St. Timothy’s Herndon and later relocated outside the Diocese, the region has continued to provide financial support to the Latino ministry in hope of greater momentum and expansion. We are blessed to also have St. Francis Korean congregation in our region.
Mission Beyond Ourselves – A source of great pride is the annual youth mission trip to Dungannon. Over 60 youth from across the region participated in this week-long service trip to one of the poorest areas in Virginia. Through strong collaboration among our parishes and youth leaders and financial support from the region, this continues to be one of our flagship initiatives and a model of effective shared ministry. Most Region V parishes have active domestic and international mission programs; we continue to seek opportunities to leverage each other’s successes and collaborate.
A priority for 2015 is to launch our “Region Life Committee,” an initiative to discern our “shared mission” as a Region. With compelling visits in 2014 from Bishop Ted and Kirk Gibson, we will also be responding to the “Shout it from the Mountain” capital campaign for Shrine Mont Camps.
Submitted by: Ms. Diane Miller, President
At our January 19, 2014 meeting, Kristina Campbell was elected as youth delegate.The dean reported from Clericus that the Diocese has confirmed its commitment to San Marcos.The Executive Committee stressed the importance of pledges and audits.
At our May 16, 2014 meeting: The Dean reported that the cost of council and the Shrine Mont Capital Campaign are areas of interest. The Executive Committee report discussed the Council name change issue, the work of the Sudanese Task Force, and the status of various Council resolutions. San Marcos was urged to apply for a Mustard Seed Grant. San Marcos reported that Natividad Manjivar has departed for Oklahoma City and welcomed Jose Reyes as pastor-in-charge. Olivet welcomes interim priest Jeannie Martinez-Jantz.. Church of the Spirit announces that Roger Schellenberg will retire but stay on as supply priest.
At our October 9, 2014 meeting, Emily Cherry and Paris Ball discussed their overlapping and complimentary ministries at the Diocese; Mike Morgan was elected as treasurer; Jim Bailes was elected as Executive Board Representative at the conclusion of Tuck Bowerfind’s tenure; Claire Questad was elected youth delegate and Gabby Pineda was elected alternate. The treasurer noted that all allocated funds have been distributed and pledges appear current. The dean reported that Mary Thorpe has been appointed director of Transitional Ministry. The Executive Board brought the region up to date on Council details. The president announced the forwarding of the Shrine Mont Capital Campaign toolkit. All Saint’s announced the appointment of Davette Hines as trainer for the Catachesis of the Good Shepherd Program. St. Margaret’s announced the appointment of the Rev. Kathy Guin as rector. The Rev. Ketlan Solak has been called to the Diocese of Delaware as a Covenant Rector for the Brandywine Collaborative Ministry.
Submitted by: Mr. Douglas Varner, President
This has been a good year for Region VII – looking at who we are, where we may be headed and who we want to be in this Diocese. We began the year by thanking the Rev. Stuart Schadt from Trinity in Manassas, as he stepped down from being regional dean. The Rev. Dr. DeDe Duncan Probe, from St. Peter’s in the Woods, Fairfax Station, was asked by Bishop Johnston to serve as our Dean. This left a one-year vacancy on the Executive Board, which was ably filled by the Rev. Peter K. Ackerman from St. Christopher’s in Springfield. Mrs. Kellee Wattenbarger, of St. Christopher’s, has volunteered to be the regional representative to the Diocesan Christian Formation Committee when that becomes active.
The regional president, Mrs. Helen Spence of St. Christopher’s, has worked with the dean to find topics of interest for our quarterly meetings. Our first meeting in February generated some interest in a possible regional fundraiser, or social event, but that didn’t really go anywhere. At our May meeting, we met in the Historic Chapel at Truro Church for the first time in nine years. We had a guest from Virginia Diocesan Homes speak to us about their work. We elected our youth delegate for the 2015 annual council. We also continued our conversation about having our region try to do something as a group, rather than as individual parishes. Our September meeting had a presentation on the “greening of our churches” from a member of the diocesan Stewardship of Creation Committee – and we were visited by the canon to the ordinary, the Rev. Pat Wingo, and the Rev. Deacon Ed Jones, secretary of the Diocese. Their conversation helped us to decide to use our parish ministries to spark a regional discussion. So, at our November meeting, we talked about our outreach ministries – and found many common themes to the work we do as individual parishes. We plan to continue exploring the work we are doing in 2015 – beginning with a presentation by the diocesan Disaster Preparedness Committee, and a visit from the communications director of the Diocese, Emily Cherry.
We are blessed to be a part of a diocese which is here to help us discern – whose staff is eager to meet and assist in whatever projects we may have in mind. Hopefully, 2015 will bring us a new breath of the Holy Spirit to guide our discussions and work.
Submitted by: Mrs. Helen K. Spence, President
The Region VIII parishes and affiliated organizations include: Iglesia de Santa Maria (Falls Church), St. Alban’s (Annandale), St. Barnabas’ (Annandale), St. Patrick’s (Falls Church), St. Paul’s (Bailey’s Crossroads), The Falls Church (Falls Church), and the Center for Liturgy and the Arts (Annandale).
2014 Officers: Christine King (St. Paul’s), President; Scott Moser (St. Barnabas’), Vice President; Secretary; Gail Coleman (St. Alban’s), Treasurer.
At last year’s Annual Council, the Very Rev. Jeff Shankles (St. Alban’s) was appointed our new Dean.
2014 has been a rebuilding year for Region VIII as we considered what the purpose of Region VIII should be. We plan to continue this discussion in 2015.
Region VIII elected Erin Dubas of St. Patrick’s/St. Alban’s as Region VIII’s Youth Delegate and Kendall Huheey of St. Alban’s as Region VIII’s Alternate Youth Delegate to the 220th Council of the Diocese.
Submitted by: Ms. Christine King, President
The five churches that comprise Region X have been very active within the community. Initiatives include the following:
- All but one of the Region X churches are active in CARITAS, serving as intake sites and/or providing housing and food for the homeless.
- All participate in ACTS, Area Congregations Together in Service, a homeless prevention and housing stabilization program that began at St. James’s and has expanded to include more than 100 congregations within the City of Richmond
- St. Mark’s has become a cooling center for the City of Richmond. It is the only cooling shelter that allows pets.
- St. Andrew’s has begun providing laundry service for the homeless.
Food insecurity in the community is a continuing problem. St. James’s provides support to the Central Virginia Food Bank; St. Marks’s and St. Andrews operate a joint food pantry on the2nd and 4th Saturday of each month that also provides a hot meal; Holy Comforter operates a food pantry on the 1st and 3rd Saturdays, with a hot meal once a month for participants; and Grace & Holy Trinity operates a food pantry for VCU students along with a hot meal on Sunday evenings.
Several of our churches are involved in renovation projects.
- Grace & Holy Trinity is undergoing a major renovation of their Parish Hall. They prayerfully anticipate that it will be completed within the next 60 days.
- Holy Comforter has undergone an energy assessment and is installing a new Heating, Ventilating and Air Conditioning System throughout their church and Parish Hall.
- St. Mark’s completed the installation of a new heating and cooling system in the parish hall that has provided the opportunity to become a summer cooling center. Other plant improvements include painting, new lighting and signage, and landscaping, with additional improvements to come.
St. Andrew’s Episcopal Service Corps community , Grace on the Hill, continues to thrive. Applications are being received for the third year of the program.
Mission trips taking place from Region X include such locations as Belize, Cuba, Haiti, Honduras and Kentucky.
Joint programs supported by and from the Region include the VCU Campus Ministry, St. Andrew’s School and Anna Julia Cooper School.
Submitted by: Ms. Margaret Jones, President
Serving the counties of Hanover, Henrico, King William and the City of Richmond, Region XI is uniquely urban, suburban and rural. In 2014, Region XI was well-served with the strong leadership of: The Very Rev. Mary Brennan Thorpe as dean, new leadership as of October by the Very Rev. Phoebe Roaf as dean, and Executive Board member the Rev. Amelie Wilmer. Region XI ends the year well-staffed as 10 congregations have a rector or vicar, one has a priest-in-charge, three have interims, and one is served by a supply priest. Region XI clergy and laypersons strive to build relationships by supporting one another, sharing ideas, and communicating about the Region’s goings-on and other important information related to the Diocese of Virginia and Episcopal Church of the USA.
During 2014, quarterly meetings were held around the region in February-Emmanuel Brook Hill, May-St. Paul’s Hanover, August-Immanuel Old Church, and November-Church of Our Saviour Montpelier.
Highlights of 2014:
Council 2014 Youth Delegate was Sarah Lassiter from Epiphany
Search, search and more search; filled three rector, three interim and one supply positions
- Absalom Jones Day
- Blessing of the Animals
- Blue Grass Mass
- Gather and Invite
- Jamestown Eucharist
- Rite of Reconciliation
- Secretariat Service
- Daily Lenten devotional booklet written by members
- “I am who I am” based on “I am” statements spoken by Jesus in the Gospel of John
- Music, music and more music
- Welcome to the Table series with Lutheran church
- Afternoon Sunday school for neighborhood children
- Cherub School
- Godly Play
- St. Giles Gate for children who can benefit from nontraditional Christian education
- Sunday schools teaching 2 to 200 each Sunday
- VBS music camp
- Youth preaching
Adult education and formation:
- Boomer Camp at Shrine Mont
- Broad Church BBC Series viewing and discussion group
- Church History class
- Education for Ministry
- Episcopal 101
- Feasting on the Word
- LoveLife series by the Society of St. John the Evangelist
- Medieval Christianity
- Men’s yoga group
- Prayer Books and Potables, off-site formation group
- Wellness Seminar
- Women’s healing and prayer groups
- Cornerstone Ministries
- Ecumenical project “Sack Hunger”
- Habitat for Humanity build parish family
- Halloween party at Peter Paul Development Center
- Micah Initiative
- New Orleans house repair
- South Carolina-St. Paul’s annual mission project with St. James Warrenton
- Tutoring neighborhood students
Special projects, events, and fun:
- Church bazaars
- College ministry
- Community gardens
- Cruise ship murder mystery, rendition of “Gladys Knight and the Pips,” Men’s Day jazz concert, football watching
- Episcopal Church Women continued projects, revitalized anew in other parishes
- Firewood ministry
- Food: steak, oysters, chili, Brunswick stew, soup cook-off, food trucks, spaghetti, freezer meals for shut-ins
- Groundbreaking and addition completed at Church of Our Saviour
- Parish picnic at Roslyn
Diocesan Office’s Paris Ball and Emily Cherry discussed available written and social media, developing programs and curriculum, the many resources available, Shrine Mont’s camp and retreat opportunities, scholarship money, E-formation, using technological resources (i.e. Skype, Facebook groups, email lists) to supplement learning; encouraging all to look at and use the central hub of information on the Diocese website.
Diocesan Office’s Kirk Gibson shared details and video regarding Shout It from the Mountain capital campaign for Shrine Mont. The Rev. Herbert Jones discussed his experience as a St. George’s counselor and the importance of scholarship funds for campers.
Priorities for Region XI in 2015:
- Further engagement of youth and young adults in the Church
- Support for the Shrine Mont capital campaign
- Submitted by: Ms. Ginny Dunaway Ferguson, President
Region XII began 2014 with new officers taking the leadership positions for the upcoming three years. Carolyn Stevens (Grace Episcopal - Goochland) is the new secretary and Ed Rhodes (All Saints - Richmond) is the new president, moving up from secretary. Immediate past president Tom Crockett (Christ Church - Glen Allen) will serve as the region's representative on the Executive Board. Jill Wood (St. Bartholomew's - Richmond) continues as treasurer.
During the year, members of our youth worked with the Peter Paul Development Center during their summer camp at Roslyn for a week. We are looking forward to the possibility of doing this again in 2015.
We held our annual Ascension Day service at St. Bartholomew's with Bishop Shannon officiating. In addition, we gathered in early December for our annual dinner at Roslyn. Kirk Gibson of Shrine Mont was the guest speaker. Region XII presented Kirk with a donation to the Shout It from the Mountain campaign.
Our January 2015 meeting will be the week of council with the Rev. Deacon Ed Jones as the guest speaker. Regions IX, X and XI have been invited to attend which will be our first joint meeting with the other Richmond area regions.
We will conclude the first half of 2015 with our Ascension Day service at the Bishop's Chapel at Roslyn.
Submitted by: Mr. Ed Rhodes, President
Our Dean convened four meetings during 2014 because our President had resigned (due to job transition) and we had no Vice President to succeed her. It was not until our late November meeting that we elected a new president.
We enjoyed guest speakers who engaged us in the topics of evangelism and stewardship – particularly with the “Shout it from the Mountain” Campaign.
Our region financially supported:
- Strengthening Our Congregations (and existing ministries): Canterbury Campus Ministry (JMU, Harrisonburg)
- Multiculturalism and Ethnic Ministries: Lakota Pilgrimage to the Rosebud Reservation in South Dakota
- Mission Beyond Ourselves: Bore hole – water well at St. Paul Parish, Diocese of Ibba, South Sudan
- Youth and Young Adult Formation: Youth Delegates to Annual Council and Shrinemont Conference Center
As 2015 begins, we intend to commit to re-envision the role of our regional structure; how we can foster greater cooperation across a large geographical area both between our two large anchor churches (Christ Church, Winchester, and Emmanuel, Harrisonburg) and among our smaller to tiny churches and missions: and strive to achieve ministry opportunities that would be beyond the scope of a single church’s resources.
Submitted by Mr. Skip Barchers, President, Region XIV
Region XV is comprised of 19 churches within the city of Charlottesville, the county of Albemarle, and also in parts of Greene, Fluvanna, and Orange counties.
The Region XV Council met four times since our last diocesan Council meeting. Each of our gatherings was held at a different parish within our region. Each evening began with a service at 6 p.m. followed by time for a reception, fellowship and dinner. The business meeting usually began at 7:30. An average attendance for each meeting was approximately 35 delegates and/or clergy.
On Thursday, Feb. 27, we met at Emmanuel Church in Greenwood and were honored to have Ed Jones, secretary of the Diocese, join us as our guest and speaker. On Thursday, May 15, we met at St Paul’s Memorial in Charlottesville. Paris Ball and Emily Cherry joined us and gave us a report on diocesan activities. On Thursday, September 18, we met at Grace, Keswick, and had a program on local and international outreach. On Thursday, November 13, we met at Trinity, Charlottesville and had Rev. Cass Bailey talk about the new food ministry at Trinity.
Region XV has several significant outreach ministries which it supports. The Schoolhouse Thrift Shop at Rio just celebrated its 22nd anniversary. It continues to be not only a wonderful place of fellowship for members of the region who volunteer there, but is also a very much needed ministry to the community. The Thrift Shop also continues to be a large contributor to the outreach budget of the region. The Ministry with the Aging, under the guidance of our marvelous missioners,continues to meet the needs of many elderly within the region. AIM serves to help those in emergency situations by helping with prescriptions, utility bills, and transportation. PACEM is a local homeless shelter and program. Again this year Region XV supported the ministry of Habitat for Humanity, inboth Albemarle and Greene Counties. There are also several significant donations given to local charities including the Mitchell House for battered women, Grace Alliance in Greene County and the Christian Emergency Council in Orange County. This year we provided scholarship assistance to a member of one of our parishes who is in formation for the Vocational Diaconate.
All of us in Region XV are looking forward to continuing and strengthening our ministries in communities throughout our region in 2015.
Submitted by: Mr. John A. Savage, President
Anna Julia Cooper Episcopal School is alive and well and almost half-way through our sixth year. Our current enrollment is 85 students with 51 of our graduates in high school in grades 9 through 11.
Financially, we continue to be extraordinarily fortunate owing to the generosity of those who believe in the work we are doing. As part of that, we have benefitted from some recent legislation which provides a tax break for individuals who support low-income students in independent schools in Virginia.
Our religious identity is as strong as ever. I still like to think of us as a religious organization in the form of a school. The spirit of our namesake, Anna Julia Cooper, herself an Episcopalian woman of deep faith, is present in the building. We begin each day gathered as an entire community at prayer, and celebrate weekly chapel with a priest, using the Book of Common Prayer. Several times a month we have communion. We also follow the liturgical calendar of the Episcopal Church and teach the students key elements of the faith. Many teachers and staff pray with their students as a matter of course.
The essential narrative of AJC remains unchanged: 1) We are growing and flourishing, succeeding in our mission of helping students change the trajectory of their lives by building a community of affection within which we focus on the essentials of a solid education from reading and writing to athletics and basic life skills. 2) We have battles each day, primarily because a significant number of our students come from such challenging and painful circumstances which are not easily overcome. We lose some of those battles.
Significant developments in the past year include:
- Opening a 5th grade where we have already seen extraordinary growth from the students. This followed a board decision which now enables us to work with students for one additional year.
- Finding ourselves on the most solid financial footing yet. We are not yet forward-funded for a year, but such a goal is now clearly in sight.
- Most of our founding class, now 11th graders, are making college visits, preparing for SAT and ACT testing, and otherwise looking to the next step in their education.
- Of particular academic note is the concrete growth in reading and writing, critical areas in which we have focused additional resources, energy, and time, and where we are seeing the fruits of those efforts.
Some goals for 2015:
- Accreditation by VAIS. The visiting team will be coming in the Fall.
- Expansion to a full 5th grade so that we have 24 students in each grade, 5th through 8th.
- We will be in the fifth year of a five-year lease and will need to decide if we will renew it, move elsewhere, or otherwise determine where the Spirit is leading us.
- Strengthen our Graduate Support Program. As of this June, we will have close to 75 graduates in high school, freshmen through seniors.
Submitted by: Mr. Mike Maruca, Head of School
Bloomfield appreciates the support it receives from various Churches in the Diocese of Virginia, Southern Virginia and Southwestern Virginia. In 2014 the Board was able to grant $128,874 for equipment not available to children and young adults by any other means.
The following are examples of requests provided:
Stair Lift & Ramp
Three Wheel Mobility Device
The Board wishes it could do more but is constrained by the funds available. Trustees are volunteers from the Diocese of Virginia, Southern Virginia and Southwestern Virginia. Administrative costs do not exceed 2% of all funding. Trustees meet at St. George’s Church in Fredericksburg, VA in May and November. Any other information desired may be sent to: Bloomfield, C/O Courtney G. Kohler, Box 445, Middleburg, VA 20118. Respectfully submitted: Courtney G. Kohler.
The Committee on Congregational Missions (CCM) assists the bishop suffragan in her delegated oversight of the approximately 35 mission churches in the Diocese. Its members serve as lay liaisons or as area priests. Each lay liaison works closely with the mission(s) assigned to him or her and provides regular reports to the bishop suffragan and to the other members regarding each mission’s spiritual wellbeing and financial stability. Area priests serve as resources for the liaisons and the mission churches and may represent the bishop suffragan when a diocesan response is needed.
We are grateful for the leadership and support of our bishop suffragan, the Rt. Rev. Susan E. Goff. Bishop Susan’s leadership has helped us to maintain our focus on supporting the mission congregations that we serve, but has also caused us to refine and revisit elements of our work as a committee. The diocesan staff has also been a great source of support and assistance for us.
One particularly engaging element of CCM is that we meet “on site” at a mission congregation six or seven times a year. This allows us to meet at different locations throughout the diocese and to understand more fully the mission context for the church that serves as host for us. This also gives mission congregations an opportunity to share with us their hopes and dreams as well as to better explain their needs. One highlight of 2014 was visiting St. Martin’s, Doswell, a church of about 10 members, who nonetheless was planning an ambitious community garden to feed the poor in their area. Another significant meeting took place at Trinity, Highland Springs, shortly after that congregation had made the decision to close its doors. We shared with them in their grief at closing as well as their celebration of the work that they had done together in God’s name.
CCM assists missions in their quest for full parish status. In 2013 and 2014, Bishop Susan brought to our attention the fact that there are many mission churches in the diocese who do not receive diocesan aid, and yet remain classified as mission congregations. In 2014 we began to explore the possibility of some of the congregation that fit this description to seek full parish status. We anticipate that the first of these churches, Emmanuel, Rapidan, will be granted full parish status at Annual Council 2015.
In 2014, we continued to emphasize our desire to have each mission church under CCM supervision to complete a covenant with CCM, on behalf of the larger diocese. In return for support and funding, we ask each church to engage in at least one activity each year that will move it beyond its walls. During the time we have utilize the covenant, we have see mission churches create innovative and exciting new ministries, each different, but with the common element of moving beyond the church and into the community.
The members of CCM are a talented, dedicated and lively group. Our meetings are filled with energy and our liaisons care deeply about their ministry of supporting mission congregations in the diocese. We are thankful for the opportunity to serve Christ on this committee.
Submitted by: The Rev. David Keill, Chair
The Rev. Dr. Christopher M. Agnew serves as Ecumenical Officer and the Rev. Diane Carroll as Associate Ecumenical Officer of the Diocese. The Ecumenical Officer and Associate Ecumenical Officer also serve as co-chairs of the Diocesan Ecumenical and Interfaith Relations Committee (DEIC). In 2014 your Ecumenical Officers and the DEIC have been involved in a number of activities to promote the unity of the one Church for whom our Lord prayed on the eve of his death.
An essential element for all ecumenical relations is the nurture of personal relationships. These relationships must take place between judicatory heads and those who work in the area of ecumenical relations on their behalf. Relationships of this type take time to develop and once developed need to be sustained over a period of years. The work of your Ecumenical Officers and of the Diocesan Ecumenical and Interfaith Committee is about developing and sustaining our ecumenical relationships. It also involves our joint witness with other Christians to the Gospel through mission and through the exploration of theology.
In response to the Call to Common Mission agreement of Full Communion between the Episcopal Church and the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA), we have continued to seek ways in which we can more fully live into this relationship. The Rev. Dr. Christopher Agnew attended the Annual Assembly of the Virginia Synod of the ELCA. The Metropolitan Washington Lutheran-Episcopal Joint Coordinating Committee has continued to meet. This committee is made up of representation from the Episcopal Dioceses of Washington and Virginia as well as the Metropolitan Washington Synod of the ELCA. The Rev. Dr. Christopher Agnew and the Rev. Dr. Craig A. Phillips serve on this committee for the Diocese of Virginia.
The Diocese of Virginia belongs to the Virginia LARCUM Covenant. This Covenant has been signed by the bishops of the three Episcopal dioceses in Virginia, the two Evangelical Lutheran Church in America synods, the two Roman Catholic dioceses and the Virginia Conference of the United Methodist Church. The Rev. Diane Carroll served as the chair of planning committee and 2014 LARCUM conference. The theme of the 2014 conference was “The New Landscape of Post-Christian Christianity.” The LARCUM conference took place in Norfolk on December 5 and December 6.
The National Workshop on Christian Unity and the annual meeting of the Episcopal Diocesan Ecumenical and Interreligious Officers took place this year in Albuquerque, New Mexico, on April 28-May 1. There are numerous seminars and presentations at the Workshop. The annual meeting of the Episcopal Diocesan Ecumenical and Interfaith Officers is the occasion for interaction between your ecumenical officers, the Presiding Bishop’s ecumenical staff and the Standing Commission on Ecumenical and Interreligious Relations. Dr. Agnew serves as Vice-President of the National Episcopal Ecumenical and Interfaith Officers. The Annual Meeting of the National Episcopal Ecumenical and Interfaith Officers (EDEIO) takes place concurrently with the Workshop.
The principal ecumenical agencies supported by the Diocese of Virginia are the Interfaith Center for Public Policy and the Virginia Council of Churches. The Center for Public Policy works on behalf the faith community with the General Assembly. The Virginia Council of Churches has recently seen the end of its role in refugee resettlement and it ministry of providing head start education for the children of migrant workers. These have been two of the major programs of the council for many years. The Diocese of Virginia has been one of the major contributors to the council.
The Rt. Rev. Edwin F. Gulick, Jr. and the Rev. Dr. Christopher M. Agnew serve on the Coordinating Cabinet of the Virginia Council of Churches and Dr. Agnew serves on the Steering Committee of VCC as well. The theological work of the council is done through the Commission on Faith and Order, which is chaired by the Rev. Dr. Christopher Agnew.
Members of DEIC welcome the opportunity to speak to each Regional Council at least annually on our current ecumenical commitments and interfaith developments. We also are prepared to speak to individual parishes.
Submitted by: The Rev. Dr. Christopher M. Agnew, Ecumenical Officer, and The Rev. Diane Carroll, Associate Ecumenical Officer, Co-Chairs of Diocese of Virginia Ecumenical and Interfaith Relations Committee
Bishop Johnston calls us the vestry of the Diocese. As such, we have met six times this year across the Diocese at St. Albans, Annandale; St. James the Less, Ashland; Trinity, Upperville; St. Mary’s , Colonial Beach; St. Stephen’s, Culpeper; and the Mayo House, Richmond. We fire up our GPS’s and/or check with Map Quest and off we go.
The Executive Board is composed of 15 members, one from each region. We are divided into two working groups, Program and Budget. The Program Group is led by the Rev. Tuck Bowerfind with Ed Jones, Emily Cherry, and Buck Blanchard of the diocesan staff serving in advisory roles. The Budget Group is led by Karen Grane and Ted Smith, the diocesan treasurer, with assistance and support by Joy Buzzard of the diocesan staff. We are joined twice a year by the regional presidents.
Meetings are scheduled for four hours, with reports and Diocese business consuming the first two to two and a half hours. Over a working box lunch, each of the working groups meets for at least an hour. We then reconvene and hear reports from each of the working groups, and vote on their recommendations.
During the year we have had regular reports from our three bishops. Bishop Johnston reported on trips to Camp Allen, Texas for the House of Bishops; Reclaiming the Gospel of Peace conference in Oklahoma City; the House of Bishops in Taiwan; and the consecration of the Rt. Rev. Paul Bayse in Liverpool. His excitement and spiritual renewal came through loud and clear after each of these experiences. Bishop Goff provided us with updates on Latino Ministry, the Building for the Futures conference, continued to update us on the progress of Dayspring, and championed the small and mission churches. She also made the trip to Taiwan, and attended the consecration of the new Bishop in El Salvador. She was spiritually renewed especially after the trip to Taiwan. Bishop Gulick kept us informed of the progress of the Shrine Mont Capital Campaign which he continues to champion with gusto. He also reported on his visitations about the Diocese and how they continue to renew his spirituality. He provides needed guidance and support when Bishop Shannon is out of the Diocese.
The Program Working Group spent a lot of time focused on how to report out the progress and follow up by the Executive Board and diocesan staff on their responses to resolutions passed at Annual Council. In June, they published a detailed report that was shared with all the regions through their representatives on the Board and regional presidents. They also focused on recommending Mustard Seed awards, and redeveloping the guidelines for both the Mustard Seed and Peter James Lee Small Church grant applications. The group also discussed the possibility of doing the Pre-Council hearings on the internet. This was accomplished with great success in early January of this year.
The Budget Working Group worked on developing the 2015 Budget to be presented at Annual Council. The 2013 Audit was reviewed and approved. Treasurer Ted Smith presented a detailed accounting of Day Spring expenses, and the working group reviewed them and offered suggestions as to how to clarify them for presentation at Annual Council. They also recommended the extension of our line of credit at Sun Trust when offered a favorable interest rate. They reviewed requests for exemptions from Canon 31, and reviewed the sale of several properties to help retire the debt from the litigation.
The whole board was involved in a review of last year’s Annual Council, and made several recommendations for this year’s Council meeting. Among them was moving the Resolutions part of the program to Friday afternoon, reducing the cost of registration, and continuing the presentations from parishes around the Diocese. They supported Bishop Johnston’s recommendation to create two groups to tackle and study Resolution 8 from last year’s Council. The first group would be responsible for the collection of the necessary data, the second group would be responsible for brainstorming ways to assess and use the information gathered. Good news was presented by the Treasurer that the last payment to Troutman Sanders for the litigation had been paid
In summary let me assure you that the members of the Executive Board take their responsibilities seriously and are a dedicated group of individuals. The members are as follows:
Class of 2015
The Rev. Tuck Bowerfind, Region VI
Ms. Karen Grane, Region IV
The Rev. Peter Ackerman, Region VII
Ms. Cindy McLaughlin, Region III
The Rev. Linda Wofford Hawkins, Region VIII
Ms. Pat Hardy, ECW President 2015
Class of 2016
The Rev. Carmen Germino, Region X
Mr. Stephen Wachenfeld, Region XV
The Rev. Amelie Wilmer, Region XI
Ms. Mary Frances LeMat, Region XIII
The Rev. Jennifer [Jen] Kimball, Region II
Class of 2017
The Rev. Paul Rowles, Region IX
Mr. Tom Crockett, Region XII
The Rev. Stephen Edmondson, Region V
Mr. Tom Dunning, Region XIV
The Rev. Jay Morris, Region I
The Class of 2015 rotates off of the Board after this Council. So to Cindy, Karen, Tuck, Peter, Linda, and Pat, thank you for your dedicated service to the Diocese of Virginia. We will miss your camaraderie, your fellowship, your intelligence, your friendship, and your leadership over these past three years of service.
There is one more individual that needs to be recognized, and that is Bill Martin, the Coordinator of the Executive Board. Without his direction, getting us the right paperwork guidance, set ups, sense of humor, great sense of organization, and of course ordering us lunch, we would all be adrift at our meetings.
Mr. Stephen Wachenfeld, Vice President
Committee on Mission and Outreach
General. The Committee on Mission and Outreach is organized to encourage the national and international mission efforts of parishes throughout the Diocese of Virginia. The Committee issues grants for mission trips, develops training materials, organizes informational meetings and conferences and makes mission-related resources available to parishes throughout the Diocese.
Grants. The Committee on Mission and Outreach issued the following grants during the year 2014:
|ECW – Melinda Fitzgerald||Congo||$250|
|Church of our Saviour, Charlottesville||Youth Works, NY||$500|
|Calvary, Front Royal||Rosebud Res., South Dakota||$500|
|Immanuel Old Church, Mechanicsville||Honduras||$500|
|Pohick, Lorton||Youth Works, NY||$500|
|St. Alban’s, Annandale||Hurley, VA||$500|
|St. George’s, Fredericksburg||Pine Ridge Res. S. Dakota||$500|
|St. James’, Leesburg||Costa Rica||$500|
|St. James-the-Less, Ashland||Cherokee, NC||$500|
|St. Mark’s, Alexandria||Rosebud Res., South Dakota||$500|
|St. Mary’s, Arlington||Tanzania||$500|
|St. Paul’s, Ivy||Tanzania||$500|
|St. Peter’s, Purcellville||Liberia||$500|
|Home for Humanity, Inc.||Sudan||$500|
|Five Talents International||International||$500|
|Dominican Development Group||Dominican Republic||$1,000|
Missioners from the Diocese of Virginia – Young Adult Service Corps
Judy Crosby Tanzania $1,000
Justin Davis Hong Kong $1,000
Total grants given in 2014 - $13,500
The committee is comprised of five members with two additional consultants who assist in reviewing material. There are 24 certified trainers for Prevention of Child Sexual Abuse workshops and 19 trainers certified to conduct Prevention of Adult Sexual Abuse workshops. The committee and trainers meet annually to discuss training issues and program materials. In 2014 there was no meeting because of the transition of leadership from the Rev. Cathy Tibbetts to Carolyn Voldrich. A meeting is scheduled on March 7.
Oversight of all programs and liaison to Bishop Johnston is done by the canon to the ordinary, the Rev. Canon Patrick Wingo. Diocesan support staff includes Ed Keithly, staff liaison, and Kathlyn Jones, registrar.
In 2014, there were 45 abuse prevention workshops held throughout the Diocese, scheduled independently by trainers and on request. Clergy are now eligible to hold abbreviated workshops for their own parishes, and so various trainings also took place in this manner. Online training is also available for those who need to renew certificates after 10 years and for those approved by their clergy. There are 80 parishes that are taking advantage of online training.
The focus of the committee is to provide easily accessible training for all those who need and want it for their ministry. Online training has been well received and is increasingly filling the need to engage more ministry leaders in being able to access the training the DOV requires. This feedback may indicate that the DOV's decision to expand training resources via use of online training as an adjunct to the DOV's ongoing and preferred face-to-face method, has been both welcomed within the Diocese and is showing promise in helping churches achieve greater success with prevention training.
Committee members and trainers are dedicated and committed to this important ministry, and they spend countless hours on preparing and conducting workshops. Looking ahead, the committee will continue to review policies and materials with the intent to streamline and standardize training.
Submitted by: Ms. Carolyn Voldrich, Chair
PYM (Parish Youth Ministries) is a committee composed of high school students from across the Diocese. It is the only committee in the Diocese of Virginia that is made up entirely of youth. The members of the group, which ranges from 30-35 members, are the leaders in a series of weekend and day events held throughout the school year.
Annually, PYM hosts three large events at Shrine Mont: 6th- & 7th-Grade Weekend, 8th-Grade Weekend and Senior High Weekend. There are also several one-day events held at various locations across the Diocese such as the Fall and Spring Day of Service. The main objective of these events is to promote opportunities for fellowship and spiritual growth for the youth in our Diocese through music, arts and crafts, games, bible study, small group discussion, initiative exercises and prayer. The group also spends two weekends a year in retreat for planning and leadership training, and on months where there is not an event the committee meets in Fredericksburg to evaluate the program offerings and plan for future events. A selection of the committee serves as pages at Annual Council.
The PYM Committee elects their two co-chairs. For the 2014-2015 school year, the co-chairs are Michael Hamilton and Greer Bateman. The diocesan liaison is Michael Wade.
Submitted by: Mr. Michael Wade, Staff Liaison
The Committee on Race and Reconciliation of The Diocese of Virginia embraces the responsibility to:
- Develop and implement programs and strategies that affirm our baptismal covenant;
- Engage and lead conversations across the Diocese about race and racism in a safe, prayer - and faith-filled context.
Highlights of 2014
- At Annual Council in January, the Committee sponsored a successful resolution requesting that the Bishop appoint a task force to consider whether to suggest a change in the name of the annual gathering of the Diocese from “council” to “convention.”
- The Committee held several meetings with Buck Blanchard, their liaison with the Diocesan staff and Ed Jones, secretary of the Diocese, to provide support to the Task Force and it’s work. Maurice Spraggins was appointed a task force member.
- As the work of the Task Force progressed, several members of the committee supported the work, especially providing additional, expert research services.
- In April, Co-Chair Ellyn attended the Province III Synod in Martinsburg, West Virginia. During this gathering she participated in a meeting of the Province’s Anti-Racism Commission.
- In August the Committee participated in a retreat lead by the Rev. Canon Angela Shepherd of the Diocese of Maryland. The discernment and study that took place resulted in plans that have been offered to assist in diversifying the pool of candidates when vacancies occur on the Diocesan. Additional goals were adopted to ensure that the Diocese’s message of its commitment to reconciliation and inclusion would be spread beyond Virginia’s borders.
- The Committee expressed support for the Diocese of Rhode Island’s intent to restore its cathedral in Providence as a museum and Center for Reconciliation. As a result of its contribution to the effort the Committee hopes to signal its interest in building a relationship grounded in this common ministry.
- Throughout the year Committee members Julia Randle, archivist for the Diocese, and John Chilton, have continued to author articles for the Virginian Episcopalian. Their extensive research of records and publications and documents from this Diocese and other dioceses throughout the wider church has offered a provided a meticulous examination of the Diocese of Virginia and the Civil War and the resulting practices and attitudes that challenge our efforts to heal. Their work has been and will continue to be invaluable as we assist the Diocese in finding ways to face and overcome the daunting obstacles to achieving social justice. The documenting and exploration of our history in this manner has provided invaluable insight into our past and helps to light our path forward.
- Information about the Committee's activities and focus may be found at our website: http://sites.google.com/site/dovracerelations/
Looking ahead to 2015, the Committee plans to assist with the Bishop’s initiative to provide opportunities for people around the Diocese to listen and exchange views about race, reconciliation and social justice.
We ask your prayers for our ministry.
Submitted by: Ms. Ellyn Lomack Crawford, Co-Chair and The Rev. J. David Niemeyer, Co-Chair
During the 219th Annual Council of the Diocese of Virginia (DVA), Resolution R2-a was submitted by the Committee on Race and Reconciliation (the “Committee”) for consideration by the assembled body. This resolution called for the appointment of a Task Force (the “Task Force”) to be charged with an examination of whether to change the name of the DVA’s annual meeting from “Council” to “Convention.” That resolution was adopted.
Shrine Mont hosted over 11,000 guests and over 700 campers and 100 staff during the 2013 season.
Some highlights from this year include:
- Bishop Goff joined us in celebrating the 89th anniversary of the consecration of the Cathedral Shrine of the Transfiguration on August 6.
- 90 parishes from the Diocese held parish retreats, youth retreats, 20s and 30s retreats, men’s retreats, women’s retreats, and confirmation retreats
- Over 380 Diocese of Virginia middle and high school students participated in Parish Youth Ministry weekend.
- Bishop Shannon hosted the Annual Spring Conference for Clergy, Lay Professionals and their Spouses and the Annual Fall Clergy Retreat.
- 125 volunteers attended our Annual Work Weekend providing Shrine Mont an invaluable service in preparing to open for the season.
- 20 parishes from outside the Diocese held retreats at Shrine Mont.
- Shrine Mont hosted the following programs: Women’s Retreat, Writing Retreat, Painting Workshop, Arranging for the Joy of It, Walking the Labyrinth Retreat, and two Digital Photography Workshops.
- Bishop Shannon hosted the annual Bishop’s Jubilee and Bluegrass Festival July 4-6.
- The Gourmet Dinner and Wine Tasting sold out and was a success at raising funds for Shrine Mont.
- 60+ golfers joined Bishop Jones for the Tee with the Bishop Golf Tournament, which raised in excess of $16,000 for Shrine Mont.
- St. Stephen’s & St. Agnes cross country team came to Shrine Mont for pre-season training. St. Stephens & St. Agnes also brought their senior class for its annual retreat.
- The Shenandoah Valley Music Festival held its 52nd season and more than a dozen arts groups met for workshops and retreats.
- The marching bands from Oakton, Thomas Jefferson and Fairfax high schools returned for their annual band camps in August.
- The Shenandoah County Historical Society held its annual Heritage Day.
- Community partnerships included the West Shenandoah Ruritan Club, the Bryce Mountain Lions Club, and the Shenandoah County Sheriff’s Department Leadership Camp. Shrine Mont also hosted the Broadway High School Football team
Shrine Mont added new parish retreats and events to our calendar including:
- St. John’s, Tappahannock, Abingdon Parish and St. Paul’s, Haymarket, started holding their annual retreats, The Blue Ridge Art League, Environmental Defense Fund and Best Value Technologies came to Shrine Mont for the first time. Four new families came to Shrine Mont for reunions in 2014.
- Numerous women’s, creative art and personal retreats.
- The Cathedral Shrine hosted four weddings and five baptismal services.
At the Bishop’s Jubilee The Rt. Rev. Shannon Johnston announced the official launch of the Shout It from the Mountain campaign to fund improvements and additions to the fifty year old Shrine Mont Camp facilities, an create an endowment for the ongoing care of those facilities and an endowment at the Diocese of Virginia called the More to the Mountain Fund that will provide financial assistance to needy campers and families ensuring that the Shine Mont camps will reflect the diversity of the Diocese of Virginia. The campaign goal is $2million with a stretch goal of $2.5 million. At the time of the launch more than $1.2 million had been pledged or given. As of this report’s writing, more than $1.7 million has been raised.
Shrine Mont continues to improve our facilities.
In 2014 Shrine Mont made the following improvements
- The old swimming pool behind the lower pond was filled in. This pool had been decommissioned 10 years ago when the new pool was opened. The new green space will be another field for Shrine Mont guests to enjoy.
- The exterior railings on the second and third floors of the Virginia House were replaced with new larger railings.
- The floor of the new swimming pool was replaced.
During the 2014/15 offseason we will undertake the following projects in addition to the normal repairs and upkeep of the property and its 85 buildings.
- Fireplace improvements are continuing in the cottages
- Upgrades are being made to the Tucker Hall complex including
- a new dishwasher
- new tables in the first dining room
- renovating the bathroom in Art Hall
- Upgrading the Bird Cage
- The old pool area below Crenshaw Lodge will be enhanced with a sitting and gathering area
Two longtime members of the Shrine Mont board of directors stepped down at the end of 2014. We are deeply grateful to Fred Forstall and Joan Albiston for their hard work and dedication to Shrine Mont and their continued support of the work we do. In 2014 Shrine Mont welcomed Mary Beth Abplanalp of St. James’s, Richmond; John Carten of Grace Community Church, Arlington; Mitzi van der Veer of St. Paul’s, Richmond; and Jan Meredith of St. George’s, Fredericksburg to our Board of Directors
Shrine Mont would like to thank the Shrine Mont Board of Directors, the diocesan staff, and all of our guests and donors for their hard work and efforts to continue to make Shrine Mont ”A place apart.”
We are looking forward to another great season in 2015 and hope that every member of the Diocese will spend some time with us.
Submitted by: Mr. Kevin Moomaw, Executive Director
As the 2014 President of the Standing Committee of the Diocese of Virginia, it gives me great pleasure and pride in our Diocese to report to you regarding the business of the Standing Committee and our ministry together for the past year.
If I were to choose adjectives to describe the Standing Committee's work this year and especially it's time with Bishop Johnston, those words would be joyful, celebratory, reconciling and renewing. We and the Bishop were blessed with a vast majority of very positive and non-controversial issues as we together considered stretching his leadership and ministry, and our ministry with him, in our Diocese, the larger Episcopal Church, the Anglican Communion and the world. Bishop Johnston's leadership in stretching ourselves beyond our traditional duties and comfort zones was encouraging and impactful on our deliberations as a committee, but also in our time spent with postulants seeking candidacy for the priesthood and later ordination, in our work with parishes seeking consent to incur debt, and with other groups, such as a number of our members participating in the retreat of the Commission on Ministry.
We were stretched as individuals and as a committee as we met with Canon Pat Wingo, the Rev. Leslie Hague, president of the Committee on the Priesthood, and Ed Keithly, vocational officer, and conferred over issues regarding the process of formation of a priest or a vocational deacon from discernment through ordination, and the Standing Committee's role in that process.
We were joyful as we talked with Bishop Johnston and Ed Jones, reflecting on last year's exciting changes in the format of Council, and how this next council and those in the future can be made less expensive and available to a larger number of the members of our congregations as observers and participants in workshops etc. We have reflected together on how increasing the time spent in each parish during a bishop's visitation could be accomplished throughout the Diocese, and what changes have and should occur in the structure of the staff at Mayo House.
Consulting with Bishop Johnston while the Archbishop of Canterbury has called on him time and again to model, share and consult about his work in the area of church reconciliation within the Anglican Communion, both at home and abroad, was thrilling and infectious. A couple of members of the Standing Committee have joined the group of Diocese of Virginia and Truro Church ACNA members to explore areas of reconciliation right here at home. And members of the Standing Committee have reached out beyond our boundaries to the Diocese of South Carolina to preach and otherwise share our diocese's experience in rebuilding our continuing congregations in the midst of litigation, painful change and the destruction of beloved traditions. They have celebrated the renewed strength of those congregations as they feel God's support and that of other Episcopalians from afar. Another member of the Standing Committee answered an invitation from a North Carolina Tri County group known as Organization Against Racism and traveled to Durham, N.C., and participated in a three day conference sharing her experience and skills in the area of encouraging and teaching racial sensitivity and true reconciliation. One of our members has participated with the Stewardship of Creation Committee with their design of materials and websites and a conference to encourage parishes and individuals to "meet the challenge" to change and become better stewards of God's creation. He has joined in challenging us at the 220th Council to stretch beyond our normal activities by writing a resolution regarding protecting and saving our creation from global warming and other dangers to which we unwittingly contribute. Three of our members and their parishes were inspired and stretched by the leadership of one of our Vocational Deacons to reach out to other ECW members in the Diocese of Southern Virginia and to other non-profits and community groups to work together to stretch our work for women and girls to the Diocese of Bukavu in the Democratic Republic of the Congo and provide needed medical equipment, permanent clean water sources and scholarships for the training of nurses.
The good news is that stretching in our awareness and reaching out to others beyond our neighborhoods and diocese, only energized our canonical work such as that of serving as liaisons to churches requesting to incur certain large debt. Each church making such consent to incur debt requests, receives at least one visit from its liaison to see the project for which the debt is to be incurred, reviews with that liaison the necessary proof of supporting vestry actions, financial documents and plans for payment of the debt. When all is in order, the liaison schedules a presentation to the Standing Committee by the leadership of the church to explain how it's new building or programming project or refinancing will cause them to incur new debt, and how they are reasonably able to pay the debt while keeping the church financially stable. In 2014 the Standing Committee has entertained requests from three churches, Aquia, Buck Mountain, and St. Johns, Centerville and granted the request to incur new debt to all three.
Your Standing Committee is asked to consider requests for its consent for other Dioceses to hold elections of new Bishops and to consent to the election of particular persons as a Bishop by a diocese. In 2014 we consented to the following: the holding of an election for a bishop coadjutor and to the election of Bishop Coadjutor David Mitchell Reed by the Diocese of West Texas; the holding of an election of a bishop coadjutor by the Diocese of the Dominican Republic; the election of Bishop Diocesan Alan M. Gates by the Diocese of Massachusetts; the election of Bishop Suffragan Heather Elizabeth Cook by the Diocese of Maryland; the election of Bishop Coadjutor Brian Richard Seage by the Diocese of Mississippi; and the election of Bishop Diocesan Robert Stuart Skirving by the Diocese of East Carolina
Some of the Standing Committee's most rewarding work, that of being a part of a postulate's journey of formation in preparation for the priesthood, begins with our reading many documents by and about postulants of our diocese, then meeting with and getting to know these exciting, talented, and extremely dedicated persons as they proceed along the road to ordination as vocational deacons or as priests. In 2014 we interviewed 10 such postulants and voted to approve the admittance of each one by the Bishop as candidates for ordination.
Farther along in the formation process we are asked to review certificates of preparedness and the meeting of canonical requirements necessary for ordination to the transitional deaconate, and in 2014 we have conducted such reviews and recommended eight candidates to the Bishop for ordination as transitional deacons, and proudly and joyfully recommended 10 transitional deacons to be ordained to the priesthood. In 2014, one or more committee members have participated in as presenters and attended in celebration four ordinations throughout the Diocese. The name of each accepted candidate for ordination and each ordained deacon or priest is listed in the Actions of the Standing Committee which will be included in the Journal of this 220th Council.
As hard as it was to say goodbye to Mike Kerr as treasurer of the diocese, it was a great pleasure to approve the Bishop's selection of the Diocese's new Treasurer Edward A. "Ted" Smith IV as the new diocesan treasurer. The staff at Mayo House could not be more helpful when we bring problems to them, nor more professional, innovative and energetic in helping to find a solution. Each time I see them organize and carry out an event, plan and trouble shoot a huge meeting like Council, or come to a parish and assist in searching for a new rector or respond to an earthquake, I am more impressed and thankful for and to them.
Again let me say how fortunate and thankful each member of the Standing Committee has been to work with and be in counsel with Bishop Shannon in such a harmonious year in the Diocese. We have felt abundantly fortunate to stretch toward new horizons in dynamic planning for our diocese in areas of growth in reconciliation and in extended areas of outreach as we stretch farther toward the work to which God invites us.
We thank the members leaving the Standing Committee at the end of this Council, the Rev. Lucia Lloyd, Ms. Mareea Wilson, and the Rev. Sven vanBaars, for their tireless effort and invaluable contributions to this ministry.
Submitted by: The Hon. Jane P. Delbridge, President
Since its formation in 1992, pursuant to a resolution of the 1991 General Convention, the Stewardship of Creation Committee (SoCC) has endeavored to help parishes identify and implement means to become better stewards of God’s creation. The Committee aims to serve: (a) as a resource for access to theological and liturgical resources regarding faith and environmental stewardship, (b) as a portal for access to technical information on conservation of energy, water, and other measures important for stewardship of creation, and (c) as a venue for dialogue on issues of faith and environmental concern.
“Meeting the challenge to change” has been the guiding theme for the Committee’s endeavors of during the 2014 calendar year. With significant leadership from Lorne Field, a new member, the Committee developed a tiered “tool kit” to help churches direct limited resources along lines that can optimize financial and environmental benefits. The toolkit is on the SoCC website.
More generally, the Committee restructured its website, caringforgodscreation.net, to improve visibility and accessibility of its resources. We also began to explore potential for deeper engagement of architectural, landscaping and engineering professional societies in pro bono efforts to support churches with limited financial means – not just Episcopal churches in the Diocese – become better stewards of creation. As no-cost resources have come to attention, these have been publicized in the Committee’s weekly eBlasts. During 2015, the Committee will be examining strategies to enhance and leverage these initiatives to strengthen churches. The goal will be to implement at least one project in a church in the Diocese.
In September 2014, the Committee sponsored a morning conference and afternoon workshop on The Episcopal Church and Earth Care. The keynote speaker at the conference was Willis Jenkins, Associate Professor of Religion, Ethics, and Environment at the University of Virginia, who spoke on Climate Change as an Ethical Challenge: Religious Creativity and Empowerment for Change. A podcast of his remarks has been available through the Diocese since the Conference.
As one step in following through on issues surfacing during recent conferences and the Presiding Bishop’s recent pastoral message on climate change, the Committee has drafted a resolution for the 220th Annual Council of the Diocese. If adopted, the resolution will furnish support and a framework for advocacy on behalf of the Diocese by the Committee, churches, and individual Episcopalians.
During 2014, the Committee migrated its mailing list for eBlasts to a Web-based mail server, MailChimp.com. Committee mailings now reach roughly 300 addressees weekly, and the list is continuing to add subscribers. SoCC mailings and other posts may now also be followed on Twitter, @SoCCVirginia, hashtag #FaithEarthVa. The Committee also maintains a presence on Facebook.
The themes for the 2015 conference sponsored by the Committee will revisit concerns surfacing in its recent conferences, but in a different format. A food and agriculture program at the Roslyn Center on Friday, September 25, will explore food issues from dietary and spiritual perspectives. A program the following day, Saturday, September 26, also at the Roslyn Center, will additionally explore and reflect upon energy and water issues in light of developments since those topics were last explored in Committee conferences. Both components of the 2015 program will address the practical implications and the spiritual challenges in meeting the challenge to change.
Pursuant to a resolution of the 2011 Diocesan Council, the Committee has continued to enroll “Parish Stewardship Partners.‟ To enroll a Parish Stewardship Partner for your church or for other information, please contact the Committee, email@example.com.
Submitted by: Mr. Tal Day, Chair
We are pleased to report that 2014 was another busy year for Roslyn. We accommodated nearly 300 groups, served more than 30,000 meals, hosted complimentary clergy retreats and served our Easter Brunch to another record breaking crowd. Revenue for the year was the highest it has ever been.
During the year, the Memorial Trustees moved management of their investments from Mangham Associates to the Trustees of the Funds. Working with another diocesan entity made this a very compelling move and the Memorial Trustees are looking forward to working with the Trustees of the Funds to manage Roslyn’s endowment.
The exteriors of the Dining Hall and Powers Hall were painted, as was the interior meeting space of lower Gibson Hall. A new roof was put on the Pavilion and the Dining Hall’s carpet was replaced with a hardwood floor.
A promotional video of Roslyn was created and can be viewed on our website and on YouTube. In addition to Facebook, we expanded our social media circle to include Twitter and Pinterest.
We also upgraded and enhanced Roslyn’s technology to meet the growing needs of our groups and guests. Verizon FIOS is now available in all of Roslyn’s meeting spaces with cable television and conference calling services available in Walker Hall, Gibson Hall and Powers Hall. The wireless internet service was also updated throughout the property.
Looking to 2015, the Memorial Trustees and the Roslyn Managers Corporation will work closely with the Bishop’s office to create a business plan that will advance Bishop Johnston’s vision of Roslyn serving as a center for spiritual direction and discernment for clergy and laity. We have made strides in this direction by offering complimentary clergy retreats, led by a spiritual director, to active and retired diocesan clergy and their spouses. The Bishop’s office has also brought a spiritual advisor to Roslyn several times throughout the year to meet individually with diocesan clergy. We are excited about expanding this initiative.
We are pleased to announce a new program that will be offered this spring at Roslyn. Led by Bishop Goff, “Art Day with Bishop Susan” will offer participants the opportunity to reflect on the first Genesis creation story in Bible study, in conversation and in creating art with found objects.
Capital improvements will continue this year as we plan to repair and recoat the driveway and parking lots. We will also paint the exterior of the chapel and begin cosmetic renovations to the Ross and Hall lodges.
The board and staff at Roslyn look forward to continued growth in 2015. We are thankful to all of our groups, organizations and donors as they have made Roslyn what it is today.
Submitted by: Ms. Kass Lawrence, Chair