Transcript of Bishop Goff's Remarks for Clergy Call July 14

Clergy Webinar Week 18 - July 14, 2020

Bishop Goff opened with a Prayer Written by the Rev. Jan Berry of Luther King House in Manchester, England.  Slightly adapted.

God our refuge, we seek your protection.
Protect the vulnerable from illness:
Those who are old and frail, weakened by years and struggle; those who care for others, expending energy and love; those for whom inability to work means hardship and poverty. 

Protect us from the greed and suspicion which snatches at our own security, stock-piling and panic-buying that deprives others of the necessities of life.

Protect us from the shortsightedness which sees the germ in our own eyes and ignores the plagues of hunger, war, violence, racism and white supremacy that take so many lives each day.

Protect us from the isolation that leads to loneliness and despair, denying the interconnectedness that links us with one another.

God our refuge, in our panic and fear may we not lose sight of our common humanity that makes us one people in you.  Amen. 

We will spend the bulk of our hour together focusing on Racial Justice and Healing, with four stories from around the diocese.

Before we begin those stories, I offer one update. 

The question of when and how we might share Eucharist is close to the hearts of many of us, particularly as this time of fasting from the sacrament continues.  We are working actively and intentionally on this. 

The House of Bishops meets virtually later this month to engage together our Eucharistic theology and practice.  We anticipate that a written word to the church will come out of that meeting. 

Soon after that, a written word to the Diocese of Virginia will come from the three bishops now actively serving this Diocese.   Bishop Porter Taylor is taking the lead in this work.  He has spoken with a number of liturgists and sacramental theologians from across the church.  A small team of clergy of the Diocese will work with him as a short-term task force.  I anticipate that we will develop practices that take into account the differences in sizes of congregations, geography and architecture, all the while honoring our Eucharistic theology, our commitment to oneness in Christ in community, our tradition and our rubrics.  You will hear much more about this at the end of this month. 

Our focus today is Racial Justice and Healing - stories from around the diocese.  Clergy or lay leaders from four congregations will present ministries in which they are engaged.

I thank Aisha Huertas, staff minister for Missional Engagement, for organizing these presentations. 

  • The Rev. Kim Coleman, Trinity, Arlington, will speak about the congregation’s experience with Sacred Ground.
  • The Rev. Charlie Dupree of St. Paul’s, Richmond, will share with us recent events and decisions made by the congregation that worships just across the street from the Virginia State Capitol.
  • Ms. Ellyn Crawford of St. George’s, Arlington, will tell us about the virtual Juneteenth conference of earlier this month.
  • The Rev. Weston Matthews of Grace, The Plains, will speak about the intersection between environmental justice and racial justice and the work to end construction of the East Coast Pipeline.

Click here for resources referenced and Q & A.