In December, I spoke at an Interfaith Prayer Vigil in Burlington called, "A Moral Call: People of faith confronting the tragedy of gun violence." I asked the question, "how do we become our best self as a country in the midst of this current epidemic of gun violence?"
I believe the answer begins by setting in motion a "spiral of peace" in our hearts and in our homes, and it starts now as we actively pursue all efforts to be instruments of God's peace. It moves outward from there, circling family, neighbors, and our world community in compassion, education, awareness, and action, so that one day the vision offered by the prophet Isaiah when speaking about a restored Jerusalem might actually come to pass in our world; "Violence shall no more be heard in your land, wasting nor destruction within your borders; but you shall call your walls Salvation, and your gates Praise."
15-year-old Hadiya Pendleton was shot and killed in Chicago in 2013. Hadiya's friends honor her every year on her birthday (June 2) by wearing orange, the color hunters wear to keep themselves safe. Wear Orange was created to make it easier for people to show their support for common sense solutions that will save lives. If you believe there's more we can do to help end gun violence, I invite you to join me and my colleagues in Bishops United Against Gun Violence on June 2 and #WearOrange.
Members of the clergy are invited to consider joining the movement to wear an orange stole onSunday, June 5. For more ideas visit the Wear Orange website.
Two hikers. Three weeks. 273 Miles. A quest to raise $10,000 for a scholarship fund for a at-risk youth pursuing post-secondary education. Tim Heath-Swanson and the Rev. Rick Swanson will hike Vermont’s Long Trail in September. They plan to lace up their hiking books and raise $10,000 to create a scholarship fund for Laraway Youth & Family Services’ clients who are pursuing continuing education in the trades and technical fields.
“Laraway students have untapped skills and gifts for life,” says Swanson, who serves as rector at St. John's in the Mountains, Stowe. “The Trailblazer Fund will provide a path forward into their future." Laraway Youth & Family Services provides therapeutic foster care, operates an alternative school, offers clinical services and directs a public school based behavioral intervention program. Laraway is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit. Donations to the fund are tax-deductible.
Trail Angel: 10 cents per mile = $27.20
Day Hiker: 15 cents per mile = $40.80
Section Leader: 20 cents per mile = $54.40
Thru Hiker: 50 cents per mile = $136.00
The third Annual Rock Point Intentional Community Retreat will be offered from 5 pm Friday, June 10, 2016 through 4 pm Saturday, June 11, 2016. This year we’ll be exploring some of the ways to create holistic “gardens” in our lives, using the beauty and spirituality of Rock Point to experience body, mind and spirit spiritual practices through which we can express RPIC’s rule of life. These will include Qigong as grace before meals, Tai Chi in the outdoor chapel, Anglican prayer beads, contemplative prayer and two pilgrimage walks around Rock Point. As always with our retreats, you may stay overnight or commute. Costs, including all meals, are overnight $120 double occupancy and $150 single occupancy; commuter $85. Late registration, after June 1st, will incur an additional $15 charge.
Rev. Thora Chadwick will preside at the 6 pm Eucharist on Friday, since this is RPIC’s regularly scheduled summer second Friday service. Dinner will follow the Eucharist. The sessions on Friday evening and Saturday will be led by RPIC Members, framed by Morning Prayer, breakfast, lunch and Afternoon Prayer. Sessions will be arranged with mobility challenged folks in mind!
You can complete a registration form here: https://form.jotform.com/61323840234952
I am a member of the Cathedral Church of St. Paul, Burlington and a member of the vestry with leadership responsibility for formation. I am now also the formation representative for the Episcopal Church in Vermont for Province 1. This involves being part of a network to share ideas, solve problems and to grow and support formation in all of our congregations. It is an exciting group that has met via web conference twice this spring under the leadership of the executive director, Julie Lytle, PhD.
Last week, our brilliant Communications Minister, Kathleen Moore, sent out a social media blitz announcing the 15th anniversary of my ordination and consecration as Bishop of Vermont. The response was amazing, overwhelming and humbling. I would need 15 more years just to express gratitude to each of you who sent greetings and to the many more who offered prayers on April 28th. My email inbox was flooded. The post on Facebook reached 3,000 people. And, my twitter feed was all abuzz. From the depths of my heart and soul, please accept this “social media” expression of my gratitude. These past fifteen years have been among the most challenging and rewarding of my ordained ministry. It has been, and continues to be my great joy and privilege to serve among such fabulous and faithful people. Thank you for you trust, confidence and partnership. Onward!
Vermont's eight facilitators for Honoring Our Relationships, Building a Safe Church Community, met at St. John's Church in Randolph last month. Members of this group facilitate trainings throughout the diocese and meet annually with Canon Lynn Bates to review their work and renew their ministries. Fellowship, education, and planning for the future are the basis of these gatherings. The day included reflection on personal ministries, Bible study, celebrations and discussion of how this work impacts our ministry as individuals and as the Episcopal Church in Vermont. Anti-Racism Training in Vermont and future plans for that ministry were presented by the Rev. Peggy Mathauer.
Safe Church Facilitators are: Stan Baker, Anne Brown, Janet Brown, Janet Cramer, Paul Gratz, Peggy Mathauer, Jean Townsend, and Kathryn Wright.
The following is a reflection from Jane Lee Wolfe, St. James, Woodstock parishioner and Director of Bog Chapel, Inc. an educational not-for-profit organization that focuses on the spiritual health and spiritual fitness of human beings, from youth through old age.
Forty-something years ago I ran children’s chapel at my parish. It was nothing I wanted to do, but the boss asked me. “It’s not in my job description,” I said like a fine bureaucrat. Whereupon I got that lecture we all get from parents and teachers about how there are some things we have to do that we don’t want to do, etc. etc. The most boring, predictable speech ever.
So Children’s Chapel it was, 3-5 year -olds. I decided I would do what I thought the children would respond to. We sang “Jesus Loves Me, This I Know” and “Thank you, Lord for this fine day” every Sunday. I had a piano player. One time it was the assistant organist at Riverside Church in New York, down home for a visit. I spotted him and grabbed him to play because my regular piano player was sick or something. Not there. I was frantic he wasn’t going to have time to practice. “What is the music?” he asked. “Jesus Loves me this I know.” and “Thank You, Lord, for this fine day.” “I think I can manage,” he said. And he did.
In addition to the hymns, we had one Bible lesson that was every Sunday. The same lesson. It was about Jesus healing 10 people with a skin disease and only one turning around to say thank you (Luke 17:11-19 in kid talk). How many said thank you? (Response) How many should have said thank you? (Response) Etc. Occasionally like at Christmas we’d switch stories, but mostly we stayed with the thank you story.
Thursday, May 5, 2016, Ascension Day | St. Martin's Episcopal Church | 5327 Lake Morey Road, Fairlee, VT 05045
Carolyn, Ann, and the leadership team
The "every congregation challenge" announced at last year's Diocesan Convention asked every parish to send a camper outside the congregation to Rock Point Summer Camp. The fulfillment of this challenge will mean that 48 new campers get to experience RPSC -- what a gift! St. Andrew's, Colchester and St. Luke's, Chester have already met the challenge by sponsoring two campers each. St. Luke's vestry member Kathryn Wright writes:
The vestry at St. Luke's, Chester was enthusiastic when they learned that Gay Jennings, President of the House of Deputies, had challenged us to sponsor a child from outside our parish to a week at Rock Point Summer Camp this year. We announced the challenge to the Sunday congregations and told them to spread the word to family, friends and neighbors. We talked about it at work and the grocery store and the library and spread the word at the local school and the Family Center. Our publicity paid off. We were contacted by a young mom who said that two of her three girls were eager to attend Rock Point, and that she'd heard we had scholarship money available. So we're sponsoring two sisters at the full future-investment rate, and couldn't be happier. The mom said they were looking for a spiritual home.
Other good news:
- Rock Point won $500 campership from the Vermont Camp Association, of which we are members.
- Day Camp II is almost full - Register here (all sessions) to reserve a space for your child.
- Check us out in April edition of KidsVT.com
Caring for Creation, Neighbor, Self...
... belong to a caring, cooperative community
... be a friend and make new friends
... enjoy daily cabin time
... experience the sacredness of creation
... explore the wilds of 146 acres on the shores of Lake Champlain
... grow in confidence, independence and interdependence
... try new activities and learn new skills
...and Have Fun!
Each week, high quality, well trained staff plan programs especially geared to each camper age group. Campers can help plan and lead activities, too.
|SESSIONS||AGE||2016 DATES||PRICE TIERS|
|Volunteer Work Week||18+years||June 20-24||FREE|
|Day Camp I||5-10 years||June 27-July1||$170/200/250|
|Senior High Camp||15-18 years||July 3-8||$420/460/560|
|Junior High Camp||11-15 years||July 10-15||$420/460/560|
|Elementary Camp||7-10 years||July 17-22||$420/460/560|
|Intermediate Camp||10-12 years||July 24-29||$420/460/560|
|Day Camp II||5-10 years||August 1-5||$170/200/250|
|Adult Camp||21+ yeras||August 7-11||$420/460/560|
Adult Camp - NEW!
Let your inner kid come out and play! Sunset from the Point. Stories around the campfire. Fall asleep to the sounds of Nature. Choose to join our talented staff for workshops, activities, hikes, games and canoe outings or simply relax by the lake with a good book or take a solitary stroll in the woods. Want to explore Burlington? It's a short walk or bike ride on the bike path. Go further afield? Head north to explore the Champlain Islands. The entire schedule is optional for participants. Live in cabins for listed registration fee or reserve a room in Bishop Booth Conference Center for additional charge.
Rock Point Summer Camp is in its 85th year.
We are a mission of The Episcopal Church in Vermont. We share in the vision of our Rock Point neighbors: To be a welcoming sanctuary of spirituality, creativity, community, education, training and environmental stewardship.
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