Bishop’s Report to Diocesan Council – December 17, 2016
Welcome new Council members. I do my best to offer a one page summary of key items in advance of each Council meeting. Here is my offering in advance of December 17th.
- The Standing Committee approved ordination to the Transitional Diaconate for Robert Wilson and Christine Mosely from Saint Mark’s, Newport, and for Paul Moberly from Saint Michael’s, Brattleboro. I will ordain Bob and Christine on December 18, 2016 at St. Mark’s. I will ordain Paul on January 7, 2017 at St. Michael’s.
- The following congregations are in transition (mostly with respect to calling new clergy leadership): St. James’, Arlington: The Reverend Christopher David, Interim; St. Thomas & Grace, Brandon, Supply Clergy; St. James’, Essex Junction: The Rev. Kim Hardy, Interim; Christ Church, Island Pond: Supply Clergy; St. Peter’s, Lyndonville: Supply Clergy; Saint Mark’s, Newport: The Rev. Jane Butterfield, Interim; Gethsemane, Proctorsville: Supply Clergy; Saint Luke’s, St. Albans: The Rev. Craig Smith, Sunday Supply and one day a week; Saint Andrew’s, St. Johnsbury: Supply Clergy; St. Mark’s, Springfield: The Reverend Betty Berlenbach and The Rev. Victor Horvath, Interim; Calvary, Underhill: Supply Clergy; St. Mary’s, Wilmington: The Rev. Nicholas Porter, Interim.
- The Jerusalem Gathering in Starksboro, VT, a Peculiar of the Diocese of Vermont for the past 22 years meeting every other Sunday for Eucharist, has decided it is time to bring this ministry to a close. I celebrated Advent II with them and their final liturgy will be on Christmas Eve. Look for a story about this unique worshipping community in a future edition of The Mountain.
- Diocesan Convention was a wonderful event and I’ve heard very good comments back from people about the program and hospitality from our Cathedral. There were a few things that could have gone better, but overall I think it was a great two days, with terrific turnout and participation for the program portion.
- The Rock Point Partnership Campaign continues to go well, albeit more slowly than I would like. Each week brings new financial commitments and a growing awareness of the importance of this effort. Council’s support in the form of the grant from the Patterson Estate has been gratefully received by the Rock Point Board. Work on the BBCC will begin in the Spring.
- The Diocesan Loan Review Committee approved the Council recommended loan to the Rock Point Board for the purchase of the Solar Installation. $165,000 for six years at 3% interest.
- The Episcopal Church in Vermont formally joined the new Vermont Ecumenical Council Network for Christian Cooperation. With that membership, all congregations are automatically members. A new website is being created and I will have more information to share about this at future Council meetings and in The Mountain.
- I’ve just completed the annual 4-day Advent Retreat with the Episcopal and Lutheran Bishops of New England. As always, this was a rich and refreshing time with colleagues. This year’s Retreat was led by associates from Bethany House of Prayer – http://www.bethanyhousearlington.org/
- My Sunday Visitations since our last Council meeting include Saint Mark’s, Newport, Saint Luke’s, Fair Haven, Saint Barnabas, Norwich, Saint Peter’s, Lyndonville, Gethsemane Church, Proctorsville, Jerusalem Gathering and Saint Mary’s, Northfield.
- Ann and I are taking great delight in the birth of our 3rd granddaughter, Madelyn Parker Ely, born on November 2nd. Here is a picture of her auditioning for the role of baby Jesus.