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July 25 Bishop’s Report to Diocesan Council

(1) The following congregations are in some phase of transition (mostly with respect to calling new clergy leadership): St. James, Arlington, currently served by Supply Clergy; St. Thomas & Grace, Brandon, Interim Team, with the Rev. Paul Gratz as Team Leader; St. Paul’s Burlington, the Rev. Laura Bryant, Interim Rector; St. Andrew’s, Colchester, the Rev. Robert Leopold, Interim; St. Luke’s, Fair Haven, Local Ministry Support Team in Formation, the Rev. Richard Brewer, Regular Supply; Christ Church, Island Pond: Supply Clergy; St. Peter’s, Lyndonville: Supply Clergy; Saint Stephen’s, Middlebury, Interim Ministry Team in place with the Rev. Carole Wageman as Team Leader; Saint Mark’s, Newport: Local Clergy and other Supply; Gethsemane, Proctorsville: Supply Clergy; Saint John’s, Randolph: The Rev. Angela Emerson, Interim; Saint Luke’s, St. Albans: Supply Clergy, with some regular support from the Rev. Craig Smith; Saint Andrew’s, St. Johnsbury: Supply Clergy; St. Mark’s, Springfield: The Rev. Martha Dyner and the Rev. Todd McKee as regular Supply Clergy; St. Dunstan’s, Waitsfield, Supply clergy; St. Paul’s Windsor, Supply Clergy; St. Mary’s, Wilmington: The Rev. Nicholas Porter, Interim; Saint James, Woodstock: the Rev. Lisa Ransom, Interim.

(2) With the endorsement form the Commission on Ministry, I have made the following persons Postulants for Holy Orders: Lars Hunter (Deacon), Darcey Mercier (Priest).

(3) Starting July 1, I moved into part-time working mode. It is a challenge, but I am trying to do my best to honor this time and our arrangement.

(4) On July 11, I spent several hours with the Standing Committee talking about the past 18 years of ministry and what I’ve learned, appreciated and think has been accomplished during the years of my episcopacy. It was a mutual conversation set in the context of the Holy Eucharist. I remain very grateful for the faithful work of our Standing Committee, especially during this continuing time of Transition.

(5) Ann and I were once again deeply moved and honored by the Service of Taizé evening prayer Evensong on June 29 at Saint Michael’s, Brattleboro, and the lovely reception that followed. We received many very special gifts and expression of thanksgiving celebrating the past 18 years of ministry together. For all of that and so much more we are deeply grateful. Please read this letter if you have not already done so. It is our attempt to put into words what these celebrations have meant to us and to say thank you for the depth and expression of your love and appreciation: https://diovermont.org/2019/07/15/a-letter-of-gratitude-from-bishop-tom-ann-ely/

(6) Starting July 18 and ending July 25, I have been spending part of each day with the young adults at the Jerusalem Peacebuilders Leadership Camp at Acer Farm in Brattleboro. Here I lead sessions on the Dignity model and participate with the young adults in their learning related to religion, leadership, the Israeli/Palestinian conflict, peacebuilding, conflict resolution, and more. These 19 young adult leaders, and the amazing staff from JPB, are a remarkable group of Jews, Muslims and Christians and it has been my joy and privilege to share in this work with them.

(7) I have been working with the Rock Point Board in the process of discernment and calling of the first Executive Director for Rock Point Commons, which we hope will be completed by the end of September. We have some outstanding candidates.

(8) I continue to participate as needed and called upon to assist in the transition process of welcoming and orienting Bishop-elect Shannon. I am most grateful for the faithful and diligent work of the Transition Committee and those they have engaged to help plan and lead us through this time of episcopal leadership transition.

(9) Visitations since our last Council meeting included Sunday visitations with Saint John’s, Essex New York on June 30 and Saint James’, Arlington on July 7.

(10) I’ve taken some short blocks of vacation time focused on family, since our last meeting, and will continue to do so through August.

(11) Ann and I are continuing to unpack and settle into our home in Newfane. I think we may be at this for a while!

Faithfully,

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