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News & Announcements

THRIVE Begins Work

When Bishop Shannon announced in July that the diocese faces a financial cliff, she appointed a task force of clergy and lay leaders to consider “how new models of ministry and new collaborative relationships might offer our diocese ways to discern our future.” The group, which named itself THRIVE (Taskforce for Hope, Revitalization, Innovation, Vision,

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A Message from the Diocesan Covid Response Team

Dear friends in Christ in the Episcopal churches in Vermont: As the COVID-19 case counts surge due to the delta variant, we write to you at this critical time to remind each of us of the important need to continue our best health and safety practices. We are fortunate in Vermont to have the highest

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Vermont’s First Black Sheriff to be Honored on October 3: Sheriff Stephen Bates, member of St. Paul’s, Vergennes

On October 3 at 11 a.m., Vermont’s first known elected Black sheriff and chief of police, Sheriff Stephen Bates, will be honored with the unveiling and dedication of an historic marker. Bates, a member of St. Paul’s, Vergennes, was first elected sheriff and chief of police in Vergennes in 1879, serving the city in those roles for

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Update from Bishop Shannon and the Diocesan Restart Team: Responding to the Delta Variant

Dear People of God in the Diocese of Vermont: In light of the recent rise in coronavirus cases in Vermont associated with the highly transmissible Delta variant, the Restart Team now recommends that parishes require face masks and social distancing indoors for all persons and groups using church buildings. This recommendation is consistent with the

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Building a Bridge to the Future: A Letter from Bishop Shannon

Dear People of God in the Diocese of Vermont: In 2018, the search committee for the 11th Bishop of Vermont wrote that in calling a full-time bishop, the diocese was taking a leap of faith “in the hopes that s/he would help us continue to discern and explore how God is speaking to us in

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A Letter from Paul Habersang, Executive Director of Rock Point Commons

With the COVID-19 pandemic beginning to recede across the United States and especially here in Vermont, we on Rock Point are grateful that we are beginning to return to some semblance of normalcy. That said, even though we may be returning to what feels like the “new normal,” so much has changed and that includes

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Releasing Congregations from Diocesan COVID-19 Restrictions: An Update from Bishop Shannon

Dear People of God in the Diocese of Vermont: Earlier this week, Governor Scott announced that Vermont has become the first state in the country to vaccinate 80% of its population, and released our state from all COVID-19 restrictions. In keeping with this milestone of progress against the pandemic to which we have lost so

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Guidelines for Church Feeding Programs and use of Church Kitchens

From the Diocesan Restart Team Guidelines for Church Feeding Programs and use of Church Kitchens There is an urgent need to serve those who are hungry in our communities, especially as many will lose temporary hotel/motel housing at the end of June. It is not necessary for a congregation to have an approved Phase 4

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Bishop’s Appeal 2021

As we prepare for a post-COVID world, I am thinking a good deal about Pentecost. On that day, the scriptures tell us, the church was born in a swirl of violent wind and tongues of fire, and nothing has ever been the same. Here in the Diocese of Vermont, we are experiencing our church’s rebirth

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Update from Bishop Shannon and the Diocesan Restart Team: Indoor and Outdoor Worship, Communion

Dear People of God in the Diocese of Vermont, Our state is continuing to make progress in curtailing the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic, and that means we can loosen some of the restrictions the Restart Team and I have put in place to help keep members of the diocese safe as we continue our

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A Deacon Finds His Way: Jonathan Ross Joins St. Andrew’s, St. Johnsbury

The Rev. Jonathan Ross likes to tell people “there are more deacons out there, we’ve just got to find them.” Ross, who was ordained in September, was a prime example of a “deacon waiting to be found.” Ross works with victims of child abuse and neglect as a Family Services Worker for the Vermont Department

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Updates from the Diocesan Restart Team: Communion Outdoors on Pentecost 2021

Revision to In-Person Outdoor Worship Guidelines After consultation with the Vermont Department of Health, the Restart Committee is revising the space requirements published in guidelines released April 12.  Rather than requiring 10 feet of space between persons at outdoor services, the new guideline requires 10 feet of space per person for unvaccinated individuals. Six feet

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