August 2, 2016
In This Issue
Diocesan Convention Is October 7-8 in Reading:  Registration Open Now
The 145th Diocesan Convention of the Diocese of Bethlehem will take place October 7-8 at the DoubleTree by Hilton in Reading. 

This year's convention will be hosted by the southern region of the diocese and will include a convention Holy Eucharist at Christ Church, Reading. The convention will be the culmination of the diocesan pilgrimage that was announced at the 144th Convention in 2015. Find the draft schedule on the website.

Convention Registration:  Deadline September 21
Registration for this year's diocesan convention is now open. Full registration is $90, and a ticket for Friday evening's dinner only is $40. Sign up online to attend by September 21. If you also want to reserve a room at the DoubleTree, please use the link below. Please note that registering for convention does not guarantee a hotel room.

Room Reservations:  Deadline September 5
All room reservations at the DoubleTree must be made by September 5. Learn more about registration and group rate room reservations at the DoubleTree, and make your reservation online using the Diocese of Bethlehem's registration page. If you plan to stay overnight at the DoubleTree, you must make your own room reservation even if you have already registered for convention.

Call for Resolutions
Resolutions for the 145th Diocese of Bethlehem Convention are being accepted through August 2. Find the resolution format and submission instructions on the website.
2017 Budget and Assessments Now Online
The proposed budget for 2017, which will be voted on by the 2016 diocesan convention in October is now available on the website.

The parish assessments and acceptances for the proposed 2017 budget are also available on the website. Assessments are mandatory contributions from each congregation to the diocesan budget; acceptances are additional, optional payments earmarked for mission and outreach.

Changes to Canons, Constitution Proposed
At the Diocese of Bethlehem's convention in October, delegates will consider a series of twelve changes to the diocese's canons and one change to its constitution.

"These are changes that I signaled at our last diocesan convention, and which over the course of the last year have been endorsed by the trustees of the diocese and by Diocesan Council," Bishop Sean Rowe says. "In one way or another, it's important for us to streamline our governance so that we can spend more of our time digging deep into the mission that God has called us to in this place. I believe that these changes will provide a foundation for us to build on and free up our energy to do new and different things that God is calling us to."

Pilgrimage Blog:  Call for Submissions
Since Advent, the Diocese of Bethlehem's  Pilgrimage Blog has featured stories and reflections on pilgrimage from people across the diocese. In August and September, blog editors Canon Anne Kitch and Canon Maria Tjeltveit, would like to receive reflections and meditations of 300 words or less from each congregation in the diocese.
Support South Sudan
courtesy of Episcopal Relief & Development
Clashes between political factions in South Sudan broke out in early July, displacing nearly 40,000 people in the capital city of Juba.

Episcopal Relief & Development is supporting the emergency response of the Episcopal Church of South Sudan & Sudan through its humanitarian arm, SUDRA (the Sudanese Development and Relief Agency). The agency is providing for approximately 220 households taking refuge on cathedral grounds.

Bishop Anthony Poggo of the Diocese of Kajo Keji reports that the situation in that diocese is calm. The Diocese of Bethlehem has a companion relationship with Kajo Keji and supports schools and a college in the diocese.

"Like all other South Sudanese and others who love and care about this nation, we continue to pray that peace prevails in Juba and the whole nation," wrote Poggo. "Pray that our leaders will recommit themselves to the full implementation of the Agreement on the Resolution of Conflict in the Republic of South Sudan (ARCISS)."

The Episcopal Public Policy Network asks Episcopalians to advocate for increased humanitarian assistance for South Sudan by writing a letter to President Obama. Send a letter using the sample on the Episcopal Church website

Read more about the situation in South Sudan and the church's response on the Episcopal News Service website.

Re-Imagining Faith Formation:  Diocese of Central PA Leadership Day 
Marsha Roscoe
On August 13, join the Diocese of Central Pennsylvania in Lancaster for a leadership day about faith formation. Deacon Marsha Roscoe of the Lower Susquehanna Synod will give the keynote address, and workshops include sessions on prison ministry, biblical storytelling, adult learning, confirmation, and more. 

The cost is $20, which includes lunch. Download a flyer and register online.
Pre-Convention Hearings
Delegates to diocesan convention and other interested members of the diocese can attend one of three pre-convention hearings in September to review resolutions submitted to convention. Bishop Sean will be present at all of the pre-convention hearings to discuss proposed canonical and constitutional changes.

Pilgrimage Resources for Congregations
The Diocese of Bethlehem's pilgrimage began on January 6. In his video pilgrimage message, Bishop Sean says, "The Diocese of Bethlehem has been bold in conceiving its future ... This planning process is deeply rooted in both what is personal to us, and what is good for our entire diocese and our entire region."

Staying Connected to the Pilgrimage
The pilgrimage page on the website is updated regularly--you can find it under "Congregational Resources" on the menu--and our newsletters will feature pilgrimage information and news.

Anyone can sign up to receive our monthly email newsletter and/or our monthly Leadership News, and back issues are available on the website. Please share these links with members of your congregation, encourage them to visit the website and sign up for the newsletter list, and share pilgrimage news and articles in your congregation's newsletter and bulletin.

The Bethlehem Episcopalians Facebook group will also be home to ongoing pilgrimage discussion. Find the group on Facebook and request membership to join the conversation.
Safeguarding God's Children 
All clergy, lay employees, and lay people who work with children are required to complete the Safeguarding God's Children training program offered by the Church Pension Group. Those who need to receive this training may register by following a link at the bottom of the Safe Church page on the diocesan website, where you can also find diocesan policies.
People of Bethlehem
Fries is New Theologian-in-Residence at Trinity, Easton

Trinity Episcopal Church in Easton has named the Rev. Dr. Paul R. Fries as theologian-in-residence. In his new position, Fries will provide theological reflection and education to the clergy and lay leaders of the congregation. Fries is ordained in the Reformed Church in America and is professor emeritus of foundational and constructive theology at New Brunswick Theological Seminary in New Jersey. Read more.

St. Stephen's Pro-Cathedral Hosts Choir Training
From July 18-24, St. Stephen's Pro-Cathedral hosted the King's College Summer Choir Training Course sponsored by the Royal School of Church Music in America. WBRE/WYOU in Wilkes-Barre reported on the week. Watch the story online.

In Memoriam
Anne M. Schenkel, wife of former Cathedral Church of the Nativity dean Robert D. Schenkel, Jr., died on July 23. Read her obituary online. May light perpetual shine upon her.
Resources and Reminders
The Diocese of Bethlehem newSpin Blog
newSpin is Bill Lewellis' eclectic sampling of religion news from around the Episcopal Church and beyond. Read the July 7 issue.
Prayers of the People and Jubilate Online
The Rev. Canon Cliff Carr, priest associate at Trinity Episcopal Church in Bethlehem, writes Prayers of the People for each week and prepares a list of hymn selections by season. Find those resources on the new Trinity Bethlehem website.
Cycle of Prayer List
The updated Diocese of Bethlehem Cycle of Prayer list has been posted to the diocesan website:

Upcoming Diocesan Events
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