The Diocese of the Episcopal Church of Louisiana
EDoLA News: a monthly e-newsletter of the Diocese of LouisianaVolume 8, Issue 4
May 2014
From the Bishop's Office
May We Introduce You to....


Cassandra Reiger

Cassandra Reiger has joined the Diocesan staff as Accounting Assistant.  She is married to Bryon and has two children, Paul, age 8, and Emma, age 2. They recently moved back to New Orleans after Bryon completed his time in the military. Cassandra is in school earning her bachelors degree in Accounting and minor in Business Administration. She is planning to have her CPA license by next summer.

Cassandra's job duties include accounts payable, accounts receivable, and insurance. 

Cassandra's email is [email protected]

Joy Shackelford
Also new on staff is Joy Shackelford, Administrative Assistant to the Canon to the Ordinary. Joy lives in Slidell and has one daughter, Kali, age 10. She has extensive administrative assistant experience, over 25 years in several organizations.
Her job duties include clergy and lay licensing, correspondence for the Canon, Convention Journal, and Convention registration.
Joy's email is [email protected]
Pentecost Block Party
Saturday, June 7 from 2:00 PM - 6:00 PM
St. Luke's Episcopal Church, 1222 N. Dorgenois St, New Orleans

 Parishioners from across the diocese are planning to attend the Pentecost Block Party at St. Luke's Episcopal Church, 1222 N. Dorgenois St, New Orleans, on Saturday June 7th from 2-6 PM, sponsored by the Diocese of Louisiana Racial Reconciliation Commission. The Pentecost Block Party will be a great afternoon of food, music, fun and fellowship. We hope you can join us!
The musical lineup includes: Charmaine Neville & Friends, Dr. Jazz & The New Orleans Sounds, St. Luke's Choir & Guests, Jorge Riveres, and Abundant Praise. 
Complimentary food and drinks include: 
  • Red beans & rice (provided by All Souls Episcopal Church, New Orleans)
  • Hot dogs (provided by St. Luke's Episcopal Church, New Orleans)
  • Hamburgers (provided by Trinity Episcopal Church, New Orleans)
  • Jambalaya (provided by St. Martin's Episcopal Church, Metairie)
  • Strawberry shortcake (provided by All Saints Episcopal Church, Ponchatoula), 
  • Cookies (provided by St. Paul's Episcopal Church, New Orleans) 
  • Brownies (provided by Chapel of the Holy Spirit, New Orleans)
  • Iced tea and lemonade (provided by Church of the Annunciation, New Orleans)
  • Soft drinks (provided by St. Margaret's Episcopal Church, Baton Rouge, and Church of the Nativity, Rosedale)

....and the menu is growing!

Seeking Volunteers for the 
2nd Annual Tee It Up With the Bishop

Volunteers are needed to help organize the 2nd Annual Tee it Up With the Bishop taking place later this fall in October. We need volunteers to start working now to assist in the following areas: Promotion, Fundraising / Sponsorship, Registration, Tournament Operation, Post-Game Festivities, and Donations for prizes, food etc. 

All profits from the tournament are returned to ministry work in the Diocese of Louisiana. 

Email Mark Hudson ([email protected]) or Karen Mackey ([email protected]) for more information.
Round Three Living With Purpose Applications Due June 2
from Duane Nettles, Living With Purpose Program Director

Applications are now being accepted for the 2014-2015 Living With Purpose Program year. The purpose of this program, hosted by Episcopal Diocese of Louisiana, is to equip young adults to be effective leaders in our complex world, through hands-on service, community building, and spiritual formation. The Living With Purpose Fellowship is one program containing two houses, one in Baton Rouge and one in New Orleans. Orientation is combined, as are our monthly workshop days, where we get into deeper spiritual formation and social change trainings and seminars. In the course of the year, participants will also engage in discussions, seminars, and trainings designed to add greater depth of understanding of their community, their work, and their faith. The spiritual formation curriculum exposes Corps members to different spiritual practices, and educates through reading books together, journaling, and discussion. At each site placement, participants will develop their leadership potential and gain concepts, skills, and orientations essential for effective community engagement.

LWP welcomes passionate, adventurous applicants between the ages of 21-29. We are looking for those willing to work for social justice by serving those in need, to live in intentional community according to principles of cooperation and simplicity, and to engage in group discussions and personal discernment. We encourage spiritual seekers of all kinds to apply.

To learn more about the Living With Purpose Program or the Episcopal Service Corps, go to:

Application website:

More information: [email protected]

Change in mailing address for all correspondence:
Diocese of Louisiana
1623 Seventh St
New Orleans, LA 70115
Phone: (504) 895-6634
Fax: (504) 895-6637
May 2014 Churchwork
The May 2014 Churchwork is available for download here.
In this issue: 
  • Bishop Thompson's Convention Address
  • Bishop's Journal
  • Convention Election Results
  • St. Anna's Urban Academy
  • St. Matthew's Rebuilding Update
  • 127th Gathering of the ECW
  • Out and About in the Diocese
From the Clergy
Ordination Anniversaries 
May 2014


May 1

The Rev. Gedge Gayle- Priest 

The Rev. Minka Sprague- Priest 



May 5 

The Rev. James Coleman - Priest 



May 8

The Rev. Maggie Dennis - Deacon

The Rt. Rev. Morris K. Thompson, Jr.- Bishop



May 16

The Rev. Kenn Ritter- Priest 



May 18 

The Rev. Thomas Blackmon- Deacon 



May 21

The Rev. Harry Jenkins- Deacon



May 23 

The Rev. Dee Dee Estes - Priest 

The Rev. Donald Muth - Priest 

The Very Rev. Susan Gaumer- Deacon

The Rev. Hill Riddle - Priest 



May 25 

The Rev. Jerry Rogers - Priest 

The Rev. Phillips Thomas - Priest 

Deacon Reese Wiggins - Deacon


May 26

The Rev. Henry Hudson- Deacon



May 27 

The Rev. Jervis Burns- Priest  



May 29

The Rev. Lonell Wright - Deacon



May 30 

The Rev. Craig Dalferes - Deacon

The Rev. Jim Morrison - Priest 

The Rev'd Doug Lasiter Called to Serve St. John's, Thibodaux & Trinity, Morgan City


The parishes of St. John's, Thibodaux and Trinity, Morgan City have called the Rev. Douglas (Doug) Lasiter as their Rector.  Fr. Lasiter comes to us from the Diocese of Montana.  He and his wife Robi have two children, Craig (17) and Emily (14). Please welcome Doug+ and his family to the Diocese of Louisiana! 

Duane Nettles Ordained a Transitional Deacon


On April 30 at Church of the Annunciation, New Orleans, Duane Nettles was ordained a transitional deacon. Duane is serving at Church of Annunciation and as the Program Director of the Living With Purpose Program.
More photographs can be found on the Diocese of Louisiana Facebook Page.
How You Can Help: Tornado & Flood Disaster Relief 

Mayflower, Ark., May 4, 2014 -- Tornado damage in the residential neighborhood of Plantation Drive in Mayflower, Arkansas, which was struck by an EF-4 tornado on April 27. Photo by Christopher Mardorf/FEMA 












A Prayer in Times of Disaster


Compassionate God... Draw near to us in this time of sorrow and anguish, comfort those who mourn, strengthen those who are weary, encourage those in despair, and lead us all to fullness of life; through the same Jesus Christ, our Savior and Redeemer, who liveth and reigneth with thee, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, God for ever and ever. Amen


- Holy Women, Holy Men: Celebrating the Saints (Church Publishing: New York), page 733



A Prayer for First Responders


Blessed are you, Lord, God of mercy, who through your Son gave us a marvelous example of charity and the great commandment of love for one another. Send down your blessings on these your servants, who so generously devote themselves to helping others. Grant them courage when they are afraid, wisdom when they must make quick decisions, strength when they are weary, and compassion in all their work. When the alarm sounds and they are called to aid both friend and stranger, let them faithfully serve you in their neighbor. We ask this through Christ our Lord. Amen.


- Adapted from the Book of Blessings, #587, by Diana Macalintal






Contribute to the Episcopal Relief and Development US Disaster Response Fund and help communities prepare for and respond to crises at home. The US Disaster Fund enables Episcopal Relief and Development to respond swiftly to emergencies in the United States, providing local church partners with essential supplies and resources as needed. Your gift enables them to help dioceses prepare for crises and lessen the impact on their communities. 

Visit the Episcopal Relief and Development Donation page:


While the most recent disasters across the country are still assessing the needs of the victims, there are resources available for you to learn more on how you can help victims of disasters that have occurred throughout the past few years. Here are a few of those volunteer resources:

Hurricane Preparedness Week: 
May 25th - May 31st 


Prepare Your Congregation


Studies of behavior following disasters have shown that groups working together in the disaster period perform more effectively if there has been prior planning for disaster response. These studies show that organized grassroots efforts may be more successful if they are woven into the social and political fabric of the community and places of worship.


Step 1: Build a Team

Forming a Disaster Leadership team for your parish is one of the best ways to ensure that your church and congregation are properly prepared and to see that all those carefully laid plans are realized during the typically chaotic time after a disaster strikes. Trusting these roles and responsibilities to willing parishioners who have offered up their time and talents to this essential ministry also frees up the rector to devote more time and energy to where he or she is needed most in the wake of a cataclysmic event-in the spiritual and pastoral care of a vulnerable congregation.


What sort of roles will the team fulfill?

  • Authoring and executing church planning and preparedness
  • Helping to educate the congregation about the church's role in preparation and response
  • Participating in ministries that foster church and community resilience
Step Two: Make a Plan

Disaster planning isn't just about hurricanes! Do you know what your church would do in case of a fire, flood, or other local emergency?  Having a plan ensures that your staff and assets are protected. Planning for disaster may include:

  • Staff evacuation and other safety precautions
  • Keeping an up to date inventory of the church's assets
  • The church's role in response and serving the greater community
  • Resuming Sunday morning services as soon as possible
  • Establishing a working communications network
  • Care of archives and records and many other considerations, at the discretion of the rector and the Disaster Leadership Team.

Planning can sometimes seem overwhelming! A diocesan representative is available to facilitate your church's planning and to assist with its implementation. Contact Deacon Elaine Clements, Diocesan Disaster Preparedness and Response Coordinator ([email protected]). Plan templates are available through Episcopal Relief and Development. The plans are very thorough and highly customizable to suit your individual church's needs.


Step Three: Develop Resilience 
The Foundation of Preparedness and Response

Resilience is a measure of how well a community is able to recover from a disastrous incident. More than planning, preparedness, and response, it's an intrinsic quality of healthy communities that sustains them during the grueling days after an event and fuels their recovery, often allowing them to come back stronger and more tightly knit than ever before.



Prepare Your Family and Home


Check out these resources to help you prepare your family and home for hurricane season:


National Hurricane Center: 
American Red Cross: 
LA Governor's Office of Homeland Security: 
NOLA Ready: 
Baton Rouge Mayor's Office:
A Listing of LA Parish Emergency Management Websites: 
From Around the Diocese
Easter and Holy Week in the Diocese of Louisiana

Go to the Diocese of Louisiana Facebook Page to see a collection of Holy Week and Easter photos from around the Diocese. 
Have photos to contribute? Email them to [email protected]
Reclaiming the Gospel of Peace
In April, Deacon Charles deGravelles attended the Reclaiming the Gospel of Peace Conference in Oklahoma City, OK. He wrote about his experience for the Living Church in an article entitled "Custody of the Heart". 

Read "Custody of the Heart":

ECW Annual Gathering
On May 2-3 the Episcopal Church Women of the Diocese of Louisiana held their 127th Annual Gathering at Grace Memorial Church in Hammond. The theme of this year's gathering was "Share the Vision-Shape the Mission". The keynote address, "The Church Addresses Domestic Poverty", was given by The Rev. Mark Stevenson, Domestic Poverty Missioner of the Domestic and Foreign Missionary Society. Bishop Thompson delivered a State of the Church address. Canon Shannon Manning preached at Eucharist. 
Each year three women are honored for their work in the church. This year those women were Fay Atkinson, Katherine Bickham, and Harriet Murrel. Biographies of the 2014 Honored Women can be viewed here 
Read more about the Annual Gathering in the current edition of Churchwork.  
Seniors Heading to LSU?
by the Rev'd Drew Rollins, Chaplain, St. Alban's
It's that time of year again! We at St. Alban's Chapel would like your assistance in making contact with any graduating seniors who will be heading to LSU in the fall. If you would be so kind as to send me names and contact information, someone from St. Alban's Chapel will contact them over the summer to introduce them to our ministries and programs. In the past, we've found that these first and early contacts can make the difference between a student giving St. Alban's a try or not. Currently, I have four very friendly student interns who are good at welcoming newcomers. So any information that you can give us will help (phone, cell phone, address, Facebook)! Thank you for your support!

PHONE: (225) 343-2070 

E-mail: [email protected]


St. Luke's Seeks a Practice Organ
The St. Luke's Episcopal Church Choir in New Orleans is seeking a practice organ, keyboard, or an upright piano that is easily moveable in order to prepare for Sunday worship outside of the sanctuary on Sunday mornings and on other occasions when the Sanctuary organ is in use.

An example of the kind of keyboard the choir seeks to purchase is the Yamaha DGX-500.  The St. Luke's Episcopal Choir is reaching out to the Cathedral and all of parishes of the Diocese to see if a congregation may be looking to sell or donate a similar keyboard or an easily moveable upright piano. 

Please contact the Church Administrator, Jennifer Matthew at (504) 821-0529 or [email protected] 
National Episcopal Health Ministry Conference 
New Orleans, May 10, Diana Meyers, Community Wellness Director of  St. Anna's Episcopal Church, 
spoke of the role of the faith communities after Hurricane Katrina and on self-care of the caregiver 
during times of disaster.

By Susan Hacker Nelson, Episcopal Health Ministries

Episcopal Health Ministries' annual conference was held in New Orleans on May 7-10 at the Hilton, St. Charles Ave. Empowering Health Ministries was the theme for the health ministers, parish nurses and others interested in health and spirituality. 

Sessions ranged from Alzheimer and Dementia care to Recovery Ministry to Violence Prevention and Disaster Preparedness. On Thursday, May 8, G. Scott Morris, M.D., M.Div., CEO of Church Health Ministry, presented  the Annual Jean Denton Keynote Lecture. 

Matthew Ellis, CEO of Episcopal Health Ministries, says "Health ministries contribute to every parish and community. We're excited to share our experiences, learn from others, and create new partnerships in this great city!" 

Learn more about Episcopal Health Ministries:


Men's Retreat
The annual Men's Retreat was held at the Solomon Episcopal Conference Center on April 25-26. 

EDOLA News is published electronically monthly by the Diocese of Louisiana. For more information contact Karen Mackey at 504-895-6634 or [email protected] 

To submit news or events for the EDOLA:  [email protected].  
Submissions for the monthly EDOLA News due by the 25th of each month.
Submissions for the weekly EDOLA Events due by Thursday morning of each week.