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Mission Matters

 News from the Episcopal Diocese
of Western Massachusetts
April 26, 2013    
                                                                                                                                       Like us on Facebook   
Watertown sidewalk after the bombings.

                                                     Diocesan News 
In This Issue
Bishop Doug Fisher's prayers for the victims of explosions
Dean Munroe follows example of "everyman" Peter
Clergy Conference 2013
El Salvador missionaries
Climate Revival, April 27
Regional Confirmations and Procedures
Upcoming Safe Church training
Spring UTO ingathering
Fire on the Water Festival
Bike Blessing
St, James', Greenfield celebrates its bicentennail
Recovering from our cultural addictions
Collaborative church blood drive
Ugandan Evening
Job opening
Vital Practices/Vital Posts
Diocesan Calendar, Save the Date
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Diocese of Western Mass   




 The next issue of 

   Mission Matters will be sent on Thursday, May 9, 2013. Please email your information to  Deborah Johansen Harris

by Wednesday, May 8 to be included in the May 9th issue.

 Mission Matters is published on the second and fourth Thursdays of the month.


NOTE: IPods and some browsers may dislodge or otherwise scramble the graphics in this newsletter. If so, please view Mission Matters on the diocesan Website by clicking here.

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Bishop Doug Fisher: Prayers for the Victims of the Marathon Explosions
Emma Hennessy, 7, and her brother Joey, 9, took part in a candlelight service at Trinity Episcopal Church in Milford, Tuesday, April 16. The vigil honored the victims of the Boston Marathon bombings. Photo: Reverend Mac


We in the Diocese of Western Massachusetts join our sisters and brothers in the Diocese of Massachusetts and people throughout the world in praying for those killed and injured in today's tragic events at the Boston Marathon. Just a week ago we heard in our Scriptures the demand of Thomas that he would only believe in the Risen Jesus if Jesus took the wounds and the wounded of this world with him into New Life. We believe and trust in a God who wraps the dying and wounded of this world in love.


So we pray: God of life and love, surround those who suffer this day with hope and grace. Thank you for the helpers who rushed to their aid. Guide the hands of those who strive to heal. Comfort those who mourn. Be our God as we cry out to you "into your hands we commend our spirit." Amen.



To donate to the Victims: One Fund Boston 

For resources and links: Mass. Council of Churches 

Coming to Terms with the Marathon Bombing by Rev. Kevin Bean 

Presiding Bishop offers prayers for Boston 


Dean Jim Munroe follows example of 'everyman' Peter in pastoring cathedral
Jim Munroe
The Very Rev. James Munroe, dean of Christ Church Cathedral in Springfield, Massachusetts, discusses the Apostle Peter during a parish retreat for St. Peter's Episcopal Church of Morristown, New Jersey. Photo/Sharon Sheridan


[ENS] When James Munroe was elected dean of Christ Church Episcopal Cathedral in Springfield, MA in late
1997, he told his mother his title would change from "the Rev." to "the Very Rev."  "She collapsed on the ground in hysterical laughter," he recounted recently while leading a parish retreat for St. Peter's Episcopal Church, Morristown, New Jersey.

Munroe, 66, takes a humble approach to his job as leader of the Diocese of Western Massachusetts cathedral. During the April 19-21 retreat, held at the Tuscarora Inn and Conference Center in Mount Bethel, Pennsylvania, he focused on the grace given to the well-meaning but fallible apostle Peter, who he called an "everyman." Read more.

Clergy Conference 2013: Deadline is today, April 26


God's Stories & Our Stories:

Being Transformed by the Word


May 6, 3:00 p.m.  through Lunch on May 8


Our Lady of Calvary Retreat House

31 Colton Street

Farmington, CT, 06032

(860) 677-8519

Our Lady of Calvary Retreat House website 


For more  information about the 2013 Clergy Conference, please click on 2013 Clergy Conference 


El Salvador: Missionaries head into the field, face challenges
[Episcopal News Service - San Salvador, El Salvador] For missionaries Tom and Dianne Wilson the most challenging part of service in El Salvador thus far has been learning Spanish.

The couple, from Rutland, Massachusetts, and members of St. Francis Episcopal Church in Holden, in the Diocese of Western Massachusetts, arrived on March 4 and have spent the first six weeks of missionary service in the Anglican/Episcopal Church of El Salvador, studying Spanish at the Center for Exchange and Solidarity and living with a host family, completing the Spanish-language immersion experience.


"Language is the biggest challenge," followed by the heat and the mosquitoes, said Dianne Wilson, 65, a retired municipal government tax assessor. (Follow their blog.

Missionaries continued. 

Climate Revival, Boston: This Saturday, April 27

A Climate Revival will be held from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. in downtown Boston on Saturday, April 27. This important event will be an ecumenical festival of preaching, prayer and music to inspire Christians across New England with Resurrection hope and resolve as we face the climate crisis.  


We are delighted to let you know that The Most Rev. Dr. Katharine Jefferts Schori and UCC General Minister and President Geoffrey Black have agreed to preach at the Revival. Worship will begin at 10:00 a.m. at Old South Church and will end at Trinity Church at 3:00 p.m., followed by a climate justice rally held outside in Copley Square. Archbishop Desmond Tutu and renowned climate leader Bill McKibben will participate via DVD.  For more information, please click on Climate Revival continued. 

Also, please click on:  Climate Revival brochure., and Service booklet.. 


Regional Confirmations Procedures


Thursday, May 8: Ascension Day, 7:00 p.m. at St. Stephen's, Pittsfield -- Berkshire Corridor  


Saturday, May 11, 5 Easter, 10:00 a.m. at Christ Church Cathedral -- Springfield Valley Corridor  


Saturday, May 18, 7 Easter, 5:00 p.m. at  St. Stephen's, Westborough -- Worcester Corridor  


For more information, please click on Regional Confirmations Procedures.


Upcoming Safe Church training

The Rev. Tanya Wallace has scheduled three upcoming Safe Church training workshops. All-day Basic training workshops are scheduled for Tuesday, April 30 and Saturday, May 11. Basic training is for clergy, church employees and lay leaders. Click here for the Registration form for both Basic workshops. There is also an upcoming training workshop for Volunteers on Saturday, June 1st. This training is for Eucharistic Visitors and anyone who works with children and youth. Click here for the Registration form for Volunteer training. All training certifications should be updated every three years. Parishes also have the option of hiring the Rev. Wallace directly to lead a workshop for their own parish. For additional information contact Karen Warren at (413) 737-4786, Extension 18 or by email.   

Spring UTO ingathering for parishes

The Spring United Thank Offering ingathering will be MAIL-IN. The UTO Board suggests May 12,  the Sunday after the Ascension, as an ingathering date for parishes. Please make your check out to: The Episcopal Diocese of WMA, with UTO in the memo, and mail by June 9 to: The Episcopal Diocese of WMA, ATTN: Esther Barker, Diocesan Accounting Manager, 37 Chestnut St., Springfield, MA 01103. Thank You!  

Susan Howland, UTO Coordinator


Around Our Parishes
News, Views & Events
Fire on the Water Festival - May 19
Living God's Mercy, Compassion and Hope
Don't miss the Fire on the Water Music and Preaching Festival from 2:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. on the Feast of Pentecost, Sunday, May 19 at Indian Ranch on Route 16 in Webster. Sponsored by the Church of the Reconciliation, Webster, the event will feature preaching by Bishop Douglas Fisher and the Rev. Dr. William Bergmann, Rector of the Good Shepherd. Three live bands will provide inspirational music. Clinton. Free admission. For more information, please click
Bike Blessing -- May 5

From Harleys to tricycles to mopeds to unicycles--all bikes will be blessed on Sunday, May 5 from  1:00 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. at Fountain Park, 883 Tinkham Road, Wilbraham. Certificates for various categories will be offered. Please bring a non-perishable food item for the Survival Center. Brought to you by Christ the King Lutheran, Wilbraham; Church of the Epiphany, Wilbraham; and St. Mark's, East Longmeadow.


St. James', Greenfield's Bicentennial  Celebration -- May 5-14

Everyone in the diocese is welcome to attend any or all of the bicentennial events at St. James', Greenfield. The program includes a special service on Tuesday, May 14 at 7:00 p.m. when Bishop Doug Fisher will celebrate the new ministry of the church's priest-in-charge, the Rev. Heather Blais.  Click on the Bicentennial program of events. 


Workshop: Recovering from our cultural addictions -- April 27
The Rev. Jennifer E. Gregg, BSLC Director; and The Rev. Joel Huntington, South Congregational, Pittsfield will facilitate a workshop on "Recovering from our Cultural Addictions" on Saturday, April 27th from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. at St. Mark's, East  Longmeadow.Spaces are limited so please register early! 
For more information, please click on workshop.  
Collaborative Church Blood Drive -- May 5 - 18
As a "first" in many years, five Worcester churches are joining together for a blood drive from May 5 to May 18 at the Red Cross Blood Donation center at 381 Plantation Street, Five Biotech, Suite 110 in Worcester. Participating parishes are St. Mark's, St. Matthew's, St.Michael's on the Heights, St. Luke's and All Saints'. Donors must register beforehand by calling the parish office at St. Matthew's  (508)755-4433. 
"Ugandan Evening" -- May 10

"Mission work in Uganda?! Yes!," says The Rev. Deacon

Dr. Lynn Auerbach and friends. 

Jane Griesbach, diocesan chair of global missions.  


Through the Connect-Africa Foundation, congregations in Western Massachusetts have been helping Ugandan children orphaned by AIDS through educational support and business loans to their guardians. Now for the first time three of our churches are coming together for a special "Ugandan Evening" to let others learn about the amazing work of this organization from its co-director Dr. Lynn Auerbach.  


All are invited to St. Luke's, Worcester on Friday, May 10, 6:00-8:30 p.m. to enjoy a delicious authentic Ugandan dinner while learning about and supporting Connect-Africa. Good Shepherd in Clinton and St. John's in Sutton, also longtime supporters of Connect-Africa's mission, are cosponsoring the evening with St. Luke's.
For more information about the diocesan service in Uganda, please click on Ugandan Evening continued.

For information about the event, please click on Ugandan dinner.

Open Position

 Please click on the following links for information:   

Episcopal Diocese of New Hampshire Canon for Mission Resources

The Episcopal Church News

 Vital Practices/Vital Posts: Administrator as Minister

The following article is reprinted here in light of Professional Administrators Day earlier this week. God Bless all our hardworking administrative ministers!
Please click on Vital Post.
Diocesan Calendar
Save the Date


27 - WMA/CT Title IV Disciplinary Board training, 10:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m., St. Andrew's, Longmeadow

27 - Climate Revival, Copley Square, Boston 

30 - Basic Safe Church Training,  9:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m., All Saints', South Hadley



5 - Bishops' Legacy Fellowship Recognition Dinner, 4:00 p.m., Christ Church Cathedral, Springfield 

6-8 - Diocesan Clergy Conference, 3:00 p.m. May 6 through lunch May 8, Our Lady of Calvary, Farmington, CT

9 - Berkshire Corridor Regional Confirmation,7:00 p.m., St. Stephen's, Pittsfield

11 - Valley Corridor Regional Confirmation, 10:00 a.m., Christ Church Cathedral, Springfield 

11 - Basic Safe Church Training, 9:00 a.m. -  3:00 p.m., All Saints', Worcester 

15 - Retired Clergy Luncheon with Bishop, 11:30 a.m., Publick House, Sturbridge

18 - Worcester Corridor Regional Confirmation, 5:00 p.m., St. Stephen's, Westborough  



1 -  Safe Church training for Volunteers, 9:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m., St. James', Greenfield 

13 - Diocesan Council Meeting, 2:00 p.m.- 6:00 p.m., Diocesan House