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May 30, 2014

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Read Bishop Steve's latest sermon on his blog, Round Maine with Bishop Lane: "If you know me, you know my father"




What's going on in the Diocese of Maine?

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Prayers for...

the family of the Rev. Gordon Hutchins, 96, who died in Massachusetts on May 21. After retiring to Maine, Gordon served for many years as assisting priest at Trinity, Portland. He started his ministry as an army chaplain in 1944 and served until 1970 when he became rector of St. Paul's, Gardner, MA, until 1985.

Condolences may be sent to the family in care of his daughter:

Dr. Ellen Hutchins
66 Florence St.
Melrose, MA 02176

His obituary may be found here.

We also offer both congratulations and prayers for the Rev. Nicole Janelle, a Mainer in the Diocese of Los Angeles.

Congratulations to her for being named a 2014 Episcopal Church Foundation Fellow. The fellowship will allow her to pursue a masters in Public Health at the University of California at Berkeley. Nicole is Episcopal chaplain to UC Santa Barbara and vicar of St. Michael's University Church in Isla Vista, California. We offer prayers to her as she ministers to the students and members of her community in the wake of last week's shootings in Isla Vista.

Around the Diocese

Caring and need meet in Millinocket

Deacon Bob Landry who serves at St. Andrew's, Millinocket, writes movingly of how listening to needs among your neighbors shows God's love to the world

New Initiative Grants - Round 2

At its meeting earlier this month, Diocesan Council approved a second round of New Initiative Grants in 2014.

Have a great idea for a new ministry? Want to collaborate with a local ministry partner to serve your community? Apply for a NIF grant.

Please download and complete this form: 2014 New Initiative Grants Application Worksheet. Then copy and paste your answers to the online form at:

www.surveymonkey.com/s/nif-round2. Please keep the worksheet version for your records.   


The deadline for online submission is Friday, August 29. Council will vote on new applications at its September meeting. Please direct any questions about the process to Heidi Shott at 207.772.1953 x126 or


Pre-Convention information online

195th Annual Convention of the Diocese of Maine

University of Maine, Presque Isle
October 24-25, 2014

For the first time, all pre-convention information usually sent to churches in May will be offered online at www.tinyurl.com/diome2014.

Look for announcements in the Dio Log as new information is added to the page. Currently all information about making reservations for  accommodations and a map locating hotels and UM as well as a link to the delegate certificate is available. Information about nominations, resolutions, and bus service to The County, and Pre-Convention Hearings will be posted soon.

The full convention booklet will be printed and distributed to clergy, delegates, and alternates in September.

Did your congregation or members receive help from ER&D after the ice storm of 1998?

In January 1998, when still known as the Presiding Bishop's Fund for World Relief, Episcopal Relief & Development sent $25,000 in emergency aid to the Diocese of Maine. Fifteen congregations received grants to make repairs, stock heavily-depleted food pantries, assist their members who faced damage to property, lost income, or experienced other needs related to ice storm damage. ER&D would like to tell the story of what happened in Maine as one of the 75 stories that will mark its 75th anniversary.

Was your church one of those assisted? Did you personally benefit from ER&D's support? If so, please be in touch with Heidi Shott at hshott@episcopalmaine.org or call her 772-1953 x126.

Episcopal Church Women...need YOU!
Episcopalians across the country are invited by the Episcopal Church Women to take a survey to help the National Board of the  ECW as it re-imagines its organization. Click here to take the three to five minute survey. It closes on June 30.

Facebook ain't free anymore but one little click can help to expand our reach

For the last several years, Facebook was a free communications tool for non-profits and church groups. If someone 'liked' our Diocese of Maine page, whatever we posted - a link, a photo, a message from the Bishop - would turn up in their news feed. Beginning in November 2013, Facebook changed the algorithm so that instead of 100 per cent of the people who like our page, i.e. 1,209 as of today, seeing our posts (as well as Bishop Steve's tweets which magically appear on our Facebook site) only 1 per cent will...unless we pay to "boost" a given post.

There is a way around it, however. If you roll your cursor over the "Liked" button, a drop-down will offer you the option to click "Get Notifications." That means you will see every post and not miss a thing. The other important way to expand the reach of the Diocese of Maine is to like, comment, and share our posts. Each time you do that, the Facebook gremlins say, "Hey, people seem to like this so let's share it with more people." 

For those of you who like data, in the past week our two posts reached 9,700 people and engaged 385 of them enough to like, comment, share, or click a link. Many of them were likely Maine Episcopalians but many people who saw what we're up to are likely not members of any church. Facebook remains a way for us to let the world know that God's mission is alive in the world, in part, through Episcopal congregations in Maine. So please consider going to our page  www.facebook.com/episcopalmaine and choosing to "Get Notifications." That way we'll be able to put the little bit of money we have for online evangelism to other uses. And if you like what you see, remember to like, comment, and share! Thanks.

Upcoming in Maine and Beyond
Affordable Godly Play training: register by June 5

Registration for this training has exceeded expectations!  To be sure of a space, register by Thursday, June 5. 

The three-day training will be held at Saint Mary in Falmouth on Friday, June 27, from 3 p.m. to 9 p.m., on Saturday June 28 from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., and on Sunday, June 29 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. 

A large, one-time grant from the diocesan New Initiatives Fund enables us to welcome three nationally-known trainers and to reduce the usual $295 fee down to $50 per person.

For childcare, contact Jenn Davidson before June 5.  To arrange for housing or to offer housing, contact Emily Keniston before June 5. Register before June 5 for the $50 rate. Here are links to the registration sites for Core Training and for Advanced Training. (These pages also have more detailed information.)  For more on the Godly Play philosophy see this post in the NNE.

New: Adult Formation Collaboration meets June 19

Join with other people from all over our diocese who are interested in Christian formation for adults. Let's begin to exchange ideas and learn from one another.  There are some amazing things happening in churches all over our diocese! We'll meet on Thursday, June 19, from 10 a.m. to noon at the Diocesan Office at 143 State Street, Portland.  If distance is prohibitive, you can call in at 800-977-8002, code 184756#. Please RSVP to Jane Hartwell at jhartwell@episcopalmaine.org.

BION Camp - register by June 20 for early price

BION Teen Camp is an awesome experience for teens completing grades 6-12. The camp is a collaboration by people from churches all over our diocese, and usually involves more than 20 churches and about 80 people. 

Held from August 19 to 23, BION offers teens activities like ultimate frisbee, beads & hemp, kayaking, swimming, archery and many more. They'll participate in interesting focus groups like Finding God in Art or Music, Soul Collage, Adventures with Paul, Helping Your Hurting Friends, Traveling with Jesus, Life University and more. We'll also play capture the flag, worship God, enjoy campfires, and toast s'mores. 

The early-bird price is $215. Financial aid is also available so that no teen needs to be excluded because of inability to pay.  Download a flyer here. Register online here.

Downeast Spiritual Life Conference: Rebirthing the Divine" With John Philip Newell
July 11 & 12, Maine Maritime Academy, Castine

This year's conference is headlined by one of the world's most prominent teachers of spirituality. In "Rebirthing the Divine," Celtic scholar, peacemaker and poet Rev. Dr. John Philip Newell shares his vision for a reinvigorated
spirituality that celebrates the sacredness of the earth and the oneness of all creation.

A former Warden of the Iona Community in Scotland, he is currently Companion Theologian for the American Spirituality Center of Casa del Sol at Ghost Ranch in New Mexico.

Download a poster and register now at www.downeastspiritual.org.