January 23,
Volume 17
No. 2
 The Dio Log

news and events in the Episcopal Diocese of Maine since 1999
Open the doors and see all the people! The first service of Prince of Peace Lutheran and St. Mark's Episcopal in Augusta. St. Mark's baptismal font graces the center aisle.
The Advent Campaign raises more than $30k for Bucksport mill employees and affected families

In just four weeks, members from nearly half of the Diocese of Maine's 60 congregations raised $30,658.50 to contribute to nine organizations serving the 579 employees who lost their jobs as the result of the Verso Paper Mill closure in Bucksport. The Advent Campaign for Bucksport Mill Employees, anchored by a $10,000 donation from Diocesan Council through the Diocese's Emergency Discretionary Fund, will contribute the following amounts to the designated agencies:
  • Washington Hancock Community Agency which administers the Bucksport Mill Crisis Fund (available to all former employees no matter where they reside) - $17,338.50
  • Waldo Community Action Program - $1,512.50
  • Penquis Community Action Program - $1,502.50
  • To five local, well-established food pantries through the Good Shepherd Food Bank - Bucksport - $3,130; Orland - $1,735; Ellsworth - $1680; Searsport - $1,770; Blue Hill - $1,990.
Special thanks to St. Barnabas, Rumford, and Christ Church, Eastport, both small churches that made extremely generous gifts to the campaign.

All three CAP agencies that will distribute funds host programs that will assist those in need with heating fuel and utility support, as well as a variety of other services.

Many thanks to all who made gifts to support our neighbors in the Bucksport region.

Mainers travel to Kansas to learn about youth ministry events

Two young people and two adults traveled to the Diocese of Kansas recently to participate in and learn about youth events in another diocese. Alyssa Smith from St. Ann's in Windham, Alexandria Collins from St. Paul's in Brunswick, and adult leaders Ryan Corum, and Kim Wallace from St. Ann's in Windham are pictured here. On the front of their shirts is the name of the weekend: the Hebrew word Miqra, which means "a public reading of Scripture." According to leaders in Kansas, the event was the 12th Miqra weekend, held in the diocese in which the entire Bible is read aloud over the course of the weekend. Photographer and diocesan communication officer, Melodie Woerman, interviewed Alyssa and Alexandria and described them as "articulate and adorable."

Way to represent the Diocese of Maine! We look forward to hearing what you learned.

in the news...

This engaging post is making the rounds on social media: "11 Things I love about the Episcopal Church."

And from the Department of Not-So-Great-News, though the headline is pretty funny: This article in the New Hampshire Union Leader outlines a scam recently used on churches in New Hampshire and one we've seen occasionally in Maine. When caring for neighbors church leaders are urged to balance compassion with common sense precautions. "Alleged church scammer blames his bookie."

voices among us...

In response to the budget proposal from Governor LePage that would, in part, allow municipalities to tax nonprofit organizations (though not church buildings used for worship) with property valued at more than $500,000, Dean Ben Shambaugh of St. Luke's Cathedral in Portland wrote this op-ed published in the Portland Press Herald on January 20: "Nonprofits contribute to communities even without paying taxes."

The Rev. Lael Sorensen, rector of St. Peter's, Rockland, reflects in her blog, For the Fullness of Joy, on the impact of Marcus Borg, the theologian and Biblical scholar who died this week. His obit from Religion News Service is here.


Adult Formation Resources Exchange: Daily Lenten Offerings


 The newest recommendation from the Adult Formation Resources Exchange:  "So much of our stress and anxiety derives from our pollution of time. God has given us the gift of time, and called it holy, yet we often experience time as a curse," so say the Brothers of the Society of St. John the Evangelist (SSJE). Join the Brothers this Lent in rediscovering time as a gift. Sign up at  www.SSJE.org/time for their daily 2-minute videos.




2015 New Initiative Grant applications welcomed


Dreaming about a new ministry in your community? 


Apply now for a 2015 New Initiative Grants from Diocesan Council. Each congregation and organization in the Diocese of Maine is eligible to apply for funding to support new ministries or expanding existing ministries in new directions. Applications will be evaluated on the how closely they meet the Seven Criteria for Mission, approved at Diocesan Convention in 2011.


The deadline for applications is 4 p.m. on Friday, February 6. Diocesan Council will make grant recommendations at its February 21 meeting.


The online application and link to application worksheet may be found at www.surveymonkey.com/s/2015newinitiative or check out the announcement in the newnortheast.me.


Dream big!



The diocesan office has a surfeit of Books of Common Prayer and various hymnals


Is your church in need of some prayerbooks or hymnals, Barbara Martin at the diocesan office would be happy to help send some your way. Contact her at bmartin@episcopalmaine.org or 772-1953 x125.



A reminder about Parochial Reports from Diocesan Treasurer Dick Rozene


If you missed the diocesan convention in Presque Isle, you missed the gentle reminder that the 2014 parochial reports are due to the diocesan office on Monday, March 2, 2015. If you were there, thank you for making note of the date. Having the parochial reports in on time enables the diocesan staff and and Finance Committee to begin their task of preparing a preliminary budget for 2016. While this date may seem way too soon, as convention doesn't occur until October, timely submittal is very important and much appreciated. Thanks in advance. 

Consider joining "A Walk through the Parochial Report" webinar offered on two dates: February 10 and 12. See webinar details below under "Upcoming in Maine."


Learn more about Hannaford's gift card fundraising program for nonprofits and churches


Several congregations across the diocese benefit from Hannaford's "passive" fundraising program. By buying bulk gift cards and allowing members to purchase them, your church earns money when people shop using these pre-paid gift cards. Organizations earn 5% of the gift card order with every gift card purchase totaling $1,000 or more. For example, a $1,500 gift card order equals $75 for your organization (30 families each purchase one $50 gift card.) For more information contact Cynthia McCormack at 671-9416.







"Eyewitness to Gaza" with the Rev. Bob and Maurine Tobin on February 5



The Tobins had opportunity in December 2014 to enter Gaza to visit Al Ahli Arab Hospital, an institution of the Episcopal Diocese of Jerusalem (and supported by the Diocese of Maine), and to view the devastation resulting from the Israeli summer war on Gaza. (Read the Tobin's updated account of their trip on the NNE blog.)


Via WebEx they will share their eyewitness experiences on Thursday, February 5 at 7:30 p.m. with commentary and brief videos that highlight both the catastrophic conditions under which Gazans are living and the extraordinary medical and psycho-social care provided by the Christian and Muslim staff of this remarkable hospital. 


Gather to watch at with other members of your congregation or log-in from home at episcopalmaine.webex.com


 Ally trainings for Wabanaki REACH offered in Orono and Portland


Maine Episcopalians are encouraged to attend one of two upcoming trainings to become allies in the ongoing truth and reconciliation work with Maine tribes and to gain in-depth learning about how to support this work of truth, healing and change.


Maine-Wabanaki REACH, in collaboration with Maine Wabanaki-State Child Welfare Truth & Reconciliation Commission, is hosting a two training sessions in February. 


The first will be held at on Saturday, February 7, at the Wilson Center in Orono. Details here. The second is a two-part training in Portland split into two evenings, Wednesday, February 11, and Thursday, Feb. 12, from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m., at First Parish Church.  Details here.


An application may be downloaded here and brought to the training.


Being a REACH ally can mean making food for events, speaking to groups or helping organize events. Come explore what you can do. With a modest staff and limited resources, we are grateful for your willingness to step forward and be part of this historic process.


Please RSVP or direct your questions to Arla Patch, REACH Community Engagement Coordinator, at 890-0966.




Stewardship workshop with Lisa Meeder Turnbull


Diocesan Stewardship Consultant Lisa Meeder Turnbull will lead a session on Monday, February 9, at 7 p.m. She will cover the topic "Strategic Thinking."  Join the conversation at episcopalmaine.webex.com.





Eucharistic Visitor Training at St. Paul's, Brunswick



On Tuesday, February 10, beginning at 1 p.m., St. Paul's, Brunswick, will host a Eucharistic Visitors Training. Register here. Questions? Please contact Teresa Pinney at tpinney@episcopalmaine.org


Orientation webinar for new Vestry members offered by Episcopal Church Foundation on February 10

The Episcopal Church Foundation (ECF) will offer a Vestry orientation webinar on Tuesday, February 10, from 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. Learn more and register here.  Check here for a list of upcoming and archived webinars on other topics and here to see this month's online edition of Vestry Papers as well as past editions.





Take a Walk through the Parochial Report


Canon for Finance and Stewardship, Terry Reimer, will offer two sessions by WebEx to walk church leaders through the steps to fill out the Parochial Report. Choose either Tuesday, February 10, or Thursday, February 12. Both sessions will begin at 7 p.m. and last one hour, including time for Q&A. Go to episcopalmaine.webex.com shortly before 7 p.m. to be ready for a prompt start.





Godly Play Storytelling Circle gathers at St. Ann's, Windham, and online


On Wednesday, February 11, all are welcome to gather for a Godly Play session at 6 p.m. at St. Ann's in Windham. Participants may also join from home through WebEx by visiting episcopalmaine.webex.com. Click here for a flyer.







Kids in grades 6-8 are invited to the Winter Middle School Event  

Registration is now open for the diocesan Winter Middle School Event, which will be held March 6 to 8, from 6:30 p.m. on Friday until 2 p.m. on Sunday at St. Paul's Church in Brunswick. It's a great time for your kids in grades 6 to 8 to be part of something bigger. There'll be discussions, games, swimming, music, activities, youth-led worship, new friends and fun. Fred Fowler, Sherry Sivret and Rev. Nancy Moore will lead. The Sunday Eucharist - open to everyone - will be at 1:00. 

Registration is at www.maineyouth.org.


 Episcopal Peace Fellowship - Maine Chapter to meet in Camden
on Saturday, March 7


All are welcome on Saturday, March 7, to the next Episcopal Peace Fellowship meeting at St. Thomas Episcopal Church in Camden. The meeting begins at 10 a.m. and continue through a potluck lunch. Members are encouraged to contribute a simple food item.


Discussion of EPF's agenda for 2015 is ongoing as we invite new ideas, effective action, and creative peacemaking efforts. All members are encouraged to come and participate!



Stewardship workshop with Lisa Meeder Turnbull


Diocesan Stewardship Consultant Lisa Meeder Turnbull will lead a session on Monday, March 9, at 7 p.m. She will cover the topic "Know Your Stuff."  Join the conversation at  episcopalmaine.webex.com.





Invite high schoolers to TEC (Teens Encounter Christ) 

Registration is now open at www.maineyouth.org for our diocesan Lenten high school event. Carolyn Gildart, a young adult volunteer from St. Aidan's in Machias, says: "Attending my first Diocesan Youth Event was by far the best decision I made in high school. Through Diocesan Youth Events I grew closer to God, learned about myself, became interested in the guitar and made many great friends."  


TEC is March 20-22 at Trinity Church in Portland. The Rev. Roy Partridge is the priest and teens are coming from all over Maine and New Hampshire. Here's a TEC information flyer.  





Date change for Bishop's Book Group on Being Christian


All individuals and groups reading the book Being Christian by Rowan Williams are invited to join the Bishop on either March 25 and 26 (your choice) at 7 p.m. for an online discussion. This is date change from dates published in the last edition of The Dio Log. 


Also, anyone leading a book discussion on this book during Lent is encouraged to contact Jane Hartwell at jhartwell@episcopalmaine.org or Bishop Steve Lane at slane@episcopalmaine.org for support.  

Details to follow.



Strengthening communities of faith for God's mission in congregations across Maine