March 18, 2014Volume 4, Number 29
In This Issue
Diocesan Office Update
Deacons' Retreat Report
Joyous Worship on Tybee
Subscribe to Youth Newsletter
Sewanee Pilgrimage
Summer Camp
VSU Opera Benefit for Church Organ
Spring Clergy Conference
Clergy Spouse Retrea
Columba House Priority Deadline
Showing the Flag
Social Media Connections
Web Links

This Sunday's Lections:
3rd Sunday in Lent
Exodus 17:1-7
Psalm 95
Romans 5:1-11
John 4:5-42
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Ten kids from 8-18 gathered after worship this week at St. Andrew's Douglas to begin anew a youth group in that congregation. Pictured also are the six younger ones (3-6 years old) who hung out with them during the meeting.

Youth Presence Workshops
The Diocese of Georgia is teaming with Youth Presence Ministries to help multiple congregations create or further develop a strong youth presence in their context of ministry. It is the belief of Youth Presence Ministry that Youth Ministry is different in every place and possible in every place. The programs offered will focuses on the local congregation and their unique setting, circumstances, challenges and hopes for the future. This model also fosters church growth by the presence and interface of young people in their midst. 

All Congregations wishing to participate must send at least six participants to the workshops. The workshops will be held Friday from 6-9 and Saturday from 8:30-3:30. These participants should be people who are passionate about creating a youth presence in your church community. They don't have to be the adult youth leaders. At the vision workshop, they will be given skill to help find these people. Participants must commit to coming to the training sessions and, most importantly, working to implement the vision plan in the congregation.

For more information, click here for a PDF: Youth Ministries Overview

Diocesan Office Update  

Canon Logue will preside and preach this Sunday at the closing Eucharist for Cursillo.


Bishop Benhase will attend the House of Bishop's Spring Meeting at Camp Allen in Texas March 20-26. 


This Saturday, Program Manager Rudy Reyes will talk about planting a Columba House in Augusta at St. Alban's, Augusta.

Deacons' Retreat Works on Finding Balance and Peace
This past weekend, a small group of Diocese of Georgia Deacons enjoyed a retreat with Sister Ellen Stephen from the Order of St. Helena, the Episcopal convent in Augusta. She led the group through Passion and Chaos into Presence and Peace to see beauty in the world around us.

Her perspective on our eternal struggle to avoid confronting ourselves was a source of energy for the deacons. She focused on finding peace in the chaos through Prayer, Planning, Protecting our margins and Patience.

Her practical approach to many of life's problems found a home with the group as they dealt with finding time for their ministries and personal lives as the deacons sought peace in the balance of both while reflecting in the south Georgia sun.

Sister Ellen Stephen ended with this charge:
All we need to do is  
Intend to become  
Choose the best we can  
And let God do the rest.
All Saints', Tybee Island

Joyous Worship with Junkanoo Band

 For the fourth year on the Sunday closest to St. Patrick's day, JunkanooWorld performers worshiped with the locals at All Saints' Tybee. The group from the Bahamas participate in both the Tybee and Savannah St. Patrick's Day parades each year.  At the conclusion of the service, the Junkanoos got their special instruments and paraded back in the church with their special brand of music bringing everyone to their feet. The group then led the congregation to the Mission Hall to enjoy a great lunch together. 

Subscribe to Diocesan Youth Newsletter

A great way for teens, their parents, youth ministers and clergy to keep up with Youth Programs is to subscribe to News from the DoG House, the e-newsletter of diocesan youth programs. The newsletter, created by our Missioner for Youth, Elizabeth Burns, had been sent out monthly since November, but is going out each week this Lent. The goal is to let this email carry news of youth ministry at the congregation level and to make a place for teens to share with teens on matters of faith. Back issues are archived at this link.


Sign Up for these Emails

We are encouraging teens, their parents and youth leaders to subscribe to the monthly email. To subscribe to this monthly email follow this link: Diocese of Georgia Constant Contact and make sure all of the email lists you want to receive updates from are checked off in the form.

Sewanee Mission Trip & Pilgrimage

The Sewanee Mission Trip and Pilgrimage is still accepting interested high school students who are able to travel to Sewanee, Tennessee June 23-30. This journey outward to Sewanee will be accompanied by an inward journey as we come to a realization that God is not in one place alone but in every place and every person. Participants will gain a deeper appreciation for their sense of place in creation, a sense of connection to those whom they may not see on a regular basis and the knowledge that they carry that connection with them through the rest of their lives.

Those who are currently enrolled in 9-12 grade are encouraged to join the Pilgrimage and Mission Trip to Sewanee, Tennessee, June 23-30. We will be working with the Community Action Committee, a community outreach program based in and closely associated with Otey Memorial Parish (an Episcopal Church in Sewanee).

Pilgrimage and Mission Trip Coordinator, the Rev. Joshua Varner, "We embark on this mission, not because we will change the world during our 8 or 9 days in Sewanee this coming summer, but because in traveling we will begin to change ourselves, and begin to bring about the dream God has for us and all creation."

The group will stay in the reflective setting of St. Mary's Sewanee, a retreat center founded by the Episcopal Sisters of St. Mary and will work at the convent and in the surrounding area. The trip will take place June 23-30, 2014, and the approximate cost is $1,000. Financial aid is available for anyone considering the trip. Please email Joshua Varner at [email protected] with questions.

A flyer with more complete information, including contact information on how to follow up, is online here: Pilgrimage and Mission Trip 2014

The registration form is online here: Sewanee Trip Registration

St. Thomas, Thomasville 

Valdosta State Opera Performs Benefit for Church Organ

Raymond Hughes, former Metropolitan Opera Chorus Master and Artistic Director of Thomasville Music and Drama Troupe, will perform the role of the Maestro/"Old" Impresario in a performance of Mozart's sparkling and delightfully comic one-act opera, The Impresario, with the Valdosta State University Opera at the Thomasville Center for the Arts on Sunday, March 30th, at 4 p.m.

The Impresario, one of Mozart's early works, is a 'Singspiel', a spoken drama with music. Professor Tamara Hardesty of the VSU faculty has updated the opera's comic dialogue to South Georgia vernacular with many timely and temporal references.

This performance of The Impresario benefits the renovation and restoration of the historic Pilcher organ at St. Thomas' Episcopal Church, the vintage instrument on which Hughes had his first lessons at the age of 12, which he insists was 'twenty' years ago. St. Thomas' organ is one of the significant pipe organs in Georgia in original condition, and requires extensive work if it is to thrive in the twenty-first century.

Tickets in three categories will go on sale on March 20th in downtown Thomasville at Hicks Clothing Company at 115 North Broad Street, and at The Gift Shop, 103 South Broad, and will be available in limited quantities at the door on the day of the performance. Premium/Sponsor tickets for $100 will include Premium Seating at the Center for the Arts. General Admission is $30, and student tickets are $5.
Spring Clergy Conference

The Spring Clergy Conference will be held at Honey Creek from May 4 to 6. The main speaker will be Lauren Winner, Assistant Professor of Christian Spirituality at Duke Divinity. Winner is the author of numerous books, including Girl Meets God and Mudhouse Sabbath. Her study A Cheerful & Comfortable Faith: Anglican Religious Practice in the Elite Households of Eighteenth-Century Virginia will be published in the fall of 2010 from Yale University Press. She has appeared on PBS's Religion & Ethics Newsweekly and has written for The New York Times Book ReviewThe Washington Post Book WorldPublishers WeeklyBooks and Culture, and Christianity Today


The rates for the full conference program, meals and lodgings are $158 for lodge room (based on double occupancy), $240 for a Lodge room (single occupancy), $118 to stay in one of the cottages with other clergy, or in a dorm, and $100 for those tent camping or commuting. For those choosing double occupancy, please let Honey Creek know who you are sharing a room with. 


Click here to register for clergy conference


If you have any questions about the variety of accommodations, call Carolyn Middleton at Honey Creek at (912) 265-9218, but remember to register online rather than over the phone. 

Clergy Spouse Retreat

The Clergy Spouse Retreat will be held at Honey Creek from April 4 to 6. On this Lenten retreat, we will take intentional time to reflect on the various threads of our lives.  Before coming, we invite you to read, "Does this Church Make Me Look Fat" by Rhoda Janzen.  This humorous, thoughtful, and intentionally un-Episcopalian book will serve as a springboard for discussions, reflection and worship led by the Rev. Helen White with assistance from the spouses. Most of all, we will seek to take a short break from our various roles and remember who we really are:  children of God.   This is a wonderful opportunity for clergy spouses to listen, learn, ask questions; make new acquaintances, friends; and network. This is our only retreat scheduled for 2014, and it won't be the same if you're not there!  For those that have register make sure to look over the Clergy Spouse Conference "Don't Forget"  Checklist


Click here to register for Clergy Spouse Retreat


Bishop Benhase is again offering scholarships to any clergy spouse who needs financial assistance to attend. Please contact the Bishop directly to inquire about the scholarship. 

Columba House 
2nd Priority Deadline for Internship is March 31

Columba House offers two residential programs for young adults who want to live intentionally and serve passionately. The first is a full-time residential internship and the second is a part-time residential fellowship. Interns and Fellows will live together intentionally in community through sharing a house, breaking bread, praying, and learning together. Interns and Fellows will support Columba House's mission to build spiritual community among young adults. There will be leadership opportunities and avenues to explore your gifts. Columba House's residential programs are 10 months from August to June with an option to extend for a 2 year.


The full-time residential internship program is well-suited for those individuals who want to immerse themselves in the life and work of faith, justice, community, and discipleship. Interns will serve in a local congregation and work in the community. The full-time Internship program strikes a balance with the needs of the congregation and the passion of the interns. This is an opportunities to purse your passions and expand your talents. Interns are given a modest stipend and provided housing, health Insurance and training.


The part-time residential fellowship program is tailored to those who wish to live intentionally and serve passionately while working or attending school. Fellows will serve a few hours each week at Columba House in a hospitality context. This is a unique opportunity to live in intentional community and put your faith into practice.


For more information, please contact Columba House Director Rudy Reyes at [email protected] or at 912-236-4279 and visit the Columba House website:

Showing the Flag
Volunteers at Christ Church, Valdosta, re-install an Episcopal flag over the doors into the church. 
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Diocesan Staff                             
The Episcopal Diocese of Georgia