July 22, 2014Volume 4, Number 47
In This Issue
Diocesan Office Update
Honey Creek
St. Patrick's, Albany
Green Church Workshop Series
Deacons' Beacon
Register for fall youth events
Summer Camp
VBS photos
Mission Team
Social Media Connections
Web Links


This Sunday's Lections:
Seventh Sunday after Pentecost
Join Our Mailing List

Christ Church, Savannah
Presiding Bishop's Visit
As part of a series of guest preachers during the summer, the presiding bishop visited the Mother Church of Georgia. The Most Rev. Katharine Jefferts Schori preached and Bishop Benhase presided at the Sunday liturgy on July 20. Preaching on Jesus' parable of the weeds growing amidst the wheat, she said, "We have to wait until somebody else makes the judgement not us and we should treat all those plants in the field like wheat." The text of her sermon is online here and a photo album of the liturgy is online here.

Diocesan Office Update    

Bishop Benhase is on vacation and Canon Willoughby is recovering from surgery for a broken shoulder. Canon Logue is in the office, catching up on emails, phone calls and meetings after a week of vacation.

Communications Temporarily Down at Honey Creek
A lightning strike took out telephone and internet communications for our camp and conference center. Repairs are underway, but this is not a quick fix. In the meantime, for summer camp concerns, contact our camp director, Elizabeth Burns by email at [email protected] and for the conference center to [email protected]
St. Francis, Camilla
Standing Committee Has Items Available for Churches
The Standing Committee has been working with the leaders of St. Francis, Camilla that closed earlier this year. They are now making items available. These items range from Prayer Books to pews. Preference will be given to those in the Southwest and Albany Convocations. If you are interested please contact Canon Logue at [email protected] for an inventory and photos of items. 
 The new church for St. Patrick's, Albany, is taking shape this summer.
St. Patrick's, Albany
Money Held in Trust Helps Fund Dream

Money held in trust by the Diocese for nearly forty years is helping to fund the new church at St. Patrick's, Albany. This past Sunday, the Rev. Jay Weldon, Rector of St. Patrick's, announced to the congregation that the sum of a fund invested in 1971 for new mission work in Albany will go to the building fund for the church now under construction.


The Albany Mission Fund

In the 1960s, Angus Alberson dreamed of an Episcopal Church being founded on the growing northwest side of Albany. A longtime member of St. Paul's, Albany, Alberson was also developer working to create the Doublegate development including a country club and homes. He hoped to have a new Episcopal Church for northwest Albany residents and sold the Diocese of Georgia two lots on Old Dawson Road at below market value as a location for that mission. Ten years passed and no church was founded. In 1971, Bishop Albert Rhett Stuart sought permission to sell the land and hold the money in trust for the next mission to be founded in Albany. Alberson and the diocesan Standing Committee agreed and the land sale netted $10,000.


As of 2014, no new church has been founded in Albany. During that time, St. Patrick's moved from its earlier location in a residential part of town to new property on Old Dawson Road. They built what was intended to become their parish hall and have more recently paid off that building and begun construction on the church. Conversations between Weldon and diocesan staff began in 2013 to explore opportunities to aid the church at this time. Bishop Benhase, Canons Willoughby and Logue investigated the founding documents for the trust and discovered that the purpose of the Albany Mission Fund was to fulfill the dream of an Episcopal Church on Old Dawson Road. As the current St. Patrick's is on the same road, close to Alberson's Doublegate community, the new church clearly satisfies the aims of the fund. The Chancellor and Vice Chancellor concurred that the construction meets the trust's objectives.


Going the Second Mile

Last week, the building committee at St. Patrick's met and determined that they have a six-week window in which they can give final approval on the finishing touches for the church now under construction. While the shell of the building, the organ and much of the final work can be funded, an additional $200,000 would be needed to fully pay for everything they hoped to accomplish with the building. The committee announced a Going the Second Mile campaign to close the gap. Then they learned that Alberson's $10,000 fund had grown to $115,023.77 with prudent financial management. 


Weldon told the congregation Sunday of receiving the message of the trust money going to St. Patrick's, "I would be untruthful if I told you I wasn't glad because now Going the Second Mile has gotten easier and I am even more sure now that we will reach our goal." He added that this news wasn't the important message he received saying that having the money from the Albany Fund arrive told him something more, adding, "The message was that God is with us, absolutely and without a doubt, God is with us."


The Board of the Corporation

The Albany Fund is one of funds of the Diocese of Georgia held under the stewardship of the Board of the Corporation, a group of lay persons from across the Diocese elected by convention who manage the diocesan investments together with funds churches invest in that pool. A third of the funds managed are held in custody for congregations of the Diocese. A third are for the support of the mission and ministry of the Diocese. The balance are special purpose, long-term trusts, such as the Byllesby Fund which supports ministry to the poor in Augusta through Christ Church Augusta where Deaconess Byllesby served. Bishop Stuart charged that group with overseeing the $10,000 in 1971 and they stewarded the investments to grow the Albany Mission Fund money to more than $115,000 during that time.

Green Church Workshop Series

A series of workshops on "greening" church buildings and grounds begins this month. Each workshop will include hands-on activities and practical information for improving environmental stewardship at places of worship. A travelling worm composting bin will be on display at all workshops. An optional locally-sourced lunch will be offered for a suggested donation of $5; workshop registration is free. Each workshop will conclude with a listening and reflection activity during lunch on environmental concerns in our area, and how the church might be called and uniquely gifted to respond. Organized by lay and clergy leaders from across the Diocese, the series will culminate in a Green Summit this fall.


To register for one or more of the following workshops, click on the link with the workshop information below. Each workshop has a separate registration.


Saturday, July 26, 9 a.m. - 12 noon
St. Anne's Episcopal Church, Tifton
-Learn about recycling, composting, reducing waste at church events, and the Terra Cycle recycling fundraiser program. Participants will help build a new compost bin using wooden pallets and will paint decorative "walls" for the compost bin.

Register Here



Saturday, August 23, 9 a.m. - 12 noon
Collegiate Church of St. Paul the Apostle, Savannah

-Learn about water and energy conservation. Participants will learn how to build and install rain barrels, and will hear how one parish is transitioning to solar energy and developing a parish sustainability plan.

Register Here



Late September (date TBA)
St. Patrick's and St. Paul's Episcopal Churches, Albany

-Tour the "Food for a Thousand" community garden at St. Patrick's and several new satellite gardens in downtown Albany. Learn how organic gardening improves the earth and the community. Registration details to follow
The Adventure of Your Life!

By Deacon Patricia Marks


My path to the diaconate began almost fourteen years ago, the day I set foot on the labyrinth that Rev. Nancy Mills brought to Christ Church, Valdosta. Poised to begin, I found myself asking a question.


"Lord," I said, "what am I going to do?"


Well, I already knew that! I was about to retire after teaching thirty years at Valdosta State University and travel and write...


The answer came. "Be patient."


"Patient!" I replied. "No way. I'd rather roll up my sleeves and do something!" And then I heard laughter ... really, I did. Later, I learned that the Daughters of the King, those loving, faithful people, were praying for my discernment. I was flabbergasted.


In the process, Fr. Tom Downs predicted I'd be a "preachin', teachin' deacon." So yes, I did end up doing that and more! With the generous and spirit-filled support of Fr. Peter Ingeman and Christ Church, I served under two exceptional Bishops, rejoicing in both diocesan and local ministries-being Formation Council member and Deacon School of Ministry homiletics chaplain; serving, preaching, and visitation; assisting at nursing home services; and leading classes.


Website development for the Deacons; Christ Church sermons and resources; and the Stitchers of Love ministry were challenging and fun. The Stitchers group was my special joy: imagine, a simple ball of yarn lovingly crafted giving comfort as a prayer shawl, wrapping up a Katrina baby, and making Special Olympics athletes smile!


What does the future hold? More "preachin' and teachin'"-not from a pulpit, but in other ways. Last year on November 22, my ordination anniversary, I retired from the active diaconate, but I am still called to love and serve every day.


I invite you all to ask with me, "Lord, what am I going to do?" And then listen . . . listen with all your heart. Because your next step will lead you on the adventure of your life!


Deacon Patricia Marks taught English Literature at Valdosta State University for over 30 years. Soon after her retirement, she responded to a call to the vocational diaconate and was ordained in 2003. She served at Christ Church, Valdosta, for ten years. 

ACS Database Training

The Diocesan House moved its database to the ACS format in January of 2014. Since then we have been actively using it to pulls lists , track groups, and create reports.  We are starting to use it for event registrations; it is an amazing tool!


For those congregations who are not familiar with ACS, BillBridges, the Director of Business Development of ACSTechnologies, will offer an introduction to ACS at the Diocesan Convention ( Nov. 6-8 on Jekyll Island). For those of you who are already using ACS but want to learn better and more effective ways to utilize the system,  ACS is offering the following training opportunities:



In addition to the ACS classes and webinars,  Diocesan staff will be available to provide basic training on the ACS people module later this fall. For more information, please call Libby Thoni on 912.236.4279.  


Is God's will reflected in your will?


Please consider remembering your parish in your estate planning!


Youth Programs
Register Now for Three Upcoming Events
Registration is kicking off now for three upcoming youth events. To see the schedule for this school year, download the PDF: 2014-2015 Youth Events. You can register now for the first three youth events of the fall:

The Acolyte Festival
August 16-17 at St. Paul's, Albany
The Acolyte Festival is open to 3rd through 12th graders. This year's festival will be hosted by St. Paul's, Albany and will be held Saturday and Sunday, August 16 & 17. Participants process during the Sunday morning Eucharist. 

Register online for the Acolyte Festival now!

Fall Gathering
September 19-12 at Honey Creek
This event for 6-12 graders kicks off youth programs at Honey Creek for a new school year. Come enjoy The Creek with singing, games, worship, and more. 
Bishop's Burger Bash
October 11 at St. Anne's, Tifton
Enjoy a fun event on October 11 at St. Anne's Tifton hosted by Bishop Benhase. This event is for 3rd through 12th graders and their families. 
Campers play the game Ships and Sailors at the second session of the middle school Camp St. Peter's at Honey Creek, while below are a rousing game of rock, paper, scissors and evening worship in the chapel.
213 Campers Enjoy Summer Program at Honey Creek
The second session of the middle school Camp St. Peter's wraps up Saturday, concluding a successful year of summer camp ministry. The 213 campers taking part in this summer's camps is the highest number in three years. None of those campers were taking part in a special pilot program for K-2nd grade kids to attend a portion of the camp with one parent.
Camp Director Elizabeth Burns and Spiritual Directors, the Revs. Kevin Kelly and David Rose, are pictured after completing 60 trips down the slip 'n slide in seven minutes. This still did not beat the camp session record of an entire cabin of campers. The bruises have mostly faded. 
 A group photo from the Camp St. Joseph and Mary Session II held last week.
Above are two photos from the first day of the King of Peace, Kingsland, VBS that is taking place this week.

Vacation Bible Schools around the Diocese

We want to share your Vacation Bible School or other camps with the Diocese in photo album collecting pictures of our kid-friendly catechesis taking place around the Diocese this summer. Send your congregation's photo to [email protected].

The photos will be added to a VBS album and used at the diocesan website. You can visit this summer's VBS album online. Some of the photos will be shared here in From the Field. If you create a Facebook or other online album, you may also just send a link to that album to the address above we will copy a selection of photos to the diocesan album. 

Mission Team

5 youth and 2 adults from St. Anne's Tifton's High School mission trip are shown in New Orleans. The group worked with All Souls' Episcopal Church in the Lower 9th Ward of New Orleans on a variety of projects from landscaping a new health clinic to assisting with a day camp. They ended the trip with a visit to Christ Church Savannah for the Presiding Bishop's sermon.
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Diocesan Staff                             
The Episcopal Diocese of Georgia