March 31, 2015Volume 5, Number 31
In This Issue


This Sunday's Lections
Easter Sunday
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Columba House

Ministry Expands to Augusta 

A house on Central Avenue in Augusta will now be home to the Diocese of Georgia's second Columba House. The first Columba House opened in Savannah in 2013. The Diocese can open this second intentional community and center for young adult ministry thanks to a generous gift to the Campaign for Congregational Development by an Augusta Episcopalian. Columba House Augusta is located on a busy corridor between Georgia Regents University (GRU) and the GRU Medical School. This work is overseen by the Columba House Augusta Advisory Board. 

Columba House is an Episcopal intentional community where young adults live together sharing a common rule of life. There are two residential programs for young adults--full-time internships and part-time fellowships. 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 second year.

Columba House is named for the 6th century Irish abbot and missionary who founded a monastery in present day Scotland. That community shared the love of God with the Picts who lived around them, leading to the evangelization of Scotland.

Apply for Columba House Augusta

Columba House is now receiving applications for 2015-2016 Interns and Fellows for Columba House in Augusta. For more information, please contact Program Manager Rudy Reyes at [email protected] or at 912-236-4279 and visit the Columba House website.


Diocesan Office Update    

On Maundy Thursday, Bishop Benhase will preside and preach at the Chrism Mass at Trinity, Statesboro at 11 a.m. and in the evening he will make his visit  to St. Alban's, Augusta. 

On Saturday, Bishop Benhase will make his visit to St. Thomas, Savannah for Easter Vigil. On Easter Sunday, Bishop Benhase will make his visit to Christ Church, Savannah. 

Canon Logue is serving this Holy Week at the Episcopal Church in Okatie, SC. 

Diocesan House will be closed for Friday April 3, 2015 for Good Friday and Monday, April 6, 2015 for Easter Monday.

The three pictures above are from today's Chrism Mass at St. Anne's, Tifton. A second Chrism Mass will be held this Thursday at 11 a.m. at Trinity, Statesboro. Please RSVP to the Very Rev. Joan Killian if you will attend that liturgy so that they can prepare for lunch which follows.

Holy Week Across the Diocese

O God, by the passion of your blessed Son you made an instrument of shameful death to be for us the means of life: Grant us so to glory in the cross of Christ, that we may gladly suffer shame and loss for the sake of your Son our Savior Jesus Christ; who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.


We are now walking the way of the cross to the tomb on our way to recalling again the Paschal mystery. We walk this path together. Though in our many congregations, we are united through our liturgies in the worship of our one Lord Jesus Christ.  
To more fully share that united experience, please share with us photos as you are able. Some photos from Palm Sunday are found below in this issue of From the Field. Photos must be in by 9 a.m. Tuesday in Easter week to be included in next week's From the Field. Send pictures to [email protected] or send the web address of your online photo album to that email address. 
Click here to see the 2015 Holy Week and Easter Photo Album, which will grow during this week of worship.

The palms are pictured ready to go at St. James', Quitman, and at right Bishop Benhase presides at the Eucharist during his Palm Sunday visitation to Christ the King, Valdosta.

St. Michael and All Angel's Savannah began the liturgy across the street in Daffin Park and processed to the church.

The Rev. Marcia McRae reads the Palm Gospel at St. John's, Bainbridge, and at right, St. Barnabas', Valdosta, has a labyrinth available for prayer this Holy Week.

St. Patrick's, Pooler

Palm Sunday arrangements at St. Paul the Apostle, Savannah, and Christ Church Frederica on St. Simon's, Island.

St. Thomas, Thomasville

Preparing for the Palm Gospel at St. Paul's, Augusta, on the left and praying the Stations of the Cross on the grounds of St. George's, Savannah, on the right.

The Palm Sunday procession at Christ Church, Savannah, begins in Johnson Square across the street from the historic church.

The Rev. David Rose blesses the palms at St. Luke's, Rincon.

The altars of St. John's, Savannah, and St. Mark's, Brunswick.


Tying Palm Crosses at King of Peace, Kingsland, and distributing palm Crosses in the liturgy at Christ Church, Valdosta.
Diocesan Community Update

The sympathy of the Diocese goes to the Very Rev. William and Canon Mary Willoughby and Family on the death of William's father, William Willoughby II. A Requiem Mass will be held at The Episcopal Church of the Good Shepherd 1512 Blanding St.  Columbia SC on April 7th at 11am with a reception to follow in the Parish Hall. Expressions of sympathy may be given either to The Church of the Good Shepherd or to St. Paul's, Savannah.


There is a group planning to charter group transportation to the Funeral.  The cost will be in the range of $25-$45 depending on the number of people who want to go.  The more who go, the lower the cost.  Anyone interested should contact Kristin Lee at 912-704-3332 as soon as possible.

Spring Rally 2015
Click Above to Watch the 1.5-minute Spring Rally Video
Youth Programs
Register Now for a Super Spring Rally
Have you ever wanted to be a hero?  I mean, have you ever wanted to fly or ever dreamed of being a firefighter?  Many of us have.  Come explore what it takes to be a hero at Spring Rally.

During the weekend, we will talk about what it takes to be a hero, what is our hero's code for following Christ, how to start a movement, and so much more. Because ordinary people can change the world by doing extraordinary things through the love of God as found in Jesus. During this retreat, participants will also get input into next year's youth programs.

Spring Rally will be held May 1-3, 2015 at Honey Creek. 
It is open to those in 6th-12th grade.

This will be an awesome event. On the design team for this event are Roger Speer of St. Luke's Rincon, Father Lonnie Lacy of St. Anne's, Tifton, serving as Spiritual Director, and Caroline Johnson of St. Luke's, Hawkinsville, serving as head of music, and Bishop Benhase will also be stopping by for part of the weekend. If you are interested in helping with this event, please contact Elizabeth Burns.

The Loose Canon
A Holy Week Reflection on Refugee Ministries

How we respond to people who are most in need demonstrates our beliefs more than any statement of faith. On this week when we enter anew into the passion, death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus, I can't help but reflect on these sacred mysteries in the light of having sojourned this Lent with refugees and those working with them. The Episcopal Migration Ministries Pilgrimage to Kenya and Rwanda brought our group face to face with some of the worst of man's inhumanity to man. We met those who suffered in the Congolese War, spent time learning about the Rwandan Genocide, and encountered the victims of gender-based violence finding anew their dignity with the help of others.


Moving past identity as refugees

First, I want to acknowledge briefly the very problem of discussing "refugees" as the term, while helpful, creates an unecessary distance. The term "refugee" is an important political word which seeks to assist persons who "owing to wellfounded fear of being persecuted for reasons of race, religion, nationality, membership of a particular social group or political opinion...." Refugee is a useful political term, but not a theological one. For Christians working in migration ministries, we must push past this identifier to something more essential.

The Image of God
From the first chapter of the first book of Hebrew scripture, we learn that all humans are made in the image and likeness of God (Genesis 1:26-27). The Image of God is a central concept referred to in theology by its Latin name, Imago Dei. This theological truth for Jews and Christians alike grounds any understanding of work with persons displaced by persecution in their essential worth as people made in God's image and likeness. For Christians, Imago Dei is further understood in terms of the deep relationships among the persons of the Trinity which means to be made in God's image is relational and not primarily individual. Jesus taught that all of the Law and the Prophets depend on loving God with all your heart, mind, soul, and strength and loving your neighbor as yourself. Jesus would define neighbor as broadly as possible with his Parable of the Good Samaritan in which the Samaritan, an often hated and mistrusted "other" for Jews living in Israel, was the neighbor to a person in need. For those who seek to follow Jesus, caring for widows, orphans, and yes refugees, is essential to our faith rather than something optional.
The Heart of an Alien

This is certainly seen in the Hebrew scriptures as applying specifically to those forced out of their homeland. "You shall not wrong or oppress a resident alien, for you were aliens in the land of Egypt," (Exodus 22.21) and "You shall not oppress a resident alien; you know the heart of an alien, for you were aliens in the land of Egypt," (Exodus 23.9) are but two of many examples.


The second chapter of Matthew's Gospel tells of the Flight into Egypt in which Jesus' earthly parents fled persecution by King Herod. Jesus earliest memories would have been of living as a refugee and in a synagogue in Egypt where he would have heard the words of the Torah concerning treatments of aliens.

Seeking and Serving Christ
For Episcopalians, this is also found in the 1979 Book of Common Prayer in the Baptismal Covenant. In particular, the two questions, "Will you seek and serve Christ in all persons, loving your neighbor as yourself?" and "Will you strive for justice and peace among all people, and respect the dignity of every human being?" The answer to both being, "I will with God's help."


These questions in the Baptismal Covenant flow from our understanding of the Christian virtue of Charity, or caritas, found in the self-giving agape love of Jesus. That agape love is most fully embodied in the Great Triduum, which is as one prayer celebrated in the three days from Maundy Thursday evening to Easter. As we see most fully how far the love of God extends to all humanity, we are challenged to make that love real in our own lives. While there are many ways this can be lived out, assisting refugees will remain a vital one in a world where roughly 15 million people have fled their homeland to escape persecution and many millions more are internally displaced in their own country due to the same pressures.


What We Accomplish Together

There is no denying that issues of migration are politically thorny. Working with refugees identified by the United Nations and U.S. State Department is more straightforward, but also involves a tangle of issues. Yet for those of us of faith, we can not simply consider these political realities with no reference to our theology which reminds us of our common identity binding us to all other humans.


This Holy Week, the agape love we encounter in the story of Christ's passion, death, and resurrection also points to the need to show that same love to persons suffering persecution. Through thirty affiliates across the country, Episcopal Migration Ministries makes the love of God real each year for more than 5,000 persons resettling in the United States. This is, of course, purely to serve others and without proselytizing or other motives other than assisting people in need, especially in there first months in this country. Through this ministry, the Episcopal Church practices what we preach about seeking and serving Christ in all persons and respecting the dignity of all. On average, our churchwide efforts help 100 persons a week begin a new life. While not every Episcopalian need support this great work of our church personally, we can still appreciate this ministry as an important part of what we do together that none of us could accomplish on our own.


The Rev. Canon Frank Logue, Canon to the Ordinary


All photos above are from our visit to Gihembe Refugee Camp in Rwanda and are by Wendy Karr Johnson.

Hometown Missions
Youth to Serve in Thomasville & Augusta
Hometown Mission's 2015 will be hosted on April 17-19, 2015.  This year we will host one event taking place in two locations, with one in Augusta and one in Thomasville.  The work will take place at Christ Church in Augusta and Good Shepherd in Thomasville. Participant's will engage in projects including gardening, painting, food ministry, working in both Churches and in the local community.  The cost for the week is $50, all inclusive.  Financial Aid Available.  This is a weekend the teens will never forget!

Register Here

For more information go online to You will also find a bulletin insert for your congregation online here: Hometown Missions Bulletin    

Palm Procession Joy

The Palm Sunday begins with the joy of the procession captured above at St. Anne's, Tifton. 

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The Episcopal Diocese of Georgia