January 13, 2016Volume 6, Number 20
In This Issue
 
 




This Sunday's Lections
Second Sunday After Epiphany
Isaiah 62:1-5
Psalm 36:5-10
1 Corinthians 12:1-11

John 2:1-11

 
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King of Peace
Discovering the Parish's Identity
Training through the Church Development Institute (CDI) helped King of Peace, Kingsland, discover its identity and impact on the community. Last year, the Rev. Al Crumpton and a group of King of Peace parishioners joined together to complete the CDI Program. They found the tools, planning models, and language so helpful that they incorporated it into their vestry retreat, and eventually their church life to help identity goals and strategies to which have led to both numeric growth and greater depth with exisiting members.

"I feel like we continue to use the CDI methods especially in our vestry meetings. They are good for providing us with a road map. Everybody has input and has ways to engage These models give us a way for everyone to be heard in an engaging way. It gives us a good way to operate as we are looking to conduct the business of the church," says Al Crumpton. He adds that CDI helped the vestry to recognize their own strengths and weaknesses, which provides the team with a more thoughtful approach to planning for the church.
 
Crumpton was called to serve as rector at King of Peace in 2013. The church received parish status in 2010, months before the first rector's departure. In the interim period, it was challenging to find its identity within the new status. However, the training received in CDI helped change that.
 
Creating Pathways Into the Church
CDI encourages congregations to identify those on the periphery of the church, who are named as only "vicariously" connected to the congregation and to identify pathways for those persons to be encouraged into the life of the church.
 
"The model that helped us establish our own identity was the Shape of the Parish Model. How is King of Peace recognized in the community outside of the church? If you asked someone from King of Peace about who we are, they would most likely identify us with the day school (families come to this campus 5 days a week) and with the Boy Scouts (families are on our campus several nights a week)." 
 
After recognizing these vicarious communities, Crumpton invited the Rev. Walter Hobgood, Director of Leadership Ministries for the Diocese of Georgia, to lead a session at the church to create long-term goals. Now the parish uses these goals to guide their annual meetings and vestry meetings to ensure that their conversation stays focused. Hobgood also helped them create a vision statement for the church, "To bring God's children into communion with Christ."
 
Crumpton notes, "It's a work in progress. I don't want anyone to think we have gobs of people attending church just because we've identified these communities and created a vision statement. Yet, we are strategically thinking about how to engage these people because we feel like they are already a part of our family. For instance, we had a low country boil last week (pictured above) and we intentionally invited all of our scouts and had a great turn out! The point is, even if these people are only coming to our facility for the day school or scouts, they're still coming.Growth and depth is a better way to describe our change. We have seen an increase in numbers, but we've also seen more depth as far as commitment of parishioners-People feel like they're in a family when they come here."
 
About CDI
The Church Development Institute is one element of the leadership training brought to the Diocese of Georgia through the Campaign for Congregational Development. CDI's aim is to equip leaders to facilitate a process of transformation, and to build up the capacities and skills of leaders through self awareness of one's personal impact on others and the organization. CDI provides an increased knowledge of theories, methods and processes as a way to assess and understand the behavior and development of the congregation; and to give a safe learning environment where one can practice skills in facilitation, feedback, listening and presenting. 

To find out more online visit: campaign.georgiaepiscopal.org or email the Rev. Walter Hobgood at [email protected]
Diocesan Office Update    

On Sunday, Bishop Benhase will make his visitation to St. Richard's, Jekyll Islands in the morning, and Holy Nativity, St. Simons Island, in the afternoon. 

Canon Logue will preside and preach this Sunday at St. Matthew's, Savannah, and then meet with the Vestry.

Diocesan House is closed for Monday, January 18, in observance of Martin Luther King, Jr. Day. Bishop Benhase and Canon Logue will walk in the Parade on Monday.
February 23 Event for Retired Priests and Spouses
Bishop Benhase has invited the Church Pension Group to bring its Enriching Your Retirement presentation to the Diocese of Georgia on February 23 at Christ Church, Savannah. This offers a unique opportunity to learn about your pension and medical benefits, how to stay healthy, and the programs and services that can support you. You'll also hear how your colleagues are doing as they transition into retirement.
 
Topics will also include the status of The Church Pension Fund, financial and estate planning, and being your own healthcare advocate.
 
Enriching Your Retirementis for beneficiaries of The Church Pension Fund. It will be presented by the Church Pension Group in collaboration with our Chaplain to the Retired, Chris Phelps. Lunch will be provided. Your spouse or partner is highly encouraged to attend with you.
 
To register contact the Bishop's secretary, Gayle Dawson, at [email protected] or call her at (912) 236-4279

You can also learn more by logging into your CPG account 
and visiting www.cpg.org/EYR
Legacy Society
A Planned Giving Program for Every Church
Planned giving programs are crucial to the long-term vitality of our work for God's mission. Thus, they must be a part of every parish's stewardship development plan. They hold enormous potential to help ensure that we will have the mission resources we need for generations to come. To our parishioners, they offer the opportunity to make a final affirmation of their Christian Faith and in the process remind us all that everything in this world belongs to God. Despite the fact that we are in the midst of the largest inter-generational transfer of wealth in U.S. history, fewer than one in ten persons leaves a gift to charity in their will or trust. Research shows why they have never considered it: They haven't been asked. We need to change that trend in the Diocese of Georgia. We need to start asking our parishioners to remember their church in their estate planning process and to offer a simple and convenient vehicle for them to do so.

It is the goal to have an established planned giving program in every parish in the Diocese of Georgia. In order to assist parishes, below is a link to a user friendly guide to establishing a planned giving program as well as a set of sample required documents:


Episcopalians who have included their church in their will may become members of the Legacy Society simply by letting the Diocese know of your planned gift. More information is found online at legacysociety.georgiaepiscopal.org

NOTE: Neither the author, the publisher, nor the Episcopal Diocese of Georgia is engaged in legal or tax advisory service. For advice or assistance in specific cases or whether to make certain a contemplated gift fits well into your overall circumstances and planning, the services of an attorney or other professional advisor should be obtained.
Companion Diocese
Four Teams Headed to Dominican Republic
Currently there are four mission trips from the Diocese of Georgia to the Diocese of the Dominican Republic scheduled for 2016: 
  • January 18-26, Southeastern Convocation to El Carretón to continue work on installing a clean water system; 
  • January 30 - February 6, St, Peter's (Savannah) to San Pedro de Macorís to conduct their third annual optical clinic; 
  • St. Anne's (Tifton) to Las Carreras to continue construction of a church building; 
  • Christ Church (Valdosta) to El Pedregal to continue their classes in knitting and sewing and for light construction and repairs. 
  • Other trips may be scheduled later. 
The Diocese of Georgia maintains a companion relationship with the Diocese of the Dominican Republic, and has been sponsoring mission trips and other activities there since 2001. An overview of the diocese's current and historical activity there is available on the Companion Diocese webpage: gaepiscopal.org/?page_id=19. If you would like more information on joining a mission team or sponsoring a scholarship for a child in an Episcopal school in the Dominican Republic (US $350 per year), contact Julius Ariail, co-chair of the Companion Diocese Commission by email at [email protected] or by phone at (229) 563-0209. 
 
The Diocese of Georgia is a member of the Dominican Development Group , a non-profit organization within the Episcopal Church that raises donations for the endowment fund of the Diocese of the Dominican Republic, helps to plan development work at Episcopal sites there, and coordinates the travel logistics and projects of the approximately 55 mission teams that come from the United States each year. Click the image below for an interactive map with GPS locations and photographs of the Episcopal churches, schools, and other facilities in the Dominican Republic: 


Honey Creek
Apply Now for Summer Camp Staff
Staff applications are now open for prospective camp counselors for the coming 2016 Honey Creek Summer Camp season. If you're a young  adult looking to spend the best summer of your life in a beautiful part of coastal Georgia, while serving God and campers from grades 3 through 12, then we have the perfect opportunity for you. Looks phenomenal on a resume, and is a great way to earn and save money as well. 

This is a great opportunity for anyone with a Life Guarding certificate, challenge course experience, arts and crafts experience, other skill sets, or anyone looking to hone their leadership abilities. Tell any of your friends you believe would make a good addition to our team at Honey Creek summer camp! 

The link to apply is honeycreek.org/staff/, staff application deadline is the last day of February, Monday the 29th. If you have any further questions at all please email the Summer Camp Director, Thomas Greneker, at [email protected] .
Still Time to Register for Young Adult Retreat
This winter, college students and young adults from around the Diocese will gather at Honey Creek for a winter retreat on January 22-24. This retreat will enable younger Episcopalians to meet others from around South Georgia, while giving one another the opportunity to enjoy the beauty and peaceful retreat center of the Diocese of Georgia. 

The cost of the weekend is $118. Scholarship are available. Those seeking a scholarship will need to contact Program Manager Rudy Reyes at (912) 236-4279 prior to registration. 

Registration closes next Tuesday January 19th


If you are interested in joining us for this event. Please contact The Rev. Michael Chaney at [email protected]
"Let the same mind be in you that was in Christ Jesus."
-Philippians 2:5
Lenten Retreat Opens a Door to Lasting Change
The Gospel offers the possibility of metanoia, a change of mind and heart. This Lent, take an overnight retreat at Honey Creek to delve into just how that change occurs and to begin to effect that change in your mind and your heart. Discover the grounds for a life of practiced and lived Gospel, grounded not in the demands of daily life but in the One that calls us each by name. 

The Rev. Liam Collins is teaming up again with Canon Frank and Victoria Logue to offer a Lenten Retreat at Honey Creek. The 2016 Lenten Retreat will meet February 19 at 5 p.m. and conclude by 2 p.m. on the 20th. Find the deep connections that will permit your life to be lived not out of a sense of never being or having enough, but in the power and presence of God. Come expecting God to be present to you.
 
The rates for the conference including three meals are: Lodge 1 Single $144, Lodge 1 Double $99.50, Lodge 2 Single $133, Lodge 2 Double $94, Cottage $90, and Campers and Commuters $64. Click here to register online with Honey Creek.
Click on the video linked above to find out more about how Cursillo can deepen your faith.

Cursillo Weekend Strengthens Your Faith
Cursillo is a short-course in Christianity which equips Christians for leadership
and service to change the world for Christ through:
  • an opportunity to grow in faith and in spirituality
  • a deeper understanding of the teachings of Jesus and how we can serve Him.an experience of living and sharing with others in a loving and caring Christian community and realizing that this can be extended into our own environment
  • a continuing community that gives support and encouragement to help Christians carry out their Baptismal Vows.
Cursillo includes a three-day weekend that begins on Thursday evening and concludes on Sunday. The weekend includes fifteen talks, five meditations and a Eucharist every day. 

The Cursillo weekend is not a retreat, but an opportunity to meet clergy and laity seeking to strengthen our faith. It provides an environment to experience the reality of the gift of God's love through shared prayer, individual meditation, worship, study, fellowship, laughter, tears, and unconditional love.

The Next Cursillo Weekend is February 25-28 at Honey Creek Conference Center.
Sponsors: Application deadline is February 10. Applications available through the Cursillo Website: 
http://cursillo.georgiaepiscopal.org 
Walk with the Diocese in MLK Parade
The Diocese of Georgia will once again sponsor a group to march in Savannah's Martin Luther King Jr. Day Parade. The group meets Monday, January 18th at 9 a.m. on East Broad Street in Savannah between East Jones and East Gaston. Just look for the float with the Episcopal Church's shield on it. We are # 41 & 42 so our group will start and finish early. 

The parade ends at St. Matthew's Church on Martin Luther King Blvd. where we will go straight to the Parish Hall for prayers, singing led by Gabriel Lawrence, a reflection by Jonelle Gordon and A.L. Addington, during our lunch time. We estimate we will conclude, including lunch, by 12:20 p.m. 

This is always a very meaningful event and you do not have to be in the Savannah Convocation to take part. For more information, contact the Rev. Jamie Maury by email at [email protected] or Facebook Message or call him at (912) 659-8585 .
Youth Programs
Apply Now for Happening - January 29-31
Happening #96 will be held at Honey Creek January 29-31, 2016, and is open to those in grades 10 - 12. During a Happening weekend, participants worship, play, sing, and talk about God's place in their lives. They make new friends who share similar concerns and questions - a reassuring discovery. A teenager who acts as "rector" leads the weekend with the help of a staff consisting mostly of young people. Some staff members give challenging talks, after which there's time for discussion and activity. Together, the staff and participants share in an exploration of the impact of Christian faith in their daily lives. Happeners who attend a weekend for their first time are called "Candidates." To be a Candidate, one must have completed the 9th grade and have not begun college, and fill out the application linked below. For more information on Happening, please visit the Georgia Happening website.

Happening costs $100 to attend, and financial assistance is available. Those seeking a scholarship, will need to contact our Interim Missioner for Youth, Rebekah Stewart, at (912) 236-4279 prior to registration. 

Integrity Georgia Meets January 30 in Waycross
The first Integrity Georgia meeting of 2016 will be held on Saturday, January 30 at Grace Episcopal Church in Waycross. We are looking forward to rejuvenating our group.

Integrity Georgia continues to be an important voice for the LGBT community in the Diocese of Georgia. This summer the Supreme Court granted the legal right for same sex couples to marry in all 50 states, the General Convention of the Episcopal Church gave bishops permission to allow same sex marriages and Bishop Benhase gave his approval for same sex marriages in the Diocese of Georgia. These are huge steps but until all LGBT people are openly welcomed in all churches in all positions and seen as equals our journey is not over. If you are interested in attending please contact Clayton Gagn'e-Thomas for more information (912) 655-6986. 

Saturday, January 30, 2016
12 noon - 2 pm

Grace Episcopal Church, 401 Pendleton St., Waycross, GA
Annual Feast of Lights Celebration at St. Athanasius, Brunswick. 

Christmastide and Epiphany in Photos
Churches across the Diocese continued the celebration through the 12 Days of Christmas, closing out on January 6, the Feast of the Epiphany. The full album of photos is online here: Advent, Christmas, and Epiphany 2015-2016
St. Peter's Savannah closed out Christmastide on the Feast of the Epiphany with service, supper, shenanigans (acting out the various parts of the Christmas song The Twelve Days of Christmas), The Three Kings, and The Burning of the Christmas Greens.

Three Kings standing ready to process and sing at Christ Church Savannah.

Parishioners share the Light of Christ during the Epiphany liturgy at St. Anne's, Tifton, which included Welcoming the Magi, Declaration of Easter, and Blessing of the Chalk for use in marking doorways of homes.

Canon Dedra Bell-Wolski baptizes a child as Deacon Carlene Taylor, Bishop Benhase, and the parents look on at Christ Church, St. Marys.

The altar at Grace, Waycross. 


Epiphany Program at St. Luke's, Hawkinsville. 
Notice to Those with our Health Savings Accounts
For those priest and lay employees enrolled in the High Deductible health insurance plans, you should have received a letter about the transfer from Benefit Wallet to HealthEquity for the Health Savings Accounts (HSAs). Please submit your transfer forms to have the funds transferred from your existing account to the new savings account.
 
You can find the letter received here for further instructions. You must submit the form by January 29th for BenefitWallet funds to be transfered. Additionally, please access the FAQs to find out more information about the transfers.
 
For administrators funding accounts, please note that you'll submit a remittance form and check to CPG for processing. A new form is being developed and should be available soon. For question about funding accounts, please contact Canon Willoughby at [email protected]
Prayers for Weekly Liturgies
Our one-year prayer cycle combines prayers for every congregation in the Diocese of Georgia with prayers for our ecumenical partners and for our Companion Diocese of The Dominican Republic. The 52 weekly prayers are available in one document: http://gaepiscopal.org/docs/oneyearprayercycle.pdf 

Prayers for January 10-16
In our diocesan cycle of prayer, we pray for our congregations in Albany-St. John & St. Mark's , St. Patrick's, and St. Paul's. We also pray for our ecumenical partners in Albany, the Lutheran Church of Our Savior and St. Teresa Catholic Church. In our companion diocese of the Dominican Republic, we pray for St. James the Apostle (Santiago Apóstol) in Angelin.

Prayers for January 17-23
In our diocesan cycle of prayer, we pray for our congregation in Americus, Calvary, and for our ecumenical partners in Americus especially St. Mary's Catholic Church and for St. Andrew's Lutheran Church in Plains. In our companion diocese of the Dominican Republic, we pray for the congregations in Azua-Reconciliation (La Reconciliación) and St. George (San Jorge).
Bautismo

Family members surround the Rev. Charles Todd in a photo following the Spanish language Mass at St. Paul the Apostle Savannah. He baptized a child on the Feast of the Baptism of our Lord. The Spanish language liturgy at St. Paul's is a full part of the parish with parishioners serving on vestry and occasional bi-lingual liturgies on feast days with the congregations worshiping together.
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Sincerely,                                       
            
Diocesan Staff                             
The Episcopal Diocese of Georgia