This is the first issue of the EACA newsletter. Please take time to browse through and give feedback if you would like. This newsletter will be a place that information for clergy and EACA members will be passed on to know what is going on around our community. If you have anything you would like to post in the newsletter please email Fr. Rob Irwin at email@example.com . God bless.
CONGRATULATIONS to our newly ordained Deacons
Rev. Aaron Munson and Rev. Jon Kitto
May God bless the both of you with much success in your ministry as you serve the community around you.
Clergy support groups
As the bishop doing ministry in the area of clergy oversight and support, I will be forming support groups in the coming week for EACA clergy and those in formation. Our intention is that each of you can connect with those in your support group, get to know them, pray for, and learn to support each other. It is easy to fade into the world and isolation in a scattered denomination such as ours, and so many of you feel isolated and need more support. So, I ask you to engage in this process with us, and to be open to growing closer to your EACA brothers and sisters. Bishop Rusty and Scott will be providing conference call capabilities and call in information so that each group can have a monthly call. The coordinator of your group can be in touch with him to get the needed call in numbers, and will arrange a time for a call with you. Bishop Stephen, who consecrated Bishop Craig, the founding bishop of our denomination, often spoke of the church being an additional and central sacrament. By this he meant that we become the body of Christ for each other, and that real presence of God is special and irreplaceable. So, let us move toward being sacrament for each other. Peace and blessings!
Contacting Bishop David: feel free to call Bishop David at any time at 207 751 5690, or email him at firstname.lastname@example.org
From Bishop David
As some of you know, I am recovering from surgery on a ruptured achilles tendon. Confined to home, unable to walk or put any weight on one leg, my life for the coming weeks has changed abruptly.
I have been in this place before…the place of being forced, through physical limitations or illness to stay still…to be limited, to be frustrated in my desires to be active. I remember when we first moved to Maine some 20 years ago and I was between jobs in Boston and Maine, that I had time to just be; that I discovered that there was a David inside, a little David, too, that I had not spent much time with in recent years. I remember vividly the pancreatitis in 1995 and the ensuring surgeries and recovery for months, the times I wanted God to just take me, the times when I felt desperate to live, the importance of other’s visiting me, praying with me, and bring the Eucharist to me; but above all the growing awareness of God’s presence.
Crisis has a way of opening us to God, of teaching us things. There is a gift that comes with this time of recuperation (or can). Don’t get me wrong…following my surgery, I have been in pain, crabby and there have been some dark days. However, the gift is that when I am stripped of my roles, my busy-ness, there is more room for God. If I allow it.
Sometimes, we don’t realize how far we have grown away from God, or how much closer we desire to be to God until we are still and find that quiet place within, where we need God, and where we are renewed. The journey of being a Christian is one of returning to the well time and time again. The miracle of our faith is this renewal…this ability to return to God, to be forgiven, to know that we are loved unconditionally, regardless of how we might feel about ourselves, or how we perceive that others feel about us. It is from this unconditonal grace and love that we are empowered to be vessels of God’s love for the world. We are called to carry this love to the world; it desperately needs God and needs to know a God that loves, heals and renews.
In Isaiah we hear: “Listen to me….you that seek the Lord. Look to the rock from which you were hewn, and to the quarry from whcih you were dug….Lift up your eyest to the heavens, and look at the earth beneath: for the heavens will vanish like smoke, the earth will wear out like a garment, and those who live on it will die like gnats: but my salvation will be forever, and my deliverance will never be ended.” (51:2, 5-6).
I invite you to join me in the appeal that we hear in Romans 12: I appeal to you therefore, brothers and sisters, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship. Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your minds, so that you may discern what is the will of God – what is good and acceptable and perfect.” (vs. 1-3). Let us all present ourselves to God, and to each other. Amen. Bishop David.
Here is what is going on with your fellow EACA clergy:
Deacon Jon Kitto has been keeping busy. In July he served as the chaplain for the Waycross Episcopal Camp’s “Leaders in the Community” session for 14-18 year old teens. During the week the 22 campers, counselor and, yes, the chaplain, built a viewing area at Brown County State Park, sang songs and visited with residents of the Brown County Senior Living Center and helped the Brown County Library with a book sale and landscaping project.
This Fall the Beacon Center (GLBT Community Center) and Deacon Jon (as clergy with the EACA) will sponsor a workshop, open to all entitled “Living Wills and Advance Directives…What You MUST know.” Attendees will have the opportunity to actually execute those documents at the workshop.
And finally, Jon has been nominated to the Board of Directors for The Indiana University Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgendered Alumni Association. (an official group of Indiana University).
Keep up the great work you are doing to serve the people of God.
“Small things with great love…
It is not how much we do, but how much love we
put into the doing. And it is not how much we give,
but how much love we put into the giving.
To God there is nothing small.” -Mother Theresa
The Website is in the process of being updated. This is an important tool for us as it is our connection to the community. Please check it out from time to time. www.eaca.org
Check These Out
Whosoever – an online magazine for Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, and Transgender Christians.