South Carolina and the faithful remnant

July 15, 2012

Bp Mark Lawrence has written his diocese about General Convention. Let us pray for them and for all of the remaining faithful within the Episcopal Church.
This is a prayer I wrote in March 2006, now adapted.

Dear Jesus,
Our hands are drooping, and our knees are weak.
Founder and Perfecter of our faith, turn our eyes to Your cross.

Help us to always pray and not lose heart.
Founder and Perfecter of our faith, turn our eyes to Your cross.

Step into our fallen flesh and fill our empty spirits.
Founder and Perfecter of our faith, turn our eyes to Your cross.

Lift up our hands and strengthen our knees.
Founder and Perfecter of our faith, turn our eyes to Your cross.

We cry to You day and night.
Founder and Perfecter of our faith, turn our eyes to Your cross.

Bring peace and holiness to the body of Christ.
Founder and Perfecter of our faith, turn our eyes to Your cross.

Do not delay in Your justice.
Founder and Perfecter of our faith, turn our eyes to Your cross. Help the Episcopal Diocese of South Carolina and all of the faithful remnant within the Episcopal Church to remain hidden in You, Christ Jesus, that we may be presented holy in God’s sight, without blemish and free from accusation. Amen.
Luke 18:1-8, Romans 12:2, 12, 13, Colossians 1:22, 3:3

Mark 6:7-13

July 15, 2012

And he called the twelve to himself, and began to send them out two by two, and gave them power over unclean spirits. (Mark 6:7)
      Holy Spirit, show us clearly where Jesus is sending each of us and who our companions are to be. Please give us your power to recognize and overcome every evil spirit we encounter.

He commanded them to take nothing for the journey except a staff–no bag, no bread, no copper in their money belts–but to wear sandals, and not to put on two tunics. (Mark 6:8-9)
      Jesus, please work in our hearts so that we will trust you for your provision. Keep us from getting bogged down by all the stuff we accumulate.

Also he said to them, “In whatever place you enter a house, stay there till you depart from that place. And whoever will not receive you nor hear you, when you depart from there, shake off the dust under your feet as a testimony against them. Assuredly, I say to you, it will be more tolerable for Sodom and Gomorrah in the day of judgment than for that city!” (Mark 6:10-11)
      Father, we long for your steadiness so that we stick to the assignment you have given us. Please help us recognize when it is time to move to a new assignment. Thank you.

So they went out and preached that people should repent. (Mark 6:12)
      Holy Spirit, please help us go forth preaching repentance with the love of Jesus.

And they cast out many demons, and anointed with oil many who were sick, and healed them. (Mark 6:13)
      Jesus, bless the ministry of healing and deliverance throughout this diocese. Thank you.

A word received: Remember — I AM in charge. It is my church, my Bride. Look to me for help and direction.

Sunday: 148, 149, 150 * 114, 115; Joshua 1:1-18: Acts 21:3-15: Mark 1:21-27
HC: 85 or 85:7-13; Amos 7:7-15; Ephesians 1:1-14; Mark 6:7-13
Monday: 25 * 9, 15; Joshua 2:1-14: Rom. 11:1-12 Matt. 25:1-13

      Notes from the Front Line

***** Date: Sat, 14 Jul 2012
From: Nigel Mumford
Subject: Daily quote
      To live with constant pain can get you down or it can remind you of Christ. Your choice.

***** Date: Sat, 14 Jul 2012
From: Susan Plaske
Subject: Cathedral Prayer Table Wed 7-11-12, Lovely Day – Dcn Plaske, Jana Lingo(first time), Beth Collum, Dcn.Jill, Paula Sutcliff, Tricia Mccrossan
Dave – For Bonnie and friends in PA for healing
Retha and Loretta for Retha’s ex husband Dewitt in hospital, coma – for healing
+ B Kathy – Homeless, hungry asked for money for lunch . Prayed for her and gave her lunch money.
Lisa – strength, wisdom and a baby.
Steve – Peace for the world
Myrna would have been 52nd anniversary, husband passed away this year
Frank – Thanks for son Ben doing well in California.
Prayed for Delegates of the General Convention

***** Date: Sat, 14 Jul 2012
From: Darlene Chesnut
Subject: Christ Church Schenectady, Albany St. Sorry I forgot to write down who got a cross, Darlene Chesnut and Mark Pasko
Bob- prayers for his parents who have passed on
Tasha- who told us she was drunk and who at first gave us a false name but said she couldn’t lie to God; prayed that she could be reunited with her kids. She then blessed us!
Rishi-who was working on rehabbing the house across the street, wanted prayers for his wife, Filisia, for health and her schooling to go well.
Miguel-After Rishi came for prayer this fellow worker came and asked for a change in his attitude and prayers for his brother.
Louis-we prayed for blessings on his day. He is from Buffalo and has been 2 days at the mission.
Sahki and Siddiu (2 young brothers)
Shirley-asked prayer for her knee sore it is swollen and painful to walk, and she can’t get another shot for it yet.
Sharon(she showed us her cross from before) prayed for her protection and for her to be a blessing-she gave us a gift of a sample conditioner which will be given to City Mission!!
Tiara-teenage girl on a bike-she wanted prayer that she would get to go home today.

***** Date: Sat, 14 Jul 2012
From: Deb Tatro
Subject: St James Prayer Table Report 7-13 Bunny Morgan & Deb Tatro. 95 & Sunny
+ indicates a cross was given
+ Mia – for her mother & her brother Kyare
+ Kyare – for Pop – Pop
Adriele. – Jason for strength & guidance
Young lady who didn’t want to stop – pray for her father
Tonya – pray for everything
Mary – for both the couples & women’s Cursillo and the candidates.
Joanne – Charles for recovery from bladder cancer surgery
Octavia – Pray for support during her trying divorce.
Bunny – no pain & mercy for her dog Shauna who is failing

***** Date: Sat, 14 Jul 2012
From: Diocese of Albany
Subject: Diocesan Update

            Report by the Albany Bishops and Deputation
      on the 77th General Convention of The Episcopal Church

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

We have just returned from the 77th General Convention in Indianapolis, where we spent nine full days debating and acting on several hundred resolutions covering a wide variety of topics. While much of the attention of the outside world was focused on AO49 (Authorize Liturgical Resources for Blessing Same-Gender Relationships), we were dealing with several other resolutions that could have been quite damaging to the sacramental life of the Church and The Episcopal Church’s relationship with the wider body of Christ. Albany’s Bishops and Deputies worked especially hard in several areas.

Proposals to delete Holy Baptism as a requirement to receive Holy Communion: There were several proposals on what is referred to as the “Open Table,” or “Open Communion.” The Albany Deputation testified to the historic teaching of the Church. Fortunately the General Convention upheld that teaching, soundly defeating the “Open Table” resolutions.

Proposals to delete Confirmation as a requirement to serve in leadership positions in the Church: Several proposals would have rendered the Sacrament of Confirmation unnecessary. We told our story, including how each candidate for Confirmation in our diocese is asked to write our Bishop, sharing their faith and explaining why they want to be confirmed. We shared how Confirmation in our diocese emphasizes Christian formation, which culminates with the Bishop laying on hands and inviting the Holy Spirit to fill each candidate, “empowering them for the Lord’s service.” The General Convention upheld the importance and necessity of Confirmation.

Proposals for Denomination Health Plan: The General Convention in 2009 set a vision to require each Diocese to participate in a health plan administered by The Episcopal Church. The principle and vision include lowering health care costs while insuring that church employees have access to affordable health insurance. We support the principle and the vision, but we have learned in the past three years that health care costs vary by region and locality. We joined forces with several other dioceses in an effort to get this General Convention to overturn or provide relief from a federalized and mandated program, but unfortunately were unsuccessful. More details will be shared in the future with parishes.

Clergy Discipline: The General Convention in 2009 completely overhauled “Title IV,” the clergy discipline canon. The result was a highly complex canon, and one that denies accused clergy certain “due process” rights which are well established in public law. As with any complex piece of legislation there is usually a period of revision and clarification. In fact the Diocese of Albany in its 2011 Convention formally recommended that General Convention make a study of the new disciplinary canon and make needed amendments. While some changes were adopted, the General Convention did mandate further study and evaluation in the coming triennium leading to the 2015 Convention. In the meantime however, some of the most troubling aspects of “Title IV” remain in effect.

Same-Gender Blessings: As indicated in an earlier Diocesan Update, (A049) the resolution authorizing a liturgy for the blessing of same gender relationships did pass. The passage of this resolution was very troublesome to all of us holding the traditional understanding of marriage as that special covenantal relationship between a man and woman as husband and wife, “established by God in creation” and adorned by Jesus by “His presence and first miracle at a wedding in Cana of Galilee.”
As difficult and damaging as the passage of A049 is, it could have been a whole lot worse. While authorizing the study and use of “Liturgical Resources I: I Will Bless You and You Will Be A Blessing,” it can only be used with the permission of the Bishop exercising ecclesiastical authority. This liturgical resource DOES NOT have the blessing of Bishop Love or the Standing Committee and therefore will not be authorized for use in the Diocese of Albany. The resolution states: “That no bishop, priest, deacon or lay person should be coerced or penalized in any manner, nor suffer any canonical disabilities, as a result of his or her conscientious objection to or support for the 77th General Convention’s action with regard to the Blessing of Same-Sex Relationships�”

The service for blessing a same-sex relationship is being published as a stand alone document and will not be added to the Book of Common Prayer, The Book of Occasional Services, or Enriching our Worship. For further information concerning A049, please see the Albany Bishop’s and Deputation’s earlier report/statement found on the diocesan website at .

Anglican Communion Covenant: Much of The Episcopal Church seemed ready to declare the proposed Anglican Covenant dead. The Albany Deputation urged the Church to remain engaged. While we would have preferred stronger support, we were part of the voice that prevented disengagement.

The Reading of Holy Scripture: The Diocese of Pennsylvania put forward a resolution to invite every member of the Church to read the entire Bible in the year 2013. The resolution was adopted with our support. We are encouraged by this initiative, and in the coming months we will be gathering ideas for our participation.

Proposals Calling for Structural Reform of the Church: Over 30 resolutions were submitted calling for major structural reform in The Episcopal Church to include such things as selling The Episcopal Church Headquarters at 815 Second Ave. New York, and relocating to another less expensive location. While nothing definitive was agreed on at General Convention, a special committee appointed by the Presiding Bishop and President of the House of Deputies will be working over the next Triennium to come up with a proposal outlining a plan for restructuring The Episcopal Church. Depending on how this is done, it could be a very positive thing, or it could lead to possible changes in the organization and governance of the Church that could be very problematic.

The Episcopal Church Budget for 2013-2015: A total budget of $111.5 million was passed. Approximately 51% is directed toward Program; 31% for Administrative and Corporate;, and 18% for Canonical requirements. Finances and funding was a huge concern impacting all of the spending initiatives that were presented at General Convention. The budget is based on a 19% assessment to each diocese, plus other investment income.

      As indicated earlier, we had several hundred resolutions to deal with at General Convention. The ones mentioned above were among the more important ones. Many significant changes in theology and liturgy were proposed, and some were adopted. Throughout our time at General Convention we tried to uphold and speak for the traditional teaching of the church. While there were some disappointments, there were also some successes. It is our prayer that the Lord will continue to guide and lead the Diocese of Albany as we move forward in the power of the Holy Spirit, living out and proclaiming God’s truth as best we understand it, sharing the Gospel of Jesus Christ, offering ourselves as a channel of His love, mercy and healing grace.

      We want to thank all the people of the Diocese of Albany for your faithfulness and for your prayers and support. They were and are a real blessing in the difficult times in which we find ourselves.

Faithfully Yours in Christ,
The Rt Rev William Love      The Rt Rev. Daniel Herzog
The Ven. David Collum      The Rev. Cn. Robert Haskell
The Rev. Scott Garno      The Rev. John Scott
Elizabeth Strickland      Sue Ellen Ruetsch
Deborah Fish      Richard Carroll

Albany Intercessor

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