Diocesan Life for June 2011

If you would like the issue in a .pdf, you can download it here. It's 2MB:

Renewal Assembly II: Focusing on God's Blessings, Saturday, June 11

RenewalAssembly “The best part of the day was that we got together to share our ideas,” commented a participant at the February 19 Renewal Assembly. “Not only must we learn to listen to God but we must listen to each other.  Hopefully, there will be more opportunities to have events such as this one.”

The Congregational Renewal Committee heard comments and requests such as this following the February 19 Assembly and has scheduled the next event for the Eve of Pentecost, Saturday, June 11, 9:00 AM to 1:30 PM, at eight new sites across the diocese. The day’s organizing theme will be:  Focusing on God’s Blessings.

Building on the many positive comments and suggestions about the video, the small group discussion, and the time for prayer, the basic framework for the assembly will remain the same.  The committee also heard  the request that there be more lay leadership in the video and in the program. 

In Focusing on God’s Blessings, the day will introduce the process of “asset mapping,” which is a recommended resource in the document From Risks to Opportunities (R2O).  R2O suggests that “[w] hen the starting point is the recognition of the abundance of God’s gifts and talents, the discussion the congregation can ‘find an exciting, new and positive energy to break out of the negative cycles of need, dependency, and the inaction in congregations sometimes experience.’ ”  (See Luther K. Snow, The Power of Asset Mapping: How Your Congregation Can Act on its Gifts, Alban Institute: 2004, pg. xiii.)

The eight sites will be:  Church of the Redeemer, Sayre; St. Paul’s, Montrose; Good Shepherd, Scranton; St. Stephen’s Pro-Cathedral, Wilkes-Barre; St. Peter’s, Hazelton; St. Mary’s, Reading; St. Stephen’s, Whitehall; and, St. George’s, Hellertown.  The host sites were chosen for easy travel, parking, and adequate accommodations.  A luncheon will be provided with a “free will” offering to offset local expenses. 

Registration is open on www.diobeth.org.  The registration is found by clicking on the “Register for Diocesan event” on the right column of the homepage.  Registration closes on June 1.  All registrants will be assigned to the most appropriate host site.

Download the entire flyer in .pdf form here: Download PR II Trifold

Trinity, West Pittston to host MUSICare Project Concert

[From Fr. John Major]

On Wednesday, December 8 at 5:15 p.m., children from infant through age 5 and their parent or other adult caregiver will have a chance to experience the joy of  making music in a playful, age-appropriate way.  The event will include a free demonstration of  Music Together ®, a relaxed music program where infants, toddlers, preschoolers and the grown-ups who love them learn to share and appreciate songs, rhythms and simple instruments in a fun, interactive way.  Santa Claus will also stop by for a sing-a-long and visit with the children.
The evening of fun and music is free and open to the public, but reservations are requested.  Trinity Episcopal Church is located at the corner of Spring Street and Montgomery Avenue in West Pittston.  For more information or reservations, call 570-654-3261.
For more information on Trinity's MUSICare Project featuring Music Together visit www.trinityepiscopalchurchwestpittston.org.

Free Refresh/Retreat Day for Charity Knitters and Crocheters

[From Mother Laura Howell]

Greetings, all you crafty folks!

For quite  a while, some of us have been getting together in a group called "Crafting Your Prayers," where we lovingly and prayerfully
create various sorts of items. Currently, we're involved in a charity knitting and crocheting group at Knitter's Edge in Bethlehem. The St.
Francis Center for Renewal on Bridle Path Rd. in Bethlehem has offered us a quiet day, as a thank you for all that people have been doing for the needy in the community.

That day will be May 24, from 10:00-3:00. In the morning, we will gather to learn a new knitting or crocheting technique (the items will
be made for Turning Point Shelter). After a break for lunch, the afternoon session will have some spiritual/meditative reading and reflection while we work on our handcrafts.

The Retreat Day is free, but I do need to have you register, so we know how many rooms we need. Send a note to lauramh@gmail.com.

The Renewal Center has also offered to make lunch for us at a cost of $10. The chef wants to give us a special lunch (I can tell you that
when he says special, he means it!), but we need to let him know numbers in advance so he can order food. If you would like to attend
the day and share lunch, please let me know no later than Sunday, May 16. Later than that, check with me.

Hope to see some of you there.

Thank you to all of you who have made chemo caps, caps for the homeless, baby blankets, hats and scarves for seafarers, and so many
other things that bring comfort into difficult lives.



(The Rev.) Laura Thomas Howell, Obl.S.B.
Trinity Episcopal Church

“We have what we seek. We don’t have to rush after it. It was there all the time, and if we give it time it will make itself known to us.”
T. Merton

"The Gospel According to Disgust" E@ster Term Residency

E@STER TERM at The Cathedral Church of the Nativity

The Rev. Matthew Moretz, the creator of Fr. Matthew Presents: www.frmatthewpresents.com, will present "The Gospel According to Disgust"

The latest frontier in psychology is the study of disgust.  Different than fear, disgust is the aversion to certain icky things that abound in our world. Thanks to being married to a psychologist, Fr Matthew has discovered that our new scientific knowledge of disgust has a powerful resonance with the wisdom of the Christian faith.  In fact, some of our discoveries have been prefigured by Holy Scripture and church practices!  Fr Matthew will introduce you to the study and treatment of disgust, and provide a fresh, if somewhat disgusting, look at our entire Christian tradition.

E-Residency course is held Wednesdays from April 14 to May 12 at

7:00 PM in Sayre Hall Dining Room.

posted by Kat Lehman

Outward Bound offering free trips for OPERATION IRAQI FREEDOM and OPERATION ENDURING FREEDOM veterans

posted by Kat Lehman

H/T to the Delaware National Guard Family Readiness Coordinator, Richard Elliott, for bringing this to my attention.

If you have recent vets of OPERATION IRAQI FREEDOM (OIF) or OPERATION ENDURING FREEDOM (OEF) in your congregations, you might want to make them aware of this opportunity.


Seeking veterans nationwide for all expenses paid expeditions

To Enroll:       Please call 1-866-669-2362 ext 8387 (VETS)


Outward Bound, a 45-year old non-profit outdoor, adventure-education organization, is looking for OEF and OIF Veterans, interested in participating in fully- funded reintegration wilderness expeditions. Adventures are physically, mentally and emotionally stimulating and work to build the self-confidence, trust, and communication skills necessary to successfully return to their families and communities following war time service. Goals of the program are to provide a positive outdoor experience for military veterans that will enable them to experience the healing benefits of the natural world and benefit from quality environmental education.

Who: Available to all OEF or OIF Veterans who were deployed to Iraq and/or Afghanistan, pending medical screening

What: A 5-7 day Wilderness Expedition: may include backpacking, rock climbing, canoeing, dogsledding, sailing, sea kayaking and white water rafting

When: Dates available year-round

Where: Wilderness locations include: California, Colorado, Maine, Maryland, Minnesota, New Jersey,  Pennsylvania, Utah, Oregon, Washington, Alabama, and Florida

How: What sets Outward Bound apart is that the goal is personal growth. The wilderness and the skills learned to deal with it are simply a vehicle for growth.

Cost: All expenses paid! Veterans will not be responsible for cost of expedition including round-trip stateside transportation to course site. Funding provided by the Military Family Outdoor Initiative Project, a joint project of the Sierra Club and The Sierra Club Foundation.

Biggest, Boldest, Best Block Party Around

posted by Kat Lehman

Check out the Block Party "A Celebration of Gifts" this Saturday, September 19th from 10:00 A.M. to 4:00 P.M. on Market Street between New and Center Streets in Bethlehem. Trinity, Bethlehem has been actively planning this event in conjunction with other churches, social agencies, community groups and the city government for about 8 months.

There are over 30 groups performing including the Bethlehem Bagpipe Band, Trinity's own Singing Priests, musicians and singers from Holy Infancy, Moravian Academy band and choirs, the O'Grady-Quinlan Academy of Irish Dance, storytelling by Mayor Callahan and MANY, MANY MORE! There are also games and crafts for kids plus food and lots of fun. What an awesome way to spend Saturday!

Come celebrate!!

St. Gabriel's, Douglassville Youth Events

Posted by Kat Lehman
Tuesdays to Serve
In response to the teens at St Gabriel’s saying that they miss one another over the summer, the increased need in our community and the desire to “do the work of Jesus”, St Gabriel’s Youth Ministry has started a Summer program for youth in grades 6 through graduating seniors.  This program is called “Tuesdays to Serve”  teens are dropped off in the morning, while parents are on their way to work, they bring a brown bag lunch, and spend the day doing mission work, in prayer and in fellowship.  Some of the mission projects scheduled for the summer include working around the church campus, visiting our neighbors at the Villa at Morlaton, assisted and independent living facility, cooking the Community Meal for those in need in Birdsboro, and possibly working with the Humane Society and the Greater Berks Food Bank.  If you would like more information about the program please contact Kim Rowles, youth ministry coordinator, at youth@stgabriels.us.

Teens and Tech Seminar
Do you know what social networking is all about?  Do you know the difference between a tweet and an update?  Do you know how to keep your kids safe online?  Do you know what the dangers of the online world even are?  In hopes of opening communication between teens and their parents about their lives “online”  St Gabriel’s is hosting 5 teens and tech seminars over the summer.   Come to St Gabriel’s for a FREE seminar on Tuesday July 21, Thursday July 23, Monday August 10, Wednesday August 12, or Friday August 14 to discuss the dangers of “online life”  and how to keep safe in the cyber world.  Topics to be discussed are :  Social Networking, Cyberbullying and Cyber Predators.  Come and learn more about how teens can protect themselves on line through programs like the Teen Angel network.  For more information about the seminars contact Kim Rowles, youth ministry coordinator at youth@stgabriels.us or if you would like to learn about the Teen Angel network visit http://www.teenangels.org/.

Gulbransen Model E Electronic Organ, absolutely free

Absolutely free: A two keyboard Gulbransen Model E Electronic organ, 1960s vintage. All solid state except for the speaker amplifier. Has full bass pedals, not attached when photo was taken. Full repair and tuning manual included. In fair working order. Needs to be played to loosen up the keys and scrub the contacts. An electronics tinker's dream. If you love to putz with things, this is your wish come true. Free. First come, first served. One catch: You must have at least two large and strong friends to help move it out of my house. It has to go down a full flight of outside steps. My husband will help. [Deacon Sally Bosler, 610-689-9439; cell 610-858-2650]