Lenten Collection for Youth Mission Project

Lenten Collection for Youth Mission Project ...  [From Kim Rowles] Starting on Ash Wednesday the Youth of the Diocese are asking the parishes to begin a collection of personal care items for our Christophany Mission Project. Two years ago we made meals for the "Stop Hunger Now" campaign, last year we learned about Environmentalism and the Episcopal Church, this year we are hoping to help those in need take care of basic hygiene issues. We are asking for collections of the following items: New Handtowels, Washcloths, Nail Clippers (without files or emery boards), Widetooth Combs, Toothbrushes (individually wrapped), Large tubes of toothpaste, bath-sized bars of soap, boxes of sterile bandages, and gallon-sized zip bags. If you cannot purchase these items we will also accept gift cards to Walmart so that we can purchase the items ourselves. We hope to complete 600 kits to distribute to shelters in Bethlehem, Reading and Scranton. We will with your help. The collection will end on April 4, 2010 (Easter Sunday), and the youth council will make arrangements to pick up items, or you can drop them at Diocesan House to be brought to Christophany for assembly. Questions: Kim Rowles, Youth Missioner for the Diocese, online or at 610-751-3931.Download a flyer below.

Download Lenten Project 2010.pdf

Province III Youth Delight Event

The Province III Youth Delight Event will be held the weekend of April 9-11  at the Bishop Clagget Center in Buckeystown MD. This event is open for youth in grades 9 - 12 who have participated in at least one diocesan youth event.  The cost of the weekend is $100.00 and it will be a weekend of celebrating the light of Christ in Creation and in one another.  Our own Kayla Farley (St Brigid's Nazareth) and Anna Siftar (Trinity Bethlehem) were integral in planning this event.  Registration will open on February 5 and close on April 2. There are only ten seats open for youth, so register early at www.diobeth.org. Scholarships will be available. Questions: Kim Rowles, Youth Missioner for the Diocese, online or at 610-751-3931. Download a flyer below.

Download Color Flyer for Delight 2010.pdf

New Orleans, six months later

By Kim Rowles

Please come back, we hope to see you soon.

It feels like yesterday when we were sitting in the New Orleans airport and I was questioning the youth about what they liked the best about our mission trip,; but it wasn't, it was six months ago. What does it mean to come back soon? In a place like New Orleans where there has been so much trauma, loss and hopelessness, soon isn't the same kind of relative word that we throw around when we sign our Christmas cards. "Merry Christmas, See you Soon!" They continue to need our help, not six months later, but yesterday.

I have been reminded of New Orleans often of late.  The New Orleans Saints had been undefeated until recently and the image of the Super Dome had been splattered across the sports stations and the news. I know that this is their professional sports stadium, but it is also the location where thousands of those who couldn't leave New Orleans weathered Hurricane Katrina. I cannot erase that image from my mind. I presented to Trinity Church in Easton on All Saint's day at their services and their Adult Forum about the Youth Mission Trip, what we did, why we did it, and what is going to happen now, and how the teenagers I know, especially the missioners are saints.

It takes a certain kind of faith, a hopefulness, a faithfulness to be a survivor.  I recently heard an interview on NPR, "Voices in the Family" with Dr Dan Gotleib where he was talking about the resilience of individuals, and how some people "bounce forward"  after a tragic or traumatic experience, while others get caught in the mire of the aftermath. What is happening in New Orleans and has been for the past 4 years? Some people are mired in the destruction and the devestation, and others are trying to encourage progress. Those who have lost hope and are now in despair. Those who are without an education, employment, or adequate housing find themselves giving into the devils of drugs, alcohol and violence.  Those who have found and kept hope alive are working towards a better New Orleans, usually with the support of a strong faith community –– be it the Episcopal, Lutheran, Methodist or Roman Catholic churches.  The faithful have come into New Orleans and are helping to resurrect New Orleans. Thanks be to God for this!

I got an email before Christmas from Mary Bess –– she was our crew chief from the Episcopal Community Service (a branch of Episcopal Relief and Development). She sent pictures of the house we worked on.  They have finished the floors and the painting and after Christmas they plan on doing the window sills, the baseboards and the finishing touches. How far they have come since we left in August! It's amazing to look at the pictures. But how she signed the email, that she hopes to see us soon, reminded me that, while this house is almost done, there were four more on the block which hadn't been touched.

That in Gentilly there are so many stories like that of the family we worked for, and that with each year the number of people who go in faith to make a difference and rebuild New Orleans becomes fewer and fewer. She signed the email "hope to see you soon." It won't be soon enough. There is still so much to do.

[Kim Rowles is youth ministry coordinator for the Diocese of Bethlehem.]

Bishop's Bakery and Open Mic Night

[From Kim Rowles, Youth Ministry Coordinator] The 2010 Bishop's Day with Youth. Friday January 29 to Saturday January 30 at Good Shepherd Scranton. All-Night. Open Mic Night. Local Christian Worship/Praise Band. Midnight Eucharist. No Lights Out. Doors Open at 6:30 pm. Open Mic from 7- 9 sign up for 10-minute slots; play your own music, cover songs (church appropriate no profane language or sexually explicit lyrics), read your own poetry, perform a dance routine, or a skit from your favorite comedy show. Band is on from 9:30 - 10:30. Eucharist from 11- 12. Games and Activities in the main hall for the remainder of the night, through the morning. Baked goods, coffee and snacks will be provided as well as breakfast on Saturday morning. Pick up at 9 am on Saturday. More information will be available online at www.diobeth.org/ministries/youth/ministries.

Diocesan Youth Scholarships

[From Kimberly Rowles, diocesan youth missioner] In the current economic situation, the youth of the diocese are depending more on scholarship funds to attend events than in the past. Our scholarship funds has been depleted.

In an effort to raise funds to ensure that no one is turned away from youth events, the Youth Council has decided to try some fundraising, just in time for the Christmas shopping season. With the blessing of Archdeacon Stringfellow and Bishop Paul we are starting our first Pampered Chef Fundraiser this week.  The sale will run until Thanksgiving Day and all items purchased will be delivered in plenty of time for Christmas.

Download 2009.Scholarship Insert Fundraiser

Individuals can buy directly from any youth council member –– there are members at Christ Church Stroudsburg, Trinity Mt Pocono, St Gabriel's Douglassville, St Brigid's Nazareth and Cathedral Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem.
Or you buy directly from the Pampered Chef Website. There's a link to shop online in the lower left hand corner. When you enter to shop be sure to choose the Diocese of Bethlehem as your organization/host. Pampered Chef is going to give our Scholarship Fund 10-15% of the fundsraised depending on the total of our sale. This is a great opportunity to support youth ministry, even if there are no youth in your individual congregation.
If you prefer to make a donation without purchasing anything, we are accepting direct tax-deductible donations towards the scholarship fund in any amount from members and friends of the Diocese of Bethlehem. If you would like to donate to the scholarship fund directly, please submit your check made out to the Diocese of Bethlehem with "Youth Scholarship" on the memo line to Diocese of Bethlehem Attn Rosie Hummel, 333 Wyandote Ave Bethlehem PA 18051 ... or Donate Online (right column of the DioBeth website).

Senior high missioners rebuild in New Orleans

Senior high missioners rebuild in New Orleans
By Kimberly Rowles

Top Row - Matt Potter (St. Brigid’s Nazareth), Ellen Strange (St. Gabriel’s Douglassville), Corey Mars (Christ Church, Stroudsburg), Will Gamber (Nativity Bethlehem), Bobby Dronenbarger(St. Brigid’s Nazareth), Kim Rowles (Youth Missioner), Isaac Martin (Nativity Bethlehem)
2nd Row from Top- Kayla Farley (St. Brigid’s Nazareth), Hayley Tintle (St. Brigid’s Nazareth), Mike O’Gorman (Friend of Diocese) and     Rebekah Beers (St. Mark’s Moscow)
3rd Row From Top - Kyndra Miller(St. Gabriel’s Douglassville), Kate Gorman (Holy Family), and Amanda Arms (St. Gabriel’s Douglassville)
4th Row from Top - Zowie Saxman (St. Anne’s Trexlertown), Emily Schwab (St. Brigid’s Nazareth), Katie Kolepp (Nativity Bethlehem), Sebastian Riefkhol (St. Brigid’s Nazareth) and Annika McGuirk ( Epiphany Clarks Summit)
Bottom Row- Canon Calvin Adams (St. Gabriel’s Douglassville), Taylor Abbonizio (St. Gabriel’s Douglassville), Marirose Sartoretto (Nativity Bethlehem), Jensen Appleman (Trinity Bethlehem) and James Schwab (St. Brigid’s Nazareth)
Not pictured: Brian Gordon (Nativity Bethlehem)

“This trip was a truly amazing experience for me,” a youth participant said. “I can’t believe how ill informed I was about the state of New Orleans; it truly caught me off guard. I enjoyed every day and didn’t even mind waking up early! The multitude of good times definitely outweighed the minimal bad ones.”

Our encore performance as missioners in the Diocese of Louisiana ran from July 25 through August 1. In roughly 80-90% humidity and heat, 25 missioners from the Diocese of Bethlehem sheet-rocked, machete-d and painted their way around the Gentilly area of New Orleans. Twenty youth from ten congregations from all over the Diocese put their sweat and tears into the Louisiana homes, churches and community meeting spaces where we did the work of Christ.

Continue reading "Senior high missioners rebuild in New Orleans" »

Missioner for Youth Kimberly Rowles

Kim Rowles.lo-res
Effective July 2009, Bishop Paul named Kimberly Rowles to Diocesan Staff as Missioner for Youth.

Kim has been a chaperone and leader on several diocesan youth events during the past two years, including the 2007 inaugural Senior High Mission trip to New Orleans in. She has served also as a Rite 13 teacher at Christ Church, Reading where she had been parish administrator. She then served as part-time Youth Ministry Coordinator at St. Gabriel’s Douglassville where she became even more involved in diocesan events and planning as a member of the Youth Council.

Continue reading "Missioner for Youth Kimberly Rowles" »

Ann Mickus, Lay Missioner for Children and Youth Formation at the Cathedral

Ann Mickus, who has been lay missioner for children and youth formation at the Cathedral since March 1, holds a Masters degree in Education from Widener University, and has been teaching high school math for the past eight years. She is a graduate of the Education for Ministry program of the School of Theology of the University of the South.

Ann has been actively involved in children and youth ministry serving as a Rite 13 mentor and teaching Sunday school. She is participating in Godly Play ministry at Trinity Church, Bethlehem. Ann and her husband Bob are members of Trinity Bethlehem. Ann’s ministry will focus primarily on the support and development of Cathedral's many ministries involving children and youth.

She will be present on Sunday mornings beginning March 1, and her time will increase to 20 hours a week at the conclusion of the school year and then into the next program year. A funding gift made this position possible.

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/.

Happening Staff Needed

This year, Happening will take place at none other than Kirby Episcopal House in Mountaintop, PA from November 13-15. The staff application deadline is July 18 and is open to those who have attended a Happening previously. The theme for Happening #19 is “Under the Sea.” We will be exploring many the water scriptures and listening to awesome Little Mermaid tunes, so get pumped! This, of course, gives us a lot of material in the Bible to look through, so get your brain muscles in shape and begin to brainstorm, because we want to have the best Happening possible! Download the note from the rectors and the staff application below.
Download Happening19StaffApplication
Download StaffLetterHappening19

Christophany Goes Green

The DioBeth Youth Council invites 6-12 graders in the Diocese of Bethlehem (and friends!) to our
spring retreat… Christophany Goes Green!

April 24-26, 2009
Watson Homestead Retreat Center
Painted Post, NY (just past the very northern tip of our diocese)

rock wall climbing * creative worship service * swimming * “green” rafts * hiking * yoga
resurrect your old t-shirt * mini-golf * hay rides ... special guest: Tyler Edgar, Assistant Director of Climate Change and Energy for the National Council of Churches.

Registration deadline is March 31. Download an information page below:
Download 2009 InfoPage.doc
Download 2009 InfoPage.pdf

Register online here where you will also find more Information. Please note, however, that you are NOT considered registered until the two-page medical release and community life standards form has been completed and returned to Diocesan House. Download that form as a .doc or .pdf file here:
Download MedRelease:CommStandards.doc
Download MedRelease:CommStandards.pdf

Download a poster below ...
Word: Download Christophany 2009 Flyer
PDF: Download Christophany 2009 Flyer

Scott Bader-Saye accepts faculty post at Seminary of the Southwest

 "With not a little sadness," Diocese of Bethlehem Archdeacon Howard Stringfellow wrote, "I need to announce that Scott Bader-Saye has accepted the post of Professor of Christian Ethics and Moral Theology at the Seminary of the Southwest in Austin, Texas, and that Demery Bader-Saye, Missioner for Youth in the Diocese, will leave her post this summer.


The Bader-Sayes are members of Peacemeal, an emerging Episcopal community in Scranton.  They have three sons. Demery will have served five years as Missioner for Youth in June. She has reshaped the youth ministries in the Diocese and has successfully guided Christophany, Happening, The Bishop's Day with Youth, EYE, and the Senior High Mission Adventures. Her leadership will be missed and difficult to replace. Scott holds degrees from Davidson, Yale, and Duke.  Presently he is Associate Professor of Theology at the University of Scranton, a Jesuit school.m While it is sad to announce their departure, I am heartened by the certainty that their ministries will flourish and that many exciting opportunities await them."

Continue reading "Scott Bader-Saye accepts faculty post at Seminary of the Southwest" »

Nightwatch at St. John the Divine, with a figurine

[From Mother Demery Bader-Saye, Youth Missoner] On the last  Friday of January, 64 youth and 15 adults from the Diocese of Bethlehem boarded tour buses for the short journey to the Cathedral of St. John the Divine in New York City. The event, originally schedule as Bishop's Day with Youth, was held without Bishop Paul, who was recovering from surgery.  The group, however, found a special way to include Bishop Paul in the weekend; they traveled with a miniature Bishop Paul figure (photo to come), documenting each part of the trip with photographs. After the event, they mailed the figurine, a Nightwatch T-Shirt & pin, and a photo montage of the weekend to the real Bishop Paul, along with a signed, matted photo of the "bishop" admiring the Great Organ console at St. John the Divine. 

This is the second year that the youth of our diocese participated in the Nightwatch program at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine. The historic New York cathedral hosts youth groups from around the nation almost every weekend of the year.  The overnight program includes recreation and fellowship time in the gymnasium, sing-alongs with exceptional NY city musicians, a meditative walk through a sizable canvass labyrinth spread on the stone floor of the sanctuary, a demonstration of the newly restored Great Organ, a midnight candlelight Eucharist, and a complete tour of the sanctuary (including a history of the gorgeous stained glass windows and lovely side chapels). Members of the group who attended Bishop's Day in 2008 appreciated seeing the sanctuary in its entirety, since the north transept, having been damaged in a devastating fire in 2001, was closed to the public last year. 

After Nightwatch the group, ready for a more frivolous kind of fun, lunched at Dave & Buster's in TImes Square, enjoying an Italian Feast and some arcade time.

Participating parishes:  St. Gabriel's (Douglassville), Church of the Redeemer (Sayre), Trinity Church (Easton), Cathedral Church of the Nativity (Bethlehem), St. John's (Palmerton), St. Brigid's (Nazareth), St. Mark's (Moscow), Trinity Church (Bethlehem), St. Anne's (Trexlertown), Christ Church (Stroudsburg), Church of the Epiphany (Glenburn), and Holy Apostles (St. Clair).  Many thanks to our adult chaperones and to the parishes and individuals who donated food for snacks and breakfast.

Christophany 2009 Goes Green

The DioBeth Youth Council invites 6-12 graders in the Diocese of Bethlehem (and friends!) to our
spring retreat… Christophany Goes Green!

April 24-26, 2009
Watson Homestead Retreat Center
Painted Post, NY (just past the very northern tip of our diocese)

rock wall climbing * creative worship service * swimming * “green” rafts * hiking * yoga
resurrect your old t-shirt * mini-golf * hay rides

special guest: Tyler Edgar, Assistant Director of Climate Change and Energy for the National Council of Churches

Register online here where you will also find more Information. Please note, however, that you are NOT considered registered until the two-page medical release and community life standards form has been completed and returned to Diocesan House. Download that form as a .doc or .pdf file here:
Download MedRelease:CommStandards.doc
Download MedRelease:CommStandards.pdf

Download a poster below ...
Word: Download Christophany 2009 Flyer
PDF: Download Christophany 2009 Flyer

Happening #18

Happening20084a Forty-seven youth and adults filled up Kirby Episcopal House, November 14-16, 2008, for Happening #18. The weekend was led with thoughtfulness and grace by this year's youth rector, Allison Duckloe of Christ Church, Stroudsburg (pictured in the front of the group). Many thanks to Allison for her hard work and gentle leadership. Thanks also to this year's adult staff members:  Canon Calvin Adams (St. Gabriel's, Douglassville), Joyce Anderson (Church of the Redeemer, Sayre), Scott Bader-Saye (Peacemeal Community, Scranton), Trica Bonenberger (St. Gabriel's, Douglassville), Brian Gordon (Cathedral Church of the Nativity, Bethlehem), Bobbie Hraba (St. John's, Hamlin), and Wes Wubbenhorst (Missioner for Youth in the Diocese of Maryland). Finally, a Happening first in the Diocese of Bethlehem, an enthusiastic welcome to next year's co-youth rectors, Katie Kolepp and Sam Martin (both of the Cathedral Church of the Nativity, Bethlehem). This dynamic duo was so good we could not decide between them, so Happening #19 will be blessed with double the energy, creativity and great ideas.  [The Rev. Demery Bader-Saye (Missioner for Youth in the Diocese of Bethlehem & Happening Spiritual Director]

Download four photos below, as a word or pdf file. Hi-res versions are available upon request. Email Bill Lewellis.

Download happening_18.doc

Download happening_18.pdf

Bishop's Day with Youth in NYC –– Jan. 30-31

Updated January 8, 2009
Some 85 persons have registered for Bishop's Day with Youth. Registrations are closed.

November 5, 2008
For 6-12 graders. Nightwatch, a program of the Cathedral of St. John the Divine, NYC. Singing, games, exploration of the cathedral, time with Bishop Paul, a chance to be with other diocesan youth, a candlelight meditation and midnight Eucharist. Lunch on Saturday at Dave & Buster's Arcade in NYC. Reduced cost of $20 per person is Bishop Paul's gift to youth. The cost includes the Nightwatch program, lodging, charter bus and Saturday lunch. Download more info below.

Download bishops_day_with_youth_2009.doc

Download bishops_day_with_youth_2009.pdf

What's HAPPENING on the Big Screen?

Happening is a once-in-a-lifetime Christian Experience for youth, grades 9-12, Happening #18 will take place November 14-16 at Kirby House in Mountaintop (near Wilkes-Barre). This year's theme is What's Happening on the Big Screen: glimpses of faith in film, television and music.

Download more information below on Happening, who may attend, how to register and the cost.

Download happening_18_info.doc

Download happening_18_info.pdf