The Executive Council of The Episcopal Church issued the following letter at the conclusion of its three-day meeting at the Conference Center at the Maritime Institute in Linthicum Heights, MD (Diocese of Maryland).
A Message to The Episcopal Church
from the Executive Council of The Episcopal Church,
meeting in Linthicum Heights, Maryland, June 14-17, 2011
these widowed boats,
the men who loved them
gone to their graves.
By M. Kei (an award-winning poet who lives on Chesapeake Bay)
Models, paintings and photographs of “widowed boats” line the halls of the Maritime Institute, some showing vessels caught in mid-explosion, others detailed in all their newly launched beauty and power. Scripture often uses the sea as a symbol of danger and chaos, and the boat or ship as a symbol of the safe place God creates for God’s people–a symbol for the church.
For the last three days the Executive Council has met among these powerful symbols to talk of hard financial issues and church decline and growth, to address elephants in the room, and to speak truth to one another in love.
The Presiding Bishop began her opening address by saying she was seeing a “significant rise in readiness for mission . . . for connection to needs beyond the local congregation.” The President of the House of Deputies spoke of the need for courageous change and called for a structure that “supports mission and ministry at the most appropriate level – congregation, diocese, province or church center.”
These have been reoccurring themes in the addresses of the Executive Council’s chair and vice chair this triennium as they have repeatedly urged the Council to be creative risk takers in addressing the challenges facing The Episcopal Church.
Read the entire Message: NewsLine.
Forum participants: do you know any of the elements of our St. Margaret’s Mission Statement? Would the Presiding Bishop see a “significant rise in readiness for mission…[and] connection to needs beyond [St. Margaret’s]” in you? in our congregation? These are questions for personal consideration as well as communal (Forum) consideration.
Begin the conversation now, leave a comment here.