ANGLICAN CHURCH IN AMERICA
Diocese of the Northeast
Rt. Rev. Brian Marsh, Bishop

BISHOP'S MONTHLY NEWSLETTER
September 2011

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

 

I hope you have all had a good summer and have had an opportunity to vacation and enjoy our Northeastern weather (hurricanes an exception, of course). Following the recent weather "unpleasantness," I checked with several clergy and lay members of our diocese. Fortunately, no one seems to have been injured. Several did report damage to local infrastructure. Should you know of anyone who has suffered injury, please report them to the diocese. We will certainly offer prayers and provide whatever support we can.

 

It is time to begin planning for Michaelmas season, which coincides with the start of the school year and the beginning of Fall church schedules.

 

September will be a particularly busy month. Two synods will be held in September and our delegates are planning for those events.

 

NATIONAL SYNOD

 

Our General or National Synod will be held at Our Lady of the Snows retreat center in Belleville, Illinois (St. Louis area) on September 22 and 23. Earlier that week, the House of Bishops will meet on Tuesday, September 20. The Executive Council will convene on Wednesday, September 21 and the full synod will meet in session on Thursday and Friday, September 22 and 23.

 

Synod this year will deal with several important issues, such as canonical changes and an inter-communion agreement with the Anglican Province of America. As some of you know, the APA was at one time part of the ACA and was never formally out of communion with it. While our inter-communion agreement is largely symbolic, since have never been officially out of communion, the importance of joining together to do God's work in a very purposeful way cannot be underestimated.

 

Many of our canons are being rewritten to reflect the current status of the ACA. Our current canons were largely taken from the old Episcopal Church canons, circa 1960. For obvious reasons, they do not relate specifically to the polity of the ACA and should be changed. Jeanne Moody, a professional editor and indexer, has undertaken the task of developing an edition of the canons that compares the old and new versions of the text and also indexes the whole. Many thanks to Jeanne for undertaking this challenging and highly technical task.

 

Much other business will be transacted during our several days in Belleville, including the redrawing of diocesan boundaries, the possible election of a Suffragan Bishop for the Diocese of the Eastern United States plans for evangelism and growth. We will also discuss the future organization and direction of the Traditional Anglican Communion.

 

Please keep all who travel to General Synod in your prayers.

 

DIOCESAN SYNOD

 

Our Diocesan Synod will take place a week later on September 29-October 1. The host parish for this year is the Pro Cathedral of the diocese, Trinity Church in Rochester, New Hampshire. Please make your reservations if you have not already done so. Diocesan synod will include a full report of the business transacted at General Synod, reports of various activities throughout the diocese and the music of Bishop George Langberg, who returns by popular demand. In addition, Logos House diplomas will be awarded and recipients of this year's Walter Kilian Awards will be honored.

 

For the past two years, we have collected reports from all who are required to deliver them to synod (bishop, chancellor, etc.). These have been collected and collated by Allan Wylie (allan.wylie@gmail.com). The report has been printed at the Pro Cathedral and made available to all delegates. This publication facilitates the voting process and streamlines the report section of the business meeting. Please send your reports to Mr. Wylie by September 15.

 

On Saturday, October 1, we will, by the grace of God, celebrate the ordination to the priesthood of The Rev. Mr. Arthur L. Bennett.

 

Our diocesan synods are always joyous events. I look forward to joining once again with our diocesan family to do the work of God.

 

PARISH NEWS

 

St. Augustine's Anglican Church of Elizabeth, New Jersey has asked the Diocese of the Northeast to become a member parish. They will make their formal request at our upcoming synod.

 

On Friday, August 19, Father Bob Ley and I visited the parish. We found an extraordinarily spirited and friendly group of Christians, dedicated to fulfilling the Great Commission and celebrating God's love. We look forward to welcoming this parish into our diocesan family.

 

LOGOS HOUSE

 

Logos House continues to expand its educational reach. Recently, the Anglican Province of America has designated Logos House as the program of studies it will use to train its future clergy. The Anglican Catholic Church has also begun to send students to Logos House. Much credit must be given to Canon Granville Henthorne and his dedicated staff for developing this fine program, a program that seems certain to provide much of the educational programming for Continuing Anglican clergy.

 

The first two deacon students from the trial regional classroom program hope to be ready for examination by the Board of Examining Chaplains this fall.

 

CLERGY NEWS

 

We have been blessed in this diocese with exceptional, dedicated clergymen. I am very pleased to report that we have received several clergy into the diocese, two of whom are old friends.

 

Father David Leo has returned to the Diocese of the Northeast. Father Leo had requested Letters Dimissory from his previous jurisdiction. This was granted. Upon receiving letters from Bishop Paul Hewitt, Father Leo was returned to active status as a member of the clergy in good standing here in the DNE. He has not yet received a parish assignment. This will depend to some degree on where he relocates.

 

The Rev. Mr. Robert Philp will also return to the diocese. He and his family have chosen to return to the Hanover, New Hampshire area after a year's stay in Pittsburg. Deacon Philp will be assigned to serve Trinity Church in Lebanon, New Hampshire.

 

The Rev. Amos Mukiza Mihanda, a native of Rwanda, has been licensed to serve as a priest in the Diocese of the Northeast. Father Mihanda is currently assisting at St. Paul's in Portland, Maine. We welcome Father Mihanda and his wife to our diocesan family.

 

Pastor William Alvarez is currently preparing for ordination to the diaconate. He serves as pastor of St. Augustine's Anglican Church in Elizabeth, New Jersey. Father Bob Ley has been assigned as his mentor.

 

Frequently, I receive inquiries from clergy of other jurisdictions who seek admission to the Diocese of the Northeast. The process is fairly straightforward. Any clergyman who wishes to seek admission to the Anglican Church in America must meet with the bishop and the Board of Examining Chaplains. He must belong to - or join - a parish in our diocese. His acceptability will be assessed over time and, if appropriate, he will be licensed. In other cases, the clergyman may require conditional - or absolute - ordination. In still other cases, we may determine that the clergyman might better serve in another jurisdiction. Whatever the determination, each man is received a man of God who has unique gifts. It is our task to assist in the discernment of those gifts and to advise the appropriate direction.

 

POSTULANT NEWS

 

Many thanks to Archdeacon Koller for sending our Embertide notices. Ember letters are to be mailed to the bishop (by either surface mail or e-mail) during Ember Days in September, December, March and June. Ember letters are due from Postulants, Candidates and transitional Deacons. They should contain reflections about the man's journey, educational accomplishments and prayer and family life.

 

Mr. David Koller, the son of Archdeacon and Barbara Koller, has been admitted as a postulant. Mr. Koller holds bachelors and masters degree and is currently working on a degree in theology from the University of London. He is also taking courses at Logos House. We welcome him into the process and will keep him in our prayers as he begins to discern God's call for him.

 

NORTHEAST ANGLICAN

 

The new edition of the Northeast Anglican has just been completed. It will be ready for distribution at synod. Ed Pacht, our editor, has produced yet another superb edition. Many thanks.

 

WORLD CONSULTATION ON CONTINUING ANGLICAN CHURCHES

 

This event, scheduled for Brockton, Massachusetts on November 2-4, should be a wonderful gathering of continuing Anglicans. Several jurisdictions will be represented. While there will be no attempt to "merge" jurisdictions, there will be a series of proposals designed to foster cooperation between churches that share a common heritage. Make your reservations early, as space will be limited.

 

YORKIE'S CLOSET

 

Our Diocesan ministry in support of missions and smaller parishes continues to supply the needs of several different parish families including our military. Two dozen Books of Common Prayer along with devotionals and service books were sent to our military in Afghanistan. We are grateful to the parishes that support this ministry with donations of funds and material. If your parish or mission needs assistance, please contact Fr. Monroe (207)799-5141 or at mirage@maine.rr.com. Contact him soon and before Synod so he can bring items along then and save the cost of postage.

 

BISHOP'S SCHEDULE, SEPTEMBER – DECEMBER

 

September 11 - Episcopal visit. St. Paul's, Portland, Maine.
September 20-23 - General Synod, Belleville, Illinois.
September 29- October 1 - Diocesan Synod. Rochester, New Hampshire
October 19-21. Anglican Church in America synod. (invited guest) West Palm Beach, Florida.
October 21-22. St. George's Anglican Church, Columbus, Georgia. Episcopal visit.
October 30. Episcopal visit - St. Lucy, West Winfield, New York.
November 2-6. World Conference of Continuing Anglican Churches/Festival of Faith - St. Paul's Parish, Brockton, Massachusetts.
November 13. Episcopal visit - Holy Trinity, Fairfield, Maine.
November 27 - Episcopal visit. St. Margaret of Scotland, Conway, New Hampshire.
December 11. Episcopal visit - St. Elizabeth, Tuxedo, New York.

 

As this monthly newsletter suggests, the diocese is a very busy place. We believe that we are a very rich place, spiritually. May we always continue to do God's work in a spirit of love and joy.

Know of my prayers for you all.

 

Your Brother in Christ,

+Brian