Inside The Harvest From the Bishop
As daylight dwindles in the winter months, Bishop Wolfe writes about other kinds of darkness that are part of our world, and he offers his prayers for the future. Page 2
Life in Nepal
St. Margaret’s member Karin Feltman gives an update on her life of service in Nepal, including word of a scholarship she has started to help girls avoid human trafficking through education. Page 4
Jolly old St. Nicholas
Several churches across the diocese had a visit from the revered fourth century bishop and saint around the time of his feast day on Dec. 6. Take a look at some photos. Page 5
ESS receives $1,500 Jubilee grant By Melodie Woerman Editor, The Harvest Episcopal Social Services in Wichita recently learned it will receive a $1,500 grant, one of only 14 awarded across the Episcopal Church this year for ministry by an existing Jubilee Center (agencies, organizations or churches that serve the poor and oppressed in their communities). There were 67 grant applications submitted. ESS will use the money to help provide a stipend for a chaplain intern who already is serving the agency’s clients and expanding its Chris Stover-Brown, the chaplain connections in the community. The position is held during this academic year intern at ESS, will have part of by Chris Stover-Brown, a native of Wichita who his stipend paid by the Jubilee is a student at Bethany Theological Seminary, grant. the official seminary of the Church of the Brethren, located in Richmond, Ind.
Remembering Bishop Vail
Bishop Wolfe, the ninth Bishop of Kansas, laid flowers on the grave of the first Bishop of Kansas, Thomas Vail, to mark the 150th anniversary of Bishop Vail’s consecration on Dec. 15, 1864. Page 6
Bob Long (left)
and Jim Beck load up boxes of food for local
(Please see Theologian, page 6)
The men are members of St. Paul’s, Clay Center, which helps provide BackSnacks of food to two local schools. Photo by Dave Seifert
Around the diocese
Read about things that are happening in churches across the diocese, including a special Christmas play at St. Martin’s, Edwardsville, and a “Little Free Library” at St. Andrew’s, Derby. Page 8
Marty Pyle, a sculptor from St. Michael and All Angels, Mission, was asked to create a statue immortalizing one of the most famous plays in baseball’s All-Star game history. Page 9
England’s woman bishop
The Rev. Libby Lane has been appointed as the Bishop of Stockport, the first woman in the Church of England to be named a bishop. The announcement comes just a month after women bishops were given final approval. Page 10
Presiding Bishop’s message Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori offers a message about Advent darkness and Christmas light. Page 12
Keeping kids fed
Churches help supply weekend food to hungry children in their community
By Melodie Woerman Editor, The Harvest Statistics point to a growing number of hungry children in Kansas — half of all school children now qualify for free- or reduced-cost meals, an indicator of low or poverty-level family income. But statistics alone don’t tell you much about hungry children. For that, you need to talk to public school teachers and staff. Susan Mills, a social worker at Williams Science and Fine Arts Magnet School in Topeka, said she finds it all too easy to spot a chronically hungry child. “They have ashen skin; dry, chapped lips; an inability to focus; and sometimes you find them rummaging through trash
The Episcopal Diocese of Kansas
(Please see Food, page 3)
on the weekends.
St. Timothy’s, Iola, celebrated the completion of their construction project to expand their kitchen and Fellowship Hall to allow them to serve more meals in outreach. Page 7
Compier named canon theologian
cans for food,” she said. Schools large and small report that hungry students have problems paying attention, are sick more often and have more behavior issues than other students, and their test scores lag behind their school’s average. Many have problems on Mondays and Tuesdays simply because of a lack of food over the weekend. Once they have a few days of school meals in them, their behavior is much better through the end of the week, Mills said. But then the cycle starts all over again. Kristin Wright, a counselor at Lincoln Elementary School in Clay Center, said she sees something in hungry children
would be hungry
Expansion for service
(Please see ESS, page 4)
Bishop Dean Wolfe has announced that the Rev. Don Compier, dean of the Bishop Kemper School for Ministry, has been named Canon Theologian for the Episcopal Diocese of Kansas. The Rev. In this capacity he Don Compier will advise the bishop on a variety of theological matters and join him in making decisions about the Tocher Lecture series. In making the announcement Bishop Wolfe said, “It is a great joy for me to announce that the Rev. Dr. Don Compier has accepted my appointment as Canon Theologian to the Bishop of Kansas. The Rev. Dr. Andrew Grosso served with distinction as the previous Canon Theologian, and now that Father Grosso has joined the Nashotah House Seminary staff, we are fortunate to be able to make good use of Dr. Compier’s distinctive skill set. “Having served as a member of the faculty of one Episcopal Church residential seminary and taught at three other seminaries, Don has enjoyed a unique and rich ministry, and I look forward to being able to ordain him to the Sacred Order of Priests in January so that he may continue to expand his work for Christ and the church.” Compier said of his appointment, “It is a tremendous honor for me to serve the diocese in this position. I am very grateful to Bishop Wolfe for entrusting me with this task. Bishop Wolfe and the people of the Diocese of Kansas recognize the importance of theology in the life of the church. “Theology is careful teaching of and reflection on the Christian story. It supports the faithful and relevant witness of God’s people in today’s world. The episcopacy is the primary teaching office of the church. Canons theologian serve as advisors to bishops in the exercise of this vital role.”
For the past three years Deacon Jeff Roper, St. James’, Wichita, has been engaged in a ministry to prisoners at Winfield Correctional Facility and inmates at the Sedgwick County jail. Page 7
Stover-Brown approached ESS’s executive director, Dr. Barb Andres, in the summer of 2014 to see if he could do his seminaryrequired clergy internship year with the agency. He was interesting in exploring mental health and homeless ministries, and ESS addresses those through many of its programs. Andres was immediately supportive of the idea. “I’ve always been concerned about the spiritual life of ESS, so having a chaplain intern was perfect,” she said. Stover-Brown said ESS’s needs and his gifts seemed like a great match. “The people of Breakthrough Club [the agency’s intentional program for people with mental illness] and ESS had a most-warming welcome to the idea of taking on a student minister and
2 • The Harvest • November/December 2014
From the Bishop
The Right Reverend Dean E. Wolfe
Publisher: The Right Reverend Dean E. Wolfe, Bishop Editor: Melodie Woerman A member of Episcopal News Service and Episcopal Communicators, The Harvest is published six times a year by the Office of Communications of the Episcopal Diocese of Kansas: February, April, June, August, October and December. Stories, letters and photos are welcome. They will be used on a space-available basis and are subject to editing. Send all material (preferably in electronic format or by email) to: Melodie Woerman, editor The Harvest 835 SW Polk St. Topeka, KS 66612-1688 phone: (800) 473-3563 fax: (785) 235-2449 email@example.com Send address changes to: Receptionist 835 SW Polk St., Topeka, KS 66612-1688 firstname.lastname@example.org Upcoming deadlines: Winter 2015 issue: Jan. 15 Subscription rate: $1.50 annually Third class mailing Permit No. 601, Topeka, Kansas POSTMASTER: Send address changes to Episcopal Diocese of Kansas 835 SW Polk St. Topeka, KS 66612-1688
The Anglican Communion
A global community of 70 million Anglicans in 38 member churches/provinces in more than 160 countries.
Archbishop of Canterbury The Most Reverend and Right Honorable Justin Welby Lambeth Palace, London WE1 7JU, United Kingdom www.anglicancommunion.org Episcopal seat: Canterbury Cathedral, Canterbury, England
The Episcopal Church
A community of 2 million members in 109 dioceses in 16 countries in the Americas and abroad. Presiding Bishop The Most Reverend Katharine Jefferts Schori 815 Second Avenue, New York, NY 10017 (800) 334-7626 www.episcopalchurch.org Episcopal seat: Washington National Cathedral, Washington, D.C.
The Episcopal Diocese of Kansas
A community of about 11,000 members in 45 congregations, two diocesan institutions and one school in eastern Kansas.
Bishop The Right Reverend Dean E. Wolfe 835 SW Polk Street, Topeka, KS 66612-1688 (785) 235-9255 (800) 473-3563 www.episcopal-ks.org Episcopal seat: Grace Episcopal Cathedral, Topeka
Darkness and light Dear Friends, The night comes earlier and the day arrives later this time of year. Here in Kansas, the wind is blowing the last brown leaves from the trees, and the temperature has fallen. The first snow is on its way. This is the time of year when the shortness of the daylight reminds us of the power of the darkness and of our primal need to remain close to the light. Christians are always trying to stay close to the light … especially as we find ourselves witnesses to a frightening darkness. This darkness is revealed throughout our culture in our penchant for violence and our fascination with the power of weapons large and small. We see a frightening darkness in our political processes when elected leaders prove unwilling to come to agreement for the good of the people they serve, and when the interests of the rich and powerful take precedence over the needs of the poor and the faithful. We see a frightening darkness in a ravenous and growing consumerism and in our penchant for seeking comfort in possessions instead of people. It is nothing but the deepest darkness that leaves innocent school children dead in their classrooms in both the United States and in Pakistan. It is the deepest darkness that leads apologists to rationalize state-sponsored torture. The words of the 1928 Book of Common Prayer sum it up pretty well: “We have left undone those things which we ought to have done, and we have done those things which we ought not to have done; and there is no health in us.” I write to you just as Advent is on the verge of reaching its crescendo in the birth of our Lord Jesus Christ. Christmas is that great celebration of the light that breaks through the darkness, and the darkness, as frightening and powerful as it may be, shall not overcome it. The presence of Christ in a broken world restores humanity to its fullest possibility. So even in the midst of deep darkness, we celebrate an emergent and joyful hope for good will among all people. And we are no longer afraid.
A bishop’s Christmas prayer list
Bishops pray for lots of things. They pray for the health of their people and their clergy. They pray for insight when faced with difficult decisions. They pray for themselves and the needs of their family and friends. Sometimes they pray by being quiet in the hope they will better hear the still, small voice of God. Sometimes they pray by raising their voices so they might be heard in the public square. I thought it might be good to share with you a few of the items on my Christmas prayer list this year. I pray the people of this diocese will continue to give generously of their time, tithe and talent, so we might be able to raise the final $2.5 million to complete our dream of building a Leadership Center to serve this diocese for the next 200 years. I pray more and more of our members will attend Sunday worship regularly and come to see the value and privilege of being participants in beautiful and sacred worship. I pray more of our older members will bring grandchildren, nephews, nieces, and neighbors’ and friends’ children to church so they might encounter the joys of the Christian faith. I pray the programs that exist in every one of our parishes to care for those in need will continue to grow and expand. I pray one or two persons in every one of our parishes will realize the future of their parish may be largely up to them and what they are willing to do in the name of Christ.
Photo by Stephen Butler
I pray the most gifted people in our diocese (young and old) will prayerfully consider lay leadership or ordained ministry in the church. I pray the Bishop Kemper School for Ministry will continue to develop and grow in order to better accommodate and equip our lay and ordained leaders to know Christ and to make Christ known. I pray for clergy and lay leaders of the Episcopal Diocese of Kansas who will not give up hope, even in the face of the deepest disappointments. I pray that I, along with all members of our diocese, will grow to be more and more able to express why we have chosen the Episcopal Church as our spiritual home. I pray more and more members of our church will pray the Daily Offices and discover the ineffable joy of conversing regularly with God. I pray our MegaCamp will be filled to capacity with laughing children and youth next summer. Bless the leaders of our youth. I pray our Canterbury Houses will be filled to capacity with interns and peer ministers next year. Bless the leaders of our college students. I pray no member of any committee, vestry or council will resign without first talking to those with whom they are in conflict in a sincere attempt to work out their differences. Quitting is not a Christian virtue. I pray more and more of our preachers will take the risk to interpret the Word of God with honesty and power. I pray God will grant me the ability to do the same. I pray we are doing the things in this diocese that most please our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. I pray for soldiers and diplomats around the world who serve in harm’s way. I pray for doctors and nurses who risk their lives in the care of Ebola victims and others. I pray the lonely will be comforted, the sick will be healed and the imprisoned will find solace. I pray the frightened will find courage, the depressed will find hope and the grieving will find support. I pray all of these prayers in the name of God the Father, who loved us so much he sent his only Son; God the Son, who loved us so much he gave himself for us; and God the Holy Spirit, who is present among us still and guides us always. Amen. May these prayers be joined by yours, and may we all enjoy a blessed Christmas and a joyous New Year. Faithfully, +Dean v
November/December 2014 • The Harvest • 3
Food: Help for chronically hungry kids gets results (Continued from page 1)
she never sees in other students, including her own children. “When we serve a snack at school, there are children who eat half so they can take the other half home to a sibling or parent.” To help combat one piece of the problem of hungry children, the three major food banks that serve the state of Kansas have programs to provide kids with weekend food. And two of those programs include Kansas Episcopal churches. BackSnacks, Harvesters Community Food Network Serving Northeast and North central Kansas, as well as parts of Missouri Nine Episcopal churches currently work with Harvesters to provide packs of food to 1,140 students in 24 elementary schools. The logistics are fairly simple — schools sign up with the food bank and designate students who should receive food, churches agree to partner with one or more schools in their area to get the food to the schools, and Harvesters provides the food. They offer four different “menus,” so students receive a slightly different but equally nutritious pack of non-perishable food each week.
School personnel report that they see firsthand what Harvesters’ data show — students who receive BackSnacks do better in school than at-risk children who don’t get extra food. Mills, of Williams Magnet School in Topeka, said her school saw some results quickly once students got BackSnacks. “Right away we saw improvement in
Churches interested in participating in any of these programs should contact the food bank in their area. Harvesters Community Food Bank (Northeast and North central Kansas): (877) 353-6639; www.harvesters.org Second Harvest Community Food Bank (Far Northeast Kansas): (816) 364.3663; www.ourcommunityfoodbank. org Kansas Food Bank (Wichita area, Western Kansas and Southeast Kansas) (316) 2653663; www.kansasfoodbank. org
Photos by Melodie Woerman
Colette Coolidge (left) and Kathy Slawson of Grace Cathedral, Topeka, place packs of food into tubs for delivery to Williams Science and Fine Arts Magnet School, with which the cathedral partners in the BackSnack program. BackSnacks provide a weekend of nutritious food for children at risk for chronic hunger.
things like better engagement, better attention in class, better behavior.” She said these children also were healthier, missing fewer school days because of colds or the flu. Joy Boan, the school nurse at Fairview Elementary in Olathe, said the food that students at her school receive help them be “healthy and ready to learn.” But for Mills’ BackSnack students in Topeka, having more food still didn’t help their grades or test scores. For that to happen, the school needed to provide an intensive after-school tutoring program. After three years of enhanced academics, BackSnacks students saw a 44 percent growth in math and reading scores, com-
Boxes stacked in the cathedral nave are filled with two weeks’ worth of food, which will help feed hungry children over the Christmas break.
pared to an 8 percent increase for packing the plastic bags of food for delivery and then getting them other students. “BackSnacks didn’t drive up to the schools. St. Paul’s, Clay Center, works test scores on its own,” Mills said. “It made the kids ready to learn.” with two schools and can manage Each of the participating their 80 students with just two regular volunteers. schools said Grace Cathedral, they have stuTopeka, which dents on a waitserves only Wiling list to receive liams Magnet BackSnacks, but School and its Harvesters has 140 participatmaxed out its caing kids, uses two pacity. teams of about Ellen Feldeight each to hausen, the food pack and deliver. bank’s director When the of communicanumber of tions, said it costs schools involved $250 per child goes up, so does for a year’s worth Harvesters provides a of BackSnacks. weekend of nutritious food in t h e l a b o r r e quired. Trinity, They have fund- pre-packaged bags. Lawrence, serves ing for the level they now support, but they won’t 270 students in eight schools — expand the program beyond what the most of any Episcopal church in the diocese — and relies on 22 is sustainable year after year. The last thing they’d want to volunteers. St. Aidan’s, Olathe do, Feldhausen said, is to add serves the largest number of more children one school year students of any church — 285, only to remove them the next if split among five schools. About 30 people keep their program funding wasn’t available. running. Volunteers have to do double Dedication required Churches in the diocese that duty during long school breaks, partner with BackSnacks say par- such as the Christmas and New ticipating isn’t complicated, but it Year’s holidays. Students received does require dedication on each two packs of food each of the two of the 34 weeks food is provided. weeks beforehand, making sure They can’t miss even one week, each of the weekends would be because they know hungry kids covered. But Wright, the counselor at will suffer. Each school asks that food the Clay Center school, said that come to them in a particular way, even with this extra help, her lowand churches are responsible for income students felt anxious as the
A note to readers from the editor
An exciting change is coming to The Harvest in 2015. We will be offering you the same high quality stories and news of the people and churches of Episcopal churches in eastern Kansas and of Anglicans around the world, but in a new format. The Harvest will now come to you as a magazine! It will be delivered to you four times each year — and we’ll be able to introduce color photos.
break approached. “Loss of school lunches means food emergencies for them,” she said. BackPack Buddies, Second Harvest Community Food Bank Serving four counties in the northeast corner of Kansas, as well as the St. Joseph, Mo., area While the food bank usually provides its weekend food to schools directly from its warehouse in St. Joseph, Mo., St. Paul’s and 24 other churches in Leavenworth serve local elementary and Head Start children differently. Together with the community they raise the $100,000 needed to provide food for more than 700 children in pre-kindergarten through third grade who qualify for free- or reduced-cost lunches. St. Paul’s was one of the founders of the program, in which volunteers package bulk food into individual packs and then deliver it to schools. Each month there are more than 100 volunteers involved across the city. St. Paul’s volunteers pack on Sunday mornings, so members of the church are aware of the program and the children’s’ needs. Food 4 Kids, Kansas Food Bank Serving the rest of the state of Kansas The Wichita-based food bank provides weekend food to more than 7,100 children in 400 schools but does so only through its central warehouse; no partner churches are involved. They do report, however, that they welcome volunteers from churches or other organizations who want to come to the warehouse to package bulk food into the packs that go to children in the program. v
My hope is that with this new style, the great stories of faith and commitment you’re used to reading will be presented in a way that is even more engaging and attractive. It is a great honor to be able to share with you the stories of the people of God in this diocese and around the Episcopal Church. I look forward to your feedback. Melodie Woerman, editor v
In the “Around the diocese” column on page 8 of the September/October issue of this newspaper, we said that a new fire pit was created for St. Martin’s, Edwardsville by a local Boy Scout troop. It actually was a Girl Scout Gold Project (the highest award in Girl Scouts) completed by Jessica Christensen, who is a member of the parish. The Harvest regrets the error. v
4 • The Harvest • November/December 2014
Life in Nepal is both rewarding and challenging Editor’s note: Karin Feltman, a member of St. Margaret’s, Lawrence, has spent the past 11 months living and working in Nepal, a small country in Southeast Asia that borders India and China. She has spent most of her time so far learning the language (Nepali) and becoming acculturated to life in Kathmandu, capital of the nation of 27 million people. Feltman, a nurse who participated in many relief and humanitarian trips in the United States and abroad in recent years, is in Nepal long-term to engage in work fighting human trafficking, in which people are forced against their will into commercial sex work or into some form of involuntary servitude, forced labor or even slavery. She offered an update on her life and work in an email to friends and supporters on Dec. 11. Here are some excerpts.
find themselves enslaved with no way out. Two of the young girls I met during a village visit this summer committed suicide three weeks ago. Education is an important first step in changing the futures of these girls. We can send one girl to school for $10.50 a month. If you are interested in more information, or would like to sponsor a girl, please let me know. My email address is email@example.com.
Training, seeing family
By Karin Feltman I recently submitted my application for a research visa and am waiting for the results. If it’s approved, I will be free to move to a village and do research, working alongside a Nepali nonprofit focused on all aspects of human trafficking. This would be a great way to gain acceptance into the area and culture, since they are doing good work and are highly respected. My research will focus on the area of Marming, in Sindhupalchok, Nepal. I will study the people who went to other countries for foreign labor (very common in Nepal), how many of them are missing and likely were trafficked in the process, and common factors that made them vulnerable to being trafficked in the first place. Once the research is done, I can help make recommendations on prevention or awareness pro-
Karin Feltman (front left) joins with people from her neighborhood in Kathmandu, Nepal, where she is studying to prepare to work against human trafficking. Feltman is a member of St. Margaret’s, Lawrence.
grams to decrease the likelihood of being trafficked. I will admit, I love Sindhupalchok, with its clean air, hills, trees and river. The group with whom I would be working is only about a mile from the massive landslide in August that claimed more than 200 homes, 150 lives, and affected thousands. I walked to the area yesterday and cannot even begin to describe the devastation. There is nothing to be done in terms of relief or aid. Everything is just gone, covered in earth. The village of Marming is further north, along the China border, and is only accessible by walking the final part of the journey. A Nepali told me it is a 15-minute walk, which means
closer to two hours for a foreigner. That should be interesting!
Scholarships for girls
Today I got some exciting news. A scholarship program I have been working on with a Nepali friend is finally getting off the ground. We are going to provide scholarships for 24 young girls in high-risk trafficking areas as an important prevention measure. Many village girls who are unable to get an education commit suicide, from lack of hope of a better future, or because they are uneducated and unqualified to do anything other than domestic servant work. They leave their villages in search of work in other countries, and there they
In October, I headed back to the U.S. for training in Community Health Education. It will be useful as I move from Kathmandu to the village to live and work. It is a model that involves the community at every level. They identify their own challenges, raise up workers to address the issues and complete the projects, and have trained “Community Health Educators” from their own village who go into homes and do physical and moral teachings to help increase the health of individuals and families. In turn the entire community becomes physically and spiritually transformed. This often lifts the area out of poverty to the point where things like child mortality from preventable diseases are drastically decreased, and moral issues like human trafficking are eradicated as the community begins to value the vulnerable members, like women and children. My role in this would be one of a trainer, helping to train the educators that visit the individual homes. This is something that can continue long after the “foreigner” is gone. It really is an amazing program with great results worldwide. On the way to the U.S., I took an extended layover in Europe (gotta stop somewhere!) to visit
my niece Morgan and take the train around Europe for a week like a couple of college students. It was great to see her, and it was important for us to be together, as it was the second anniversary of the death of my sister, and Morgan’s mom, Kim.
Life in Kathmandu
I think I am fully acclimated to life here now. I still don’t love not having heat or air conditioning, or some of the conveniences of home (like a car, or 24/7 electricity), but I love the people and I feel like I am beginning to build close relationships, especially now that I am becoming functional in the language. Besides attending language class four days a week and twice weekly classes for my study visa, I am active in a Nepali church, attend Nepal Bible study, teach English at a safe house for abused girls, attend weekly anti-trafficking meetings, assist in outreach programs to at-risk girls and women, and just try to be as involved in the community and society as possible. The weather is getting colder, and it is once again warmer outside than in my apartment. I am now wearing fleece, long johns, gloves, scarf, etc. — inside. The days are beautiful, though, in the low 60s. With the upcoming move and my research project beginning, expenses for 2015 will be quite a bit greater than they were this past year. Based on my new budget, I am not quite fully funded. If you would like to make a tax deductible contribution, or want to join in this work by making a recurring donation for the coming year, please let me know. Thank you for helping to make this possible through your love, prayers and financial support. I literally couldn’t do this without you. v
ESS: Grant will expand outreach into the community (Continued from page 1) seemed genuinely excited about my gifts.” Funding for his first semester stipend was provided by his seminary, and the Jubilee grant will pay for the spring semester. He works about 10 hours a week, focusing on the clients of Breakthrough House as well as the other program areas of ESS, including employment readiness, food support, help for at-risk youth and other forms of aid to those in poverty.
While many area Episcopal churches and clergy have been involved with ESS since its founding as Venture House in 1983, Andres says Stover-Brown’s presence answers a different need. She believes his special pastoral counseling ministry to Breakthrough House clients will greatly enhance the educational and other programs ESS currently provides to them. But Stover-Brown also has started making new connections with churches across
Wichita, learning what ministries they provide and how they and ESS might support one another. The networks he is creating also will help provide new volunteer opportunities that will live on after his service ends in the spring. Andres said the involvement of the Episcopal Church has been and remains vitally important to ESS, “but we want to go beyond that,” she said. The goal is for religious leaders from faith communities across the city to become more deeply involved in the daily activities at ESS. Andres said Stover-Brown’s regular presence at the agency’s office in downtown Wichita supports the work of ESS in another important way. “He exists as a chaplain within our existing programs,” she said. “He is a presence, to bring a sense of God being with us. He offers a spiritual awareness of what we are doing every day.” Stover-Brown said the “constantly changing atmosphere” of ESS, with many people coming in seeking a variety of services, has helped him learn to be flexible
Episcopal Social Services’ chaplain intern Chris Stover-Brown (left) chats with Jodi, an agency client, over lunch. Photos by Jennifer Wise of ESS
and stay focused on what God is showing him. “Ministry opportunities often come in the challenging interruptions,” he said. He said his ministry with Breakthrough House clients has been a special blessing, through its mutual support environment. “We are all empowered to be healthier through positive relationships with each other.” But beyond that, he said ESS offers him even more. “It is exciting to see how
God’s love brings so many different people together at ESS,” he said. “I see ministries born out of the Episcopal tradition seeking justice by partnering persons living in poverty with volunteers and staff. Many, in both parts of the partnership, bring their faith tradition to the partnership. “Hopefully every partner will catch a glimpse of God’s love in their interactions.” v
November/December 2014 • The Harvest • 5
St. Nicholas made appearances at churches across the diocese on Dec. 7, the day after his feast day. The 4th century bishop and saint from Myra, in modern-day Turkey — patron saint of children, sailors, seafarers and pawn shops — often tells parish children about his life of service to others and the origin of gift giving that many trace to him. These photos show that St. Nicholas, like Santa Claus, can be in several places at the same time and often takes different appearances in different places.
Good Shepherd, Wichita
St. Luke’s, Shawnee
Grace Cathedral, Topeka A stained glass window at Grace Cathedral, Topeka, is dedicated to St. Nicholas. It features symbols of two groups for whom he is a patron saint — sailors and seafarers (shown by a ship in the upper right) and pawn shops (depicted by the three gold balls that have been pawn symbols for centuries. The story of St. Nicholas as gift-giver to children was strong in the Netherlands, where the saint was known as Sinterklaas. Dutch immigrants to the United States brought this tradition with them, where the name became Americanized to Santa Claus, shown in the window’s lower left.
St. Michael and All Angels, Mission
. Stones hold down the roofs 6 • The Harvest • November/December 2014
ec. 15, 2014, marked the 150th anniversary of the consecration of the first bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Kansas, Thomas Hubbard Vail, on Dec. 15, 1864, at Trinity Episcopal Church in Muscatine, Iowa, where he had been serving as rector.
Photo by Melodie Woerman
Bishop Dean Wolfe places a bouquet of roses on the grave of Bishop Thomas Vail during a visit to Topeka Cemetery on Dec. 10. Dec. 15 marked the 150th anniversary of Bishop Vail’s consecration in 1864 as the first bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Kansas. Bishop Wolfe is the ninth bishop.
Theologian: Dean is former seminary professor (Continued from page 1) Compier, who has a Ph.D. in theology from Emory University in Atlanta, was named dean of the Bishop Kemper School for Ministry this summer. Most recently he led the graduate program in religion at Graceland University in Independence, Mo., where he developed an innovative online curriculum. He also taught courses in theology, philosophy and modern church history at the Church Divinity School of the Pacific and the Graduate Theological Union in Berkeley, Calif. He also has offered classes at Saint Paul School of Theology in Kansas City, Mo., and Eden Theological Seminary in Webster Groves, Mo. Compier is fluent in Dutch and Spanish and has offered workshops and consulted with theological educators in many nations. He has long been involved in Latino ministry and culture. In September 2011 he addressed the meeting of the House of Bishops in Quito, Ecuador. He also is the author of several books. He has been married to Yolanda Santos of Mexico City for 35 years. v
He was consecrated in Iowa instead of Kansas because of the turmoil from the ongoing Civil War and the distance from established dioceses that could provide bishops for the service. When he arrived in Kansas, he discovered there wasn’t any money to pay him. Trinity, Atchison, was without a priest, so the wardens there offered him that position so he could earn a wage. And there were only 147 communicants known in the entire diocese, which then encompasses the entire state of Kansas. After some initial visitations, he headed East on Feb. 1, 1865, where he spent five months trying to raise $20,000 to establish an endowment for expenses of the episcopacy. It took another trip the next year, this one of eight months, to reach his goal. He noted that Kansas truly was “a diocese only technically and in name ... poor as any jurisdiction around us.” He struggled to raise money for the College of the Sisters of Bethany, an Episcopal girls’ school in Topeka, and to find priests willing to endure prairie hardships. To meet the needs of his churches, he started the Kansas Theological School to educate priests to serve in Kansas churches. Bishop Vail and his wife Ellie in 1884 founded Christ Hospital in Topeka, using their own money to establish the first Protestant hospital in the state. Today it is known as Stormont-Vail. When Bishop Vail was elected in 1864, there were 147 members in 10 congregations, all clustered in eastern Kansas. When he died in 1889, Bishop Vail had grown the diocese to 83 congregations with more than 3,000 communicants, and the reach of the Episcopal Church had spread into far western Kansas. For nearly 25 years he provided faithful and dogged leadership that helped the Diocese of Kansas grow and thrive, and of which we are inheritors today. — Melodie Woerman v
November/December 2014 • The Harvest • 7
Wichita deacon finds a calling in prison ministry By Melodie Woerman Editor, The Harvest Deacon Jeff Roper of St. James’, Wichita, said he began his service to people in prison three years just by responding to a need. That desire to help someone has resulted in a ministry in which Roper now leads a worship service every other month at Winfield Correctional Facility, and he also visits people who have been jailed in the Sedgwick County Detention Facility. It began when Roper, who teaches English at Andover High School, heard a fellow teacher describe his best friend, who was nearing the end of a seven-year sentence for having killed another driver while drunk. The man had been transferred to Winfield Correctional Facility, less than an hour’s drive away, in preparation for his release. Roper offered to accompany his colleague to visit the man and ended up providing some pastoral care as his release date neared. Eventually the chaplain at Winfield asked Roper if he’d be interested in leading a regular chapel service for inmates. But before making a commitment, Roper turned to a veteran of prison ministry for advice.
The Rev. Joe Bayles retired in 1996 after 33 years as a prison chaplain at Hutchinson Correctional Facility and knew Roper from his own attendance now at St. James’. Bayles said he shared with Roper two keys to working in a prison. “First, you have to learn the rules and regulations in dealing with inmates,” he said. “That’s to maintain your own ministry” within the prison walls. Bayles said chaplains also have to differentiate between spiritual and criminal responsibility, something inmates can have trouble doing. “God can forgive you,” he said, “but you still have a responsibility to society for what you did.” Bayles said he could tell Roper would be a good fit for this ministry. “Jeff is very caring and has a
Deacon Jeff Roper, of St. James’, Wichita, has been engaged in a ministry to inmates and prisoners for the past three years. He is pictured outside the Sedgwick County Detention Facility after a visit there earlier this year. In addition to visiting people in the jail, he also conducts monthly worship services at Winfield Correctional Facility. Submitted photo
good grasp on dealing with people who are offenders,” he said. “He’s not someone who will let people take advantage of him.” Armed with Bayles’ helpful advice, Roper was ready to serve, but he first had to undergo a background check and engage in a half-day of training for volunteers.
A congregation of 35
He then started leading regular worship services — a version of Morning Prayer plus a homily. The service draws about 35 inmates out of a prison population of 550. Sometimes he brings with him young adults who are part of the Episcopal Campus Ministry of Wichita, where Roper serves as an advisor. One of them, Tristan Holmberg, also a member of St. James’, said the visit was nothing like what he had expected. “The experience was amazing,” Holmberg said. “I’d definitely do it again.” He said as he and Roper set up the chapel before the service, inmates came in and greeted them warmly. “They seemed to really like having Deacon Jeff there.”
Music for the service is provided by inmates, and Holmberg said their talents rivaled praise bands he had heard in churches. “They had such an outpouring of joy to worship,” he said. Holmberg said he had the chance to go beyond mere formalities as he talked with some of the inmates. One man wanted to know whether Holmberg thought the Harry Potter books were sinful, as some people had suggested, and together they had what Holmberg called “an interesting discussion.” He said that Roper’s interactions with his prison congregation reflected a real joy, with inmates eager to share stories of their lives in the past two months. “They weren’t just glad to be out of their cells,” he said. “They were there for the fellowship and worship.” Roper said he receives from those services far more than he gives, as he experiences the inmates’ “enthusiasm and love of the Lord.”
A challenging ministry
Roper said he knows the idea of working in a prison “stretches people beyond their comfort
zone,” but he has always felt safe and secure when at Winfield. “It’s where the Lord wanted me to be. But it is a special calling.” He said he was surprised to learn how little pastoral support inmates have while incarcerated. Winfield has a prison chaplain who also serves as the volunteer coordinator, but he spends his time arranging for volunteers like Roper to provide the actual worship services. “When I go to a hospital, the hospital provides chaplains,” he said. “They are trying to provide some kind of pastoral care. And local ministers have the ability to go in and see their own parishioners. But it’s not that way in prisons. People lack access to pastoral care.” While glad to serve the 35 who worship with him, out a prison population of 550, he worries, who serves the rest of them? “These could be parishioners, friends or relatives. Who is going to make pastoral visits to them? Don’t we want the Christian faith available to them as they go through a lonely, horrific experience?”
He also learned that incarceration can strike closer to home than one might guess. After one service an inmate wanted to talk, having recognized Roper as a high school soccer coach. It turned out the inmate and Roper’s son once had played on the same team. The man, in his mid-20s, was doing time on drug-related charges. “Everyone has a connection to someone who is in jail,” he said. This summer Roper encountered a new challenge when a parishioner at St. James’ was in the Sedgwick County jail, and he wasn’t allowed to visit. Being a volunteer chaplain at a state facility didn’t satisfy county requirements — he had to undergo another background check and additional training before he could check on the parishioner’s welfare.
A deacon’s call
Roper said his prison ministry is just part of his challenge of being a deacon called to a servant ministry. His motivation comes from Matthew 25:37-38, in which Jesus tells his followers that in serving people in need — including visiting those in prison — they are serving the Lord. Roper said he has been looking at starting a chapter of the Brotherhood of St. Andrew, a special men’s ministry group within the Anglican Communion, at St. James’ to assist with this ministry. A similar group at Grace Church in Hutchinson is involved with Kairos, a program like Cursillo that is designed for people in prison. He also is unaware of any other organized ministries of this kind in the Diocese of Kansas. He knows this calling isn’t for everyone, but he hopes more people will consider it. “We as Christians are called by God to do the right thing,” he said. “When you are doing the right thing with faith and trust that God will take care of you, you will be thrust into places and situations you have never thought of. It’s scary at the beginning but so rewarding.” v
Small church finishes big construction project
Photos by Marsha Burris
A church member unpacks items to go into new kitchen cabinets during a work day at St. Timothy’s, Iola on Dec. 13. The church undertook a major expansion of its kitchen and fellowship hall, which was dedicated by Bishop Dean Wolfe on Dec. 20.
St. Timothy’s, Iola, may be few in numbers (the Southeast Kansas church has a membership of 33 people), but it just completed a big project. The parish celebrated the completion of its new fellowship hall and kitchen expansion project after three months of construction when it was dedicated at a service officiated by Bishop Dean Wolfe on Saturday, Dec. 20. The old kitchen offered about 100 square foot of space, but according to member Donna Sifers, the new kitchen totals about 500 square feet, with another 1,000 square feet in the expanded and A stained glass window of the renovated Fellowship Hall. Sue O’Connor, the parish’s senior warden, Holy Spirit is a new addition to the said of the new space, “May everyone who passes Fellowship Hall at the Iola church. through the doors of this amazing new hall truly feel God’s love.” Noting all the food the church offers to its community she added, “Think of all the meals and love that will go forth from this parish hall!” v
8 • The Harvest • November/December 2014
Around the diocese
St. John’s, Abilene asked members to wear their church shirt, or any other red one, for the All Saints Day chili supper hosted by the parish on Nov. 1.
6. In addition to the sweet treats, the event featured “soup to go,” other baked items, knives, dip mixes, the always-popular James Avery jewelry and more.
Church hosts Little Free Library
Trinity, Atchison gave people the opportunity to count their blessings on Thanksgiving Day with a service of Morning Prayer.
St. Andrew’s, Emporia observed the feast of St. Andrew on Nov. 30 with Evensong followed by a potluck supper. The event had a hint of sadness, as the parish said good-bye to Karen Whittlesey, parish administrator for the past eight years, who resigned to devote more time to family.
next to the parking
St. Mark’s, Blue Rapids adult and youth members helped serve a spaghetti meal to the local chapter of the Fellowship of Christian Athletes at Valley Heights JuniorSenior High School on Nov. 5. St. Paul’s, Clay Center Altar Guild got a jump-start on Christmas cleaning on Nov. 8 when it prepared for the visit the following day by Bishop Wolfe. The spruceup gathering also included time to discuss plans for the coming year. St. Paul’s, Coffeyville now collects items each Sunday for Genesis Inc., a local social service agency. Items gathered change from week to week and include dry food items, diapers and wipes, canned food and paper products. In months with a fifth Sunday, members take up a monetary collection. St. Andrew’s, Derby recently started a joint youth group with Cross of Glory Lutheran Church. The group’s first outreach effort was to sponsor a family for Christmas gifts. St. Martin’s, Edwardsville welcomes donations at any time for Vaughn-Trent Community Services. Items the agency needs include non-perishable food, personal care items and cleaning supplies. Trinity, El Dorado hosted another successful St. Nicholas Cookie Fair at the church on Dec.
The Derby Public Library has set up a “Little Free Library” lot of St. Andrew’s, Derby, decorated with a Dr. Suess theme. It’s a “take a book, return a book” gathering place where neighbors share their favorite
Epiphany, Independence enjoyed its annual caroling party on Dec. 14, with a special invitation to members of Ascension, Neodesha to join them. After spreading Christmas cheer to those they visited, members returned to the parish hall for a soup supper and dessert. St. Margaret’s, Lawrence had four members take part in a citywide training, Direct Action and Research Training, a local social justice initiative. Trinity, Lawrence hosted an Advent Fun Day the morning of Dec. 6 for children age 4 through 5th grade. They made Advent wreaths, decorated Chrismon ornaments for the parish Jesse Tree, made a gift to take to someone they care for and decorated cookies. Parents could enjoy the quiet time or get in some child-free shopping. St. Paul’s, Leavenworth provides a monthly free community meal in its parish hall, to anyone in the city who would like to come to eat. It takes place on the second Saturday of each month. St. Paul’s, Manhattan has a new helping ministry, thanks to the initiative of member Justin Williams. “Helping Hands” will
books with others. In its most basic form, a Little Free Library is a box full of books where anyone may stop by and pick up a book or two and bring back another book to share. Submitted photo
provide some light yard work and snow removal to fellow parishioners in need of a hand with those tasks. St. Paul’s, Marysville welcomed 45 people from six other churches of the Northwest Convocation for a gathering on Oct. 12. The event included Evening Prayer with special music, followed by a meal of pulled pork sandwiches, salads and pies. St. Michael’s, Mission again this year is making prayer shawls for elderly and sick women in Kenya, to be distributed next summer by teams going to the east African nation through the diocesan Kansas to Kenya ministry. St. Matthew’s, Newton offered some cheery greetings to
parish shut-ins and soldiers by sending them special Halloween and Thanksgiving cards. Parish members were invited to add their names to the remembrances. St. Aidan’s, Olathe members who are part of the St. Bridget chapter of the Daughters of the King attended the meeting of St. Theresa’s DOK chapter at St. Michael’s on Dec. 1. Together they watched a DVD about the international work of the order for women dedicated to a life of prayer, service and evangelism. Grace, Ottawa has added a new trumpet to the church’s 1950 Moller organ, which will enhance the parish music program that now includes a choir as well as congregational singing. The trumpet was featured at the Dec. 21 service of Advent Lessons and Carols. St. Thomas’, Overland Park offered a Blue Christmas service on the afternoon of Dec. 21 — the longest night of the year. The service of remembrance and consolation was an opportunity for people to remember loved ones with whom they no longer can share the holidays.
Photo by Terry Christensen
Christmas play involves all parish children
When Laurie Fisher of St. Martin’s, Edwardsville, couldn’t find a Christmas play with enough parts for all 20 children in the church, she wrote one herself. “The Unexpected Christmas Present” incorporated the characters of classic childhood toys (dolls, train, even an Etch-a-Sketch) to help tell a story of God’s love. Fisher said she wrote the play with each child in mind, knowing she needed to create parts and dialogue for youngsters age 4 through 18. After multiple rehearsals, the play was performed at the church on Dec. 14. v
St. John’s, Parsons has expanded the hours of its popular Laundry and Latte ministry to students at Labette Community College, which provides coffee and conversation at the local Laundromat. It now starts Sunday evenings at 5:30 p.m. to accommodate the growing number of students (20-25 each week) and the small number of washing machines. Epiphany, Sedan gathered small group meetings to discuss what the church does best (hospitality), what it can do better (outreach) and how to accomplish these things (ask/invite others).
St. Luke’s, Shawnee is spreading the word about the church and God’s love through coffee mugs that no only include the church name and address but a reminder: “Smile, God loves you!” Grace Cathedral, Topeka on Nov. 16 hosted “Raise the Song of Harvest Home,” a festival of hymns celebrating the fruits of the spirit. It featured the Cathedral Choir along with guest signers, as well as the First-Plymouth Choir from Lincoln, Neb., and members of the Washburn University Brass Quintet. St. David’s, Topeka offered a Dec. 14 service of Advent Lessons and Carols, and the reception afterward was an opportunity to say good-bye to Donna Osborne, who was leaving after 10 years as the church’s Director of Music. St. Luke’s, Wamego member John Desper has started a new outreach ministry, TTEM (Third Thursday Every Month), which provides a free community breakfast. Since it was started earlier this year, the fellowshipand-comfort-food offering now draws 30 to 35 people each month. Good Shepherd, Wichita offers people who knit, crochet, quilt or embroider the chance to come together each month to finish projects and enjoy time together. Together they also provided handcrafted warm items for Christmas to a program for those in need through the Wichita Public Schools. “Busy Needles” also makes prayer shawls upon request. St. Bartholomew’s, Wichita purchased 48 copies of a special cookbook to help food stamp recipients prepare meals on the average of $4-a-day in benefits. They will be paid for by a Christmas offering and handed out during Epiphany to those who use the church’s clothing ministry St. James’, Wichita invited parishioners to become pen pals with students who participate in the church’s After-School Program. Three letters a year help the students know another adult cares for them and encourages members to pray regularly for their pal. St. John’s, Wichita set a goal of $800 to provide Christmas presents for children in foster care through Saint Francis Community Services. “Christmas for Kids” donations also help provide birthday gifts and help with extra school activity expenses through the year. St. Stephen’s, Wichita celebrated its patronal feast day a bit early, on the evening of Dec. 19. It was billed as an evening of enjoying traditional food, and taking up a collection for the work of Episcopal Social Services. v
November/December 2014 • The Harvest • 9
Kansas City artist picked for All Star statue completed it will be secured to a base and shipped to Cincinnati to go on display in January.
By Melodie Woerman Editor, The Harvest Marty Pyle, a member of St. Michael and All Angels in Mission, became a baseball fan just this year. In part it was because of his home team’s success, but part of it was due to his art When the Kansas City Royals made it into the World Series, Pyle said he “got the fever like most folks in Kansas City.” But beyond that, research for a new art project steeped him in the history of one of baseball’s most treasured traditions — the All Star Game. Pyle, a longtime painter who took up sculpture just five years ago, was asked this summer to create a special statue of an iconic play from a previous All Star Game to go on display this winter at the Cincinnati Reds’ Hall of Fame and Museum, since the team will host the 2015 edition of the Midsummer Classic. He then read several books about previous All Star games, and took into account the Reds’ desire to have the statue feature some aspect of the “Big Red Machine,” the nickname for the powerhouse Reds’ teams from 1970 to 1976.
Marketing to ball clubs
An early version of a statue by Marty Pyle depicts a famous play from the 1970 All Star Game involving Ray Fosse of the Cleveland Indians (left) and Pete Rose of the Cincinnati Reds. The finished statue by Pyle, a member of St. Michael and All Angels in Mission, will go on display in January at the Cincinnati Reds’ Hall of Fame and Museum as part of an exhibit of previous All Star Games. The Reds will host the 2015 game.
Marty Pyle began
Rose vs. Fosse
Pyle’s research took him to the game-winning run in the 1970 All Star Game, when the Reds’ Pete Rose scored the winning run for the National League in the bottom of the 12th inning in a play at the plate against catcher Ray Fosse of the Cleveland Indians. As Fosse was taking a throw from the outfield, Rose barreled into him in a collision so hard it not only knocked the ball from his catcher’s mitt as he rolled backwards twice but also separated Fosse’s shoulder, an injury that nagged him for the rest of his career. Pyle then had discussions with Rick Walls, manager of the Reds’ Hall of Fame and Museum, and together they finalized this as the play the team wanted immortalized in bronze. But then the question was how to depict it artistically. After scouring video from five different camera angles, they decided to focus on the two players
creating sculptures only five years ago. Before that he had been a painter. Here he works on the clay model of a statue of Abraham Lincoln, commissioned by the city of Leavenworth.
just moments before the collision took place. Pyle, who is committed to realism in his statues, sought out people to be models for the two figures. He found men of the same height, weight and age as the players, ensuring he could get the bodies right. He even put them into baseball uniforms so the clothing would fall correctly, and took photos from every angle.
Pyle said it was easy to have one model recreate Fosse’s crouch behind home plate, but it was almost impossible to accurately get his volunteer into Rose’s fullspeed, leaning position, one Pyle said he only found elsewhere in photos of rugby and football. He had to rely on the videos. Using pictures of the actual players’ faces to go with those from his models, he set to work carving the two figures in clay.
Unlike his previous statues, this one had two added levels of difficulty. Not only does it show action — his previous ones were all posed or static — but this one is small, made to sit on top of a table. Pyle said it measures just eight inches tall, 21 inches long and 10 inches deep. The head of each figure is only one inch tall. He said he “enjoyed the challenge” of working at such a small size but found it was much harder to work in this scale than, for example, the nine-foot-tall statue of Abraham Lincoln he created in 2009 for the city of Leavenworth (this was featured in the September/October 2009 issue of this newspaper). For this work he had to use much smaller tools to create the level of detail needed to make the statue realistic. In September he completed his clay model and took it to a foundry in Lawrence where, using the “lost wax” method of casting, they created molds and ultimately create Pyle’s work in bronze. Once
Three to be ordained priests on Jan. 10 Bishop Dean Wolfe will ordain three people to the Sacred Order of Priests during a diocesan ordination service set for 10:30 a.m. at Saturday, Jan. 10 at Grace Cathedral, 701 SW 8th Ave. in Topeka. The ordinands are Don Compier, Steven King and Vivian Orndorff. All three were ordained as transitional deacons by Bishop
Wolfe on June 7. Compier serves as the dean of the Bishop Kemper School for Ministry, an institution dedicated to local education of people for lay and ordained ministry in the church. It is owned by the Dioceses of Kansas, West Missouri, Nebraska and Western Kansas and is headquartered in Topeka. He was assigned during his
diaconate to St. Michael and All Angels in Mission. He has a Ph.D. in theology from Emory University. King is the curate at St. Thomas’, Overland Park, where he has served since June. He is a May 2014 graduate of Virginia Theological Seminary in Alexandria, Va. Before going to seminary he was a member of St. Margaret’s, Lawrence.
Orndorff is serving as curate at Trinity Church in The Woodlands, Texas, following her graduation in May from the Episcopal Seminary of the Southwest in Austin, Texas. Before going to seminary she was a member of St. Luke’s, Wamego. All members of the diocese are invited to attend. A reception will follow the service. v
Pyle said that when he started creating sculptures five years ago, he decided to market his work to Major League Baseball teams, knowing that they often commission statues of famous players. “I sent out brochures, but you never really know if it will get into the hands of the right person,” he said. With the Cincinnati Reds he got lucky. Hall of Fame and Museum manager Wells called him, and they started discussing projects Pyle might do for them that would fit the team’s needs. The Reds’ selection to host the 2015 All Star Game proved the right opportunity. “I was just thrilled,” Pyle said. When asked if he hoped to do more sports-themed statues, he said he’d like to. “But I hope every sculpture I do would lead to other things,” he added. If the Reds can get permission from Rose’s and Fosse’s agents, they plan to create 25 replicas of Pyle’s statue and sell them to collectors.
Sharing art with kids
For the past five years, Pyle has taken his love of and commitment to art beyond his own work. He and Dr. Ken Walker, St. Michael’s director of music and art ministries, started a summer Youth Arts Camp at the church. For one week each June, 75 young people, 50 of them from at-risk schools, participate in workshops that expose them to visual and performing arts, working with four professionals each day. The event culminates in a display of their work. St. Michael’s also has benefited from a new branch of artistic expression Pyle has undertaken in recent years — iconography. He has written icons of St. Michael and a Madonna and Child as gifts to the congregation from clergy who have served there but moved on to other churches. A portfolio of Pyle’s work, both sculpture and painting, can be viewed on his website, http:// www.mpyleart.com/ v
Clergy news Deacon Karen Wichael, St. Michael and All Angels, Mission, has announced that she will retire at the end of the year as the parish’s Director of Pastoral Care. She will remain assigned to the congregation for diaconal ministry. Condolences go to Deacon Steve Segebrecht, Trinity, Lawrence, on the death of his mother, Margaret Louise Hill Segebrecht., on Nov. 23. She was 96. v
10 • The Harvest • November/December 2014
National and international news Anglican news briefs
The Rev. Libby Lane will be the new Bishop of Stockport, the first woman to be appointed a bishop in the Church of England.
Anglican Communion News Service and Episcopal News Service Christmas celebrations cancelled in Peshawar, Pakistan. The Bishop of Peshawar has said that, following what he called “another unimaginable horror,” the Church of Pakistan decided to cancel its Christmas celebrations. The Church in Pakistan’s Bishop Humphrey Peters spoke solemnly about the aftermath of the attack by the Taliban on the Army School in Peshawar Cantt that left 132 children and nine adults dead. The school is located just a few blocks from St. John’s Anglican Cathedral. The bishop said, “How can we celebrate and host parties when our city has been so devastated? We will still gather to worship but in a simple, stripped back and prayerful way.” Archbishop Welby, world faith leaders pledge to end slavery. Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby joined world Christian, Muslim, Hindu, Buddhist and Jewish leaders in Rome Dec. 3 to sign a historic declaration to end modern slavery. The Joint Declaration of Religious Leaders against Modern Slavery the leaders signed underlines that modern slavery — in terms of human trafficking, forced labor and prostitution, organ trafficking, and any relationship that fails to respect the fundamental conviction that all people are equal and have the same freedom and dignity — is a crime against humanity, and must be recognized as such by everyone and by all nations. Western New York Episcopal, Roman Catholic bishops speak with one voice. Bishop R. William Franklin of the Episcopal Diocese of Western New York and Bishop Richard J. Malone of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Buffalo are asking members of their respective churches to do what they can to ensure that the new economic growth and opportunity in Western New York is shared among all people. The joint pastoral letter, co-written by both bishops, was issued on the Third Sunday of Advent, Dec. 14. It is believed to be the first joint pastoral letter in the history of the two dioceses. In announcing the letter, Malone explained that their goal “is really to raise consciousness among our own parishioners, both in the Catholic and Episcopal dioceses.” Presiding Bishop offers statement on release of Cuban prisoners. On Dec. 17 Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori issued this statement on the release of prisoners between the United States and Cuba. “I give thanks for the release today of prisoners held by Cuba and the United States. The return of Alan Gross and the remaining three of the Cuban Five to their homes will bring great rejoicing to their families and their nations. This action also opens the door to regularized relations between these two countries for the first time in 50 years. The Episcopal Church rejoices with these families and we have deep hope for the possibilities of reconciliation and exchange between the divided parts of the Church and humanity.” Episcopal schools celebrate 50 years of education as mission. The charisms of Episcopal schools make them particularly suited to forming leaders for an increasingly globalized and interconnected world, Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori told a gathering Nov. 21 in Anaheim, Calif. Some 570 teachers, heads of schools, bishops, parish rectors, administrators, chaplains and others from across the world gathered Nov. 20-22 to celebrate Episcopal education and the 50th anniversary of the National Association of Episcopal Schools. The organization encompasses more than 1,000 schools in the United States and other countries, ranging in size from the seven-student St. Timothy’s School in Compton, Calif., to the largest, Iolani, with more than 2,000 students in Honolulu. Former South Australian premier, Lynn Arnold, ordained an Anglican priest. The Rev. Lynn Arnold, who was Labor of South Australia premier from September 1992 to December 1993, was one of seven deacons ordained to the Order of Priests at a ceremony at St. Peter’s Cathedral in North Adelaide on Dec. 6. Arnold, 65, who will continue his role with the “Faith in the Public Square” project at St. Peter’s Cathedral, said he felt the same sense of awe as when he was ordained as a deacon last year. “This has been no light decision, but its follow-on will be no less easy,” he said. v
She will be consecrated at a ceremony at York Minister on Jan. 26, 2015.
Photo by Kippa Matthews, Church of England
Church of England names its first woman bishop Episcopal News Service and Church of England reports The British government on Dec. 17 announced that the Rev. Libby Lane, currently vicar of St. Peter’s, Hale, and St. Elizabeth’s, Ashley, will be the new bishop of Stockport. The appointment makes her the first female bishop in the Church of England. She is 48. As Bishop of Stockport she will serve as a suffragan (assistant) bishop in the Diocese of Chester. She will be consecrated as the eighth bishop of Stockport at a ceremony at York Minister on Jan. 26, 2015. The announcement came one month to the day after the vote by General Synod enacting legislation enabling women to be ordained as bishops. After the announcement at Stockport Town Hall Lane said, “I am grateful for, though somewhat daunted by, the confidence placed in me by the Diocese of Chester. This is unexpected and very exciting. “On this historic day as the Church of England announces the first woman nominated to be bishop, I am very conscious of all those who have gone before me, women and men, who for decades have looked forward to this moment. But most of all I am thankful to God. “The church faces wonderful opportunities, to proclaim afresh, in this generation, the good news of Jesus and to build His kingdom. The Church of England is called to serve all the people of this country, and being present in every community, we communicate our faith best when our lives build up the lives of others, especially the most vulnerable. I am excited by the possibilities and challenges ahead.”
Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby said he was “absolutely delighted” by Lane’s appointment. “Her Christ-centered life, calmness and clear determination to serve the church and the community make her a wonderful choice. “She will be bishop in a diocese that has been outstanding in its development of people, and she will make a major contribution. She and her family will be in my prayers during the initial excitement, and the pressures of moving.” Episcopal Church Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori said the church gives thanks for Lane’s appointment. “We give thanks for her ministry and that of so many other women in the Church of England, and pray that others will soon be named as bishops in other sees,” Bishop Jefferts Schori said. “Would that all the people of God were able to see the image of God reflected in their ordained and lay leaders, and to see themselves reflected as well.” Archbishop of York John Sentamu said, “It is with great joy that on January 26, 2015 — the feast of Timothy and Titus, companions of Paul — I will be in York Minster, presiding over the consecration of the Rev. Libby Lane as bishop suffragan of Stockport. “Libby brings a wealth of experience in parish ministry, in hospital and further education chaplaincy, in vocations work and the nurture of ordinands. “I am delighted that she will exercise her episcopal ministry with joy, prayerfulness, and trust in God.” Bishop of Chester Peter Forster, under whom Lane has served, said, “Libby has had a varied and distinguished ministry, and is currently a first-rate parish priest.
She has already demonstrated her ability to contribute nationally through her representative role in the House of Bishops, on behalf of the northwest England dioceses. “As the first woman bishop in the Church of England she will face many challenges as well as enjoying many opportunities to be an ambassador for Jesus Christ. I have no doubt that she has the gifts and determination to be an outstanding bishop. “I am delighted at her designation as bishop of Stockport after a lengthy process of discernment across the Church of England and beyond.” The nomination of Lane as the new bishop of Stockport was approved by Queen Elizabeth. Lane succeeds the Rt. Rev. Robert Atwell, who is now the bishop of Exeter.
A priest for 20 years
Lane was ordained as a priest in 1994 and has served a number of parish and chaplaincy roles in the north of England in the dioceses of Blackburn, York and Chester. For the past eight years she has served as vicar of St. Peter’s and St. Elizabeth’s. She is one of eight clergy women from the Church of England elected as Participant Observers in the House of Bishops, as the representative from the dioceses of the north west. Her husband, George, is also a priest; they were one of the first married couples in the Church of England to be ordained together. George is coordinating chaplain at Manchester Airport, licensed in the Diocese of Manchester. They have two grown children. Her interests include encouraging social action, learning to play the saxophone, supporting Manchester United, reading and doing cryptic crosswords. v
November/December 2014 • The Harvest • 11
Grant to ERD will aid mothers, children in Africa their own communities. Alongside ADDRO in Ghana, Episcopal Relief & Development is partnering with Anglican Church of Kenya Development Services of Nyanza and the Health and Development Department of Zambia Anglican Council. Along with increasing availability and access of care, the project aims to address barriers such as stigma, lack of transportation and cost of treatment. Improving families’ financial stability is one of the overall goals of the program partnerships, with savings and loan groups becoming widely successful.
Episcopal Relief & Development Episcopal Relief & Development will soon expand its maternal and child health programs in Ghana, Kenya and Zambia, thanks in part by a $1 million grant from the Margaret A. Cargill Foundation. The goal of the organization’s “Empowering Rural Communities to Improve Child and Maternal Health” project is to end preventable child deaths by promoting life-saving behaviors and increasing the availability and use of high-impact health services in areas where people live far from medical facilities. Rob Radtke, the organization’s president, said, “I am very grateful for this generous support of Episcopal Relief & Development’s local partnerships on maternal and child health. This grant will expand and strengthen existing integrated development programs that serve vulnerable populations in rural areas — particularly children under the age of five and families affected by HIV/AIDS. With this support, we can equip our partners to reach beyond the end of the road, where the need for community-based prevention and health care is greatest.”
The “Empowering Rural Communities to Improve Child and Maternal Health” project will equip mothers and community health workers to reduce child deaths and illness due to malaria, diarrhea and pneumonia. These preventable and treatable diseases
Photo courtesy of Episcopal Relief & Development
A grant of $1 million will help Episcopal Relief & Development expand its programs for maternal and child health in Ghana, Kenya and Zambia. The goal is to end preventable child deaths and increase health services.
are the top three killers of children under five in sub-Saharan Africa. The project has three key strategies: Prevention: helping families and communities take basic steps to prevent disease, such as using mosquito nets over sleeping areas and taking children for immunizations H e a l t h C a r e - S e e k i n g : equipping mothers and other primary caregivers to recognize symptoms, provide care at home, and know when to seek health services Local Health Provision:
promoting availability of basic health care through trained and equipped community health workers and other volunteers using Integrated Community Case Management Hilary Asiah, health coordinator for Episcopal Relief & Development’s partner in Ghana, ADDRO (Anglican Diocesan Development Relief Organization), said helping the people of Ghana who live in rural and deprived communities will be a challenge. “This grant will support ADDRO in implementing effective, lowcost interventions to address the
multiplicity of health challenges many communities face, through preventive care, awareness raising, and reduction of psychosocial barriers such as stigma.”
Front line health workers
Health workers interact with mothers and other primary caregivers through home visits, community events and meetings of mothers’ and other groups. They provide basic treatment at the community level and refer serious cases to health facilities, ensuring that more children have access to lifesaving treatments in
Anglican Communion agencies offer ‘Pastors and Disasters’ toolkit Episcopal Relief & Development
Episcopal Relief & Development and a working group of 12 international partner agencies have published “Pastors and Disasters: a Toolkit for Community-Based Disaster Risk Reduction & Management” to improve disaster response efforts within the Anglican relief and development community. This toolkit is the culmination of three years of collaborative effort to create, adapt and field-test resources that can be used in a variety of contexts, based on local resources and expertise. The working group included partners from Africa, Asia, the Pacific, Latin America and the United States.
The contents of the toolkit include: Anglican Theological Reflections: Scriptural reflections from church leaders in El Salvador, Sri Lanka and Burundi; Core Competencies: Descriptions of the four skill sectors necessary for disaster risk reduction and management (Community Mobilization, Risk Assessment, DRR Implementation and
Disaster Response); Capacity Assessment Worksheet: A survey designed to be used continually during a local committee’s work to assess current strengths and identify areas of growth; and Tools: 24 modules designed to boost skills, knowledge and practice in the four Core Competency areas It also features additional case studies, a comprehensive list of references and a helpful glossary of terms and definitions.
Disasters, health concerns
Rob Radtke, president of Episcopal Relief & Development, said, “In a context of seemingly larger and more frequent natural disasters like Typhoon Ruby in the Philippines, as well as global health concerns such as Ebola in West Africa, the importance of working together to exchange knowledge and reduce disaster risk is difficult to overstate.” He added, “By building relationships at every level — regional, churchwide and within communities — we become stronger and quicker to mobilize both before and in the aftermath of disasters. This toolkit is an incredible gift to our global community,
nurturing partnership and solidarity to ensure the security of those most vulnerable.”
Twelve countries involved
In addition to Episcopal Relief & Development, the working group included churches and agencies from Sri Lanka, Burundi, El Salvador, Mozambique, Myanmar, Melanesia, South Sudan, Brazil, Australia (Anglican Board of Mission), China (The Amity Foundation) and the United Kingdom (Anglican Alliance). The “Pastors and Disasters” toolkit is available in PDF format from Episcopal Relief & Development’s website, www.episcopalrelief.org. Just search for Pastors and Disasters. The toolkit currently is available in both US and A4 size, and it is being translated into Spanish, French and Portuguese. These editions will be published digitally in 2015. Nagulan Nesiah, program officer for Episcopal Relief & Development, said, “It is my hope that bringing communities together around disaster risk reduction will seed relationships and practices that can grow to support sustainable development year-round.” v
Additionally, the program in Kenya is promoting community health financing associations that negotiate service agreements with the nearest health facility. By collecting regular financial contributions, these associations ensure that farming families are able to pay for needed health services throughout the year, rather than just after harvest. “Physical, economic and psychosocial health are deeply integrated, so our strategies for improving overall well-being must be also,” said Abagail Nelson, Episcopal Relief & Development’s Senior Vice President of Programs. “Some programs may not seem directly related to health, and yet they can impact health in a variety of ways. For example, a micro-finance loan can support a growing business, which can contribute to household income, which can support better nutrition or cover medical expenses.” v
Volunteers needed for 2015 General Convention Volunteers for a variety of tasks are needed for next year’s 78th General Convention, which takes place in Salt Lake City June 25 to July 3. The every-threeyears event draws more than 800 people from the 109 dioceses in 16 countries that make up The Episcopal Church. Volunteer shifts range from 2 to 6 hours in a variety of areas throughout convention where help is needed. Volunteers for the General Convention are members of the church who come together in faith to assist, support and serve the Convention, its officers, deputations, staff and commissions. They provide a welcoming and safe environment through hands-on, behind-the-scenes work as an extension of the Executive Office of the General Convention. People of other faith backgrounds and organizations who are interested and willing to share their time and talents with Episcopalians are also welcome to volunteer. The 78th General Convention will see the Episcopal Church elect a Presiding Bishop, debate various legislation and determine the budget for the next triennium. Transportation, housing and all other expenses are the responsibility of the volunteer. Vo l u n t e e r s c a n s i g n u p o n l i n e a t https://2015generalconvention.my-trs.com/ v
12 • The Harvest • November/December 2014
Reflections on faith and life
Sharing the Good News
Advent darkness, Christmas light The Most Rev. Katharine Jefferts Schori Presiding Bishop and Primate The Episcopal Church
1 Diocesan office closed for New Year’s Day
7 Youth Commission Meeting, St. Andrew’s, Emporia
10 Ordinations, Grace Cathedral, Topeka
Classes at Bishop Kemper School for Ministry, Upton Hall and Grace Cathedral, Topeka (through Jan. 11)
11 Bishop Wolfe at Grace, Ottawa 17 Miqra (youth Bible-based weekend), Grace Cathedral, Topeka (through Jan. 19)
8 Bishop Wolfe at St. Paul’s, Leavenworth 14 Classes at Bishop Kemper School for Ministry, Upton Hall and Grace Cathedral, Topeka (through Feb. 15) 15 Bishop Wolfe at St. Aidan’s, Olathe 17 Council of Trustees meeting, Upton Hall
18 Bishop Wolfe at Church of the Covenant, Junction City 20 Council of Trustees meeting, Upton Hall 25 Bishop Wolfe at St. Mary’s, Galena
For more news and information, as well as calendar listings, visit the diocesan website:
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EpiscopalDioceseofKansas Nativity window, First Presbyterian Church, Hartford City, Ind.
we heard his urgent “come and follow”? God is among us and within us and around us, encountering, nudging, loving, transforming the world and its creatures toward the glorious dream the shepherds announced so many years ago, toward the beloved community of prophetic dreams, and the nightwatch that proclaims “all is well, fear not, the Lord is here.” May Christ be born anew in you this Christmastide. May his light burn in you, and may you labor to spread it in the darkness. The people who walked in darkness have seen a great light, and it is the harbinger of peace for all creation. v
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The altar hanging at an English Advent service was made of midnight blue, with these words across its top: “We thank you that darkness reminds us of light.” Facing all who gathered there to give thanks were images of night creatures — a large moth, an owl, a badger and a bat — cryptic and somewhat mysterious creatures that can only be encountered in the darkness. As light ebbs from the days and the skies of fall, many in the Northern Hemisphere associate dark with the spooks and skeletons of secular Hallowe’en celebrations. That English church has reclaimed the connection between creator, creation and the potential holiness of all that is. It is a fitting reorientation toward the coming of One who has altered those relationships toward new possibilities for healing and redemption. Advent leads us into darkness and decreasing light. Our bodies slow imperceptibly with shorter days and longer nights, and the merriness and frantic activity around us are often merely signs of eager hunger for light and healing and wholeness. The Incarnation, the coming of God among us in human flesh, happened in such a quiet and out of the way place that few noticed at first. Yet the impact on human existence has been like a bolt of lightning that continues to grow and generate new life and fire in all who share that hunger. Jesus is among us like a flitting moth — will we notice his presence in the street-sleeper? He pierces the dark like a silent, streaking owl seeking food for hungry and defenseless nestlings. He will overturn this world’s unjust foundations like badgers undermining a crooked wall. Like the bat’s sonar, his call comes to each one uniquely — have
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