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Volume 42 No. 5 August 2011

Progress and Hope in Bondeau

Residents of Bidaw Island will soon move into these sturdy new homes (inset photo above) in the village of Nouvo Bidaw, built by the South Florida Haiti Project on property at Ste. Marie Madeleine parish in Bondeau, Haiti.

Photo by David Gury

Parish finds much to celebrate on Feast of Ste. Marie Madeleine By David Gury On July 23 and 24, the parish community of Ste. Marie Madeleine in Bondeau, Haiti, celebrated the

July 22 feast day of its patron saint. There was much to celebrate. A highlight of the weekend was the dedication of the village of Nouvo Bidaw: the promise of new lives for the 40 families — 145 people — from the rock and mangrove island of Bidaw off the coast near Bondeau, where they live in shanties constructed of whatever scrap material they can find. The island is subject to frequent flooding, and has no fresh water or soil that will sustain crops; all supplies, including water and food, must be transported from the mainland by dugout canoes, taking 40 minutes round trip. The new village on the Ste. Marie Madeleine (SMM) campus is constructed around a village square with porches covered to protect from rain and sun. The construction is CBS with wood trusses covered in galvanized steel; each house cost approximately $3,750. Housing units are built around the village square with a large raised circle in the middle for plants and flowers. The plan to build the village and relocate the residents of Bidaw began with a $50,000

Trinity Cathedral to mark anniversary of 9/11 with memorial Eucharist Trinity Cathedral, Miami, will observe the tenth anniversary of the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, with a multi-media commemoration and memorial Eucharist at 6 p.m. on Sunday, Sept.11. The service will include a candlelight tribute, as well as singers from throughout South Florida in a

donation last summer to the South Florida Haiti Project (SFHP), and additional donations have made it possible to complete the project. The highway passing through Bondeau is being transformed into a major road going west from Port au Prince. This construction is funded by post-earthquake donations from the European Union. The top engineers for the building company are using a few rooms in the Maison d’Amitie (Friendship House), the guest house at SMM in exchange for some cash payment, along with professional services in developing the parish grounds. An elevated road has been excavated from the main highway to the Maison d’Amitie. The road company did the excavation for Nouvo Bidaw, as well as the grounds of SMM school and the roads and grounds of both the guest house and teacher/staff housing. Excavation of the site for a new church building located on the highway was given top priorSee BONDEAU, Page 2 presentation of the Requiem Mass by Gabriel Fauré, which was the music chosen to substitute for planned programming on the BBC Promenade Concerts the evening of 9/11/2001. The Miami Chapter of the American Guild of Organists is assembling the choir for the service; anyone interested in participating should contact Trinity’s music director, Matthew Steynor, at ■




The Net, August 2011



House blessing

See p. 15 for stories about two other ways that parishioners from Southeast Florida are exploring partnership with ministries in our companion Diocese of Haiti. The South Florida Haiti Project began in 2003 as a partnership between St. Gregory’s, Boca Raton, and Ste Marie Madeleine in Bondeau, and now includes three other Southeast Florida congregations — St. Paul’s, Delray Beach; Holy Spirit, West Palm Beach; and Good Shepherd, Tequesta — as well as St. David’s Episcopal Church in Wayne, Pa. For more information on the ministries in Bondeau and how to help, visit the SFHP website,

BONDEAU from Page 1 ity, in order to be completed before the feast day. During the week before the celebration, a group of five people from Connecticut and New York, including two senior seminary students from Yale, built a playground with swings and a see-saw on the SMM campus. The children of Bondeau had never seen a playground and had to learn how to pump a swing and balance on the see-saw. A large canvas cover was raised to provide shade for the many events taking place over the weekend, and seats for 400 were provided. On Saturday morning a couple was joined in marriage before a large crowd from the community and the parish. Immediately following the wedding, with the wedding party in attendance, 20 children and adults were baptized by SMM’s priest in charge, Fr. Kesner Gracia, with family and friends filling nearly all the seats in the temporary church. Late on Saturday afternoon, the SMM school of couture and sewing held its first graduation, awarding diplomas to seven students who had completed three years of study. The graduates wore matching hand-made suits, and as part of the graduation exercises, presented a fashion show. Deacon Anita Thorstad of St. Gregory’s, Boca Raton, who also has a growing ministry at SMM, is developing a plan for some of the graduates to begin a business making school uniforms and fashion outfits. Morning light comes to Bondeau shortly after 4:30 a.m., and with the first light on Sunday, many began work on preparations for the celebration of the Ste. Marie Madeleine Festival. Twelve priests from around the diocese, along with 10 seminarians, choirs and lay leaders from churches in Jeannette and Petit Trou, had arrived Saturday evening, with many spending the night in the guest house. Over four hundred participants were expected, and preparation to feed all with rice, beans, chicken, turkey and goat were well underway. By 5:30 a.m., Fr. Kesner and his altar guild were busy setting up for the mass, putting in place the processional cross, bishop’s chair, torches, holy water container and censers that had been borrowed from other parishes. Coffee and breakfast were prepared for the many visitors. Shortly before 9 a.m., Bishop Jean Zaché Duracin and his wife arrived, signaling time for all to vest for the service. Despite the heat and primitive conditions of the outdoor worship space, all were vested with well-pressed white cassocks. The mass began with a procession of clergy, seminarians, Archdeacons Kesner Gracia, Kesner Ajax and Noe Bernier and the bishop, led by

Photos by David Gury

Playground Above: Bishop Jean Zaché Duracin blesses the new homes in Nouvo Bidaw.

Left: Children enjoy the new see-saw on the campus of Ste. Marie Madeleine. Children in Bondeau had never seen a seesaw or a swing before the new playground equipment was installed, but quickly learned how to use it.

torches and thurifers. There were many more people present than the 400 seats could accommodate. Special guests included local heads of government and national dignitaries, including two senators and the Minister of Education. Choirs from several neighboring parishes joined the SMM choir to sing portions of the service, with SMM’s music director providing rousing accompaniment on a simple keyboard. Bishop Duracin confirmed 19 people, including children and adults. The service lasted nearly two and a half hours. Once the mass was completed, there was a procession from the tent to the main highway, about a third of a mile down the hill on the road that is part of the SMM campus. The corner property owned by SMM had been cleared by the road company and designated as the site for a new church building. Bishop Duracin laid a cornerstone in concrete, marking the spot and beginning the process toward having the “real” church building that the community is eager to have for its worship. Fr. Kesner Gracia and the architect presented plans for the church building to introduce the community and the dignitaries to the project and encourage them to contribute to a fund to build the church. Despite meager resources, the parish has established a building fund, which already has raised $500. From the building site the procession went back up the road to Nouvo Bidaw. Bishop Duracin blessed and toured the village, which is a model for future housing in Haiti. As soon as the latrines are completed, the village will be ready for families to move in. Although the new homes will be rent-free, the residents of Nouvo Bidaw will have the kinds of

responsibilities required of paying tenants anywhere. Before they move into their new homes, the residents will be asked to agree to regulations for the village concerning sanitation, care for the buildings and grounds, and responsibility for damage to village property, as well as any other regulations that may be established by the village leadership. Because Nouvo Bidaw is a church community, residents will also be asked to abide by standards of Christian behavior. The village will be governed by leadership that will include representatives of the residents and a member of SMM’s vestry. The procession continued up the hill past the school buildings and other housing units on the campus to the Maison d’Amitie. Completed in early 2010 with funding from SFHP, the guest house is large and comfortable, with 14 guest rooms, a kitchen, dining room gallery halls across the front of the building on two floors and a covered second floor veranda for meetings and relaxing. Bishop Duracin dedicated this building and blessed it. The bishop last visited SMM in 2007 for the dedication of the first building, SMM elementary school. In the four years since then, Bondeau has grown spiritually as the infrastructure has expanded. The variety of worship services and the size of the congregations, which include many visitors and members of the community, mark significant growth in the mission work of Christian formation taking place in this part of Haiti. The Holy Spirit is doing powerful work in Bondeau. ■ David Gury, a member of St. Gregory’s, Boca Raton, is chair of the diocesan Haiti Task Force and president of the South Florida Haiti Project.




The Net, August 2011


Young adult ministry at All Saints: “serious about faith and seriously fun” By Mary W. Cox, editor The Rev. Angela Cortiñas, associate priest for children, youth and young adult ministry at All Saints, Ft. Lauderdale, remembers her post-college years as “such a formational time,” when she found a faith community in the Episcopal Church that changed her life. Now an important element of her ministry is to make sure All Saints is offering young adults that sense of community. One place that community is evolving is in conversation over drinks or coffee and appetizers at a local pub or restaurant on the third Friday night of each month. “Sometimes we talk about Jesus — sometimes we don’t,” said All Saints parishioner Hunter Ruffin, one of the leaders of a handful of young adults — four or five people — who had begun this kind of gathering about a year before Cortiñas came to the parish last summer. Now Cortiñas calls Ruffin “my right-hand man” in the ministry that’s recently been named SEEYA! (Southeast Episcopal Young Adults). On All Saints’ website SEEYA! is described “as a COMMUNITY of young adults dedicated to exploring life together.” The description continues: “We are single, married, married with children, and partnered. We are young professionals, undergraduate students, graduate students, unemployed or underemployed. We are serious about faith and seriously fun. We are 21 to 40. We are seeking a faith home, questioning faith and what it means, and seeking others to explore faith and fun. Above all, we are committed to building a stronger faith community for young adults in South Florida!” “Young adults” can be a broad age group, Cortiñas says, but the core group involved in SEEYA! is mid20s to mid-30s. She is adamant that it’s “not a singles group,” but adds that although a number of married or partnered couples participate, none of those in the group at present have children. Couples with children tend to be “in a different part of their lives,” she said.

Theological brew

Photo by Victoria Fletcher

Liesel Winchester, Teppei Kono and Rebecca Wallace enjoy conversation at one of SEEYA!’s Friday night Theological Brew gatherings.

It’s not a campus ministry either, Ruffin said. “There’s a need for that, but we don’t fill that need.” This was an issue addressed at the diocesan Young Adult Summit last month, at which Ruffin was elected as one of the directors for “Local Young Adult Ministry.” (See story below.) Both Cortiñas and Ruffin emphasize that SEEYA! is designed to reach out to young adults who have drifted away from church, or have never had a faith community, but who want that sense of connection and want their lives to make a difference in the world. But often these are people who find the idea of church threatening — or boring — and who just don’t get up that early on Sundays, so, “We’re going back to our roots,” says Cortiñas, “going out to where the people are.” “It’s not that we’re taking God out into the community,” said Ruffin. “God is already there.” The monthly Friday night gatherings were originally called “Theology on Tap” till Ruffin discovered that a Roman Catholic young adult ministry had copyrighted that name. Now SEEYA!’s Friday nights are “Theological Brew,” with a Twitter feed, @Theologi-

calBrew, for announcing times and locations of events. Topics of conversation come from the group, and can range from jobs and taxes, to addressing issues of injustice in the community and the world, to “talking about Jesus.” Some members of the group are from other faiths — or no faith — but they want a non-judgmental community in which they can explore the questions of spirituality and how to live a good and meaningful life. Cortiñas says that she continues to listen, to learn from the group and to incorporate their ideas into the ministry. In addition to Theological Brew, SEEYA! also offers a quarterly “Reel-2-Real” series of varied (“not necessarily a deep movie”) films, with theological discussion following the viewing. There have also been volunteer outreach events and intergenerational “Sunday Fun Days,” with activities like paddleboarding on the New River. More of these kinds of events are planned. Young adults aren’t necessarily people who will give their money, Cortiñas says, but “they’ll give their time…they show up for outreach. They show up for community and fellowship.” Offering opportunities to make a difference, meeting people where they are, authenticity are all vital for ministry with young adults, say both Cortiñas and Ruffin, but it always comes back to that sense of community. “Communion is more than a worship service in church,” Ruffin reflected. “It’s bringing a community together…and literally breaking bread together. Coming to church isn’t even part of the conversation — it’s about that community, at that time, in that place.” To make that happen, Cortiñas said, “It’s a matter of reaching out — there’s nothing to hold you back but yourself.” ■ For more information about SEEYA!, go to, or follow @TheologicalBrew on Twitter, or email

“Summit” launches a new diocesan ministry with young adults By Pamela Sahdev Thirty-one young — and not-so-young — adults from the North Palm Beach, Broward and North and South Dade Deaneries gathered at the Chapel of the Venerable Bede on the University of Miami Campus on July 10 for the first annual diocesan Young Adult Summit, a first step in developing a Diocesan Young Adult Ministry. The day began prayerfully with the Eucharist celebrated by Fr. Frank Corbishley, Episcopal campus chaplain at the university and priest-in-charge at Venerable Bede. After opening remarks by Summit leader Michael Sahdev, Bishop Leo Frade greeted Summit participants and joined them for lunch in the Chapel’s courtyard. The featured speaker for the day was Lauren Caldwell, Province IV Young Adult Coordinator. She spoke of the challenges of forming a Young Adult Ministry, highlighting the need for this to be separate and distinct from Youth Ministry, since the two age groups have very different expectations, talents and needs. She went on to express her delight that the Summit had attracted such a large number of participants, adding that many young adult ministries begin with

only a handful of people. Caldwell urged the group to attend the Province IV Young Adult Summit to be held Oct. 29-31 in Atlanta, Ga. Both Sahdev and the Rev. Christina Encinosa, priest-in-charge of Holy Redeemer, Lake Worth, serve on the Provincial Design Team for this event. Sahdev addressed the Summit, saying that they have come of age and are called to take their place in moving the church forward into the next generation of leadership. Their time has come to unite, he said, to evangelize and to grow a strong church for the future. In the round table discussion, ideas were focused on ways to attract young adults to the church, as well as to involve currently inactive young adult members. Plans were discussed for fund raising; attending events such as the Provincial Summit and General Convention; and setting a calendar for the remainder of the year. Recognizing that the term “Young Adult” includes people in various stages of life, Sahdev proposed that the Summit adopt a two-track structure for the Young Adult Ministry: Campus Ministry, which would unite and minister to our college students wherever they attend college; and Local Young Adult Ministry, which would be a ministry for those in their 20’s and 30’s living locally in a variety of life stages, married or unmarried; with or without children; young profes-

sionals, those beginning careers and those seeking work. The two tracks will work together to keep both groups connected, using Facebook and Skype in addition to some in-person meetings, and will sponsor events that can be held either together or separately, focusing on major events in the summer and holidays when our college students become “local” again. This structure was adopted by the Summit participants. The group elected officers: Director of Campus Ministry, Michael Sahdev; Directors of Local Young Adult Ministry, Daniel Ledo and Hunter Ruffin; and Communication Directors, Douglas Dozier and Melanie Veizega. Meetings will be held every third Saturday of the month. The Advent Summit is scheduled for Dec. 17. Meeting locations will be announced soon. All young adults are encouraged to become involved in this new ministry. For more information contact: Michael Sahdev,; Hunter Ruffin,; or Daniel Ledo, ■ Pamela Sahdev, a member of St. Benedict’s, Plantation, is the Broward Deanery Youth Coordinator and a Broward Deanery lay representative to Executive Board.


THE The Net, August 2011

Magness will be preacher for 42nd Diocesan Convention The Rt. Rev. James B. “Jay” Magness, bishop suffragan for Federal Ministries of the Episcopal Church, will preach at the Eucharist at our 42nd Diocesan Convention, hosted by the South Palm Beach Deanery, Nov. 11-12 at St. Joseph’s, Boynton Beach. Because the convention begins on Nov. 11, the traditional date of Veterans’ Day, and because that date is exactly two months after the tenth anniversary of the 9/11 attacks, the convention planning committee felt that Magness, whose office oversees military and prison chaplaincies, would be a particularly appropriate choice as preacher. Local Magness first responders will also be invited to participate in the convention. Prior to his June 2010 consecration as bishop, Magness served as Canon for Mission and Diocesan Administration in the Diocese of Southern Virginia and Canon to the Ordinary in the Diocese of Kentucky. He retired from the U.S. Navy in 2003 with the rank of captain, serving as command chaplain of U.S. Joint Forces Command and fleet chaplain for the U.S. Fleet Forces Command. Prior to those assignments, from 1997 to 2000 he was on the Navy Chief of Chaplains’ staff working as personnel manager of the Navy Chaplain Corps. He also served as an enlisted person in the Navy in the 1960s. Again this year the Convention Banquet will be a multi-course Italian feast prepared by “Chef Marty,” South Palm Beach Dean Marty Zlatic. Proceeds from the banquet will benefit the ministries of the Diocese of Dominican Republic, one of our four companion dioceses. Lodging for convention delegates and guests will be at the Hampton Inn and Suites, 1475 West Gateway Boulevard, Boynton Beach. (Hotel reservations can be made at 561-369-0018; to receive the convention rate, be sure mention the Diocese of Southeast Florida.) Some pre-convention deadlines to note are: Aug. 18 — Proposed changes to Canons submitted to Constitution and Canons Committee; Sept. 27 — Resolutions submitted to Secretary of Convention (Canon Richard Miller, email:; Oct. 12 — Proposed changes to Canons presented to delegates; Oct. 27 — Nominations (with biographies of the candidates) submitted to Secretary of Convention. Copies of resolutions and nominations should also be sent to Diocesan Coordinator Gail McShane, Nominations are needed for the following positions to be filled by elections at convention: One lay and two clergy members of the Standing Committee; one clergy member of the Disciplinary Board; one lay member of the Trustees of the University of the South; and one lay member of the Cathedral Chapter. The following Executive Board positions must be filled by election at Fall Convocations of the deaneries: North Palm Beach — dean and lay representative; South Palm Beach — clergy and lay representatives; Broward — clergy representative; North Dade — clergy and lay representatives; South Dade — lay representative; Keys — lay representative. Fall convocation dates (all in October) are posted on the diocesan calendar at; times and locations, as well as additional details about convention, will be added as that information becomes available. ■



Stomski to head Diocesan School; fall registration continues Bishop Leo Frade has named Fr. William Stomski as the new director of the Diocesan School for Christian Studies, filling the vacancy left by the death of Fr. Perry Fuller last month.(See obituary, p. 13.) Fuller’s wife, Pamela, continues to serve as Diocesan School Administrator. A former Lutheran pastor, Stomski was ordained to the priesthood in 2005. He is the chaplain and sacred studies teacher at St. Joseph’s School in Boynton Beach, and is also well known to many Diocesan School students, Stomski past and present, having taught a variety of classes in the past eight years, including Church History, Homiletics and Liturgics. He has completed three years of course work in the Doctor of Ministry program at Virginia Theological Seminary in Educational Leadership and is in the

process of writing his dissertation, which will be submitted in 2012. Registration for the Diocesan School’s fall semester is available on the registration page at, or through the school’s website,, and continues through Aug. 31. Classes, which begin Sept. 10, are held on alternate Saturdays at St. Mark’s School, Ft. Lauderdale. The cost per course is $125 for eight class sessions. The Diocesan School was founded to reflect the Episcopal Church’s focus on “mutual ministry” as the responsibility of all Christians under the one Baptism each of us shares in Christ. In keeping with this purpose, the School not only provides the academic preparation for persons aspiring to the diaconate, but is placing increasing emphasis on Christian formation and training for the whole range of ministries in the church and in society to which laypersons may be called. Complete curriculum information is on the Diocesan School website. For the first time this fall there will be a limited amount of tuition assistance available specifically for non-ordination students. Contact the Diocesan School Administrator at for information.

Episcopal Church joins “Dream Sabbath” Campaign On July 7 The Episcopal Church announced that it is joining other denominations and faith-based organizations in supporting the DREAM Act, and is asking churches to participate in a Dream Sabbath between Sept. 18 to Oct. 9. DREAM stands for Development, Relief and Education for Alien Minors. The DREAM Act 2011 is bipartisan legislation that would grant legalized status to undocumented young people with good moral character who have lived in the U.S. for at least five years and graduated from high school. Permanent resident status would be available upon completion of two years of higher education or military service. The Dream Sabbath Campaign is an interreligious effort, coordinated by the Interfaith Immigration Coalition, to enlist churches to dedicate a Sabbath for dialogue on the Dream Act. According to the National Immigration Law Center, approximately 65,000 undocumented students graduate from U.S. high schools each year. In December 2010, the U.S. House of Representatives passed a version of the DREAM Act, but it died

before it reached the U.S. Senate floor. The current bill was introduced in the Senate on May 11 by Durbin and Senator Harry Reid (D-Nevada), and in the House by Representatives Howard Berman (DCalifornia), Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-Florida), and Lucille Roybal-Allard (D-California). The earliest version of the DREAM Act was introduced in the U.S. Senate in 2001. “The Episcopal Church supports the DREAM Act through the approval of General Convention 2009 Resolution B006,” noted Alex Baumgarten, Episcopal Church Director of Government Relations and International Policy Analyst. “The DREAM Act would help thousands of youth who came to our country as undocumented to receive legal status, thereby granting untold opportunities on their way to becoming United States citizens.” For additional information contact Ana White, the Episcopal Church’s immigration and refugee policy analyst,, or go to and click on the link for Dream Sabbath. ■

Frade, Cutié to lead Holy Land pilgrimage in early 2012 Fr. Albert Cutié and his wife, Ruhama, will join Bishop Leo Frade and his wife, Diana, in leading a Holy Land pilgrimage, Jan. 30-Feb. 11, 2012. The pilgrimage will include visits to such New Testament sites as Nazareth, the Sea of Galilee, Capernaum, Cana and Emmaus, as well as Jericho, Qumran and Megiddo. Pilgrims will spend five days in and around Jerusalem, and will worship at St. George’s Anglican Cathedral on Sunday, Feb. 5. There will also be opportunities to meet with local residents, both Israeli and Palestinian, as well as leaders of the Episcopal Church in the Holy Land. The cost of the trip is $4,225 per person, double occupancy (single occupancy costs an additional $775); this includes a $300 tax-deductible donation to Our Little Roses Ministries. Space is limited, so reservations should be made as soon as possible. A complete itinerary and other details, including a reservation form, are posted at Reservations may also be made through Globe Travel, 305-823-3939. ■



Coalition of Episcopal Latinos will meet Sept. 8-11 at Duncan Center The Coalición de Episcopales Latinos — Coalition of Episcopal Latinos (CEL) — will hold its second annual conference Sept. 8-11 at the Duncan Center. Bishop Leo Frade and Hispanic leaders from Southeast Florida were among those who participated in the Coalition’s inaugural meeting last September in Scottsdale, Ariz. Frade, who is a member of the CEL board, invited the group to hold its second gathering in our diocese. The conference will begin with registration at 3 p.m. on Thursday, Sept. 8. The opening speaker that evening will be Canon Anthony Guillen, Episcopal Church missioner for Latino/Hispanic Ministry. Friday’s keynote speaker will be Fr. Albert Cutié, priest-in-charge of Church of the Resurrection, Biscayne Park, whose topic is “The Latino Gospel in the Episcopal Church.” Workshops topics include justice and immigration, Anglican identity, women’s leadership and local CEL groups. There will be separate workshops for youth, as well as workshops for clergy with representatives of the Church Pension Group. Friday’s session will end with dinner and a “fiesta Cubana,” with music and dancing. Saturday’s agenda will include a business session, Eucharist, an afternoon of tours and free time, and in the evening a time to share the conference experience. The conference ends with breakfast on Sunday. The cost is $300 per person, double occupancy, and $400 for a single room. There is a small amount of scholarship funding available for the conference. For more information contact Canon Carmen Guerrero, CEL president, at or ■

SD Deanery and Vitas Hospice to offer End of Life Care Conference, Sept. 17 When faced with a terminal diagnosis, many patients and their families look to clergy and other faith leaders for guidance in dealing with the emotional and spiritual stresses of the situation. Yet many clergy and lay leaders feel they are unprepared to minister to the terminally ill and their families. The South Dade Deanery and Vitas Hospice Care will offer a conference on Sept. 17 at St. Thomas, Coral Gables, that will provide information and training for clergy, lay leaders and health professionals in end of life ministry, as well as ways to care for their own emotional and spiritual needs as caregivers. The 8:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m. conference will include six presentations: Elements of End of Life Care; Advance Care Planning; Cultural Considerations in End of Life Care; Common Psychological Issues; Spirituality in End of Life Care; and Grief, Bereavement and Self Care. A $10 registration fee will be charged to help cover printed materials, lunch and refreshments. Attendance is limited to 100 people. Diocesan clergy can receive six continuing education hours for attending the conference, and 4-6 CEUs will be offered by Vitas Hospice for nurses and social workers. Additonal information and a registration form are linked to the announcement of this event in Grapevine on the diocesan website,, or you may contact the diocesan Canon for Health, the Rev. Canon Carlos Sandoval, M.D., at ■


The Net, August 2011


Task force report

Photo by Bill Monk/Province IV

Archdeacon Bryan Hobbs presents the report of the Congregational Development and Evangelism Task Force at the Province IV Synod.At front table, second from right, is Task Force Chair Karen Philips Smith.

Synod participants learn about Province IV ministries, prepare for GC 2012 By Canon Richard E. Miller About 200 deputies, delegates, friends and guests gathered June 8-10 at Kanuga Conference Center in Hendersonville, NC, for the 2011 Province IV Convocational Synod. This was my first time presiding over a synod since being elected province president in 2009. The purpose of the synod was to provide the province’s deputies and other leaders with updates on the work of the province a year before the 77th General Convention in 2012 The two-and-a-half-day program highlighted the ongoing ministries of some 14 funded provincial networks, ranging from the youth, young adults and companion dioceses, to disaster preparedness, Hispanic ministries and anti-racism. This was the first opportunity for participants to hear of the newest ministry effort in Province IV: Young Adult Ministries. The newly formed Province IV Young Adult Network is the only such network in The Episcopal Church. (See p. 3 for stories on Young Adult Ministries in the Diocese of Southeast Florida.) Synod delegates also heard reports on immigration issues, the Denominational Health Plan, Congregational Development strategies and the pros and cons of the proposed Anglican Covenant. One of our deputies, Tom O’Brien, took part in the forum on the Covenant, presenting arguments against it. Archdeacon Bryan Hobbs presented a report from the Congregational Development and Evangelism Task Force, which I appointed. Another of our deputies, Karen Philips Smith, chaired the task force. Another presenter from Southeast Florida was Randy McGrorty of Catholic Charities Legal Services in Miami, who frequently works with our diocesan Office of Immigration and Social Justice on immigration issues. June 6-8, just prior to the synod, the Province IV Episcopal Church Women and Altar Guild members also held their annual meeting at Kanuga. As

province president, I had an opportunity to address the women in session, as well as to hold individual conversations with them during meals Monday through Wednesday noon and during their receptions. I found these encounters useful and meaningful. Feedback from those attending the synod was very positive and encouraging. Many said they appreciated the chance to hear about work of Province IV Networks and the ministry opportunities available at the provincial level. They also welcomed the sense of community formed through the worship and social time together. The next synod will be held June 4-8, 2012, one month before the 77th General Convention. Canon Richard E. Miller, a member of Holy Family, Miami Gardens, is president of Province IV secretary of Diocesan Convention, treasurer of the Union of Black Episcopalians, a member of the Nehemiah Steering Committee and an eight-time deputy to General Convention.

What’s Province IV? The Episcopal Church is made up of nine provinces; within the United States, these reflect geographic regions, just as our deaneries are groupings of congregations in different areas of the diocese. Province IV, also known as the Province of Sewanee, is the largest of the provinces. Twenty dioceses in nine Southeastern states comprise Province IV, which is named for our seminary, the School of Theology of the University of the South, located in Sewanee, Tenn. Included in the province are dioceses located in Alabama, Georgia, Florida, Kentucky, North Carolina, Mississippi, South Carolina, Tennessee, and part of Louisiana. For more information on what’s happening in our province, go to ■


THE The Net, August 2011



Honoring the dead

Both the cross and the Star of David (left, closer to the wall) rise over a cemetery in Theresienstadt, Czech Republic, where both Jews and Christian political prisoners died in brutal conditions in a concentration camp.

Photo by Thomas O’Brien

Interfaith journey explores Jewish-Christian history By Canon Thomas O’Brien During the last half of June, Rabbi Howard Shapiro and I were privileged to lead an Interfaith Tour of Central Europe for 33 Christians and Jews. Howard is Rabbi Emeritus of Temple Israel in West Palm Beach. For the last three years he and I have engaged in lively dialogues about Judaism and Christianity for the more than 500 seniors who attend our classes at Florida Atlantic University’s Lifelong Learning Programs in Jupiter and Boca Raton. The focus of this trip was to explore the often difficult relationships between Christianity and Judaism in Central Europe from the Middle Ages to the present. Starting in Budapest, we visited the largest synagogue in Europe, the Jewish Quarter, St. Stephen’s Basilica and discussed the ways the architecture of sacred spaces affects and reinforces beliefs. We were aboard the luxurious MS Amadolce for eight days, sailing on the (nearly) Blue Danube, visiting and touring Bratislava, Vienna, Salzburg, other medieval towns. We ended our cruise in Nuremberg, and our tour concluded with two days in the magnificent city of Prague. There were some surprises. We encountered a parade in Durnstein celebrating the Feast of Corpus

Tom Ehrich to speak at Clergy Conference The speaker for this year’s diocesan Clergy Conference, scheduled for Sept. 6-8 at the Duncan Center, is writer and church consultant Tom Ehrich, whose topic will be “Ministry in the 21st Century: Outside the Walls.” An Episcopal priest, Ehrich served congregations in Indiana, Missouri, North Carolina and New York before moving into fulltime ministry as a writer and consultant with judicatories, congregations and church leaders around the country. His recent work focuses on "turnaround strategies" for mainline churches, with special emphasis on membership development, leadership development, leveraging technology, and diversifying beyond Sunday worship. Through his company, Morning Walk Media, Ehrich publishes three church-development newslet-

Christi (a national holiday in Austria). The cobblestone streets of this little town were strewn with fresh-mowed grass, and the parade featured an “oompah” marching band and the Eucharist displayed in a monstrance. All the residents of the town were out parading in costume. We visited Jewish Quarters in Vienna and in other cities, monasteries, synagogues, palaces, cathedrals and medieval walled cities. Onboard the ship, we worshiped together in a Shabbat Service on Friday and a Christian Service on Sunday. (My wife, Alison, and I also worshiped on a Sunday with the small Anglican community in Budapest.) Howard and I gave lectures and led discussions on the Crusades and their impact on Jews in Central Europe. We all learned from the reactions of each member of the group to coming to Austria, Germany and the Czech Republic (most for the first time) where so many Jews were killed by Nazis who were assisted actively and passively by others; the differences among religious orders (we saw lots of monasteries, including some that were really palaces); and the challenges facing the lawyers who prosecuted the Nuremberg Trials. On the day before our trip ended, we visited the concentration camp at Theresienstadt outside of Prague. Although Theresienstadt was not a death

camp as such, nearly half of the persons sent there (Jews and political prisoners) died from the deplorable conditions. Unknown until the 1980s, a tiny secret synagogue was under one of the buildings in the town during WWII. The walls of the synagogue were inscribed with phrases from the Book of Lamentations. Rabbi Shapiro led us in the Mourner’s Kaddish. There wasn’t a dry eye, and we lit candles in memory of the millions who lost their lives in the unspeakable horrors of the Holocaust. Howard and I strongly believe that as persons of different faith traditions better understand their own faiths and the faith traditions of others, they will be deepened in their spirituality and their own faith. In our courses and in conducting Interfaith Trips, we consistently find that Jews learn more about both Judaism and Christianity, and Christians have the same experience. Howard and I feel very blessed to be able to share our spirituality, insights, knowledge of theology and scripture – and our friendship – with others. ■

ters, daily writings on faith and ethics, and two nationally syndicated newspaper columns. Registration and a complete conference agenda are now available on the diocesan website,; click on “registration” for the form and information. To subscribe to any of Ehrich’s newsletters or daily writings, go to■

for programs that address a significant basic human need--feeding, clothing, shelter and healthcare--for youth and elderly populations in their immediate communities. Special consideration will be given to new youth and elderly programs that work in partnership with other churches and/or community organizations. The addition of a new program component to an existing EC-funded program that moves services from transactional support to transformational support for clients is also welcome. Service to families and homeless populations will be considered. Application must be made by the EC Messengers on behalf of their respective congregations; the applications deadline is Friday, Sept. 23. Applicants must have attended at least one of Episcopal Charities Outreach University workshops. For more information visit ■

ECSEFL offers outreach grants through EC Messengers Episcopal Charities has announced a $20,000 fund to support outreach work initiated by the leadership of its EC Messengers in their respective congregations. Five grants of up to $4,000 each will be available

Thomas O’Brien, a member of Bethesda-by-theSea, Palm Beach, is an honorary canon of Trinity Cathedral, a diocesan deputy to General Convention and chair of the Diocesan School Board.




The Net, August 2011


Workshop highlights transformative ministries By Mary W. Cox, editor The final session of Episcopal Charities’ “Outreach University” workshops focused on transformative ministries. Episcopal Charities messengers (parish representatives) and outreach ministry leaders came to St. Mark the Evangelist, Ft. Lauderdale, on July 23 to learn how three varied ministries are “Moving from Transactional to Transformational Programming.” Fr. Horace Ward and Janice Lovett from Holy Family, Miami Gardens, gave a presentation on the parish’s Second Chance Ministry, a partnership with schools, students and families in the community. Ward said the ministry grew out of the Nehemiah Process, as the parish began to feel called to reach out to the children and families in Miami Gardens. “The children in our schools are in serious, serious trouble,” he said, citing poor test scores and graduation rates and incidents of violence. “This is our mission — to transform these lives.” The first event sponsored by Second Chance was a distribution of backpacks at the beginning of the 2010 school year. The event was scheduled to take place in the parish hall, but due to a large funeral that day, the hall wasn’t available. The parish set up a tent on the grounds and handed out backpacks filled with school supplies to 250 children and families, most of whom were coming to the church for the first time. The ministry continued through the year with a tutoring program for Norland Senior High students, staffed by volunteers who are all certified teachers. That program is planned to continue this fall, with in-school tutoring, an expanded computer lab at the church and a curriculum focused on skills needed for success on the FCAT. This summer Second Chance has offered a threeweek program for 30 children ages five to 14. There was tutoring, focused on each child’s strengths and weaknesses, but there were also cultural activities, field trips and “just plain fun.” Ward said he was happy to see that the summer program had multigenerational support from the parish, with volunteers of all ages, and added that he “heard a greater sense of excitement and commitment to the Miami Gardens community.”

“What we are doing is… the witness of presence.” When Ward was asked if the summer curriculum included any religious instruction, his answer was a firm, “No.” The mission of Second Chance is “life transformation through the Gospel of Jesus Christ,” he said, but by doing the Gospel, not preaching it. The second presenter was Kokie Dinnan, director of Family Promise of South Palm Beach County, a branch of a nationwide ministry that brings together faith communities to house and feed families that are “situationally homeless” and to help them become sustainably independent. The program began in Palm Beach County in 2008 with eight congregations; 24 are now involved, either as locations where families can be housed, or by providing volunteers and other support—or both. Family Promises serves a maximum of four families (no more than 14 people) at a time, providing housing and meals at churches and temples, as well as such services as assistance with job searches and legal matters, help with financial planning and budgeting, play therapy for children and parenting skills training for parents. The average stay for a family is three to four months. Last year Family Promise began a follow-up mentoring program for families that have “graduated.” This keeps them connected, Dinnan said, and provides an ongoing support system. Like Ward, she said that this ministry does not include proselytizing or preaching. “We don’t have to speak it,” she said. “We’re acting God’s love in the world.” “We get more than we give,” she added, saying that volunteers and client families form close and lasting relationships. “The families inspire me.”

Fr. Sherod Mallow, rector of All Saints, Ft. Lauderdale, spoke about Centro Hispano de Todos los Santos, part of the New River Regional Ministry, which also includes All Saints and St. Ambrose. Unlike Second Chance and Family Promise, the Centro began with worship services. Mallow said that his wife, the Rev. Rosa Lindhal-Mallow “felt called out into the Hispanic community that had no interface with the Episcopal Church,” and in 2005 started holding “Mass in the Grass” in a local park. The presence of drug dealers and prostitution quickly forced Lindahl-Mallow and her fledgling Hispanic congregation to look for a new venue, and All Saints parishioners donated $50,000 to rent a storefront. The Centro has moved four or five times, but last year found a more permanent home at St. Ambrose, when that congregation became part of the New River Regional Ministry. The Centro ministers to “first-wave immigrants with varying degrees of documentation,” Mallow said, helping them to deal with such issues as domestic abuse, rent, documentation and citizenship, and inability to access the “Anglo” social service system. A primary part of the ministry is a reading program, one day a week during the school year and four days a week during the summer, with volunteer tutors who are teachers or retired teachers. And there is still worship — Lindahl-Mallow celebrates Mass in Spanish on Sundays at noon at St. Ambrose. “What we are doing is…the witness of presence,” Mallow says. “God will do the work if we put ourselves in the space.” Money is always a challenge, he said. The Episcopal Church is held back by a “budget-based philosophy… that makes the budget the limit of God’s grace.” The church needs to put “what we’re called to do” first, he said; begin doing the ministry and then find ways to continue to fund it. The Centro is now a separate 501-3C corporation and is actively seeking grants. “We don’t know what we’re doing,” he laughed. “We make it up every day. “All of this has changed All Saints,” he added. Transformative ministry works both ways. ■

Two SE Florida congregations to be part of “missio:engage” Two Southeast Florida congregations, St. Margaret’s and San Francisco de Asis, Miami Lakes, and St. George’s, Riviera Beach, have accepted an invitation to be part of a small group of congregations from around the Episcopal Church that are beginning a new two-year “ministry adventure” called “missio:engage.” Developed by Fr. Tom Brackett, the Episcopal Church’s missioner for Church Planting and Ministry Redevelopment, missio:engage is described as a partnership with the goal of “assist[ing] communities of faith in the process of re-rooting their ministries in the communities they are called to serve.” The new venture is and led by Brackett and Canon Anthony Guillen, missioner for Latino/Hispanic Ministry. The first group of congregations invited to participate is multicultural, but Brackett said, “Anyone is welcome to join…. Our goal is that every ministry involved in this will become intercultural, because that’s what our society is.” According to Brackett, this partnership is designed

to become an “intentional” Community of Practice that learns publicly from what works in renewing congregations, as well as what doesn’t.” Each participating congregation will enter into a covenant with each other, with its vestry, with its rector/priest in charge and with Brackett to learn together and practice what has been proven to work. Each congregation will commit to sharing its learnings and discoveries with the church at large through a dedicated website. Each congregation has been asked to select a team of five, led by a layperson, to be a core group dedicated to this ministry alone. This group of leaders, along with the rector/priest in charge, is beginning an intensive two-month training, much of it through video or web conference. Over the next two years the group will learn how to offer radical welcome to newcomers in their community, move visitors from being newcomers to fully-formed leaders, reconnect with the realities

emerging in the communities they are called to serve and offer relevant outreach that offers God’s grace in ways meaningful to their communities. By the end of the two-year period, each of the members of the group is expected to have identified, trained and nurtured her/his replacement. Participating congregations will work toward these measurable outcomes: transformed and outwardly-turned faith community; multiple streams of newcomers and visitors from the surrounding communities; a developed and refined process of incorporation leading to a strengths-based approach to ministry formation for all; core leadership development on multiple levels; the critical mass necessary to engage in sustainable missional ministries; and a realtime, on the ground reconnection (or “re-rooting”) in the ministry context. ■ For more information contact Brackett at




The Net, August 2011

Parishes in Progress

Eagle project ■ Fr. Sam Thomas, priest-in-charge of St. Martin’s, Clewiston, has been appointed Emergency Coordinator for ARES/RACES (Amateur Radio Emergency Services/Radio Amateur Civil Emergency Services) in Hendry County. He meets quarterly with the Emergency Services Council for the county, has helped to obtain equipment for the new Emergency Operations Center for the county, and also seeks to recruit volunteer “ham” operators for communications during a hurricane or other disaster. St. Martin’s recently received a donation of hurricane shutters for all of its buildings, including the rectory, and has a preparedness committee; so the church is ready for emergencies, too. “Hams” can contact Thomas at W3ALE. ■ St. Christopher’s, West Palm Beach, is planning an Oktoberfest on Oct. 8 with food, clowns, face-painting and family fun, in addition to craft displays for early Christmas shopping. ■ On Aug. 28 St. Andrew’s, Lake Worth, will offer “Imagining Argentina,” an evening of Argentine wines and cuisine — with, of course, a tango performance. The cost is $25 per person. For information and tickets call 561-582-6609. ■ Fr. Alberto Cutié will be at Saint Benedict’s, Plantation, on Wednesday, Sept. 14 to celebrate Mass at 7 p.m. and to speak afterward on his book, Dilemma. There will be copies of the book available for sale and signing. Admission is free and open to the public. ■ Every Wednesday from 9 a.m. to noon, St. Andrew’s, Hollywood, now offers a service of Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament. Eucharistic adoration is the devotional practice in which worshipers contemplate the Blessed Sacrament and worship the presence of Jesus Christ in the consecrated host. ■ The Fifth Annual “Not So Square Dance” will be held at All Soul’s, Miami Beach, on Saturday, Sept. 24, at 7 p.m. There will be a professional caller and a country western dinner. Western dress is encouraged. This event, formerly held at St. Stephen’s, Coconut Grove, is a benefit for the new AIDS Healing Ministry at All Soul’s, begun with a grant from Episcopal Charities; the event has been moved from St. Stephen’s to give a boost to this new ministry on the beach. The cost is $25 per person, $40 per couple, and there’s free parking. For additional information contact Deacon Charles Humphries, ■ On Sunday, July 31, Trinity Cathedral, Miami, gave a farewell blessing to two of its members who are beginning seminary studies, Jean Beniste, who’s attending Virginia Theological Seminary, and Lorenzo Lebrija, who will study at General Seminary in New York. The cathedral also had to say goodbye to Jean’s wife, Monica, who has been Trinity’s administrator, and to the couple’s two young daughters, Annelise and Solange, who have had as many honorary godparents as there are cathedral parishioners. ■ Aug. 11-14, Church of the Ascension, Miami, held a Church Choir Workshop, led by Marques L. A. Garrett, Director of Choral Activities, Cheyney University, Cheyney, Penn. The workshop focused on basic choral singing techniques, using Afro-American sacred music that embraces all genres relative to the black worship experience (hymns, anthems, gospel and Negro spirituals), and concluded with a concert on Sunday afternoon, featuring a choir made up of conference participants. ■ On Sunday, July 24, St. Philip’s, Coral Gables, held its third annual “Christmas in July Celebration” to commemorate being half way through the year from one Christmas to the next. Parishioners put up a Christmas tree and brought gifts of diapers and toiletries for use by the residents of the New Life Family Center, which is one of the parish’s outreach ministries. ■ This summer Fr. Frank Corbishley, priest-in-charge of Chapel of the Venerable Bede, Coral Gables, and Episcopal campus chaplain at the University of Miami, has been meeting weekly for informal conversation with Brazilian, Chinese, and Arab students in the university’s Intensive English Program to help them develop their comprehension and speaking skills of English as a foreign language. ■ On Aug. 13, from 1-9 p.m., St. Thomas, Coral Gables, is inviting diocesan middle school and high school youth — whether they’ve attended a youth conference at Kanuga Conference Center or not — to sample a little of Kanuga at “Kanugacita.” The event offers youth a chance to sing, dance, play, share their talents in a “Coffee House” and worship together “Kanuga style.” ■ On June 5 the Sunday School children at St. Paul’s, Key West, set up a lemonade stand and raised $84 for tornado victims in Missouri. Coincidentally, one of their customers was a visitor from Joplin, Mo. The Net, August 2011

Beard going...

Celebrating the spirit


Photo by Rene Loredo

Fr. Rafael Garcia leads prayers in front of Holy Comforter, Miami, as the congregation prepares to celebrate Pentecost by releasing red balloons.

Photo by Ann Harrington

Brady Harrington (left) gives instructions to his brother Cory as they work on Brady’s Eagle Scout project: renovating the gazebo at All Angels, Miami Springs. The Scout wants to make the gazebo a place where parishioners and neighbors can come for quiet contemplation, as well as a site for weddings or baptisms. The congregation is helping with financial and in-kind donations--and additional willing hands.

Talent Show

Stocking shelves


Youth from St. Mary Magdalene, Coral Springs, responded to a June request for volunteer help at St. Laurence Chapel. Stocking shelves in the food pantry are (left to right) Brooks Reed, Sophie Pacelko, Sophie Pacelko and Sarah Glynn. Photo by Emilie Adams


Photo by Mireya Medina

Students in the My Backyard program at St. Margaret’s and San Francisco de Asis, Miami Lakes, dance in a talent show that was part of the festivities on the final day of summer camp on July 22. As the school year begins, the My Backyard after-school program is expanding to include grades 2-8. For information go to

Children in Vacation Bible School at St. George’s, Riviera Beach, model their versions of Joseph’s “coat of many colors.” Volunteers from Bethesda-by-the-Sea, Palm Beach, made the familiar Old Testament stories of Noah, Joseph, Moses and Jonah handson fun for the children. (See p. 16 for more on the ministries at St. George’s.)

Photo by Laura Warner

Photos by Pat Kharimanian

Fr. Frisby Hendricks, rector of All Saints’, Jensen Beach, goes (in stages) from hirsute to clean-shaven in just over a week. Hendricks returned from vacation with a beard and challenged his congregation to vote—with donations for Habitat for Humanity—on whether he should keep it or shave it. The vote was two-to-one for shaving, so he did, but teased everyone by keeping the mustache for a few days before going back to his familiar look. The beard’s departure raised $130 for Habitat.



THE The Net, August 2011


From Our Bishop

Freedom Fries Freedom Fries — do you remember them? It was only eight years ago when two “patriotic” representatives from Ohio and North Carolina declared that all references to the French fries and French toast on the menus of the restaurants and snack bars run by the House of Representatives would remove any reference to the French. This action by Congressman Robert W. Ney (R-Ohio), who was in charge of overseeing restaurant operations for the chamber, and Robert B. Jones (R-North Carolina), never came up for a vote in Congress, but received plenty of publicity. It was intended to express displeasure with France’s “continued refusal to stand with the U.S. allies” — in other words, for refusing to go to war against Iraq due to doubts about the validity of claims of weapons of mass destruction. The French Embassy in Washington, D.C, made no comment beyond pointing out that what we call “French fries” come from Belgium. Nathalie Loisau, an embassy spokeswoman said: “We are at a very serious moment dealing with very serious issues, and we are not focusing on the name you give to potatoes.” As we come to the end of a decade since September 11, 2001, I want to remind everyone our Diocese of Southeast Florida to take a moment to consider first the sacrifice of our Armed Forces around the world in responding to the treachery of the fanatical attack on the Twin Towers and the Pentagon. It didn’t take long to realize that Osama Bin Laden and the Taliban were in cahoots with each other in Afghanistan, so we proceeded to respond to their destructive challenge. Unfortunately for us, we lost our focus and decided to look elsewhere for nonexistent weapons of mass destruction in Iraq, and before we knew it we were involved in war there, weakening our efforts in Afghanistan. The end result we now know: There were no weapons of mass destruction, and the cost of our Iraq intervention was thousands of lives lost, as well as the expansion of the influence of Iran in that area, to the detriment of our

Official publication of the Episcopal Diocese of Southeast Florida The Rt. Rev. Leo Frade, Bishop The Rt. Rev. Calvin O. Schofield, Jr. S.T.D., Retired Bishop The Rt. Rev. John L. Said Retired Bishop Suffragan Kathryn Blanton Convener of Communications Ministry Mary W. Cox Editor Catherine Kohn/PSPress Layout Editor

John T. Cox Proofreader

security and of all the moderate regimes of the Middle East. In May 2005 Rep. Jones, having arrived at the belief that the United States went to war “with no justification,” said of the “Freedom Fries” episode, “I wish it had never happened.” By July 2006, the House of Representatives had quietly changed the name of the two foods in all of its restaurants back to “French fries” and “French toast.” Unfortunately the backlash of hate after September 11, 2001, went much further than changing the names of a couple of our favorite foods. There were victims who didn’t die due to the hatred of the terrorists, but due to the hatred of so-called “patriotic Americans.” No attention, no funding and no public support has been given to these victims, who were killed because they were either Arab or Muslim or simply looked like “Middle Eastern types.“ One of them was Baldir Singh Soldin, a Sikh from India who was gunned down on Sept. 15, 2001, in Mesa, Ariz. — the same state that is passing anti-immigrant laws that could persecute minorities. The Arizona killer of the “turban-wearing Sikh” killed him outside his gas station. His killer spent hours before the murder in a bar, bragging of his intention to “kill the ragheads” responsible for September 11, 2001. Waqar Hasan of Dallas, Texas, was also killed the same day. He was a 46 year old from Pakistan, murdered in the convenience store he owned by a fellow Texan named Mark Stroman. Stroman was also convicted of murdering another “Arab-looking” person in nearby Mesquite, Texas, and admitted to authorities that he had injured a third victim, a Bangladeshi, between the two murders. He bragged that, “I did what every American wanted to do after September 11, but didn’t have the nerve.” Stroman was executed last month for the murders. It is interesting to note that even on the day of the execution the only surviving victim, Rais Bhuiyan, who was blinded in one eye by Stroman’s attack on him, continued to plead for his attacker’s life to be spared, saying that his Muslim faith required him to forgive. Then we have Adel Karas, 48, a grocer from Egypt who happened to be a Coptic Christian, killed on September 15 in San Gabriel, California. I could go on and on with these sad and violent examples of our hate and overreaction against those

Letters to the Editor The Net welcomes letters to the editor. All letters must include the name, address, phone number, and if available, email address, of the writer. Parish affiliation is also requested, when applicable. The Net reserves the right to refuse publication, and to edit letters for length, spelling and grammar.

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who are our neighbors — often our fellow citizens of this country — but simply don’t look exactly like us. Suffice it to say that according to the Human Rights Watch, assault and vandalism against Arab Muslim and Christian Americans have increased by 1,700 percent in the past ten years. How will you respond as we approach the tenth anniversary of that fateful and murderous day, September 11, 2001? I call you first of all to pray for our troops around the world who risk and sacrifice to defend our freedom against those who would destroy us. But I also call on you to remember that our freedom is equally threatened when we forget that this nation was founded with the astonishing provision that “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof” — that from the beginning we intended to be different from regimes past and present that dictate to their citizens what to believe and how to pray. Perhaps it seems unfair to us that Muslims can have in this country the freedom to practice their faith that we, as Christians, would not be allowed in Muslim countries like Saudi Arabia or the newly formed nation of North Sudan; but we are called as Americans to preserve our commitment to a freedom that includes the right to worship and pray to God as we understand the Deity to be, to practice any religion — or none. We dishonor both this commitment to liberty and our call as Christians to love our neighbor when we fan the flames of hatred and fear with asinine ideas like banning mosques from our communities, or outlawing the practice of the Muslim code of Sharia law. As a Christian I rejoice to proclaim the Good News that our Lord Christ loves and cares for all humanity, and that he will indeed draw the whole world to himself. But as an American I am also proud to say that America belongs to all who swear allegiance “to the flag of the United States of America and to the Republic for which it stands, one Nation under God Indivisible with Liberty and Justice for all.” This unity, my dearly beloved — this welcome for all who love liberty — is our weapon of mass destruction against all hatred and dictatorships that may threaten our country and “this fragile earth, our island home.” +Leo Frade

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Points of View



The Net, August 2011


Why Alberto Cutié matters — “Father Oprah” and the Good News By Miguel Angel Escobar Last month Fr. Albert Cutié, priest-in-charge of Church of the Resurrection, Biscayne Park, debuted a new English-language talk show on Fox-owned television stations in several markets around the country, a “sneak peek” for a daily program projected to be available nationwide in September 2012. This reflection on the impact of Cutié’s TV ministry was posted on Episcopal Church Foundation Vital Practices on July 12, and is reprinted here by permission. Fr. Alberto Cutié’s new daytime talk show premiered yesterday. Did you watch? The premiere of “Father Albert” generated a bit of conversation on the Episcopal Café’s Facebook page with comments ranging from hopefulness to curiosity to disdain. “And we should care...why?” wrote one Episcopal priest. I briefly met Fr. Cutié two years ago and I must confess that I did so with that last question very much in mind. First off, I’m not a big television watcher, much less a fan of daytime television. I’d heard of Father Oprah, had seen his books in Barnes and Noble, but didn’t connect with the idea of a celibate priest dispensing relationship advice. Secondly, Fr. Cutié’s entry into the Episcopal Church came at a particularly difficult time in my life. Having just been rejected from the ordination process in the Diocese of New York, I was hurt by how swiftly Fr. Cutié became an Episcopal priest in the Diocese of Southeast Florida. I recall joking that perhaps things would have turned out differently for me had I been a television star, better looking, with millions of fans. A year or so later my attitude has changed. I’m a fan and I strongly believe we should care. Here’s why: The face of the Episcopal Church is rapidly changing. Latinos presently constitute one of — if not the — fastest growing segments of the Episcopal Church. This parallels broader shifts in U.S. demographics. As noted in “A (Uni)Vision for Life After A Mass Market,” demographers at the Census Bureau predict that by the year 2042 racial and ethnic minorities will make up more than half of the U.S. population, with more than 30 percent considering themselves Hispanic. In this context, Alberto Cutié’s story — that of a Latino struggling to live within the confines of the Roman Catholic Church and finding a new life and home in the Episcopal Church — is a powerful one that may resonate with millions of people. This was very apparent in a Spanish-language radio interview he gave with another Episcopal priest, the


Carson’s Silent Spring a “seriously uninformed” example The Rev. Canon William “Chip” Stokes (The Net, June 2011) states that “voices like that of Rachel Carson in Silent Spring…tell the truth in the face of power”…His use of Silent Spring as truth and an avatar of environmental wisdom is ludicrous, flawed, seriously uninformed and bottom line ignorant. Carson’s book has been scientifically shown to be without foundation and is no more than pseudo science at best. The book is now held in

Photo by David Steele/ Debmar-Mercury

On his new talk show “Father Albert” engages in a passionate discussion with a group of mothers about the verdict in the Casey Anthony case.

Rev. Anna Lange-Soto. In it, he speaks about many of the people he encountered as a Roman Catholic priest: women who stayed within abusive relationships rather than getting divorced; divorced individuals denied communion; couples struggling with the church’s teaching on contraceptives, etc. He goes on to say that he’s a member of the Episcopal Church because we do not treat communion “like a prize” but as the body of Christ offered to all. While some may cringe over the scandalous elements of Alberto Cutié’s personal story, I happen to hear in it an echo of the scandalous nature of love. Love happens, we as a Church seem to be saying, and Cutié is skillfully connecting his own story to the experiences of those whose love of God and one another is regularly denigrated: women who are being called into the priesthood and LGBT people who wish to marry. In this same radio interview, a caller laments the Roman Catholic’s view of LGBT people and asks what the Episcopal Church’s position on this matter is. The precision of [Cutié’s] response is remarkable. He first lays out the Episcopal Church’s ability to hold differing viewpoints on this matter in tension and then articulates his own belief that we should be fighting for LGBT equality. He provides a biblical

very low regard by serious scientists. Carson’s chief villain is the pesticide DDT. During WWII, DDT was used in stopping a major epidemic in Naples, Italy, in its tracks. Didn’t cause harmful effects to anyone. The World Health Organization credits DDT with saving 50 to 100 million lives by preventing malaria. Carson, trying to spotlight harm (in her mind) to wildlife, painted emotional unscientific scenarios in which all the birds had been poisoned by DDT, resulting in “silent spring in which no birds sing.” Carson’s disciples have managed to persuade many poor countries to stop using DDT against mosquitoes. The result, millions of people sick and dying each year from malaria [and] between

basis, noting how Paul’s description of pederasty differs from relationships between consenting adults, talks about the Episcopal Church’s welcome to all, and concludes with a particular call to Latino fathers to love their LGBT children. It’s in moments like these that Fr. Cutié’s skill as communicator comes through — honed, undoubtedly, from his years as a TV personality. My sincere hope is that we as a Church will be able to find a way to welcome and use these many gifts to continue to proclaim this Good News. Why should we care about Alberto Cutié? As an Episcopalian, I care because he is a member of my Church, because his personal journey led him to this spiritual home, because I hear aspects of my own story in that journey, and because he’s a skillful communicator of what has brought me and so many others into the Episcopal Church. And while I might never be the biggest fan of his talk show (though who knows?), I am a fan of his ability to meld the unlikely worlds of a daytime talk show and genuine faith. ■ Miguel Angel Escobar is associate program director for leadership and training at the Episcopal Church Foundation.

300 and 500 million infected annually, killing about 2.7 million. DDT activists have now had to step back. However, after 40+ years and tens of billions of dollars wasted phasing out DDT without any measurable benefits, the consequences of this book (and ignorance) are still causing misery and killing hundreds of thousands each year… The misuse of errant writing, as is the misuse of Scripture, to make a point is, at least for me, unacceptable. — Robert P. Gallaher, Jr., North Miami Beach (Note: Mr. Gallaher’s letter included a 1992 article by entomologist J. Gordon Edwards that is severely critical of Silent Spring.)




The Net, August 2011

n less than two weeks in June the diocese gained three new priests and two new deacons. The “ordination marathon” began with the ordination to the priesthood of Charles Cannon on June 19 at St. James the Fisherman, Islamorada, where he began his ministry as rector one week earlier. On June 21 Matthew Koslowski was ordained to the priesthood at St. Mary’s, Stuart, where he is serving as assistant rector. The following evening, June 22, two deacons, Susan Beebe and Todd Hoover, were ordained at All Saints, Ft. Lauderdale. Beebe is assisting at St. Gregory’s, Boca Raton, and Hoover at St. Mary Magdalene, Coral Springs. William Walker, who is now assisting priest at St. Luke the Physician, Miami, was ordained to the priesthood on June 24 at St. Thomas, Coral Gables. On June 29 Charles Browning was ordained to the priesthood at Holy Trinity, West Palm Beach, where he serves as associate priest.

Our Diocese

Ordination season: 11 days, three priests, two deacons


Photo by Steve Vinik

Bishop Leo Frade presents Deacons Todd Hoover and Susan Beebe to the congregation at All Saints, Ft. Lauderdale. At left, serving as bishop’s chaplain, is Chuck Ebert.

Photo by Charles Lippincott

Fr. Matthew Kozlowski’s wife, Danielle, vests him with his stole.

With his daughter, Chelsea, son, Matthew, and father, the Rev. A. Charles Cannon, Jr.,and Bishop Leo Frade sharing the joyful moment, the newly ordained Fr. Charles Cannon greets his congregation. Photo by Jane Ferguson

Photo by Jeff McGregor Photo by Bob McCammon

Fr. William Walker gives his priestly blessing to Bishop Leo Frade, who ordained him minutes before. Fr. Charles Cannon (left) and retired Bishop Calvin O. Schofield, Jr., took part in the service.

Taking part in the ordination service for Fr. Charles Browning (center) were (left to right) Holy Trinity’s verger, Jeff Lewis, Canon Hap Lewis, Bishop Leo Frade and Holy Trinity’s rector, Fr. David Wilt.

Our Diocese



The Net, August 2011


Diocese mourns pastor and spiritual guide Perry Fuller By Mary W. Cox, editor Fr. Perry Fuller was an Episcopal priest for only six-and-a-half years and never served as rector of a parish, but his death on July 7 after a five-month battle with cancer is mourned across the diocese. Born in Scranton, Pa., Aug. 30, 1935, Fuller began his ministry in the Presbyterian Church, where he served for 25 years as a pastor in churches in western New York. In 1984 he received a doctorate in family therapy from Colgate Rochester Divinity School and began a new ministry in private practice, working first with clients with eating disorders and then in inpatient and outpatient treatment of addiction to alcohol and other drugs. In 1996 Fuller and his wife, Pamela, were received into the Episcopal Church. When they retired to Delray Beach three years later, they became members of St. Paul’s, where the rector, Canon William “Chip” Stokes, soon began urging Fuller to consider ordination as an Episcopal priest. At age 68, Fuller was ordained to the diaconate on July 11, 2004, at St. Paul’s, and began yet another new ministry. He was ordained to the priesthood at Grace, West Palm Beach, on Jan. 23, 2005, where he served as deacon and continued to serve briefly as a priest. But at the request of Bishop Leo Frade, he had trained specifically for interim ministry, and in August 2005 he began his first interim in the diocese at St. Matthew the Apostle, Miami.

He subsequently served as interim at Holy Trinity, West Palm Beach; Holy Sacrament, Pembroke Pines; and most recently, from October 2009 till he became ill in February of this year, at Bethesda-by-the-Sea, Palm Beach. He was also known by many diocesan clergy and those in the process toward ordination as a member of the Commission on Ministry and since 2007, director of the Diocesan School for Christian Studies. He led retreats and workshops on Benedictine spirituality and contemplative prayer, and was often sought as a spiritual director. In a message to his congregation announcing Fuller’s death, Fr. Tony Holder, rector of Holy Sacrament, said, “Holy Sacrament will be forever richer because of his influence on our faith community.” On May 15 Fuller, who was then undergoing cancer treatment, was able to return to Bethesda-by-theSea for one last service to conclude his interim ministry there. During the service and at the reception afterward there were many words of thanks from the congregation, and the junior warden presented the Fullers with a print of the church as seen from the rectory. Parishioners had added their signatures and messages to the mat around the print. Fuller is survived by his wife of 50 years, Pam, who continues as administrator of the Diocesan School (see p. 4), two children and four grandchildren. The family suggests that any memorial donations

Photo by Nick Kindred

Fr. Perry Fuller gives his blessing to the congregation of Bethesda-by-the-Sea at the end of his final service there on May 15. Following him in the procession is assisting priest Fr. Rick Effinger.

be made to one of the four parishes where he served as interim, St. Matthew the Apostle, Holy Sacrament, Holy Trinity and Bethesda by the Sea; Grace, where he served as deacon and priest; Hospice by the Sea in Boca Raton; or the Diocesan School Scholarship Fund. ■

Forum focuses on honest dialogue, shared experiences By Kathleen Walker The “African-Americans and Blacks of the African Diaspora” forum, co-sponsored by the Theodore R. Gibson chapter of the Union of Black Episcopalians and the diocesan office of Immigration and Social Justice on June 11 at Trinity Cathedral, Miami, was a conversation long in the making. A dynamic group of panelists shared stories and stereotypes that had been handed down to them by family members, and the discussion provided a platform for honest dialogue about the perceptions — and sometimes misunderstandings — that exist between African-Americans and blacks from other countries. The panelists included Haitian-American attorney, Beatrice Cazeau; Brenda Degraff, native of Central America and human resources professional in the hospitality industry; and Adrian Walker, who is African-American and a local columnist for the Boston Globe. Canon Richard Miller served as one of the moderators for the occasion. The lead moderator, Haitian-American attorney Karen Andre, guided much of the conversation, and panelists each had an opportunity to discuss how their community perceives other black groups. Cazeau, for instance, spent part of her childhood in New York and shared vivid memories of an uncle who strongly discouraged any fraternization with African American children, warning that their parents were dangerous or shiftless. She admits that these admonitions prevented her making friends with kids in the neighborhood. As she got older, she discovered that many of these stereotypes were shared by others who had emigrated from her homeland of Haiti. Brenda Degraff had a different experience, because when her family arrived from Guatemala they moved into the predominantly black area of Liberty

City. She attended Orchard Villa Elementary School, which was almost completely AfricanAmerican. According to Degraff, the kids in her school were curious about her and her sisters because of the language difference, and welcomed her easily. She was able to make friends quickly, and found assimilation not so difficult. Adrian Walker described a childhood in which he attended predominantly black schools and racial issues were not discussed a great deal at home. He credited his parents with shielding him and his siblings from many of the racial tensions of the late 60s and the 70s. The conversation took a different tone when Andre asked for reflections on the current relations between various ethnic groups. Some of the forum participants from other cultures recalled that there were many stereotypes related to African-Americans that they heard at home. There was a percep-

tion among many from the West Indies that their children were eager to learn and study in school, while black children born in this country squandered their time. The panelists also talked about the large role the media played in shaping perceptions about AfricanAmericans in their native lands. The whole portrayal of American blacks, according to some, was always negative. Everyone agreed that more dialogue was needed to dispel many of the notions each group had about the other, and agreed to continue to explore mutually beneficial opportunities to bridge the varying segments of the African Diaspora. ■ Kathleen Walker, a member of Church of the Incarnation, Miami, is president of the Theodore R. Gibson Chapter of the Union of Black Episcopalians and serves on the Standing Committee of the diocese.

“Vive la difference” — hearing the stories of all black ethnic groups By Archdeacon Fritz Bazin Following the June 11 forum at Trinity Cathedral on “Black Americans and Other Blacks of the Diaspora,” two gatherings in the wider church also addressed the issue of relations between the various black ethnic groups in the US. The annual Caribbean Clergy Consultation, June 14-16 in Washington, D.C., which included even a delegation from the Diocese of Toronto, Canada, reaffirmed the imperative to bring together all persons of African ancestry into greater cooperation as black Episcopalians /Anglicans. At the 43rd annual Union of Black Episcopalians (UBE) Meeting and Conference, June 27-July 1 in Norfolk, Va., there was also an emphasis on making the organization more inclusive of all black Episco-

palians. Many speakers underlined the fact that throughout the US, black congregations include large numbers of people from the West Indies, the Caribbean, Latin America and Africa. It is important to emphasize that such gatherings are pro-black, not anti-white, which is a fear expressed by some who see the name Union of Black Episcopalians as expressive of a separatist movement. In fact, people of all ethnicities are welcome to join UBE. Our church is definitely headed toward helping build a stronger black America by initiating a healthy conversation between our various black ethnic groups. The more we hear each other’s stories the healthier will be our relations and the more we will be able to celebrate our diversities. “Vive la difference.” ■


THE The Net, August 2011



Painting a church

SE Florida at PYE

Photo provided by Krista Lamberti

Above: Our EYE/PYE representatives pause in a tour of the Red Lake Nation. Left to right, front row, are Gillian Newman, Krista Lamberti, Nora Vinas and Sophia Faiella; back row, Gladys Rodriguez, Deacon Ken Sims, Emily Gonzalez-Holland and Krisan Lamberti. At right: Standing on a ladder provided by a member of the Red Lake Nation, Krita Lamberti helps paint St. John’s Church.

Photo by Gladys Rodriguez

Youth “come together” in spirit and service at EYE/PYE From June 22-26 over 700 youth, along with 300 adult advisors and 50 bishops, gathered on the campus of Bethel University in St. Paul, Minn., for the Episcopal Youth Event, a comprehensive program designed to enrich and empower the next generation of leaders in the Episcopal Church. More than 50 workshops shared knowledge, stories and skills on subjects such as prayer and spirituality, effective Bible study, youth ministry and mission trip planning. Presenters included church leaders like Maryland Bishop Eugene Sutton; the Rev. Angela Ifill, Episcopal Church black ministries officer; the Rev. Winfred Vergara, Episcopal Church Asian American ministries officer; and the Rev. Bob Honeychurch, Episcopal Church officer for congregational vitality. During the three days of the event participants also worked to build a Habitat for Humanity house on the Bethel campus. Southeast Florida was represented by Youth Commission President Emily Gonzalez-Holland of St Benedict’s, Plantation; Vice-president Krista Lamberti and Secretary Sophia Faiella, both of St.

Diocesan Youth Convention will be Sept. 30-Oct. 1 at St. Benedict’s The Diocesan Youth Convention will be held Sept. 30-Oct 1 at St. Benedict’s, Plantation, beginning with registration on Friday, from 6 –7 p.m., and ending with the Eucharist at 5:30 p.m. on Saturday. The cost is $35. The annual event offers youth of the diocese an opportunity for fellowship, worship, learning and discussion of the work of the diocese, as well as the election of Youth Commission cabinet members (president, vice-president, secretary and administrative assistant).

Stephen’s, Miami; Gillian Newman, St. Benedict’s; and Nora Vinas, Holy Cross, Miami; and adult advisors Krisan Lamberti from St. Stephen’s, and Deacon Ken Sims from Holy Family, Miami Gardens. Two others from our diocese, Michael Sahdev and Gladys Rodriguez, served on Residential Care Team for EYE, and Sahdev, a sophomore at the University of the South (Sewanee) also represented the university. Krisan Lamberti reported that at one point the SE Florida youth helped to lead “an impromptu workshop” on Happening. Gonzalez-Holland said that the most important aspect of EYE was “the building of friendships and bonds with other youth who share the same passion and faith as you do.” “There seemed to be such a comfortable sense about EYE,” she continued. “The fact that everyone was so connected was truly beautiful. The theme of this year’s EYE was, ‘Come Together,’ and not only did we do that, but we did that on such a different level — not just a national level, but (also) a spiritual level.” Following EYE, our diocesan youth moved on to

Anyone who wishes to be a candidate for one of the cabinet positions must submit the Officer Ballot Application and Parental Responsibility form, signed by a parent or guardian, no later than Sept. 2 to Mary Cobiella, diocesan administrative assistant for Youth Ministry, by email at or by fax at 305-375-8054. These forms have been sent to all parish youth ministers and leaders and are available to download from the youth ministry pages at Each congregation is encouraged to send up to 10 youth, two of whom will be voting delegates. Workshops planned for this year include missions, relationships and writing your own music. ■

the Red Lake Nation in northern Minnesota for PYE, the Province IV Youth Event. From July 26-29 they stained and painted two churches, worked on crafts with the local children, took a tour of the area and had the opportunity to learn from two Ojibwe Episcopal priests and to have worship and fellowship with the people of the community on “the rez.” “One of the most memorable things the Native American priest told the group was that he was glad we came, although no one wanted us initially, because they thought we were no use,” recalled Nora Vinas. “By the end of our two day mission we changed their perspective on what they thought youth were capable of accomplishing, and they now have faith in youth because they know there are genuinely good hearts wanting to serve.” “EYE and PYE gave something to each and every person involved, a sense of community and building in the faith,” said Gonzalez-Holland. This article was based upon reports from our diocesan EYE/PYE representatives, as well as a story for ENS by Joe Bjordal.

Youth and Young Adult Calendar 2011-2012 Sept. 30 –Oct. 1, 2011 — Youth Convention, St. Benedict’s, Plantation; cost: $35 Nov. 11-12, 2011 — Diocesan Convention, St. Joseph, Boynton Beach Dec. 17, 2011 — Young Adult Advent Summit, location TBA Dec. 17, 2011 — Christmas Ball, St. Benedict’s, Plantation; cost: $15 Feb. 17-19, 2012 — New Beginnings #3, location TBA; cost: $35 Apr. 28, 2012 — Acolyte Festival, Trinity Cathedral, Miami; cost: $15

Committed to Mission



The Net, August 2011



Trip to Haiti plants seeds for St. Andrew’s long-term mission partnership By Steve Rowland, Don Weed and Linda Pinder Over Memorial Day weekend (May 28-31), Fr. Spencer Potter, along with four parishioners (Steve Rowland, Don Weed, Linda Pinder and Erika Parker) from St. Andrew’s, Palmetto Bay, traveled to Haiti. This brief trip was the beginning of a discernment process to identify a mission project or projects that our parish can be involved in for the next 15-20 years. Fr. Potter organized the trip with the assistance of Archdeacon Fritz Bazin, the South Florida Haiti Project (SFHP) team, and the office of Pere Kesner Ajax, coordinator of the Partnership Program for the Diocese of Haiti. The team arrived early Saturday morning at Port au Prince (PAP) Airport, where we were met by our driver and guide, Claudell, whose services had been arranged for us by Angela Galbreath, assistant to Pere Ajax. After a quick stop at our hotel, we were off to visit our first mission site. We know Dorothy Pearce, the founder and director of Faith-Hope-Love Infant Rescue (FHLIR), in PAP because her brother, Robert Smith, is a St. Andrew’s parishioner. Dorothy established the children’s home where she, the staff and volunteers look after children who are either orphans, or whose poor families cannot afford to care for them. While some of the children at FHLIR are healthy and help in the care of the other children, many have significant medical needs including severe malnourishment, HIV, TB and other special needs. We spent a wonderful few hours playing with, eating with — and often just holding — the children at FHLIR. It was clear that this ministry needs our prayers, donations of goods and money, and volunteers who share a calling to this essential effort. Late Saturday afternoon we toured PAP. One of the strongest memories of the tour was a visit to the ruins of Trinity Cathedral, which was leveled by the 7.0magnitude earthquake on Jan. 12, 2010. Early this year the Episcopal Church began a churchwide appeal called Rebuild Our Church in Haiti, which focuses on helping the Diocese of Haiti rebuild the cathedral and its ministries. On Sunday morning, we were off to meet Bishop Jean Zaché Duracin. He was visiting Notre Dame de l’Annonciation in Carrefour for Confirmation Sunday. The service was held under a temporary shelter, since the church building itself had severe structural damage from the earthquake and was not safe for use. Nevertheless, the young ladies wore beautiful white dresses and bows in their hair and the young men wore white shirts, ties and black pants for their Confirmation. This wonderful celebration, although in French and Creole, was familiar to the team as we followed the order of the Book of Common Prayer. After the service, we were warmly welcomed and treated to a delicious coffee hour and introduced to Bishop Duracin and his wife, Edithe. Then we were back in the van and off to our next stop. Sunday afternoon we traveled two and a half hours west of PAP along the northern coast of the mountainous south peninsula of Haiti to the rural village community of Bondeau, just west of the port city of Miragoane. Bondeau is the home of Ste. Marie Madeleine Parish and School, which has flourished through an eight-year partnership with the South Florida Haiti Project (SFHP). We were greeted by Pere Kesner Gracia, priest-incharge and regional archdeacon, and Deacon Anita Thorstad from St. Gregory’s, Boca Raton. Once we got settled into the Maison D’Amitie guesthouse, we


“It’s you...”

■ Faith-Hope-Love Infant Rescue (FHLIR): ■ Rebuild Our Church in Haiti: iAppeal/ ■ South Florida Haiti Project: http://www.southfloridahaitiproject.o rg) ■ Ecole le Bon Samaritain:

were given a walking tour of the school facility and were able to participate in the community celebration of Bonne Fete Mama (Haitian Mother’s Day). The next morning we were transported by dugout canoe and then motor Photo by Steve Rowland skiff to nearby Bidaw. Bidaw is a small mangrove island populated by approxi- Don Weed from St. Andrew’s shows the pictures he took of new friends on the road near Bondeau. mately 145 people whose primary means of subsistence is fishing. The itain (School of the Good Samaritan) in Carrefour. In community consists of many families, with the one of the poorest neighborhoods of PAP, Fr. Jean-Elie youngest resident being a beautiful nine-day-old girl. Millien and his wife, Mona, founded this school in The poverty on Bidaw is profound, and words fail in 1996. Fr. Millien had served as an assistant at St. Anany description of the living conditions there. A projdrew’s many years ago, and several parishioners mainect is currently underway to relocate the families from tained contact with the Milliens. St. Andrew’s has Bidaw later this year into newly built housing within supported the school financially for many years, but the Bondeau community. (See story p. 1.) this was our first visit to the school. The pink-uniLater Monday afternoon, Deacon Anita and our formed students welcomed us with an enthusiastic sereguide, Junior, took us for a walk-about throughout the nade followed by an impromptu recess with the community along the highway and then up into the visitors. The school was severely damaged in the quake foothills to visit and provide whatever advice and care and is classes are currently being held in temporary we could to those we met. Our digital cameras were a shelters. The Milliens shared with us the plans to rebig hit with everyone and we could not take enough build the school facility and to continue to provide edupictures to satisfy all. The SFHP has accomplished a cational and health care opportunities to their students. tremendous amount in the past eight years with its Even though we only spent a few days in Haiti, all work in Bondeau. This partnership has built classteam members came away with an appreciation of the rooms and an administrative building for the school, tremendous needs in this poorest country in the westinitiated a feeding program for students and staff, inern hemisphere. We came home with a strong sense of stalled a diesel powered electrical generator, built the need for action. housing for staff and teachers, built a guesthouse for We found that the people of Haiti want to be in visitors, supported a small clinic within the school and is now helping relocate the residents of Bidaw into per- long-term relationship with us, not just materially and monetarily, but spiritually within the Christian commumanent housing on the mainland. An incredible nity. These imperatives for action have been brought amount has been accomplished but so much more back to the St. Andrew’s community, and plans for our needs to be done with this worthy effort. The last stop on our trip was at Ecole le Bon Samar- next steps in Haiti are well underway. ■

Visiting instructor

Photo by Marie Etienne

Dr. Helen Bhagwandin from Miami talks with students at Faculté des Sciences Infirmières de l’Université Episcopale d’Haïti (FSIL) in Leogane, Haiti, where she and other nursing instructors from Miami taught classes for several days in May.

Miami nursing instructors share skills in Leogane In early May a group of nurses from Miami went to Haiti — not to treat patients, but to spend a few days teaching at the Faculté des Sciences Infirmières de l’Université Episcopale d’Haïti (FSIL), the Episcopal nursing school in Leogane. Dr. Helen Bhagwandin of Church of the Ascension, Miami, a faculty member in the School of Nursing at Miami-Dade College, was one of that first team sent by the Haitian American Nurses Association (HANA) to teach classes at FSIL. The team included three others from the nursing faculty at Miami-Dade and a nurse/educator of Haitian heritage who works for Mt. Sinai Hospital. Since the Jan. 12, 2010, earthquake in Haiti, HANA has sent a number of teams to Haiti to respond to urgent healthcare needs there. The group became aware See SHARING SKILLS, Page 16




The Net, August 2011

Committed to Mission

Bishop’s Ministry Grants: St. George’s feeds bodies and spirits of children, homeless families By Tony Magana (The combined outreach ministry of St. Mark’s, Palm Beach Gardens, and St. George’s, Riviera Beach, in the community around St. George’s was one of 14 ministries awarded a Bishop’s Ministry Grant in May. The grants are part of a diocesan Strategy for Growing a Healthier Ministry introduced by Bishop Leo Frade at last November’s Diocesan Convention, and will provide $900,000 over a four-year period to strengthen the leadership and infrastructure within our congregations. This is the second in a series of stories about ministries that are receiving this grant funding.) The varied ministries of St. George’s Episcopal Church and Center provide in many ways for the bodies, minds and spirits of those in need in Riviera Beach and northern Palm Beach County. This summer the weak economy and government deficits resulted in a severe cutback in summer programs for youth in Riviera Beach. Hundreds of poor families in our immediate area who normally rely upon school breakfast/lunch programs during the school year for the first time faced loss of meals as well as summer enrichment programs. St. George’s has become the main refuge and sanctuary for hundreds of poor families with young children. To help provide assistance to these families we have created alliances with many government agencies, non-profits and religious institutions. Our after-school program, which was started in 2001, becomes an out-of- school program during the summer, providing a Monday through Friday program that includes nutrition, art, academic reinforcement, discovery, character building and physical education. This year-round approach allows parents to work during the summer knowing that their children will be well cared for, and has also resulted in high scores for many of these children on the fourth grade FCAT. Five paid staff members certified by the Palm Beach County Department of Health in child growth and development training, as well as many volunteers from collaborating institutions, are involved in the care of children from the first to sixth grades. Older children who have been through the program also serve as volunteers. The Executive Director of St. George’s Center, Ms. Hyacinthia Becton who holds a Master’s Degree in Education, came to St. George’s after more than 20 years experience with Palm Beach County School Board. The director of the After-School/Out of School Program, Everett Mitchell, grew up in Riviera Beach and was a college football star who returned to serve his community. He provides a wonderful male role model, which is often lacking in the lives of many poor children. This summer volunteers from Holy Trinity, West Palm Beach, and Bethesda-by-the-Sea, Palm Beach, came to St. George’s Center every Monday to lead Vacation Bible School, providing a day of Bible study and fun, with two meals and a snack included. The children enjoyed the Bible stories of Noah, Moses, Joseph and Jonah, as well as field trips to movies, bowling, Lion Country Safari, Calypso Bay water park, the Palm Beach Science Museum and the zoo. A little over a year ago, Eagle Scout candidates from St. Mark’s began to locate their projects at St.

including the Palm Beach County Health Department, Human Services and the Veteran’s Administration. Recently a new coalition has been created with the Riviera Beach Police Department to promote the peace in the community by identifying and facilitating placement of those families and individuals in need of human services. Part of our partnership with St. Mark’s, Palm Beach Gardens, has included moving St. Mark’s Thrift Shop to within a few blocks of St. George’s. The thrift shop provides low cost clothes for sale, and also provides work or interview clothes for clients of the job assistance program at St. George’s. St George’s also partners with Housing Services of Palm Beach County, Inc., to provide housing, blankets, infant clothes Photo by Tony Magana and supplies, food stamp applications, Eagle Scout candidate Rafael Magana gives instructions to homeless declaration services, pantry some of St. George’s future Boy Scouts as the children help build food, kitchen utensils and many other netheir own basketball court at St. George’s Church and Center. cessities for the recently homeless with minor children. In the future we look for George’s, the result of which has been thousands of further development and cooperation between St. man hours and capital being spent on a new playMark’s Thrift Shop, St. George’s Episcopal Church ground, basketball court, internal church renovations, and Center, Housing Services of Palm Beach County, and a new memorial garden. During the projects, esand the new Family Promise Program beginning at pecially the building of the basketball court, many Holy Spirit, West Palm Beach. ■ neighborhood children began to show up and ask to be involved. Tony Magana, a member of St. Mark’s, Palm The Boy Scouts’ presence at St. George’s began in Beach Gardens, is a lay missionary at St. George’s, the 1940s, but it had faded until the beginning of Riviera Beach, Florida. these projects. Subsequent to this new community exposure, a new ministry of Scouting was reborn as Cub Scout Pack 779. from Page 15 Thanks in part to an inner city Scout Reach grant, the new scouts have camped at Tanakeeta in that there is not only a shortage of nurses, but also a Tequesta, participated in the regional Pinewood Derby at St. Mark’s, and are planning new projects to critical need for nursing instructors. Bhagwandin said the team members were specifihelp their community. In the works is the development of Scouting for older boys that may involve co- cally invited by HANA to participate. Bringing backgrounds in a wide range of specialties, they were able operation with a marine industry charity. A major focus of St. George’s ministry has always to teach classes in such subjects as physical assessbeen our feeding program. According to the Food Re- ments, pharmacology math, advanced medical surgical nursing, oncology and research. search and Action Center one in seven Americans FSIL Dean Hilda Alcindor, who formerly lived and now is on some type of food assistance program. worked in Miami, “was most delighted to have someFlorida has one of the fastest growing needs with an one come from the Episcopal Church and made sure 18% increase in demand just over the past year. that all the students knew that they had an EpiscoAlthough the capacity in the summer program is palian faculty member,” Bhagwandin said. limited to about 50, the Center can actually seat 80 “The students were eager to learn and very enthusipeople at a time in the Parish Hall and often feeds astic about their nursing careers, and were most grate180 people or more at least twice a day during the ful for our contribution to their learning process,” she week and once on Saturday. added. St. George’s is a recognized open site for any “I plan to return.” neighborhood child to receive a nutritious free lunch. One of Bhagwandin’s ministries is parish nursing, This summer during the day and evening feedings we and she hopes to teach a class at FSIL for students inhave seen many new faces of families including reterested in that work. cent Central American immigrants, Haitian refugees, The only four-year university baccalaureate nursing and working poor African-American families, all of program in Haiti is FSIL, which has an enrollment of whom are struggling. 120 nursing students with 30 in each class. Although Everyday we have walk-ins asking for help for a the town of Leogane, east of Port-au-Prince, was 95 myriad of situations. With the recent shutdown of percent destroyed in the earthquake, the buildings at non-profits that were providing food stamp assisFSIL escaped severe damage, and nursing students and tance, we have begun to provide food stamp applicafaculty began treating the injured immediately after the tion services. Thanks to volunteers, St. George’s is also providing job search assistance, homeless decla- quake. Because Ste. Croix Hospital in Leogane did ration, mail services for the poor, free everyday cloth- suffer severe damage, the university facilities served as a hospital for three months after the quake. ■ ing, and acts as a liaison with government agencies

Scouts in training


The Net August 2011  
The Net August 2011  

The Net is the newspaper of the Diocese of Southeast Florida. This issue features a story about St. George's Episcopal Church in Riviera Bea...