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A free floating commentary on culture, politics, economics, and religion based on a passionate commitment to the truth and a desire graciously to refute that which is contrary to it….
"He must hold firm to the sure word as taught, so that he may be able to give instruction in sound doctrine and also to confute those who contradict it."
--Titus 1:9, Revised Standard Version
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Received via email--KSH
Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
Much has happened these last two weeks in and around the Diocese. The 142nd Diocesan Convention (June 11-13th) went very well. Approximately 900 clergy, lay deputies, visitors and youth attended the Convention. We began Friday evening with Evensong, led by Dean Vang, followed by the Bishop’s Address and the Opening Business Session. A copy of the Bishop’s Address will be posted on the Diocesan Website. Very appreciative of all that so many people have done throughout the Diocese, I spent a great deal of time (as those who attended can attest) recognizing people and offering special thanks for their efforts and many contributions. While I firmly believe it is important to recognize and thank people for a job well done, it is hard to identify everyone in a timely manner in the context of the Bishop’s Address. As recommended by many of you in your evaluations, at next year’s Diocesan Convention the much deserved recognition and thank you’s will be offered in various ways other than during the Bishop’s Address.
Each of the five resolutions presented were approved overwhelmingly:
R1 - Trinity Church, Rensselaerville was assigned to the Metropolitan Deanery;
R2 - Endorsement of the Anglican Communion Covenant;
R3 - The diocesan recommended standard clergy stipend schedule was increased by 2.5% along with a $5 recommended increase to the standard supply clergy compensation amount;
R4 - Approval of the 2011 Diocesan Budget of $1,657,546;
R5 - Approval of the Reduced Standard Assessment Formula for Parish Assessments for 2011
The resolution most heavily debated was Resolution #2 which stated: “RESOLVED, that the Episcopal Diocese of Albany endorses the Anglican Communion Covenant (final text, approved for distribution December 18, 2009) and recommends its adoption by all the Provinces of the Anglican Communion.”
The resolution passed by a 4 to 1 margin: 314 (yes) to 76 (no). Each canonically resident clergy present and lay deputy was allowed to vote. As I have stated on earlier occasions, by endorsing the Anglican Communion Covenant, The Diocese of Albany is sending a strong message and signal to the rest of The Episcopal Church and the wider Anglican Communion that we greatly value our Anglican heritage and relationships throughout the world, and that we intend by the grace of God to honor that which is asked of us in the Anglican Communion Covenant, worshipping and serving our Lord Jesus Christ, sharing the Gospel in cooperation and close relationship with our brothers and sisters in Christ throughout the Anglican Communion. The Anglican Communion Covenant does not ask us (the Diocese of Albany) to do anything that we are not already doing, nor does it ask the Diocese of Albany to be anything other than who we are.
In other Convention related news, the following individuals were elected to their respective offices:
Deputies to General Convention (4 Priests / 4 Laity): The Very Rev. David Collum, The Rev. Scott Garno, The Rev. Canon Robert Haskell, The Very Rev. John Scott III, Richard Carroll, Deborah Fish, Sue Ellen Ruetsch, Elizabeth Strickland
Ecclesiastical Trial Court: The Rev. Laurie Garramone-Rohr, Sue Armstrong and Lawrence Norville. The Rev. Mark Michael is the clergy Alternate.
The Standing Committee: The Rev. Lynne Curtis, The Rev. Derik Roy, Jennifer Dean and Ray Rockwell.
I am very appreciative to everyone who allowed their names to be nominated and congratulate those who were elected. May the Lord bless you and the Diocese in your ministry.
In addition to the above elections, the Convention approved my nomination of The Very Rev. David Collum and the Very Rev. Christopher Brown as Archdeacons, assisting me in better ministering to the people of the Diocese of Albany and the wider community, particularly in the metropolitan area and the North Country.
The rest of the Convention Weekend was filled with a variety of wonderful workshops (approx. 67), Spirit-filled worship, fellowship, food, entertainment, Vacation Bible School and the Youth Rally. I am very appreciative to every one who attended and helped make this year’s Diocesan Convention such a success. I am also very appreciative to our guest speakers: Archbishop Drexel Gomez (Retired Archbishop and Primate of the West Indies), and the Rev. Michael Chapman (Bishop Suffragan-Elect of Peru). We were very blessed by their presence and the message the Lord gave them to share.
No sooner had the 142nd Diocesan Convention come to an end, then we began planning for next year’s 143rd Diocesan Convention. I want to thank those of you who filled out the evaluation forms from Convention. Your thoughts and recommendations are greatly appreciated and help us as we continue to try to make the Diocesan Convention the best that it can be.
On Saturday, June 19th, The Venerable David Collum was installed as the 20th Dean of the Cathedral of All Saints. The Service was well attended with members from the Cathedral and the wider diocese. Incorporating much of the installation service designed by Bishop Doane (1st Bishop of Albany), the service was very moving and quite beautiful, (despite a few occasions when I could not get my eyes and mouth to cooperate with the page in front of me). I am very excited for Dean Collum and the Cathedral of All Saints as they begin their new ministry together worshipping and serving God, sharing the Gospel of Jesus Christ, and ministering to the people in the metropolitan area as well as throughout the Diocese.
This past Monday, June 21st, I traveled to Philadelphia to ordain the Rev. Kyle Tomlin to the priesthood. Fr. Tomlin was sponsored by the Diocese of Albany for ordination and has been called as rector of St. Alban’s, Philadelphia. May the Lord bless him in his new ministry.
In between everything else going on, we have had a number of confirmation services and parish visitations the past two weeks to include: St. Stephen’s, Delmar; Christ Church, Duanesburg; St. Hubert’s, Lake Pleasant, each of which was very enjoyable and a blessing to be a part of.
Today, I am off to Troy to attend the final team meeting and planning session for the upcoming mission trip to Peru (July 19-31). Later this evening I will be heading up to the North Country in preparation for parish visitations and confirmations tomorrow at Grace Church, Canton and St. Philip’s, Norwood.
I pray that the Lord blesses each of you richly this week in your worship together and as you go forth boldly into the world in His name.
Faithfully Yours in Christ,
--(The Rt. Rev.) Bill Love is Bishop of Albany
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