Tuesday, November 27th, 2018
Dear Friends in Christ,
I write to confirm that the opening date of the 235th Annual Convention of the Episcopal Diocese of Pennsylvania has been set for the evening of Friday, November 9 and continues on Saturday, November 10, 2018. The Convention will be held at the Philadelphia Episcopal Cathedral, 38th Street between Market and Chestnut. Eucharist will begin on Friday, November 9 at 6:30 p.m., followed by a reception serving heavy Hors D'oeuvres. Registration will begin at 7:30 a.m. on Saturday, November 10, gathering music at 8:15 a.m. with Morning Prayer beginning at 8:30 a.m.
The theme of this year's Convention is:
"Walking out into the World...Turn hearts of stone into hearts of flesh"
And I will give them one heart, and put a new spirit within them. And I will take the heart of stone out of their flesh and give them a heart of flesh"
This year at Convention, the Diocese will be doing a service project: Blessing Bags. Together, we will assemble Blessing Bags for those who are experiencing homelessness. More information on the Blessing Bags is available here.
Once again, I invite all clergy to attend the Friday, November 9th worship and a final "Budget Hearing" beginning at 4:30 p.m., followed by a reception at the Cathedral.
Pre-Convention Meetings (where the budget and resolutions are discussed) are scheduled for the following dates and location:
* September 18, 2018 - St. George St. Barnabas - 6:30 p.m. - 8:00 p.m.
* September 27, 2018 - Church of the Messiah - 6:30 p.m. - 8:00 p.m.
* October 2, 2018 - St. Martin's, Radnor - 6:30 p.m. - 8:00 p.m.
* October 9, 2018 - St. Andrews, Yardley - 6:30 p.m. - 8:00 p.m.
Lay and clerical delegates are asked to register onlinehttps://www.diopa.org/diocesan-convention-2018/, any time after September 15, 2018. The registration fee is $75.00 per delegate. The fee may be mailed to Jennifer Tucker, Episcopal Diocese of Pennsylvania, 3717 Chestnut Street, Suite 300, Philadelphia, PA 19104 or brought with you on the day of Convention. If you have any questions or need help with registration, please contact Kristen Kelly or Jennifer Tucker at 215-627-6434.
I also write to remind you that according to our canons, the following items are due from each parish vestry no later than the opening of convention if they have not already been submitted:
* The Annual Parochial Report for the Calendar year 2017
* An audit of parish finances for the Calendar year 2017
* Your commitment of Sacred Gifts (formerly "canonical" assessment and a voluntary pledge)
If your vestry is unable to submit these items prior to Convention, a written explanation is requested so that the Convention may have a greater understanding for its consideration regarding seat, voice and vote for the parish delegation to Convention.
This letter is a reminder of our common discipline and accountability to one another, which we are called to as Episcopalians of the Diocese of Pennsylvania. We belong to one another. We make one another stronger.
As we prepare to gather at Convention in November, I call us to daily prayer for our Diocese and its Convention. In our prayers for our world and one another, let us give thanks that God continues to sustain the Church out of the abundance of divine love and forgiveness. Let us pray to be energized by the Holy Spirit to look forward with eager expectation to the mission God lays before us. Let us celebrate the promise of hope and redemption God has made to the Church and the world.
God bless our Diocesan family. God bless you in your ministries. Godspeed in your labors on behalf of God's mission in our world.
In the Peace of the Risen Christ,
The Rt. Rev. Daniel G. P. Gutiérrez
XVI Bishop of The Episcopal Diocese of Pennsylvania