Thursday, March 31

Report from the House of Bishops Meeting at Kanuga

Click the title to link to the article from the Episcopal News Service.

Episcopal Bishop's are beginning to take notice, and grasp the seriousness, of the need for young adults in our church. The Episcopal News Service printed this report from the meeting:

The Episcopal Church's House of Bishops concluded its six-day retreat meeting at the Kanuga Conference Center in Hendersonville, North Carolina, continuing the theme "selection, recruitment and formation of young leaders," preparing the church for the opportunities and challenges of the 21st century.

"We talked about recruiting, forming and educating young leaders, and that has a great deal to do with inviting members of the church and leaders to get outside church buildings and structures to meet seekers," said Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori during a closing news conference on March 30. "That was a significant part of our conversation."

Other topics were also addressed, but the article said this about the topic:

Earlier in the meeting, the bishops were led in a discussion about ministry with and to young adults by Lisa Kimball from Virginia Theological Seminary, the Rev. Arrington Chambliss and Jason Long from the Diocese of Massachusetts.

(Retired Bishop Christopher) Epting wrote on his blog that "care was taken not to treat young adults as "a demographic" and to start with the fact that they are children of God and that we have an awful lot more in common than we have differences, even though they do inhabit a radically different environment than most of the bishops in this house grew up in."

"Many of us believe that the Episcopal Church is positioned to enrich, and be enriched by, the lives of many of these young people -- but it will take commitment, flexibility, risk-taking, and the willingness to fail -- as well as to succeed -- to make it happen."

I had the pleasure of meeting Arlington and Jason at General Convention in Anaheim and was very impressed with both of them. They run one of the Episcopal Service Corp sites in Boston that is working with community organizing and teaching young adults how to do ministry in the community instead of in churches. I trust that they gave a full and faithful telling to the House and I happy that this issue is being taken seriously.

My curiosity lies in what the Bishops were hoping to learn. I will be presenting to the Prov. IV Synod in June and was wondering what you would tell the wider church if you knew they were listening?

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