Presiding Bishop Michael Curry to visit diocese April 6-8, 2017

The Most Rev. Michael Curry, presiding bishop of The Episcopal Church, will visit the Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth Thursday, April 6, through Saturday, April 8. Bishop Curry calls himself the chief evangelist of The Episcopal Church, and he will bring that emphasis with him.

“I Love to Tell the Story” is the theme of the visit. It is taken from the hymn written as a poem by an English Anglican evangelist, Arabella Katherine Hankey, in 1866 and set to music by American William G. Fischer. The hymn is in the first person singular, making it a personal statement of faith, adding to its power. The hymn is in one of the Episcopal hymnals, “Lift Every Voice and Sing.”

The refrain is probably the most familiar:

“I love to tell the story, ’twill be my theme in glory,

To tell the old, old story of Jesus and His love.”

Bishop Curry will be accompanied by the Rev. Canon Michael Hunn, canon to the presiding bishop for ministry within The Episcopal Church.

Thursday, April 6: presiding bishop to visit Parker County, refugee ministries

Bishop Curry will tour Walsh, the new community being built on the site of the Walsh Ranch west of Fort Worth, and the site of a new church plant being funded in part by a grant from The Episcopal Church. He will bless the church plant and formally commission the church planting team on site at Walsh. Bishop Curry will also visit Refugee Services of Texas in Fort Worth, and meet refugee families aided by Episcopal congregations, visit with RST staff, and meet the Episcopalians volunteering in an English as a Second Language program. Read about the presiding bishop’s Thursday activities here.

Friday, April 7, daytime: “Learning to Love Telling My Story” gathering

On Friday, April 7, everyone is invited to  “Learning to Love Telling My Story” a gathering from 9 am to 4:30 pm at St. Christopher Episcopal Church in Fort Worth. It will begin with Morning Prayer with bishops Curry and Scott Mayer. Following a break, Bishop Curry and Canon Hunn will take part in separate conversations with clergy and laity, with each man spending time with both groups.

After lunch, there will be a presentation from 1:30 to 2:30 pm by Ms. Kathy Culmer, a professional storyteller who will give pointers in how to tell one’s personal faith story with integrity and brevity. Culmer is the director of religious education at St. James, Houston. She is pursuing her Doctor of Ministry degree from the United Theological Seminary in Dayton, Ohio. She is a graduate of Spelman College and the University of South Florida. She is an author, storyteller, teacher, and retreat leader. Kathy has been a workshop presenter at the National Storytelling Conference, the National Christian Education Conference for the Episcopal Church, National Conference for the Episcopal Church Women, National Episcopal Youth Event, as well as part of a biblical storytelling mission trip to Gambia in West Africa.

Following her presentation, participants will take part in an experiential workshop from 3 to 4:30 pm that will give them opportunities to craft and share their stories.

Registration is $20 for Friday’s activities and includes lunch.

Register Here

St. Christopher Episcopal Church
3550 SW Loop 820, Fort Worth, TX 76133
Map to St. Christopher

Friday, April 7, evening: bishops’ kickoff dinner for New Life Fund

Join Bishop Curry and all our bishops as our diocese kicks off the “New Life Fund: Growing in New Ways” campaign at a 6 pm dinner on Friday, April 7, at Colonial Country Club.

The New Life Fund: Growing in New Ways campaign will raise $200,000 over a two-year-period in matching funds for the $600,000 in grant money from The Episcopal Church. Learn more about the goals of this fund, get a general admission ticket or a reserved seat at a bishop’s table, or make a contribution to this fund here:

kick off the new campaign

Saturday, April 8: Holy Eucharist at University Christian Church

On Saturday, April 8, there will be a Eucharist at 11 am at University Christian Church. Bishop Curry will lead the worship service and preach.

Bishop Curry and Bishop Mayer will leave shortly after the service for a visit with the Episcopal Diocese of Northwest Texas.

University Christian Church
2720 S. University Drive, Fort Worth, TX 76109
Map to University Christian Church

UPDATES: this story was updated to include details of Friday, April 7 activities and Thursday, April 6 activities.

Help refugee families learn English

If you would like to help refugees in the Fort Worth area practice their English skills, come to an introductory training this Thursday evening, March 22 at the diocesan offices from 6 to 8 pm.

A member of the Refugee Services of Texas organization will give some information on volunteering to help their clients in this way. Eleanor Brockman, a current teacher of English as a Second Language at Tarrant County College’s south campus, and the Rev. Jordan Haynie-Ware, a former ESL instructor with the Peace Corps, will provide tips and resources for how to support people in learning English.

You don’t need special skills – you already have the most important skill for this task if you speak English. Attend the training to see whether this type of volunteering is a good fit for you. If you’re unable to attend but are interested in this option, contact Deacon Tracie Middleton in the diocesan office.

Buy tickets for dinner online

Join the Most Rev. Michael Curry, presiding bishop of The Episcopal Church, for a dinner launching the New Life Fund: Growing in New Ways fundraising campaign at 6 pm Friday, April 7, at Colonial Country Club in Fort Worth.

Complete the form below to register and buy tickets. Please check your email inbox for a confirmation email after submitting the form. If you don’t receive an email, contact the diocesan office to double-check that we received your registration.

PB Visit: Friday Dinner

Registration

If a vegetarian or gluten free option is needed, select "Other" and type in your dietary restriction.
You can purchase a table (seating 8) for $750.
If you are registering 8 people, request 1 table. If you are registering 10 people, request 1 table and indicate 2 additional people in the next question.
For example, if you are registering 10 people in total, you will register 1 table and 2 additional people.
$
The donation amount for the dinner is $100 per person.
If you choose "Online", after you submit this form, you should be directed to the PayPal site - where you can use either a PayPal account or a credit or debit card. If you will pay by check, make the check out to "Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth" with "Friday Dinner" in the memo and send it to our billing address: PO Box 8695, Fort Worth, TX 76124

Seating at bishops' tables

If you are interested in requesting to sit at a table with the presiding bishop or with one of the bishops of Fort Worth, please contact Michele King at the diocesan office. The suggested donation amount for a seat at one of the Fort Worth bishops' tables is $200. The suggested donation amount for a seat at the presiding bishop's table is $400.
Include your comments and/or questions here.
Sending

Learn more about church planting and missional communities

What does the church look like when it goes out into the community and gathers in non-traditional places, connecting with people who might not feel comfortable in a traditional setting? If you have an interest in exploring this question, consider learning more about missional communities. There are two events coming up in April at Virginia Theological Seminary (VTS), and another event in May in the Diocese of Texas.

Missional Voices Gathering: April 21-22 at VTS

Alan Bentrup, one of the co-founders of Missional Voices, is inviting people from as many dioceses as possible to collaborate and share ideas at the 2017 Missional Voices National Gathering April 21-22 at Virginia Theological Seminary:

The 2017 Missional Voices National Gathering brings together church leaders, seminarians, church planters, entrepreneurs, artists, and everyday innovators to discuss innovative ministries and missional communities both within and outside of the traditional church context.

 

Missional Voices is a weekend of thinking, planning, and dreaming about the future ministry in The Episcopal Church and Anglican Communion. It is a place where dynamic incubation of new ideas is the norm – not the exception – and where people doing uncommon ministry find support and encouragement.

Speakers

Andy Doyle and Becca Stevens keynote the 2017 gathering, with additional talks by Nancy Frausto, Tim & Kirsten Baer, and Tamara Plummer. The weekend also includes panel discussions featuring theologians, diocesan missioners, and parish clergy. Learn more about the speakers.

Details

When: Friday-Saturday, April 21-22, 2017
Where: Virginia Theological Seminary in Alexandria, Virginia
Cost: $99 (includes meals); free to current seminarians
Register online.

Genesis Gathering: April 20 at VTS

The Genesis Gathering will convene one day before the Missional Voices gathering, on April 20. It’s not a training event but rather is designed for those who are exploring missional ministry as a possibility and for those already creating such communities. Registration is $50, and the registration fee is waived for current grant recipients. The deadline to register is April 7.  Register online here.

4Saints Episcopal Food Pantry’s grant from The Episcopal Church was to support the four churches in the Fort Worth East Deanery in creating this ministry as a type of Mission Enterprise Zone. The goal is not just that people receive food, but that community forms as we connect with our neighbors.

The grant for St. Francis’ restart also came through the same initiative for supporting church planting and innovative ways of ‘doing church.’

Cultivate Conference: May 5-7 at Camp Allen

Several dioceses have been exploring ways to create community centered around loving God and neighbors that are outside the traditional settings of churches. For example, the Diocese of Texas has put a big emphasis on these ideas in recent ideas, creating resources for trying out these kinds of initiatives. A conference set for May 5-7, “Cultivate,” will further explore missional communities. Registration is limited for this event, held at Camp Allen in Navasota.

Parker County church plant receives grant funding

The Executive Council of The Episcopal Church has approved a grant of $100,000 to the Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth for a church plant in Parker County. Parker County is the site of Walsh, the new development west of Fort Worth on what was the Walsh Ranch. It is currently the largest buildout in the United States.
“We are excited to partner with you in this church plant! Our sense is that we have much to learn from your new ministry, and partnering with you financially is our way of inviting you into our church-wide community of practice,” said the Rev. Tom Brackett, New Church Starts and Missional Initiatives, and the Rev. Jane Gerdsen, chair of the Advisory Group on Church Planting, in a letter to Ms. Marti Fagley announcing the grant.
The grant is contingent on the hiring of a trained church planter, the use of a coach as the project develops, and matching funds raised by the Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth. The core of the church planting team will be the St. Francis Episcopal Church congregation in Parker County, led by Fagley.
The St. Francis congregation lost their worship site and, after an alternative site fell through, they worshiped with various congregations in the diocese for the last year as they worked on this grant, which is making possible a dream they have had for years.
“We are excited and grateful to everyone who has worked with us on this grant,” Fagley said. “We are looking forward to worshiping in our community and to providing ministry to our neighbors with an extremely welcoming and diverse church. We are excited about the future.”
Bishop Scott Mayer said, “We’ve talked a lot about being on fire with the Spirit in this diocese, and I am grateful to the Executive Council for funding this part of the work that had grown out of our energy and drive. The St. Francis team has been working on this for long time. They’re ready; we’re ready. Let’s do this.”

Register for activities on Friday, April 7

Presiding Bishop Michael Curry will be in the Diocese of Fort Worth April 6-8. Register below for activities on Friday, April 7 at St. Christopher’s, including a morning prayer service, conversations with Bishop Curry and Canon Michael Hunn, lunch, and a presentation and interactive workshops on how to share our stories of faith.

PB Visit: Friday - Registration

Registration

If you would like to include the name of your congregation and city, diocese, or organization on your nametag, type it here.
If you or any of the people you have registered have dietary restrictions or special needs we should be aware of, describe them here.
$
The registration fee per person is $20 and covers lunch and part of the speakers' expenses.
If you choose "Online", after you submit this form, you should be directed to the PayPal site - where you can use either a PayPal account or a credit or debit card. If you will pay by check, make the check out to "Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth" with "Friday Registration" in the memo and send it to our billing address: PO Box 8695, Fort Worth, TX 76124
Sending