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Category: The Lead

Episcopalians Continue Serving the Needy

There have been several items in the news this week about Episcopal churches stepping up to help in any way they can during the pandemic. Here is a small sampling of those efforts.

From Vermont, a parish which has expanded its homeless ministry:

With the pandemic came an opportunity.

The Rev. Earl Kooperkamp and the people of the Church of the Good Shepherd in Barre had been working to help homeless people in Washington County for more than a […]

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Bishops of Dioceses of Virginia, Maryland and Washington, D.C. issue letter on regathering

As the Wisconsin Council of Churches recently wrote to its member congregations,
“What future we find ourselves in depends not only on the behavior of the virus, but on the actions of people–as individuals, churches, communities, and governments. The way forward will not be a matter of following a timetable, but of faithfully discerning the signs of the times, and responding accordingly.”

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25% of British Public Tunes in to Worship

A third of young adults aged between 18 and 34 had watched or listened to an online or broadcast religious service, compared with one in five adults over the age of 55. One in five of those who have tuned into services in the past few weeks say they have never gone to church.

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Reopening Churches? Not So Fast

Faith leaders, Episcopal and otherwise, have been far less enthusiastic this week about the prospects of returning to business as usual. That has been especially true in Georgia, following the governor’s announcement that businesses would be allowed to open over the course of the next several days. From our friends at ENS:

The prospect of physically gathering in church for a worship service would have been unthinkable for most Episcopal congregations just a month ago, after the escalating coronavirus […]

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Association of Anglican Musicians urges adherence to COVID-19 guidelines

A press release from the Association of Anglican Musicians “strongly urges AAM members to follow all directives as set forth by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (www.cdc.gov) for slowing the spread of COVID-19. Social distancing and self- quarantining are appropriate and will necessitate the alteration of plans for rehearsals, performances, and liturgies.”

The Association President, Marty Wheeler Burnett, noted that the statement was necessary because

some members report being required to work in settings where CDC guidelines are […]

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Episcopalians Pitch in to Provide Food During the Pandemic

There have been a number of stories in the mainstream press this week about parishes and dioceses stepping up to offer food assistance during the COVID-19 emergency. A Google search for “Episcopal food pandemic” yielded over 800,000 hits. Here is a sampling of some of those news stories:

From the NY Times:

When the coronavirus upended ordinary life in New York, John Merz, an Episcopal priest who looks like a band manager of mid-1990s vintage, determined that more people needed […]

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70% of Americans want to die at home

“Simply put, there are values that trump the singular goal of lowering COVID-19 infection rates. One of those is the compassion to accompany loved ones as they pass away and provide them with clergy.” – Charles Camosy writing in Religion News Service

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Lex orandi, lex credendi—“Praying shapes believing.”

My tradition teaches a simple idea expressed in the Latin aphorism Lex orandi, lex credendi—“Praying shapes believing.” Right now, people are praying at home, in their own surroundings, separated from community. And I believe that this may be the practice that shapes the belief of the post-COVID-19 era. – Bishop of The Episcopal Church in Europe

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The Episcopal Café seeks to be an independent voice, reporting and reflecting on the Episcopal Church and the Anglican tradition.  The Café is not a platform of advocacy, but it does aim to tell the story of the church from the perspective of Progressive Christianity.  Our collective sympathy, as the Café, lies with the project of widening the circle of inclusion within the church and empowering all the baptized for the role to which they have been called as followers of Christ.

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