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A Letter of Adoration

From your Servant Bishop and Supervisor


A Letter of Adoration

From your Servant Bishop and Supervisor

August 30, 2021
Dear Second Episcopal District Family,

Greetings! It is a blessing and honor to greet you moving forward in the 2021-2022 Conference Year. We are grateful to God and give Him all praise, honor, and glory for allowing us to come to this point. Thank you, presiding elders, pastors, clergy, laity -- children, youth, young adults, and adults. Thank you, District Components, Committees, and Ministry leaders. Over these five years, we are grateful to God and you for your passionate, compassionate, and dedicated service. We applaud you for your limitless work for Kingdom building.

We are experiencing life in a “fluid” environment. Even as this letter is being written, we hear alarming news regarding COVID-19 and the impact of the DELTA Variant. COVID is not over; please treat it as such. Be as careful as we’ve always been. Further, engulfing flooding in Tennessee, the devastation of hurricane Ida in Louisiana, and the aftermath of Ida in Alabama and Mississippi, warn us that we live in catastrophic times. There are calls from all around the world where people are seeking our help in these stressful times. Nonetheless, we know where our help comes from. Continue to walk by faith in a God who never fails.

The daily changing reports delay our new normal indefinitely. Adding to the stress are the remaining uncertainties that keep pushing back return dates to churches, community gathering spots, schools, etc. Thus, prayerfully and with scientific and medical advisement through the CDC, I’ve decided to continue delivering information through Zoom and other technologies utilizing virtual and hybrid platforms, with limited in-person events. Further, we are seeing increased instances of churches experiencing a high number of persons afflicted with the Corona Virus after holding large events, such as funerals and concerts, and even after taking precautions. My plea to our pastors and congregations is, please continue taking all necessary precautions to protect our youth and adults as we move through this new wave of COVID-19.

Thus, this letter has a four-fold purpose, namely:
1. To ask for prayers, disaster relief, and financial assistance for our brothers and sisters in such places as Haiti and other places where we have pooled our resources to bring relief to those who have been victims of catastrophic disasters. The death toll continued to rise weeks after a catastrophic earthquake struck southern Haiti; more than 2,200 deaths have been recorded so far, while at least 30,000 families had to abandon their homes; and were sleeping on the streets when Tropical Storm Grace struck two days later; bringing high winds and pelting rain The Church is the mirror that must hold up to the face of humankind. Thus, we must concern ourselves with all who are broken, bruised, and abused. The Scriptures plainly tell us, “The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’” (Matthew 25:40 (NIV).

2. Thank you for your sacrifices and support throughout the past five (5) years. Together we worked through some very tough times, and while there may be more ahead, we look joyfully and with steadfast faith and hope toward a brighter future for us all.

3. To applaud those who carved out quality time during the summer to take a break from the stresses that engulfed us over the past 18 months. This respite was needed, as we attempted to prepare for a return to some semblance of normalcy. To those who missed this break opportunity, remember the “Self-Care” virtual Conversation experiences you engaged in Conference Year 2020.

4. To share heads-up on our vision and mission for the programmatic year 2021-2022 of the Second Episcopal District (SED) through our 2021-2024 Quadrennial. In short, where do we go from here as we continue God’s work as we embark on a difficult yet necessary journey for Kingdom building and Kingdom living? How do we effectively address all people's spiritual, physical, intellectual, and emotional needs by spreading the liberating gospel of Jesus Christ, internally and externally? We are already poised to do greater things. Following the General Conference, our SED Leadership and staff have already shared with me through zoom meetings impressive organization plans.

In addition to the Delta Variant threat, we will highlight other critical areas that need immediate attention. These events will take place in October 2021. The specific date for each event is listed below. They are as follows:

Clergy Re-Commitment Symposium and the 2nd Episcopal District-Wide Ordination Ceremony - October 14-15, 2021. This is an in-person hybrid event by invitation only! Stay tuned! Details will be provided shortly in documents through our various platforms and social media.

Disaster Relief Freewill Love Offering for Haiti and other critical locations of need. The first reporting period is October 6, 2021; the final reporting period is October 28, 2021. Stay tuned! Details will be provided shortly in documents through our various platforms and social media.

We will open SED Hope Centers across the District to receive items identified by Bishop E. Anne Henning- Byfield (soap, deodorants, feminine hygiene products, blankets, baby food, wipes, and diapers) for distribution to persons in Tennessee who are suffering and need assistance as a result of massive flooding. We ask that you begin gathering the items as quickly as this letter reaches you. You will receive information on the hours the Hope Centers will be opened to receive items and locations nearest you. Stay tuned! Details will be posted shortly in documents through our various platforms and social media.

Level Up Pledge Campaign – October 16, 2021. Help us transform our church’s future through your Personal gifts and sacrifices. Be prepared to make your pledge and/or pay your pledge via Zoom on October 16, 2021. Wes Moore stated the call for action succinctly. He said, “No one can do everything, but everyone can do something.” We encourage everyone to be on the platform to make their pledge or initial donation for our Level Up campaign. Remember, our vision is to pay off the mortgage on our property. Paying off the mortgage will empower us to produce greater resources to support the general budget, leaving more resources in our churches to do ministry at home and in the community.

Stay tuned! Details will be provided shortly in documents through our various platforms and social media. STAY TUNED! As stated earlier, a comprehensive Calendar of Events for the Second Episcopal District, and details on each of the points of concern, are forthcoming through our various media platforms.

Thank you for walking this faith journey with us in the Second District. Together, through the strength of God’s Holy Spirit, we will demonstrate what it means to be God’s people called to do God’s mission in the world. Any feedback that you might have is always welcome.In Love – For Jesus’ Sake. Let’s walk together!

James Levert Davis & Arelis Beevers DavisServant Leaders

 

 
 
 

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