Episcopal Diocese of Washington

To draw people to Jesus and embody his love
for the world by equipping faith communities,
promoting spiritual growth, and striving for justice

News & Features

2019 Fall Congregational Growth Grants Awarded

December 06, 2019

Fall Grants Awarded

During the November meeting, Diocesan Council awarded seven congregational grants totaling $91,850 in six diocesan regions.

In Central DC, the Church of the Epiphany will continue to enhance their justice work through The Epiphany Power Hour, a free social justice conversation series taking place every Thursday. The Power Hour was born out of Epiphany's long history of befriending the poor, coupled with the community organizing experience of our rector, the Reverend Glenna Huber.

In North DC, Trinity, DC will concentrate its efforts on revitalization through focused attention on a Family Ministry initiative. It is designed to expand and grow their commitment to the Jesus Movement through an intentional outreach effort into their surrounding neighborhood to attract families and head of households who are in the age range of 30-45 and their children.

In South DC, St. Augustine's will be able to embark on the work of the Unstuck Group.

In Southern Maryland, two parishes received grants: Christ Church, La Plata and Christ Church, Wayside will expand on their HeartSongs open-mic program they implemented in the Spring and will offer a fresh expression Sunday evening worship service.  St. Paul's, Piney will partner with area elementary school through relationship-based outreach that will be rooted in one of the parish's four core values of bringing God's hope, healing, and fellowship to their community.

In Central Montgomery County, St. Mary Magdalene will expand and support their music program between both English and Spanish speaking congregations as music is a vital part of worship in a multicultural community.

In North Montgomery County, St. Anne's will embark on creating a fresh expression of worship that uses the information gained  using MissionInsite and Experian Mosaic lifestyle categories that were more likely to respond to a unique experience and message of God. 

Category: Uncategorized
Tag: grants

Seventh Annual National Vigil for All Victims of Gun Violence

December 05, 2019

A survivor speaks eloquently about the effects of gun violence on her life. 

Last night St. Mark's, Capitol Hill hosted the 7th Annual National Vigil for All Victims of Gun Violence. Those gathered came to remember and lament the lives lost and affected by gun violence in the United States. Moderated by the Rev. Michele Morgan, rector of St. Mark's, the event featured remarks from many elected officials, including Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi. Most compelling though, were the testimonies from survivors of gun violence. All present were invited to pray and to commit themselves to advocate for sensible gun protection laws and the end of gun violence.

The Rev. Michele H. Morgan, rector of St. Mark's, stands beside Rep. Ted Deutch (FL-22)

The Right Reverend Mark M. Beckwith, retired bishop of Newark, advocates for an end to gun violence. 

Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi addresses those gathered. 

Category: News

Deacon Ordination Service, November 16, 2019

November 21, 2019

Savannah Ponder listens intently to Bishop Mariann, supported by friends and family, including members of L'Arche Greater Washington, D.C.St. Stephen and the Incarnation, and St. John's Lafayette Square, where she serves as the assistant for ministries to children, youth, and families.  (All photos: Donovan Marks)

Read Bishop Mariann's sermon for the Ordination of a Deacon: Character, Chemistry, Competence.

The Rev. Bruce McPherson offers the litany of prayers.

J. Matthew Ponder, Savannah's husband, and Eileen Schofield vest the new deacon.

The Rev. Savannah Ponder, newly ordained deacon, prepares the table.

Bishop Mariann blesses the people, and the people respond, Amen.

The Rev. Savannah Ponder among the many present  to witness her ordination into the Sacred Order of Deacons. 

The Rev. Savannah Ponder with three of her presenters (l-r: The Rev. Rob W. Fisher, Savannah, Ms. Jane Bishop, The Rev. Dr. Samuel Dessordi Leite, missing is The Rev. Emily Griffin).

Category: News

BorderLinks Pilgrimage

November 14, 2019

Members of the EDOW BorderLinks delegation

The U.S/Mexico border wall 
This week 13 people from the Episcopal Diocese of Washington have been on pilgrimage at the Arizona/Mexico border, learning more about the challenges facing immigrants seeking a better life crossing into the United States. The trip was arranged through BorderLinks, a residential program dedicated to teaching participants through various experiences, the plight of US immigrants.

The group hiked through the desert to simulate the experiences of those crossing the Mexican border into Arizona; visited the border wall in Nogales, Arizona/Mexico; visited a shelter sponsored by Cruzando Fronteras, a ministry of Andrew’s Episcopal Church, Nogales, AZ, for persons trying to immigrate into the US in Nogales, Mexico; and the group sat in on Operation Streamline proceedings, criminal court hearings where 61 persons arrested by the US Border Patrol were adjudicated with federal detention facility sentences in 59 minutes!

The pilgrims will be returning to the Diocese of Washington with experiences to share and insights into how we can cross borders to support and empower the people of God. 
The Rev. Canon Paula Clark says of her time among the men, women, and children whose communities are inextricably affected by what happens along the border, "This was a life-changing, meaningful experience."

Families and communities affected by U.S immigration policy

EDOW delegation members, including the Rev. Canon Paula Clark, with two of the youth they met on their pilgrimage to the border

The EDOW delegation stands beside the border wall

Category: News

A Call for Champions

October 31, 2019

After this the Lord appointed seventy others and sent them on ahead of him in pairs to every town and place where he himself intended to go. He said to them, “The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few; therefore ask the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into his harvest.”
Luke 10:1-2, NRSV

How about them Nats?!!! Whether or not you’re a baseball fan, the story of the Washington Nationals quest to become the MLB’s 2019 World Series Champions is compelling. The Nationals started out the season poorly, and as Nationals Manager Dave Martinez said in his post-game interview, “Guess what? We stayed in the fight. We won the fight! ...We were down and out. We were 19-31. We didn't quit then, we weren't going to quit now.”

As a die-hard sports fan, and a native Washingtonian, I’ve been longing for some championship teams for some time. Yet, in 2018 and 2019, our blessings were abundant. The Capitals winning the Stanley Cup last year, the Mystics winning the WNBA Championship earlier this month, and the Nationals winning the World Series last night just fills my sports junkie heart with joy, and I dare say, joy abounds in the DMV today.

But, as a die-hard cheerleader for the Diocese of Washington, I can’t help but wonder how we can translate that winning, never-quit attitude to our efforts to spread the love of Jesus and build up the Body of Christ in our diocese. 

The Diocesan Strategic Plan was approved in early October, after months of meeting with faithful people of God all across the Diocese.

From these efforts, we identified three areas of focus for our collective work over the next five years: 

  • Revitalize our churches to grow the Jesus Movement

  • Inspire every person to grow in faith & equip our leaders to lead well

  • Partner in ministries of service & justice for greater impact in our communities

We then chose three specific measurable objectives to accomplish in the first 12 months of Strategic Plan implementation, one under each area of focus.  

Those objectives are:

  • Church Revitalization -- We will provide church health assessments and revitalization strategies, and introduce these strategies to ten representative congregations.  

  • Spiritual Formation -- We will establish a school for Christian leadership.  

  • Justice -- We will work with each region to identify a primary ministry of justice on which to collaborate for greater social impact. 

As Jesus appointed the 70 to go out, we are seeking “champions,” people passionate about Church Revitalization, Spiritual Formation or Justice and willing to invest their time, talent and expertise in tilling the soil of our potential so that we may harvest the bounty we believe God has in store for the diocese. To that end, we have started putting together leadership teams of lay and ordained people who can help us advance in our first three ministry objectives. 

If you are excited about our Diocesan initiatives, and are fired up by our mission, “To draw people to Jesus and embody his love for the world by equipping faith communities, promoting spiritual growth, and striving for justice,” we’d like to talk with you further about serving on one of our teams of champions and we invite you to complete this brief online form by November 30.  

We plan to announce and commission these Strategic Plan leadership teams at Diocesan Convention, January 25, 2020.  

We are excited about what God has in store for the Diocese of Washington. God calls us to “stay in the fight” for our church, God’s people, the nation and the world. We believe that with the support of Church Revitalization, Spiritual Formation and Justice champions, we will gather a joyous harvest. 

Category: Events

Sharing Faith cards can be printed (double sided) from the document located here: Faith Cards Avery 8387. They are on Avery 8387 postcard stock and need to be cut in half  once printed.