A letter from the President of the Standing Committee

 

By Teri Quinn Gray

This is an exciting time for us! We are a little more than 2.5 years into writing bold, new chapters in the story of the Episcopal Church of Delaware. Yes, it has been that long since we started the search process for a new bishop in April of 2016, leading to our mutual ministry with the Rt. Rev. Kevin S. Brown as the 11th Bishop of Delaware beginning in December, 2017. Some of our evolving stories relate to shifts in the Episcopate, and others are real-life accounts of our parishes working in their normal holy response to uplift the communities where we live. Let’s tell everybody we know, every chance we get! We have a story filled with good news that almost everyone is hungry for, if for no other reason than to offset the sensationalized rhetoric that pervades our daily news backdrop.

Just peruse recent headlines and take your pick. They are filled with a backdrop of cruelty, inequity, and hurt that often bombard our psyche, causing some of us to fight and others to take flight. Occasionally, callous words alone are so shocking to our goodness that we may numb ourselves, as if such violations are someone else’s problem, when in fact, we may experience the pain just as much as the victim does. By our faith we are connected and accountable to each other. The scripture rings out that we’re a blessed people and members of one body in Jesus Christ. This makes us pay attention, stand up with valiant conviction, and reach out to improve our common well-being. We are one with God in pain and in joy — mercy and grace
prevail. This is good news worth blasting out.

If we examine our church stories a bit more deeply, we find the coping mechanisms woven throughout the chapters that help us
thrive as a hopeful people in unpredictable, wayward situations. God totally understands what it means to be human. The Holy Spirit knows that we are free to make choices, right or wrong, helpful or harmful. It’s not surprising that things get messy every now and again. From this perspective, we are free to approach uncertainty or any issue as a chance to practice grace and to model God’s will for us, rather than respond with iron fists or brutal insensitivities to any state of affairs. As God’s people, we are wired to promote healing and reconciliation in times of conflict; to seek understanding where there’s confusion; to demand justice in the wake of oppression. This kind of transformational behavior, instigated by a holy mindset, can help us stay hopeful, and ultimately keep it together during challenging times. If that’s not good news, then what is?

As we embark on this next chapter of our stories as the Episcopal Church in Delaware, let’s take every chance we get to
tell everybody we know that our good news is their good news.

A letter from the President of the Standing Committee, Teri Quinn Gray, tquinngray@verizon.net

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