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All over our region, congregations are embracing new ways of working on behalf of the Gospel. If you have a story to tell about work your community is doing, please email us.

Good Shepherd, Irving Hosts Thomas Indian School Visit

On Saturday, September 11, the Rev. Roland Cooper and Good Shepherd, Irving, hosted 30 people from across the partnership dioceses, including Bishop Sean, for worship and to visit the grounds of the former Thomas Indian School. The school tour was led by Faith Stewart, senior warden at Good Shepherd and a local school teacher. The…

From Bishop Sean: New Masking Recommendations

Dear People of God in Western New York and Northwestern Pennsylvania: In late May, as COVID-19 cases and deaths declined, I wrote to you with revised guidelines for reopening our church buildings. At that time, I invited congregations to gather outdoors whenever possible and recommended that masks and social distance be required indoors until all…

Resources for Celebrating Pride Month

Last week, the partnership hosted an online Pride Sunday vigil. The following resources may be useful for congregations wishing to host their own services during Pride Month. Liturgical Resources Pride Sunday sermon by the Rev. Canon Cathy Dempesy-Sims “The Welcoming Prayer” by Father Thomas Keating Welcome, welcome, welcome. I welcome everything that comes to me…

From the New Mission Field: A Book Discussion Series

Later in June, Canon Twila Smith will launch a new weekly book discussion series on Zoom. Each Tuesday at 6 p.m., a panel of clergy and lay leaders will discuss a new book about mission, including some recent, emerging-from-the-pandemic titles, and host a lively conversation about its ideas and takeaways for congregational mission. There are…

Tech Works Conversations in June: Wednesdays at 7 p.m., beginning June 9

Starting June 9, the partnership will host a series of online conversations focused on congregations’ use of communications technology. Each session will begin with a presentation from a congregation currently using technology in new ways, such as providing live streaming or hybrid worship. Congregational leaders will offer practical details, sample videos and advice on purchasing and…

The World is Important: Bishop Sean’s Pentecost Sermon

“What makes Christianity and the incarnation powerful is that the world is important,” said Bishop Sean in his Day of Pentecost sermon. “We are, our bodies are; this isn’t something from which to escape. The kingdom of God about which Jesus speaks and about which the Advocate comes is the place where it happens. In…

Bishop Sean Rowe

Updated Reopening Guidelines (May 19)

Dear People of God in Western New York and Northwestern Pennsylvania: In the last two months, thanks to the increasing availability of effective vaccines against COVID-19, both cases and deaths have declined steadily across our region. Last week, the Centers for Disease Control relaxed its guidance for fully vaccinated people, and state and local authorities…

We Are Not Alone: A Sermon by the Rev. Canon Cathy Dempesy-Sims

“As we enter into this next phase of life as church … as we venture into the unfamiliar post-pandemic world where things really are brand new and unknown, we must remember that we are not alone,” said the Rev. Cathy Dempesy-Sims during her sermon for the Seventh Sunday of Easter.