Jesus said, ‘Abide in me as I abide in you. Just as the branch cannot bear fruit by itself unless it abides in the vine, neither can you unless you abide in me. I am the vine, you are the branches. Those who abide in me and I in them bear much fruit, because apart from me you can do nothing.
I write today, as your bishop, with a personal request.
Would you please join me in prayer for us, the people of the Episcopal Diocese of Washington, as we begin the discovery season of our strategic planning process, Becoming Good Soil?
On Saturday, March 16th, we will host our first regional discovery session for the congregations of North Prince George’s County. Two more sessions will follow later this month, on Thursday, March 28th, for the congregations of Central Montgomery County and on Saturday, March 30th for the congregations of North Washington, D.C. Other regions will have their gatherings in late April and early May.
I have asked that each congregation be represented by at least two leaders (more are always welcome), so that we might discern together how we might become good soil for the gospel seeds that God is already sowing all around us. We have leaders in each region now, working to bring us together for heartfelt conversation and joyful God-inspired dreaming. Please pray for them, and for all who will gather in these sessions. Consider being one of them–I would love to see you there.
In Sunday worship, many of you pray for me, your bishop, as you offer prayers for the church and the world. Thank you. I need your prayers, especially now, in this season of my episcopate, that I might be faithful to Jesus’ call and his way of love. In the context of the Lord’s Prayer, we ask that God’s Kingdom be realized on the earth, as it is in heaven. As you pray that prayer, please hold in your heart all in the Diocese of Washington, that we might be a people dedicated to God’s kingdom, and faithful to God’s will, not ours.
If the Episcopal Diocese of Washington is to become a compelling witness to Jesus’ way of love in this world, it will be through the grace of God, the redeeming love of Jesus, and the power of the Holy Spirit working in us, accomplishing far more than we can ask for or imagine. And it will be through our faithfulness and courage that we offer our best and imperfect selves to this good work.
Join us now in this time of discerning prayer, from which our future actions will flow. Thank you for your faithfulness. I pledge mine to you, and to our God.