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Thank You to ALL who participated throughout the course of our summer sessions!

If you didn’t get to attend our review session, please view the Rector’s review questions HERE.

Here’s what’s next for us:

  1. Continue to Learn
  2. Take Action
  3. Partner with the Diocese of Arizona
  4. Build relationships with Black, Indigenous, People of Color (BIPOC)
  5. Connect with our members already engaging in the work

Please read this document from The Episcopal Church:

Becoming Beloved Community – Where You Are

Please contact Rev. Jim if you would like to be involved in any of those 5 areas above!

Then click HERE to email him your thoughts or call 480-948-5560.

Session 1 Follow-Up

Gang! In all the excitement of being together, I forgot to press RECORD until after some introductory remarks were made. Luckily, we have Rev. Jim’s notes! Please read the notes and then pick up with the video recording from there! Thank you! Erika+

Starter Notes from before video picks up:

Frame & Thoughts for Listening to Seek and Serve Initiative

  1. A little history – for the first dozen years or so of my tenure, we held fast to “no politics” because too hard for it not to be heard as partisan. Divisiveness seemed to be everywhere and quickly asserting itself. So, we avoided politics and divisive topics.
    1. Instead, we urged, as disciples of Jesus, active involvement in service and in society, which included government, and we avoided divisive topics
    2. Throughout those years, I repeatedly heard the requests for “engagement” not to be requests for engagement but requests for “broadcasting,” which does not put two people in the conversation/equation. More on this below.
    3. We wanted to nurture a place of peace, of respite from the contentiousness, and strength from which to be sent.
  2. When the time seemed right, we launched our Listening Initiative. In a nutshell, we defined the goal of listening as having the other person feel understood. More on this in a bit.
  3. Recent events have urged us to engage the issue of racism in our country.
    1. These events have been so dramatic and painful and pressing that not to engage them seems … “wrong.”
    2. Our Presiding Bishop has urged us to engage racism
    3. Our Arizona Bishop is leading our diocese in engaging racism.
  4. At the heart of my leadership decision to avoid partisan, divisive topics, has been the vision and intention to nurture a culture where all are welcome. Profoundly welcome. Where all feel seen and heard and invited and wanted. At the heart of this culture is the vision of the unity of the whole human family or one human family.
  5. There comes a point, however, in which unity without conversation, including the difficult conversations, is not unity. I’m not sure what it is, but it’s not unity.
    1. Real unity, profound unity, is harmony. The harmony of many voices, experiences, and perspectives melded into a beautiful whole.
    2. Eventually, if you can’t talk about what matters, then you won’t matter. You’ll find yourself sitting on the sidelines. Bored and boring! See diagram & description below it. (Click image for larger view)


(Diagram references that relationship seeks to communicate about most everything. There will be a few things on the outskirts that perhaps we cannot discuss with a friend/loved one, but generally we can discuss the majority (upper image). The lower image illustrates the problem when we have too many things we cannot discuss and very few things we can overlap on/communicate about. There’s no fullness of relationship in the lower image.)

  1. I don’t think we have been on the sidelines in our life together at Saint Barnabas. I think we have nurtured a vibrant community alive with the Spirit. Inspired and equipped in prayer and spirituality and in service and mission … and more …
  2. I think the time has come for that vitality to take the next step. Frankly, I believe Jesus wants us and the world needs us in the arena. Not on the sidelines.
    1. Be that as it may, we need not to be on the sidelines.
  3. The emphasis on unity does not change:
    1. Jesus: “That they all may be one.”
    2. St. Paul: “making every effort to preserve the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace”
    3. The BCP: “The mission of the church is to restore all people to unity with God and each other in Christ.”
    4. The Incarnation affirms the whole human family.
    5. If how we do what we do divides us, we have lost from the beginning.
      1. Perhaps “Love your enemies” could be an ever-present guide?
      2. Social media … I intend not to meddle – what do you really want?
        1. A “broadcast” platform? Not an “engagement” platform?

And then the video picks up!


The Original Invitation From the Rector


The start of this new piece of our work together will be a 6-week group series featuring videos on Spirituality and Racial Justice by our own Presiding Bishop, The Most Rev. Michael Curry. These brief thought-provoking videos will launch us into conversations with each other in small groups via Zoom.