Meeting of the Northwest Mission District
February 1, 2003 ­ St. Stephen's, Reno

This was a very successful and stimulating meeting with 51 participants from 5 parishes.
The program included four segments.

1. "How to tell the truth and deal with the consequences" or The impact of political and social issues on a parish. A panel presentation by Jim Jeffrey, Jim Edwards, and John Steinfeld followed by discussion.
2. A report of the recent meeting of the Diocesan Council by Shep Curtis of Coventry Cross.
3. An introduction to the General Convention to be held in Minneapolis, July 29 to August 8 by Larry Kirk, chair of the Nevada delegation.
4. Announcements of future Mission meetings and other events.

1."Speaking God's Truth With Love"
Some points to ponder on the presentation of alternative perspectives:

Approaching the pulpit with the Bible in one hand and the newspaper in the other.

Preaching God's love (the Good News) in the midst of turbulent times

Jesus did not "chew out" his followers. He told challenging stories and healed those that came to him.

"Who am I to be separating the sheep from the goats?" "Whom have I named as goats?"

Pastoral care vs. prophetic injunction.

The importance of caring and relationship in a parish.

The significance of the Episcopal structure which provides for bishops who may speak out more boldly because they do not have the closer pastoral responsibilities.

Sharing one's own faith journey.

From the congregation ­ conscious commitment to stay in the family with love and tolerance for the clergy. Sharing in the central core of the Anglican communion.

2. Recent Meeting of the Diocesan Council

Shep Cutis reported that the meeting had been a visioning and building experience leading to a new mission statement ­ The Episcopal Church of Nevada calls all people together to do God's work. The Council heard a report from a group studying the issue of locating the Episcopal church in Las Vegas. Diocesan budget issues were tabled until the March meeting. So far three parishes have been able to make additional contributions toward the Diocesan deficit.

3. Information on the 74th General Convention of the Episcopal Church in America

Larry Kirk provided a brief overview of the structure, representation and the issues for the coming convention in Minneapolis. Nevada will send four clergy deputies (the Reverends Olson, Tattersall, Heidecker and Henry) and four lay deputies (Larry Kirk, Sean Smith, Ginny Hastings and B.J. Cousins). The title deputy indicates that these are not delegates representing the diocese but rather deputies who will vote according to their own consciences. In addition, Sharon Scott will attend the Triennium Meeting of Episcopal Women.

Among the expected issues at the convention is the growing strength of the Anglican Church in Africa which with its more traditional views is drawing U.S. churches away from their own dioceses and possible revisions of the canons pertaining to locally trained and seminary trained clergy. Larry urged non-deputies to attend the convention at least once as it is an opportunity to see "the Episcopal Church at its best." For deputies it is a rigorous schedule of meetings for ten long days.

4. Future Meetings of the Northwest Mission and other events ­

The Northwest Mission will meet on Saturday, May 3 at Trinity Church in Reno and on Saturday, August 16 at Coventry Cross in Minden. Representatives from all parishes are invited to participate in planning for these meetings.

Bob Reed announced a Contemporary Music Workshop at St. Paul's, Sparks on Saturday, March 22 from 1 to 5 pm.

Ken Rackley announced a Teens Encounter Christ (TEC) weekend May 25-27 and a summer senior high mission trip to Mexico.

We are asked for our support and prayers when Bishop Katharine goes to visit a clinic in Kenya in March.

RAIN (Religious Alliance in Nevada) is sponsoring sessions this weekend to prepare for the 2003 legislative session.

St. Stephen's will hold a garage/rummage sale on April 26.