Growing Inward and Outward: The May 2024 Communiqué

May 16, 2024
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The Flourishing Church: Healthy Community

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“Why are we doing this again, Rhonda?”
“It will be fine, John. Remember that Sophia, the nice lady from work, invited us. She has been so kind to me since Dad died. We really need to do this for both us and the kids.”
“But of all the churches – Anglican? I mean I looked online and I am not sure that we fit their ‘mold’ if you know what I mean.”
“Just give it a try.… I promise we will get home in time for the football game!”

And with this conversation as the background, one that is full of trepidation and uncertainty, John and Rhonda now walk into your church on Sunday morning. How will they be greeted? How will they understand the intricacies of Anglican liturgy? How will they be “welcomed again” after they leave the Sunday morning service?

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Proclaiming Christ Clearly into the Deaf World

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In the early 1990s, another deaf adult male leader and I took six deaf teenage boys to a Young Life camp. In a small group discussion, I mentioned, “God knows your heart. He knows sign language.” One of the students blurted out, “No! God cannot sign! He is a hearing God!” I was shocked. Can you imagine the loneliness of believing that not even God understands your heart language?
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Spiritual Direction: What is it?

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By the Rev. Mark DiCristina

The Gulf Atlantic Diocese is preparing to launch a new network for spiritual directors. Why? And what is spiritual direction? Among many excellent descriptions of spiritual direction, I’ll share one from David Benner in Sacred Companions: “In its classical form, spiritual direction is a one-on-one relationship organized around prayer and conversation directed toward deepening intimacy with God. [Spiritual directors] journey with others, who, like themselves, are committed to the process of spiritual transformation in Christ. And most important, they seek to help those with whom they journey discern the presence and leading of the Spirit of God – the One Jesus sent as our true Spiritual Director.” Spiritual direction is different from pastoral counseling and psychotherapy …

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Upcoming Events

You can view all upcoming diocesan events on our Events page.

Save the Dates: Synod 2024 and 2025

By the Grace of God and with the consent of the People THE RIGHT REVEREND CHARLES ALEXANDER FARMER will ordain KATIE LEBHAR BLACK-BOWLING to the Sacred Order of Deacons in Christ's One Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church May 26, 2024 at 5:00 p.m. Church of the Redeemer 8669 Baypine Road Jacksonville, Florida Your prayers and presence are requested

By the Grace of God and with the consent of the People the Right Reverend Charles Alexander Farmer will ordain Stefanie Kreamer to the Sacred Order of Deacons in Christ's One Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church June 2, 2024 at 5:00 p.m. Incarnation Tallahasee 1609 Branch Street Tallahassee, Florida Your prayers and presence are requested. Reception to follow. Clergy: Red Stoles.

Sacred Mental Health : May 19–21

The mental health crisis in our nation is breaking in like a flood, but our diocese has a response: Sacred Mental Health. This ministry is being developed as a way to bring the unique gift of God’s transforming grace through Jesus Christ into the dark places of mental and emotional suffering. The next Sacred Mental Health Level One Retreat is May 19-21 at Christchurch in Montgomery, AL. This retreat is an opportunity for you and members of your congregation to: Learn how God works within our brains, minds, and spirits; to learn practices that can turn darkness and suffering into sacred places where we meet God; do personal “soul work” to grow in relationship with God; and enjoy a time of rest, refreshment, and contemplation. Click to learn more.

Camp Araminta

The Camp Araminta 2024 registration for campers and application for leaders are now live! Quick facts:
    • Araminta 2024 will be held July 22-27 at Lake Swan Camp in Melrose
    • Camper age is rising 4th -12th grades
    • Cost per camper: $525
    • Students may apply for leadership beginning in 10th grade with Flight Crew. Cost for LITs (Leaders-in-Training under 18): $396
    • Counselors and other adult volunteers needed!
Hope to see you this summer!

Soul in the City

Soul in the City registration is also live! SitC is empowering teenagers to live a life of service to God and neighbor through the love of Christ. It's a week-long overnight summer camp where rising 7th - 12th grade students physically and relationally invest in the local community with their time and talents by being the hands and feet of Jesus. During this action-packed week, students live on the Grace Anglican Church campus in a mission-styled setting. Students serve during the day at various mission sites, have fun with friends, and gather at the Barn in the evening for worship, teaching, and small group discussion.

Anglican Fourth Day (A4D)

The Anglican Fourth Day (A4D) scheduled for this Spring has been postponed.


This month’s edition features articles about exciting growth — inward and outward — in our Diocese.