Lenten Series begins Feb. 11

During Lent this year Martha Liska will facilitate an opportunity to focus on the topic of social justice.  Participants will use the book, The Social Justice Bible Challenge, as a Lenten discipline of Bible reading and meditation. 
For more information see the information see the Learn and Grow tab on the website Home page or click HERE
The Sunday “classes” will begin on Sunday, February 11th and continue for seven weeks ending on Sunday, March 25th, Palm Sunday.  Sign up sheets are in the hallway.  

Immigrant Stories of Olympia

CIELO and Immigrant Stories of Olympia with Charo Garcia de Portaro from St John's Olympia

Wednesday, October 18, 2017
7:30 PM - 8:45 pm
Olympia Timberland Library 

Charo Garcia de Portaro will share her own story of immigration to the Olympia community and talk about her work with CIELO Programs. CIELO, Integral Latino Educational Center of Olympia, promotes community, self-sufficiency and leadership of Latin@s and other underserved people in the South Puget Sound area with educational and mental health services, and social and cultural activities. This program is co-sponsored by the Hispanic Roundtable of South Sound. Spanish interpretation will be available. 

A New Vicar!


Dear St. Benedict’s Community, 

I’m writing you with great joy as I officially announce the end of our process to call a new vicar! I give great thanks to our Search Committee members who worked tirelessly through two rounds of searching to find the right person to be the spiritual leader for our next chapter. And it’s with greater delight that I tell you that I didn’t even have to dial long distance to “make the call,” as the candidate brought to the Bishop’s Committee was our own Father Ed Lovelady. 

I know we’ll be hearing from Father Ed about his discernment process and why he put himself forth for our consideration. But I can tell you that it started after last Holy Week when he was moved by the Holy Spirit to continue his ministry with us if it were God’s will. As for the rest of the story, you’ll have to hear from Father Ed… 

We have much to celebrate! In the coming weeks, our liturgy will celebrate and thank the work of the Search Committee and will recognize Father Ed’s transition from interim vicar to a permanent position. Please join me in thanking our fellow congregants for their work and in welcoming Father Ed and Debbie truly home among us. 

Dan Renfroe,
Vicar’s Warden

Fr. Ed's Response to the call as Vicar

I am honored and humbled to accept your call as permanent Vicar.  I want to congratulate the search committee for their dedication to their task.  Please take the time to offer your personal thanks to them.  We will recognize and give thanks for their work in worship soon.
It may surprise you that I was a candidate for the position, especially since you’ve heard me say many times that I was not interested in the permanent job.  I believed that myself, until Holy Week and Easter.  After that time with you during our most holy and busy season, I (and my wife agreed) decided that I ought to “toss my hat in the ring.” With Bishop Greg’s approval, I became one of the three candidates approved by +Greg for consideration.  I’d like to say that my decision was guided by God’s Holy Spirit, but I don’t want to claim that kind of “inside information.” I do trust that the Holy Spirit will be with me, with you, and with us as we move forward, responding to God’s call to be “The hands of Christ in the heart of Lacey.”
My job description and time commitment remain much the same, other than the “Interim” in my job title going away.  I believe we have developed a good relationship and look forward to continuing the work we have begun and dealing with the “when the new vicar comes” issues.  Our finances are strong. We are moving forward in developing a stewardship team to guide our stewardship ministry for the fall and into the new year.  Children's ministries are going strong for the fall season.  Our musicians and “drop-in” choir provide great musical leadership for worship.  We continue to see new faces in worship and fellowship and have added some new members over the summer months.  Our many ministries continue with strong leadership and good participation. 
I continue to be available for pastoral care whenever it is needed and will keep regular office hours on Wednesday mornings and am often at the church on Saturday mornings.  My primary contact is my cell phone: 360.870.1649 or email: vicar@sbechurch.org
I am thankful for the opportunity to continue in ministry with you and I look forward to our celebration of new ministry with our bishop in the near future.
In our time together over the past 15 months we have grown to know each other, but If you are interested, you can find a short biography and my resume online through these links
BIOGRAPHY                 RESUME
Blessings,  Fr. Ed


Honoring Volunteers in our St B Community

St Benedict Episcopal Church honors all those members who volunteer their time to make our community strong

·      Monthly provide community dinner – mostly Oxford House attendees but open to homeless,. 3-4 church members are involved in this

·      4 SBC members volunteer as overnight hosts at the Sacred Heart (next door) men’s shelter.  Several shifts Nov-March.

·      Two members are SBC delegates to InterFaith Works and report back to the congregation

·      One member reports regularly on his participation in Jail Ministry.  Congregation participates in cookie and sock campaigns during the yr

·      SBC does have an Earth Ministry

·      Several members chair Easter Baskets for homeless children and the congregation is generous in providing dozens of baskets

·      Participated in the Pride Parade in the past.

·      Individual members participated in the Women’s March this yr

·      One member  is lead on  gathering of hundreds of calendars for SeaFarers ministry

·      One member is lead on gathering of volunteers to participate as part of a veterans event in the summer.

·      Individual church members belong to or participate in various nonprofit organizations as individuals, not representing SBC.

·      One member isactive in promoting communication, safety and peace in the Gaza Strip

·      Current Vicar involved in ministry in the Philippines

BEYOND THE WALLS: Strengthening Sanctuary

  The following article is adapted from the April issue of St. John’s The Chronicle. In recent months, with the increased focus on immigrant deportation, this has introduced higher levels of uncertainty for many local immigrant families. As a result, at least two groups, Interfaith Works Social Justice Subcommittee and Strengthening Sanctuary Support Group, have begun to look at how faith communities might provide some support to those families. This article is an excellent overview of the issue.

BEYOND THE WALLS:  Strengthening Sanctuary

By Sherry Sullivan
The Strengthening Sanctuary Group started with 7 or 8 concerned members of the local community meeting at CIELO ( this is a local nonprofit which provides services to new immigrants)  in late January to explore the following questions: 

What does it mean for Olympia to be a "Sanctuary City?" 
How can we support immigrants in our community whose lives are impacted by the President's Executive Order and the rapidly developing political scene? 
With each successive meeting the Sanctuary group's numbers grew (it now has over 50 members), and subgroups formed to explore the diverse issues that emerged as we began to answer these basic questions. Two inter-related subgroups emerged first to take the following actions: 

1) Hold "Know Your Rights Workshops," for Spanish-speaking immigrants, facilitated by an immigration attorney and based on the 4th amendment of the Constitution (which declares that everyone living in this country--regardless of immigrat status--has the right to remain silent when questioned by legal authorities).

2) Help families fill out and notarize a "Family Safety Plan" document, drawn up by a group of lawyer allies (LCYC) in Seattle, which names a caregiver (with legal status) for their children in case a parent is sent to detention and deported. Bilingual persons are trained to offer this help. 

These support opportunities are now taking place throughout the South Sound (as well as nationally) --including at St John's, at other churches with Spanish-speaking members, at schools, and at CIELO.

Other subgroups involve research and actions to build and sustain support for affected immigrants within our larger community, focusing on these issues:

·      Learning about law enforcement practices and policy through dialogues with city, county, and state enforcement;

·      Forming emergency first-response networks of people willing to observe and record ICE presence and arrests;

·      Networking with faith communities, including Interfaith Works;

·      Tracking the legislative actions that impact immigrant rights; and

·      Working with high school students to support their outreach, advocacy and organizing activities.

Strengthening Sanctuary is still questioning, exploring, and connecting with like-minded groups throughout the region and the country. You are welcome to attend a meeting and listen for more understanding, or join a group that best fits your interests and abilities. 

Concluding Note: At St. Benedicts, there will be a series of opportunities, in June, between the two services to hear more about CIELO, the issues facing immigrants, and the work of the faith communities who are exploring where and how they might support this work. The schedule will be announced.  KBF