July 6, 2009
To: St. Peter’s Parish Family
From: Fr. Eric Dudley
Concerning: Our new Anglican Province and our new building
As we are all running from place to place this summer, I want to make sure we’re staying up to date with the life of the Church. Let me quickly hold before you two important items:
A. Establishment of a new Province: As you know I was in Texas last week with our Junior Warden, Dewitt Miller, attending the First General ssembly of the Anglican Church in North America. This was an historic event, establishing as a reality the Province we’ve been praying for over the last four years! This means that St. Peter’s is no longer under the Province of Uganda, but now in our own Province in North America (the US combined with Canada). We will continue to be in an on-going missional relationship with our friends in Uganda, and forever grateful for their support of us during this transition (Bp. Nzerebende will be with us this fall, giving us the opportunity to thank him personally). But now we have our own Archbishop, Robert Duncan (Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania), and will soon have our own local bishop. On August 29th our Diocese-in-formation will meet together in Dowling Park to ratify our constitution and canons (thus establishing us as a diocese), and elect a bishop. So far, three names have been submitted as potential candidates for bishop: Jim Hobby (Trinity Church, Thomasville), Neil Lebhar (Redeemer Church, Jacksonville), and Jim Hampson (St. Peter’s). These are exciting possibilities, and I hope you’ll pray for God’s will and guidance. The Vestry has selected six delegates from St. Peter’s who will accompany our priests for this first convention. Once a bishop is elected, he will have to be confirmed by the House of Bishops (all the bishops who are currently a part of this new Province, like Bishop Guernsey), and then consecrated as a bishop probably some time early next year.
B. The New Building: At this moment we have just over 5.5 million dollars pledged to the new church building. Only 63 parish families have not yet pledged (out of a total of 440 parish families). The Vestry and Building Committee feel that the strength of this commitment is great enough for us to begin to step forward. While the goal is still 8 million, we believe that we can at least begin to flesh out our plans and to put in place those pieces of site development that are affordable at this juncture. As we begin to do preliminary work over the next ten months, we will continue to try to raise the additional money that is needed. We will also consider what things we might need to cut out of the design to accommodate the budgeted dollars we have. We will keep the congregation informed of these decisions all along the way. The sooner cash flows into the Building Fund, the sooner we are able to begin to lay a foundation for this new church. If at any time you are able to increase your pledge, or give additional monies from an unforeseen bonus, it would greatly help our effort. We are very excited about the future, and enormously grateful for the support this congregation has put forth. Please pray for the leadership of our parish as we work together to make the best decisions we can for our future.
Prayer for the Building of St. Peter's Anglican Church
Almighty God and Father,
The Heavens cannot contain you, yet you are pleased to dwell in our midst. Accept our desire to build for you a dwelling place to the honor of your Name and for the benefit of your people.
We have journeyed into this wilderness to build our future on the solid rock of the Gospel of Christ. We depend fully on your guidance, inspiration, and grace in building a church that will be a symbol of your Presence, a vessel of your Truth, and a witness to your Love from generation to generation.
Bless our efforts, O Lord! Through them, may those who have ears to hear know the good News of Jesus Christ our Savior. We offer this prayer to you, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Amen.
As Jesus was walking beside the Sea of Galilee, he saw two brothers, Simon called Peter and his brother, Andrew. They were casting a net into the lake, for they were fishermen. "Come, follow me," Jesus said "and I will make you fishers of men." At once they left their nets and followed him. (Matthew 4:18-19)
Jesus said, "Take courage. Don't be afraid." Then Peter got down out of the boat, walked on the water and came toward Jesus. (Matthew 14:27,29)
4784 Thomasville Rd., Tallahassee, Florida 32309 (Directions)
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