FROM THE EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR
Province 1 has a strong reputation for assuming leadership in the Episcopal Church. I am pleased to be called to serve as the latest in a long line of able Executive Directors: Gene Robinson, Ran Chase, Susan Ohlidah, and Sarah Dylan Bruer.
While there are many places online that you can learn a bit about me (check out AboutMe and LinkedIn), I hope we will have the opportunity to meet. I want to hear your understanding of The Dream of God and look forward to working together in response to God's call.
My gifts are as an educator, communicator, and facilitator. I have been blessed with a love of connecting people and resources and engaging in processes that cultivate wisdom sharing. More often than not, this allows me to help turn visions into reality. I want to learn of your hopes so that we can continue building on the Province's rich legacy. I am convinced that God's Mission, which may seem impossible and feel overwhelming when we think of doing it alone, is possible when we remember our abundance and work together.
The Province hosted a series of listening sessions in the spring of 2013 to listen to the Spirit and recognize the small voice of God in our midst. We - local community leaders, diocesan staff, and provincial delegates - gathered around themes of New Models of Church, Faith Formation, Young Adults and Communications. We recalled the rich history of the province, identified our longings and resources, and recognized that the provincial network structure was no longer effective. Using the story of the disciples on the road to Emmaus, we feel we were being called to see things in new ways and to try new practices. Detailed records of these events were shared (and are available to those who request them) with the province's delegates and bishops before the May 2013 Synod. After prayerful review, the Synod identified three priorities for the Province:
serve as a resource (Exec Dir’s expertise, seed money, Adobe Connect, etc.) and facilitate collaboration by connecting those identifying specific needs with those with desired resources,
provide a prophetic voice and inspire social witness/action, and
support those who are developing/continuing communities of practice. Our Province has a history of working closely and well together, creating new initiatives and offering them not only to our own dioceses but also to the Church at large.
We believe that there are things we can do better together rather than separately. Communication will be an important element of this! Provincial delegates (one lay and one clergy representative for each diocese) are available to assist you locally and meet with me regularly. In addition to sharing information about initiatives and events in their dioceses, delegates will "see what is rising" and identify appropriate ways for the province to offer support, facilitate relationships, encourage collaborations and/or provide leadership. The Province's Executive Committee (President, Vice President, Treasurer, and Executive Director) meet monthly to evaluate current efforts and initiate new ones in response to identified needs. We will also be planning opportunities for us to physically gather - in our homes, our congregations, our dioceses, and our Province. Keep watching the website home page to learn more.
Please let me know if there are ways your Province can help you better serve God's Mission.
Julie Lytle, PhD