Sharing Faith Dinners inspires thousands across the country

first_img TryTank Experimental Lab and York St. John University of England Launch Survey to Study the Impact of Covid-19 on the Episcopal Church TryTank Experimental Lab Rector Knoxville, TN Assistant/Associate Rector Morristown, NJ Priest-in-Charge Lebanon, OH Featured Events Inaugural Diocesan Feast Day Celebrating Juneteenth San Francisco, CA (and livestream) June 19 @ 2 p.m. PT Episcopal Charities of the Diocese of New York Hires Reverend Kevin W. VanHook, II as Executive Director Episcopal Charities of the Diocese of New York Director of Music Morristown, NJ Press Release Service Assistant/Associate Priest Scottsdale, AZ Rector Hopkinsville, KY Canon for Family Ministry Jackson, MS Bishop Diocesan Springfield, IL AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to PrintFriendlyPrintFriendlyShare to FacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterShare to EmailEmailShare to MoreAddThis Associate Priest for Pastoral Care New York, NY Associate Rector Columbus, GA Family Ministry Coordinator Baton Rouge, LA Submit a Press Release Rector Smithfield, NC An Evening with Presiding Bishop Curry and Iconographer Kelly Latimore Episcopal Migration Ministries via Zoom June 23 @ 6 p.m. ET Submit a Job Listing Rector Shreveport, LA Rector Washington, DC Join the Episcopal Diocese of Texas in Celebrating the Pauli Murray Feast Online Worship Service June 27 Virtual Celebration of the Jerusalem Princess Basma Center Zoom Conversation June 19 @ 12 p.m. ET The Church Pension Fund Invests $20 Million in Impact Investment Fund Designed to Preserve Workforce Housing Communities Nationwide Church Pension Group Rector/Priest in Charge (PT) Lisbon, ME Rector Collierville, TN Rector Bath, NC New Berrigan Book With Episcopal Roots Cascade Books Rector and Chaplain Eugene, OR In-person Retreat: Thanksgiving Trinity Retreat Center (West Cornwall, CT) Nov. 24-28 center_img Rector Martinsville, VA Episcopal Church releases new prayer book translations into Spanish and French, solicits feedback Episcopal Church Office of Public Affairs Seminary of the Southwest announces appointment of two new full time faculty members Seminary of the Southwest Curate (Associate & Priest-in-Charge) Traverse City, MI By Luke BlountPosted May 21, 2014 Sharing Faith Dinners inspires thousands across the country Curate Diocese of Nebraska Associate Rector for Family Ministries Anchorage, AK Missioner for Disaster Resilience Sacramento, CA Submit an Event Listing Rector Pittsburgh, PA An Evening with Aliya Cycon Playing the Oud Lancaster, PA (and streaming online) July 3 @ 7 p.m. ET Director of Administration & Finance Atlanta, GA Rector (FT or PT) Indian River, MI Ya no son extranjeros: Un diálogo acerca de inmigración Una conversación de Zoom June 22 @ 7 p.m. ET This Summer’s Anti-Racism Training Online Course (Diocese of New Jersey) June 18-July 16 Assistant/Associate Rector Washington, DC Featured Jobs & Calls Remember Holy Land Christians on Jerusalem Sunday, June 20 American Friends of the Episcopal Diocese of Jerusalem Rector Belleville, IL Youth Minister Lorton, VA The Church Investment Group Commends the Taskforce on the Theology of Money on its report, The Theology of Money and Investing as Doing Theology Church Investment Group Rector Tampa, FL Course Director Jerusalem, Israel Rector Albany, NY Priest Associate or Director of Adult Ministries Greenville, SC Photo: Diocese of Texas[Episcopal Diocese of Texas] Thousands of Episcopalians across the United States gathered in homes, restaurants and churches last Thursday, May 15, to share a meal and share stories of their faith. In the third year of Sharing Faith Dinners, the Dioceses of West Texas, Fort Worth, Northwest Texas, North Carolina and a few individual churches across the country and even Canada joined the Diocese of Texas for the annual event.Sharing Faith began in 2012, fashioned after Houston Interfaith Ministries’ Amazing Faith Dinners, where people of different faiths gather for a simple meal and to answer questions about their faith experiences. The Diocese of West Texas joined in 2013 and the idea continues to spread.“It’s funny that we have to plan an evening to talk to friends about our faith, but each time I’ve done Sharing Faith, it’s been a gift,” said Carol Barnwell, director of communications for the Diocese of Texas. “To enjoy the hospitality of people I may not know is always lovely. And to hear the very personal experiences of God from others is a humbling experience. Each time, I feel like I’ve received a gift and each story allows me to see God in a new way.”Photo: Diocese of TexasThe evening is designed to promote listening. A moderator provides guidance for the group, allowing each person to speak without interruption or crosstalk. Every year, participants share stories of great joy and pain, moments when they questioned their faith, and moments when they were affirmed in their beliefs. Friends often share tears and laughter as they learn about each other in a new, deeper way.At an event in Houston’s Montrose neighborhood, parishioners of St. Stephen’s and St. James’ Episcopal churches gathered at the home of Carvel Glenn and Randall Lamb. A dozen participants shared jambalaya around a table and then chose cards that prompted each person with a question.“It was a night of sharing heartfelt stories and everybody was feeling safe enough to feel vulnerable,” Lamb said in his distinctive southern drawl. “It’s like one of our dogs, Aretha. She loves to have her belly scratched, and she will flop on the ground to expose her belly to be scratched. I guess everyone was just sort of flopping and having their belly scratched.”Stephanie Davidson, a member of St. Stephen’s, attended her first Sharing Faith Dinner at the home of Lamb and Glenn. “I learned something from every single person there,” she said. “Normally I’m the kind of person that would interject, but the format really allowed me to listen and learn. I really felt God’s presence among us.”In North Carolina, organizers designed their own question cards and named the event “Go Speak! Sharing Your Faith” in order to coincide with a wider diocesan theme. On the night of the gatherings, tornado and flood watches were in effect for much of North Carolina, but it didn’t seem to hinder participation. More than 40 percent of churches in the Diocese of North Carolina joined the event.North Carolina’s communications coordinator, Summerlee Walter, said the feedback has been extremely positive, especially among smaller churches. “We have a lot of very small, rural churches,” she said. “A large percentage of those churches participated. It was really nice to have a diocesan event that didn’t require travel and allowed those smaller parishes to feel they were a part of the wider diocese.”In a video posted by the Diocese of North Carolina, participants talk about their experience immediately following their dinners. One participant, Reid Joyner, admitted he had little experience describing his faith, but the environment helped him share. “The questions were really helpful for this Episcopalian that doesn’t find it particularly easy to talk about his faith,” he said. “But telling my story was easy, and I was glad to do it.”In homes and churches, and other creative places, Episcopalians learned a great deal about each other as well as themselves through the simple act of sharing a meal and sharing their faith.The Sharing Faith Dinners tradition will continue to grow in Texas and beyond. Visit to learn more about the program. Or contact Carol Barnwell at [email protected] Episcopal Migration Ministries’ Virtual Prayer Vigil for World Refugee Day Facebook Live Prayer Vigil June 20 @ 7 p.m. ET Virtual Episcopal Latino Ministry Competency Course Online Course Aug. 9-13 Cathedral Dean Boise, IDlast_img read more

Read More »