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Becoming God's New Thing: Fourth Edition

Perceiving and cooperating with the good things God "is getting up to" in and around our parish.

Do not remember the former things, or consider the things of old. I am about to do a new thing; now it springs forth, do you see it? I will make a way in the wilderness and rivers in the desert. Isaiah 43:18-19

The Episcopal Diocese of Olympia Elects

The Rev. Phil LaBelle as Its Ninth Bishop

The Episcopal Diocese of Olympia has elected the Rev. Phil N. LaBelle as its next bishop. Bishop-Elect LaBelle currently serves as rector of St. Mark’s Church in Southborough, Massachusetts. While in the Diocese of Massachusetts, he co-led the Mission Strategy Committee, served on the Executive Committee and Diocesan Council, and directed the Fresh Start program. Bishop-Elect LaBelle will be consecrated and installed as the ninth bishop of Olympia on September 14, succeeding Bishop Greg Rickel, who resigned on December 31, 2022, and Bishop Provisional Melissa Skelton, who serves in the interim.


Karin Ruble, Lupe Reyes, Connie Smith, and Karen Sjostrom represented Saint John’s as electing delegates. Karen and Connie Lightbody were also electing delegates by virtue of their membership on the Diocesan Council (Karen) and the Standing Committee of the Diocese (Connie).   


Saint John's Parish and City of Kirkland Forge

Closer Ties to Combat Homelessness  

In a spirit of shared compassion and commitment to our community, Saint John's Parish and the City of Kirkland have developed a robust working relationship o address the pressing issue of homelessness. This collaboration, rooted in a deepening awareness of the struggles faced by our unhoused neighbors, has already led to tangible actions and a renewed sense of hope.

Working Together for Change

Over recent months, Saint John's has been actively engaged with City of Kirkland staff who work directly with individuals experiencing homelessness. This has led to a variety of collaborative efforts, including:

Presentations and Dialogue: Ted Ederer and Bob McConnell facilitated a presentation to the Men's Group by Jen Boone, the City's Human Services Manager, and Meli Paulo, the Homeless Outreach Coordinator. This provided valuable insights into the complexities of homelessness.

Direct Support: Through the coordinated efforts of parishioners and staff, Saint John's helped a vulnerable senior and her son access vital resources, including a King County program for indigent seniors.

Fundraising Efforts: Ted Ederer generously donated art for sale, with proceeds benefiting the Baker Homeless Fund.

Hosting Events: Saint John’s has been sponsoring meetings and events in Marsh Hall for Livable Kirkland, a community non-profit working to address affordable housing issues on the Eastside.

Financial Assistance: Saint John's provided funds through the Rector's Discretionary Account to help a blind woman secure temporary housing while her public housing apartment was being prepared.

A Deeper Commitment

Recently, the City’s Homeless Outreach Coordinator, Meli Paulo, approached Saint John’s to help a Kirkland family avoid homelessness by supporting their relocation within Kirkland to a smaller, less costly apartment.  Remaining in Kirkland was essential for the family’s stability, as one of the children is significantly autistic and has been flourishing in school and accepted by his classmates. 

After consulting with Bob McConnell, Ted Ederer, Gary and Sandi Rose (all of whom have taken an active interest in the Baker Fund’s utilization), the Vestry unanimously approved up to $4,000 to be deployed to support this family’s relocation. 

Looking Ahead: A Ministry of Compassion, Action, and Justice

In the coming months, Saint John's Vestry will engage the parish in forming a ministry dedicated to addressing homelessness through direct aid and a deeper exploration of the individual, societal, and economic factors contributing to this complex issue.

Your participation and input are essential as we seek to embody Christ's love for all by working together to create a more just and compassionate community.

Thank you, and may God bless you!


Postscript:  This will be the "good-enough" post. There will be times when I won't have the benefit of a good copy editor, and I am slightly dyslexic, so I won't likely catch many mistakes. You may find this off-putting. I find it mildly embarrassing. We'll get through it together. M+

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