dear friend, - episcopal relief & .dear friend, the season of lent ... to guide our efforts and help
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The season of Lent provides a unique opportunity for us to embark on a journey toward an encounter with the risen Christ. As we turn toward a more intentional spiritual focus in our lives this season, we have a renewed opportunity to encounter Christ in all persons, loving our neighbors as ourselves.
In this eleventh edition of Episcopal Relief & Developments Lenten Meditations, we invited a group of leaders from across the Anglican Communion to reflect on their favorite scriptures and other sources of spiritual wisdom as they consider their own work to strengthen communities and provide economic opportunities. We asked these leaders to focus particularly on the important roles of women running small businesses or earning incomes to support their families. This promotes self-sufficiency and encourages women to become active and vocal members of their communities.
It is our hope that the 2014 Lenten Meditations will bring the risen Christ into our awareness each day and help us to prayerfully fulfill Gods call in our lives to heal a hurting world.
Sincerely in Christ,
Robert W. RadtkePresidentEpiscopal Relief & Development
Episcopal Relief & Development is the international relief and development agency of The Episcopal Church and an independent 501(c)(3) organization. The agency takes its mandate from Jesus words found in Matthew 25. Its programs work toward achieving the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). Episcopal Relief & Development works closely with the worldwide church and ecumenical partners to help rebuild after disasters and to empower local communities to find lasting solutions that fight poverty, hunger and disease, including HIV/AIDS and malaria.
Episcopal Relief & Development collaborates with Anglican churches and local organizations in nearly forty countries around the world.
We support programs in the following areas:
Episcopal Relief & Development uses the MDGs as a framework to guide our efforts and help us measure our impact. All of our programs work to achieve one or more of the eight MDG goals:
1. Eradicate extreme poverty and hunger
2. Achieve universal primary education for children
3. Promote gender equality and empower women
4. Reduce child mortality
5. Improve maternal health
6. Combat HIV/AIDS, malaria and other diseases
7. Ensure environmental sustainability
8. Create a global partnership for development
Dmaris Albuquerque is Executive Director of the Council of Protestant Churches of Nicaragua (CEPAD).
Chad Brinkman is the Associate for Engagement at Episcopal Relief & Development.
The Very Rev. Sam Candler is Dean of The Cathedral of St. Philip in Atlanta, Georgia.
The Rev. Rachel Carnegie is the Archbishop of Canterburys Secretary for International Development.
The Rev. Laura Darling is the Managing Director of Confirm not Conform. In 2008, she worked as a Kiva Fellow with microfinance institutions in Kampala, Uganda.
Sara DelaneyisanInternationalProgramOfficerforEpiscopalRelief & Development.
The Rt. Rev. Moses Deng Bol is Bishop of the Diocese of Wau, South Sudan.
Robin Denney served as an Episcopal missionary in Liberia and South Sudan.
Miguel Angel Escobar is a Program Director for the Episcopal Church Foundation whose primary responsibilities include Vital Practices, Fellowship Partners Program, and other Leadership Resources programs.
The Rev. Scott Gunn is Executive Director of Forward Movement.
The Rev. Canon Rosa Lee Harden is Canon for Money and Meaning at the Cathedral of All Souls in Asheville, North Carolina, and also produces conferences that bring together the ideas of money and faith in traditional financial markets.
The Most Rev. Katharine Jefferts Schori is Presiding Bishop of The Episcopal Church.
Sister Claire Joy is a member of the Community of the Holy Spirit and Chaplain to the staff of Episcopal Relief & Development.
Sean McConnell is Director of Engagement for Episcopal Relief & Development.
The Rev. Mary Moreno Richardson is the founder of The Guadalupe Art Program and a priest in the Diocese of California.
Judith Morrison is a member of the Board of Directors of Episcopal Relief & Development and has worked in international development for almost twenty years.
Abagail Nelson is Senior Vice President for Programs at Episcopal Relief & Development.
The Rev. Deacon Judy Quick is Episcopal Relief & Developments Diocesan Coordinator in the Diocese of Alabama.
Robert W. Radtke is President of Episcopal Relief & Development.
The Rev. Canon C. K. (Chuck) Robertson is Canon to the Presiding Bishop of The Episcopal Church.
The Rev. Ema Rosero-Nordalm is Missioner for Latino/Hispanic Ministries in the Diocese of Massachusetts and deacon at St. Stephens, Boston.
The Rev. Connie Snchez is Director of the Anglican Development Agency for the Diocese of Honduras.
Brian Sellers-Petersen is Senior Advisor to the President of Episcopal Relief & Development.
Mary Stuart Smart was selected as a fellow to join Episcopal Relief & Developments 2013 Ghana pilgrimage, and is a student at Sewanee: The University of the South.
The Rev. Canon Stephanie Spellers is Canon for Missional Vitality in the Diocese of Long Island.
Jenny Te Paa Daniel is a teacher, writer, speaker and public theologian in the Anglican Church in Aotearoa, New Zealand and Polynesia.
Richelle Thompson is Managing Editor for Forward Movement.
Jackie VanderBrug is a Senior Vice President at U.S. Trust and a leader in the movement to incorporate a gender lens in investments.
Jos Zrate is the Coordinator for Indigenous Communities and Latin America and Caribbean Development Program for The Primates World Relief and Development Fund of the Anglican Church of Canada.
Helen Zhao is Deputy Director of the Project Management Center for The Amity Foundation, an independent Chinese voluntary organization.
Scripture quotations are from the New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyrighted 1989 by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of Churches of Christ in the USA and used by permission. Psalm passages are from the Psalter in The Book of Common Prayer.
Cover photo courtesy of Episcopal Relief & Development and Harvey Wang for Episcopal Relief & Development.
2014 Episcopal Relief & DevelopmentAll rights reserved.
Ash WednesdAy, MArch 5
We have not loved you with our
whole heart, and mind, and strength.
We have not loved our neighbors as ourselves.
The Book of Common Prayer, p. 267
Loving our neighbor can look like ensuring her ability to feed herself and her family. Jesus fed people, and that feeding is still central to how we remember and become his body in the world today. Poor womenin his day and our ownoften depend on male relatives for their livelihoods. Microfinance, growing food more effectively and developing agricultural and market cooperatives are important tools that help the poor increase their ability to feed themselves and their children. That kind of development also brings dignity, as women find agency and become more effective partners in decision-making. Agency is an image of Gods presence and action in the world.
Lent invites us to reflect on loving God and neighbor and to examine our own actions and inactions. Prayer, study, fasting and giving alms are traditional ways to observe this seasonand all are avenues to loving more fullywith heart, mind, strength and substance. How will I live and love differently this Lent? How will I become Gods agent and help others to do the same?
Create in me a clean heart, O God,
and renew a right spirit within me.
The Most Rev. Katharine Jefferts Schori
thursdAy, MArch 6
All these things my hand has made, and so all these things
are mine, says the Lord. But this is the one to whom I will
look, to the humble and contrite in spirit, who trembles at
OverandoverintheBible,Godcallstotheoutsiders,thosewhomthe community or the world has marginalized: Sarah, the barren elder woman, has a child, Isaac; Ruth, the foreigner, mothers the Davidic dynasty; Moses, the adopted Egyptian, encounters God while fleeing as a murderer and returns a guide and a leader. Christ Jesus walks with prostitutes, parties with tax collectors, and heals the blind and the lame.
For those who have been consistently ignored, marginalized and even forgotten by the world, the idea that God might choose the lowly to be heard, to be noticed, to be preferred is something that bursts into reality like a gift, a possibility for transformation. God does not choose the poor in order for them to remain quiescent in their secret preferred state. Scripture instead shows us that the Samaritans, the prostitutes, the exiled are called to act out Gods love in faith in the world, and in so doing, become the leaders we all wait for.
In our programs at Episcopal Relief & Development, we seek to emulate our Lord by listening to those who are often marginalized in places around the world, and to honor the gifts they bring to the table, to build their own savings banks, to carry their own mosquito