- The Program
Ye Olde Hermeneutic
“This is perhaps the most challenging task with which we have been charged. It is not so much about being a thorn in the church’s side or about making trouble (though we are often involved in both), it is, as Walter Brueggemann reflects in The Prophetic Imagination, about being both critical and analytical, as well as people who energize with hope.” Susanne Watson-Epting, Unexpected Consequences: The Diaconate Renewed, p.92.
News for the Weekend of January 28-29, 2017
(Written by Rod Dugliss, edited by Rebecca Morehouse)
Welcome All Our Guests to Community Night
This Saturday is the third of the school evenings with community Eucharist and dinner. I am sure you have let Rebecca know if you have guests who are planning to come.
The Changes and Chances of this Mortal Life
Apart from the endless string of faculty, students, friends and family who have come down with the winter 16-17 version of IT, (pause for endless coughing) we can say this is yet another issue with nothing to report in this category. Deo Gratias.
On Saturday March 11th we will host the annual Inquirers’ Day. This is a great opportunity for anyone who might be discerning a call to ordained ministry, or who might be serving on a Local Discernment Committee, to explore what the 21st century diaconate is all about and learn how the school works to help form persons for ordination to the Sacred Order of Deacons in The Episcopal Church.
People are invited to arrive at 8:30am to sign in so that we can begin at 9:00am when classes begin. There will be in conversation with the dean and others. We hope to answer all questions and to spark ongoing curiosity about this ministry that is so critical for church and world. We will end the morning with lunch and time for some one-on-one conversations—to which all students are invited. Our guests can sit in on an afternoon class if they wish.
Current students, recent graduates, deacons everywhere are the best discerners and encouragers of vocations to the future diaconate. Look about your sending congregation, your field education site, and any other parts of the gathered church and see if there are folk who need to be offered an invitation to Inquirer’s Day. Simple flyers are available in the office and online.
A Special Gift in Formation
Since the community last gathered at The Bishop’s Ranch, Donna Arellano and husband Hector have been with Bishop Beisner (and Bishop Greg Rickel of Olympia) in the Holy Land for an intense engagement and pilgrimage. A Holy Land pilgrimage has been part of the Diocese of Northern California’s process for the formation of deacons and priests for the past few years. Everyone who goes reports a life changing experience and awareness that they will never hear or preach on scripture the same after literally walking in the footsteps of apostles, prophets, martyrs, and Jesus himself. We look forward to hearing Donna’ story.
In the grey and green of a very wet winter we gathered at Bishop’s Ranch for the annual school for deacons’ retreat. We were enriched by the presence of three persons in local formation in the Diocese of San Joaquin. Your journalist for these periodic broadsheets would like personally to thank Sr. Pamela Clare CSF for her leadership in sharing the basics of Franciscan spirituality. Of the several monastic or cenobitic charisms, I think that the way of Francis is closest to the calling of the deacon. Sr. Pamela helped us all to see and somewhat experience that. I would think that some of the folk there, and perhaps some reading this in the outer reaches of the SFD community would consider taking on the discipline and community of becoming a Third Order Franciscan. Probably not while in study but once ordained if you think you have a Franciscan call I am sure Sr. Pamela, or the school deacon, Kate Salinaro (who is one) can tell you how to proceed with discerning a call to the third order.
As those who were presence know, one of the outcomes of the retreat was the creation of a Benedictus for The Ranch in the spirit of St. Francis. It is a lovely piece of work, and for the wider audience of this broadsheet, it is offered, below:
BENEDICITE RANCHO DEL OBISPO
Let all God’s works glorify the Creator, who is worthy to be praised and highly exalted for ever.
Wind and rain, God’s breath and tears, remind us of our waning years;dripping branches and running streams, glorify God, who is worthy to be praised and highly exalted for ever.
Endless cycles – spring to spring, gardens gift by stone to God do sing;the strength of rocks that surround the gentleness of gardenia beds, glorify God, who is worthy to be praised and highly exalted for ever.
Glorify God you elder tree, steadfast In praise, join with blossom new;Praise God most gentle camellia whose ruffled petals kiss the morning dew, glorify God, who is worthy to be praised and highly exalted for ever.
Praise God for sound and sight,for chirping birds and croaking frog. lowing cows in the green pasture whose fragrance floats on the air, glorify God, who is worthy to be praised and highly exalted for ever.
Blessed be the spiral maze that circles round in endless praise; Prayers on the wet serpentine stones of the labyrinth, glorify God, who is worthy to be praised and highly exalted for ever.
Every pathway and trail opening the wonders of God’s creation to us;every hiking trail and sign post leading to unknown places, glorify God, who is worthy to be praised and highly exalted for ever.
Let the canticles of tree frogs glorify God through the mist of fog floating through verdant fields and trees; All humming birds showing grace in winged power, glorify God, who is worthy to be praised and highly exalted for ever.
My Lord be praised by that magnificent sequoia of shady swaying branches holding our history in its ring;. All persimmon trees and grape vines, glorify God, who is worthy to be praised and highly exalted for ever.
Let God’s glory show through stacks of crackling logs bathed in fire that warms the heart and hearth; All you who share the fire’s cheery company in friendly community, glorify God, who is worthy to be praised and highly exalted for ever.
Ye cooks in the kitchen who nourish us with fruits of the earth; and hardy grounds keepers who prune and mow, glorify God, who is worthy to be praised and highly exalted for ever.
Let all God’s works glorify the Creator, Who is worthy to be praised and highly exalted for ever. .
Words to the Wise from Rebecca
Welcome to the beginning of the spring semester. Check your mail folders for grades and papers from last semester, as well as for an invoice for this one.
And a request for help: the class of 2016 gift to the school was a GoPro. As both Rod and I are not very savvy technology-wise, I’m hoping if I charge it up, one of you will know how to run it. We were assured that it is very simple. Bertram needs to have his sermon Saturday night recorded for his COM. There are many other opportunities to put it to good use in a variety of classes. Thanks!
Dates/Events of Note
The annual Archdeacons and Deacon [formation] Directors [or A3D] conference will meet in Atlanta this year from the 16th through the 19th of March. The dean is planning to attend. Brad Peterson hopes to attend some or all of the conference and then the annual meeting of the Board of the Association for Episcopal Deacons, which follows immediately.
The triennial Province VIII Deacons Conference will be NOVEMBER 10-12, 2017 in Las Vegas, NV hosted by the great deacon community in the Diocese of Nevada