ADNE P. O. Box 440 Amesbury, MA 01913 (978) 388-0009 www.anglicandiocesene.

org

December 1, 2010
Dear Friends in Christ, Our second synod of the Anglican Diocese in New England was a great success! As we relived the highlights of our 2009/2010 year, we rejoiced in the unity we saw demonstrated in the events this year:       the blessings of new ordinations in December and June, nine new deacons and priests with the number of clergy nearly doubling reception of six new churches and missions hosting the Provincial Council of the Anglican Church of North America (ACNA) and the College of Bishops in June the recognition of our New England Diocese and our bishop seated in the first service of investiture in the new province. successful conference on Evangelism (Catch the Fire) in September representation at the 3rd Lausanne Congress on Global Evangelism in Cape Town South Africa (check out our website under News/Cape Town 2010 Highlights).

In looking ahead, we brought our mission into sharper focus by agreeing to put our best resources into strategic places of ministry development. We asked two questions, what business are we in? And how is business? We agreed we are in the business of discipleship (Matthew 28:19 -20) together. Ours is an essential partnership in mission in New England as Anglican Christians. The Focus on Discipleship: We recognize that the church does a lot of different things, but the basic building block of a new diocese on mission is discipleship. It is the required focus for us if we are to reach New England with the transforming love of Jesus Christ. Discipleship is accomplished when we have trained a believer in the basic skills and practices of the historic orthodox Christian faith and they have trained another in the same. (IITim.2:2) We are committed to do this together by pursuing the following priorities of mission together. The Priorities:  Training all clergy and lay leaders in the same approach to disciple making each year.  Creating a partnership for mission between all diocesan churches and missions  Completing a Mission Partners Fund that will be an immediate cash resource for new church starts and an emergency cash reserve for the diocese The Plan: To implement this mission of “disciple making”, we are committed to training all new deacons and as many clergy and lay leaders as we can, in the process of leading disciple making small groups on January 15th and then gather again April 30th to mark our progress. September 17th we’ll launch fall small groups for disciple making, with a review and celebration at the 3rd synod.

We recognize that money is not the best resource of our diocese. Our best resource is the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ. But in order to get the gospel to people, we need to increase our financial capacity and support of the workers. Therefore our 2nd and 3rd priorities will help build a foundation for our mission work together. We are asking each church and mission of the diocese to make the first item of their missionary giving the tithe to the diocese. This teaches each congregation of the diocese that the 1st place of mission giving is through the church to the diocese. (Eph. 3:10) We are partners in mission together and our budgets need to reflect that fact. The 3rd priority of our mission will be implemented by raising money to resource the mission and be in place as a cash reserve for emergencies in the diocese. The Mission Partners Fund is a development project to raise $150,000 to assist new church starts to hire their first missionary clergy by providing funding for the medical benefits portion of their salaries. It will also serve as an emergency fund / cash reserve for the diocese. The business plan is in process for the Ministry Partners Fund and we’ll publish the plan as soon as it is completed. I will be writing to all our clergy and senior wardens to attend the training day on January 15th with other church leaders or to contact me with their alternative plans for disciple making this year. What a joy it is to enter into an intentional plan for the building of a people on mission together for our Lord Jesus Christ and the advance of his kingdom. There will be more to come but for now may our Lord himself empower you with all His grace for every good word and work. May this Advent bring you and your family the fullness of joy in preparation for a deeper gift of Himself this Christmas. In His service and deep in His love,

Bishop William L. Murdoch

Reaching New England with the Transforming Love of Jesus Christ

Sign up to vote on this title
UsefulNot useful