DIVINE RENOVATION AT EPIPHANY:
THE NEXT 150 YEARS
The Church of the Epiphany has had a long and proud 150 year history. At times it has been a dynamic spiritual, social, and missionary presence in our Gramercy neighborhood. It has served thousands of good people and their families, and we are grateful to stand on the shoulders of wonderful parishioners, clergy, nuns, and teachers who made Epiphany a point of light for so many.
As Epiphany begins its next chapter, we seek to be a welcoming church, inviting women and men, young and old, rich and poor, people of all races and sexual orientation to worship with us as we seek a deeper relationship with Jesus, and to serve our sisters and brothers with love. We believe that the Holy Spirit is inviting our church to grow, and we wish to cooperate in that effort.
We recognize that many are angry and suffering, disenchanted and despairing from the abuses and of the Church and its leaders. We recognize culpability and seek justice for those injured, even as we strive for greater holiness, humility and sanctity.
We believe in God’s ongoing presence and revelation in our world, and with Pope Francis, we seek to discern God’s will in our lives and for us all.
We subscribe to the vision of Fr James Mallon, author of Divine Renovation: From Maintenance to Mission, that we are called to deepen our personal relationship with Jesus as his disciples and to share our faith as his apostles.
We also choose to commit ourselves to one another in worship and prayer, in fellowship, to serve our sisters and brothers everywhere with compassion, and to be good stewards of our church through ministry and financial means.
THE FUTURE OF OUR PARISH
There is a new Spirit moving at Epiphany! We would to tell you more about what has been happening behind the scenes in the Parish, and what is being planned for the future.
At the beginning of 2018 under Virginia Hill’s leadership, the ‘RENEW’ committee was formed, where new ideas for parish ministries were generated and implemented. The RENEW committee was responsible for initiating programs such as the coffee hour, outreach food program, spiritual book library, Song Project, interfaith ministry, and much more. As it stands today, some of these new ministries are actively ongoing and some are on hold or awaiting new leaders.
As new ministries multiplied, we began to acknowledge the need for a robust strategy for stable and sustainable church renewal and growth. Earlier this year the Parish was introduced to ‘Divine Renovation’ (DR), a program of Catholic church renewal. The creator of DR, Fr James Mallon, leads a now-thriving parish in Canada where people of all ages have come alive with love for God, for each other and the world. You will have heard talk of the Divine Renovation book; we hope you will buy your own copy and become as excited by the possibilities as we are!
Under Fr Austin’s leadership, a strategic committee was formed to move the Parish towards implementing Divine Renovation organizational structures. This interim committee has been meeting and working hard to propose a vision for Epiphany’s future in line with Jesus’ Great Commission (Matthew 28:16-20), including three goals:
1 to bring parishioners to a personal relationship with Christ
2 to create disciples who will grow in their faith
3 to transform Epiphany into a missionary parish
We will use the Alpha Course program as a key tool towards helping everyone in the parish grow closer to Jesus, and for developing parish leaders for the present and the future.
A new Parish Structure has been developed in line with the Divine Renovation model. It includes:
The Pastoral Council (PC) will define and map out a long-term strategy for the Parish, and set priorities within this new model.
The Senior Leadership Team (SLT) will be responsible for implementing the strategies defined by the PC, and to make the day to day management of the parish really workable.
The Finance Council will continue to help guide our finances and align our expenditures towards our threefold vision.
The Staff Team of the Pastor will continue to support our growing activities and life in the parish.
Ministry Coordinators of our emerging ministries will be organized into Ministry Areas, and they will comprise the Senior Leadership Team.
Perhaps you are wondering where this all leaves you personally? Well, we need you to join us in making Epiphany a shining example of an evangelizing church!
Your talent is God’s gift to us all. We need: people with practical skills, creative and musical gifts, people with experience in business and on boards, we need people with technical and social media knowledge. People who will serve and people who will pray, people who will speak and lead in public, and people who will quietly serve others in the background. Expert or beginner and everything in between: God will use every willing heart!
Our hope is to have this structure in place at the end of the summer. If you think you can help us out at that time by serving in the Pastoral Council, the Senior Leadership Team, the Finance Council, as a Ministry Coordinator, or as a member of any of the ministry teams, please contact us at SERVEEPIPHANY@gmail.com