2012 Theme “Abound in Hope”

FROM the Church News Council 2012 Insert at Church News

For the 108th time, clergy and laity representing the congregations and institutions of the Episcopal Diocese of West Texas – as well as many guests and presenters – will gather for our annual Diocesan Council as we carry on the work and ministry of Christ in and beyond our diocese.

Council 2012 will meet February 16-18 at the convention center in McAllen.  St. John’s, McAllen, will serve as host and will share the hosting of Council with other churches in the Valley, including St. Peter St. Paul, Mission; St. Alban’s, Harlingen; Grace, Weslaco; St. Matthew’s, Edinburg; and Trinity, Pharr.

This year’s diocesan theme, which will be introduced at Council, is “Abound in Hope.”  This is a portion of Romans 15:13 which proclaims:  “May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope.”

We are called to live our lives in and with hope.  The opening acclamation in the baptismal service, from Ephesians 4.4-6, calls us to worship with the words:

Celebrant       “There is one Body and one Spirit;
People              There is one hope in God’s call to us;
Celebrant        One Lord, one Faith, one Baptism;
People              One God and Father of all.”

As we abound in hope, we in fact live within it and it lives within us.  As we gather at our Diocesan Council in McAllen, and as we live our lives in our congregations and in our communities, let us strengthen our relationships and refresh our call to ministry to “Be Jesus’ Witnesses” (Acts 1.8 and the ‘Core Purpose’ of the diocese).