This page contains Annual Reports to Convention for 2015 from various governing bodies and ministries of the Diocese.

Companion Diocese

Companion Diocese

Submitted by Mr. Charles Stewart, Chair

This diocesan committee continues to learn about, live, work and pray with our sisters and brothers in El Salvador, and most especially among the members of Iglesia Episcopal Anglicana de El Salvador (IAES). Hundreds of the parishioners in IAES have met some of the pilgrims from Central New York. In addition to the Mission of Miracles, more than seventy-five persons have experienced life in the churches, in the countryside, and in the street of El Salvador in the past nine years – some several times. Likewise, Central New York has received returning missionaries and Salvadoran clergy in close to a dozen parishes and at our convention. The message of changed lives is carried to our parishes by returning parish members, by sermons delivered from at least ten pulpits, through Facebook and by a new web site.

All are invited to be part of the ministry. We encourage all persons and parishes, most importantly, to pray the Prayer Cycle for the Companion Diocese, published on the Diocesan web site, on Facebook and in brochures available at convention. Those who are able are invited to join a pilgrimage or mission trip. The gospel is spread by serving the poor and marginalized, but more so by openly demonstrating the need and offering opportunities. All ages and abilities can participate, bless and be blessed.

We believe we act on all five of the Marks of Mission:

  • Proclaim the good news: God loves – perhaps especially – those at the margins. We go. We support them. We love each other.
  • Teach, baptize and nurture: Joining in worship, opening the world to our own youth. Vacation Bible School (Escuela Biblia) in parishes we visit
  • Respond to human needs: Mission of Miracles, Habitat missions, Scholarships
  • Transform unjust structures: Forced Internal Displacement and Community Development (Cristosal), LGBTQ support groups, Refugee support
  • Integrity of Creation: Community gardens (Cristosal, El Maizal)

Specific results in 2014/2015

  • Completed (in 2014) sermon series at ten Sunday Eucharists accompanied by pictures of Mission of Miracles in parishes around the diocese, in almost every district
  • In March 2015 preached at the Commemoration of Oscar Romero at St. Paul’s Cathedral, Syracuse
  • Support to the Mission of Miracles through recruiting physician and nurse practitioner
  • Through the leadership of Kip Coerper (St. James’, Skaneateles) a half dozen groups have helped build housing for the homeless with habitat for Humanity
  • Two Habitat for Humanity Mission Trips (sixteen participants) in this reporting period
  • Seventh Youth Pilgrimage (nine participants) in July 2014
  • Continuing to develop another sister parish partnership (St. John’s, Marcellus, and Virgen de Guadelupe, Acajutla). Invited to preach at St. John’s as part of this ministry.
  • Visited Sister Parishes (Virgen de Guadelupe and Santisima Trinidad) as part of youth pilgrimage. Visited Santisima Trinidad after diocesan conventions and Cristosal course
  • Continued support, integration and involvement with Foundation Cristosal
  • Support for partial scholarships for university students
  • Donated Twenty Prayer Books to the Women of San Andres (2014), Bibles, Chairs and other gifts to parishes.
  • Conveyed greetings, love and support at 2014 and 2015 Diocesan Convention by sending delegates
  • Helped to transport prescription medications (>200 pounds) to El Salvador for the 2014 Mission of Miracles
  • Compose Prayer Cycle for the Companion Diocese and publicize weekly on diocesan web page, Facebook and Twitter
  • Habitat Fund Raiser held in January 2014 at St. James’
  • Support Cristosal Fund Raising though donations and publicity
  • Cristosal Child Refugee presentation by Noah Bullock, Executive Director, September 2014
  • Attended a week long school on forced displacement and migration with Cristosal in July 2015. The learnings will inform our work and our message.
  • Attended consecration (with Bishop Adams) of the Right Rev. Juan David Alvarado in San Salvador in January 2015
  • Supported continuation of the covenant between TEC and IARCA at General Convention in Salt Lake City in June 2015
Continuing Ed. for Clergy

Continuing Education for Clergy (Commission on Ministry Team)

Submitted by the Rev. Mark Giroux, Team Leader

This budget area supports three events as continuing education for our clergy: a Clergy Day during the January Epiphany season, a Clergy Quiet Day in preparation for Holy Week, and a two-day Clergy Conference in the autumn.

In 2015, the January Epiphany Clericus was devoted to anti-racism training for the clergy. The Lenten Clergy Day was presented by Sister Mary Donald Corcoran (OSB), and was on “Transitions and the Dynamic of the Paschal Mystery.” As of the time this report was written, plans for the October 2015 Clergy Conference were still in progress.

Diocesan Board

Diocesan Board

Submitted by Ms. Cathy Hobart, Controller

Accruals: Accruals for Lambeth which is held every ten years, Next Bishop Search, Episcopal Youth Event and the Bishop’s sabbatical and General Convention. It has been more than 10 years since the last Lambeth Conference was held. The Next Bishop Search funds accrued will be consumed in 2015 and 2016 as the Diocese transitions to a new Bishop with the retirement of Bishop Adams in 2016. Episcopal Youth Event occurs every three years. The last event was in 2014 and the next one will be in 2017. Sabbatical accrual sets aside funding for the Bishop’s sabbatical which occurs after 6 years. General Convention occurs every three years. The last General Convention was in 2015 in Utah. The next General Convention will be in 2018. A contingent of delegates (10 people) plus the Triennial representatives (3 or 4 people) and the Bishop attend.

Closed Parish properties: Costs of maintaining several closed parish properties – St. Thomas’, North Syracuse, Elmira Heights, All Saints’, Utica, All 3 properties have been or will be listed for sale. The properties are vacant at this time.
Pass Through Expenses: Pass through funds from Bishop’s Visitations, annual solicitation for Contributor’s Fund and payment from Church Insurance for Risk Management Program. Funds expended come from outside sources.

Block Grants: Block Grants awarded in 2014: St. James’, Pulaski $950.00 for a camera and digital projector. The budget was $7,500.00

MDG’s: Four matching grants were made in 2014 for a total of $5,350 to three parishes: Trinity, Fayetteville, St. Paul’s Cathedral, Syracuse, and St. Thomas’ Hamilton. One non-matching grant was made totaling $4,453 to Domestic & Foreign Missionary Society for the Haiti OT/PT project. The grants are awarded by the Global Mission Committee.

Episcopal Church Assessment: The Assessment is based on 18% of the 2014 Diocesan income from the annual Diocesan report, net of a $150,000 exclusion for having a Bishop. The assessment funds the budget of The Episcopal Church, which was adopted by General Convention in July 2015. The Budget for January 1, 2016 through December 31, 2018 is $125,012,351. Funding policy for the period is adopted based on a single asking of the dioceses. After a $150,000 exemption from total income, a single asking shall be applied as follows: 2016 – 18%, 2017 – 16.5% and 2018 – 15% of the balance of income to the diocese, reported in the diocesan financial statements for the year two years prior to the year in which the pledge is applied.

Parish Mission Commitments: Parish Mission Commitments is the payment of earnings from endowments restricted for those specified parishes. During 2014, payments were made quarterly to 35 parishes for a total of $ 94,631. There is also a restricted fund that the proceeds are distributed between two parishes and a cemetery at the donor’s request included in the above numbers. The funds are all held in UIF – Long Term Fund.
Retiree Benefits: Health insurance and life insurance costs for lay retirees from Diocesan staff. Also, health insurance costs for retired clergy spouses under age 65. These costs are paid in full by the covered individual. Actuarial study of retiree benefits required for annual audit. Once a year lunch gathering for retired clergy. Cost for this lunch is fully covered by restricted endowment.

Seminarian Scholarships: COM Ordination for Ministry Team awards scholarships. In 2014, scholarships totaling $13,128 were given to one student at General Theological Seminary.

Unincorporated Parish Properties: Property maintenance expenses related to several unincorporated properties, including Paris Hill, Sackets Harbor. Paris Hill expenses are covered by restricted endowment funds. The rectory at Sackets Harbor is currently rented out and we receive $900 a month in rent that offsets the other property costs.

UTO: Supplies and copies for UTO fall ingathering mailing were spent for a total of $80. Grant to national UTO was made from the balance of the restricted endowment earnings for the year of $5,338.

Commission on Ministry: The funds received by the Commission on Ministry in 2015 were used primarily for Professional fees associated with discernment and ordination processes, including psychological evaluations, background checks, and General Ordination Examinations. A modest amount covered the expenses of a gathering for Discernment Center Teams.

Education for Ministry: Under Mark 1 of the Five Marks of Ministry (Proclaim the Good News of the Kingdom), $2,500 was allocated in the 2014/2015 DCNY budget to cover the annual cost of maintaining the full service contract as a sponsoring diocese for the Education for Ministry (EfM) distance learning program for adult formation through The School of Theology Program Center (SOTPC), The University of the South, Sewanee, TN.

The $2,500 annual fee was paid to SOTPC in semiannual installments of $1,250 this year and each previous year since initiation of the contract with DCNY in 1987.

Bishop Skip approved additional support from DCNY ($627.84) in 2015 to cover training costs for the new coordinator and a new mentor.

Costs incurred in 2015 but not reimbursed include $103.00 for materials and postage for invitations to 170 graduates of EfM currently residing in the DCNY to gather and celebrate with 2015 graduates.

Ministry Support: This budget included lay employee compensation and benefits. Also, the costs of maintaining and operating the Diocesan offices, including rent, supplies, equipment, phone and internet, insurance, meeting expenses, postage, travel and training for staff, dues and fees, uncollectible assessments, depreciation, professional services, audit, legal, and audit scholarships.

Episcopal Fund for Human Needs

Episcopal Fund for Human Needs (EFHN)

Submitted by Ms. Deborah Nettle, Diocesan Liaison

The Episcopal Fund for Human Needs (EFHN) continues to function as a means of helping people in the diocese who have a sudden, unexpected and urgent financial need. These people may or may not be Episcopalians. The majority of urgent needs are to those who have lost jobs but need to keep up with their mortgage/rent payments, utility payments, medical expenses, and so forth. With a few unsolicited contributions from dedicated individuals, we have been able to keep up with the demand. Donations are always welcome. Total grants given in 2014 was $10,855.57.

Members: Mr. Bill Branson, The Rev. Hal Avery, Ms. Mary Bradly, and Mr. Jim Miller
Support Staff: Mrs. Beverly Bolton and Ms. Debbie Nettle

Please go to the Diocesan website at, under Ministry, to find out more about EFHN or by calling the Diocesan office at (315) 474-6596 and speak to Debbie Nettle.

Ephphatha Deaf Church

Ephphatha Deaf Church

Submitted by the Very Rev. Peter Williams, Vicar

The funds in the Deaf church budget enabled the priest for the Deaf to travel around the diocese to do pastoral visits in Deaf households, hospital and nursing home visits, and to be involved in some events in the wider Deaf community. We continue to hold Deaf church services in Watertown and Liverpool.

The funds also covered modest office expenses to pay for high speed internet to connect a video phone for the Deaf at the office, and provided basic office expenses to prepare mailings, so we can keep in touch with members of the Deaf community. Interpreter funds will be used to make the Diocese of CNY more accessible to Deaf people.

Episcopal Relief & Development

Episcopal Relief & Development

Submitted by Mrs. Bonnie Adams, Diocesan Coordinator

Funds from the 2015 budget were used for air transportation to Seattle for the yearly network meeting of Diocesan coordinators of Episcopal Relief & Development.

Mission of Miracles

Mission of Miracles

Submitted by Mrs. Bonnie Adams, Chair

The Mission of Miracles (MoM) program is extremely grateful for funds received from the Diocesan budget. The funds are used toward operating costs including a stipend for a local dentist, medical supplies, and pharmaceuticals to supplement the Episcopal Relief & Development health program of the diocese of El Salvador.

In February 2015 the Mission of Miracles program completed its 12th mission in El Salvador!

A team of nearly 50 people from Central New York and El Salvador (28 from Central New York) served over 1,000 villagers. We joined our varied skills and talents: driving buses and trucks, speaking Spanish, medical, nursing, and playing with children, engineering, electrical, organizational, and dental, nutrition, and pharmaceutical into one body which moved daily into rural communities in El Salvador.

In addition to medical and dental treatments, we offered public health teaching in hygiene, nutritional counseling, and EKG’s.

Thank you, thank you for collecting pill bottles, donating medicine, flip flops, tooth brushes, and for the immense financial support.

Training & Resources

Training & Resources for Ministry Team

Submitted by the Rev. Bridget McManus, Team Leader

Team Members:
The Rev. Bridget McManus, Team Leader
Ms. Ruthie Koerts
Ms. Hope VanScoy
Mr. Richard VanScoy
Ms. Terri Weir
Ms. Kathy Dengler, Bishop’s Liaison to the Team

Since our last report to Convention, the Training & Resources Team of the Commission on Ministry has presented a Vestry Day and a Worship Leader Training. The Team continues to work on training opportunities for Vestries and Licensed Ministry Leaders.

Vestry Day
at Drumlin’s Country Club, Syracuse
The focus of this year’s Vestry Day was “Abundant Life in Christ: Gifts for Parish Leadership”.

Clergy and Vestry Members from around the Diocese gathered for this day-long event. There were 114 people present, representing 42 different parishes.

Worship Leader Training
at Grace and Holy Spirit, Cortland
The purpose of this training is to educate and encourage Worship Leaders to create and lead vibrant non-Eucharistic worship. The training was led by the Rev. Bridget McManus and the Rev. Craig Swan. There were 43 people in attendance from 20 different parishes.

Safe Church
Bill O’Connell served as Coordinator of the Safe Church program through this program year. There are 36 licensed trainers. This year also saw the rollout of a program especially for teens who will be leading diocesan events for other youth, such as Happening. Barb Talbot of St. Matthew’s, Horseheads developed and chairs this training program. There are 19 (adult) trainers licensed to offer this program to teens.

Lay Preaching Program
The Lay Preaching Training Program is now in its second year in the Diocese of Central New York. Coordinated by the Rev. Carrie Schofield-Broadbent, the students meet for two years: four times a year with weekly homework and assignments between each class.

Our inaugural class began in January of 2014 with seven students. Our next class, which began in January of 2015, was comprised of two students. Our newest class, which began in September of 2015, has five students. We’re not running on a school year calendar. The first class is completing its course in November of 2015, when many of the students will apply for their certificate in Lay Preaching from the Bishop. Already many of our first class of preachers have had experience preaching outside of their home parishes.

We’re grateful for the students in the program who are steadfast in their work of becoming good preachers. We’re also grateful for the clergy who serve as their mentors and those who have joined us for class to offer “Master Classes.” We’re also grateful to Bishop Adams for allowing this new ministry to grow and develop in our diocese.

Transition Consultants

Transition Consultant Ministry

Submitted by the Rev. James Corl, Chair

Expenditures during 2014 were as follows:

  • Training
    • Interim Ministry Training $872
    • Gesalt Institute Training $1005
    • Total for 2014 $1877
  • Congregational Scholarships $3828

Expenditures during 2015 to date:

  • Training (including printed materials) $994

We anticipate spending the balance of our budget for 2015. Congregational scholarships vary from year to year, and new work is opening up even as we plan the new budget.

Transition Ministry

Transition/Deployment Ministry

Submitted by Ms. Judy Fried, Diocesan Liaison

The “office” of Transition Ministry/Deployment is a resource for parishes, clergy, and vestries in the Diocese who are in any kind of transition. Transition in a parish can occur when a rector/priest makes a decision to retire or the priest leaves a parish to accept a new call. Transition Ministry involves working with wardens and vestries when there is no priest-in-charge of the parish as they begin the process of evaluation their parish ministries and structures and discern the kind of ministry they want to be involved in for their future. Transition Ministry involves working with clergy who are discerning a new call in ministry and how to work through a search process. Transition Ministry is also working with a Search Committee to guide them through the process of calling a new rector/priest-in-charge.

The Diocese of Central New York is a member of the Transition Ministry Conference and we participate in Conferences held twice a year with members from 43 other Diocese in the Episcopal Church. This past year, I attended two conferences; one was held at The Duncan Center in Delray Beach, Florida and the other was held at the Diocese of Virginia’s conference center in Richmond. These conferences are a gathering of representatives from 43 bishop’s offices in Dioceses in The Episcopal Church. We share names of clergy looking for new calls and parishes looking for new clergy. In addition, we share “best practices” and have discussions about the process and procedures used in the Transition Process.

I work with clergy in the Diocese who were discerning a new call to ministry. I also work with clergy assisting them with how to prepare their Office of Transition Ministry Portfolio, which is posted on a website thru the Episcopal Church.

A part of the role of the Diocesan Transition Minister/Deployment Officer, includes working with the Transition Ministry Consultant group of the Diocese. Transition Ministry Consultants are trained interim clergy who will work with a parish that is “transitioning” in some way – working with a parish that does not have a priest and helping to guide them in discerning the next steps in their ministry and/or calling a new priest.

The Diocesan Transition/Deployment Officer is also the Bishop’s representative to the Ministry Support Committee and serves to provide information as they review and make policies that govern Clergy Compensation and implementation of benefits for lay employees of parishes.

My work also includes working to coordinate the DAYSPRING group (formerly known as Fresh Start Program) of the Diocese. DAYSPRING is a program for clergy in new positions who are “in charge” of parishes. DAYSPRING is led by two priests of the Diocese: the Rev. Georgina Hegney and the Rev. Adrian Amaya. The DAYSPRING group meets once each year with Bishop Adams – this meeting includes a lunch.

Youth Council

Diocesan Youth Council

Submitted by Ms. Barbara Talbott, Facilitator

The Ministry of the Youth Council‘s funding primarily goes to the support of three programs. They are Vocare, Happening, and New Beginnings. In addition, this past year EYE, or The Episcopal Youth Event was funded. Next year we hope to offer some district centered smaller events to meet the needs of the youth. We hope to provide a small stipend for a part time Youth Advisor position to provide support and leadership in the diocese to better meet the needs of the youth. $1,000 of the funds for this stipend would come out of the moneys allocated for Youth ministry, $4,000 of the moneys would come from our budget.

Vocare is designed for young adults ages 18- 35 years old. It engages this demographic of the Church in fellowship, conversation about the relevant and significant topics of faith and spirituality. There are 12 talks led by young adults and small group activities which enable the participant to think critically and discern their call from God within the Church and society. Vocare will be held at St. Mark the Evangelist in Syracuse on June 7th this year. Vocare occurs just once a year. Last year there were about 6 participants.

Happening is a retreat designed for youth in grades 9 through 12 and led by a team of teens who have experienced Happening as candidates. Happening’s main focus is to proclaim the Good News of the Kingdom in terms that the teens coin, through a series of talks designed to encourage the participants in their own walk with Christ. The team’s talks are heard and critiqued by the rest of the team and the adults at a weekend meeting prior to the actual event. Teens who participate are guided by the adults to become leaders, help them mature as believers, step out in faith and lead them as they learn how to nurture the new candidates. The Spring dates for Happening are April 17- 19 2015, and will be held at Vandercamp. Currently, there are 9 candidates and 7 on the team. The Fall Happening will be held at Casawasco retreat Center near Moravia NY on October 23-25, 2015. The spring dates for 2016 have not been set yet. Additionally, Prayer community is part of the Happening community. Prayer community is in the background praying for, and providing some of the experiences for the team and candidates. Last year there were 10 youth who supported Happening through what is known as PC or prayer community in the fall, and about that many are signed up to help PC for this spring event. Youth who work through PC grow in their understanding and use of prayer as a true means to connect and know Christ and share his love. Dan and Judy Brayer are the spiritual directors for this group.

New Beginnings is an opportunity for youth in grades 6 through 9th to help them grow in their experience of themselves in Christ. It is formational in that youth begin to see themselves as part of a wider community of Faith. The Spring retreat on March 20-22 2015 was held at Light on the Hill Retreat Center in Van Etten. At that event, one of the mothers cooked all the food, saving around $1,000. They had 15 people, and 7 youth. The Fall retreat will be held September 25-27 at St. Peter’s Church in Cazenovia, saving even more. The Spring 2016 date will be April 8th weekend, and will be held at Zion Church in Green, NY. Tory and Kristin Bloom are the spiritual directors.

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