Every year on the first weekend of November, certain members of the diocese gather together to conduct business required by the constitution and canons. This business meeting is called "Convention," and about 175 people, clergy and laity are "delegates" who attend.
Last year, Bishop Jim Hobby shared a vision to expand this weekend event in two ways. First, he added workshops on topics of concern (in 2017, it was discipleship and prayer). Second, this addition of workshops allowed ALL the people of the diocese to be invited, especially lay people who would have no connection to the business portion.
The vision for this coming November weekend is to be broadened to an all-diocesan event; part family reunion, part discipleship formation conference, with the business need still preserved to meet canonical requirements. Therefore, a new name was needed that could be carried over from year to year and reflects both intentions.
Introducing...Gathering 2018: Diocesan Conference & 153rd Convention
If you've been to convention in the past, we hope this name change will help expand your idea of what this weekend is and what it could be, so you can join us in inviting a wider range of people from your parish (FYI - all clergy already attend convention).
What's Staying the Same:
- We're still at St. Stephen's Church in Sewickley, PA this year.
- The dates are still the same. The first weekend of November after All Saints Day this year is Nov. 2-3, 2018.
- Convention business will still be conducted as it has in previous years.
- Bishop Jim will still be presiding over the opening Eucharistic service & providing his leadership throughout the entire event. As in previous years, the opening service will be a beautiful time to see people from all corners of the diocese offer their gifts and service in worship.
- The Friday evening banquet will look pretty much the same, which means good food and fellowship with your fellow Anglicans!
- Workshops will be offered on a variety of topics.
- Youth are invited to particiapte in the Diocesan Youth Track.
- Clergy spouses are invited to a special lunch event on Saturday hosted by Mama Shari Hobby.
What will be different/new:
- The convention schedule will be modified to accommodate the workshop format more. Keep posted to our website for the schedule.
- Participants who are not involved in convention business will be participating in workshops at the same time as convention proceedings.
- There will be a pre-convention hearing held early Friday afternoon at St. Stephen's. Another pre-convention hearing will be held on Sun. Oct. 21 at St. Alban's in Murrysville and it will be live-streamed.
- With your help, more of our friends from our parishes will be joining us!
Registration for Gathering will be opening in early August & we'll be announcing and debuting more information on our website in the coming weeks. In the meantime, help us get the word out. We've prepared a "Save the Date" bulletin insert that you can download, print and share in your parishes. Feel free to pass it along to your priest, or the person who prepares your church bulletins/announcements or give personally to a friend you'd like to invite.
As we've prayed over this change, we hope this new re-imagining of what had been just convention will spur on and catalyze a renewed call to ministry in all of the places God has called us to. We invite you to join us in those prayers.