The Board of Directors and the Conference Planning Committee were excited to share several days of hopeful, joyful, and insightful conversation and peer-to-peer learning with the Episcopal Parish Network at the Leading Beyond the Walls Gathering. We hope attendees enjoyed sharing in some of over 50 workshops and pre-conferences and were able to visit with over 70 Ministry Partner Sponsors in the Exhibit Hall.
The conference provided the opportunity for the best and most important part of belonging to the Episcopal Parish Network: bringing members together. Connecting old and new friends and peers is a hallmark of the Episcopal Parish Network and a principal way of supporting each other’s ministries.
Our time together in Louisville was filled with insight and inspiration. With his keynote, Adam Hamilton challenged us to think in new ways about being church. In her preaching, Winnie Varghese called on us to use our resources generously. Through his sharing about leading through empathetic listening, Bob Chapman encouraged us to recognize that everybody matters. And, in closing our time together, Michael Battle used Archbishop Desmond Tutu’s life as a frame for our living whole, meaningful, and interconnected lives.
The Episcopal Parish Network over the last year has evolved into a collection of almost two hundred parishes, cathedrals, and resourced Episcopal institutions committed to strengthening leaders for a changed and changing church. Working with partners like Alban at Duke, the Kanuga Conference Center, and Trinity Church Wall Street, we are creating new opportunities for conversation about the mission, structure, and economic models for our parishes and other institutions. In the coming months, members will be invited to gather in new places and new ways as we plan for a future committed to being authentic witnesses of our Christian faith.
Thanks to all for their investment in the Episcopal Parish Network’s gathering and our broader work together. In the coming year, we will build on the foundation of our first 35 years together.
See you in Dallas for next year’s Leading for Such a Time as This: The Church as Witness Gathering from March 3-6.
Members of the largest and deepest network of resourced institutions from across The Episcopal Church and around the country as we continue the work of strengthening leaders for a changing church through connecting, equipping, and diversifying.
Thank you to our host parish, Calvary Church, in Louisville for a lovely article on our 2020 Annual Conference. Lee and the entire Calvary family were wonderful to welcome the Episcopal Parish Network to their beautiful city. Our gratitude is boundless.
2020 Conference Speakers
Reverend Adam Hamilton
Adam Hamilton is senior pastor of The United Methodist Church of the Resurrection in Leawood, Kansas, one of the fastest growing, most highly visible churches in the country. The Church Report named Hamilton’s congregation the most influential mainline church in America, and he preached at the National Prayer Service as part of the presidential inauguration festivities in 2013. Hamilton is the best-selling and award-winning author of The Call, Making Sense of the Bible, Love to Stay, The Journey, The Way, 24 Hours That Changed the World, Revival, Not a Silent Night, Enough, When Christians Get It Wrong, and Seeing Gray in a World of Black and White, all published by Abingdon Press.
You can view the video of Adam's keynote speech here.
Recently named the #3 CEO in the world in an Inc. magazine article, Bob Chapman is very intentional about using his platform as a business leader to build a better world.
Chapman is Chairman and CEO of St. Louis, MO-based Barry-Wehmiller, a $2.5B global manufacturing business with 11,000 team members. The company began as a small pasteurizing and bottle washer business in 1885 and, through acquisition and organic growth, has grown into 12 business units (10 in the US) serving primarily the packaging, paper converting, sheeting and corrugating industries. Chapman became the senior executive of this private company in 1975 at age 30 when the 80-year-old business had $20 million in revenue, outdated technology and a very weak financial position. Despite the obstacles, Chapman applied a unique blend of strategy and culture over the next 40 years in leading Barry-Wehmiller through almost 90 successful acquisitions.
You can view the video of Bob's speech here.
The Very Rev. Michael Battle
Currently appointed as Herbert Thompson Professor of Church and Society and Director of the Desmond Tutu Center at General Theological Seminary in New York, the Very Rev. Michael Battle, Ph.D. has an undergraduate degree from Duke University, received his master’s of Divinity from Princeton Theological Seminary, a master’s of Sacred Theology from Yale University and a PhD in theology and ethics, also from Duke University. He was ordained a priest by Archbishop Desmond Tutu in 1993. Battle’s clergy experience, in addition to his current church work, includes serving as vicar at St. Titus Episcopal Church in Durham, NC, rector at Church of Our Saviour, in San Gabriel, California; rector at St. Ambrose Episcopal Church, Raleigh, N.C.; and interim rector or associate priest with other churches in North Carolina and in Cape Town, South Africa.
You can view the video of Michael's speech here.
Opening Worship Preacher
The Rev. Winnie Varghese
Trinity Church Wall Street
The Rev. Winnie Varghese is a priest on the Strategic Clergy team at Trinity Church Wall Street.
Before coming to Trinity, Rev. Varghese was the rector of St. Mark’s in the Bowery, a historic Episcopal congregation in New York City. From 2003-2009, she served as the Episcopal Chaplain at Columbia University. From 1999-2003 she served as the curate at St. Alban’s, Westwood and Episcopal Chaplain to UCLA.
You can view the video of Winnie's sermon here.