Two Episcopal seminaries: Virginia Theological Seminary (VTS) and General Theological Seminary (GTS), today announced the creation of an exciting innovative joint project focused on the future of the church.
The Rev. Nicholas S. Szobota, Class of 2005, is the new Rector of St. Mary’s Episcopal Church in Colonial Beach, Virginia. He had been serving as Rector of Christ Episcopal Church in West River, Maryland since 2011.
Szobota previously served as an Associate Rector at St. John’s Episcopal Church in Ellicott City, Maryland (2007-2011) and as a Clergy Resident at Christ Episcopal Church in Alexandria, Virginia (2005-2007). Before attending General, he received his Bachelor of Arts degree in Religious Studies and English Literature from Drew University.
When asked about the importance of this conference, Stace responded, “Religious institutions have an opportunity to save lives.” She went on to cite several studies that indicated the significant decrease of depression and suicide rates among transgender people and discovering a genuinely affirming religious community.
The Rev. Joel C. Daniels, Class of 2007, has been called as Rector of Nevil Memorial Church of Saint George, Ardmore Pennsylvania beginning Advent 1, December 2, 2018.
Daniels has most recently been serving as Associate for Evangelism at Saint Thomas Church Fifth Avenue, New York City. Over the past four years there he has gained experience in a variety of parish ministries: creating a new process for welcoming visitors and incorporating them into the life of the parish; overseeing various external parish communications; and, most recently, running the parish's adult education program, Theology at Saint Thomas.
In addition to his parish work, Daniels has maintained an active ministry in academic and ecumenical contexts, teaching as adjunct theology faculty at General and Fordham University, and serving on the Ecumenical and Interfaith Commission of the Diocese of New York. His book, Theology, Tragedy, and Suffering in Nature: Toward a Realist Doctrine of Creation, was published in 2016. He serves on the Board of Directors of the Society of Scholar-Priests and is also a post-doctoral fellow of the Center for Mind and Culture.
The Rev. Canon Lynn Carter-Edmands, Class of 1990, has been appointed Canon to the Ordinary in the Diocese of Southern Ohio effective October 1, 2018. Formerly Canon for Formation and Transitions, Carter-Edmands has served on the Bishop’s staff for nearly seven years.
Carter-Edmands has over twenty-five years of leadership experience in parish and diocesan ministry, including vocational discernment and mentoring, congregation and clergy transitions, formation and leadership development, and mediation and conflict transformation. She has served as the rector of two parishes; and as a chaplain and teacher at a boy’s preparatory school where she taught Bible, Ethics, and senior electives in religion. She has been married for 37 years to the Rev. Frank A. Edmands, also a member of the Class of 1990.
Artist and Spiritual Director Heather K. Sisk received her M.A. in Spiritual Direction from General in 2010 and has returned as a Middler M.Div. candidate. Her original sculptures on the theme of Mary Magdalene as spiritual guide, first exhibited at General in 2012, are now on display in the lobby of the Christoph Keller, Jr. Library.
This project is based on the subject of Sisk’s Masters Thesis and was funded in part through a grant awarded by the Episcopal Evangelism Society in 2010. These pieces act as three dimensional icons to accompany a retreat based on The Magdalene as role model for a spiritual journey which is accessible to all of us. The retreat has traveled since 2012.
As Sisk describes the project:
“Mary Magdalene as disciple, witness, and prophet is one of our strongest role models for understanding the elements that emerge as one enters into a spiritual journey. This installation explores the arc of The Magdalene’s witness through healing, discernment, abiding, and transformation. For hundreds of years the emphasis on her character as a prostitute has overshadowed her vital role as a close follower of Jesus and the first witness to the resurrected Christ; obscuring her significant example of spirituality. These four sculptures are dedicated to spiritual elements I believe The Magdalene exemplifies for us, and are always intended and extended for the community in her prophetic exclamation, ‘I have seen the Lord!’ These elements do not follow in a necessary order but cycle within us as we grow into deeper awareness of the movement of the divine encounter.”
The Rev. Dr. Harry Frederick Shaefer, III, who matriculated and studied at General from 1961-1963 before graduating from Union in 1964, died peacefully in Johnson City, TN on August 28, 2018 at the age of 79.
He graduated from Oberlin College in 1961 after studying Greek, philosophy, history, and literature, and received his doctorate in ministry from Ecumenical Theological Seminary in 1992. Ordained an Episcopal Priest in 1964, Shaefer served churches in New York, New Hampshire, Michigan, and Tennessee.
Since 2000, Shaefer had a very active Sunday ministry often pasturing churches while they were in transition, considering it a blessing that the Diocese of East Tennessee permitted him to continue this ministry in his retirement. Late in his career he returned to his first scholarly love, the study of the New Testament. His book, First Thessalonians: The Hidden History of the Pauline Churches, was published in 2013.
Shaefer was born in Brooklyn, New York, the son of the late Harry Frederick Shaefer, Jr. and Dorothea Ellen Reynolds Shaefer. Survivors include his wife of 44 years, Marjorie Moore Shaefer; brothers Robert “Bob” (Polly) and Lewis (Susan); children Erik Shaefer, Tessa Quinones, Jason “Jack” Shaefer (Courtney “Kitty”), Luke Shaefer (Susie); grandchildren Elizabeth, Taran, Caeden, Colton, Bridget and Michael.
Services were conducted at St. John’s Episcopal Church, Johnson City TN, on Thursday, September 6th, 2018 and at the Cathedral Church of St. Paul in Detroit Mi, on Saturday, September 15.
The Rev. Daniel Dice, Class of 2008, has been called as the seventh rector of St. John’s parish, Duxbury, Massachusetts.
Dice has been serving as Interim Rector at St. James Cathedral, Chicago, after previously serving as Interim at the Church of the Atonement in that city. Previously, he served three parishes in Atlanta, Georgia, and one in Brooklyn, NY. He was born in Columbus, Ohio, and grew up in the small town of Beavercreek, outside of Dayton.
He was graduated from Miami University, in Oxford, Ohio, and from law school before practicing law for seven years. While at General he served at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine and parishes in the West Village and in Baltimore, Maryland. His Massachusetts roots date back to 1636, and both he and his husband, Mannie Kachintagsa, are thrilled to be “coming home” to Duxbury.
Dice’s first day as rector of St. John’s will be on December 1st. The first Sunday in Advent will be his first Sunday service.
The Rev. Jennifer Anne Reddall, Class of 2002, was chosen as the sixth bishop of the Diocese of Arizona during the 58th Annual Diocesan Convention held Oct. 20, 2018 at All Saints’ Episcopal Church & Day School in Phoenix, AZ.
The first woman to be elected bishop in the Diocese of Arizona, Reddall is currently the rector of Church of the Epiphany in New York City, and was one of three candidates.
In order to be elected, a candidate needed to receive a simple majority of votes from both the clergy and the lay delegates, voting separately as orders in the same balloting round. Reddall was elected on the first ballot, receiving 75 of 136 clergy votes and 172 of 304 lay votes.
Speaking with Bishop Kirk Smith, who called to notify her of the election, Reddall said, “I am awed by your love and confidence in me, and praying deeply to the Holy Spirit to endow me with the gifts you need and deserve in a bishop. Thank you. Your ministry and your faithfulness in following Jesus’ call has inspired me, and the Diocese of Arizona is going to continue to inspire people all around your state as we share the Good News of Christ’s love through word and action together. My son, Nathan, and I are both so excited to move to Arizona and begin this new ministry with you.”
Reddall grew up in California, and after graduating from Yale University with a degree in theater studies, she joined the Episcopal Urban Intern Program in Los Angeles. She received her Master of Divinity degree from General in 2002. Reddall’s parents moved to Tucson in 2016.
Pending consent of a majority of the bishops with jurisdiction and the diocesan standing committees, Reddall will be ordained and consecrated on March 9, 2019, at the Church of the Nations in Phoenix. Presiding Bishop Michael Curry will preside.