Spiritual Ministries

The Daughters of the King is a spiritual sisterhood of women dedicated to a life of Prayer, Service and Evangelism. The Lady of Walsingham Chapter at St. Aidan’s was founded in 1999 and is a strong and active chapter with over 40 members. The DOK are ordinary women who are dedicated to the spread of Christ’s kingdom and supporting each other in our spiritual walk.

The DOK meets at 10:00am on the second Saturday of each month in the Library in Burtenshaw Hall.  Meetings are open and visitors are welcome to attend. The Chapter

upholds the commitment to Prayer, Service and Evangelism through various ministries, service projects and events.  The DOK also maintains a confidential prayer list; supports the clergy and DoK Sisters and their families and friends, through this list.

The DOK serves St. Aidan’s and and community through:

An annual quiet morning in January. Each woman brings favorite prayers or Bible verses for a wonderful morning of fellowship sharing prayers..

Spring Eucharist – The Spring Eucharist, renewal of vows, and Brunch, open to all the women of St. Aidan’. This is a special event for Sisters of DoK as well as women who want to learn more about us and consider membership in the Order.

Advent Soup Supper – Each December, DoK extends an invitation to all women of St. Aidan’s to attend a joyous evening of feasting, fellowship and sacred time for preparing our hearts to welcome the Christ child. An evening of fellowship, with friends new and old, makes our evening together holy and fun. All women are invited.

The DOK is active in many areas of St. Aidan’s, and welcomes all women of the church to its chapter.

For more information or to become involved in the Daughters of the King please contact Sally Dodds via the church office at [email protected] or 770-521-0207

The Retired Men’s Covenant Group meets every Thursday morning from 9:00-11:30am in the cottage for fellowship and conversation. New members are welcome!  Join any Thursday if you want (dare!) to know more.

For more information or to become involved in the Retired Men’s Covenant Group please contact Bud Alexander via the church office at [email protected] or 770-521-0207.

St Aidan’s library is a small collection of a wide variety of books with a spiritual theme. There are books for all ages covering both scriptural and lay themes. Books may be signed out at any time for any period – it is an informal system whereby the borrower simply signs a list with the book title, name of the borrower and date. The library is currently a work-in-progress awaiting direction from our new Rector.

For more information or to become involved in the library please contact Linda Weeks via the church office at [email protected] or 770-521-0207.

R.E.S.P.E.C.T. the Dignity of Every Human Being

 “The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.”  Matthew 25:35-40

Celebrant: “Will you strive for justice and peace among all people, and respect the dignity of every human being?”
People: “I will with God’s help.” (BCP page 305 from the Baptismal Covenant) 

Welcome! This page provides resources to help you explore areas of inequity in society. We invite you to read books, view movies, and visit websites that speak to you.  And we invite you to come and be uncomfortable with us in a safe and holy place on Sundays in the Library (in the pre-school area of Burtenshaw Hall) from 10 – 10:45AM during the school year.  We call our class  R.E.S.P.E.C.T.

R – Racism

E – Equity for Immigrants

S – Social Gospel

P – Position of the Episcopal Church

E – Equality of LGBT persons

C – Capital Punishment

T – Transformation

We are currently exploring the topic of Racism by watching Traces of the Trade independently, and viewing 13th as a group (open invitation to all) on July 22nd. When classes resume we will read “Gather at the Table.”

Racism

“Therefore, as we have the opportunity, let us do good to all people.” Galatians 6:10

“Because racism works against our baptismal call to love others in the power of the spirit and to strive for justice and peace among all people, we seek to heal this chronic illness in our faith community through education, developing greater awareness of its existence in our ongoing spiritual formation.”

This is from the Mission Statement of the Episcopal Diocese of Atlanta’s Commission “The Beloved Community: Commission for Dismantling Racism”.   People of color are dis-proportionately poor, incarcerated, executed, and attend failing schools.  Racism still exists in America.
Explore more on this topic here.

Equity for Immigrants

There are numerous readings in the Bible that tell us to love our neighbor and to welcome the stranger. The parable of the Good Samaritan is probably the most well-known. (Luke 10:25-37) Through the parable Jesus instructs us to love everyone, even those who come from a different background or religious affiliation.

Explore more on this topic here.

The Social Gospel

Christian faith practiced as a call not just to personal conversion but also to social reform – this is the Social Gospel. In other words, we care about injustice and we care for the poor, all the while sharing our faith enthusiastically, simply because that’s what Jesus did.

“For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.” Matthew 25:35-36

Explore more on this topic here.

Position of the Episcopal Church

The Episcopal Church meets every 3 years as a bicameral legislature called General Convention. This governing body of the Church includes the House of Deputies and the House of Bishops, composed of deputies and bishops from each diocese. During this multi-day convention, the Church develops policies and legislation on issues ranging from marriage to stewardship of creation to finances for missions. Legislation passed during General Convention becomes the official Position of The Episcopal Church.

Additionally the Office of Government Relations in Washington, D.C. represents the policy priorities of the Episcopal Church to the U.S. government.

Explore more on this topic here.

Equality of LGBT persons 

In 1976 the General Convention of The Episcopal Church declared that “homosexual persons are children of God who have a full and equal claim with all other persons upon the love, acceptance, and pastoral concern and care of the Church” (1976-A069). Since then, faithful Episcopalians have been working toward a greater understanding and radical inclusion of all of God’s children.

Explore more on this topic here.

Capital Punishment

The death penalty has been used and debated all over the world for many years.  Arguments for and against the practice center around the following issues:

  1. Morality
  2. Constitutionality
  3. Deterrence
  4. Retribution
  5. Irrevocable Mistakes
  6. Cost of Death vs. Life in Prison
  7. Race
  8. Closure for Victims’ Families
  9. Attorney Quality
  10. Physicians at Execution

This list was compiled by ProCo.org, a non-profit organization.

Christians are divided on this issue citing scripture that

  • mandates capital punishment  (Exodus 21:12-14; Leviticus 24:17,21)
  • prohibits capital punishment (Exodus 20:13)
  • permits capital punishment (Genesis 9:6)

Explore more on this topic here.

Transformation

Jesus called us to be a transformed people through his life and through his death. Jesus instructed his disciples to love one another, to turn the other cheek, to clothe the naked, to take the log out of their own eyebefore they took the speck out of their neighbor’s, to forgive seventy times seven. As Christians, we believe that we are all created in the image of God. You might consider signing up for Sojourners on-line here – or not. Regardless, we invite you to join us on Sunday mornings as we seek to be transformed, following Jesus’ call to love.

Racism 

Because racism works against our baptismal call to love others in the power of the spirit and to strive for justice and peace among all people, we seek to heal this chronic illness in our faith community through education, developing greater awareness of its existence in our ongoing spiritual formation. We will use prayer, intentional action, continued dialogue and the sharing of our personal and collective stories to help in facilitating the healing, transformation and reconciliation that will make it possible for us to truly see the face of God in all others.

All clergy, church staff, vestry members and others in leadership positions are required to go through the one-day training provided by the Commission. Trainings are offered in a variety of locations around the Diocese. To find the next training click here.

Books & Films

Living Into God’s Dream:Dismantling Racism in America by Catherine Meeks (Editor)

Outside Agitator: Jon Daniels and the Civil Rights Movement in Alabama by Charles Eagles 

Here Am I Send Me (Documentary)

Traces of the Trade (PBS) and companion book, Gather at the Table by Thomas Norman DeWolf and Sharon Leslie Morgan

The Pathology of White Privilege by Tim Wise (U-tube)

13th    (Netflix documentary)

I am Not Your Negro  (Documentary) 

Places

Center for Civil & Human Rights Museum,
100 Ivan Allen Jr Blvd NW, Atlanta, GA 30313

Center for Racial Healing (Opening October 2017)
Absalom Jones Episcopal Center, 807 Atlanta Student Movement Blvd, Atlanta, GA 30314

Equity for Immigrants

There are numerous readings in the Bible that tell us to love our neighbor and to welcome the stranger. The parable of the Good Samaritan is probably the most well-known. (Luke 10:25-37) Through the parable Jesus instructs us to love everyone, even those who come from a different background or religious affiliation.

There is a lot of debate around the Immigration issue in America.  There are also some commonly held beliefs that are inaccurate such as immigrants drive down wages, immigrants don’t pay taxes, and immigrants have access to social programs. Read more about the “myths”  in this document that was compiled by the Chamber of Commerce of the United States of America.

The detention center in Georgia (Stewart Detention Center) is run by a private organization (CCA) that is paid by the U.S. Government for each detainee for each night that a detainee spends at the detention center.  This payment comes from your federal income tax dollars.

DACA stands for Deferred Action Childhood Arrivals, and is a program for teens and young adults who were brought here as children, to have access to a driver’s license and employment. It is a lengthy and detailed process. The young people who gain DACA status are motivated and desperately trying to do the “right thing”.  Watch a short video about some DACA young people here.

Other resources:

Dying to Live (documentary video)

The Episcopal Church and Immigration Advocacy (one page report from the Office of Government Relations of The Episcopal Church)

The Episcopal Church – advocacy & resources about immigration, including information about DACA, the Sanctuary Movement, a webinar and a video with Presiding Bishop Michael Curry.

El Refugio – a place of hospitality for families visiting loved ones who are detained at Stewart Detention Center. Volunteer to provide transportation, supply provisions, or cook for guests for a weekend.

Our God is Undocumented: Biblical Faith and Immigrant Justice by Chad Myers and Matthew Colwell

The Social Gospel

Christian faith practiced as a call not just to personal conversion, but also to social reform. In other words, we care about injustice and we care for the poor, all while sharing our faith enthusiastically, simply because that’s what Jesus did.

“Therefore, as we have the opportunity, let us do good to all people.”  Galatians 6:10

‘For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, 36 I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.’

 “Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink?38 When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? 39 When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?’ Matthew 25:35-39

Books

The Scandalous Gospel of Jesus by Peter Gomes

Jesus came preaching, but the church wound up preaching Jesus. Why does the church insist upon making Jesus the object of its attention rather than heeding his message? Esteemed Harvard minister Peter J. Gomes believes that excessive focus on the Bible and doctrines about Jesus have led the Christian church astray. “What did Jesus preach?” asks Gomes. To recover the transformative power of the gospel—”the good news”—Gomes says we must go beyond the Bible and rediscover how to live out Jesus’ original revolutionary message of hope.

Strength to Love  by Martin Luther King, Jr.

“If there is one book Martin Luther King, Jr. has written that people consistently tell me has changed their lives, it is Strength to Love.”
So wrote Coretta Scott King. She continued: “I believe it is because this book best explains the central element of Martin Luther King, Jr.’s philosophy of nonviolence: His belief in a divine, loving presence that binds all life. That insight, luminously conveyed in this classic text, here presented in a new and attractive edition, hints at the personal transformation at the root of social justice: ” By reaching into and beyond ourselves and tapping the transcendent moral ethic of love, we shall overcome these evils.”

Faith Beyond Borders: Doing Justice in a Dangerous World by Don Mosley

For more than thirty years, Don Mosley has traveled the globe, working for the cause of justice on behalf of two organizations he helped to found: Habitat for Humanity and Jubilee Partners, a community of believers who have welcomed 3,000 refugees from danger zones around the world. In this book, he uses stories from his remarkable walk of faith to issue an action call for Christians to live out the teachings of Jesus, no matter where they take us or what they require us to do.

A Gospel for the Social Awakening by Walter Rauschenbusch – edited by Benjamin Mays

Walter Rauschenbusch (1861-1918) was a Christian theologian and Baptist minister, and a key figure in the Social Gospel movement in the United States.

Position of the Episcopal Church

The Episcopal Church meets every 3 years as a bicameral legislature called General Convention. This governing body of the Church includes the House of Deputies and the House of Bishops, composed of deputies and bishops from each diocese. During Convention the Church develops policies and legislation on issues ranging from marriage to stewardship of creation to finances for missions, and more. Legislation passed during General Convention becomes the official Position of The Episcopal Church.

Additionally, the Office of Government Relations in Washington, D.C. represents the policy priorities of the Episcopal Church to the U.S. government. From their website:

“We aim to shape and influence policy and legislation on critical issues, highlighting the voices and experiences of Episcopalians and Anglicans globally. All of our work is grounded in the resolutions of General Convention and Executive Council, the legislative and governing bodies of the church. Our current priority areas are refugees and immigration, environmental stewardship, and international development and conflict. We also engage on criminal justice reform, anti-poverty work, and other issues where we can have a unique impact. Attention to issues of racial justice is woven throughout all of our work and guides and informs our engagement.“

The Office is an advocacy organization, and works throughout the national Episcopal Church via the Episcopal Public Policy Network. You can sign up for EPPN email alerts here.

Equality for the LGBTQ Community

In 1976 the General Convention of The Episcopal Church declared that “homosexual persons are children of God who have a full and equal claim with all other persons upon the love, acceptance, and pastoral concern and care of the Church” (1976-A069). Since then, faithful Episcopalians have been working toward a greater understanding and radical inclusion of all of God’s children.

Along the way, The Episcopal Church has garnered a lot of attention, but with the help of organizations such as Integrity USA, the church has continued its work toward full inclusion of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) Episcopalians. In 2003, the first openly gay bishop was consecrated; in 2009, General Convention resolved that God’s call is open to all; in 2012, a provisional rite of blessing for same-gender relationships was authorized, and discrimination against transgender persons in the ordination process was officially prohibited; and in 2015, the canons of the church were changed to make the rite of marriage available to all people, regardless of gender. More information can be found here.

To our lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender brothers and sisters: “The Episcopal Church welcomes you!”

Integrity

A nonprofit organization comprised of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender [LGBT] Episcopalians and straight friends. Since its founding by Dr. Louie Crew in rural Georgia in 1974, Integrity has been the leading grassroots voice for the full inclusion of LGBT persons in the Episcopal Church.

Books:

Encouraging Conversation : Resources for Talking about Same-Sex Blessings – Fredrica Harris Thompsett, Ed.

Other Voices, Other Worlds  – Terry Brown, Ed.

Websites:

Institute for Welcoming Resources website

Georgia Equality website

Believe Outloud website

Oasis Newark website

Capital Punishment

The Issue:

The death penalty has been used and debated all over the world for many years.  Arguments for and against the practice center around the following issues:

  1. Morality
  2. Constitutionality
  3. Deterrence
  4. Retribution
  5. Irrevocable Mistakes
  6. Cost of Death vs. Life in Prison
  7. Race
  8. Closure for Victims’ Families
  9. Attorney Quality
  10. Physicians at Execution

(http://deathpenalty.procon.org/view.resource.php?resourceID=002000)

Capital Punishment in the U.S.:

Currently, a large majority of countries have either abolished or discontinued the practice. The U.S. is the only Western country to still use the death penalty. (https://deathpenaltyinfo.org/documents/FactSheet.pdf)

Position of Christians: 

Christians are divided on this issue citing scripture that

  • mandates capital punishment
  • prohibits capital punishment
  • permits capital punishment

Position of the Episcopal Church:

Since the 1958 General Convention, US Episcopal bishops have maintained a position against the death penalty. (Religious Organizing Against the Death Penalty, Statement of the 1979 General ConferenceThe Archives of the Episcopal Church, The Acts of the Convention 1976-2006, Reaffirm Opposition to Capital Punishment)

Resources:

There are numerous books, articles, etc. on this topic – too many to mention here.  Some of the most current and popular ones include:

Books:

Jesus on Death Row: The Trial of Jesus and American Capital Punishment, Mark Osler, 2009

Just Mercy, A Story of Justice and Redemption, Bryan Stevenson, 2014

Executing Grace:  How the Death Penalty Killed Jesus and Why it’s Killing Us, Shane Claiborne, 2016

A Life for a Life:  The American Debate over the Death Penalty, Michael Dow Burkhead, 2009

Just Revenge: Costs and Consequences of the Death Penalty, Mark Costanzo, 1997

Dead Man Walking, Sister Helen Prejean, 1993

Websites:

https://deathpenaltyinfo.org/history-death-penalty

http://www.ncsc.org/Topics/Criminal/Capital-Punishment/Resource-Guide.aspx

http://library.ship.edu/c.php?g=274962&p=2974296

https://www.questia.com/library/controversial-topics/capital-punishment