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New Church Plant: Grace Parish, North Myrtle Beach PDF Print E-mail
Bishop to Visit New Church Plant in North Myrtle Beach

North Myrtle Beach, SC, November 5, 2013 – Bishop Mark J. Lawrence, the 14th Bishop of the Diocese of South Carolina will be in North Myrtle Beach on Sunday, November 10 for the official launching of a new church.

Grace Parish is the newest congregation in the Diocese of South Carolina. Bishop Lawrence, will commission the church plant team and perform a service of confirmation at 3 p.m. at the J. Bryan Floyd Community Center at 1030 Possum Trot Road in North Myrtle Beach.

“We may be small,” says Vicar Linda Manuel, who leads the parish locally, “But our God is big, and we believe that small things done with great love will change the world!”

Manuel found herself leading the small group of worshippers when they were left without a church home.  Most had belonged to St. Stephen’s, North Myrtle Beach but didn’t feel comfortable staying with it after the church voted to separate from the Diocese of South Carolina and stay with the theologically liberal Episcopal Church.

At first the group began meeting in homes. Then they were offered the use of a chapel in Lee Funeral Home. “They were wonderful at Lee, but we decided we needed additional space to grow and wanted to be able to offer Bible Studies and outreach events during the week,” says Vicar Manuel.

The Community Center is surrounded by condos, and a golf course. “The space is working great for us,” says Manuel. “Everyone is pitching in, bringing items from home. Other churches have been helpful, too. Prince George – Winyah in Georgetown has been wonderful to us. They’ve given us altar linens and hangings,” says Manuel.

In addition to Sunday worship at 9 a.m. Grace offers a co-ed weekly Wednesday Bible Study from 3:30 – 5 p.m. in the Community Center rotunda.  “We’re beginning to reach out,” says Manuel, “focusing on evangelism and sharing our faith. In all that we do, we pray we will exalt the Risen Lord Jesus, and offer to others the place of acceptance, love, hope and forgiveness that we have found.”

This coming Sunday, November 10, they will not be having their regular 9 a.m. service instead asking everyone to come at 3 p.m. for the Bishop’s visit.

“I am gratified by the progress Grace Parish is making,” says Bishop Lawrence. “This is what we need to be about as a diocese—growing existing congregations and planting new ones.  This commissioning service will focus on the chief work that lies ahead for this new congregation, to grow Christ’s church with transformed souls not merely transferred members.”
Bishop Lawrence Writes from Marsabit, Northern Kenya PDF Print E-mail
Allison with friends at Archers Post Anglican ChurchWhile the Imam’s call to prayer sounded earlier just below my full consciousness, it was the buzzing of a thick-bodied Wood Boring Bee that finally awakened me and ushered me into the various morning sounds of Marsabit—bird songs, cock crows, the wind in the trees outside my window, a faint voice or two from the town in the distance, and the ringing of the church bell.  Six o’clock.  I get up and freshen myself, make a cup of instant coffee and say Morning Prayer in the quietness of the house.  How I’ve missed this time alone with You, Lord, this past week [while at GAFCON].

Now after a pleasant breakfast with Bishop Rob, his wife, Sue, and Allison, I sit out on their porch enjoying the garden and the cool late morning breeze and scrawl a few sentences in this journal.  A white breasted Pie Crow caws from a tall thin-leafed tree where I notice a nest in the upper branches and a slightly moving head of a mother bird apparently brooding over her eggs or young.  Is this emblematic of Your Holy Spirit this morning brooding over us—I wonder?  The red bougainvillea beside the yellow-green flax,  the cane brake, and the purple and white Inpatients against the red earth might just as well be the Southwestern United States—but, “No”, I tell myself, “this  is Northern Kenya” and the tall, colorfully beaded women I saw yesterday at worship in Archers Post Anglican Church, stunning in their vibrant song and dance; the six various tribes and tongues represented in the small yet crowded church; the young African children delighting in our presence and reaching out their hands to greet us—even laughing as Allison put her white arm parallel with their black ones; the long arduous drive on the dirt road, the Land Rover jostling us about for hours; the herds of sheep, cattle and camels we passed along the way with the young African boys shepherding them, and the occasional warrior in colorful fabrics and feathers, dramatic against their lean bare black shoulders and chests, walking in stately stride with their weapon of choice at their side; all somewhat dream-like in my memory, yet calling me back to gratitude and prayer.

Read it all.

GAFCON II: "We are not alone." A Brief Q & A with the Rev. Bob Lawrence PDF Print E-mail

“They know us and pray for us: We are not alone”

The Rev. Bob LawrenceA Brief Q&A with the Rev. Bob Lawrence on day two of GAFCON II in Kenya

Q: I understand you traveled with Bishop and Allison Lawrence and Greg Snyder. How did the four of you find traveling together, any interesting travel moments or incidents?

A: Travel together was fun. We had layovers in both Boston and Amsterdam with opportunities to share meals, explore a few shops, and to guard one another's luggage while waiting.  In Amsterdam we ran into quite a few folks that were also en route to GAFCON so that provided a great opportunity to greet old friends and make new ones.
Diocese of South Carolina Participates in GAFCON II PDF Print E-mail
Bishops and Archbishops attending GAFCON gather for official photograph

Please keep all who are attending the second Global Anglican Future Conference (GAFCON II) in Nairobi in your prayers. GAFCON is an international gathering of Christians representing the majority of the world's Anglicans. The first conference took place in Jerusalem in 2008, and became a rallying point for unity within an otherwise fractured Communion.There are over 1,300 Archbishops, Bishops, clergy and lay people from almost 40 countries attending. There are 331 bishops present, of whom 30 are Archbishops.

Bishop Mark Lawrence, his wife Allison Lawrence, the Rev. Bob Lawrence and the Rev. Greg Snyder are attending from the Diocese of South Carolina.

Links to several GAFCON news sources may be found here and here. Visit our Facebook page for GAFCON updates from our delegates.
SC Judge Rejects TEC's Request to Remove Injunction Protecting Diocesan Names and Seal PDF Print E-mail

Diocese's Names, Symbols, Seal are Protected by Judge, Who Denies the Denomination's Efforts to Seize Them

St. George, SC, October 11, 2013 – South Carolina Circuit Judge Diane S. Goodstein today ruled in favor of the Diocese of South Carolina’s position that her injunction, which prohibits The Episcopal Church (TEC) and the Episcopal Church in South Carolina (ECSC) from using the names and seal of the Diocese of South Carolina, should remain in place.

Judge Goodstein issued the injunction and temporary restraining order in January.

“I’m not going to disturb the injunction,” she said.  The judge said it will remain in place to protect the diocese’s duly registered marks. Under South Carolina civil law those are entitled to protection.
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