From the Dean’s Desk: Repairers of the Breach
The Very Reverend Paul Lebens-Englund
“Show me your faith apart from your works, and I by my works will show you my faith”. James 2:18

I'm pleased to report, this week, that Mrs. Suwah Tobah and Mr. Brian Childs have accepted my invitation to serve as co-chairs of the Dean's Special Commission on Racial Reconciliation, which is Saint Mark’s first response to the biddings of both last summer's General Convention of The Episcopal Church in Salt Lake City and last month’s Annual Convention of the Episcopal Church in Minnesota (ECMN) in Faribault. Our Presiding Bishop, the Most Rev. Michael Curry, has identified Racial Reconciliation as one of three focal points for his nine-year term and ECMN has identified Racial Reconciliation as the focal point for ‘Mission Opportunity 2017.’

The creation of the Special Commission is intended to ensure this focal point remains at the forefront of our prayer, learning, and action for those nine years and beyond. To do that effectively, we must discern the Commission's shape, scope, and trajectory intentionally. Your co-chairs and I will meet twice, through late October and early November, to identify and solicit committed and capable individuals to serve as Commission members, and we'll also cast out a scope and sequence for the next 12-18 months of development and groundwork. We anticipate a modest and manageable on-ramp to this vital work, recognizing that centuries of culture and practice will not be meaningfully transformed overnight. Please hold these leaders and their work in your prayers.

For those who wish to share in a generative experience related to this important work ahead, please mark your calendars for Monday, October 10th at 7pm at Plymouth Congregational Church in downtown Minneapolis. Plymouth Church is pleased to be hosting the Rev. William Barber (of recent DNC fame) and the Rev. James Forbes for an evening revival as part of their national tour in which they're seeking to re-energize the nation's hearts and minds and revitalize the language of social justice in and among our communities of faith. Reverend Barber is founder of the organization Repairers of the Breach and Reverend Forbes is Senior Minister Emeritus of Riverside Church in New York City.

Everyone is welcome and encouraged to attend—and, in fact, if you have friends who are engaged in this good work and who are intrigued by the role and responsibility of people of faith in addressing it, please bring them along, as well. The evening promises to be engaging and inspiring, uniting people of common cause for the sake of the Common Good.