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Thursday, July 02, 2020
Dearly beloved in Christ,
The global coronavirus pandemic, COVID-19, continues to produce a severe impact on our lives, our Churches, our clergy, our faithful, our families, and our Dioceses and Province. We have just received news that the hotel chosen to host our 2020 Diocesan and Provincial Synods is canceling our meetings, a decision based on recent directives from the government of North Carolina. It has been determined that All Saints’ Church, Mills River, will not be able to accommodate the 80 or more people who planned to attend Synod at its facilities; it is no longer possible for All Saints’ parish to comply with the imposed restrictions, social distancing, and additional directives from the Governor of North Carolina.
Given the extreme circumstances in which we are placed by the pandemic, we have made the difficult but necessary decision to postpone the Diocese of the Eastern United States (DEUS) 2020 Synod in addition to the previously announced postponement of the Provincial Synod and alternatives for the DMA and DOW Synods. We now plan instead to meet in 2021 in Atlanta, Georgia. The next Synods will be sponsored by Saint Barnabas Church, Dunwoody, Georgia. If the pandemic situation improves, and alternative plans can be safely put in place for our clergy, our lay delegates, and our families, we shall consider a date earlier than the summer of 2021 for the rescheduling of the Synods. We have considered other options for our 2020 meetings, and have subsequently decided that there is, at this time, no other practicable solution.
The hotel has canceled all reservations under our group, so there is no need to call and cancel your reservation. Registration fees for the Synods will be refunded to you – information on that process is forthcoming.
In order to plan for the coming year’s DEUS Diocesan budget, we will be sending out an email notice in the next 2 weeks to the DEUS churches regarding the process for our parishes and missions to submit their financial pledges. We are working on a method that will be as effective and convenient as possible.
In the interim, the necessary business of the Diocese of the Eastern United States will be conducted by the Standing Committee (SC) on behalf of the Diocesan Synod until the next Synod can be safely rescheduled and convened. The Standing Committee will hold its next regularly scheduled meeting on Tuesday, August 4, by Zoom in order to conduct the business of the Diocese.
The DEUS Board of Examining Chaplains (BEC) will conduct its business, examinations, and interviews by Zoom on the same dates as originally scheduled, Monday, August 3, and Tuesday, August 4. All those to be examined or interviewed will receive information about connecting with the BEC (and SC if applicable) via Zoom at the times already scheduled. Zoom details will be shared with those participants in the near future.
We offer our profound thanks and gratitude to Archdeacon Erich Zwingert and the entire congregation of All Saints’ Church, Mills River, for their hard work and dedication in preparing for this year’s Synods. We look forward to another Synod hosted by All Saints’ Church in the future.
Let us all continue to pray for our beloved Church, for our faithful, and our nation and world.
The Most Reverend Walter H. Grundorf, D.D.
The Right Reverend Chandler Holder Jones, SSC
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