Making community and connection through cooperation, A Message from Bishop Diana

Making community and connection through cooperation, A Message from Bishop Diana

Dear Friends in Christ,

Last week Oregon Episcopal School (OES) welcomed its students onto campus for the beginning of the school year. It was energizing and fun to be with them and to give the final blessing, but the high point was the ritual bellringing by the 5th graders. Each student walked up into the bell tower and pulled on the rope to ring the bell. One student, one peal of the bell; one for each year that OES has been open – that’s 152 years in 2021. 

I love being on a school campus – it reminds me of my many years on college campuses serving as dean of religious life. The air is thick with promise, dreams, and aspirations on campuses like OES.  The faculty and administration reflect that same ideal: what more can we learn? Be? Do? And: how can we do it together – helping each other along the way?

After the 5th graders arrived for the ceremony, they stood with their arms outstretched to make sure they were at a safe distance from each other. Then they plopped down on the cold hard sidewalk to wait for the opening words. Watching them, I commented to Mo, the Head of School, standing next to me, “I remember well those days when sitting, cross-legged on cold hard concrete was just another way to rest!” We chuckled with admiration.

Driving back to the office, I reflected on the image of the 5th graders with their arms outstretched.  They cooperated in observing the COVID protocols with laughter and chatter – not because the protocols brought them joy but because they were finally together and were going to sit in classes with their friends. The joy of being back in community was palpable that morning. For the grown-ups, their joy that day came from witnessing the results of their hard work to create a safe way to be in community. For the students, it was about cooperating, happily, because being together means you get to have fun learning with friends, while also making your school pal laugh at your antics.

Making community and connection through cooperation — this is where the greatest joy is often experienced. We’ve learned this in new and unwelcome ways this past year and a half. The point really is learning it; our capacity to adapt, pivot, and remain open to one another teaches us new ways to be present to each other. Although we are now beyond tired of the ways this pandemic imposes restrictions on us, we have also learned some about our creativity and cooperation – the human desire for community is God-given. We are created to seek out each other in community and to adjust and make sacrifices in order to build relationships that will change us. Truly, this has always been God’s plan for us – to find one another, to love one another, and to challenge one another to be more of what we have been created to be. 

“Beloved, let us love one another, for love is of God; and everyone who loves is
born of God and knows God.” (1 John 4:7)

Amidst our heartbreak and anxiety and frustration, God loves us. This is not passive loving, it is a loving that continues to form us. We are being remade, through this incomprehensible divine love, for one another, and to bring into this world the Beloved Community of God’s desiring.  

As we prepare for another virtual Diocesan Convention/Annual Meeting, I pray that our patience and forbearance are not marked by gritted teeth, but instead by the love that embraces us during our great discomfort. 

I can still see those 5th graders standing next to each other with their arms outstretched. By cooperating as a community, they can reach toward each other with anticipation and joy. The Holy Spirit prevails as community is formed in yet a new way!


Bishop Diana

Nominations for Diocesan Leadership Positions now open!

En Español

Do you want to help support the mission and ministry of the Diocese of Oregon? Should you or someone in the Diocese you know help shape the future of The Episcopal Church in Western Oregon? Who is at the table matters when decisions are being made. Please stand for election or nominate someone to stand for election for one of our governing bodies:

Standing Committee

One clergy for a four-year term
One layperson for a four-year term

The Standing Committee advises the Bishop and gives consent in matters of the disposition of property, ecclesiastical discipline, the election and consecration of bishops, and in the matter of candidates for ordained ministry. The Standing Committee meets monthly online for now due to COVID-19 restrictions. The Standing Committee, Board of Trustees, & Diocesan Council meet together three times a year. 

Board of Trustees

One clergy for a three-year term
One layperson for a three-year term

The Board of Trustees act within bounds set by the Bishop, the Convention, and the Standing Committee to steward the funds and property entrusted to the diocese. The Finance Committee of the Diocese, appointed by the Board of Trustees, conducts ongoing review of all financial transactions in the diocese. The trustees meet the last Thursday of the month online for now due to COVID-19 restrictions. The Board of Trustees, Standing Committee, & Diocesan Council meet together three times a year. 

Diocesan Council

Two clergy for three-year terms
Two laypeople for three-year terms

The Diocesan Council oversees the creation of a budget each year and has authority to create and prescribe the duties of program ministries and committees in support of the mission of the Church in the diocese. Council members visit congregations. Council meets monthly online for now due to COVID-19 restrictions. The Diocesan Council, Standing Committee, & Board of Trustees meet together three times a year.  

Trinity Cathedral Chapter

One person for a three-year term

The Trinity Cathedral Chapter includes one person from the diocese elected annually. The Chapter meets three times a year in Portland to facilitate communication between the Diocese and the Cathedral, to seek alignment between Cathedral and Diocesan vision, and to ascertain ways in which the Cathedral congregation and other congregations of the diocese may relate in positive and helpful ways.

Training Requirements

All clergy and lay leaders elected to serve in leadership in the Diocese of Oregon are expected to be current in, or completed within one year of their election, the following trainings: 

  • Safeguarding God’s Children and Safeguarding God’s People: Preventing Sexual Exploitation & Harassment(both offered online, for free, must be renewed every five years)
  • Dismantling Racism Training (offered several times per year; now available in two formats: a one-day, face-to-face format, fee $25 per person; OR a four-session, online training, fee $10 per person; must be renewed every 10 years). 

Further information about these requirements is available on the diocesan website or by contacting The Rev. Canon Carol Sedlacek:

To Make a Nomination

To nominate yourself, another person, or if you were nominated by someone else for one of these positions, please complete the following form. The deadline for submission is July 8, 2021

La Candidatura para un puesto de Liderazgo Diocesano, ¡está abierta! 

¿Quiere ayudar apoyando a la misión y el ministerio de la Diócesis de Oregon? ¿Usted o alguien que conozca en la Diócesis, le gustaría ayudar a moldear el futuro de la Iglesia Episcopal, en el oeste de Oregon?  Es muy importante formar parte de los que toman decisiones. Anímese a ser candidato o nomine a alguien para las elecciones de alguno de los organismos de gobierno diocesanos:

Comité Permanente

Un Clérigo por un periodo de cuatro años
Un Laico por un periodo de cuatro años

El Comité Permanente Es Consejo asesor del Obispo y da su consentimiento en asuntos de         disposición de bienes, disciplina eclesiástica, elección y consagración de obispos y en materia          de candidatos al ministerio ordenado. El Comité Permanente se reúne mensualmente en       línea, por ahora, debido a las restricciones de COVID-19. El Comité Permanente, El Consejo de    Fideicomiso y el Consejo Diocesano se reúnen juntos tres veces al año.

Consejo de Fideicomiso

Un Clérigo por un periodo de tres años
Un Laico por un periodo de tres años

El Consejo de Fideicomiso es un organismo que toma decisiones dentro de los límites establecidos por el Obispo, la Convención y el Comité Permanente, para administrar los fondos y bienes confiados a la diócesis. El Comité de Finanzas de la Diócesis, designado por el Consejo de Fideicomiso, realiza una revisión continua de todas las transacciones financieras en la diócesis. Este Consejo se reúne el último jueves del mes, en línea por ahora, debido a las restricciones de COVID-19. El Consejo de Fideicomiso, el Comité Permanente y el Consejo Diocesano se reúnen juntos tres veces al año.

Consejo Diocesano

Dos Clérigos por un periodo de tres años
Dos Laicos por un periodo de tres años

El Consejo Diocesano este organismo supervisa la creación del presupuesto Diocesano Anual y tiene la autoridad para crear y prescribir los deberes de los ministerios y comités de programas para el apoyo de la misión de la Iglesia en la diócesis. Los miembros del consejo visitan a las congregaciones. El consejo se reúne mensualmente, en línea por ahora, debido a las restricciones de COVID-19. El Consejo Diocesano, el Comité Permanente y El Consejo de    Fideicomiso se reúnen juntos tres veces al año.

El Capítulo de la Catedral de la Trinidad

Una Persona por un periodo de tres años

El Capítulo de la Catedral de la Trinidad este organismo incluye una persona de la diócesis elegida anualmente. El Capítulo se reúne tres veces al año en Portland para facilitar la comunicación entre la Diócesis y la Catedral, para buscar continuidad entre la visión de la Catedral y la Diocesana, y para determinar las formas en que la congregación de la Catedral y otras congregaciones de la diócesis puedan relacionarse de manera positiva y útil.

Requisitos de formación

Se espera que todos los líderes del clero y laicos, elegidos para servir en el liderazgo en la Diócesis de Oregon, estén al día o que terminen durante el primer año de su elección, las siguientes capacitaciones:

  • Salvaguardando a los hijos de Dios y salvaguardando al pueblo de Dios: prevenir la explotación y el acoso sexual (ambos se ofrecen en línea, de forma gratuita, deben renovarse cada cinco años)
  • Capacitación sobre el desmantelamiento del racismo (ofrecida varias veces al año; ahora disponible en dos formatos: un formato presencial de un día, tarifa de $ 25 por persona; o una capacitación en línea de cuatro sesiones, tarifa de $ 10 por persona; debe ser renovada cada 10 años).

Para más información sobre estos requisitos, que están disponibles en el sitio web diocesano, puede contactar a la Rev. Canóniga Carol Sedlacek:

Para Nominar a un Candidato

Para nominarse a sí mismo, a otra persona, o si ud. fue nominado por otra persona para uno de estos puestos, complete el siguiente formulario. La fecha límite para enviar su nominación es el 8 de julio de 2021.