The pandemic impacted much over the past few years, and this year it effects how many lay delegates a congregation may send to the diocesan convention. Based on a given year’s in-person Average Sunday Attendance (ASA), the 2023 count should be from the 2021 ASA. However, many congregations had in-person worship for only a part of the year. This means calculating ASA on the whole year would skew the number of delegates unless in-person services had been offered every Sunday of 2021.
In order to have fair representation and not penalize congregations who had fewer in-person services, the diocesan Board of Trustees is allowing congregations to use one of three methods to determine their number of lay delegates to the 2023 Convention.
“In looking at the problem, it was decided to work within the spirit of the constitutional language,” noted Matthew Payne, convention parliamentarian. “The idea is to let a congregation determine ASA based only on those Sunday’s with in-person services.” Payne noted the Parochial Report used for last year’s delegate count already did this.
The first method is to use the technical language of the constitution the ASA reported on the Parochial Report of 2021 figures. The second method in the spirit of the language is to calculate 2021 ASA only on those Sundays with in-person services. If “in-person” was 20, then total the attendance on those Sundays and divide by 20, not 52. The third method is like the second but for services held in 2022.
Election of lay delegates doesn’t change. Many will elect during their Annual Meeting. However, the Board of Trustees encourages their Annual Meetings to pass a resolution either authorizing the Vestry to elect or the priest and wardens to elect. Both are currently allowed. The benefit of shifting election to the Vestry or priest/wardens is that the decision to vote on reunion at this Convention won’t be known until April or May.
Regardless of how the number of delegates are chosen or elected, a certification form is to be submitted to the Diocesan Office by June 22. This form may be found at diofdl.org/convention. For any questions, contact Matthew Payne (920) 830-8866.
200 people gathered on Saturday, October 21, 2017 to celebrate the diocesan family of the Diocese of Fond du Lac. The 143rd Convention was held on the Oneida Reservation just outside of Green Bay. Wondering if “we aren’t being called to cast into the deep,” the Rt. Rev. Matthew Gunter established a focus during the Eucharist held at Church of the Holy Apostles, the oldest Episcopal congregation in the diocese and the State of Wisconsin.
The day started with fellowship and a delightful continental breakfast provided at the Holy Apostles Parish Hall. Attendees then came together for worship in the stone church building, where they heard Bishop Matt preach about the challenges the Church faces today, and encouraging each of us to go deeper, so “we are more likely to experience the awesome, beautiful, goodness of God that transforms” as he reminded the congregation of the original diocesan motto [Duc] In Altum.
Following a short drive from Holy Apostles to the Radisson Conference Center, the business of the day was hearing reports from a variety of ministries, electing those to serve on diocesan committees, discuss and adopt resolutions modifying the constitution and canons of the diocese, and approving the budget for 2018. The Seventh Sunday after Easter (May 13 in 2018) was designated as Companion Diocese Sunday. Last year’s convention established a relationship with the Diocese of Masvingo in Zimbabwe and Bishop Matt announced an invitation has been extended for its representatives to attend the 2018 Convention.
Greetings were received from the Rev. Dr. Brad Hauff, who serves as the Episcopal Church Indigenous Missioner. Attendees browsed over a dozen display tables from diocesan ministries and vendors of liturgical vestments and maple syrup! Giving was encouraged to support the United Thank Offering and the Church Periodical Club. A deficit budget was approved, but with plans in place for funding the deficit.
As one delegate noted in their evaluation “the convention was not what I expected. It was efficiently run, informative and helped me to see how my congregation fits into the work of the church at the diocesan level.” While the purpose of the day was taking care of business, the effect of the day was one that left many with the question “What will you do to go into the deep?”
For more details of the convention, visit diofdl.org/convention.