All posts by kanite

Is anybody out there?

Hi everyone. I am checking on whether the email delivery system is working, that alerts those who have subscribed to the blog that a new post has been uploaded.

My last two posts got zero opens, which may just reflect my popularity (if this is the case I do not want to know about it), but since I did not get any notices to the several emails I have used to subscribe with (all with the intent of verifying the system works), I am trying again and hoping I have fixed the problem.

General Convention starts soon and I wanted the blog to be active and accessible so need to figure this out. Please comment or email me if you are a subscriber and you received a notice about this post. Or if you read this post but did not receive a notice when you have received them in the past please let me know. Thanks everyone. My email is


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Preparing for General Convention

GC81 begins June 21st in Louisville, KY

Five deputies from the Diocese of the Central Gulf Coast (DIOCGC) traveled to beautiful Kanuga Camp and Conference Center in the mountains of Western N. Carolina for Province IV Synod, May 8-10. I was joined by Joe McDaniel, Eugene Johnston, Jill Showers Chow, and John Talbert.

It’s a long drive to Kanuga, especially when you consider going through Atlanta is about the only way from here. Several of us experienced quite the challenge on the way up, as an accident and a high speed chase had I-85 north of Atlanta shut down for quite a while. After a strange and winding detour, we got back on 85 just before the South Carolina line, and then made it to Kanuga just in time for the opening reception and worship service.

Province IV incorporates most of the dioceses of the Episcopal Church in the southern and southeastern states. There are 20 dioceses in the Province, making Province IV the largest geographical province, and I believe also the province with the most church members. Lay and Clergy deputies were joined by the bishops of the respective dioceses for the Synod.

Province IV Synod meets a month or two before each General Convention. We have a variety of programming, elections of Provincial officers as well as lay and clergy representatives to the Executive Council, the body which serves sort of as the Vestry for the Episcopal Church in between General Conventions. DIOCGC is very well represented on the Executive Council. Lay Deputy Joe McDaniel was elected to a six year term at the 2022 General Convention (GC meets every 3 years but the 2021 convention was postponed a year due to Covid). And at the Synod our own Lay Deputy, Jill Showers Chow, was elected to a six year term as the Lay member from Province IV! Congratulations to Joe and Jill!

Usually at Synod, the Province will deal with resolutions to be sent to General Convention (resolutions can come from a Province, from a Diocese, from the House of Bishops, from an interim body such as a Task Force or Standing Committee created by GC, or from the House of Deputies (with a minimum of 3 deputies sponsoring the resolution). EVERY submitted resolution is assigned to a legislative committee, which will hold hearings (these are online now) and take action on the resolutions, which are then sent to the floor of each house (Bishops or Deputies). However, there was confusion from the Episcopal Church General Convention office to our provincial officers, who had been told the date of Synod is past the deadline for submitting resolutions to this year’s GC, so no resolutions were dealt with. We found out at Synod, via former DIOCGC priest Steve Pankey, who is deeply involved in the Rules of Order which govern such things, that this understanding was not correct, the only deadline for submitting resolutions is the 2nd legislative day of GC itself. This was a disappointing turn of events, but those interested in Provincial supported resolutions have other means to submit their resolutions by that date.

I know this is a lot of detail and few of my tremendous number of blog readers (j/k of course) may be interested in all this minutia, so my feelings are not hurt if you skip a lot of this!

Synod is also a wonderful time to catch up with old friends across the church. This is my 7th time to serve on a General Convention deputation – 4 times from the Diocese of Mississippi and 3 times from DIOCGC, where I have been honored each time to serve as the Deputation Chair. So I know a lot of these folks from previous conventions, as well as seminary classmates and a whole host of others whom I met through our disaster recovery experience following Hurricane Katrina. So despite Atlanta traffic, it was worth the whirlwind drive over Wednesday and back home Friday travel nightmare.

I plan to update this blog each day/night of General Convention. Along with some important resolutions I will be commenting on, at this GC the House of Bishops will elect our next Presiding Bishop, as the Most Reverend Michael Curry’s term ends this year. The PB serves a 9 year term. Bishop Curry has been a shining light for our church on the world stage. If you haven’t ever watched him preach, please go to YouTube and check it out, he is an amazing preacher, a kind soul, and a wonderful spokesperson for our church.

Stay tuned around June 20 or 21st for more updates. If you have questions or interests you would like me to comment on, please leave those in the comment section! God bless y’all!

Zoom Bible Study opportunity

One of our main focuses at St. Simon’s is helping each other become better disciples of Jesus. The study of the Scriptures is a primary path to becoming a better disciple of our Lord. During  the Great 50 Days of Easter season, I will be offering a four week study of 1st Peter, a powerful letter from the disciple Peter to churches persecuted and scattered all over the known world, and a letter with great meaning to us today.

All are welcome to our bible studies as they are presented in person (usually in the Parish Hall) and on Zoom (links are below), with a morning offering at 10:30am and an evening offering at 6pm. We will begin the study of 1st Peter on Tuesday, April 9th

You are encouraged to invite others to join us, no matter their church status. I am also including below a link to previous Bible study videos, feel free to share this link as well.

I know many of the followers of this blog have been part of previous Bible studies at other churches. I do hope any interested will join us for this study of 1st Peter.

For anyone wanting to join the classes, you can come in person (bring a Bible but if you forget we have plenty), or join on Zoom, and if you are new to our Bible studies at St. Simon’s, PLEASE send me your email address so I can add you to the weekly reminder email we send out. My email is: [email protected]

God bless and may your Easter season be joyous.

Fr. David+

The zoom links are the same each week

Zoom link for morning class:

Zoom link for evening class:

Website for videos of previous classes:

New Year, New Post

Gosh it is hard to believe a new year has started! Looking at my blog I am embarrassed I have gone so long since posting. So, no, I have not made a New Year’s Resolution to post more frequently, but I really do want to try to. I want to try some different kinds of writing, and your brutally honest critique is welcomed and needed. So hang in there with me friends!

It is New Year’s Day. A year ago today I was admitted to the hospital in Gulf Breeze for acute pancreatitis, caused by a medication I was on. Having had pancreatitis one other time, ten years ago, I knew it was back as far back as November of 2022. The pain was intense but I had a special Thanksgiving to celebrate at our middle child’s newly rebuilt and remodeled home on the coast of Mississippi, then I had the silent retreat my last several posts were about, and I needed that in such a visceral way I just couldn’t skip it. Of course, then it was time for the rest of Advent, then Christmas and New Year’s so I figured I would just tough it out until that was all over with. I did have blood work before Christmas (2022) that confirmed it was pancreatitis, so Jennifer and I knew what eventually would happen. We went to the ER on January 1st, 2023, after church, where I was admitted for a week.

Basically the only treatment for an acute bout is to be hospitalized for IV fluids and pain management. You cannot eat or drink ANYTHING, as it would cause the pancreas to act up, and mine was angry. I wasn’t a lot better when I left but wanted to get back to church and not miss a Sunday. So I did. By early February I was no better, so another week in the hospital was the ticket.

Since then I have had multiple scans, scopes and the like. Had to make a major change to some medications and deal with a lot of gastro issues, which occasionally affected how much time I could spend at the church during the week. Slowly my labs and symptoms improved over the summer, through it all I lost 45 pounds, the rapidness of the initial loss was concerning of course. I have two cysts on my pancreas but they are very small and have not grown any, we just have to keep an eye on them.

My family has been incredibly supportive through all this year of medical issues. I am forever grateful to have their care and love and prayers, and blessed by their unique gifts and offerings of sacrificial love – and I am also grateful for the prayers of many of the St. Simon’s family and others whom I have known throughout my life.

The last 12 months saw a lot of milestones. In December of 2022 I celebrated the 20th anniversary of my ordination to the priesthood. Man, that triggered a LOT of memories. In June I turned 65 (how is that possible), and in September, Jennifer and I celebrated our 40th anniversary with a two week cruise! On the way to our cruise we stopped at a friend’s home in Palm Beach where 3 priests I attended seminary with and spouses put together an amazing and moving celebration for Jennifer and I, where we renewed our marriage vows in the chapel of Bethesda by the Sea. Thank you so much Tim and Bryna, Todd, and Bill and Sue! I am so happy to be reconnected with seminary friends, to be honest it’s hard to have friends in this “business” and I treasure my seminary buddies and others along the way.

Happy New Year everyone! May 2024 be filled with good health, laughter, and joy in Christ. I hope to write again soon!

Reflections Mid-Retreat

What to focus on while on retreat
We retreatants spend a lot of time in our rooms, when not participating in the prayer hours, eating, or walking. As I mentioned I brought with me about a dozen books, hoping to focus on one or two while here. Monday night I thumbed through them all, picking out chapters or passages, actively praying that God would say – “read that one, David, that’s one you need!”. But I sensed instead something different from God, perhaps a slight chuckle, then a shouted (not audible of course) suggestion – “David, don’t read. Write. Or at least do both”. This encounter changed my “plans”, so I have focused on Eugene Peterson’s memoir, “The Pastor”, and “Life on the Vine” by Philip Kennison – we read this book in seminary, and it is one of the few books I rebought after I lost my entire theological library to Hurricane Katrina, and high time I returned to it. It is a book about being, truly being, a Christian community in a culture that is becoming increasingly not at all about Jesus, and this includes many churches and church leaders. While reading I am making notes and praying about what I am learning or re-learning and how to apply it in my own life and ministry, and in the church I have been called to shepherd. And, as you can see, writing a lot. How do any of y’all feel about me trying to spend more time writing? I would love your feedback.

I told the people of St. Simon’s that I would be praying for each of them, and I am. I have a directory and have divided it up in order to spend time praying for each individual and family, for our ministries, and for our staff. Tuesday night in the chapel alone, I also spent much prayer time for Jennifer and all of my family.

Specific Prayer for St. Simon’s

Knowing our parish is going to be dealing with some challenging “opportunities” regarding our physical plant and financial realities, I spent a lot of prayer time wondering about how we can corporately pray about this. There is no need at this point to go into the challenges on this blog, but perhaps I will at a later date. I am not anxious about any of this and doing my best to trust in God and in our people. To that end, here is a prayer I offered for all of us to begin praying at our Sunday, January 1st service. Join us if you are so inclined:

“Send us your Spirit, Lord, that we may learn what you would have us do, and the words and witness you would have us offer. Guide us as we continue your work. Show us the field in which to plant, that your Kingdom may come and your power revealed in this community, to the glory of your Name. AMEN”