News in the Diocese for the Month of January 2023

Diocese of Springfield January E-Newsletter

January 10, 2023 – Epiphanytide

PDF Version: Diocese of Springfield January E-News

From Emmanuel Memorial Champaign

Emmanuel Memorial Champaign is pleased to announce the naming of our interim priest, the Reverend Fred Robinson. Most recently Fr. Robinson and his wife, Linda, come from Tampa Florida where he served as interim at St. John’s Church. Prior to that he served as rector of Church of the Redeemer in Sarasota, Florida for 20+ years. Father Robinson’s first Sunday at Emmanuel will be January 15. He will lead Emmanuel during the search process to call the next rector. We look forward to giving the Robinsons a warm welcome!


Emmanuel is always glad to welcome members of DREAAM (Driven to Reach Excellence and Academic Achievement for Males) to volunteer at the church. DREAAM is part of the Champaign blueprint for violence prevention and is a grass root organization begun in 2015. Girls were added to the program in 2020. Emmanuel has partnered with DREAAM to provide volunteer opportunities on both sides. Members of Emmanuel serve as tutors in the after-school and summer programs. Recently the young men came to help with the church’s sack lunch program and then loaded Deacon Chris’s car with diapers collected during Adventto be donated to a local diaper bank.




Please join us in welcoming Gerry Smith, our new treasurer for the Diocese. He has been a part of Christ the King, Normal since its formation as a mission in 1978. Gerry has served in several parish leadership positions including Senior Warden five times as well as multiple volunteer positions.

He has served on the Diocesan level in several positions including Standing Committee (currently & previously 2008-2010), Commission on Ministry (06’-09’), Deanery Representative, Synod delegate (7 times), four different terms on Diocesan Council, co-chair of Department of Mission (16’-19’), and lay deputy at General Convention four times.

Gerry was married to his wife, Linda, who passed away in March 2019. They have four adult children: Gerry III, Tony, Lindsay, and Ashley. He retired from State Farm Insurance in Bloomington after almost 20 years as a Software Solution Developer. Previously, he was an Electrical Maintenance Director at Clinton Power Station for 16 years and a former Navy Submariner.


The College for Bishops is offering spring training on stewardship called Project Resource. “Project Resource trainings equip stewardship teams to plan and develop year-round stewardship ministries that can be replicated and adapted for years to come. Churches that get the most out of Project Resource have been intentional about including their clergy, stewardship committee members, staff, and other committed lay leaders. It is not a curriculum. Project Resource is a way of understanding stewardship as a ministry, essential for the spiritual health of individuals and communities. It is a way of learning to be in right relationship to the resources in our hands (”

For more information please visit


This event was held on December 3rd at the Cathedral of St. Paul in Springfield. The Cathedral was so beautifully decorated for Christmas. Families brought their children to meet St. Nicholas. Each child received a goodie bag with a coloring book and crayons, depicting the Real Santa, along with candy and popcorn. Hot Chocolate was served for in the Café. Each family got their picture taken for free with St. Nicholas. The event was very successful, and we had about 100 people in attendance.


On March 10-12, 2023, the Cathedral Church of St. Paul (815 South Second Street Springfield, IL) will hold their St. Benedict Conference. For more information please call 217-544-5134 or email


Bishop Burgess is pleased to announce that The Reverend Fr. Michael K. Marsh has accepted his invitation to be with us for the annual pre-Lenten clergy retreat as a retreat leader. Fr. Marsh serves as rector of St. Philip’s Episcopal Church in Uvalde, Texas, the exact parish where on May 24th a horrific mass shooting of school children within Robb Elementary School took place. Fr. Marsh is a prolific blogger (Interrupting the Silence), a celebrated preacher, a devout parish priest, and a pastoral presence that remains saturated in prayer. Fr. Marsh is a reconciling presence within a community that is wrapped in anger, hurt, disappointment and fear. He is a graduate of the University of Texas, El Paso (BA), Texas Tech University (JD), and the University of the South, Sewanee (MDiv). In addition to serving as rector of St. Philip’s in Uvalde, he also serves as adjunct faculty at the Seminary of the Southwest in Austin. Clergy: please plan to be with us at Toddhall Retreat Center in Columbia beginning Monday, February 13th through Wednesday, February 15th for a time of prayer, reflection, vocational fellowship, silence, sacramental confession, and spiritual reflection.

ECW Save the Date

The Episcopal Church Women will have their Lenten Retreat March 24-26, 2023.
The retreat will be held at Toddhall (320 Todd Center Dr, Columbia, IL 62236). Bishop Brian K. Burgess will be the keynote speaker and Claudia Byrne will be the guest worship leader on Saturday evening. There will be discussions about changing women’s roles in the church, time for exploring, and opportunities for conversation with new or experienced faces! We hope you will join us.


The Twelfth Night Celebration at St. Christopher’s in Rantoul was a success with over 100 hats, gloves, scarves, and socks given away to the community. There were around 60 children in attendance listening to the nativity story, making crafts, and breaking pinata!


For our most up-to-date calendar information please click here

For our newest first-quarter prayer calendar information please click here


The Episcopal Church Camp of Illinois 2023 will be held on the campus of Camp Wartburg in Waterloo, Illinois from June 17th through June 24th. This year’s summer camp will take on a new look with a new direction including plans for fellowship, worship, learning, games, challenges, and growing in God’s grace. More information is to follow as the Camp Board finalizes the plans for camp this year. Although heavy winter jackets and snow shovels are the order of the day today, it won’t be long until shorts and t-shirts are packed for our time together at Camp Wartburg. “We’ll see ya in Waterloo.”


If you are located in the Eastern Deanery, check out the new Facebook page where you can keep up to date and connect with one another. The purpose of the page is to help all the parishes in this Deanery stay connected to one another. An upcoming event can be shared on this page so that all parishes in the area can be invited to participate. Follow the page here.


Province V is hosting a Human Trafficking Prevention Day event on January 11, 2023, at 6 pm (CT). “Join us to pray to end human trafficking. Hear from trafficking survivors. Learn about resources available across the province (and country) and how you might take action.” Register for this online prayer service here.

Click here to learn more about human trafficking prevention.

Please pray for those in our Diocese who are pursuing Holy Orders:

Parker Asplin, Postulant – Trinity, Lincoln, Pete Sherman, Postulant – St. Luke’s, Springfield, Danny Shuler, Postulant – St. Thomas, Salem

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