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Diocesan Office News

NEW Lay Preaching License Program!

We at the Episcopal Diocese of Louisiana are proud to offer a pathway to obtain a Lay Preaching License! Bishop Duckworth is excited to support this new ministry and sees this licensing program as one more way we can honor and raise up the gifts of our parishioners and empower the lay leaders in our church! We welcome you into this time of discernment and study and promise our prayers and support as you navigate this program!

We are accepting applications until Monday, August 5, 2024.

Application Packet

Community of Deacons Spring Gathering

EDOLA's Community of Deacons held a Spring Gathering June 1at the Solomon Episcopal Conference Center to distil their findings from a series of deanery meetings that centered on community engagement. For more information, Contact The Ven. Charles deGravelles 225-223-0607 Charlie.degravelles@gmail.com

Distilling Meetings on “Who Is My Neighbor” Is Focus of Deacon Spring Gathering Louisiana’s Community of Deacons gathered June 1 at the Solomon Episcopal Conference Center to distill their findings from a series of “Sacagawea Meetings” held during the Spring with the six deaneries of the diocese. “What we discovered was a growing enthusiasm for community engagement within parishes,” according to Archdeacon Charles deGravelles, “but also, in some churches, an uncertainty about the best way to engage. Many congregations would like to be doing more; they’re just not sure how to get started or the best way to direct the needed resources.”

“Each of our meetings revolved around the question Jesus posed: ‘Who is my neighbor?’” deGravelles said. “Of course, Jesus’ answer to that question, conveyed in the Parable of the Good Samaritan, is that our neighbors are both those in need, and those who are willing to reach out to help the needy. But who, exactly, that needy neighbor is, what he or she will look like for each congregation, will be unique. We generated a lot of good conversation about where and how each congregation can meet its neighbors in need and how those neighbors can, in turn, help give purpose and direction to each church community.”

“One recurring theme we encountered was that of collaboration, how individual churches can collaborate with community organizations who are already doing the front-line work and who are always looking for partners, and also collaboration between congregations who may share the same outreach ministries,” deGravelles said. 

“I will spend the rest of this year following up with rectors who had a special interest in doing more to see if we can help put some of the pieces together. I will also be looking to help put congregations together who are working in the same area, or where one congregation might be willing to mentor another.”

In other business, Deacons decided to host another “Day on Deacons” later this year for those who are interested in knowing more about the vocational diaconate. During her visits to churches, Bishop Duckworth often gives her chaplain, Deacon Cindy Obier, an opportunity to talk about what a deacon is and does. “A lot of people in the pews still don’t quite understand the role and ministry of a deacon,” Obier said, “but when they do, they want one.”

Seated, left to right: Deacons Michael Hackett, Joyce Jackson, Kathy Comer, JoAnn Garma. Standing, left ot right: Deacons Cindy Obier, Louis Ogle, Jay Albert, Lester Mut, Charles deGravelles, Elaine Clements, Carol Spencer and Mark Hudson.

The PeliDeacon Newsletter

Read the latest news about the EDOLA Deacons

Congratulations to our Seminary Graduate & Ordination to the Diaconate, Lester Mut!!

The Rev. Deacon Less Mut - Marble Theological Seminary

"I graduated from seminary on May 17th and was ordained to the Diaconate on June 10th at St. Margaret’s Episcopal Church in Baton Rouge. This has been a wild journey with the love and support of my family, friends, and parishioners of St. Margaret’s. God has blessed me abundantly."

-The Rev. Deacon Less Mut

Newest Louisiana Deacon Ordained

  • by Archdeacon Charles deGravelles

Newly ordained Deacon Lester Mut serves at altar with Bishop Duckworth and Archdeacon deGravelles

In a service overflowing with both solemnity and celebration, bubbling with festive music and weighted with sober vows, Lester M. Mut was ordained deacon at St. Margaret’s Episcopal Church in Baton Rouge on June 10, 2024, by The Rt. Rev. Shannon Rogers Duckworth, Episcopal Bishop of Louisiana.

The church was packed with fellow congregants, friends and family as Mut made his diaconal vows “to make Christ and his redemptive love known, by your word and example, to those among whom you live, work and worship,” and “to interpret to the Church the needs, concerns and hopes of the world,” after which he received the Bishop’s ordinal blessing and laying on of hands.

Preaching the homily, The Rev. Trish Toburen, a colleague and fellow student of Mut’s in the Iona School for Ministry at the A. C. Marble School for Theological Formation, described his unflagging energy and creativity in the various aspects of his life, including his many diaconal ministries, deciding in the end, Toburen said, that the only conclusion she could draw was that “Les is more!”

In 2017, Mut organized the St. Margaret’s Laundry Love ministry in which he and others provided funds and detergent at a local washeteria for those who were in need. Les described the experience. “It was my joy to assist many of our neighbors with this basic necessity. One night a mother and her teenage daughter came in. They had lost their home after the mother became too ill to work. They had been living in their car for three weeks and had no clean clothes and no money. Through tears, hers and mine, we washed a carload of clothes. I listened to her story while the clothes washed. She shared with me that she felt that God must have led her to us.”

“Les Mut’s ordination was an especially joyous occasion for many of us, because it’s the first ordination of a vocational deacon since 2021,” according to Archdeacon Charles deGravelles, “and I believe Les is going to be a trailblazer, a forerunner for many more deacons in our diocese in the coming years. Under Bishop Duckworth’s leadership, the diaconate is a fully-valued, fully-utilized order of ordained ministry.”

Bishop ordains her newest deacon, Lester Mut,

as Canon MacIntire assists.

Les Mut, a native of Baton Rouge, was raised in a devout Roman Catholic family. He was very active in the church as a boy (he earned the Knight of Columbus Catholic Youth Leadership Award in 1972) and is grateful for the religious training and values he received there. Throughout a long odyssey of searching for the right church home for himself and his husband, Joe Boniol, he sought a place where he could fully exercise his many ministries (he has, for instance, been a choir member, cantor and choir director in many of the places he has worshipped) and also pursue what he perceived as a long-standing call to be an ordained deacon. The Episcopal Church, and St. Margaret’s Baton Rouge, turned out to be that home.

Father Tommy Dillon, rector of St. Margaret’s, thanked Bishop Duckworth for assigning Mut first to the parish that raised him up. Bishop Duckworth thanked Father Dillon and all of St, Margaret’s for the glorious service. “It was heavenly,” she said.

Diocesan clergy celebrate the ordination of Lester Mut to the Sacred Order of Deacons

Around the Diocese

Godly Play Core Training - 2 locations & dates

Godly Play is a creative, imaginative approach to Christian formation and spiritual guidance and models the worship life, stories, symbols and rituals of Christian congregations.

Godly Play Core Training is the recommended training for any adult leading or preparing to lead Godly Play sessions, as well as anyone who ministers to children, youth, and even adults such as lay leaders, family ministers, formation directors, church administrators, chaplains, clergy, vestry members, parents, grandparents, and caregivers.

Over the course of three days, participants experience all aspects of the Godly Play method and begin to become fluent in the Christian language system, Godly Play core stories, and fundamental Godly Play practices. Additionally, Godly Play's guiding Theology of Childhood is introduced, so participants become more deeply connected to their work. Learn more at www.godlyplayfoundation.org

Trinity Episcopal Church, NOLA

June 28-30


Friday (4:30 PM - 9:00 PM), with snacks and dinner

Saturday (8:30 PM - 6:00 PM) with light breakfast, snacks, and lunch

Sunday (11:30 - 6:00 PM) with coffee, snacks, and lunch

Godly Play Trainer & Host

Church Contact

Ashley Bond

(504) 236-2672


$349 per person, scholarships available to churches within the diocese

More Information & RegistrationNOLA

Christ Episcopal Church, Covington

July 19-21


Friday, July19, 2024 (4:30p-9:00p) with dinner

Saturday, July 20, 2024 (8:30a-5:30p) with coffee, snacks, and lunch

Sunday, July 21, 2024 (9:00a-5:00p) with coffee, snacks, and lunch

Church Contact

Olivia Moss children@christchurchcovington.com

$75-275 per person, $75 for church members, school faculty and families. 

More Information & Registration NORTHSHORE

Camp Able is Almost Here!

We are about to start another exciting year of Camp Able NOLA, a summer camp for young people with disabilities, but we can't do it without our community. We offer a fun-filled camp experience that our campers may not otherwise be able to have. It costs on average $200 for each camper, which includes food, t-shirts, transportation, activities, and more.

Please consider sponsoring a camper this year, or help provide meals for our staff, tickets to excursions, and much more by donating Camp Able NOLA. Donations can be made via Venmo (@CampAble-Inc and specify "Donation to NOLA" in the description), online through Christ Church Cathedral (select "Camp Able Donations" as the fund), or via check to Christ Church Cathedral (specify "Camp Able" in the memo line).

Thank you!

Kristen Reinberger

campable.org campablenola@gmail.com

Calling all Episcopalians! Join the Episcopal Pulse

The Episcopal Pulse Survey is a monthly micro-survey that dives into the pressing topics facing our church today – from church finances to young adult church attendance – and everything in between! The Pulse is a joint project between the Episcopal Church Foundation (ECF) and The FaithX Project designed to hear directly from Episcopalians to capture insights that will enrich resources for congregational leaders and enhance programs to better serve local Episcopal communities. Their latest survey dove into congregational health – have a look at our  results!

Click here to join the Episcopal Pulse to participate in future surveys:


Mission & Ministries of EDOLA

Latino/Hispanic Ministry Leaders Attended - Nuevo Amanecer Conference in North Carolina

Photo Credits: Karla duPlantier, The Rev. Tommy Dillon

St Margaret’s at Nuevo Amanecer

by Danielle Thomas

From June 3-6th, members of St. Margaret’s attended the Nuevo Amanecer “New Dawn” conference at Kanuga in North Carolina. Every two years, the Nuevo Amanecer gathering brings together Latino Episcopalians from across the country for ministry training, cultural celebration, and shared worship. Each day includes a full schedule of morning and evening prayers, plenary sessions, workshops, social activities, and community meals. Nuevo Amanecer is primarily in Spanish, but a team of interpreters provides translation as needed in English or Spanish. For example, during Eucharist on the first evening simultaneous interpretation into Spanish was provided with Presiding Bishop Michael Curry preached. In other sessions, native English speakers were provided with listening devices that allowed us to hear live English translation.

We felt it was important for St. Margaret’s to be represented at Nuevo Amanecer this year because of our growing La Mesa ministry. We are returning to St. Margaret’s with full hearts and minds. Nuevo Amanecer is truly an experience of God’s Kingdom on earth and a vision for the future of the Episcopal Church, one in which the leadership and laity come from numerous gender, racial, and ethnic backgrounds, and where cultural and language differences are viewed as assets, not barriers. While there are many strategies for Latino and Hispanic ministry, La Mesa is unique because of our emphasis on the exchange of culture and language as the foundation for lasting relationships. We are excited to continue to spend time at La Mesa (the table) with one another as we apply what we have learned this week and trust God on this ministry journey in our parish and beyond.

Bishop Appoints new Co-Chairs for the Gaudet Committee

Welcome The Rev.'s Jane-Allison Wiggin & A. Ryes who have been appointed the new co-chairs for the Gaudet Committee! Please read more information about The Gaudet Committee and Fund below.

The Gaudet Committee

Wednesday, June 19th, marked the third anniversary of Juneteenth: Freedom Day as a federal holiday. Recognizing the importance of this day, we are reminded of the ongoing need to actively dismantle racist systems and white supremacy both in the US and globally. As believers in Jesus, we understand that this work is crucial in our journey toward creating a more compassionate and inclusive Beloved Community.

A prayer for this day: O God, you made us in your own image and redeemed us through Jesus your Son: Look with compassion on the whole human family; take away the arrogance and hatred which infect our hearts; break down the walls that separate us; unite us in bonds of love; and work through our struggle and confusion to accomplish your purposes on earth; that, in your good time, all nations and races may serve you in harmony around your heavenly throne; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

– Prayer for the Human Family (Book of Common Prayer, p. 815)

For more information on Beloved Community, please visit:


Invitation to PRIDE by

Inclusive Louisiana Ministry

Saturday, June 29, 2024 – BR Pride Festival 

  • Noon to 7:00 PM: 2024 Baton Rouge Pride Festival at Raising Cane’s River Center
  • EDOLA Inclusive Louisiana Ministry table at the Resource Fair (Fair till 5:00 PM)

Pride Parade on the NorthShore & NOLA

Photo credits: Tamika Gerhardt, Ashley Bond, Scott Threlkeld

"To walk in Pride is one of the highlights of the year, and to see the turnout of clergy and laity from across the diocese is a strong and beautiful statement that God Loves You. The Episcopal Church Loves You." - Bishop Duckworth

Diocesan Pride Mass at St. Anna's, New Orleans

Photo credits: The Rev. Tommy Dillon

“It’s a tough time right now, politically and otherwise,” [Bishop Shannon Rogers Duckworth] said. “The way I look at it as bishop, it’s important for us as a diocese to continue the message of love and inclusion. We may not always agree with each other, but we can find commonality in the Eucharist. That’s why we as a diocese feel that having this Pride service at St. Anna's Episcopal Church is important, that it’s an event and a place where anyone can feel loved and accepted.” - Article excerpt from ENS, Shireen Korkzan

FULL ARTICLE HERE - Episcopal parish in New Orleans' Treme hosts third annual Pride Mass


Celebrating 60 Years ~ The Spirit of St. Luke's

Dear Brothers & Sisters in Christ,

I hope this letter finds you well and filled with the grace of our Lord. As we continue on our journey of faith and community, I am excited to share with you a special event that embodies both our dedication to our spiritual home and our commitment to its restoration.

On July 8, 1964, the St. Luke’s, Baton Rouge community celebrated and worshiped in the first service of our newly constructed church. As you know, our hearts were broken when the church and fellowship hall burned in the early morning hours of February 17, 2024. While we were originally planning to celebrate our 60th anniversary of St. Luke’s on Goodwood Blvd, we are now celebrating The Spirit of St. Luke’s at a Summer Soiree in July. This event will be a rebuilding fundraiser that promises to be both a delightful time of fellowship and a significant step forward in the rebuilding process. We are committed to rebuilding St. Luke’s so that it remains a beacon of faith for generations to come.

I want to personally invite you and your parish to join the St. Luke’s community for this event. We will have live music by “Downbeat Louisiana” along with delectable food and drinks. The live and silent auctions will feature incredible items donated by our generous church and school community as well as local businesses. Having the support of our greater Episcopal family will surely help make this a memorable night. I humbly ask you to share this event with your congregation and ask for your support in our rebuilding efforts.

Date: July 20, 2024

Time: 6:00pm - 10:00pm

Location: 8833 Goodwood Blvd. ~ The Foundation of St. Luke’s

The event will be located on the slab of the former church and Pope Hall under “chilled” tents.

Purchasing Tickets and Sponsorships: Event tickets can be purchased online at

bit.ly/StLukesSummerSoiree2024 . We also have sponsorship opportunities listed on the website. Sponsorships come with a variety of perks, including tables, parking, event tickets, and lots of advertising opportunities. Purchase your ticket before July 5 for a special ~early bird~ price.

Volunteer: If you would like to work an hour shift and save $25 off your ticket price, you can sign up at bit.ly/StLukesSummerSoireeVolunteer. After signing up, you’ll get an email with a discount code to use at checkout when purchasing tickets.

For any inquiries or to donate items for the auction, which would be greatly appreciated, please contact our event committee at stlukesbrrecovery@gmail.com.

Thank you for your continued dedication and support, and we hope to see you on July 20 at the Summer Soiree!

Yours in Christ,

Bryan Owen

6th Rector of St. Luke’s Episcopal Church, Baton Rouge

Addiction Recovery Ministry of EDOLA


"The journey to recovery is one of faith in our higher power as we learn to surrender in our struggle to let go of our previous defining behaviors. In the end, We embrace joy, the confidence that we live in the presence of unconditional love. The movements of our journey are faith, struggle, and joy."

EDOLA Co-Ed Recovery Retreat will take place August 2-4, 2024 at SECC. Come out if you are seeking education, guidance, support or just wishing to learn more about addiction recovery.


Deacon Albert Jay


Register Here

Women Gather at Solomon Center

What do women want? Connection? Community? Worship? Play? Learning? Exploration? Feeling more alive? All of the above?

To feel closer to God and others, to build community, to play, to learn—all require practice. If we

pursue these things only sporadically, it is hard to build the life we say we want. We are always God’s beloved, but to feel that way requires us to make time for spiritual growth. This series, just for women, will be offered at the Solomon Center on the second Thursday of each month from October to May and will provide many different opportunities and modalities to connect with other women seeking the same things. The Very Rev. Anne Maxwell will kick off the series on Thursday, October 10, and other facilitators will include The Rev. Liz Embler-Beasley, The Rev. Susan Gaumer, The Rev. Annie Knasz Jung, The Very Reverend Anne Maxwell, Debbie Poitevent, LCSW, Martha Tennison, LCSW, and The Rev. Andrea “Ani” Vidrine.

Registration will open soon www.seccla.org.

For more information, please call Lisa Tompkins Holden (504) 296-7234.

We are thrilled to invite you to share your news and inspirations for our EDOLA News monthly newsletter. Your contributions are truly valued and welcomed with open arms.

Our newsletter will typically go out on the 3rd Thursday of the month. We must receive information no later than one week prior (2nd Thursday of the month).

We encourage you to share an event or a story you’re excited about, especially those that involve more than one church, address the pain and poverty of the world, spread the Gospel, and/or educate or empower our churches.

For guidelines and submission links, you can visit our page, Submit News Events

Clergy Calls, Transitions & Lay Job Opportunities

Open Clergy Calls

Details, including links to parish profiles, can be found here.

  • Trinity Church, Baton Rouge, is seeking an associate priest for Christian formation.

Clergy Transitions

  • The Rev. Deacon Audra Ryes - Called as Rector of St. Patrick's, Zachary

Lay Job Opportunities

Lay employment opportunities can be found on the EDOLA website.

Walking in Love. Making Jesus Known. Transforming Lives.

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