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The E-Pistle of Thursday

April 18th, 2024

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The Cathedral Hosts Opening Eucharist for the Episcopal Communicators Conference of 2024

On Tuesday evening, the cathedral hosted attendees of the Episcopal Communicators Conference of 2024 for their opening eucharist.

We are deeply honored to have welcomed this exceptional organization of communicators to the cathedral and the city of Portland.

The Episcopal Communicators describe their organization with the following statement:

"Episcopal Communicators is a self-supporting organization of communication professionals working in the Episcopal Church for dioceses, congregations and organizations. Our mission is to foster community that inspires and supports excellence in church communications."

To learn more about the work and ministry that they provide, visit their website here.

The cathedral community is grateful to the Episcopal Communicators, the Diocesan staff, and all volunteers who contributed to this opportunity to gather together in community. We celebrate and thank all of the communicators who attended the conference for their vital and dedicated work in the life of the church.

We congratulate the Episcopal Communicators on celebrating 50 years of dedicated efforts to foster communications in the wider church and look forward to supporting their future endeavors.

The Right Reverend Thomas J. Brown, Bishop of Maine,

processes during the Opening Eucharist of

the Episcopal Communicators 2024 Conference

Photo courtesy of Susan Sherrill Axelrod, Diocesan Director of Communications

Attendees of the 2024 Episcopal Communicators Conference listen to a panel of their peers discuss and celebrate 50 years of history, growth, and vision for the future for Episcopal Communicators.

Photo courtesy of Avery Levesque-Schott, Cathedral Communications Specialist

Pictured from left to right

The Rt. Rev. Thomas J. Brown, Bishop of Maine

The Reverend Suzanne Roberts, Associate Priest

The Reverend Rebecca Grant, Deacon

Photo courtesy of Amy Redfern, Diocesan Communications Specialist

Community Announcements

An Update Regarding Conflict Transformation

Written by Sam Allen, Senior Warden

On March 10 we held a “town hall”-type meeting with consultant Susan Czolgosz to receive the results of the Congregational survey that had been completed by 154 parishioners in December. Susan’s executive summary of the survey results can be found here. The summary included this finding:

We have learned that we are a congregation with particular gifts and assets. We are held back by events and circumstances that have eroded our morale and amplified anxiety and conflict among us. Developing a shared conflict transformation strategy is essential. 

At the Lesser Chapter (“Vestry”) meeting on March 20 we voted to engage Susan Czolgosz to help the Cathedral complete a three-phase process of Conflict Transformation during the period April–September 2024. Phase I is about to begin. It will consist of approximately 20 individual interviews that Susan will conduct with selected parishioners, clergy, and staff to enable Susan to dig a little deeper to understand our leadership and congregational system dynamics, and to build relational trust.

Interim Dean George Stevens and Wardens Sam Allen and Fred Fowler, in consultation with Susan, have selected a representative group of individuals to be interviewed and extended invitations for them to participate. Per Susan’s recommendation, we a keeping the names of Phase I participants confidential.

Susan will prepare a summary of her findings, written with care to ensure anonymity of those who contributed their thoughts, and the summary will be shared with the parish, as we did with the Executive Summary of the CAT survey.

Susan’s interviews will help her prepare the curriculum that she will use with us in Phases II and III of her work with us. We urge all parishioners to participate in Phases II and III. 

Phase II will consist of a 3.5-hour workshop led by Susan that will be designed to equip participants in: conflict mediation and caring communication skills; structured dialogue; interest-based conflict; understanding root causes of congregational conflict and how to avoid pitfalls in the future; and building rapport and trust. This workshop will be repeated a determined number of times to allow for fullest participation by members of the congregation. Timing of the workshops will be announced soon.

Phase III will consist of a two-hour facilitated opportunity to discuss, using a structured dialog process, events/actions which have created disappointments/hurts/conflict, inviting participants to speak the truth in a safe environment and to let go of past grievances and hurts; to clear away/reconcile the past. We anticipate Phase III to take place in September 2024.

I am excited that this process is underway, and I look forward to bringing our community together to participate in this essential work. Please join us and look for updates as we move forward!


Eco Tips from the

Public Policy and Environmental

Action Team (PPEAT)

Did you know that minute particles of plastic have been found in even the most pristine snow cover in the Antarctic and in the milk of breastfeeding mothers? Plastic has been shown to cause a number of cancers and to interfere with our reproductive systems and the development of our children.

In addition to reducing your household’s use of plastic, there are a number of steps you can take to advocate for plastic reduction on a larger scale.

  • Urge your members of Congress to pass the REDUCE Act Act (H.R. 5564/S. 2844), a bill that would put a fee on the sale of new, virgin plastic resin used to make single-use products. This could begin a wave of positive change, shifting industries to use recycled plastics or alternatives when creating single-use products as well as funding plastic waste reduction and recycling projects.

  • Sign the Anglican Communion UN team’s letter in support of a UN Global plastic treaty. The letter argues that plastic is particularly damaging for people living in poverty and explains why we should continue to reduce production and accelerate a just transition away from single-use and harmful plastics.

The Healing Team Schedule

The Healing Team will serve on the following Sundays in April and May. Prayers of healing may be requested in the small chapel to the right of the communion rail after or during communion. Healing Team members offering prayers of healing are:

April 21, 2024  Elise Magnuson, Judd Hume

April 28, 2024  Sara Schmalz, Peter Carleton

May 5, 2024.   Sara Schmalz, Oscar Mokeme

Youtube Livestream

Over the last several weeks, the livestream software at the cathedral has experienced difficulties connecting to our Youtube Live account.

We value the ability to livestream our services, so that worship can be accessible for all.

We apologize for any difficulties which members of our community may have experienced whilst attempting to stream Sunday morning services.

We are actively working to troubleshoot this error and appreciate your patience.

Each Sunday we stream both to Youtube and Facebook Live.

If you experience difficulties with our Youtube livestream, our streaming team encourages you to visit our Facbeook page to view the service.

Thank you for your understanding as we work to resolve this error.

Park Street Door Code

In order to maintain security efforts at the cathedral, the code on the park street entrance has been changed. If you have questions please contact acting junior warden Fred Fowler, The Reverend George Stevensor call the parish office (207)-772-5434 if you are in need of the access code. Thank you for your understanding as we make efforts to keep our building safe and secure for all.

Looking For Individuals to serve as Treasurer and

Junior Warden

The cathedral is looking for individuals interested in serving in the positions of treasurer and junior warden.

If you are interested in serving as treasurer please contact The Rev. George Stevens or Tim Wilkins, with any questions.

If you have interest in either of these positions please email The Rev. George Stevens or Senior Warden Sam Allen.

Christian Education at the Cathedral

Interested in Christian Education? In the coming weeks the vestry will be beginning work on creating a fresh job description for the Interim Director of Religious Education at the Cathedral of St. Luke. 

If you’re interested in helping shape this new position, please contact Interim Dean the Rev. George Stevens.

Last Week's Services

To view last week's bulletin click here

To watch the livestream of last week's service click here.

To listen to the sermon offered this past Sunday by the Reverend Suzanne Roberts M.D., Associate Priest, click here.

To View past services visit our Youtube Page or visit the archive page on our website to read past bulletins, sermons, and newsletters.

Events and Resources in the Wider Community

Portland Rossini Club Concert on April 28th

Join the Portland Rossini Club for their concert on April 28th at 3:00PM.

The concert will feature students of Laura Kargul, Director of Keyboard Studies at the University of Southern Maine's Osher School of Music.

To learn more about this event and the Rossini Club, visit their website here.

Harmony Unveiled:

Nurturing Nicaragua's Future Together

Date of Event: Tuesday, May 7

Location: St. Nicholas Church, 350 Rt. 1, Scarborough, ME 04074

Time: 7:00PM

We hear and read about Central America and think we know something about the people, and about immigration, in specific, and yet oftentimes what we’ve been told turns out to be questionable. Come hear firsthand experience from someone who has been living and working in Nicaragua for over 35 years. Sarah Woodard has extensive experience working among those less advantaged in support of economic development, food security, and access to affordable healthcare.

Renaissance Voices Concert on Friday, May 10th

Join Renaissance Voices under the direction of maestro Harold Stover

(St. Luke's parishioner) for their next concert on Friday, May 10th at 7:30PM in the Cathedral Nave.

Musical selections include works by John Dowland, Thomas Morely, Edward Elgar, Selections from the Great American Songbook and more.

To learn more about Renaissance Voices and to purchase tickets for this upcoming concert, visit their website here.

Screening of the "Philadelphia 11"

Documentary to be Held in Portland

The full-length documentary, "The Philadelphia 11," which tells the remarkable story of the first women ordained in the Episcopal Church, is coming to the Nickelodeon Theater in Portland's Old Port on Tuesday, 14 May at 7 p.m.

The screening will be followed by a panel that includes with one of these 11 pioneers: Merrill Bittner. Merrill will be joined by Portia Hirschman (retired priest from Maryland who is active at St. Mary's in Falmouth), Nancy Moore (sponsored for ordination in Maine and rector at Christ Church in Norway), Vicki Smith (sponsored for ordination in Maine and has served in several other dioceses, currently rector at St. Martin's in Palmyra), and Sukie Curtis (retired and active at St. Bartholomew's in Yarmouth). 

I hope you can be with us on Tuesday, May 14th for this exciting event.

To learn more about the film visit the webpage here.

Apply to be an Episcopal Church Ecojustice Fellow

The Episcopal Church Department of Reconciliation, Justice, and Creation Care invites applicants for the 2024 Ecojustice Fellows program, open to young adult Episcopalians between 21 and 30 years old. In this five-month virtual/remote program, fellows will participate six to eight hours per week between June and mid-October and receive a stipend of $2,750. Fellows will receive training in creation care theology and advocacy and will develop a local ecojustice project in their congregation, institution, or diocese. Applications will be accepted until May 15. Visit Here to Apply online.

GreenFaith Launches Rising Leaders Fellowship

GreenFaith has a strong history of hosting eco-spiritual learning Fellowship experiences. This year, they are excited to be launching the Rising Leaders Fellowship for young adults aged 18-35, with a passion for climate justice and faith-based activism. The Rising Leaders Fellowship is a transformative yearlong program designed to equip and empower young adults to make a tangible difference in their community and beyond. Applications are due May 12. 

Read more about the details, expectations and responsibilities here.

Looking For Land to Support Solar Farm

The Reverend Ted Gaiser of St. Nicholas, Scarborough is working with Revision Energy and a Michigan based non profit called Solar Faithful on developing a solar farm that faith communities can buy into. This will enable them to access energy from a renewable source and save them significant money in the process. They are exploring a few properties but are still looking for other options. Here are the requirements:

  1. About 5 acres
  2. Relatively flat land close to the road.
  3. Unshaded and not in a designated wetland area.
  4. Land close to 3 phase power lines (as opposed to single phase)
  5. Land that is mortgage free.

The benefit to the lessee is that the leased property will realize between $1,500 - $2,000 per acre of rent per year which is between $7,500 to $10,000 of rent per year (25 year lease).

If you or someone you know has land meeting these requirements and are interested in selling or leasing it, please contact Sarah Braik.

Ongoing Opportunities &

Community Resources

Coffee Hour

Coffee Hour - Please join us after the service for a time of fellowship in the upper hall through the doors to the left of the altar. All are welcome.

Interested in hosting? It is an important part of our parish life and provides us with a time for connection. Hosting is fun and easy, it requires bringing in a baked good and brewing coffee the Sunday of your choosing. Please consider signing up, a lot of gratitude comes with the job. Thank you!

Check the hosting schedule by visiting the link here.  

Please email Meredith Cough with your date.

Access Your Realm Profile

The Cathedral’s new online database, Realm, is a useful tool for parishioners to manage their contact and pledging information.

Realm helps our community by improving our record keeping in a more streamlined fashion. 

When joining Realm you can sign-up to be a part of the online directory in the database.

To activate your Realm profile please contact our financial administrator Nina Andersen.

Nina will assist you with the few steps necessary to access your profile.

We look forward to sharing this exciting new technology with you!

Join the Young and The Restless

We are St. Luke’s 20s-30s-year-old ministry. We are an active group at the cathedral which also gets together outside of the church.

Join us as we go hiking, ice skating, play trivia, or just enjoy each other’s company! If you are new to us, welcome! We meet each Tuesday at Maine Beer Company in Freeport, 6-8 PM for Trivia.

Other events happen sporadically throughout the month, however trivia is a wonderful opportunity to meet us if you’re joining us for the first time. Contact Shana Rose to stay up to date with group activities and information.

Join Luke's Garden


Luke's Garden is the cathedral's LGBTQIA+ group which meets every 2nd Sunday of the month following coffee hour.

All are welcome!

For additional information contact Orion Williams

The Kneeler Guild and

Prayer Shawl Knitters



The Upper Hall.

For additional information contact Jeri Edgar 207-303-8447 or Nancy MaWhinney 207-775-7500

Everyone is welcome, whether you are curious or want to begin. Kneeler kits cost $75, which include directions, yarn, needles & canvas. Novices are welcome; we will teach you as needed. Prayer Shawls: 26-29” by 60”; select your yarn & needles. Coffee & Tea available.

Weekly Ministries

  • The Food Pantry is open from 8 am to 11 am every Thursday.

  • The Tuesday 12:10 Eucharist is offered every week in Emmanuel Chapel in-person and on Zoom.

  • Noon prayer is offered every Wednesday via Zoom.

  • Compline is offered weekly on Friday from 8-8:30pm on Zoom.

Click on the Episcopal Maine Logo above to learn about all that is happening in the wider Diocese.





Physical Address:

143 State Street, Portland, ME 04101

Parking Available at:

134 Park Street, Portland, ME 04101

Mailing Address:

P.O. Box 4141, Portland, ME 04101

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