Here you'll find stories and reflections about Bishop Skirving's visits to congregations around the diocese this Fall, in order of recency.
December 18, 2022: St. Peter's, Sunbury
Worship at St. Peter’s, Sunbury this morning included the baptism of two young sisters, a mix of Advent & Christmas themes, lunch, and a good meeting with members of the congregation about what may lie ahead in their life together with absolutely beautiful weather for the drive there and back! One of those days when it’s easy to see Immanuel - God with us!
December 11, 2022: Holy Trinity, Fayetteville
December 11, 2022: Holy Trinity, Fayetteville Visit
What a JOYful celebration of the Third Sunday of Advent with the Rev. Nancee Cekuta and the people of Holy Trinity Episcopal Church in Fayetteville! Lots of life and energy this morning, with children everywhere. This was my first Sunday morning visit since before COVID, and there were lots and lots of new faces!
The last picture in the group tells a couple of stories, one of which I'll include with the picture (captioned above in the gallery). The other is this...this little girl was an acolyte this morning, carrying the gospel book. She's grown up a lot since I baptized her...I guess I've been around for a while!
December 4, 2022: St. Paul's, Clinton
Thanks to St. Paul's Episcopal Church in Clinton for sharing this photo ...I didn't manage to get out my camera at the visit. It was good to be back to be with the people of this congregation to celebrate the Second Sunday of Advent and to confirm four and receive two of their members.
From Sunday's reading of the prophet Isaiah ..."A shoot shall come out from the stump of Jess, and a branch shall grow out of his roots." Lots of powerful imagery from the prophet!
Today I was reminded that it was almost exactly eight years ago that I visited Christ Church for the first time as bishop, on the day after my ordination. In the eight years since, sixty-five more bishops have been ordained in The Episcopal Church, with yesterday's ordination of the Bishop of Louisiana. Time has passed quickly ...
November 13, 2022: St. Peter's By-the-Sea, Swansboro
The Rev. Michelle Bullock is offering the dismissal at St. Peters By The Sea Episcopal Church in Swansboro this morning, where I visited. It was my first Sunday morning visit with these faithful folks since before Michelle came to be rector, in the months just before the onset of COVID. Our meal afterwards included a barbecue competition, with four different entries. The real winner? Those of us to got to try them all! Lots of great conversation with members of St. Peter's, including with a member who has an oyster farm...never know what I'm going to learn as I travel around this diocese! My point of emphasis from this morning's sermon? Some words of Jesus from the gospel: "do not be terrified" or, as he's also known to have said, "Do not be afraid."
November 6, 2022: Church of the Servant, Wilmington
November 6, 2022: Church of the Servant, Wilmington Visit
Excited to be able to join the people of the Church of the Servant, Wilmington, NC for their 50th anniversary celebration! It was a time of conversations with the adults during, confirmations/receptions at worship, and a great reception.
November 3, 2022: Lower Cape Fear Deanery & Becca Stevens at St. James Parish, Wilmington
Lower Cape Fear Deanery Residential Visit
So good to see Becca Stevens again, and to hear her speak about the work of Thistle Farms with all who gathered tonight at St. James Parish in Wilmington. Becca was accompanied by colleagues Kristin and Bella. It was wonderful to hear the enthusiasm with which people received her words, and I was left with the hope that perhaps a new partnership is taking place!
…And so I kick off my “residential visit” to the Lower Cape Fear Deanery. It’s good to be back!
November 1, 2022: Holy Trinity, Hertford
November 1, 2022: Holy Trinity, Hertford Visit
Giving thanks this evening for all of the saints of God! Sandy and I stopped in Hertford, NC on the way home from some visits in the northern part of The Episcopal Diocese of East Carolina and joined the people of Holy Trinity Church for a service of Evening Prayer for All Saints Day. And what a setting! The congregation gathered outside, between the church building and the parish hall, with their cemetery in the background. Before the service we wandered through the cemetery, founded in the 1840s, and I wondered about the lives of the saints of God who are buried there. If only their stones could speak …
And so my Albemarle Deanery “residential” begins, with pastoral visits tomorrow, and then time with area clergy at Christ Episcopal Church - Elizabeth City on Tuesday and Evening Prayer for All Saints Day at Holy Trinity, Hertford on the way home.
October 23, 2022: St. Thomas, Bath
October 23, 2022: St. Thomas, Bath Visit
Stepped into living history this morning, as I worshipped with the people of St. Thomas, Bath. Their church building is the oldest, continuously used church building in North Carolina, dating back to 1734. While they treasure their inheritance, and care for it faithfully, they are also engaged in reaching out into their community and loving their neighbors in concrete and practical ways: tomorrow morning food to those in need, and tomorrow evening they’ll be hosting a community fundraiser to benefit a young woman with cancer. Looking forward to being back with them on December 21st as they celebrate their patronal festival!
The morning started with a round of "Episcopal Jeopardy"hosted by Xena Markine-Morrison and continued with some reflections on baptism and ministry that I was asked to offer. Worship was next, with a sermon that contemplated Jesus' words that we "need to pray always and not lose heart," using as examples the gospel parable of the persistent widow and the letter of an older Paul to a younger Timothy. All of which was followed by a gracious reception in the parish hall.
Happy to be with the Rev. Frederick Clarkson and the people of this Spanish speaking congregation for Confirmation and Eucharist, followed by lunch with members of the Vestry and their families and with a number of seasonal farm workers …delicious chicken with mole sauce for me!
Thanks to everyone for their patience with my Spanish, and to Fred for interpreting my sermon into Spanish.
I’m looking forward to visiting again soon to celebrate with them the construction of their new church building, on the property they share with the Episcopal Farmworker Ministry!
October 2, 2022: St. Peter's Washington
October 2, 2022: St. Peter's, Washington Visit
"Guard the good treasure entrusted to you ..."
Today I worshipped with the people of Saint Peter's Episcopal Church in Washington NC, in celebration of their 200th Anniversary as a congregation. My sermon was built on the words from 2 Timothy 1:14 that are quoted above. Our worship was in English and Spanish and included confirmation and reception, with members of St. Paul's Episcopal Church Greenville, NC coming to be with us.
Great to be back with the people of St. George's in Engelhard today, to celebrate "Homecoming Sunday" with them. Since 1874, the people of this congregation have worshiped in this historic building. Some members of St. James in Belhaven were with us forworship, in support of Jack, who was received today. The church facilities and cemetery make clear that the members of St. George's care deeply for their historic property...everything looked great! And their hospitality was wonderful, with more delicious food than any of us could eat!
One of my joys as bishop is to visit the wide variety of congregations and communities that make up The Episcopal Diocese of East Carolina with the hope that I am able to encourage our people to continue as faithful followers of Jesus.
Thanks to Sandy for traveling with me today...she even got some photographs from our visit.
September 11, 2022: Grace Episcopal/Christ the King Lutheran
Happy to start back into the pattern of regular Sunday morning visits across the diocese with a trip to Whiteville for worship. The lay leadership of the congregation is strong and faithful, and well supported by a cast of visiting clergy, both Episcopal and Lutheran!
I’m sharing a photo of their new roadside food pantry. It was a joy to worship with these folks, to share a meal, and to learn more about how they are loving God by serving their neighbors!
Please submit your past-due reports ASAP! If you have questions, reach out to Litisha or LaTonya. 2023 Due Dates for Canonically-Required Reports and the 2023 Parish Contact Form and 2023 Audit Criteria Request Form are now available in our Resources. You can also find them here: