November 5th, 10-2 pm at St. John’s, Saginaw

Worship is a powerful place – a place that transforms and empowers. What we do when we gather is so much more than reciting words set down in an approved collection of liturgies. This is the place where we may find ourselves awakened by God and stretched to reach new depths of faith, new ways of connecting what is going on in the world with how we might faithfully respond. This is the place where we encounter God as we meet our own lives. This is the place where we are challenged to do more than simply sit through a “surface meeting with God”. It is in worship that “we should be lashed to the pews because God just might awake and draw us out to new depths.”

(“Worship as Theology: Foretaste of Glory Divine” by Don Saliers, page 22).

Have you felt the tiny nudging of God to be a part of putting together and officiating at Morning Prayer liturgies which are powerful and transformative?

Have you heard that tiny whispering to learn more about leading worship?

Have you been invited by your church to become a Licensed Lay Worship Leader?

Lay worship leaders are essential to the spiritual life of a congregation. Whether you’ve been licensed before or you’re just jumping in, Worship Leader Training prepares participants for the ministry of leading congregational worship and is required for licensure as a worship leader in Eastern and Western Michigan.

Worship Leader Training I offers a basic introduction to leading worship in your congregation. In order to be eligible for licensure, participants must complete a course exam.

Bring a copy of the Book of Common Prayer that you can write into the session. Before arriving for the course, please flip through the entire book to get a sense of the depth and breadth of what the Book of Common Prayer contains.

Click here to read a recent communication from the bishop concerning the future of lay licensing in Eastern and Western Michigan.

Questions about this event? Please contact our training facilitator, the Rev. Curt Norman, at curt@stjohns-saginaw.org.


St. John’s Episcopal Church
123 N. Michigan Ave
Saginaw, MI 48602



The cost to participate in Worship Leader Training is $25. Please register for November 5th’s Worship Leader Training I by October 31st.

The registration form is also open for other upcoming trainings, Worship Leader Training II in January and an online Worship Leader Training I in June. Specific invitations for those opportunities will be sent as those dates approach.

Our Season of Practice

An Introduction from Bishop Singh

Greetings Beloved,

I am Prince Signh, and I have the honor of serving as your Bishop Provisional in Eastern and Western Michigan. It’s been eight months since I started on this adventure with you, and you have been at this for a while. I will tell you that I am so grateful to God for this privilege of walking with you.

I live in a village called Stanwood, which is around the Canadian Lakes area. It is somewhere there (*points to hand), kind of in the middle of the state. I chose to live there after consulting with some of the leaders because it seemed like it was kind of in the middle.

I am having a blast visiting many of you in both the dioceses and getting a sense of who you are. I thought I would take a minute to just reflect a little bit about what I see.

What I see is people of faith with a deep and abiding love for God, and a facility with which you speak about your faith that continues to strike me as significant. That part of my journey with you has been and continues to awaken in me a deep curiosity about a community of faithful people, regardless of guises, who have a dynamic walk with God, and who are constantly exploring ways to live into it; whether it is taking on a challenge in terms of a vision, or dealing with the crises that are around people. I think that’s a significant part of who you are. I see that as almost a consistent refrain throughout my encounters with people.

The other thing that I noticed is that you are very innovative. I see expressions of innovations in local congregations whether it is responding to human need or to the spiritual needs of formation in the community, whether it is starting community gardens that are collaborative, sometimes ecumenical– certainly reaching out to the community.

There is something in the water in Eastern and Western Michigan that causes you to think outside of the box in a very challenging kind of way, and without really waiting for all of the ducks to be in a row, to jump in. I just find that to be inspiring. I am thinking about the Order of Naucratius, I am thinking about Plainsong Farm, and I am thinking about the Academy, and the Coppage Gordon School, and that drive to see how we can form one another in very innovative ways. And then we have some new ones like the Diaper Bank at St. Stephen’s, Plainwell and initiators that are about figuring out ways to answer the question, “How can we be the body of Christ?” whether there is a congregation there or not.

I see innovation, I see deep rooted faithfulness, and I feel it is time for us in our journey to heal in meaningful ways.

The way I look at healing is that we acknowledge our woundedness and we start moving collectively towards a north star. Jesus calls us for that kind of journey, that while we are moving towards something, we find our own healing and our own transformation, and find meaningful ways to live out our faith so that others may also find ways to heal while they are also journeying towards the future.

Holding hope in front of us is very important. With that in mind, I’ve been in conversation with several of the leaders and leadership groups and we have collectively come to a conclusion that we are going to move into a “Season of Practice.”

It is not new. We are not starting from scratch. You have been doing it already but we can be a little more intentional. Here is what we are planning to do: we are planning to ask all the standing committees of the dioceses (ie. the Standing Committees, Diocesan Councils of both the dioceses, Commissions on Ministry from both the dioceses) and we are going to figure out how we may lean into each other over the course of this next year.

We are going to be in prayer. We are going to think about ways in which we take collectively  a sense of where we are, what we have learned, and how we may move towards the future leaning into each other in the season of practice.

The purpose behind this is a very Anglican way, in my opinion. It is the way of saying “How can we practice, before we structure ourselves?” It’s like the analogy of when someone wants to build a sidewalk. The best way to build a sidewalk is to watch where people are walking. It is the practice of the people that gives us a sense of where to put the stuff, or what that structure should look like.

I feel confident that because of the innovative spirit, because of the deep faithfulness in God, that we as two dioceses can live into the season of practice with humility, with curiosity, and with a desire to see how best our efforts can clarify our path going forward. In the process, this beautiful group of people that you’ve invited to be the Building Bridges Committee, is going to take on the responsibility of walking with us as a diocese and as dioceses so that we may also get to clarify a common vision. Getting clarity about vision is so important, as you know, Proverbs clearly says “without a vision people perish,” and by the grace of God we are not perishing!

I want to say carefully and clearly that we are not in a survival mode. I think both of these dioceses, Eastern and Western, are pretty stable, pretty solid, both in terms of the people capacities, as well as financial and other capacities. There is no panic. There is no sense of survival that is driving us to this.

I think what is driving us is a deep desire to see how we can do the work of ministry in the best possible way, to optimize our capacities. If we are able to do this collectively, in this part of Michigan with the resources that we have of the two dioceses, then that would glorify God. It is a very simple way to say “How can we practice this and see if we can learn from this experience?”, then we can put together a sense of how this might look. Are we going to continue in this path and move even deeper? Or should we learn from our experience, and then say there are ways in which we should go back or make some adjustments, etc.

All of that is in the back of the Holy Spirit, because the Holy Spirit is here to strengthen us. I believe we can lean in with confidence and with boldness and humility, so that we may actually become an even better body of Christ, a more relevant body of Christ, a more visionary body of Christ, that is looking not only at what we have right now, but looking ahead into generations that are yet to come, so that what we leave behind as a legacy will be worthwhile for future generations to live and thrive as people in this beautiful state and as a church – The Episcopal Church, or the Episcopal Branch of the Jesus Movement.

As our Presiding Bishop beautifully says, “So come, come with open hearts, come with willingness to learn, because we are going to learn from one another, and then let’s see how the future emerges, but let’s come with curiosity”.

I am confident that we will find clarity as we walk together. Let us walk together!

Saludos mi estimado,

Soy el Príncipe Signh y tengo el honor de servir como su Obispo Provisional en el este y el oeste de Michigan. Han transcurrido ocho meses desde que empecé esta aventura con usted, y seguramente ya lleva un tiempo en ello. Le diré que estoy muy agradecido a Dios por este privilegio de caminar con usted.

Vivo en un pueblo llamado Stanwood, que está alrededor de la zona de los lagos canadienses. Está en algún lugar ahí (*apunta con la mano), en el centro del estado. Elegí vivir allí después de consultar con algunos de los líderes porque parecía que estaba en el centro.

Me lo estoy pasando genial visitando a muchos de ustedes en ambas diócesis y teniendo una idea de quién son. Pensé en tomarme un minuto para reflexionar un poco sobre lo que veo.

Lo que observo son personas de fe con un amor profundo y permanente por Dios, y una facilidad con la que habla de su fe que me sigue resultando significativo. Esa parte de mi viaje con ustedes ha despertado y sigue despertando en mí una profunda curiosidad por una comunidad de personas fieles, independientemente de quiénes sean, que tienen un caminar dinámico con Dios y que están constantemente explorando maneras de vivir en él, ya sea asumiendo un desafío en términos de visión o lidiando con las crisis que rodean a las personas. Creo que es una parte importante de lo que usted es. Lo veo casi como un estribillo constante a lo largo de mis encuentros con la gente.

La otra cosa que noté es que usted es muy innovador. Veo expresiones de innovaciones en las congregaciones locales, ya sea que respondan a las necesidades humanas o a las necesidades espirituales de formación en la comunidad, ya sea que se trate de crear huertos comunitarios que sean colaborativos, a veces ecuménicos, sin duda, que lleguen a la comunidad.

Hay algo en el agua en el este y el oeste de Michigan que hace que uno piense de forma innovadora de una manera muy desafiante, y sin tener que esperar a que todos los patos estén en fila, para saltar. Eso me parece muy inspirador. Estoy pensando en la Orden de Naucratius, en la Granja Canción Plainsong y en la Academia y en la Escuela Coppage Gordon, y en ese deseo de ver cómo podemos formarnos unos a otros de formas muy innovadoras. Y luego tenemos otros nuevos, como el Banco de pañales en St. Stephen’s, Plainwell, y algunos iniciadores que buscan encontrar formas de responder a la pregunta: ¿Cómo podemos ser el cuerpo de Cristo? si hay una congregación allí o no.

Veo la innovación, veo una fidelidad profundamente arraigada y siento que es momento de que en nuestro viaje nos sanemos de forma significativa.

La forma en que veo la curación es que reconocemos nuestras heridas y empezamos a avanzar colectivamente hacia una estrella polar. Jesús nos llama a ese tipo de viaje, para que, mientras avanzamos hacia algo, encontremos nuestra propia curación y transformación, y encontremos formas significativas de vivir nuestra fe para que otros también puedan encontrar formas de sanar mientras viajan hacia el futuro.

Mantener la esperanza frente a nosotros es muy importante. Con eso en mente, he mantenido conversaciones con varios de los líderes y grupos de liderazgo y, colectivamente, hemos llegado a la conclusión de que pasaremos a una temporada de práctica.

No es nueva. No empezaremos de cero. Ya lo ha estado haciendo, pero podemos ser un poco más intencionales. Esto es lo que planeamos hacer: estamos planeando preguntar a todos los comités permanentes de las diócesis (es decir, los Comités Permanentes, los Consejos Diocesanos de ambas diócesis, las Comisiones de Ministerio de ambas diócesis) y averiguaremos cómo podemos apoyarnos unos en otros en el transcurso del próximo año.

Estaremos rezando. Pensaremos en las formas en que tomamos colectivamente una idea de dónde estamos, lo que hemos aprendido y cómo podemos avanzar hacia el futuro apoyándonos unos en otros en la temporada de práctica.

En mi opinión el propósito detrás de esto es muy anglicano. Es la forma de decir, ¿Cómo podemos practicar antes de estructurarnos? Es como la analogía de cuando alguien desea construir una acera. La mejor forma de construir una acera es observar por dónde camina la gente. Es la práctica de las personas la que nos da una idea de dónde colocar las cosas o cómo debería ser esa estructura.

Confío en que, gracias al espíritu innovador, a la profunda fidelidad en Dios, como dos diócesis, podemos vivir la temporada de práctica con humildad, curiosidad y con el deseo de ver cómo nuestros esfuerzos pueden aclarar mejor nuestro camino en el futuro. En el proceso, este hermoso grupo de personas que usted ha invitado a formar parte del Comité Construyendo Puentes asumirá la responsabilidad de caminar con nosotros como diócesis y como diócesis para que también podamos aclarar una visión común. Obtener claridad sobre la visión es muy importante, como ya sabrá, los Proverbios dicen claramente que “sin una visión las personas perecen” , ¡y por la gracia de Dios no perecemos!

Quiero decir con cuidado y claridad que no estamos en modo de supervivencia. Creo que ambas diócesis, oriental y occidental, son bastante estables, bastante sólidas, tanto en términos de las capacidades de las personas como de las capacidades financieras y de otro tipo. No hay pánico. No hay ninguna sensación de supervivencia que nos lleve a esto.

Creo que lo que nos impulsa es un profundo deseo de ver cómo podemos hacer el trabajo del ministerio de la mejor forma posible, para optimizar nuestras capacidades. Si podemos hacer esto colectivamente, en esta parte de Michigan con los recursos que tenemos de las dos diócesis, entonces eso glorificaría a Dios. Es una manera muy sencilla de decir “¿Cómo podemos practicar esto y ver si podemos aprender de esta experiencia?”, entonces podemos hacernos una idea de cómo podría verse esto. ¿Continuaremos por este camino y avanzar aún más? O debemos aprender de nuestra experiencia y luego decir que existen maneras en las que debemos volver atrás o hacer algunos ajustes, etc.

Todo eso está en la espalda del Espíritu Santo, porque el Espíritu Santo está aquí para fortalecernos. Creo que podemos apoyarnos con confianza, audacia y humildad, para que podamos convertirnos en un cuerpo de Cristo aún mejor, un cuerpo de Cristo más relevante, un cuerpo de Cristo más visionario, que observe no solo lo que tenemos ahora, sino que mire hacia las generaciones que están por venir, así que lo que dejemos como legado valdrá la pena para que las generaciones futuras vivan y prosperen como personas en este hermoso estado y como iglesia: la Iglesia Episcopal o la Rama Episcopal del Movimiento de Jesús.

Como dice maravillosamente nuestro Obispo Presidente: “Así que vengan, vengan con el corazón abierto, vengan con ganas de aprender, porque aprenderemos los unos de los otros, y luego veamos cómo surge el futuro, pero vengamos con curiosidad”.

Estoy seguro de que encontraremos claridad mientras caminamos juntos. ¡Caminemos juntos!


October 14-15 at St. John’s, Grand Haven

The Dismantling Racism Task Force will sponsor an opportunity for members of the Episcopal Dioceses of Eastern and Western Michigan to participate in a two-day intensive offered by CORE (Congregations Organizing for Racial Equity).

The training, titled “Understanding Racism” covers the many facets of racism, from its origins to its outward manifestations. It explores scripture, definitions of racism, and common language, and encourages participants to look inward at their biases, as well as outward at the institutions and locations in which they live, work, and worship. This particular offering will be contextualized for an Episcopal audience.

For Western Michigan participants – this training satisfies the requirements under Level 1 and Level 2 of the diocesan dismantling racism policy.

Please read below for details about cost and registration, including an option for overnight accommodations.

We are anticipating an additional training opportunity to be held in a northern location sometime next Spring.

Photo: Eastern and Western Michigan participants during last Spring’s CORE Training in Grand Rapids.


October 14-15, 2022

St. John’s Episcopal Church
524 Washington Ave
Grand Haven, MI 49417

The program takes place from 7-9pm on Friday, the 14th and from 9-4pm on Saturday, the 15th.


The cost to participate has been subsidized to $20/person for the two-day training, which includes lunch provided on Saturday.

(This event is made possible by the Dismantling Racism Task Force. The typical cost to attend a CORE training is $200 per person.)

The training is open to all in the Dioceses of Eastern and Western Michigan. Space is limited to 40 participants. We will maintain a waiting list to fill extra spots, should they open.

We have a small block of rooms available at the Best Western Beacon Inn, for participants at a reduced rate of $180/night. To reserve, please call 616-842-4720 and give them the group name, “EDWM-Core.” The deadline to reserve rooms under this block is September 14th.

The deadline to submit your registration for the training is October 10th.


September 24th at Holy Spirit, Belmont

All DOK members of Eastern and Western Michigan are invited to join us for the first gathering of the Daughters of the King

in two years! It is a time to gather, pray and give thanks for God’s goodness as we explore our 2022 theme, Partners in Ministry.

Plan to attend to help establish new goals, form relationships across dioceses, and to spend time with our new Bishop Provisional, The Rt.Rev. Prince Singh.

Bishop Singh will offer the main address for the Assembly.

Questions about the event?
Please contact Western Michigan DOK President, Jeanine Totzke, at jtotzke@berriencounty.org or at 269-921-1127.

Questions about your registration?
Please contact Lois Weed at lweed11@comcast.net or 269-535-0050.


The cost to attend is $10, which includes lunch. Please register before September 21st.

We have sent this invitation to all DOK members in Eastern and Western Michigan for whom we have email addresses listed. Please pass this invitation along to your fellow members to ensure all who ought to receive this, does. This message was also sent to parish leadership, including clergy, senior wardens, and listed parish admins.



September 24th, 10-3pm at St. John’s, Midland

During her preparation for her D.Min. in Preaching, the Rev. Canon Dr. Tracie Little, Canon to the Ordinary serving Eastern Michigan, developed the Barrier-Pivot-Passage model for preaching for spiritual formation within a congregation that had identified a restlessness and readiness to deepen their spirituality. The preaching project that unfolded at St. Jude’s, Fenton during that time revealed that this model can help listeners connect the pattern of Barrier-Pivot-Passage in scripture to their own spiritual lives, having an impact on their participation with God’s ongoing work in the world.

This workshop will help participants craft sermons that move congregations focused on cognitive learning from a head experience into an engagement with the heart, leading to a growing awareness of their own response to God.

This event, which will take place on Saturday, September 24th from 10-3pm, is offered for all clergy and licensed lay preachers serving in Eastern and Western Michigan.

Please contact the Rev. Canon Dr. Tracie Little with any questions – tlittle@eastmich.org.


St. John’s Episcopal Church
405 N. Saginaw Road
Midland, MI



This event is open to all clergy and licensed lay preachers in Eastern and Western Michigan. The cost to participate has been subsidized to $10 per person, which includes lunch.

Please register by September 10th.


Statement on Lambeth from Bishop Singh

Dear Friends,

Earlier this week, while reviewing preliminary documents and procedures for the upcoming Lambeth Conference of the Anglican Communion, colleagues discovered the inclusion of a decades-old statement; one discriminatory to our beloved LGBTQ+ siblings. Attending bishops are asked to either affirm the statement or indicate that they “need more time for discernment.” There is no option for “no,” which would be the earth-shaking response from the vast majority of bishops from The Episcopal Church and others. You may remember that I had already chosen not to attend due to earlier discriminatory actions against our LGBTQ+ bishops and spouses.

While we wait for a broader statement from our Presiding Bishop’s office, let me make a brief observation from my perch as Bishop Provisional of Eastern and Western Michigan.

Canterbury has stated to address “the call” as it prepares to meet for its historic Lambeth conference. It identifies a “gap between rhetoric and reality” and names, particularly, “historical exploitation, deepening poverty, and prejudice” that “continues to threaten human dignity.” I find it ironic that Canterbury then scapegoats one of the critical vulnerabilities within the Anglican Communion, the prejudice against LGBTQ+ Anglicans, as the area that needs “deeper work.” The gaps between rhetoric and reality could not be more exacerbated than Canterbury’s handling of this “divide” between rhetoric and LGBTQ+ reality.

The Chicago-Lambeth Quadrilateral asks us to value local expressions of Episcopal Authority, such as those in North America and elsewhere in the Anglican Communion. These dioceses give us ample examples of how to bridge the gap between rhetoric and practice as far as LGBTQ+ saints are concerned. To treat this giftedness as anything other than the Anglican Communion’s opportunity to learn from parts of the communion and enhance everyday life is to play divide and rule politics. This divisive Lambeth Conference move preserves a passive peace and the victims of prejudice will bear the burden of a body that refuses to do its deepening soul work. Canterbury’s act of disinviting spouses of LGBTQ+ Bishops reinforces this gap between rhetoric and the practice of holiness as embodied in the marriage of LGBTQ+ saints!

To place the life and witness of our LGBTQ+ saints in contrast to marriage between a man and a woman is a colonial ploy by an empire that is perhaps holding on to the last vestiges of its arbiter role. It also could be another attempt of Canterbury’s at clinging to relevance using an instrument of unity–Lambeth–to embrace legislative action while also appearing not to do so.

Let me be clear to all who need to hear as a bishop witnessing the redemptive power of the gospel of Jesus Christ in this branch of the Anglican Communion. The Episcopal Dioceses of Eastern and Western Michigan have addressed the so-called gap in practicing radical hospitality by valuing the dignity of LGBTQ+ saints! In so doing, we have embraced the doctrine, discipline, and worship of Christ as this church has received them. We have willingly helped anyone who wants to do more profound work in this area of our faith in action. In response to Christ’s call to love one another as he has loved us, we welcome all and value their dignity without reservation!

Yours in Christ,

The Rt. Rev. Prince Singh
Bishop Provisional
The Episcopal Dioceses of Eastern and Western Michigan


Endorsed by the Standing Committees of Eastern and Western Michigan:

Barb Ilkka

St. John’s, Saginaw

The Rev. Brian Chace
Retired, Northern Region

The Rev. Don Davidson
St. Paul’s, Flint

Jelecia Geraghty
St. Paul’s, Flint

Gary Grinn
St. Paul’s, Gladwin

The Rev. Anna Leigh Kubbe

Holy Family, Blue Water

The Rev. Dr. Randall Warren

St. Luke’s, Kalamazoo

Martha Bartlett
St. James, Pentwater

The Rev. Diane Pike
Retired, Southern Region

Carole Redwine
St. Philip’s, Grand Rapids

The Rev. Anne Schnaare
Grace, Grand Rapids

Fred Skidmore
St. Andrew’s, Grand Rapids

The Rev. Eileen Stoffan

St. Paul’s, Muskegon


Courses prepare participants for licensure

Dear Friends in Christ,

Eastern and Western Michigan will be offering training for lay preachers seeking to get licensed in our dioceses. The courses take place alongside our Academy for Vocational Leadership. If you feel called to serve as a lay preacher, please speak with your priest (or senior warden if your congregation is without a priest) and, with their approval, complete the application by the August 15th deadline.

To complete the classwork in order to receive a license, the lay preacher is required to take one year of Bible instruction and one year of Homiletics formation. These may be completed by participating in both classes in one academic year or by taking Bible this year and Homiletics next year.

This formation expectation is a change for new preaching licenses in Western Michigan. Those previously licensed in Western Michigan will be expected to have completed some form of continuing education (on Scripture or homiletics) before their license will be renewed in December. You are encouraged to consider participating in the Academy programs as a means of completing this requirement and further equipping oneself for this ministry.

The 2022-23 school year will be a mixture of in-person at the St. Francis Retreat Center in DeWitt and online via Zoom. The cost to participate in both classes is $1,000 (or Bible only for $720). During the weekend, participants interact with Academy students at meals, worship, and break times. Each Saturday follows the same pattern, with the Bible course taught from 9:30-3:30pm and Homiletics taught from 7-9pm. Please read below for dates.

If you have any questions, please contact me at tlittle@eastmich.org or by phone at 810-300-9177.


The Rev. Canon Dr. Tracie Little
Coordinator, The Academy for Vocational Leadership
Canon to the Ordinary, The Episcopal Diocese of Eastern Michigan


The Academy for Vocational Leadership is a bi-diocesan program of formation, including courses for laity (like the preaching series), and a three-year program of preparation for the diaconate or priesthood. Courses are taught by seminary faculty from the Iona Collaborative, a program of the Seminary of the Southwest in Austin, TX, with discussions and coursework directed by local faculty.

Learn more about the Academy on our websites – Eastern Michigan and Western Michigan.

Photo: A previous graduating class of the Academy – Kelly Scheu (Diocese of Michigan), the Rev. Nancy Mayhew (St. Alban’s, Bay City), the Rev. Tom Manney (St. Paul’s, Bad Axe and St. John’s, Dryden), and the Rev. Wendy Brown (St. John’s, Charlotte).

THE 2022-23 DATES

September 10, 2022 at The St. Francis Retreat Center in Dewitt
October 15, 2022 at The St. Francis Retreat Center in Dewitt
November 12 via Zoom
December 10, 2022 at The St. Francis Retreat Center in Dewitt
January 21, 2023 via Zoom
February 18, 2023 via Zoom
March 25, 2023 at The St. Francis Retreat Center in Dewitt
April 15, 2023 at The St. Francis Retreat Center in Dewitt
May 13, 2023 at The St. Francis Retreat Center in Dewitt
June 10, 2023 at The St. Francis Retreat Center in Dewitt