The Mid-Atlantic Messenger Issue #128 • June 22, 2017
June 22, 2017

A Letter from C.S. Lewis

Dear Friends,

My friend, Bishop Neil Lebhar (a one-time Assistant Rector at Truro Church), shared with me a moving personal letter, written by C.S. Lewis to a mother, whose young son was concerned that he was loving Aslan more than Jesus—Aslan being the Lion whom Lewis created to represent Jesus in The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe and the other books of The Chronicles of Narnia.

The letter is an absolute delight. It is thoughtful, kind and written with a humble tenderness which moved me to tears. Here is what Lewis wrote:

Magdalene College 
May 6, 1955

Dear Mrs. Krieg,

Tell Laurence from me, with all my love:

1. Even if he was loving Aslan more than Jesus (I’ll explain in a moment why he can’t really be doing this) he would not be an idol-worshipper. If he was an idol-worshipper he’d be doing it on purpose, whereas he’s now doing it because he can’t help doing it, and trying hard not to do it. But God knows quite well how hard we find it to love Him more than anyone or anything else, and He won’t be angry with us as long as we are trying. And He will help us.

2. That Laurence can’t really love Aslan more than Jesus, even if he feels that’s what he is doing. For the things he loves Aslan for doing or saying are simply the things Jesus really did and said. So that when Laurence thinks he is loving Aslan, he is really loving Jesus: and perhaps loving Him more than he ever did before. Of course there is one thing Aslan has which Jesus has not – the body of a lion. (But remember, if there are other worlds and they need to be saved and Christ were to save them - as He would – He may really have taken all sorts of bodies in them which we don’t know about). Now if Laurence is bothered because he finds a lion-body seems nicer to him than the man-body, I don’t think he need be bothered at all. God knows all about the way a little boy’s imagination works (He made it, after all) and knows that at a certain age the idea of talking and friendly animals is very attractive. So I don’t think He minds if Laurence likes the lion-body. And anyway, Laurence will find in a few years, as he grows older, that feeling (liking the lion-body better) will die away of itself, without his taking any trouble about it. So he needn’t bother.

3. If I were Laurence I’d just say in my prayers something like this: “Dear God, if the things I have been thinking and feeling about those books are things you don’t like and are bad for me, please take those thoughts and feelings away. But if they are not bad, then please stop me from worrying about them. And help me every day to love you more in the way that really matters far more than any feelings or imaginations by doing what you want and growing more like you.” That is the sort of thing I think Laurence should say for himself; but it would be kind and Christian-like if he then added “And if Mr. Lewis has worried any other children by his books or done them any harm, then please forgive him and help him never to do it again.”

Will this help? I am terribly sorry to have caused such trouble, and would take it as a great favour if you would write again and tell me how Laurence goes on. I shall of course have him daily in my prayers. He must be a corker of a boy: I hope you are prepared for the possibility he might turn out a saint! I daresay the saints’ mothers have, in some ways, a rough time!

                                Yours sincerely,

                                 C. S. Lewis

It is amazing to think of the world-renowned scholar taking the time to hand-write such a letter for the sake of a young child. You can see a copy of the letter itself here, along with more about the now grown up boy and the ministry he’s involved with in Israel.

May God give us all the grace to disciple and encourage others with such love.

Faithfully yours in Christ,

The Rt. Rev. John A. M. Guernsey

Click here for Bishop Guernsey's letter in PDF format.
Into the Harvest Series

The Rev. Jay Baylor: "I never expected to end up in the city."

By Jay Baylor

I never expected to end up in the city. I’m the son of farmers and truck drivers from Central Pennsylvania. In 2006, I was challenged by Heidi Baker’s testimony to “go where only the Gospel could make a difference.” I felt the Lord guide us into East Baltimore, one of the most challenged neighborhoods in our region. 

My friends and I spent several years doing church in our house just outside the city line, while doing outreach into East Baltimore and learning about the city. We have done many prayer walks and block parties. We still go each week to a methadone clinic to give away coffee or iced tea and water and pray for folks coming for treatment for addiction.

We made some friends and built some trust in the neighborhood. One of those friends is Pastor Carletta Wright. She’s African-American and she grew up in East Baltimore, has lived most of her life there and most of her family lives there. She’s like a spiritual grandmother to the community. If there is a death in the community and they need a pastor, they call Carletta. If there’s a desperate need, they call Carletta. She became my person of peace in East Baltimore, connecting me to the community.

In 2014, Pastor Carletta Wright and I felt that the Lord was leading us to plant a church together. We wondered if we could establish a church that brought together people who are very different from one another to worship the Lord and work together to bring the light and love of the Gospel to our city with the supernatural power of the Holy Spirit.  Could we tear down walls that separate people? Could we erase the lines that have divided and wounded our city? We found a beautiful old church building in a strategic neighborhood right on the old lines between historically white neighborhoods and black neighborhoods. 

We want to live out the Gospel of Jesus that is for everyone, everywhere in a real and tangible way. We wanted to see if we could plant a church that looked as diverse as Baltimore, as beautiful and rich as the Kingdom of God. We wanted to bring together—rich and middle class and poor, employed and unemployed, black and white, Pentecostal, Charismatic and Anglican. We want our worship to honor and host the presence of God in all that we do-—in our singing, reading and preaching of the Word, in our prayers and intercessions and in our celebration of the Eucharist together. The power of the Holy Spirit and the operation of the gifts of the Spirit among the people is also essential for us. We expect the prophetic gift to flow, we ask for words of knowledge and we see physical and inner healing in our church regularly.

After nearly three years at this, we have much to celebrate. Our worship is multiethnic, coming from very different parts of the city.  We are still small—averaging around 25 on most Sundays, but we are full of hope and we’re learning to love each other better. A few families have felt called to move to Baltimore to join us and more are on the way! The Lord has sent us dynamic top-quality worship leaders.  We have been able to live out our care for the poor by collecting and giving away school supplies, coats and Thanksgiving meals to families in need at Collington Square Elementary School in East Baltimore. One of the things that has consistently given me the most joy is praying for people on the streets-—we are always welcomed, people almost always welcome prayer and we see the Lord do miracles all the time! 

We would welcome your prayers in several areas. We are praying for more support of every kind—we need more money, people and prayer support. We have favor in the schools, so we would love to have a children’s pastor to come and reach the children and families of our neighborhoods with the Gospel. As a missional church, we desire to establish Missional Communities to reach deeply into our neighborhoods, so we are praying for leaders to be raised up, developed and sent to establish and lead MC’s.  Perhaps the Lord is speaking to you about moving. Would you consider moving to Baltimore to join what God is doing here? Would you like to come visit and experience the power of God moving through you in salvation, healing, or the prophetic out on the streets? Come for a day, the weekend, a week or the rest of your life. We would welcome you!

I’m honored to serve on the Great Commission Committee for the Diocese of the Mid-Atlantic and I am committed to the Kingdom work of planting churches that plant churches. Our God is a God of mission and He is inviting us to join Him in declaring salvation to all creation. We have been rescued from our rebellion and failing so that we can become rescued rescuers. We have been healed and restored so that we can become healed healers. We have been reconciled with our Father through Christ Jesus and now we can serve as reconcilers, bringing others back into right relationship Him. We have been redeemed and restored as sons and daughters of the King of Kings and now we can take our place as co-heirs with Christ.

The Rev. Jay Baylor is vicar of Church of the Apostles in the City, Baltimore, MD. He serves as a member of the Great Commission Committee.

Synod 2017 countdown underway

By Lisa Anderson

The countdown continues for Synod 2017, our seventh annual Diocesan Synod coming November 17-18, 2017.

Mark the dates on your calendar and plan to attend! There is no charge—we want everyone to be able to attend.

Synod opens with a Eucharist Friday evening, November 17, 2017, at 7:30 at All Saints’ Church (14851 Gideon Drive, Woodbridge, VA 22192) .  It is the one time when we worship together as a diocese.  Here’s what some people have said about the opening Eucharist:

  • “I got teary eyed watching all our clergy process in together. What a wonderful group they are!”
  • “The music was great, and I enjoyed worshipping with so many people.”
  • “The reception after was nice and gave me a chance to visit with people and see all the exhibits.”

Our exhibit display is one of the main attractions at Synod 2017. It’s an excellent opportunity to meet our partners in ministry from around the country and the world. 

Click here for the Synod 2017 Timeline and click here for Synod 2017 Information and Documents.

At Synod 2017, we will be electing four members to the Standing Committee (two clergy and two lay) to serve three-year terms. In addition, three people will be elected to the Constitution Committee to serve three-year terms and nine people for the Ecclesiastical Court.  (five clergy and four lay members) Click here to download the nomination form. It is due September 7, 2017.

The diocesan canons also provide for four youth delegate positions at Synod 2017. The Standing Committee appoints the youth delegates from the nominations received. Youth should be between the ages 16-22. Click here to download the nomination form if you or someone you know may be interested to serve.

Registration for Synod will begin in early September. Please contact Lisa Anderson if you have questions at

To book accommodations, we have a reserved a block of rooms at Comfort Suites near All Saints’ Church (14525 Gideon Drive, Woodbridge, VA). Their number is 703-490-4100 and our group name is: DOMA Synod 2017.

Lisa Anderson is the Event Coordinator for the Diocese of the Mid-Atlantic.

The Rev. Rob Krech is ordained to the priesthood

On June 4, 2017, Bishop John Guernsey ordained the Rev. Rob Krech to the priesthood at Church of the Apostles in the City, Baltimore, MD. To God be the glory!

Looking for a good summer book or two to read?

By David Drake

The Rev. David Drake, rector of Church of the Resurrection (Lutherville, MD) has his summer reading recommendations! Check them out!

As we head into the summer, I want give a few summer reading suggestions which might stimulate your thinking, encourage your heart and deepen your faith. My “pick” of the summer is Malcolm Gladwell’s David and Goliath. I read it during my trip to Israel and it is a great perspective check on what is important and why we do what we do. On a side note, his testimony is that he came back to Christ after interviewing and spending time with the family portrayed in the last chapter.  

Here are a few others for beach, study, or devotional reading with a mix of history, biography, Christian living, and just plain good reading thrown in: 

Spiritual Growth / Worldview Development

World Events, History, and Great Stories

Classics You Might Have Missed

The Rev. Morgan Reed ordained to the priesthood

We give thanks to the Lord for the ordination of the Rev. Morgan Reed by Bishop John Guernsey to the priesthood on June 4, 2017, at Restoration Anglican Church in Arlington, VA!

Truro offers "Summer Worship Nights" starting June 23

By Jamie Brown

Truro Anglican Church (10520 Main Street, Fairfax, VA 22030) is excited to be offering “Summer Worship Nights” starting on Friday, June 23, 2017.

These nights are an opportunity for extended worship, Bible teaching, and ministry time as we respond in continued worship and prayer
Summer Worship Nights will be offered on eight consecutive Fridays, from June 23 through Aug 11, 2017 (6:00 – 7:00 p.m.) in the Main Church at Truro.

Nursery will be provided for infants and young children 0 – 48 months. Elementary school-aged kids will worship with their families for the first 30 minutes and then during the teaching and ministry time, will head downstairs together for an engaging 30-minute kids program.

We’d love to have you join us! For information, contact Jamie Brown at

Jamie Brown is Director of Worship and Arts at Truro Anglican Church, Fairfax, VA.

Caleb Burr is ordained to the transitional diaconate

Caleb Burr was ordained to the transitional diaconate by Bishop John Guernsey on June 13, 2017, at The Falls Church Anglican. Thanks be to God!

I'm taking back the lawn!

By Clint Kerley

By the end of last summer, our yard was in sad shape. We still had grass, but it was dry from the hot summer. What was amazing is that while the grass seemed to be suffering, the co-mingling weeds were thriving! As summer turned to fall I told Kim, “I’m taking back the lawn next year!” So, with seeding, fertilizing, and weed control, our yard is looking better this summer. It’s not a golf course yet, but maybe in a couple of years we’ll be close. See, what I forgot last year (don’t tell the Master Gardeners in our congregation) is that a nice yard doesn’t just happen. It takes care and attention. It takes nurturing and feeding to become what it could be. Most of all, it takes all of those things happening consistently over a long period of time.
The same is true for our spiritual lives, too. Spiritual growth doesn’t just happen. If we neglect our spiritual life, our souls can become dry and brittle. Weeds can pop up and choke out what is good. We have to care for our souls, feeding them and nurturing them so that they have all the necessary nutrients to grow. And, to the frustration of those of us who like instant gratification, the key ingredients are consistency and time. Sadly, only weeds grow fast. Good grass takes a long time to grow. The same with spiritual fruit. 
As you’re looking out at your yard this year or while you’re cutting your grass, ask yourself this question: “How is my spiritual life looking?” If it’s dry and barren, take time this summer to care for your soul. Give it good food. And over time, watch God turn it into something healthy and beautiful!

Clint Kerley is rector of Immanuel Anglican Church in Woodbridge, VA.

Christ the King Anglican to celebrate 10th Anniversary

Mark your calendars for a glorious anniversary celebration on Saturday, September 23, 2017! Christ the King (Alexandria, VA) will be celebrating its tenth anniversary with an outdoor fall festival. The next day on Sunday, September 24, 2017, they will give thanks for their anniversary during their Sunday's service and then that evening celebrate with a formal evening party and program for adults on Sunday evening. All are welcome! Click here to learn more!

Dr. Praveen Sethupathy to speak on faith and genetics

By Alyssa Abraham

What:     Conversation with Dr. Praveen Sethupathy
When:    Monday, June 26, 2017, 6:30 PM to 8:30 PM
Where:   National Press Club 
RSVP:    Click here to register

The Trinity Forum, BioLogos, and Church of the Advent DC invite you to attend an Evening Conversation with Dr. Praveen Sethupathy entitled “Genes, Self, and Soul” on the topic of faith and genetics.

This event will be held at the National Press Club (529 14th St NW, Washington, DC 20045) from 6:30-8:30 p.m. on Monday, June 26, 2017.

Responding to Sethupathy, will be Dr. Richard Middleton, a professor of Biblical Worldview and Exegesis at Northeastern Seminary. The event is the second in the Trinity Forum’s four-part series on “Discovery and Doxology." During the discussion, we will discuss the ways in which new discoveries in the field of genetics help us understand both our own mind and the mind of our Maker.

Click here to register.

Alyssa Abraham is Director of Membership and Events at The Trinity Forum in Washington, D.C.

Christian Healing Institute offers new opportunities

By Katherine Francis

Wednesday Night Healing Class
When: Begins Sept. 6, 2017
Where: The Falls Church Anglican, Falls Church, VA
Registration is now open for this fall’s Wednesday Healing Class which begins Sept 6, 2017. It is a free class open to all. This will be our twelfth year presenting it. Last year we had people attending from over 40 different metro area churches. Here is the registration form and class schedule. The class is a great place to learn about the many aspects of Christian Healing and to receive it! If you have any questions, feel free to contact Chuck Cook at
Katherine Francis is a staff assistant at the Christian Healing Institute at The Falls Church Anglican (Falls Church, VA).

Are you handy? If so, Church of the Word is looking for you!

By Robin Adams

Church of the Word (Gainesville, VA) invites a few handypersons to join us for a day or two during the summer to complete some repairs and upgrades to our building. Times and projects to be announced soon. Please contact our office at 703-754-9673 or if you have some time and skills to help. The Rev. Robin Adams is rector of Church of the Word in Gainesville, VA.

DOMACAST: Into the Harvest series launched

The Diocese of the Mid-Atlantic brings insightful podcasts featuring a cross section of speakers from all walks of our Christian life.  Listen on the diocesan website and subscribe to DOMACAST here.

We’re launching a new series on DOMACAST called Into the Harvest. This series will focus on the mission and ministry of church planting and church health. This work in the Diocese of the Mid-Atlantic is led by what’s called the Great Commission Committee—or the GCC. Tom Herrick, Canon for Church Planting for the Diocese of the Mid-Atlantic—as well as the Executive Director of the Titus Institute—is chair of the GCC. We asked Tom to be our first guest in this new series. Listen online or subscribe today!

Click here to listen online.

You may also find featured talks in the DOMACAST podcast available for free in the iTunes Store here.  You may listen to episodes online, download to your device, or subscribe.

Check out the Jobs Board

One of the top hits on the Diocese of the Mid-Atlantic website is our Jobs Board that advertises emploment in our churches and related organizations in the diocese.

Click here to see the latest employment openings. To request that a position be posted, please send an email to Mary Ailes with the position title, a brief description of the position, a website link to further information if available, the deadline for applications if appropriate, and the email address of a point of contact.  

Get the message out and pass the word

It's easy to subscribe to receive the Mid-Atlantic Messenger. All are encouraged to sign up to receive the official newsletter of the Diocese of the Mid-Atlantic. You may post the link on your Facebook page, tweet it or run the information in your weekly service leaflet.

To receive the Mid-Atlantic Messenger just click here and fill out the simple form online. After you finish completing the form, be sure to click on the link sent to you in your confirmation email and you are all set!  Questions?  Contact Mary Ailes at

The Mid-Atlantic Messenger

Tuesday, July 11, 2017
12:00 noon

Upcoming Events

Summer Worship Nights
Truro Anglican Church
Fairfax, VA

Provincial Council
Wheaton, IL

Provincial Assembly
Wheaton, IL

Dr. Paveen Sethupathy
National Press Club
Washington, DC

Wednesday Night Healing Class
The Falls Church Anglican
Falls Church, VA

Christ the King 10th Anniversary
Christ the King Anglican Church
Alexandria, VA

Send us your events!
Click here!

Diocesan Dates

Child Sexual Abuse Prevention Workshops
These workshops satisfy the Diocese of the Mid-Atlantic training requirements for clergy, vestry members, staff and volunteers who work with youth or children.  There is no charge for the workshop, but registration is required. Click here for dates.

College of Bishops
June 26, 2017
Wheaton, IL

Provincial Council
June 27, 2017
Wheaton, IL

Provincial Assembly 2017
June 28-30, 2017
Wheaton, IL

Wardens' Gathering
September 9, 2017
9:30 a.m.-3:00 p.m.
All Saints' Church
Woodbridge, VA

Clergy Day
September 19, 2017
9:30 a.m.-3:00 p.m.
All Saints' Church
Woodbridge, VA
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The Diocese of the Mid-Atlantic is a regional diocese of the Anglican Church in North America dedicated to reaching North America with the transforming love of Jesus Christ. The Diocese consists of 41 congregations in Virginia, Maryland, Delaware, Washington, D.C. and northeastern North Carolina.