April 17, 2020
To the Clergy and People of the Diocese of Milwaukee
Dear Friends in Christ,
Grace to you and peace in this week as we rejoice in Jesus’ resurrection. Easter week reminds us that God will make us more than conquerors through his deathless love. While our Easter celebrations are different, what remains the same is God’s love, grace, and victory given to us in Jesus Christ through the Holy Spirit.
I write you again today as your bishop, chief pastor and canonical overseer as promised. The purpose of this letter is to inform you of my decision to extend the pastoral direction that Clergy and Churches of the Diocese of Milwaukee suspend public worship until at least May 31. I will continue to assess this situation in light of developments and prepare to give directions for the future. It might be necessary to extend this directive even longer. This directive applies to all our congregations, clergy and licensed lay ministers.
I have already begun thinking about what safeguards will need to be in place when we do resume public worship. In the days ahead, I will be working together with staff, the Standing Committee, and the Executive Council to establish clear and comprehensive guidelines for our return to public worship when that is both possible and permitted.
I continue to spend my days in Zoom conferences, webinars, and phone calls. It is a very different way to do ministry. I am sure this is true for the majority of our clergy as well. I have never been as busy since when I began my ministry as your bishop 17 years ago. In the midst of it all, I am sustained by your God’s grace and your prayers. The joy of seeing some of you at Zoom coffee hours has been a joy for Cindy and me. We look forward to seeing you in this way until we can be together again.
Please know of my ongoing prayers for you all as this pandemic continues to unfold. If you would like me to pray for friends and loved ones who are working on the front lines of this pandemic, please send their names to me at and I will add their name to my list. I ask you to pray for me as I seek to minister faithfully at this time. Pray for all our clergy and people.
Grace to you and peace.