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Provisional Bishop Announced

FOR RELEASE DECEMBER 2, 2020 AT 1 PM CST
contact:  Sara Bitner,

 BISHOP JEFFREY D. LEE IS PROVISIONAL BISHOP DESIGNEE IN DIOCESE OF MILWAUKEE

The Standing Committee of the Episcopal Diocese of Milwaukee, a group of elected clergy and lay leaders, announced today that the Rt. Rev. Jeffrey D. Lee, current bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Chicago, is the designee for provisional bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Milwaukee. Bishop Lee will begin serving as the provisional bishop designee on April 1, 2021. The convention at which the clergy and lay representatives of the diocese will vote on Bishop Lee’s nomination will be held shortly thereafter, at a date to be determined but likely in June 2021. Bishop Lee will conclude his ministry as bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Chicago at the end of this month.

“On behalf of the Standing Committee, I’d like to express our enthusiasm and readiness to work with Bishop Jeff Lee in this season of our common life together. His love for the Diocese of Milwaukee is evident when you talk with him, and his roots here among us are deep,” said the Rev. Scott Leannah, president of the Standing Committee. “His love for the gospel, dedication to the Church, and knowledge of congregational and diocesan ministry will be a blessing and gift for us during this time of transition and new life. We urge your prayerful support for Bishop Lee and his family as he concludes his ministry in the Diocese of Chicago. We ask you to do all you can to support him in the role of provisional bishop of the Diocese of Milwaukee. He comes to us at a pivotal time in our shared life and we are grateful for his “yes”; we believe it was inspired by the Holy Spirit.”

The Diocese of Milwaukee’s current bishop, the Rt. Rev. Steven Andrew Miller, will retire on December 31 after a terminal sabbatical. As stated above, Bishop Lee will begin his ministry with the Diocese of Milwaukee on April 1. He will be working half-time for a two-year term.

The Rt. Rev. Jeffrey D. Lee was elected as the twelfth bishop of the Diocese of Chicago in 2007 and was consecrated on February 2, 2008. Bishop Lee is a graduate of the University of Michigan and Nashotah House Seminary and served as a curate, canon to the ordinary and church developer in the Diocese of Northern Indiana and as rector of churches in Wisconsin and Washington before being elected bishop. He and his wife, Lisa Rogers Lee, have two children, Katherine and Jonathan. You may find Bishop Lee’s full bio here.

“I am delighted at the prospect of returning to ministry with the people of the Diocese of Milwaukee. More than twenty years since our time at St. Christopher’s, River Hills, Lisa and I still remember fondly the warm friendships and vital ministry we experienced in Wisconsin,” said Bishop Lee. “I am honored that the Standing Committee has asked me to stand for election as bishop provisional, and all the people of the diocese will be in my prayers between now and when I hope to join you in April.”

Between January 1 and March 31, two assisting bishops will support and advise the Standing Committee in their role as the Ecclesiastical Authority for the Diocese of Milwaukee. The Rt. Rev. Matthew Gunter, bishop of Fond du Lac and provisional bishop of Eau Claire will be the assisting bishop January 1-February 15 and the Rt. Rev. Keith Whitmore, retired, will be the assisting bishop February 16-March 31. They will meet with the Standing Committee monthly and will be available for advice and pastoral care on an as-needed basis.  

The Episcopal Diocese of Milwaukee comprises 49 congregations in the 18 counties of southern Wisconsin. To learn more, visit www.diomil.org.

An earlier version of this message incorrectly reported that Bishop Lee will begin his ministry in the Diocese of Milwaukee in 2020 instead of 2021.

This message is also available as a pdf here.

Daily Advent Reflections Available

Advent is a time when we wait in joyful hope for the coming of our Savior, Jesus Christ. As we prepare for the Christ-child, we would like to offer you reflections to help you enter into the beauty and splendor of this glorious season. This year we have collected reflections based on the Daily Office readings from people, both lay and clergy, across the diocese.

These reflections are available to you in three different ways: 

1. For those who wish to have things printed off, we have a pdf of all the reflections for you. You may also make copies of the reflections available for people in your parish who do not have electronic access.

2. If you prefer to get an email with the day's reflection sent to you, you can sign up for that here. We just need your name and email address. I will then send you an email with the reflection each morning. 

3. Each day's reflection will be posted on a blog on our website. You can access that here.

A special thank-you to Mother Mindy Valentine Davis for compiling all the reflections. I'm so delighted that we have so many different voices represented for the Advent season. 

Wishing you a blessed Advent season!

~Sara Bitner, Communications Officer

Six Advent Resources for Home Use + Our Own Daily Advent Reflections!

  1. Maya Angelou and the Freedom Poetry of Advent from Salt Project: Salt Project has a number of Advent resources available that are appropriate for home use. One of the resources offered this year for Advent is this devotional. Biblical texts and simple, accessible practices interweave with Maya Angelou’s stirring vision of faith, freedom, and dignity. Week by week, as you wait, watch, and pray, you’ll walk toward Bethlehem – with Maya Angelou as your guide. 
  2. Those Who Dream: A Devotional for Advent, Year B from A Sanctified Art: Beginning with the first Sunday in Advent, this daily devotional follows the Revised Common Lectionary (Year B) through Epiphany. Each day offers something new: commentary, poetry, visual art, coloring pages, journaling and Sabbath prompts. As you walk through these prompts and readings day by day, may you dream alongside prophets and angels, Mary and the Magi. Together, may we seek and sow God’s dreams for our world.
  3. Advent Word: For the seventh year in a row, #AdventWord will gather prayers via a global, online advent calendar. Virginia Theological Seminary (VTS) in partnership with Forward Movement is offering 27 daily meditations and images during this holy season beginning Sunday, November 29. During a year of disparate worship and communities of prayer, AdventWord offers a way to reflect and pause for the Advent season and await the birth of Christ.
  4. While It Is Still Dark: An Advent Quiet Morning: On Friday, December 11, from 8 to 11 am (CST), Lifelong Learning of Virginia Theological Seminary will offer an Advent quiet morning. This year in particular, the Advent themes of exile and longing invite us to dwell more deeply in our experiences of brokenness and loss, darkness and “not yet,” always in the context of Christian hope. Spiritual Companion and poet Kathy Staudt will guide us – through poetry, journaling and guided prayer – to reclaim ways to live in hope and respond to this season’s holy invitations.
  5. Advent, Christmas, and Epiphany Activity Pack for Children and Families: This activity pack for children and families from Church Publishing includes a variety of ideas for young children and for intergenerational groups. 
  6. The Womb of Advent from Church Publishing: Mark Bozzuti-Jones offers a unique perspective on the season of Advent. Along with Scripture readings and prayers, he offers four weeks of meditations that focus on the growth of Jesus in the womb of Mary as he approaches the day of his birth.

And, coming soon, our very own diocesan Daily Advent Reflections! We are putting together reflections based on the Daily Office readings from people, both lay and clergy, across the diocese.  We will publish the reflections in a pdf that contains all of the reflections for those who do not have electronic access or prefer paper copies. The pdf will be shared in the E-NEWS. Individual churches will be responsible for printing and sending to their shut-ins or those without technology. Additionally, we will send these reflections out daily by email. If you'd like to sign up to receive the Diocese of Milwaukee Daily Advent Reflections, click here. 

Posted by Sara Bitner

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