Episcopal Evangelism Society Announces New Board Members, Approved Grant Projects

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The Episcopal Evangelism Society (EES) announces 2 new board members and new grants awarded after meeting in Chicago, IL.

EES Board Members

Newly Elected Board Members Zdancewicz and Ferlo

These new leaders will help us continue to sharpen our focus on opportunities for innovative evangelism in the 21st century.

The Board of Directors of the Episcopal Evangelism Society, or EES, met at Bexley Seabury headquarters in Chicago, IL November 3-5, 2015. Two new board members were elected to three-year terms while 2 new Evangelism for the 21st Century grants were awarded.

The Very Rev. Roger A. Ferlo, Ph. D. and Ms. Heather H. Zdancewicz, MBA are the newly elected EES board members. Ferlo is the president of Bexley Seabury and professor of biblical interpretation and the practice of ministry. Zdancewicz is Vice President for Administration and Finance at Virginia Theological Seminary.

“Sound financial management is not just good practice but a ministry,” notes Zdancewicz. “Being able to share my skills and knowledge with an organization that offers seminarians opportunities outside of regular course of studies is a privilege.“

“I have respected the work of EES for many years, both as a grantee and as a mentor of grantees,” adds Ferlo. “I am excited to participate in the ongoing work of EES.”

"These new leaders will help us continue to sharpen our focus on opportunities for innovative evangelism in the 21st century," notes EES Executive Director Day Smith Pritchartt. "And the new grant work will take the Gospel, and the church, into new and exciting places."

In addition to electing new members, the EES Board awarded two Evangelism for the 21st Century grants. Emily Sutterfield and Ragan Sutterfield, spouse and M.Div. candidate ’16 from the Virginia Theological Seminary, will create "Cultivating Hope in a Time of Climate Change," a curriculum for parishes. Teresa Wakeen, M.Div. candidate ’16 from the Church Divinity School of the Pacific, will establish a new worshipping community at Crossroads of Michigan, a social services provider.

The Sutterfields' curriculum will include resources, video interviews and case studies for parishes who want to bring the theological perspective of hope to their environmental work. Together, they have significant writing and curriculum development skills. After piloting the curriculum in several locations, they hope to distribute it through the Center for the Ministry of Teaching at VTS.

Wakeen has previously volunteered at Crossroads of Michigan and was drawn to provide the spiritual and pastoral support to her clients that was beyond the scope of her counselor’s position. She will return in the role of chaplain, and will offer prayer gatherings, teaching and Eucharist throughout the week to clients and to those in the nearby community. She will also create a network to fund the ministry after the grant has expired. The office of Congregational Life in the Diocese of Michigan will designate the community as a New Mission Field Congregation.

More about the Episcopal Evangelism Society
EES supports innovative evangelism by awarding Evangelism for the 21st Century grants for projects that will share the Gospel in new and exciting ways, and help take the Episcopal church where she needs to be. Episcopalians in accredited seminary communities - students, faculty, staff and their spouses and partners - are eligible to apply for E-21 grants. Read more about the 150-year history of EES at http://www.ees1862.org/ .

More About The Very Rev. Roger A. Ferlo, Ph. D.
Ferlo came to Bexley Seabury in 2012 from Virginia Theological Seminary where he was associate dean and director of the Institute of Christian Formation and Leadership and also served as professor of religion and culture. His vast experience in theological education, along with his leadership of an institution that is modeling innovation in structure and partnership, will be invaluable as EES continues to fund innovative evangelism in the Episcopal Church. Ferlo is a member of St. Paul and the Redeemer in Chicago.

More About Ms. Heather H. Zdancewicz, MBA
Zdancewicz is Vice President for Administration and Finance at Virginia Theological Seminary. Prior to joining the faculty in this position in 2007, she managed all aspects of the seminary’s accounting function during fifteen years of service. Her financial acumen will be of critical importance in directing the EES budgeting and portfolio management processes. She teaches seminarians the Ministry of Money course and serves on the Board of Trustees at Kanuga Conference Center. Zdancewicz is a member of St. Andrew’s in Burke, VA.

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Day Smith Pritchartt
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