Bringing together young, creative, entrepreneurial, proven, clergy leaders to support and enhance their missionary call and to spiritually and numerically grow the Episcopal Church.
2019 ANNUAL REPORT
Looking Ahead at 2020
Letter from Our Executive Director
Letter from Our Chairman
Statement of Financial Position
2019 at a Glance
Statement of Financial Activities
Board of Directors
As you will see within this Annual Report, the work of The Gathering of Leaders has expanded beyond the wildest imaginations of those of us who sat down in 2004 with Bishop Claude Payne to dream of a hope-filled resource for mission and evangelism in the name of Jesus within The Episcopal Church. It has been my great joy to watch the growth of this resource from its earliest beginnings as GOL has sought to be faithful to its original vision and core values, while being flexible enough to accommodate the inevitable revisions and adjustments that missional landscapes forever require.
I rejoice in the new partnership that GOL has established with the Episcopal Church Foundation that will bring expanded spheres of influence and synergies to both organizations. Our ten year relationship with the Seminary of the Southwest has been an excellent one and we are deeply thankful to SSW for being our legal host over this past decade. However, as the old hymn said, “New occasions teach new duties...,” the time seemed right to become our own 501(c)3 organization and to establish this new relationship with ECF.
The capacity for GOL to respond to immediate and unique needs in consultation with other Episcopal institutions is evidenced by the new clergy “ Seeking Resilience” initiative in the midst of the current pandemic. That ad hoc initiative is described elsewhere in this report.
In an ongoing way the GOL board continues to explore ways to expand our leadership models to clergy and lay persons who do not fit into the traditional or dominant model of church leadership. We continually seek to expand the capacities of GOL while being faithful to our core mission principles. At a very personal level, that is what makes the ongoing work with GOL so very exciting.
I want to thank Haley Bankey, the Executive Director of GOL, for her extraordinarily creative leadership over the past year. I am reminded of the prophet Joel’s words when her youthful capacity to dare to see visions - to imagine what could be - encourages this old man to dream what GOL can become.
I also want to thank the Board of Directors who give of themselves in time and financial resources to assure that we are being faithful to our founding vision and to ask the terribly important questions about what it means to be faithful to that vision today, and tomorrow. Their leadership impacts the mission of GOL at every level.
Finally, my heartfelt thanks to all who have supported The Gathering of Leaders through your participation in our Gatherings, through your financial support, and through your witness to the value of this ministry. This network is increasing each year, and the sustainability of GOL is dependent upon your ongoing support and witness.
Thank you all. It has been a very good year. May God continue to give us the opportunity to serve in God’s name.
The Rt. Rev. Duncan M. Gray, III
Chair, Board of Directors
The Gathering of Leaders
The Rt. Rev. Duncan M. Gray, III
The work of The Gathering of Leaders has expanded beyond the wildest imaginations of those of us who dreamed of a hope-filled resource for The Episcopal Church.
Chairman, Board of Directors
Chairman, Board of Directors (Cont.)
Change seems like the only constant for the Gathering of Leaders as we continue to grow our membership, connect our clergy participants, and begin new and exciting initiatives.
In 2019 we held four successful Gatherings on the theme of Unity & Division in the Missionary Church and 116 clergy participated in these in-person events. They dived deep, struggled with leading in such a deeply divided time in our history, and learned new ways to lead the hearts and minds of our nation into unity through Christ.
Throughout the year our in-person Gatherings connected clergy from 52 diocese and two different countries. We also welcomed 51 new participants this year as they attended their first Gathering, and we received 172 new nominations to foster the young, creative, proven-leaders in our church.
Our online presence continues to grow as we connect our clergy participants through our website resources, online Facebook community, and member directory. Plans this year continue to see the completion of a new online community through our website.
This year also brought two significant changes into the day to day operations of our organization. In early Spring we received our official 501c3 determination letter from the IRS thanks to the skilled guidance of K&L Gates law firm, and in the fall we entered into a collaborative partnership with the Episcopal Church Foundation (more on this later in this report).
Founder Rt. Rev. Claude Payne said from the beginning that GOL was designed to be a resource for the church for as long as innovation and creativity were needed, and I believe we are living into that call each and every day!
A Letter from Our Executive Director
Creativity and innovation continue to impact our church through our clergy participants
The Gathering of Leaders
as we grow so do our participants. The voices from around the country serve to deepen their mission and work in the church.
Current participants nominated 172 of their clergy peers in 2019 to become part of the GOL network. This is more than the total number of clergy who attended a Gathering in 2020.
We're seeing a marked increase in first-time participants, showing our continued and increased relevancy to the clergy we serve.
We encourage our participants to make attending a Gathering a part of their ongoing continuing education. Of those returning for at least their 2nd Gathering, 80% attended within 3 years of a previous Gathering.
As of early December 2019 when this data was compiled, 5 out of the last 8 bishops elected have been part of the Gathering of Leaders' network.
in the missionary church
Unity & Division
Jesus prayed for his disciples that we might all be one, as he and the Father are one. What does “unity in Christ” mean, and how do we lead people of faith in the midst of a divided and demonizing culture? How does “agreeing to disagree” affect our ability to proclaim the gospel, heal, and reconcile? How can we call on the teachings of Jesus to model risky, compelling, and deep conversations that do not end in division?
The Rev. Francisco Garcia
Assistant Chaplain, St. Augustine's Episcopal, Nashville, TN
The Rev. Phil LaBelle
Rector, St. Mark's Episcopal, Southborough, MA
The topic of unity and division in the church was a timely one, and each theological reflection, presentation, and scripture study prompted us to discuss in small group settings. I felt as if I was in a different kind of thin place. I had a mix of practical, spiritual, and theological ideas swirling in my head, but in a way that felt inviting and challenging.
Gathering at Malibu
The Rev. Rebecca Tankersley
Associate Rector, Church of the Transfiguration, Dallas, TX
I was reminded once again that the Gathering is a gift. Far too often we think our schedules so overly packed that we cannot possibly get away. And yet it is precisely when we reach this point that we should gather with fellow disciples of Jesus who want to boldly serve the missional church.
Over the course of our two and a half days together, we explored important questions. Does unity require uniformity? What a gift it was to have the space to retreat from the daily work of pastoring our churches to reflect on the bigger picture, to be restored by the beauty of God’s creation, and to reflect on our mission to the world around us!
2019 Gathering Reflections
The REv. Matthew Hanisian
Rector, St. Martin's-in-the-Field, Severna Park, MD
I did not expect to see the vulnerability and humility that I did during GOL. I am thankful for this experience. Thank God for conversations that share the successes and challenges in ministry, reminding you that you are not alone – others are working to build the Kingdom with you. Thank God for space to pray, rest, learn, and rejuvenate. Thank God for Gathering of Leaders.
Since I am new to Texas, and kind of new to the Anglican / Episcopal tradition, I realized how where you are makes a difference. That is, that we are in different contexts and are called to claim the same universal story and identity that makes us one. It is not that we are prayed to be one minded, we are different and respond to our Christian discipleship in different ways, but we are one, universal church. God is one and she is everywhere but people are not.
I came away from my time in Jackson with a new group of colleagues from all over the country. I learned about how my colleagues handle dis-unity and how we rejoice in the ways the church can unify people as only the church can. I learned about how my colleagues are uniting people amidst the hardest times and in the face of the greatest challenges in their ministry. I now have an additional community from which I can draw upon their experiences, both their successes and failures.
The REv. beth wyndham
church planter, St. Nicholas episcopal church, spring branch, TX
The REv. uriel Lopez
vicar, Iglesia Episcopal San Romero, Houston, TX
Gathering at Mississippi
The gathering’s theme of “Unity and Division in Mission” was, and is, a theme that is close to my heart and apparently the heart of many of the other attendees. Given the state of politics and lack of any constructive, civil dialogue on the national level, rendering many of our churches into echo chambers of the latest news sound bite or social media meme, it was refreshing to gather with a group of colleagues who are dedicated to ushering in God’s Kingdom in our community.
The REv. Canon Michael Horvath
REctor, St. Michael's Episcopal Church, Bristol, RI
The REv. Dr. Allen Robinson
Rector, Grace church Brooklyn Heights, Brooklyn, NY
Gathering at Colorado
What felt clear from our conversations about unity and division is that there is no one right way to do this work. We, in this ministry, are all wrestling with incarnations of this topic in our communities and congregations. It is hard and holy work, and I found myself renewed and reinvigorated for the work after this time with peers. To be reminded that the work we do, often in the silos of our own communities, is shared throughout the church is perhaps the greatest gift I received from this time at the Gathering of Leaders.
The REv. Elizabeth Riley
Rector, Emmanuel Church, Mercer Island, WA
My attendance at the Gathering of Leaders (GOL) is nothing short of a profoundly transformative experience! Not only is GOL a period of personal, spiritual, and leadership development defined by renewal, reflection, and refreshment, but is also an opportunity to reconnect with old friends and make new ones. It is deeply encouraging listening to clergy colleagues share the good work of ministry happening all across the Church, and, in particular, within the local congregational matrix and landscape bringing the Gospel of Christ alive in new, exciting, inspiring and vibrant ways.
Unity and division are the often unspoken subtext of life in the city of Pittsburgh. Like much of the country, it divides on issues of race, class, politics and a host of other topics... Conversations in table groups and over meals began to translate the call and aspiration of that initial presentation into the context of daily life. The discussions were wide-ranging, deep, and consistently hope-filled. And while these conversations were sometimes difficult, they were a joy to have.
The REv. Neil Raman
Associate Rector, Calvary Episcopal Church, Pittsburgh, PA
My first experience of a Gathering of Leaders was an opportunity to go more deeply into the theme of Unity and Division through theological reflection, bible study, practical application, small group work, worship and networking. It was a rich exchange of perspectives, stories, experience and prayer... One of the implicit gifts of the conference was that, as leaders, we are called to engage in the tension between unity and division. This is not something we can avoid, and in fact, it is a conversation we are called to embrace as an expression of what building beloved community looks like.
The REv. Canon Janet Waggoner
Canon to the Ordinary, Diocese of Fort Worth, TX
The Rt. Rev. Samuel Rodman
Bishop, Diocese of North Carolina, Raleigh, NC
Gathering at Lake Logan
The theme “unity and division” hits close to home in my diocesan context, Fort Worth, in which the largest number of congregations were taken out of The Episcopal Church – but not for the reasons that are often assumed! Not because we all agree with one another on any single thing (we don’t!), but because we each had to figure out what being a Christian and being an Episcopalian meant to us. This articulation of our relationships with God and one another draws our congregations to deeper engagement in the lives of individuals and communities – and helps us to grow!
Collaborative Partnership with the Episcopal Church Foundation
In the fall of 2019 The Gathering of Leaders (GOL) entered a new collaborative partnership with the Episcopal Church Foundation (ECF) through which each organization will benefit from the skills and resources of the other while bringing hope-filled, positive change to the Episcopal Church and its leaders.
Conversation between GOL and ECF began as the GOL Board of Directors was exploring long-term funding models that would ensure the sustainability of the organization while freeing up its leadership to continue to innovate and stay at the forefront of adaptive leadership in the Episcopal Church. We are grateful for our previous partnership with the Seminary of the Southwest, though it dissolves with this new arrangement.
The Rt. Rev. Duncan Gray, III (Res.), Chairman of the Board for GOL, says, “I am excited about the unique opportunity that this new partnership offers and look to our future together with much anticipation. We are convinced that the synergy created by our two organizations with mutually compatible missions will be a source of great renewal throughout our church.”
“ECF’s new relationship with Gathering of Leaders enhances our ability to support transformational clergy leaders and empower them to help shape the Episcopal Church of the future,” remarked Donald Romanik, President of ECF. “This collaboration will expand our network, increase our impact and enable us to live into our mission in new and creative ways.”
Often labeled the “research and development branch of the Episcopal Church”, GOL will now have the opportunity of sharing this message and these ideas with the wider church beyond our membership because of this new partnership with ECF.
The leadership of GOL is excited to see what this partnership can bring to its member-clergy and congregations, and enthusiastic about the opportunities that will arise through the partnership.
As 2020 continues and the world-wide pandemic is changing everything we know about modern life, the church is adapting and so are its leaders.
GOL is poised to bring together some of the top clergy leaders in the church to help discover the uncharted water of this new landscape.
While GOL has already had to cancel one in-person Gathering for 2020, plans are underway for a virtual Gathering to address pastoring during a pandemic, administrating in new ways, and continuing to be the church in a time of physical distancing.
GOL has also established a pastoral response directly for its membership through facilitated, twice-weekly, virtual calls named "Seeking Resilience: Loss - Hope - Joy. These times are geared to be a vessel for mutual self-care for our participants as they too deal with the emotions and hardships of quarantine and COVID-19.
We don't yet know how 2020 will shape up, but we do know we are in this together and ready to tackle the challenge together through our network and through Christ.
Heading into uncharted territory with the leaders of the church
Looking ahead at 2020
Plans for 2020
Liabilities & Fund Balance
total current assets
Fund Balance - Restricted
Cash and Cash Equivalents
as of 12/31/2019
Fund Balance - Unrestricted
total Liabilities and Equity
Long Term Pledges
Unfunded Scholarship Discounts
Total Program Services
Annual Fund Contributions
Conference Center & Meals
Jan. 1, 2019 - Dec. 31, 2019
Seminary of the Southwest
**The 2019 budget planned for use of cash reserves and targeted fundraising to cover the difference in income over expense.
Management & General
Benefits & Payroll Tax
(Cont.) 2019 Statement
Total Management & General
Supplies & Office
Diocese of East Tennessee
Diocese of Idaho
Diocese of Maryland
Diocese of North Carolina
Diocese of Olympia
Diocese of Pennsylvania
Diocese of San Diego
Diocese of Spokane
Diocese of Tennessee
Diocese of Texas
Diocese of West Tennessee
Diocese of Western Massachusetts
Diocese of Western North Carolina
Episcopal Church in Connecticut
Congregations and Other
Christ Church Cathedral, Cincinnati, OH
Christ Church Episcopal, Tulsa, OK
Christ Church Parish, Port Republic, MD
Christ Episcopal Church, New Bern, NC
Church of the Holy Spirit, Houston, TX
Church of the Holy Spirit, Lake Forest, IL
Church of the Resurrection, Oklahoma City, OK
Church Pension Group, New York, NY
Epiphany Church, Richardson, TX
Parish of Trinity Church, New York, NY
St. Andrew's Episcopal Church, Encinitas, CA
St. John's Episcopal Church, Tallahassee, FL
St. Luke's Episcopal Church, South Glastonbury, CT
St. Martin's-in-the-Field, Severna Park, MD
St. Michael's Episcopal Church, Bristol, RI
St. Paul's Church in the Village of Flatbush, Brooklyn, NY
St. Stephen's Episcopal Church, Huntsville, TX
The Chapel of the Cross, Chapel Hill, NC
The Episcopal Church, New York, NY
Virginia Theological Seminary, Alexandria, VA
Washington National Cathedral, Washington, DC
In Kind support
gifts listed alphabetical by category - Institutions
K & L Gates
St. George Episcopal Church, San Antonio, TX
Episcopal Foundation of Texas
Ashford, The Rev. Raphiell
Carroll, The Rev. Bill
Demo, The Rev. Gar
Dunkle, The Very Rev. Kurt & Cathleen
Fromberg, The Rev. Dr. Paul
Garcia, The Rev. Christopher & Cheryl
Girata, The Rev. Chris
Godfrey, The Rev. Steve
Gray, The Rt. Rev. Duncan M. & Kathryn
Gray-Reeves, The Rt. Rev. Mary
Gunn, The Rev. Canon Scott
Holcombe, The Rev. Matt
Jefferts Schori, The Rt. Rev. Katharine
Lopez, The Rev. Uriel & Maria Mateus Cuesta
Loy, The Rev. Reed
Makins, The Rev. Claire
McKone-Sweet, The Rev. Mark & Kathleen
Mellott, The Rev. Emily
Pankey, The Rev. Steve
Payne, The Rt. Rev. Claude
Prior, The Rt. Rev. Brian
Raining, The Rev. Dr. Hillary
Rencher, The Rev. Ollie
Riley, The Rev. Elizabeth
Schaefer, The Rev. Joslyn
Tankersley, The Rev. Rebecca
Taylor, The Rev. Jemonde
Vano, The Rev. Mary
Zelley, The Rev. Ed
Zust, The Rev. Vicki
gifts listed alphabetical by category - Individuals
Laur, Johnathan & Tiffany
MacGregor, Mary & Bob
Piedfort, Mark & Pam
Dr. Scott Bader-Saye
The Rev. Ronald Byrd
The Rt. Rev. Jeff W. Fisher
The Rt. Rev. Duncan M. Gray, III (Chair)
The Rt. Rev. Daniel G.P. Gutierrez
The Rev. Dr. Cynthia Briggs Kittredge
Canon Mary M. Macgregor (Secretary)
The Rev. Emily A. Mellott
Ms. Diane B. Pollard
The Rev. Dr. Hillary Raining
The Rev. Ollie Rencher
The Rt. Rev. Gregory H. Rickel
The Rt. Rev. Katharine Jefferts Schori
The Rev. Robert Jemonde Taylor (Treasurer)
Ms. Cynthia McWhirter
Academic Dean, Seminary of the Southwest, Austin, TX
Church Missioner for Black Ministries, New York, NY
Bishop Suffragan, Diocese of Texas, Tyler, TX
Bishop (Resigned), Diocese of Mississippi, MS
Bishop, Diocese of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA
Dean & Presidents, Seminary of the Southwest, Austin, TX
Founding Member, League City, TX
Rector, Trinity Episcopal, Moorsetown, NJ
New York, NY
Rector, St. Christopher's, Gladwyne, PA
Rector, Grace-St. Luke's, Memphis, TN
Bishop, Diocese of Olympia, Seattle, WA
Assisting Bishop, Diocese of San Diego, San Diego, CA
Rector, St. Ambrose, Raleigh, NC
San Antonio, TX