Wednesday, October 31, 2012

More BBQ fun!

Recognize any of these folks? I thought so!

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Bishop Jake's Wednesday Message

October 24, 2012

Dear Friends in Christ,

Last Friday I had the privilege of celebrating and preaching at the Red Mass, hosted this year by Mtr. Catherine Thompson and the good folks at Trinity, Natchitoches. As you may know, in the Red Mass we seek God’s wisdom and guidance for our jurists.

Mtr. Catherine and the rest of the worship planners and leaders did us proud with a reverent and uplifting service, and I am very grateful for their hard work and liturgical excellence. It was especially exciting that the Louisiana Supreme Court attended the service.
For this week’s Wednesday message, I’m offering this excerpt from my sermon at the Red Mass:

Life is not fair. 

Sometimes the good among us meet with calamity and the evil prosper. Stinkers get off the hook and good guys have been known to finish last.

No one chooses the family or the social class or the town or the historical period into which they are born. And the circumstances of our birth can make all the difference to the shape and direction our life takes.

Some social and economic conditions give a decided advantage to the lucky stiffs born into them, while some socioeconomic settings present obstacles so great that even the most industrious and clever will never completely overcome them.

The inherent unfairness of this life leads some to cynicism, bitter resentment, and even despair. The reason for their spiritual disintegration is clear. They have correctly observed that life is unfair and yet have erroneously concluded that this is all that there is. The dream of justice is just that for them, a dream. A pipe dream. And so for them it would be better to have no dream at all than to have one that leaves us feeling cheated and shortchanged.

By contrast, that same dream--the dream of perfect justice--inspires some among us to devote our entire lives to raising up what has been cast down, to rectifying wrongs committed by self-serving hearts, to protecting the weak, to guarding the dignity of every human being, and to promoting the common good even for those who have precious little regard for it.

If you would like to read the rest of the sermon, you can find it at “Justice and Hope” at Pelican Anglican. Or, you can listen to the audio version here.

Blessings in the coming week.

The Rt. Rev. Jacob W. Owensby, Ph.D.
The Diocese of Western Louisiana
P. O. Box 2031, Alexandria, LA 71309-2031

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Bishop Jake's Wednesday Message

October 17, 2012   

Dear Sisters and Brothers in Christ,

Thank you all for the encouraging emails and texts and FB messages about Diocesan Convention. Gathering with you in common faith and mutual joy has energized and delighted me! It’s a gift to know that so many of you feel the same way. Thanks to the Alexandria Convocation for doing such a fabulous job hosting our Convention and to the Commission on Liturgy and Music for crafting such meaningful worship!

Now what will we do with the energy, excitement, fellowship, and vision we shared last weekend? We will take the next step. Share with your congregations the vision of the beloved community. Take time to consider the practices that make your congregation vital and form strategies for supporting and enhancing these practices.

In my sermons I will begin speaking more intentionally about core Christian practices. So I encourage you to keep an eye on Pelican Anglican or tune in to my audio sermons.

I also plan to continue to gather with the Commissions for the purpose of retasking toward congregational vitality. But I also charge the chairs of these Commissions to establish monthly meetings to begin visioning how they can help encourage vitality in their specific ministry area.

I am also available for midweek visits to offer a teaching about Christian practices and congregational vitality. Once St. John’s calls a new Rector, Fr. Bill Bryant will also be available as my new Canon for Congregational Vitality.

There is one piece of late-breaking news I want to share. Just before the Convention opened, Jamie Simon notified me that he could no longer serve as chair of the Commission for Youth and Youth Adults. His work situation has become too demanding to devote the time he needed. I want to thank Jamie for his work in the past.

Brooks Boylan has accepted my call to serve as the chair of the Commission for Youth and Young Adults, and I thank Brooks for taking on the challenge with very short notice. He has already called a meeting of the Commission and we can look for some exciting ministry from that energetic group.

Let me encourage you once again to help me stay in touch with you. Send me a friend request on Facebook. Subscribe to Pelican Anglican. Listen to my sermons at

Here’s how to subscribe to Pelican Anglican by email. Go to Enter your email address in the box that says “Follow by Email.” Hit submit and follow the instructions. You will receive an email from FeedBurner in your email inbox. Open that email and click the link inside that email to verify your subscription. It only takes a couple of minutes. Once you’re done, you will receive an excerpt from each new post to alert you that something new is available to read.

Prefer listening to sermons? Go to Click the sermon you want to hear. You can subscribe to these podcasts as well, but an explanation will have to wait for another time. Please note, some Pelican Anglican posts are essays and will not appear in audio form.

As always, you can simply go to the web and click the appropriate links for both my blog and my audio sermons.

The Holy Spirit is moving in our Diocese! He is binding us together in love, equipping us with gifts, filling us with godly power, and sending us on a great adventure. We are motivated by the power of God’s love. What a joy and a privilege it is to serve you and love you as your bishop!

In Christ’s Love,

The Rt. Rev. Jacob W. Owensby, Ph.D.
The Diocese of Western Louisiana
P. O. Box 2031, Alexandria, LA 71309-2031

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Food, Music & Friends!

Is the best thing about the barbecue, old friends who show up...?

...Or the food and music?

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Interfaith this week!

Conversations about Ouachita Parish
The Rev. Dale Farley, Messiah Lutheran, and Minister Mary Ann Cooper, Bethel COGIC, co-chair a recent Interfaith assembly.
Tuesday, Oct. 9, 6:15 p.m.
New Light Baptist Church
1623 So. 4th St.

A diverse group of people will gather Tuesday evening to share a potluck meal and their visions for Monroe and Ouachita Parish. Episcopalians volunteered to provide desserts. To keep it simple, I have encouraged everyone to pick up a dozen cookies.
Northern & Central Louisiana Interfaith is a coalition of primarily faith-based institutions that purposefully crosses lines that historically divide people, lines of religion, race, socio-economic status and geography. We cross these lines in order to work together to improve the quality of life in the community for everyone.
I will co-chair Tuesday's meeting with The Rev. James Johnson, pastor of New Light Baptist Church.  If anyone needs a ride, I plan to depart from campus no later than 5:45 p.m.

To drive yourself, go south on Hwy 165 to Winnsboro Road (a.k.a. Hwy 15), turn right, go to either 4th or 5th St., turn right again. In the first block, you'll see New Light Baptist Church, with a large parking lock and blonde brick buildings that extend from 5th to 4th St., just around the corner from Winnsboro Rd.

If you have a vision for Ouachita Parish, this will be a great place to share it. Hope to see you there! 
P.S. Unfortunately, this meeting conflicts with Ultreya, but, hey, not everyone goes to Ultreya, right! 


Saturday, October 6, 2012

Memorial Walk

Today we gather at St. Thomas' for the annual barbecue and to raise money for the Memorial Walk. A few weeks ago, I took some photos of the Memorial Walk and thought I would begin sharing them on the blog. Enjoy!

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Tune in!

Some St. Thomas folks will be on local media talking about Saturday's barbecue over the next couple of days.

Karen Hayward will be on KTVE early Wednesday morning, and Bette Kauffman will be on KNOE early Thursday morning. To be perfectly honest, I don't remember what times we're to go live, only that we have to be at the stations by 6 a.m. So tune in early!

Bette Kauffman and Ed Ryland will be on KEDM's "Lagniappe" Thursday at 8:30 a.m. That's 90.3 FM on your radio dial.

Why not tune in so you can tell them what a great job they did!