Proclaiming the Good News of God in Christ

Outreach and Mission

Schedule for DioNeb On the Road Tour 2015 Edition



Monday – Kimball 5:30 Holy Eucharist


Tuesday – Harrisburg 6:30 Holy Eucharist


Wednesday – Alliance 7 p.m. It will include confirmation and receiving new members


Thursday – Hyannis 5:30 p.m. Holy Eucharist


Friday – Rushville 5:30 p.m., Pot Luck at Holly, followed by informal discussion and Eucharist


Saturday – Gordon 9:30 to about 11:30 Western Deanery meeting.  Coffee & snacks available as people arrive.  Program will be Q & A to Diocesan Staff.


Noon to 5:00 Attend Willow Tree Festival (optional).  There will be many food vendors.  The festival has ongoing entertainment at three different stages and numerous craft booths.


5:30 p.m. Eucharist at St. Mark’s


Sunday – Scottsbluff 8:00AM & 10:00AM Holy Eucharist

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Mission Trip to Hato Mayer in the Dominican Republic



Join our team as we travel to Hato Mayer in the Dominican Republic to work on renovating a local house owned by the church (see pictures below). No construction skills are necessary, just a willingness to work. Stay in the comforts of a new hotel (picture on bottom right). Enjoy the beauty of this tropical country and work with local parishioners.

Click here for a three-page PDF with more details and registration information.

The Mission Trip sign-up deadline is August 1, 2015.

Dates: September 21 – 28, 2015

Cost: $1600 (approximately) Flying out of Omaha




Contact Karen Watson at St. Elizabeth’s Church, Holdrege, for more information.

(o) 308-995-4528
(c) 402-517-1326



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48th Triennial Meeting of the Episcopal Church Women

Nebraska Members of National Board: Rev. Pat Sheldon, Province 6 Representative; Patricia Wellnitz, Secretary; and Sandra Squires, UTO Board President.

Nebraska Members of National Board: Rev. Pat Sheldon, Province 6 Representative; Patricia Wellnitz, Secretary; and Sandra Squires, UTO Board President.

At the same time as General Convention, another group met in Salt Lake City to celebrate the 48th Triennial Meeting of the Episcopal Church Women.  Nebraska was well represented at this meeting by Lynn Fitzgibbon and Sharon Bartlett of Chadron, the Rev. Christine Grosh from Crete, Patricia Welnitz from Rushville, the Rev. Pat Sheldon from Elkhorn, and Kathy Graham from Alliance.  Also present was Sandra Squires from Elkhon who was the Province 6 UTO representative.  There were several special moments.

One of the first moments was the announcements of the United Thank Offering Grants for 2015.  One of the grants awarded was to the Friends of Tamar, a Ministry of Trinity Episcopal Cathedral in Omaha.  This $33,300.00 grant will create a part-time staff position to coordinate present administration of a new initiative designed to challenge violence against women and to pursue peach and reconciliation.

Closely related to this moment was the United Thank Offering (UTO) Ingathering during the Sunday Eucharist.  Over the recent 3 years (2012-2014) the Diocese of Nebraska contributed $18759.77.  Every penny of this and the other Diocesan Ingatherings went out in grants over the 3 year period.

Patricia Wellnitz

Patricia Wellnitz

Another highlight was the recognition of the 2015 Distinguished Women of the Episcopal Church Women.  This Triennial recognized Patricia Wellnitz from St. Mary’s Holly/Rushville as the Nebraska Distinguished Woman.  Patricia was later elected as the Secretary of the National Board of Episcopal Church Women for the next 3 years.

The National Board of Episcopal Church Women for 2015-2018 will include 3 Nebraskan women: Patricia Wellnitz, Secretary; Rev. Pat Sheldon, Province 6 Representative, and Sandra Squires, UTO Board President.

We also attended the worship service for Fr. Hiram Hisanori Kano.  Besides being special to the Diocese of Nebraska, the Women’s Ministry Board helped fund the publishing of his autobiography, Nikkei Farmer on the Nebraska Plains.


– Kathy Graham

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St. Matthew’s Alliance Team: Omaha Mission Trip

We're here

Ready to report for duty at the Open Door Mission! front l-r Cheryl Harris, Linda Huckfeldt, Anne Adam, Gina Briggs, back l-r Todd Harris, John Adam, Charles Plantz, Bill Cody

On April 30, 2015, eight people left for Omaha. Seven of us from St. Matthew’s: Bill Cody, Linda Huckfeldt, Charles Plantz, John and Anne Adam, Todd and Cheryl Harris and Gina Briggs from the Alliance Berean Church. We took helping hands, willing hearts, donation checks and the items that had been collected for the Hope Totes, to the Open Door Mission and to Table Grace Café. The group stayed at All Saints Retreat House. What a blessing that was to us. A beautiful room with a fully equipped kitchen upstairs and downstairs there were bedrooms and bathrooms with showers to take care of our needs.

The Open Door Mission, the first place we worked, offers hope and help to homeless men, women and children. Hope that can break the cycle of homelessness and poverty. Our work there involved anything from making 1,320 sandwiches for their street mission to food prep for breakfast, lunch and dinner, bagging hundreds of cookies, chips, treats, to sorting clothing and handing out boxes of food in their Timberlake Outreach building (similar to our Mission Store but 4 times larger). We learned that the average age of the homeless is 9 years old! We learned of the counseling program that each person who enters the program is required to participate in along with the rules they agree to follow. Each person is assigned a caseworker. The program offers counseling and teaches money management, job skills and life skills as well as parenting for those with children.

820 Meat and 500 PBJ's - that was just the first hour and a half of work at The Open Door Mission!  Bill, John Todd, ?, Gina, Anne ? (2 other volunteers) got the sticky job. - others did meat or bagged sweets and saltys for the lunches.

820 Meat and 500 PBJ’s – that was just the first hour and a half of work at The Open Door Mission! Bill, John Todd, Gina, Anne and two other volunteers got the sticky job.

The Table Grace Café is located in a tiny building in downtown Omaha and serves organic, gourmet pizzas, soups and salads made from scratch. They are one of fewer than 40 pay-what-you-can restaurants in the U.S. There are people from all walks of life that come together to enjoy good food. If you can’t pay with money, the owners ask for an hour of time. All are treated with dignity. Bill, Linda and Gina ground wheat berries for pizza flour, made homemade croutons and grated ginger and other things to season the food.

Each night after working and eating supper, we went back to the retreat center and talked about our day. Some of the things that were mentioned were the enormity of the Open Door facilities, the volume of people fed (500 each day – 3,500 a week), the tons of food donated, the never ending food prep, the amount of people who volunteer (40 + per day) and the cleanliness of everything with so many people coming and going. One of most touching things was the “overflow room” – a room with wall to wall blankets and sleeping bags. At the head of each “bed” was a tote with all the person’s belongings. There were about 100 sleeping on the floor, waiting for a space to be available to them in the program.

Linda with her croutons at Table Grace

Linda with her croutons at Table Grace

At Table Grace we were blessed to see their ministry at work. We saw people coming in and doing anything from sweeping the floor or painting murals, to playing the bongos or guitar and singing. They have regular days for Bible Study, days where they have ecumenical talks, they go out to families who need help and spread the Gospel wherever they go.

After talking about our day, we played a game called 5 Crowns. It’s a fun game and led to lots of laughter. Before retiring for the evening, we had a beautiful evening meditation that Charles put together for us from the New Zealand Prayer Book.

5 crowns: It wasn't all work  John, Linda, Cheryl, Todd, Gina and Anne in All Saint's Retreat Center.

5 crowns: It wasn’t all work John, Linda, Cheryl, Todd, Gina and Anne in All Saint’s Retreat Center.

I could go on and on about what we saw and did but this gives you a brief overview. All of us felt it was a wonderful few days and everyone wants to go back. We feel we came home with much more than we left there.
Without the support of our congregations, we wouldn’t have been able to do what we did. With our fundraising, we were able to give each place a check for $1,000 and we took six large boxes of items for the Hope Totes to the Open Door Mission.

Deacon Cheryl Harris

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Special Showing April 25th: Sober Indian | Dangerous Indian



Saturday, April 25, 10:00 am.

Church of the Holy Trinity

6001 A St. Lincoln, NE 68510 (402-488-7139)


Film producer John Maisch and co-star of the film, Frank LaMere, will be present to answer questions.

Sober Indian | Dangerous Indian is both a story of brave men and women on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation who have found empowerment through sobriety and those still struggling to overcome their alcohol addiction. Set in the weeks leading up to the Oglala Sioux Tribe’s historic vote to repeal its ban on alcohol on August 13, 2013, the documentary follows the journey of four alcoholics living on the streets of Whiteclay, Nebraska, less than 300 yards from their homes in Pine Ridge, South Dakota. A must-see film for anyone interested in stories about beating the odds in one of the poorest places in the country, Sober Indian | Dangerous Indian explores the harmful effects of alcohol abuse on tribal reservations including high rates of fetal alcohol syndrome, cirrhosis, teen suicide, and high-risk sexual behavior.

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Dean Fricke Memorial Episcopal Food Pantry 2014 Report

George Rood, board member from All Saints, serving food at the DEO luncheon at Trinity Cathedral.

George Rood, board member from All Saints, serving food at the DEO luncheon at Trinity Cathedral.

The mission of the Dean Fricke Memorial Episcopal Food Pantry is to serve others in the name of the Lord by providing food to families The Fricke Food Pantry is a unique organization that brings together Episcopalians from all over Omaha.

The pantry provides 100 bags of groceries per week for Youth Emergency Services (YES), an Omaha-based agency that serves homeless and at-risk youth in crisis, and we provides $1,200 per month to help stock the pantry at Project Hope, a Lutheran agency that provides food and clothing assistance to families in need. It also provides larger Parish Pantries with bags that hold enough food for an entire family, and traveler’s lunch sacks which are distributed by Holy Family Catholic Church at 17th and Izard.

Click here for the full Dean Fricke Memorial Episcopal Food Panty 2014 Report.

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Changes and Extended Deadline for Young Adult UTO Grants




The United Thank Offering (UTO) is celebrating the 125th anniversary of its ministry as a part of The Episcopal Church.

This year, the UTO Board has created a special $1,250 grant for young adults as part of this celebration. UTO is asking each diocesan bishop to select one application for submission per diocese. Of those submitted, a total of nine (9) grants will be awarded. Each awardee will receive $1,250 to carry out the chosen ministry.

The purpose of this grant is to provide seed (start-up) money for a new project that focuses on any of the Five Marks of Mission: To tell the story of these grants, a video of highlights will be shown at the 2015 General Convention. The UTO Board will pay for travel and expenses for the top three ranked grants awardees to tell about their grants at the UTO Dinner.


Due to the special nature of this award, the board has created an application form and process for young adults (ages 21-30). Information on submitting a grant will be posted to the UTO website (see link below).

  • By March 17, 2015, submit your completed application to your diocesan bishop, carefully answering each
    question on the application form. NOTE: No video is required at this time.
  • The bishop will select one application per diocese. The diocesan office will submit its choice by March 27,
    2015, 5 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time, to the UTO Office. The bishop’s office will be provided a link for
  • A bishop’s signature is required on the application. Applications without a bishop’s signature will not be
    accepted. UTO will notify the nine grant award winners in May 2015.
  • During the grant review process between submission and announcement, the grants will be ranked and the top
    three grant awardees will travel to Salt Lake City in late June to the UTO Dinner to present their projects at
    UTO Board’s expense.

Questions? Please contact the Rev. Heather Melton, UTO Coordinator, at


Here are links to the application documents

Young Adult Grant Application

Bishop’s Approval Form

This article in Spanish

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All Call Omaha Kiva Update: Next Event February 8th


Five of the seven All Call Omaha Kiva loans have now been paid back in full! Currently, Lalitibe in San Diego, California, Tuyen in Vietnam, and the Mariposas 1 Group in Santiago, DR are repaying their loans on schedule.

Click here for a pdf with details.

With the repayments we have received, there is over $600 in the All Call Kiva account to be re-loaned, and we’ll be having a Kiva party to do that at 5 PM on Sunday, February 8th at Church of the Resurrection.  Snacks will be provided, and we’ll also hear a presentation from Pamela Berry on the North Omaha Summer Arts Crawl, and close with a brief prayer service.

Berry created the North Omaha Summer Arts organization(NOSA) in 2011 to serve the area north of Ames Ave. along the 30th Street corridor. The free Arts Crawl public festival is held every summer and it includes visual and mixed-media artists, quilting classes, and musicians. Artists are stationed with their works at Metro College and various churches along North 30th Street, and attendees have a chance to talk with the artists about their work as they snack their way through the venues.

Berry sees NOSA as a much needed asset for an underserved community challenged by poverty, crime, scarce amenities and a perception problem. “In the area of North Omaha where we live we could find no art,” she says. “We knew it was there, we just had to uncover it. We knew art would bring hope and peace and most of all community to our neighborhood. We’ve seen it grow, we’ve noticed the interest and the benefits…and we want it to continue to flourish.”

Nebraska Arts Council Heritage Arts Manager Deborah Bunting says NOSA is part of the new energy and sense of community being built in North Omaha.

Below are some photos from the 2014 arts crawl.

butterfly abstract
crucifix cut-floral
daniel pam
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Let’s Build a Home Together!!!

Help Kelly build a house in the DR!

Help Kelly build a house in the DR!

My name is Kelly Dornan. I am a member at Saint Andrews Episcopal Church and a senior at Westside High school. I would love to share with you my mission experience in the barrio of El Pedregal, Dominican Republic.

Last summer I participated in a Nebraska Diocesan Youth Mission with youth from four parishes. Our mission was to build a home for a church family there, and a playground at the school. Together we worked with the community to complete our mission calling. In one week, I formed life long friendships not only with my fellow missioners, but also with this wonderful community.

This experience was very important to me because through it I became closer to my faith. I thought I went to the Dominican Republic to help change the lives of others, and they changed my life. I am blessed to say, I am who I am today because of my mission experience in the DR.

I am writing to you because I am hosting a dinner and silent auction to raise funds to support the 2015 building of a home and the renovation of a building into a children’s shelter. Funds raised will be used to purchase necessary project materials. Youth from several Diocesan churches will again work with the community to complete these important projects.

I invite you to attend the dinner to support our projects and learn more about my mission experience as well as the experience of the youth who participated last year.

When: Sunday January 25, 2015
Where: Saint Andrews Episcopal Church 925 South 84th St. Omaha, NE 68114
What: Catered Latin Dinner and Silent Auction
Time: 5:30 P.M.
Price: $25 Per Person/$30 at the door

Babysitting provided in the nursery.

Please make checks payable to Saint Andrews Episcopal Church with “DR Youth Mission” in the memo line. Please send checks to St. Andrews Episcopal Church. No tickets will be issued. You will check in at the door.

If you are unable to attend but wish to support the 2015 Nebraska Youth DR Mission, checks may be sent to St. Andrews Episcopal Church.

Please feel free to contact me at any time with questions or suggestions. You can reach me at my cell phone: (402) 536-0179, or my email:

I am excited about this event and hope you will become a part of our team so that we may build this home together.

Thank you for your consideration and support,

Kelly Dornan


Note from Don Peeler:

Kelly Dornan is a remarkable young lady who went with us last year on the Diocesan Youth DR Mission. She poured the last bucket of cement to complete the floor in the house we built for Jacqueline’s family. Kelly told us then that we had more homes to build, and last Fall committed herself to raising the funds necessary to build a home for another church family in el Pedregal.


Kelly is hosting a dinner and silent auction to raise funds to purchase the materials to build the home and to renovate a building into a children’s shelter. The youth who participated last year, and those going this year are working with her, so while the dinner is at St. Andrews, this is truly a Diocesan Event.

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2015 Youth Mission to the Dominican Republic

The 2015 Youth Mission to the Dominican Republic is June 22-29; the 2015 team is forming now!

The Nebraska Youth Mission Team will once again partner with Christ Church (Valdosta GA) to work on two construction projects in the rural, mountain community of El Pedregal. As in 2014, we will stay at the Diocesan Camp located there, and will work both on the grounds of the camp, and in the adjoining community.

A very special third project will be completed by the NE Youth Mission Team. This project will create a dedicated media projection room on the grounds of the Episcopal Camp and Conference Center. This room will provide valuable programs to the community and to its visitors, including the much appreciated Movie Ministry that was initiated by the NE Youth Mission Team in 2014.

The building at the Diocesan Camp which will house the media projection room

The media room will be located on the second floor of this building which serves as a large dormitory. This building also houses a conference facility at the Diocesan Camp in El Pedregal. During the past year, several Diocesan groups and mission teams have utilized this facility. A dedicated media room offering audio and visual services will enhance learning and fellowship opportunities to all visiting this very special place. A projector and ten family friendly movies have already been delivered to the camp so that the Movie Ministry, and other programs, might continue in the interim.Our first construction project will involve the renovation of an existing building to serve as a day care center that will be administered by the staff of the local Episcopal K-8 School, Monte de la Transfiguracion. This building is adjacent to the playground which the NE and GA teams built together on the school grounds in 2014. As this building has been flooded in the past, both landscaping and structural improvements will be made. The building to be renovated is pictured here:

The building to be renovated

The building to be renovated




Our second construction project will be to replace a wooden house in the community with a concrete-block house for Altagracia, her two children, and her husband who currently live in the home shown here.


Exterior of Altagracia’s home


The photo on the right shows the interior of Altagracia’s home. Altagracia is pregnant with her third child. She is employed as a cook and domestic at the camp. In June 2015, we will help Altagracia welcome her new child into a new cement block home. In 2014, we helped build a home for Jacqueline, who is caring for nine people in her home, including her deceased sister’s children and her aging mother. The home we build for Altagracia will be very similar to the one we build for Jacqueline, except it must be smaller because of the the size of their building lot. Like Jacqueline, Altagracia’s family is active in the local church community. She works very hard to provide the best she can for her family, but mosquito-safe housing has proven unattainable for them.


Interior of Altagracia’s home




Here is the home we helped build in 2014.


Home we helped build in 2014




The 2015 Mission Team will leave early morning from Omaha NE on June 22, 2015. We will return to Omaha late evening on June 29, 2015. We will arrive in Santo Domingo shortly after noon on June 22nd, and will travel by private coach two hours north into the heart of the Dominican Republic. We will be warmly welcomed to camp by Padre Alvaro Yepes and his wife Angela. We will stay in dormitory-style housing, and our meals will be prepared by camp staff. We will work on our projects simultaneously, so work teams will be utilized with everyone having the opportunity to work with each other and the community.

Afternoon activities, such as trips to the river and waterfalls, are planned with the community. We will continue our Movie Ministry Nights with the children (ages 2 to 92) of the community. On Saturday night we will celebrate the success of our mission with a Community Fiesta like no other. Following worship on Sunday morning, we will return to Santo Domingo for an afternoon walking tour of the historic Colonial Zone. We will spend our last night in a hotel in the Colonial Zone. The following morning, we will travel to the Santo Domingo airport, and begin our journey home.

Eligible youth must be at least 16 years old by June 2015, or just graduated high school in May 2015. Preference will be given to youth attending an Episcopal parish in Nebraska. We have reserved 16 airline tickets, and we expect the group will fill fast.

The total cost, including air and ground transportation, housing, meals, insurance and project fees is estimated to be $1675. A non-refundable $100 deposit is necessary at this time to reserve your seat on the plane. The remaining costs will be determined 60 days before departure, and all fees must be paid 30 days prior to departure. Fundraising will be left to the youth, family and sponsoring parish.

Questions???   Please, call Don and Melissa Peeler at 402-572-7556, or email them at

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