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A Visit From Bishop Clark

Greetings, saints of Trinity -

This weekend we welcome Bishop Clark, who will join us for a blessing of the playground at 9:30AM and one combined service at 10AM.  It’s sure to be an especially joyful Sunday.  But you may be wondering, why do we have a Bishop, and what does he do?

The word Bishop translates the Greek word episkopos, often translated “overseer” in Paul’s pastoral letters (see 1 Timothy 3, Titus 1).  When the church was beginning in the 1st century, the Bishop was simply the senior pastor of the local church.  But as the church grew, the Bishop became the leader not only of one congregation but of the other congregations in his city and region.  Because the Bishop could not be physically present in every congregation, he would appoint Priests (which translates the Greek word presbyteros) to serve in his place.

Bishop Clark has his Cathedral in The Woodlands, TX, just north of Houston.  He oversees seventeen parishes, in the region from San Antonio to the Mexican border, from Austin to Houston, and the state of Louisiana.  Our Diocese is named after this region of The Western Gulf Coast.  He visits each parish at least once per year to advance discipleship and perform confirmations, and this year we have the pleasure of welcoming him a second time.

When you see Bishop Clark on Sunday, you will see him wearing distinctive vestments, and carrying a shepherd’s crook, called a crozier.  The crozier both symbolizes his leadership of us, the sheep, and points to Christ, the true “Shepherd and Bishop of our souls” (1 Peter 2:25).  The crozier also reminds us all that leadership is most powerfully exercised through sacrifice.  Jesus was the “good shepherd” because he “laid down his life for the sheep” (John 10:11).

In Christ -