IMPORTANT ANNOUNCEMENT FROM PRESIDENT MICAH T.J. JACKSON
I have, like all of you, been concerned about the rise of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) in the United States and around the world, and have been wondering what might be an appropriate response for Bexley Seabury to take. Of course, the safety and health of our various communities are paramount, but at the same time, we want to make sure that we are able to continue our mission to form lay and ordained leaders for the church and the world.
After considering the responses of other groups around the church and around the world, especially our closest partners, such as Chicago Theological Seminary (CTS) and the Diocese of Chicago, we are taking the following actions. Of course, as the progression of the disease continues, we will alter our response accordingly.
1. Our building will not be completely closed, yet CTS has encouraged all their staff and faculty to work from home as much as possible. We will do the same. Many of our staff and faculty work from a distance as a regular practice, so we do not expect that there will be any reduction in effectiveness of any support services, such as advising, registration, or financial aid. Please continue to reach out by email and telephone as you normally do, but have some extra patience as we get back to you.
2. All remaining sessions of “Anglican and Episcopal History” taught by Tom Ferguson, and Emlyn Ott’s “Spirituality and Change” will be held online. The next meeting of “Liturgy and Music,” taught by Milner Seifert and Victor Conrado, will also be held online. A decision about the final weekend of Liturgy and Music will be made later in response to conditions. Your professors will reach out to you soon to give you more details. If you have additional questions, please direct them to the relevant instructor.
3. Decisions about future gatherings, such as Commencement and the June residencies, will be made soon. We intend to have more information to share on or before Easter Monday (April 13).
As we all face this situation together I remind you that our tradition considers science and faith to be friends. It is possible to follow the biblical admonition to “be not afraid” and still follow prudent advice about hand washing and minimizing the spread of germs and viruses. After all, care for the vulnerable was a foundational concern for Jesus, and remains so for all Christians. I refer you again to the excellent resources being produced by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta and also the recommendations of our several bishops and other leaders regarding the practice of our private and corporate faith.
Finally, I encourage you all to pray. Pray for those who have died, those who are afflicted with this disease or whose other health conditions are being complicated by this virus, for those who are caring daily for the sick, for those whose work is dangerous or endangered, for all who are seeking a cure or a vaccine, for those who are worried for themselves and their loved ones, and as always, for the whole world which God loves.
I will be in touch again as the situation warrants.
Micah T.J. Jackson
President, Bexley Seabury
1407 E 60th St.
Chicago, IL 60637
773 380 6780 – Main #