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[The Episcopal News] Bishop John Harvey Taylor has selected the theme “Back to the Holy City: The Hope of Christ in Our Time” for Diocesan Convention’s 2022 annual meeting and program year, and announced that Jerusalem’s Anglican Archbishop Hosam Naoum will address Convention in Riverside Nov. 12.

Taylor also said that Episcopal Church Presiding Bishop Michael Curry will visit the diocese during the 2023 Martin Luther King Jr. weekend.

The convention theme – which seeks to inspire hope and healing after the ravages of a global pandemic, national racial reckoning, divisive partisanship, and war in Ukraine – will provide context for additional events during diocese’s program year, Taylor said.

“While mission and ministry in our diocese barely skipped a beat during the pandemic, we also spent a lot of emotional energy just getting through our days, individually and institutionally,” said Taylor. “This is the year for fixing our eyes once again on God’s vision of a holy city of love and justice for all God’s people — taking what we’ve learned about what church and society are doing well, and what they’re not doing well, and rededicating ourselves to making it better. In November and January, these two archbishops, both eloquent, prophetic leaders in global 21st century Christianity, are going to take us up on the mountain and show us the promised land.”

The longstanding companion relationship shared by the dioceses of Jerusalem and Los Angeles will be in focus during the visit of Naoum, who took office in 2021 after serving as dean of St. George’s College, Jerusalem, and as a priest in Nablus and Zababdeh. These congregations have been regularly visited by members of the Diocese of Los Angeles, and current companion-diocese conversations include resuming pilgrimages to and from Jerusalem as pandemic-related travel restrictions continue to ease.

Curry, who has served since 2015 as The Episcopal Church’s 27th presiding bishop and provided significant pastoral leadership during the pandemic and concurrent civil unrest, will visit the Diocese of Los Angeles Jan. 12 – 15 and preach during a Sunday afternoon diocese-wide commemoration of the birthday of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. That Jan. 15 observance will be planned by the diocesan MLK host committee, with time, venue, and additional events of the weekend to be announced in the future.

Throughout his ministry and his writings focused on “The Way of Love,” Curry continues to underscore the concept of “beloved community” frequently invoked by King to call for a society based upon justice with opportunities and resources available to all.

Further information about Diocesan Convention and the visits of Naoum and Curry will be posted online as details become available.