St. Barnabas Episcopal Church has a new ministry team. The Revd. Canon Daniel Weir is serving for six months as the priest, while The Rev. Dr. Betsy Hess will be deacon until her ordination to the Priesthood.
Canon Weir has served as a priest since 1973 in the Dioceses of Western Massachusetts and Western New York. In addition to being a parish priest, he has served on the diocesan staff in Western New York, was Director of the Eerie County Commission on Homelessness for six years, and taught social ethics at a Roman Catholic High School. He received his education at the University of Massachusetts in Amherst, and The Episcopal Divinity School in Cambridge, MA. When he retired, he and his wife moved to the Mount Washington Valley. In 2016 he was appointed Priest Associate of Christ Church, North Conway. He is enjoying getting to know the Berlin area, and helping the deacon with hands on learning towards her ordination as priest.
The Rev. Betsy Hess, Ph.D. has been a clinical psychologist in Berlin for the past 17 years. As she enters her new calling at St. Barnabas, she plans to continue her practice part time, doing psychological testing and evaluations, and seeing patients already in her practice. She will not be taking on new psychotherapy patients. For the past two years she has been studying for the priesthood in an innovative Priestly Formation program set up by the Episcopal Diocese of New Hampshire. Instead of attending seminary, participants have been trained by a team of four diocesan clergy. As well as receiving academic instruction, they have been trained in other aspects of parish ministry by their instructors, all of whom have served many years as parish priests as well as having strong academic credentials. Rev. Hess attended St. Barnabas for many years, and is enjoying coming back to her parish home.
The ministry team plans to build on the solid foundation of faith, liturgy, and outreach which has been a hallmark of St. Barnabas for many years. As the sign at the church says, their mission is to “Love God. Love Your Neighbor. Change the World.” People comment that it is an inspiring, friendly and welcoming place to worship.
Services are Sunday morning at 10:15, usually Eucharist, accompanied by internationally known organist Susan Ferre and psalm choir. A more informal program, OMG, takes place on the third Thursday of each month at 5:30, including a simple meal, family activity, and brief period of Bible story and prayer. This program is especially child friendly, but children are always welcome on Sunday as well. In addition, community suppers, a book group, and Lenten studies on Wednesday morning occur. Follow activities at the St. Barnabas web site and Facebook page, or call 752-3504 for more information.