The Union of Black Episcopalians is set to honor the Very Rev. Michael Battle, Ph. D., the Rev. Walter B.A. Brownridge, the Rev. Dr. Canon Michele V. Hagans and Ms. Deborah J. Stokes at its 49th annual business meeting and conference in Philadelphia/Cherry Hill, NJ, July 23 – July 26.
Stokes has been chosen to receive the Faith in Action Award, which recognizes extraordinary and long term service as a leader in many areas of the Episcopal Church. The award is inspired by the scripture, “Your work produced by faith, your labor prompted by love, and your endurance inspired by hope in our Lord Jesus Christ”.
In its announcement of the honors, UBE profiled Stokes as a faithful parishioner of St. Philip’s, Columbus, and cited her extensive work in the Diocese of Southern Ohio and her community. The text of the profile follows:
Deborah J. Stokes has been a member of St. Philip Episcopal Church, Diocese of Southern Ohio, since 1975. She has moved from group involvement in the choir and altar guild to more leadership positions as Lay Eucharistic Minister and Visitor, vestry member and Junior Warden. Her involvement in the Diocese evolved as well from member of Diocesan Council and Commission on Ministry to leadership positions as chair of the Racism Training Task Force, co-trainer for Lay Worship Leaders to Deputy to General Convention, President of Standing Committee and Lay Licensed Preacher and Lay Worship Leader. She served on numerous committees and commissions of The Episcopal Church including Disciplinary Board of Bishops and Executive Council. For 31 years, her vocation was public health social work administrator in the Department of Health, Division of Family and Community Health Services. As a retiree, she has continued her public service through participating on community boards, faith organizations and community organizations.
You can see more about this announcement and the other honorees at the press release on the UBE website: http://www.ube.org/dfc/newsdetail_2/3186256.