Episcopal Diocese of Southeast FloridaMural

Guidelines For Bishop's Visit

The Guidelines For A Bishop's Visit

Bishop's visit confirmation

These guidelines for Episcopal visitations have been developed by the bishop and the diocesan Commission on Liturgy and Music. They apply whether the visit will be by the diocesan bishop or one of the retired bishops who assist with the confirmation schedule. If there are other areas of concern that you would like us to consider, please let us know so that we might include them in our ongoing discussions with the bishop regarding liturgical guidelines for our Diocese.

Please post an announcement poster, which will be sent prior to the confirmation, in a prominent place to let people know the bishop is coming. Let's make this a joyous celebration for everyone to enjoy.

Please notify Jackie Fernandez in Bishop Frade's office at least two to three weeks in advance of the number of confirmation and reception certificates needed, the time of the service(s), and any other information the bishop needs to know.

Also at that time, send an order of service and other pertinent information to the bishop. If there is a particular theme you would like the bishop to address during his visit, either in the sermon or at some other time, please let him know so that he has adequate time to prepare.

The bishop will be using the oil stock for confirmation that was received at the Chrism Eucharist in Holy Week. If this is not available, please allow sufficient time to order—and receive—it from Trinity Cathedral.

If possible, the bishop would like to meet informally with the vestry, the confirmands and other parish leaders at a mutually agreeable time, be it after the reception following the service, or at some time prior to the visitation. He would like this to be an informal gathering, the purpose of which is to share what is in our hearts and minds.

The bishop would also like a junior warden's tour in order to be brought up to date on the date of the parish properties. Parish registers should be available to be viewed also at that time.

The Propers to be used shall be those for that particular day, unless otherwise agreed upon by the rector and bishop. The liturgical color is ordinarily white, though other colors may be used as is appropriate for special occasions.

It is the bishop's desire to celebrate confirmation using the order of service beginning on page 413 of The Book of Common Prayer. If there is to be a baptism, the service begins on page 299. Should you desire it, a Rite I adaptation of the Confirmation service or any other service by the ordinary is permitted, but in either case, the order of service shall be in accordance with The Book of Common Prayer. Please enclose information regarding the Bishop's Discretionary Fund in the bulletin for the Sunday of the bishop's visit.

Be sure there is a designated parking space near the church and a person waiting to assist the bishop with his vestments.

The bishop would like to meet, if possible, with the confirmation class one half hour before the service.

The bishop will wear the Eucharistic vestments as provided by the parish and will wear his own vestments for the Liturgy of the Word.

The bishop would be available to be present at all Sunday services. The bishop would also be delighted to participate in your Christian Education program during his visitation.

If there are gifts to be signed, please have them ready in the sacristy before the service. If they are to be blessed, please place them on the altar before the service begins. They will be blessed after the post communion prayer and picked up after the service.

If Bishop Frade's wife, Diana, or the wife of any visiting bishop, is present, please have someone available to sit with her and accompany her during their visit.

If possible, the bishop desires to be seated from the beginning of the service in front of the altar with two attendants, clergy or lay. They are to assist him in changing vestments, holding the prayer book, handling the oil stock, etc. The chairs are then removed during the Peace in preparation for Holy Communion.

Please have a name tag or card for each confirmand. Sometimes it is hard to hear whispered instructions.

The bishop suggests that the confirmation class be part of the incoming and outgoing processions of the service. If a confirmation class photo is desired, it shall be taken immediately after the Bishop greets the people at the door. The rector or someone designated by him/her should bless the food at the reception if the bishop is delayed for one reason or another.

The bishop requests that there be no head table at the reception. He would like to be free to circulate and meet everyone there rather than be confined to just one table.

It is customary to donate the open plate offering to the Bishop's Discretionary Fund whenever the bishop officiates, celebrates, preaches or pontificates. The check should be payable as follows:

Bishop ____________________ Discretionary Fund

and mailed to:
The Diocese of Southeast Florida
525 NE 15th Street
Miami, FL 33132

Please note on the check which bishop was present and the date of the visit.

You will receive a form that will allow you to list those who will be confirmed at the service. Please complete this form and return it to the diocesan office with the open plate offering check after the bishop's visit.