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Episcopal Diocese of North Carolina facts for kids

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Diocese of North Carolina
Diocese of North Carolina seal.jpg
Country United States
Ecclesiastical province Province IV
Congregations 109
Members 46,259 (2019)
Denomination Episcopal Church
Established April 24, 1817
Current leadership
Bishop Samuel Sewall Rodman III
Suffragan Anne Hodges-Copple
Location of the Diocese of North Carolina
Location of the Diocese of North Carolina

The Episcopal Diocese of North Carolina is a diocese of the Episcopal Church within Province IV that encompasses central North Carolina. Founded in 1817, the modern boundaries of the diocese roughly corresponds to the portion of North Carolina between I-77 in the west and I-95 in the east, including the most populous area of the state. Raleigh, Charlotte, Winston-Salem, Greensboro, and Durham are the largest cities in the diocese. The diocese originally covered the entirety of the state, until the Diocese of East Carolina which stretches to the Atlantic was formed in 1883, and the Diocese of Western North Carolina which lies to the west extending into the Appalachian Mountains was formed in 1922 .

About the Diocese

The Diocese has no cathedral, but its offices are in downtown Raleigh. It meets in annual convention in November. Between conventions, the Diocese is administered by a Diocesan Council in conjunction with diocesan staff.

The episcopacy of the Diocese is currently vacant, as the eleventh Bishop of North Carolina (Michael Bruce Curry) was elected Presiding Bishop of the Episcopal Church. The Bishop Suffragan of the Diocese is Anne Hodges-Copple, who is currently serving as Bishop Pro Tempore. Other bishops who have served the Diocese since 1980 are Robert W. Estill (ninth Bishop of the Diocese), the late Robert C. Johnson (tenth Bishop of the Diocese), the late Frank Vest (Suffragan Bishop of the Diocese who subsequently became Bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Southern Virginia), the late Huntington Williams, Jr. (retired Suffragan Bishop), J. Gary Gloster (retired Suffragan Bishop), William Gregg (retired Assistant Bishop and previously the Bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Eastern Oregon), Alfred C. "Chip" Marble, Jr. (retired Assisting Bishop and previously the Bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Mississippi), and Peter James Lee (formerly Provisional Bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of East Carolina and Bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Virginia).

Congregations in the Diocese vary from conservative to liberal and from low church to high church, but the Diocese itself is generally considered moderate and is highly supportive of the Episcopal Church. Consisting of approximately 48,000 communicants, the Diocese is the tenth-largest in the nation and has shown a 3% compound annual growth rate over the last ten years. The density of Episcopalians varies across the Diocese but is highest in Wake County, the capital county.

Programs and Institutions

Principal programs of the Diocese are its campus ministry (North Carolina State University, St. Augustine's College, Duke University, the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, the University of North Carolina at Charlotte, and Davidson College); and social ministry, notably the Episcopal Farmworkers Ministry in Newton Grove, a joint venture with the Diocese of East Carolina. In a state with a growing Latino population, the Diocese supports a Chartered Committee on Hispanic Ministry. The committee provides liturgical and pastoral resources, supports congregations' service and outreach among Latinas and Latinos, and advocates for immigration reform and other laws to protect the rights of migrant workers.

The Diocese no longer operates a camp and conference center, having sold its facility near Browns Summit, North Carolina to the State of North Carolina for use as Haw River State Park. However, the Diocese maintains an active youth program. The territory of the Diocese includes independent schools with current or former diocesan affiliations including St. Mary's School, Trinity Episcopal School (Charlotte, NC), and Ravenscroft School.

Other major institutions affiliated with the Diocese are Penick Village in Southern Pines, a retirement community; and Thompson Child and Family Focus in Charlotte, a youth services ministry.

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