Welcome to the Vergers Voice, the official news blog of the Vergers Guild of the Episcopal Church. Also known as the VGEC, we are located on the web at vergers.org and facebook.com/vergerguild the #1 online resources for vergers world-wide.

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Friday, February 6, 2015

Meet Us in St. Louis!

Meet Us in St. Louis for the 2015 VGEC Annual Conference! Contrary to rumor, the conference will not star Judy Garland, directed by Vincente Minnelli

By Ken Holloway, News Manager, VGEC, with Shug Goodlow, Chair of the 2015 Conference

Mark your calendars for October 1 through October 4, 2015 and make plans to assemble in St. Louis for the 27th Annual Conference of the Vergers Guild of the Episcopal Church hosted by The Very Rev. Michael D. Kinman, Dean of Christ Church Cathedral, Shug Goodlow, Head Verger, and the host committee from the Diocese of Missouri.

When you attend a VGEC Annual Conference, you will be able to learn more about the verger ministry, spend significant time in fellowship with vergers from around the US and the world, and enjoy many worship opportunities together. Sessions this year include "Verger 101: Exploring the Verger Ministry for the New Verger," "Verger 307: Advanced Discussion Topics for All Vergers," "Using Social Media to Spread the Word," "The Role of Cathedrals," "The Partnership Between Clergy and the Verger Ministry," and many more!

This year we are also introducing a new session called "Verging in Depth" designed to facilitate in-depth discussions on relevant topics for all vergers, new and experienced. This year the topic is "Holy Smoke!" focusing on the use of incense. We all have questions or opinions about why we use incense in the first place and when, where and how best to use it or not to use it.

Here are some of the highlights of the conference:
  • Keynote Address, "Who Do We Think We Are? Our Ancestry as Vergers” by James Armstrong, Head Verger, Carlisle Cathedral and National Chairman of the Church of England Guild of Vergers (CEGV)
  • Verger 101: Exploring the Verger Ministry for the New Verger
  • Verger 307: Advanced Topics for All Vergers
  • Verging in Depth: Holy Smoke! A detailed look into the use of incense
  • A discussion of The Role of Cathedrals led by the Very Rev. Mike Kinman, Dean
  • Early History of Black Anglicanism led by Sylvester Johnson, Ph.D.
  • Presentation on the history of Christ Church Cathedral with tour of the Cathedral and Reredos
  • Tour of the Missouri Botanical Gardens - 79 acres of lush gardens, landscape architecture, greenhouses and conservatories at the oldest Botanical Garden in the United States
  • Special events for spouses, partners and guests of conference attendees
  • Thursday evening Choral Evensong at Christ Church Cathedral
  • Morning Prayer each day
  • Vergers Recognition Dinner and Entertainment
  • 3-D Video Light Show
  • Verger Exhibit Hall including the Vergers Guild Shop and Hospitality Suite
  • VGEC Annual Business Meeting and board elections
  • Festive Choral Eucharist with the Procession of Vergers and Christ Church Cathedral Choir. The Rt. Rev. George Wayne Smith, 10th Bishop of the Diocese of Missouri, celebrating and preaching
This list will change over the next several months. If it is any indication, it shows that we are in for an incredible conference filled with a large number of learning options and experiences.

Christ Church Cathedral is listed on the National Register of Historic Places and is a National Historic Landmark. This wonderful, intimate example of a Gothic Revival church was designed by prominent New York architect Leopold Eidlitz and dedicated in 1867.

Just 7/10ths of a mile walking distance from the cathedral, our conference hotel is the St. Louis Union Station Hotel (a Doubletree Hilton Hotel). The hotel is on the actual site of the historic St. Louis Union Railway Station. All of the guest rooms have been renovated recently, so expect the "new" smell in your room at the conference rate of $119.00 plus 15.74% tax for one King Bed Deluxe. Other room accommodations are also available at special VGEC rates. Continental breakfast is included in the room rate. Reserve your room by clicking here now.

Be sure to review the full conference agenda on the VGEC conference page and watch for the essential VGEC travel "Survival Guide" soon to be completed and linked there. It is a good practice to visit the conference page often to catch any agenda or event location changes or updates which may be made as we near the conference date.

Registration is open now, so get moving toward St. Louis. What are you waiting for? Press the big red button!

Note from Ken: I'm planning to travel to St. Louis on AMTRAK from Austin. More on that in a later Vergers Voice post!

Register for the 2015 Annual Conference being held October 1 to October 4, 2015 in St. Louis, Missouri by clicking on the big red button below.

Abstract: 27th Annual VGEC Conference is to convene at Christ Church Cathedral in Saint Louis on October 1, 2015. Reserve your hotel rooms and register now. This week's post is an overview of the conference venues and agenda. St. Louis is a fantastic setting for our conference.

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