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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Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Meet the 2016 VGEC Board Nominees

A few past VGEC Boards - What will the future hold?

By Ken Holloway, VGEC News Manager, with Duke DuTeil, VGEC Treasurer and Nomination Committee member

We will be electing three board members at our Annual Conference in Spokane during the business meeting, on Saturday morning, September 24th.The leadership of the guild is defined in the VGEC Bylaws and is based on the vestry model in which each year three of the nine board members are elected to serve a three-year term. When the new board is established at the annual conference, it immediately elects its officers: a president, vice-president, secretary, and treasurer. Those officers serve a one-year term and may be re-elected at the next conference or the board may choose to elect different officers.

The three board members who have expiring terms are Rich Lammlin, Barry Norris, and Richard Parker. All three of these members are eligible to stand for another term on the board. Barry Norris and Richard Parker have agreed to stand for election to another three year term. Rich Lammlin has informed the Nomination Committee that he would not be able to serve on the board because of increased responsibilities in his parish and diocese.

Your Nominations Committee submits the following four candidates for your consideration. Our sincere thanks to all these VGEC members willing to stand for election to leadership positions.

In alphabetical order, here are their statements:


Scott G.N. Crowell, St Francis Episcopal Church, Palos Verdes Estates, California

Scott was born and raised United Methodist in Houston and loved going to church. In 1986 he had a British roommate who was away that Christmas, so he decided to have a British Christmas Eve and went to St. Francis Episcopal Houston for Christmas Eve Mass and was hooked on the liturgy and converted to the Episcopal Church. The next year, he moved across town and moved his letter to Palmer Memorial Episcopal Church, where the 1998 Conference was held. He met Rob Rhynerson there and became very inspired of the Verger program, yet did not join the ranks of Vergers as they had enough. Scott moved to Las Vegas for work in 1994 where he met Sean Saunders his life partner/husband and have been together since 21 Feb 1995. Scott was appointed Verger in 2000 at Christ Church Episcopal to assist the other two Vergers. During his training he was called to St. Timothy’s Episcopal Church, Henderson, NV by his friend stating they needed a Verger program started there. In 2002, Scott made the change and worked for the next several years instilling the Verger Program in Henderson including taking the training course in 2004. While there, the liturgist had to take a medical leave for several months, and Scott filled his shoes working with the Rector on planning and orchestrating the liturgies. He was installed as Verger by +The Right Reverend Katharine Jefferts-Schori in 2004 when she was Bishop of the Diocese of Nevada. Scott served under her as Diocesan Verger assisting at Diocesan events. Later Scott was asked to serve as one of the many Vergers at Bishop Jefferts-Schori’s Installation at Washington National Cathedral. Scott later became Head Verger with the addition of one additional Verger, trained under his guidance. In 2007 Sean was transferred to Los Angeles and Scott moved his letter to St. Thomas the Apostle Anglican Episcopal Church, Hollywood. Scott served as usher, lector, and acolyte including the Saturday evening Latin Vigil Mass. St. Thomas is very high church, but Scott did not serve as Verger there as they have a ceremonial Verger only used on Christmas, Easter and high feast days and only to process the clergy in and out. They have a Master of Ceremony and Sub Deacon that do the normal Verger duties every Mass. St. Thomas is 27.5 miles away from where Scott and Sean reside. In 2011, with a major road works project on one of the freeways and a marathon taking place the same Sunday, it took Scott 2.5 hours to get home and Scott decided to find a new parish closer in. Scott moved his letter to St. Francis Episcopal Church where he instantly became Verger there, one of 11 vergers, although presently only 2 are members of the guild. Through time, he has served on the Altar Guild, the Worship Team, assisted with liturgies, and served as the Worship Shepherd. The rector often goes to Scott as the go-to person for liturgy suggestions and questions. In 2016, Scott was invited to serve as Verger for a week at Carlisle Cathedral to learn the ropes of being an English cathedral verger. Ever since Scott has joined the guild, he has attended 4 conferences: Dallas 2004, Sewanee 2005, Nashville 2013, St. Louis 2015, and is attending Spokane 2016 and planning on attending Atlanta 2017. Scott looks very forward to working with the board of directors and officers of the VGEC and thanks those who nominated him as well as those who elected him.

Darin Herndon, VGEC Technology Manager, St Augustine Episcopal Church, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

Darin Herndon was raised in the Southern Baptist Church but found his love for liturgy and liturgical worship, along with his the love of his life (his wife Katherine), in the Episcopal Church. From usher to lector to Lay Eucharistic Minister to acolyte master to verger, his focus of service in the Episcopal Church has always centered on our communal worship. He is currently Head Verger for the former mission now parish of St. Augustine of Canterbury, a growing community of faith in Oklahoma City. He has been a member of the VGEC for six and a half years, has served as Technology Manager for the guild for three years, and joined the VGEC pilgrimage in the UK in the summer of 2014.

Professionally, Darin is the Oklahoma area Consulting Engineer for a firm providing professional IT services and equipment which he joined last December. Prior to that he served in a variety of senior technical, supervisory, and internal consulting positions for over 22 years at both a fortune 500 firm and a privately held architectural engineering firm. Much of Darin’s experience has centered on creating or improving technology and processes to achieve business goals and to improve competitive advantages.

An Eagle Scout, Darin has previously served multiple years on local council or regional executive boards of the Boy Scouts of America. A graduate of the University of Tulsa, majoring in management and minoring in finance, Darin is currently approaching 20 years of serving on the IT program’s curriculum advisory committee at a branch of the Oklahoma State University system. Academically a business and finance focused individual, he has aptitudes for technology and strategic planning and management that have guided his career. Darin has served as Technology Manager of the VGEC leading the monthly maintenance of the technology infrastructure of the organization for the past three years. Darin is honored to be nominated and considered for a position on the VGEC Board. If elected, he will bring his prior board level and professional experience to contribute with the other board members in the guild’s planning, direction, governance, growth, financial and strategic management, and (of course) technology; all with the perspective of supporting the individual vergers of our Church.

Barry S Norris, VGEC Guild Shop Committee Chair, 2015 General Convention VGEC Booth Co-Chair, Church of the Holy Spirit, Harleysville, Pennsylvania

Head Verger, Church of the Holy Spirit, Harleysville, PA
Cradle Episcopalian
Became Verger in 2005
Joined Guild 2005. Earned Fellowship 2006.
Attended my first conference at Sewanee in 2005 and have attended every conference since
Elected to the Boar d in 2013
Assumed responsibility for Guild Shop within my first year on the Board
Co-chair of the VGEC booth at General Convention in Salt Lake City in 2015

Warden of Church of the Holy Spirit Vestry for 7 years
Diocesan Council 5 years, Finance/Budget Committee 7 years
Chaperone for J2A Youth Groups for three pilgrimages to the UK
Responsible for training and scheduling for all lay ministries

In summary, I take care of the logistics so our priest can take care of the people. I would be honored to serve the VGEC membership for another three years.

Richard A. Parker, VGEC Board Secretary, VGEC Chapter Development Committee member, Founding member, Diocese of North Carolina Chapter of the VGEC, Church of the Holy Comforter, Burlington, North Carolina

I am the Head Verger at my Parish Church in Burlington, North Carolina. I joined the Vergers Guild in 2011 and was awarded my Training Certificate at the Annual Conference in 2012. I currently serve as the Secretary to the Guild.

My work in my local church includes all of the normal duties of the verger which I have enjoyed over the past five years. My work on the VGEC Board of Directors has included two years on the Chapter Development Committee and now one year as your Secretary. I write the minutes for all of the Board meetings as well as the agendas for the upcoming meetings. I also enjoy attending the Mid-Year Meetings at the host church for the annual conference.

If elected for another 3 year term, I would gladly continue to serve as the Secretary for the Guild. Please accept my nomination for a seat on the Board of Directors.



Click the big red button to register for the 2016 Annual Conference opening on September 22nd and running through noon on the 25th, in Spokane, Washington. The conference is the most popular and anticipated VGEC activity every year - please join us!





Abstract: Every year the VGEC elects three of the nine board members to serve, using the vestry model of rotating three-year terms. This is your opportunity to get to know the candidates for the VGEC Board election, coming up on Saturday morning, September 24th in Spokane, Washington.

Saturday, August 6, 2016

Verger 307 - Keep Calm and Ask a Verger

At the VGEC Annual Conference in St. Louis in October 2015, Bob Mikrut and Cindy Ware leading the "Verger 307" Workshop

By Bob Mikrut, Head Verger at Church of the Redeemer, Bryn Mawr, PA

When questions come up just before the service or during planning meetings, we always encourage our congregations, worship teams, acolytes, altar guild, musicians and (sometimes) clergy to, "Ask a Verger!" But when we are stumped or encounter a situation new to us, who do we vergers consult? Answer: "Ask another verger!"

I reside in Philadelphia where I am Head Verger at Church of the Redeemer, Bryn Mawr, in the western suburbs. I have co-conducted this workshop since the 2013 Conference in Nashville. Co-presenters with me have included past VGEC past-president and retired Head Verger from Trinity Wall Street, David Jette, and Head Verger Cindy Ware, from Christ Church Cathedral, Lexington, KY. Joining me this year to co-present is David Barr, Dean's Verger at St. John’s Episcopal Cathedral in Denver, CO.

We expect questions will abound in the Verger 307 workshop, one of two very informative workshops scheduled for this year’s VGEC 28th Annual Conference in Spokane, Washington, September 22nd through 25th. This conference session features the chance for vergers to talk to other vergers about situations that occur during liturgy, between service participants, or even staff and or clergy. V-307 is for the “well-seasoned” verger, someone who has experience under his or her belt (or chemiere), in any size parish. As a bonus, we have extended the length of the session this year to 90 minutes because it seems we never have enough time to talk!

At past conferences, there was always Verger 101 which is designed to provide a time for those new to the verger ministry to ask questions and talk about what we do as vergers, but many of us felt that we wanted to ask the more experienced vergers about some of the finer points of our ministry. So, at our 25th Anniversary Conference at Christ Church Cathedral in Nashville, we decided to take action to address the requests for conversation among experienced vergers. Thus, Verger 307 was born.

This workshop consists of question and answer discussions, using pertinent questions that we have heard in previous sessions which work well for many problems or situations that occur for vergers. These questions will be available to session attendees very soon so that you can be ready to discuss them. We will also be asking for new questions and circumstances that occurred in your parishes when you didn’t quite know “what to do” or asked, “did I do the right thing?” We will soon send out a survey to all participants of 307 to collect those questions for consideration to be part of the session. Who knows, your question might take precedence over one from past sessions!

If you have not registered for Spokane, there is still time to register, there are still rooms available, and it is never too late to sign up to attend the Verger 307 workshop! Conference Registration is available through the VGEC Guild Shop using the big red button below. If you are registered for Verger 307, we look forward to seeing you in about six weeks.



Click the big red button to register for the 2016 Annual Conference opening on September 22nd and running through noon on the 25th, in Spokane, Washington. The conference is the most popular and anticipated VGEC activity every year - please join us!




Abstract: Even as experienced vergers, we often have questions about the verger ministry in general. Three years ago, in Nashville, we added a discussion and conversation session for vergers who had been in practice for three or more years. Please send us all of the topics you want to hear discussed during the Verger 307 Training Seminar at this year's VGEC Conference in Spokane, September 22-25.