Mary Lee Talbot | Staff Writer
The Rt. Rev. V. Gene Robinson will be the chaplain for Week Two at Chautauqua. He will preach today through Friday at the 9:15 a.m. worship service in the Amphitheater.
Today, his theme is “God Bless America: Be Careful What You Pray for!”; Tuesday is “Religion and Politics: A Controversial Brew”; Wednesday is “Give me your tired, your poor: ‘Who is My Neighbor?’”; Thursday is “From ‘More’ to ‘Enough’: Moral Economics in the Me-First World”; Friday is “Putting the ‘Common’ Back into the “Common Good”: Critiquing the American Dream.”
Robinson, Ninth Bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of New Hampshire since 2003, served previously as Canon to the Ordinary (Assistant to the Bishop) for almost 18 years.
A graduate of the University of the South, Sewanee, Tenn., he holds a bachelor’s degree in American studies/history and a master’s degree from the General Theological Seminary in New York.
He has also served as Curate at Christ Church, Ridgewood, N.J. From 1978 to 1985, he was Youth Ministries Coordinator for the seven dioceses of New England, serving two years on the National Youth Ministries Development Team, where he helped originate the national Episcopal Youth Event.
From 1983 until his election as bishop, Robinson also served as Executive Secretary of Province I, coordinating all cooperative programs between the seven dioceses of New England.
Clergy wellness has long been a focus of Robinson’s ministry, and in the nineties he developed the Being Well in Christ conference model for The Cornerstone Project, and led clergy conferences in more than 20 dioceses in the U.S. and Canada.
He initiated A Fresh Start, a two-year mentoring program for all clergy in new positions in New Hampshire, and co-authored the Fresh Start curriculum, now in use in almost half of the dioceses of the Episcopal Church. Much of his ministry has focused on helping congregations and clergy, especially in times of conflict, utilizing his skills in congregational dynamics, conflict resolution and mediation.
Co-author of three AIDS education curricula for youth and adults, Robinson has done AIDS work in the United States and in Africa (Uganda and South Africa), and has been an advocate for anti-racism training in the diocese and wider Church. He holds two honorary doctorates and has received numerous awards from national civil rights organizations.
Robinson’s story is featured in the 2007 feature-length documentary, “For the Bible Tells Me So.” The documentary was directed and co-written by Daniel Karslake, a lifelong Chautauquan and son of Dick and Marianne Karslake.
Robinson enjoys entertaining and cooking, gardening, music and theater. He is the father of two grown daughters and the proud grandfather of two granddaughters. He lives with his partner, Mark Andrew, who is employed by the State of New Hampshire’s Department of Safety.