The Episcopal Diocese of New Jersey,
St. Bernard’s is one of the northernmost congregations in the Diocese of New Jersey, whose diocesan office is located in Trenton, along with Trinity Cathedral. This diocese covers the lower two thirds of New Jersey, sharing the state with the Diocese of Newark. The diocese has been led by the Rt. Rev. William (Chip) H. Stokes, the twelfth bishop of the Diocese of New Jersey, since November 2013. Bishop Stokes’ ministry encourages all the congregations of the diocese to become schools for discipleship, offering Christian and spiritual formation for all ages. Diocesan staff and volunteer leaders provide resources for congregational development, stewardship, anti-racism, spiritual development and more. Learn more about the mission and ministry of the Diocese of New Jersey: www.dioceseofnj.org. Sign up for the weekly email newsletter to receive a message from the bishop and stay informed: Link.
St. Bernard’s is one of 16 congregations in the Watchung Convocation, in the northwestern portion of the diocese. The current Dean of the Watchung Convocation is the Rev. Angelo Wildgoose, rector of St. Mark’s Episcopal Church in Plainfield, NJ. Each of the eight convocations in the diocese hold two meetings per year, attended by lay and ordained representatives, one of which is led by diocesan staff. Convocation clergy meet as a monthly Clericus during the program year. Congregations are encouraged to collaborate in youth ministry, outreach, and joint worship. St. Bernard’s has a long standing commitment to Grace’s Kitchen, a soup kitchen hosted by Grace Episcopal Church in Plainfield, a member of the Watchung Convocation. To find a church in our convocation or diocese:
New Jersey ranks sixth out of 100 domestic dioceses in the Episcopal Church in the USA in the number of parishes. We're eighth in number of baptized persons. There are 154 congregations in this diocese, including seasonal, collegiate and institutional chapels. The oldest congregation in the diocese is Saint Peter's Church in Perth Amboy, where services began in 1685. There are more than 15 colonial-era parishes in this diocese. Click here to go to an interactive map of all the churches in the Diocese.
The Reverend Canon William (Chip) Hallock Stokes, age 56, rector of St. Paul’s Church in Delray Beach, Florida, was elected on the fifth ballot as twelfth bishop of the Diocese of New Jersey on May 4, 2013 and was consecrated on November 2, 2013. To learn more about Bishop Stokes, please click here.
There is an annual Diocesan convention, usually in February or March, at varying locations in the Diocese. There are a number of committees, board, agencies, and task forces under the convention that do much work in the diocese, in all sorts of ways.