The Rt. Rev. Mark M. Beckwith, Bishop of Newark

The Rt. Rev. Mark M. Beckwith

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The Bishop's Executive Assistant, Kay Lark, can be reached at klark [at] dioceseofnewark [dot] org or 973-430-9976. The Bishop's Office fax number is 973-622-6508.

See also Bishop's Office Resources.

Bishop Beckwith's favorite benediction

May God give you grace never to sell yourself short.
Grace to risk something big for something good.
Grace to remember that the world is now too dangerous for anything but truth,
and too small for anything but love.
– William Sloan Coffin

On the Bishop's blog, Signs of God's Grace:

"Encountering the other" was the theme of our just-concluded House of Bishops meeting at the Kanuga Conference Center in Western North Carolina. We looked at the "other" through the lens of race, culture, Native American history and interfaith ministry – through a series of meditations offered by various bishops. Table discussions on these issues followed. They were deep and very personal, and inspired action. I was invited to give the meditation on interfaith ministry, and once I was able to work through various levels of anxiety, I was grateful for it, because it gave me the opportunity to reflect on how interfaith relationships, which have been a thread throughout my life, have deepened my relationship with the living Christ.

Over and over again, Jesus went to the edge. Immediately after his baptism, he was driven to the edge – into the wilderness, where he spent forty days and nights. While at the edge, he rediscovered the center – which for him was God.

The yes came first. Which may same like a contradiction to the Biblical record, because Jesus’ 40-day encounter with the desert and the devil (which the church has long commemorated as the season of Lent) suggests that it was all about no. Jesus saying no to the cruel temptations the devil dangled in front of him; the desert denying him the basic necessities of food and water. And so, over the centuries, in an effort to be in solidarity with Jesus’ ordeal in the wilderness, faithful Christians have set aside Lent to say no or to engage in various acts of self-denial. No to French fries or chocolate or alcohol or channel surfing – or other distractions or pleasures. All done with the intention of bringing us closer to God.

Like many of us, on Tuesday evening I watched the President’s State of the Union address. President Obama offered an impassioned appeal for us as Americans to provide help and hope for everyone in the country. Everybody deserves a shot, he said; and he went on about our ability to overcome adversity through hard work and investing in hope; and providing opportunity through initiatives that will level the uneven playing field.