The Diocese of Bethlehem, founded more than 125 years ago, is the Episcopal Church in 14 counties of eastern and northeastern Pennsylvania (Berks, Bradford, Carbon, Lackawanna, Lebanon, Lehigh, Luzerne, Monroe, Northampton, Pike, Schuylkill, Susquehanna, Wayne and Wyoming), 63 congregations which include some 18,000 baptized members. Diocesan House is in Bethlehem.
The diocesan community has been actively involved in the development of ministries with children, with the poor, the marginalized and the oppressed, and in enabling lay people to claim the primary role they have in ministry by reason of their baptism. Over the past few years, we have been involved also in an effort to build community through telecommunication by helping isolated and small congregations to have electronic telecommunications and conferencing ability with one another, with Diocesan House and, in effect, with people in ministry throughout the world through our email lists.
The way we have developed our regional network, known online as Bakery, as a tool for community and ministry has caught the attention of many. This has earned us a reputation throughout the Episcopal Church as a model diocese in communication.
Additionally, several years ago, the Episcopal Church awarded the Diocese of Bethlehem the unique designation of Jubilee diocese because of diocesan community efforts to enable every congregation to develop an outreach ministry that serves the larger community.
"Live God's love: tell what you have seen and heard" is the diocesan mission statement.
The link among local Episcopal congregations as well as their link with the Episcopal Church, the Anglican Communion, and the first-century church of the Apostles is symbolized in the ministry of the bishop.