Presiding Bishop Curry’s Gala Keynote Address

The Most Reverend Michael Curry, Presiding Bishop and Primate of the Episcopal Church, offers the keynote address at the ECS-NJ Farewell Gala celebrating the ministries of Bishop Chip Stokes, Mrs. Susan Stokes, and retiring diocesan staff members Canon Ann Notte, Canon Mary Ann Rhoads, and Ms. Mary Anne Clisham. Use the closed caption button to choose English, Spanish, Haitian Creole, or Igbo captions.

Presiding Bishop Keynote Highlights Farewell Gala

“It’s just wonderful to be a part of this wondrous transition in leadership and and I thank God for what God is doing and what God will do in the future,” said Presiding Bishop MIchael Curry in the early moments of his more than 30-minute tribute Sunday to Bishop Stokes, who is retiring on June 26 with the ordination and consecration of the 13th Bishop of New Jersey, the Rev. Dr. Sally French.

Curry, who will himself retire in 2024, also paid tribute to Susan Stokes, and to retiring diocesan staff members Canon Mary Ann Rhoads—who has served as executive assistant to the bishop for more than 30 years—Canon Ann Notte, with more than 20 years at the diocese, and Mary Anne Clisham.

The event served not only as a farewell tribute to the Stokes and to retiring staff, but as a fund-raising opportunity for one of Bishop Stokes’ crowning legacies in the diocese, Episcopal Community Services. 

So far, the gala has raised more than $50,000 to aid in ECS’s work of advocating for and directly serving the poor and disenfranchised in our community. Monies raised will go toward the new Stokes Endowment Fund.

Congregations, companies, and individuals who wish to support the Stokes Endowment can use the form on this page for either a one-time or recurring donation.

Donate to the ECS-NJ Stokes Endowment Fund