The Standing Committee of the Diocese of Bethlehem is pleased to announce the approved slate of nominees received from the Search Committee for the IX Bishop of Bethlehem.
The Rev. Canon Kevin D. Nichols
We live in a time where religious and other institutions are being dismantled. I see this as a moment for us as the Church to recover our purpose for why we are here - for reconciliation and to offer God’s love and healing where there has been painful damage. The Diocese of Bethlehem, in its diverse landscapes, is rich and fertile ground for God’s planting and pruning (John 15).
Formed in both the Roman Catholic and Anglican/Episcopal traditions, my ministry has been in the mountains and small cities of New Hampshire. I began as a bi-vocational priest in a small rural parish, while working full-time as an account manager in the business world. I have served as rector of a program-size congregation. Currently, as Canon for Mission Resources / CFO of the diocese, I fulfill a strategic role that blends my administrative and mission backgrounds. I believe I bring particular skills, a non-anxious presence, and a listening heart to the work that is before you.
I am blessed to be the "adopted" father of four adult children and grandfather - “Boppy”- of three. As the pastor of a Border Collie, I have become quite a walker. At sun-up, Clara and I make the long loop around our neighborhood. When a pastoral concern or sorrow needs careful attention – we walk! My wife Patti, a licensed clinical social worker, and I love getaways to the beach, kayaking on a lake and hiking. I am an adventurous cook and love to share meals with friends and family. Lastly, I enjoy taking in local sporting events and rooting on a New England team.
I welcome the opportunity for us to come to know each other more deeply in the days ahead,
Six months ago, I refused to look down as we ascended 415 feet on Zumanjaro, the world’s tallest drop ride. We paused, then plunged 90 miles per hour to the ground in 6 seconds. They say on a clear day you can see Philadelphia from the top. I wouldn’t know, as I didn’t look out. Now, I am a coaster aficionado, but drop rides terrify me. In line, I said, “I’m not doing this….” My sons responded, “You can do this, Mom.” And George recited his courage mantra, “Do scary things.”
Three weeks ago, our family talked into the wee hours with one question before us: should I be invited to continue to slate, were we all in? We discussed our fears, our hopes, our wonderings. Finally, I asked each person; one by one the answers came,“yes…yes…yes….” Do scary things.
Not that you all are scary. To the contrary, you are warm, welcoming, disarmingly authentic, and clearly courageous. I am drawn to your love of Jesus—it shows. You do scary things—big things that take courage. I admire that in you.
We don’t know where the Spirit will lead us. We do know the future will ask courage of us all. What I can tell you about myself and my family is this: we are in.
I’ve been married for thirty-one years to the love of my life, Nathan. We have two sons, George and John, who make me laugh and make me cry—mostly for joy—all the time. I love Jesus, I love the Church, and I work hard—when I’m not playing.
Do scary things. That, I believe, is what the Gospel requires of us. I look forward to our conversations at the walkabouts.