Julia McCray-Goldsmith installed as Canon for Discipleship

On Thursday, January 14, the Rt. Rev. Marc Handley Andrus installed the Rev. Canon Julia McCray-Goldsmith as the Canon for Discipleship in the Episcopal Diocese of California. The installation took place at Grace Cathedral, San Francisco, during a regularly scheduled weekly Evensong. As part of the installation, McCray-Goldsmith was seated in a designated stall in the Great Quire of the cathedral.

The order of service followed the traditional pattern for Evensong, and the service music was a setting by Kenneth Leighton. William Crotch composed the Anglican chant setting of Psalm 47 used in the service. The readers for the night were David Crosson and Aaron McCray-Goldsmith. The lessons were Baruch 5 and Mark 1.1-11.

Before installing her, the Rt. Rev. Marc Handley Andrus, bishop of California, introduced the new office of Canon for Discipleship and talked about choosing Julia for the role. Andrus said, “Julia preceded me in the diocesan offices. She was hired by my predecessor, and then I gave her more work. Julia oversees camps and conference centers, Safe Church procedures, youth and young adult formation, adult formation, is our liaison to the resource center, leads retreats, and much, much more!

“The content of what is taught and what is learned is worth deep thought. Julia has opened these ministries to people with deep discernment — including her own discernment to ordained life — over time. She is consistently offering new ways of living as a disciple, from packing food at her diaconal ordination to collecting over 300 books for this installation. May we all follow in her way of being a disciple.”

After that introduction McCray-Goldsmith offered her “gifts of teaching, service, and leadership for the ongoing life and mission of the Diocese of California” with God’s help, and was named Canon for Discipleship. She was vested in a cope as a sign of her new office before being installed in her appointed chair.

After the installation, Lee Caraher — a longtime friend and colleague of McCray-Goldsmith’s — preached the homily. In her homily Caraher extolled McCray-Goldsmith’s virtues of being a good friend, model mother, and thriving in new ideas and places “that can be hard for Episcopalians.” Caraher also noted how much poorly thought out information exists on the internet about “discipleship.”

In response to that, Caraher suggested that “Bringing people closer to God and a loving God is the silver bullet to keep [the Anglican/Episcopal] tradition alive, and that’s done by disciples who disciple one another,” which she said McCray-Goldsmith modeled as well — including helping Episcopalians share their faith when they aren’t comfortable with doing so.

Following the Evensong, worshippers, friends, and family gathered in the Chapter House Dining Room for a taco and burrito bar reception, as well as inscribing and blessing books that McCray-Goldsmith has invited people around the country to donate. The list where books were available invited the donations with the words, “Join me in serving a Richmond elementary school with the gift of literacy. Buy a book you like for a school child, or a whole classroom set!”

The Rev. Cn. Julia McCray-Goldsmith’s office is at Diocesan House, 1055 Taylor Street, San Francisco, though she takes meetings throughout the Bay Area. If you have questions for her about the ministry areas in which she is involved or oversees, email her at juliam@diocal.org or visit www.diocal.org, and browse the Discipleship navigation button.

Additional photos from the Evensong and reception are available on Facebook here.