Rickel Appointed Bishop Liason of Cursillo

The Rt. Rev. Gregory Rickel, Bishop of Olympia, was appointed as bishop liaison to the Episcopal Cursillo ministry by the Most Reverend Katharine Jefferts Shori, Presiding Bishop of the Episcopal Church on June 5, 2013. He replaced the Rt. Rev. Alan Scarfe, Bishop of Iowa, who has served as bishop liaison since 2006.

Bishop Rickel attended Cursillo #41 in Arkansas and served as head spiritual director on two teams before accepting a call as rector of St. James Episcopal Church in Austin, Texas. He has been active in the Cursillo ministry since becoming Bishop of Olympia in September 2007. “I am very honored to serve as Bishop Liaison for Cursillo in these upcoming years,” said Bishop Rickel.

Bishop Schori said in her appointment letter, “I give thanks for the ministry of Cursillo in deepening the faith and relationship of Episcopalians with God in Christ. I made my Cursillo more than 20 years ago in Oregon and understand the importance of focusing one’s love of God as an agent of transformation in the world. I pray that Cursillo may continue to encourage and nurture faithful living as a disciple of Jesus.”

Bishop Rickel was elected the eighth bishop of the Diocese of Olympia on May 12, 2007, ordained bishop on Sept. 15, 2007, and installed on Sept. 16, 2007, at St. Mark’s Cathedral in Seattle. Rickel has served the wider church as a stewardship consultant for the Stewardship Office of the Episcopal Church and for the Episcopal Network for Stewardship. He also served on the Resolution B004 Mission Funding Task Force and as an Episcopal representative to the Earth Charter meeting in Geneva, Switzerland. He is a trainer for the Climate Project. He has received training from the National Organization for Victim Assistance and has worked on disaster debriefing for the Arkansas Attorney General Office.

At the time of his election, Rickel was the rector of St. James’ Episcopal Church in Austin, Texas. Previously he served as the vicar of St. Peter’s Episcopal Church in Conway, Ark. He was ordained deacon in July 1996 and priest in January 1997. Before ordination to the priesthood he was a hospital administrator in Arkansas and Texas. Bishop Rickel embraces radical hospitality that welcomes all, no matter where they find themselves on their journey of faith. He envisions a church that is a safe and authentic community in which to explore God’s infinite goodness and grace as revealed in the life and continuing revelation of Jesus Christ. As Bishop of Olympia he has articulated a vision with three main mission foci: congregational development, concentration on those 35 years of age and under, and stewardship of all creation.

Bishop Rickel was born June 27, 1963 in Omaha, Neb., and has been married to Marti, a psychiatric nurse practitioner, since 1984. They have one child, Austin. You may follow Bishop Rickel's blog at www.bishoprickel.com.

To learn more about Cursillo in the Diocese of West Texas, click here.