Stephen J. Batten writes on the weblog of the National Episcopal AIDS Coalition:
On August 18, 2013, parishes throughout the Diocese of East Carolina were directed by our Bishop Provisional, the Rt. Rev. Peter Lee, to commemorate the Baptisms of Manteo and Virginia Dare in 1587 on Roanoke Island as a part of the settlement later styled “The Lost Colony.”
… Manteo and Virginia Dare were two very different people, reconciled through one baptism, into faith in Christ, “built together spiritually into a dwelling place for God.” (Ephesians 2:22 NRSV) As these two were reconciled together as one in Christ, so are we all … today, HIV positive and HIV negative. NEAC strives on a continuing basis to address the stigma attached to HIV by reminding TEC and those around this faith family that we are equal and loved children of a kind Creator that bids us to settle ourselves as one body of faithful people.
This collect commemorates the baptisms:
O God, you have created every human being in your image and each one is precious in your sight: Grant that in remembering the baptisms of Manteo and Virginia Dare, we may grow in honoring your gift of diversity in human life; become stronger in living out our baptismal vow to respect the dignity of every human being; and bring into the fellowship of the risen Christ those who come to him in faith, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.
The 77th General Convention authorized trial use of commemorative rites on these dates:
- March 28: James Solomon Russell
- April 17: Emily Cooper
- ￼￼May 15: Junia and Andronicus
- ￼July 1: Pauli Murray
- July 29: First Ordination of Women to the Priesthood in the Episcopal Church
- August 17: Manteo, and Virginia Dare
- September 23: Thecla
For more information: the Diocese of North Carolina offers a brief video on the Lost Colony.
Image: Icon of Manteo and Virginia Dare, written by Cheryl Hendrick for the Diocese of East Carolina