“Offer to God a sacrifice of thanksgiving, and make good your vows to the Most High”
Dear Fellow Parishioners,
Your continued support and loyalty to St. Paul’s is greatly appreciated and we give thanks for your generosity, your commitment to the Lord and your love. This year we have been managing to maintain momentum as a parish, and it is pleasing to see smiling faces in the pews and to experience a general feeling of joy in our services and our activities. Summer is now over, judging by the temperatures, and, with the arrival of those revisiting or visiting for the first time from much cooler climes, our church schedule is starting to fill up once again. We have plans and we have tasks ahead of us.
I would like to commend the diligent work of the Calling Committee, under the leadership of Kay Malone, as they have endeavored to get a sense of the parish through the Parish Profile, and to have it published electronically for prospective candidates to the Rectorship to peruse. They have also been active in devising written and oral questions for those prospective candidates when the time comes to have them answered. Thanks to one and all on that Committee.
The Mission of St. Paul’s continues to advance with such events as: a fifth round of ESL classes, under the leadership of Rochelle Thompson, is progressing well; Mary Jo Smith, our Junior Warden, with the able assistance of Ruth Elliott, our Parish Secretary, is in the process of reconstituting and reorganizing our Nursery and Sunday School to make it even more accessible for younger families to attend our services; the Youth Group, sadly, is no more at this time, due to diminished numbers. It was thought that, if youthful persons present themselves in the future, then possibly we may be able to reactivate it. The Healing Journey is continuing to meet the needs of those who suffer from the effects of domestic and sexual violence, and Estrella Fitch is continuing to provide wonderful leadership. Among other Ministries we will be having a major rummage sale, led by Peggy Ogram, the proceeds of which will go to support the training of Lilia Mendoza to become a Deacon in the Episcopal Church; the Acolytes are being nurtured and trained by Moira Christiansen; the Prayers and Squares team, through their ministry and the quilts they produce, provide comfort peace and healing to many afflicted persons; The St. Cecelia Choir, under the leadership of Tom Fletcher (organist and pianist), and the Canterbury Bells (both of which would gladly appreciate more membership) are practicing frequently to provide Music leadership and experience to our Services. Under the leadership of Lucy Shipp, the Outreach Team, which supports the wider community, is channeling funds and sundries to that end. Profound thanks goes also to Shelly Gregory, our Senior Warden, who “keeps her finger on the pulse” of all that is happening at St. Paul’s. These may be the more obvious ministries at St. Paul’s, but there are also many more individuals who are working hard for the benefit of the Church and its members, and we thank God for all of them.
We especially thank Elery Gross, who has agreed to spearhead out Stewardship Campaign and Pledge drive. The enclosed tri-fold brochure further outlines our Stewardship plans and goals. On the back page is your pledge card. Please complete it and bring it to the Church on December 7, 2014. If you are unable to do so, please feel free to send it, or deliver it, to the Church office in any way that is convenient for you. This year we have had some issues that have arisen with our buildings, several incidents with the Air Conditioning systems, for example. I’m sure that many of us remember, some with fondness, August 17 of this year, 2014, when we held our Service in the Kinsolving room because there was no cool air in the Sanctuary. That and other events have caused us to realize that we have to make significant improvements to our church and its buildings over the next year in order to keep them in operation. We request a pledge/committed donation so that we can have a basis from which to generate our budget for 2015 and to begin the process of such capital improvements as may be necessary, and, if you can see your way clear to do so, add an extra 1% (or more). Even 1% will add up to quite a total. As with the previous year, we have had to dip into reserves in order to meet budget costs, this is a situation we cannot sustain, so we ask you to consider prayerfully what you can contribute so that the various crucial ministries, and therefore the mission, of St. Paul’s will continue.
One other item of interest, we have successfully established an Endowment Fund for those who wish to make donations to St. Paul’s or in the form of a bequest or through an insurance policy. The Fund is being managed by Mr. Jay Laughlin of Edward Jones who will be reporting to the Endowment Committee. Any questions regarding this may be directed to the Members of that Committee: Max Bardo, Rob Filbey and Diane Filler.
Once again, thank you for the support you provide, and God Bless you.
Fr. Paul Gambling+