18 Nov

Newsletter, November 18

Reverend Sheelagh’s Thought for the Week: November 18, 2015

“I am the Alpha and the Omega,” says the Lord God, who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty.
Revelation 1:8

The Book of Revelation frightens many of us.  In it John speaks of many things that seem bizarre and nightmarish, more aligned with the apocalyptic writers that the homespun Gospel writers. Yet much of our popular entertainment is very dark.  Movies like The Hunger Games; the Twilight series and the whole zombie culture provide us with images no less frightening than the four horsemen of the Book of Revelation. I wonder what it is about our time that lends itself  to the dark themes of death, disease, and devastation.  As we enter the season of waiting for the in-breaking of the light of Christ into our shadowed world, let us listen intently for the messages of God’s love for us all; messages of justice; messages of hope.  And, struggle as it sometimes is, let us trust in Him and not be afraid! +

Stewardship Reflection by Janet Hager

“Do all the good you can. By all the means you can.  In all the ways you can. In all the places you can.  At all the times you can. To all the people you can. As long as ever you can.”
John Wesley

I’ve been thinking a lot about stewardship in the last year.  What does it mean to me?  John Wesley’s statement sums it up.  Do all the good you can do in whatever way you can in where ever you can all the time and to everyone.

Three years ago I chose St. Stephen’s to be my parish home.  Actually St. Stephen’s chose me.  I had left my home parish in Montclair and was searching for a place to call my spiritual home.  I had been searching for about two years before a friend recommended St. Stephen’s.  On my first Sunday I arrived and was greeted by the ushers, heard a wonderful sermon, and was greeted by two people who made a huge impression on me.  The first was Felder Dorn, who at the peace received me warmly and the second was Denise Price.  I found their incredible warmth and greeting to be so welcoming.   I chose to come back the following Sunday.  Again, Felder and Denise were there with their warm welcoming and this time I was able to attend coffee hour.  I was able to connect with some people and began to hear about the social justice work of this congregation.  The work that happens at Christine’s Kitchen, St.  John’s, the IHN program and the countless other Social Justice Ministries that take place here. I give to St.  Stephen’s because I have been blessed to find a parish home that are the hands and feet of Christ in this world of ours.
The value of a gift is not determined by its amount but by the spirit in which it is given.


Stewardship in-gathering will be on the two Sundays following Thanksgiving.
Please be thoughtful and prayerful about what you can give this year in gratitude for all that God and your church means to you.Stewardship in-gathering will be on the two Sundays following Thanksgiving. Please be thoughtful and prayerful about what you can give this year in gratitude for all that God and your church means to you.
We now have an active online giving button on our website.  You can use this to make a one time donation (in case you are away from church), or set up your regular contributions.  See Rev Derek for more information.


Nov 18, Wednesday7:30 pmSocial Justice Book Discussion Group
Nov 21, Saturday8:30am -3:30pmGoing Local Meeting
Vestry & Guiding Team
Grace Church, Madison NJ
Nov 22, Sunday9:45 amTurkey Box Drop Off
Nov 22, Sunday12 pmSt John’s Elizabeth
Dec  2, Wednesday7:30 pmFinance Committee Meeting
Dec 3, Thursday7:00 pmPreschool Committee Meeting<
Dec 5, Saturday10:00 amAll Day Retreat St. John’s Convent Mendham
Dec 6, Sunday11:15 amCookie Extravaganza
Dec 13, Sunday11:30amVestry Meeting

Serving at the Altar Sunday 11/22 & 11/29

8 am Reader: M. Ellingham8 am Reader: M. Walker
10 am Readers:
1. J. James
2. E. Pluta
3. F. Dorn
10 am Readers:
1. F. Taber
2. P. Wick
3. S. Polanco
Chalicists: J. Scharff & D. ColeChalicists: S. Macbeth & J. Hager
Ushers: E. Pluta & C. EhlersUshers: P. Boegershausen & M. Hirshfeld
Coffee hour: Margo Greenfield
Flowers are given by:  Eugene Foley & Sue Macbeth
Coffee hour: The Soughan Family
Flowers are given by:  Sheelagh C. & Ron Clarke

Coffee Hosting And Flowers

Please sign up for coffee hour with Susan Dinan!  Please let Eugene or Claire know if you want to donate flowers.   Please consider taking ONE Sunday in memory of a loved one, or in thanksgiving for an event.  Flowers are priced at $40, $50 or $60 for the two vases.


Tonight  – Join The Conversation
7:30pm in the Rectory
Social Justice Book Discussion Group.
Talking about race and white privilege isn’t easy but it’s what shapes the world of the kids from Patch.  Come finish our discussion of Michelle Alexander’s  The New Jim Crow,  examining mass incarceration of young black and Hispanic men. 7:30pm in the Rectory.

Going Local – All Welcome!
This Saturday November 21 at Grace church in Madison, members of your Vestry and guiding team are meeting with all the other churches involved in the  “going local” Missional project.

Anyone who is interested is welcome to join us. The day starts at 8:30am and finishes by 3:30pm. Just call or email Rev Sheelagh if you want to come.

St John’s 61 Broad Street Elizabeth, NJ 07202
Date: Sunday, November 22nd
Departure Time: 12PM from St. Stephen’s
Thank you for your responses, The items that have been confirmed so far have the names next to them. Please note, Sam and I will collect the food from St. Stephens and drop off to St. John’s as mentioned in our last Sunday Service. The members of their church will distribute to the patrons. We will no longer need volunteers, we will just need donations.
Thank so much in advance for your help. It is because of our caring and
giving community that we are able to bring smiles and full stomachs to the
St. John’s community. Below is a list of what we will need.  The number in
parenthesis indicates approximately how many of each item we need.

1.      Pre-made Turkey & Cheese Sandwiches (20) Steffanie
2.      Pre-made Turkey Sandwiches (20) Linda
3.      Pre-made Ham & Cheese Sandwiches (20) Carole
4.      Pre-made Ham Sandwiches (20) Nancy
5.      Pre-made American Cheese Sandwiches (10) Renee
6.      Pre-made Meat Deli & Cheese Sandwiches (20) e.g. Bologna, etc  Sue
7.      Pre-made Meat Deli & Cheese Sandwiches (20) e.g. Salami, etc Dick & Alex
8.      Pre-made Meat Deli & Cheese Sandwiches (20) e.g. Tuna Suzanne
9.      Hard boiled eggs (6 dozen) Barbara
10.    Fruits (Apples and Oranges) Jean
11.    Bananas Reverend Sheelagh
12.    Condiments To be determined

If you prefer to make a different type of sandwich, Vegetarian or PB&J, just
send me a quick note and I will include it. Please label your type of sandwiches prior to delivery, for better distribution. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact via us email at ssguillenpolanco@gmail.com  or give me a call directly at (201) 779-6852 or Sam at (646) 805-8682.

Heads up for Holiday Giving!
Ellen Pluta will coordinate collections of Angel Tree gifts for our Patch families right after Thanksgiving. With a need for fewer holiday dinners than previous years, feel free to donate at Thanksgiving or at Christmas for Angel Tree gifts.

Annual Turkey Box Dinners-Sunday November 22, 2015
This year, St. Stephen’s will be supporting Patch and IHN families for Thanksgiving with Turkey Box dinners.
The dinners create opportunities for these families to enjoy a traditional holiday
meal. An average of six people enjoy the box dinner, this is a great and easy way for parents and kids to work together on a fun and meaningful community event.
Please bring your “box dinner” to church on November 22nd before the 10:00 am service.
Suggested Menu-The following items are recommended for inclusion in each box
dinner that is donated:
1 sturdy box
1  10 – 15 lb. FROZEN TURKEY
1 disposable aluminum foil roasting pan
2 boxes of stuffing
1 bag of white potatoes OR two cans sweet potatoes
2 cans of vegetables (corn, green beans, peas,)
2 cans of turkey gravy
2 cans cranberry sauce
1 package of rolls or corn muffins
½ gallon of apple or cranberry juice
Dessert-cookies, brownies, pies (no frozen pies)

Advent Quiet Day At St. John Baptist on December 5, 2015
The retreat at the convent of St. John Baptist is planned for December 5, with an Advent theme. Time frame: 10:00am – 5:00pm. In addition to opportunities for prayer with the community, there will be sessions led by Sr. Suzanne Elizabeth. Lunch is provided and Eucharist will take place near the end of the day with Sr. Barbara Jean as presider. Donation: $35.00. Please  give or send checks by November 15 to Theresa Scharff.  These should be made out to Srs. of St. John Baptist.  Any questions: 908 686 5489.

Cookie Extravaganza!
Date: Sunday, December 6th
Place: Fellowship Hall for Coffee Hour
The congregation is invited to bring a plate of cookies for Coffee Hour.  Bring your cookies to Fellowship Hall on your way into church.   It’s a wonderful way to share some yummy treats with your St. Stephen’s Family.  We’ll have a cookie exchange with the leftovers.  For further information, contact Barbara Winson Riedel at 973-625-5726.


The office will be closed Thursday November 26th and Friday November 27.

If you would like an article put in the e-news, please e-mail Claire in the office at church@ststephensmillburn.org