Rev. Sheelagh’s Thought For The Week
“Therefore, we ourselves boast of you among the churches of God
for your steadfastness and faith…” 2 Thessalonians 1: 3
There was a moment when I became aware in my sabbatical travels of how much I was “boasting” about the ministries of St. Stephen’s, to the churches of God I was visiting! The boast I was making was about the Drumming Camp, but with it went all the other things that we stretch ourselves to do, what Paul calls the “work of faith.”
Within the missional church project, there is a different set of metrics that may help us see “the work of faith” more clearly. What if we measured the encounters with all God’s people that happen because of our existence and ministries in our buildings? Think about it – we have three big AA meetings a week – that’s about 6,000 attendees; we have a preschool of 80 children plus 24 teaching staff for 40 weeks of the year – that’s 20,800 preschool attendees. We hold a monthly seniors’ lunch of about 14 plus 3 helpers, for 10 months a year – that’s 170 attendees. We host Papermill Chorus, which is 60 young people for about 30 weeks a year – another 1,800 – and then there’s 14 people from IHN families each year and all the volunteers – another 130 or so. The PATCH kids average about 20 kids and 15 volunteers – another 175. Plus, we host three organ recitals at 60 on average – 180, and so it goes on. Oh, and don’t forget church attendance at about 65 average a week equals about 3,300 a year.
Back of the envelope math – about 32,500 people a year – an average weekly attendance of 625 children of God!
That’s not even considering our external outreach at Christine’s Kitchen three times a year, and St. John’s kitchen three times a year and other things we do out there in the community. Yes, there is much “work of faith” to boast of at St. Stephen’s. Small we may be, but we are a real presence in this community!
|Nov 3, Thursday||7pm-9:30pm||Preschool Committee Meeting|
|Nov 5, Saturday||9am-3pm||Deacons Commission of Ministry Conference|
|Nov 6, Sunday||11:30am-12:15pm||Celebration of Dr. Rev. Derek Darves’s Ministry|
|Nov 8, Tuesday||11am-2pm||Senior Luncheon|
|Nov 12, Saturday||10:30am-1pm||Christine’s Kitchen|
|Nov 13, Sunday||4pm-5pm||Beckerath Organ Recital|
|Nov 15, Tuesday||7:30pm-10pm||Finance Committee Meeting|
|Nov 20, Sunday||11:30am-1pm||Vestry Meeting|
Serving at the Altar 10/30 & 11/6
|8am Reader: C. Francis||8am Reader: M. Walker|
1. P. Wick
2. B. Riedel
3. E. Pluta
1. F. Taber
2. F. Dorn
3. K. Wade
|Chalicist: D. Cole||Chalicist: J. Soughan|
|Ushers: O. & P. Moore||Ushers: J. Hager & M.A. Chech|
|Altar Guild: C. Francis & J Dorn||Altar Guild: M. Walker & A. Cole|
|Coffee Hour: C. Francis||Coffee Hour: Vestry|
|Altar Flowers: Open||Altar Flowers: Rev. Sheelagh|
Stewardship “Living Generously”
Living Generously Is our theme this year, shortly you will be receiving a letter inviting you to be thoughtful about the ways in which your gift makes a difference to others. Please take the time during the next month to consider what you might give for the mission administry of St. Stephen’s. The in-gathering will be around thanksgiving time.
A Message from Sam & Soraya Polanco
I’m sure you’ve read or heard that messages surround us all the time. We have been engrossed in our everyday lives that we tend to forget some of the messages in the Bible or what spiritual texts have taught us. We’ve recently been inspired by quotes of service and the will to empower, “with thought, word and deed.”
A quote from Harold S Kushner stood out: “Is there an answer to the question of why bad things happen to good people?…The response would be…to forgive the world for not being perfect, to forgive God for not making a better world, to reach out to the people around us, and to go on living despite it all…no longer asking why something happened, but asking how we will respond, what we intend to do now that it has happened.”
Our St. John’s ministry can’t answer why there are families in need of food, shelter, etc. But, our response is to reach out to those around us, not asking why – but, when is the next food ministry. On November 12th, Claas Elhers and our team of contributors will provide for those in need at Christine’s Kitchen in West Orange.
With those inspirational quotes, I want to assure our contributors to our food ministries that we will not end our outreach program, so come out and respond on 11/12/16 for West Orange and 01/22/2017 for St. John’s in Elizabeth to assist those good people.
Thanks for your contributions to help feed those at St. John’s this past week – 10/23/2016 – we were able to raise $580.00 dollars!
Truly appreciate those who responded to the call!
Sam and Soraya Polanco
FUNd Raiser at ArteVino, Millburn, New Jersey. To all you artists and those who think you are not artists: let’s get together for a brunch at ArteVino which will help raise fun and funds for St. Stephen’s!! If you think you would be interested in an event like this, please let me know in person, by phone
(908 686 5489) or email email@example.com
Celebration Farewell Coffee Hour for Dr. Rev. Derek Darves
Sunday, November 6 11:30am-12:15pm
Please join us on Sunday November 6 for a special coffee hour as we celebrate Rev. Derek Darves. His two years as Associate Rector has gone by so quickly. We thank him for his ministry and support during this time wish him the best of luck in his future endeavors and will be sending him off with prayers, good wishes, and of course an extended coffee hour!! If you would like to contribute please see Denise Price on Sunday or contact her by phone (917) 548-5520 or email at Denise.firstname.lastname@example.org.
Interfaith Election Prayer Vigil
Saint Rose Of Lima Church November 7, 2016, 7:30pm-8:30pm
Please join the Millburn – Short Hills Local Houses of Worship community for an Interfaith Election Prayer Vigil.
Christines Kitchen Saturday, November 12
From 10:30am to 1:15pm we serve neighbors in need at Christine’s Kitchen at Holy Trinity in West Orange. Holy Trinity is located at Washington and Main Streets in West Orange. Parking is on the street. We can use entrees, fruit, other foods and volunteers; If you feel like bringing something additional, do so! Food will not go to waste.
Call Claas at 908 451-0426 if you want to volunteer or contribute or email him at email@example.com.
BECKERATH ORGAN RECITALS 47th Season (2016-2017)
Sunday November 13, 2016, at 4 pm – Friends of Music at Saint Stephen’s
INTRODUCING! COLIN MACKNIGHT – November 13, 2016, at 4 pm.
Admission is by donation at the door ($10 suggested). Children accompanied by an adult are cordially invited to come as guests. A reception to meet the artist follows the recital.
COLIN MACKNIGHT is a C.V. Starr Doctoral Fellow at The Juilliard School, where he also received his Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees. Colin has been the recipient of numerous scholarships and prizes, including the American Guild of Organists NYC Chapter competition, followed by first prize in the AGO Northeast Regional Competition, which won him a “Rising Star” recital at the 2016 AGO National Convention in Houston. At Juilliard Colin studies with Grammy award winner and chair of the organ department, Paul Jacobs. As Assistant Organist at NYC’s Church of the Resurrection under music director David Enlow, Colin’s responsibilities include both accompanying and conducting the professional choir which performs over 50 choral mass settings each year. Colin MacKnight’s recent solo recitals include St. Thomas Fifth Avenue, the National Cathedral in Washington, DC, and this season will include NYC’s St. Patrick’s Cathedral, among other venues.
Coffee Hour & Altar Flowers
If you would like to sign up for coffee and flowers the sign up sheet is in the Narthex on the bulletin board.
Dates & Deadlines
If you have any dates or events that need adding to the St. Stephen’s Calendar please send them to Claire, and all articles and e-mails for the newsletter by NOON on Tuesday to firstname.lastname@example.org. Thank You.
Please note the Parish Office is closed on Mondays