The Connecticut diocesan annual convention this week is the fifth, I believe, one that I have been to. As always, I look forward to it as a somewhat challenging, somewhat difficult, and thoroughly intriguing two days.
The bulk of the convention work revolves around the various resolutions: official statements on cultural, social, or liturgical life made by the diocese. I always find that at least one or two of the resolutions make me deeply uncomfortable. Perhaps I disagree on the political or cultural import or perhaps I simply don't see the reason for their importance and, shallowly, would like to keep the agenda for the day moving. But that is the challenge of the Christian Church. We don't all agree. In fact, we don't all like each other.
C.S. Lewis once mentioned this problem in the 'Screwtape Letters' and the fact that the Devil tempted the man very strongly by causing the man to focus more on how annoying, how human, the other people in the pews were and less on the truth of God. Grand ideals are easy to hold until the daily irritations of daily life take precedence; sort of similar to the best intentions of a diet or exercise plan.
The convention challenges one in that way. If you don't agree with a person's choice, can you still love them? We have to, if we are followers of Christ. We can seek to change them, persuade them, or show them alternatives, but in the end, we have to find love and forgiveness. In today's viciously torn political world, that is a hard, hard task. I have faith that the Church can do so, has done so, and will do so. And that is why, I look forward to the weekend; to a time when even the deepest felt opinions are discussed openly, honestly, and with love. May all our conversations and debates be so!
Anne Hall Convention Delegate from Saint John's Parish
In the fall of each year delegates gather for the annual convention of the Episcopal Church in Connecticut. This year the 233rd convention will take place in Greenwich on November 17 and 18.
Delegates will hear reports and vote on 14 resolutions ranging from budget matters to minimizing gender language in Prayer Book revision. In addition, elections to the Standing Committee and Mission Council will be held.
Four valuable workshops are scheduled for Friday. They will provide information to delegates on social media practices, parishes in transition, nourishing awareness of the Holy, and sabbatical programs.
Please keep the convention in your prayers as delegates from every Episcopal parish in Connecticut gather for this important event in the life of the ECCT.
Bob Osborne Convention Delegate from Saint John's Parish
2018 Annual Giving Campaign is falling short!
With commitment Sunday already behind us, we are far from making our goal of getting 100% return of pledge cards. To date only at 61% of the cards have been returned and half of the outstanding cards are from current pledgers. I need your help to be able to put together a budget for 2018 and assess our financial ability to call Mother Sandra. If you have not already done so, please return your card to the parish office before Thanksgiving. If you have any questions or concerns about your pledge you can call me at 860-379-7612 or email me at email@example.com.
Thank you for your help! --Diane Hayes, Treasurer--
November Donations for Those in Need: Food and Coats. Both Little Free Pantry's are in need of non-perishable items, personal hygiene items and cleaning supplies. Please place your donations in the receptacles in the Narthex. Thanks!
St. John's Garden Scholarship Program -We are looking for interested high school students to take advantage of this opportunity to be eligible for a $1,000 scholarship upon graduation. Just 25 hours of garden volunteer work required. Time may be accumulated from year to year and student need not be a member of St. John's.Call Norma Pappalardo 860-944-5541 to sign up.
Coffee Hour Sign Up Sheet - We have posted the coffee hour schedule for 10am services in the fall. This is an important ministry of hospitality. Please consider signing up.
Free Community Thanksgiving Meal - Thanksgiving Day, Thursday, November 23 at noon at North Congregational Church. Call (860) 379-2466 for information.
PRAYER SHAWL BASKETS ARE BACK - Please help us by adding a row or two today! Completed shawls are on the rack by the sacristy door. Please let Mother Cosman know if you would like to share a shawl with someone in need.
Ecumenical Thanksgiving Service - St. John's will be hosting our community Thanksgiving service on Tuesday, November 21st at 7:00pm.
HOLIDAY SCRIP GIFT CARDS - Updated Scrip order forms are available and more information is available in the parish hall. We will take orders 11/19, 11/26, 12/3 and 12/10, with delivery prior to Christmas. Thanks to a generous donor, our profits will be doubled on these dates.
LIGHT NEW HARTFORD - December 3rd - Tree Lighting at 6pm - Mark your calendars!
Holy Land Gifts - coming to St. John's on December 10th!
New Pageant Directors Named - Chris and Jamie Snyder have volunteered to direct the Pageant this year. Mark your calendars for the pageant on Sunday, January 7th and rehearsal on Saturday, January 6th
Jesse Tree - 11/26
Put your elf hat on! St. John's will once again participate in providing holiday gifts for 25 children from the Torrington area. We will give an article of clothing, toy and stocking to each child. There will also be the opportunity to donate food for the children's family for them to make Christmas dinner.
On 11/26, a tag for each item will be hung on the Jesse tree (Each child will have 3 tags: one for a toy, one for a stocking and one for an article of clothing). Parishioners may choose and sign out as many tags as they wish. All items will be due on 12/10 when we will sort the gifts after church. Please contact Beth Coates (firstname.lastname@example.org or 860-806-2728) if you have questions.
Also- Our social worker from Covenant for Care is picking up the gifts for us this year, so no drivers are needed. Thank you!!
VOLUNTEERS NEEDED Counters Needed - We need a counter for the 5th Sunday of the month and substitutes, please contact the office if you are interested.
Open Door Soup Kitchen - join our team for December 16th (no Open Door in November) at St. James in Winsted. (9:00am-1:00pm)
Bell Ringers - sign up to toll the tower bell for worship to begin our 9am worship.
Coffee Hour Volunteers - Show hospitality by hosting our social time together following worship. Co-hosting with another person or family is encouraged.
Participants for November 19, 2017 Please let the office know of substitutions. Thanks.
8:00 AM Chalice - Gordon Ross 10:00 AM Chalice - Donna Colavecchio
10:00 AM Acolytes - Mary Healey, Calli Smith, Amelia Ficalora
8:00 AM Reader - Gordon Ross 10:00 AM Reader - Patrice Olson
8:00 AM Greeters - Nancy Butler & Tom Chappell 10:00 AM Greeters - Ginny Hoffmann
Vestry Greeter - Diane Hayes
10:00 AM Bell Ringer - Volunteer Needed
10:00 Coffee Hour - The Colavecchios
Counters - Ginny Hoffmann & Brian Jones
Altar Guild (November) - Ann Atwood Molly Read
Nursery Staff - Molly Lukiwsky
Godly Play Storyteller- Stone Soup Godly Play Doorkeeper- Stone Soup
Blessings & Peace,
The Rev. Sandra L. Cosman St. John's Church
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