The Messenger

News & Views from St. Stephen's Church, Schenectady

June, 2007


Opportunities For Involvement This Summer



Vacation Bible School is the week of June 25th to June 30th this year.  Bible school will take place at Union Presbyterian Church.  Each weekday the program is from 9:30 to 12:30 with lunch included.  On Saturday, June 30th at 10:00am, we will meet at St. Stephen’s Church to worship and celebrate the week.   If you would like your children to participate, ask Laura Davis for a registration form.  Once you fill it out you can give the registration back to Laura Davis.


We are looking forward to taking off and soaring to new heights, meeting new friends and learning about the Bible.  It is truly a terrific week for all.  If you have any questions, please ask Laura Davis.


Lunch Program

As part of the SICM Summer Lunch program for children in Schenectady, St. Stephen’s will be serving lunches at Jerry Burrell Park on Hamilton Street the week of June 25th.  We need at least 4 volunteers each day to set up, serve and clean up, and to have fun with the kids in the park.  The time commitment is about 1 1/2  - 2 hours, from about 11:30 to 1:00.  We will post the exact hours and details soon.  Please sign up at the shop.


Home Furnishings Program

During the first week in July, (July 1 - July 9) St. Stephen’s will have two truck runs for the Home Furnishings Program, picking up and delivering donated furniture for people in need.  We need crews of three for each run – anyone age 16 or older is welcome!   Please sign up in the parish hall to contribute a couple hours of your time and strength.  Runs can be made any day or time; please specify your preference.  Questions?  Call Richey Woodzell, 372-9398.


Also, the Home Furnishings Program is looking for volunteers who are available weekdays, to drive their truck for pickups on short notice.  If you’re a licensed driver at least 26 years old, like to drive a truck and would like to help for an hour or two occasionally (whenever you’re willing and available), please talk to Richey Woodzell or call the Home Furnishings Program administrator at 346-2444.


GE Sells Plastics Business Unit to Buy Workcamp Shares!!


We can’t confirm this rumor, but is it just coincidence that GE announced the sale of their plastics business for billions of dollars in the same week that the St. Stephen’s Youth Group began selling their widely coveted Workcamp shares?


Workcamp shares went on sale Sunday, May 27 - get yours now before GE buys them all up!


As always, proceeds from the shares help support the Youth Group’s trip to Appalachia, where the group gathers with hundreds of other teenagers to repair homes for people unable to do the work themselves.


Book Review:  The Friendship of Women by Joan Chittister


This small book, 89 pages, has a lot to say about friendship over the years, and how the meaning of this word has changed.  Women’s friendship has recently been seen as much more relevant and powerful in our society.  As she looks at each of twelve women Joan Chittister also looks at twelve qualities of friendship.  The women are both Old and New Testament, although most are found in the NT.  The qualities of friendship range from growth, wisdom, leadership to truth, joy, trust and love. In each chapter she describes the aspect of friendship, then tells about the woman who has lived her life exemplifying it.


In her epilogue Chittister summarizes the qualities of friendship and also her hopes for the future of women and their friendships.  “It is precisely in their penchant for bonding, for tending, for befriending, for embracing, for the gathering  of peoples that women’s gift for the creation of human community becomes most clear.”   She also includes a list  of  scripture references for each of the women.  A book I have found to be a friend for a few quiet minutes. 



Christian Education Search Committee News


After sending out the mailing to all members of our parish, the Christian Ed Search Committee is looking forward to interviewing three talented candidates to fill the position of Christian Education Director. Interviews will be held on June 3, and hopefully a recommendation made to the Vestry for their June meeting. If all goes as planned, the new director will begin employment this summer and will be instrumental in getting the fall program off and running.


 The Foundation Committee


What is the “Foundation Committee”?  It is a group of parishioners who have an assignment to set up procedures for grant applications and to make grants with the approval of the Vestry.


Who are these folks and how did they get on this committee?  David Carroll and Budd Mazurek were appointed by the Vestry.  Cynde Schwartz and Carole Merrill-Mazurek were appointed by the Parish Council.  Scott Kilbourn, Doreen May, and Sue Feyrer were elected at the Annual Meeting.


Where does this money for grants come from?  The St. Stephen’s Endowment generates the money.  The philosophy governing that Endowment is that we hope to have it grow at a rate greater than inflation.  This means that we are able to preserve the real value of the Endowment while using any additional gains to meet needs both at St. Stephen’s and in our community.


What if I have further questions?  Please contact the co-chairs of the committee, David Carroll ( and Budd Mazurek.



Parish Picnic – June 10th


The annual June Parish picnic will be held after the 10:15 service on June 10th at the church. We will provide hamburgers, hot dogs, rolls and condiments, chips and lemonade.  Please bring a salad, fruit or dessert to share.  Bring your sneakers and Frisbee!



Last Day of Sunday School is June 10th


No year will be complete without saying ”thank you” to those who volunteered their time and resources to the Church school program.

Thank you to Alli DeBritz and Tyleigh Versocki who choreographed and directed our Christmas presentation this year.   And thank you to Allison de Kanel who wrote the passages for the Christmas story.  From dancing presents to beautiful angels, the kids had a great time and performed wonderfully.  Thank you to Stacy DeBritz who created a beautiful Jesse Tree banner.  The kids learned about what a Jesse tree is and about how many pieces can come together to create something so special.  Thank you to Richey Woodzell who is always willing to help with whatever comes her way.  A special thank you to Richey for reviving the Nursery.

Thank you to all who have volunteered in the Nursery:  Julie Steele, Pam Guthrie, Wendy Koreman, Denise Crates, Tim and Jess Brennan, Erin Cohen, George and Richey Woodzell, Emma Koch, Kate Casale, Britta Kilbourn, Tyleigh Versocki, Alli DeBritz, and Emily Mertz.

Thank you to those who taught the children and youth this year:  Allison de Kanel, Peter Nelson, Trudy North, Dave Crates, Diane Reed, Melinda Renken, Laura Davis, Richey Woodzell, Tracy Ormsbee, and George Woodzell.


And thank YOU for bringing your children to church school each week, for contributing to the food drive over Lent, for the Heart-to-Heart Kids kits over Epiphany, and for bringing in school supplies last September.  We could not have a Church school program without you.




Bible Study


Now that spring is finally here, it is time to start thinking about fall, and Bible Study! I have been looking over the possibilities, and there are a number of excellent courses available, good for both newcomers to Bible study and those who have had some experience. We will start with a shorter course, 7 or 8 weeks, in the fall: "Amos and Hosea" or "Psalms." Then in the winter/spring we can take on something a little more ambitious: "Acts" and "Romans" and "Genesis" are all possibilities. Classes will be held on Wednesday or Thursday evenings, from 7:30-9:00. There are no experts in these classes; we all learn together, using an excellent curriculum that guides us to ask good questions and deepens our understanding and love of the Bible. Please give it some serious thought.


Deacon Pat







Paddling Anyone?


Summer is almost upon us, so the lakes and rivers will be warming up. One of the good things to do in the summer is explore some of the local, or at least not too distant, of those lakes and rivers.  If there are some of you out there who would like to join me now and then, please let me know.


I’d like to do the Racquette Lake to Blue Mountain Lake again. The Cedar River Flow looks interesting, as does Low’s Lake. There are plenty more, some short and some long.


Chris Jones




Recipe of the Month


One of "Our Favorite Recipes"


Here's a recipe from "Our Favorite Recipes", the first St. Stephen's Cookbook. This one is from Margaret Sitts.  Tom Moss was the first rector of St. Stephen's Church, and Joe Sitts was the second.  Margaret was Joe's wife and the mother of their two daughters, Catherine and Karen. From Schenectady, they went first to Warren,  Ohio, and then to Longwood, Florida, where they are doing just fine. Norman Hoffmann has telephone conversations with them on a regular  basis. Anyway, rumor has it that she is an excellent cook.


COCONUT-PINEAPPLE SQUARES                                       Margaret Sitts


1/2 cup soft butter     

1/2 cup sugar

1/4 cup sugar                                             

1 egg, well beaten

1-1/4 cups sifted flour

1 Tbsp. melted butter

1 cup well-drained, crushed pineapple

1-1/2 cups shredded coconut


Mix 1/2 cup butter and 1/4 cup sugar with pastry blender or fork. Add flour and mix until crumbs are formed, and then mix thoroughly, with hands, until soft dough is formed. Press evenly into bottom of 9 x 9 x 2" pan, with about 1/2 inch extending up on sides. Prick bottom  with fork. Bake at 350 for 15 minutes or until crust begins to brown. Remove from oven. Spread pineapple evenly over crust. Add 1/2 cup  sugar to well-beaten egg; beat until blended. Fold in 1 Tbsp. melted butter and coconut. Spread mixture evenly over pineapple. Return to  oven and bake 20 minutes longer or until topping is browned. Cool and cut into 1-1/2 inch squares. Makes 3 dozen.



St. Stephen’s Family Picnic –

June 16th (rain date June 23rd)


[Not to be confused with the St. Stephen's Parish Picnic on June 10].


End-of-school country picnic for church school staff and St. Stephen's children, youth and parents - and anyone else who'd like to come! 


Please sign up at the shop.


2-7 pm at 1497 Putnam Road in Rotterdam home of Jean Hadley (Richey Woodzell's mother and Trudy North's grandmother) and her cats Daphne and Kate. 


There are available:  a fireplace, a charcoal grill, a picnic table, a cooler for drinks and a few lawn chairs.  Feel free to bring whatever other picnic gear you need.


There is an in-ground pool (3' to 9' deep).  Anyone under the age of 16 MUST be accompanied by a parent or guardian INSIDE the pool enclosure.  If the parent leaves, the child must leave the pool area. 


We have swings and a tetherball, with options for volleyball, kickball and games of capture the flag and the like, and whatever other games Trudy cooks up.  Feel free to bring Frisbees or any other yard-games you might want to play and share.  George Woodzell has offered tractor cart rides.


Questions or offers to help?  Get in touch with Richey Woodzell  or Trudy North.







Stephen Sombor & Lucy Clark 6/1

James & Victoria Brooks-McDonald    6/9

Salvatore & Diana Belardo                   6/12

Christopher & Pat Jones                       6/12

K. Scott & Diane Kilbourn                   6/15

Emil & Ann Walraven               6/15

William & Janet Schlansker                   6/19

Michael & Stacy DeBritz                      6/20

Clark & Mildred Gittinger                     6/20

Glenn & Dawn Kaler                            6/20

Belachew & Linda Emaelaf                   6/22

Austin & Martha Spang                        6/22

Jack & Susan Feyrer                            6/22

Jim & Tracy Ormsbee                          6/26

Roy Stratton & Barbara Dobbins          6/27

Bob & Pat Hagen                                 6/28

Gene & Wendy Koreman                     6/29

Robert & Anita McCalley                     7/4

Scott & Amy Soule’                             7/5

Richard & Cherie Downs                      7/8

Robert & Shirley Voelker                     7/10

Charles & Gaye Mertz              7/16

Bill &Julie Steele                                   7/18

Richard & Carolyn Morin                     7/19

Brian & Julie Bailey                              7/21

James & Marilyn Dare              7/28

David & Lorie Kelley                           7/30

Ben & Dawn Tonneau              8/1

Timothy & Susan Olsen                        8/2

Chris Murphy & Kelly Nolan                8/3

Owen & Jean Greenspan                      8/5

William & Karen Smith             8/9

Eber & Mary Davis                              8/9

Charles & Carmella Vedder                  8/13

Ron & Mary Michelson                        8/25

Charles & Deborah Trawick                 8/25

Bill & Joanne Frank                              8/26

David & Suzanne Taylor                       8/28

Tom & Kathy Miller                             8/31







Robert Manor                             6/1

Bill Frank                                    6/1

Robert Voelker                           6/2

Chloe Tonneau                            6/2

David Caruso                              6/4

June Hatlee                                  6/5

Ellen Ormsbee                             6/5

Barbara Adams                           6/7

Edith Lundquist                            6/8

Joseph Beardsley                         6/10

JP Murphy-Nolan                        6/11

Phoebe Redmond                        6/12

Charles Mertz                              6/13

Stephen Gray                              6/14

Bonita Bailey                               6/14

Madeline Olberg                          6/14

Carsten Renken                           6/14

Josephine Jones                           6/18

Karen Smith                                6/18

Alfred Lowe                                6/20

Earl Slanker                                 6/20

Britta Kilbourn                             6/22

Joseph Tonneau                           6/22

Chris Murphy                              6/23

Ann Walraven                             6/25

Darcy Pratt                                  6/25

Salvatore Belardo                        6/27

Jack Luczka                                6/27

Charles Trawick                          6/30

Laura Davis                                 6/30

Florence Walker                          7/1

Patrick Trant                               7/1

Carrie Trant                                 7/2

J. Keith Nelson                            7/3

Everett Schierenbeck                   7/8

Joan Moss                                   7/9

Dawn Tonneau                            7/9

Marian Sevinsky                          7/9

Mary Davis                                 7/9

Doreen May                                7/10

Judith Versocki                            7/10

Gillian Woodcock                        7/12

James Brooks-McDonald            7/13

Andrea Worthington                    7/15

William Smith                              7/15

Michael Bishop                            7/16

Austin Spang                               7/16

Gaye Mertz                                 7/16

Jean Versocki                              7/17

Julie Steele                                  7/19

Christopher Jones                        7/21

Oto Jones                                    7/25

George Woodzell                        7/25

Garret Pierce                               7/26

Ryan Huneau                               7/28

Connor Wolff                              7/29

Craig Marshall                             7/29

Logan Phillips                              7/29

Molly Ormsbee                           7/31

Kieran Templeton                        8/1

Cynthia Reedy                             8/5

Peter Sombor                              8/5

Pauline Holmes                            8/6

Robert Chapman                         8/6

Suzanne Taylor                            8/7

Sydney Bailey                              8/7

Lynn Ann Kelly                           8/7

Nolan Galica                               8/11

Robert Petito                               8/12

Julia Smith                                   8/14

John Goldthwaite                         8/15

Yvonne Masse                            8/15

Daniel Emaelaf                             8/16

Mildred Santer                            8/18

Elizabeth Dipley                           8/19

Angela Strong                              8/19

Stacy DeBritz                              8/20

Emily Mertz                                 8/20

David Dare                                  8/22

Melinda Renken                          8/23

Daniel Koch                                8/24

Richey Woodzell                         8/26

Clark Whitney                             8/28

Glenn Kaler                                 8/29

Wendy Koreman                         8/29

Mary Whitney                             8/30



* If a birthday or anniversary is missing or incorrect for you or anyone in your family, please contact the office (346-6241).