December, 2015


Christmas services
Christmas Creche
Advent Wreath
Fr. James
CRTC Award
Child care
Straw for Creches
St Nicolas Day
St. Stephen, Martyr
Caroling Party
Book Club
ERD: The Cow!
Community Dinner
Clothing Swap
The Shop
Adult Education
St. Stephen's


Advent begins on Sunday, November 29th.  It is a time to prepare for Christ's birth as well as for His second coming to judge the world.  It is a time of watching and waiting and great expectation.  Purple, the color of thoughtfulness and penitence, is the color of the season.  The Greek letters, Alpha (the first of the alphabet) and Omega (the last letter) combine to make the symbol for this season of the year signifying that God is Eternal -- the beginning and the end.  Come and worship during Advent in joyful anticipation of the birth of our Lord.

Christmas Services

4:00 p.m.  Family Eucharist
7:30 p.m.  Festive Candlelight Eucharist
10:00 a.m.  Eucharist

SUNDAY December 27th
8:00 a.m.  Eucharist
10:15 a.m. Choral Eucharist

Friday, New Year's Day
10:00 a.m.  Eucharist
January 10th
8:00 a.m.  Eucharist
10:15 a.m. Choral Eucharist

The Christmas Crèche

The Christmas crèche—also known as a Nativity or manger scene—is more than a decoration. For many, displaying a Christmas crèche is a way to focus on the real meaning of the holiday. The traditional crèche figures are drawn from the accounts of Jesus' birth in the Gospels of Matthew and Luke. There are many ways and variations to display a Christmas crèche. Feel free to adapt these basic steps.

First Sunday in Advent:
Set the basic scene. Traditionally, most people begin with the stable, or something which resembles the rough Bethlehem setting of the Nativity. Put shepherds in the fields. Place the figures representing shepherds, their flocks of sheep and their sheepdog near the stable but not yet surrounding the manger. Use a green cloth to represent the fields, or unroll sheets of absorbent cotton to represent snowdrifts—not meteorologically accurate, but traditional.

Second Sunday in Advent:
Add the figures of Mary and Joseph and the ox and donkey who share their shelter. Display the manger, filled with a bit of straw (from the bags of straw) if you like, topped with a star ornament or Christmas light, but don't place the Baby yet.

Third Sunday in Advent:
Launch the Magi on their journey. At a distance from the stable, set the figures representing the Magi—also known as the Wise Men or the Three Kings—along with their camels and retinue of servants.

Christmas Eve:
Add the Bambino. On Christmas Eve, place the figure representing the Christ Child in the manger. Top the stable with an angel figurcrechee. Bring the shepherds and their animals in around the Holy Family. Display and enjoy your Christmas crèche through January 6. On Christmas Eve, begin moving the Magi figures closer to the stable, advancing them a little each day for the twelve days of Christmas.

By January 6, the traditional Feast of the Epiphany, the Three Kings should be gathered by the manger to offer their gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh.

Tips & Warnings
You don't need to limit yourself to traditional figures. The crèche custom in many countries has grown to include all kinds of people who might have been present in Bethlehem on that first Christmas Eve. In some Nativity scenes, the Christ Child and the manger are one inseparable piece. If you have one of these figures, keep the whole piece out of sight until Christmas Eve.

The Advent Wreath

Pre-Christian peoples who lived far north and who suffered the archetypal loss of life and light with the disappearance of the sun had a way of wooing back life and hope.

'Primitives' do not separate the natural phenomena from their religious or mystical yearning, so nature and mystery remained combined.  As the days grew shorter and colder and the sun threatened to abandon the earth, these ancient people suffered the sort of guilt and separation anxiety which we also know.

Their solution was to bring all ordinary action and daily routiAdvent Wreathne to a halt.  They gave in to the nature of winter, came away from their carts and fields and put away their tools.  They removed the wheels from their carts and wagons, festooned them with greens and lights and brought them indoors to hang in their halls.

They brought the wheels indoors as a sign of a different time, a time to stop and turn inward.  They engaged the feelings of cold and fear and loss. Slowly....slowly....they wooed the sun  god back.  And light followed darkness. Morning came earlier.  The festivals announced the return of hope after primal darkness.

Christians have developed a tradition of the Advent wreath to help us take time out from our busy Christmas preparations and to open our hearts to Jesus.

The circular form of the wreath, like God's love, is never-ending.  The greenery that covers it reminds us of everlasting life and hope because evergreen trees are green even in the midst of winter.

The candles are symbols of the light God brings us.  Three of them are purple, the royal color for the new King.  The fourth candle is pink and is lit on the Third Sunday of Advent when we celebrate with special joy.  Some people light a white candle, the Christ candle, in the center of the wreath on Christmas day.

A "Simple Family Advent Service" for each Sunday in Advent is available on the welcome table in the parish hall.

From the Rector

Dear Friends,

As I write this message, the last of the dressing has been eaten, the rest of the turkey will have to be frozen since another turkey sandwich is out of the question.  The busiest shopping day of the year has ushered in another shopping season.  Christmas carols are heard in the stores, on the radio, and in just about every other commercial on television.  And yet, it is four weeks before Christmas.  The rush has not begun.  We are between holidays.  Very soon Christmas break will be here, and then we will be doing that last minute shopping, addressing cards, wrapping presents, and rehearsing.  But, for the time being, we are resting, waiting.

God's people have always been a waiting people, waiting and watching.  Often we waitJames, not knowing exactly what to expect, hoping for something to happen, hoping for someone to come: a letter in the mail, a visitor, our number in the lottery.

God's people are a waiting people.  But waiting is difficult: in the surgical waiting room - awaiting a word; in a long line at the bank, in an airport.  Have you ever noticed the variety in the manner of people's waiting?  Some are the staunch kind who wait with a sure and certain hope. Other sit on the edge of their seats in anxious fear.  You can tell a lot about a person by the way he or she waits.

But waiting is hard.  We often become impatient and thereby miss the mighty movement and redemptive voice of God. Sometimes our impatient waiting causes us to miss out on the joy of that for which we are waiting.

The season of Advent, which we began November 29th, evokes the emotions of anticipation in Christians.  It captures the ancient yearning for the Messiah that was so much a part of the history of the Hebrew nation.  Advent comes in the part of the year when the days grow shorter and shorter, when we feel surrounded by darkness, and when our need to look forward and to hope becomes especially intense.  It is an in-between season of waiting and of watchful preparation.  But there is a great danger in waiting for the Lord's Coming with impatience and anxious fear.  This Advent season could be nothing more than a busy, expensive holiday in which we burn up our emotions and become tired of Christmas weeks before it comes.

Take some time away from that busy schedule, slow down.  Let's take some time this Advent to make ourselves ready, to allow Christ to act upon us; to feel His penetrating power deep within us, enabling us to be ignited from within, creating the warmth that will give the glow of Jesus in us, a glow that will allow others to see that Christ has come and that He is coming again.

CRTC Community Service Award
Reported by Miranda Rand

(Miranda was recently honored by CRTC for her contributions to the community)

I have been involved with the Capital Region Theological Center since its inception – anawardd for the past 6+ years have served on their Education Committee, reviewing events courses and seminars, seeking excellence in the spiritual and theological realm in terms of speakers and topics. The organization holds a special place in my heart – it encompasses everything I hold dear – quality continuing education, dynamic leadership, a true understanding of what it means to be ecumenical.

This year CRTC chose to honor two people who have supported their programs and helped promote their continued existence. I was one of those recipients. The handsome award was for community service. Sister Kitty Hanley of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Albany’s St. Bernard’s College was the other. Each of us was introduced by a person who knew us well and respected our work.

Laurie Cooper, the CRTC Congregational Resource Manager, a good friend and fellow Christian Educator introduced me. Here’s some of what she said.

Miranda Rand has been a friend and colleague for many years. When I learned she had been chosen as one of this year’s recipients of the Community Service award, I jumped at the opportunity to introduce her to you, just as I know this room is filled with others who would also treasure the chance to recognize this special woman – who has given of herself with grace, patience and a sense of calling.

Service to her community has been an extension of Miranda’s character, not the building of a resume or bucket list. She shared with me that she works in her own community to try to make a difference, to make the world a little better; for ways to help the less fortunate and to quote one of her friends, “making a difference in lives that surely resonate.”

Miranda always manages to find the joy and grace in experiences with the people she meets and in the places she finds herself.

Humility is a virtue we don’t see often enough in this world. To be truly modest and unwilling to draw attention to your own achievements is a worthy goal, made even more challenging when the list of good deeds becomes lengthy, and impact on lives, uncountable.

Queen Elizabeth once said: “The true measure of all our actions is how long the good in them lasts.”

Such is the work of Miranda Rand. Changing lives and doing so when (you think) no one is watching –speaks to her intent and passion as she goes about doing her part in this world. We are humbled.

Congratulations, Miranda!

(Thank you to Father James, Deacon Pat, Chris Jones, George and Richey Woodzell who sat at the table sponsored by St. Stephen’s Episcopal Church to support my honoring by CRTC.)

Child Care Christmas Eve

The nursery will be open at the 4:00 p.m. service.  Toddlers are invited to share the church service experience with their families, but it can be a long time for some to be still.

Cleaning And Greening Of The Church

Help prepare the church for Christmas. On Sunday morning, December 20th, after the 10:15 Eucharist we will meet in the church to hang the greens, and generally prepare the church for our celebration of Christ's birth.

Gathering Straws

A tradition at Saint Stephen’s is the "Gathering Straws" to soften the waiting manger bed in your household crèche.  It is just helpful in reminding children about the season of Advent.  For every good deed a straw is placed in the manger as a graphic sign of growth and preparation for the Christ Child we await.  On Christmas Eve, the little manger, now soft with straw, is brought in procession to the waiting stable where the figure of the Child is placed during the night.

Small bags of straw can be found on a table in the Parish Hall Extension

St. Nicholas Day Worship

On the Sunday, December 6th, St. Nicholas Day, the children attending the liturgy are invited to leave a shoe at the altar after the children’s sermon on St. Nicholas. When the students come back from class, they can recover their shoe and find a them filled with treats - including gold-wrapped chocolate coins, according to the legend

Saint Stephen, Deacon and Martyr

The patron saint of our parish is St. Stephen whose life we will celebrate St. Stephen Iconon Sunday, December 27th at the 8:00 am Eucharist and at the festive Eucharist at 10:15am.

Stephen was called one of the "seven men of good repute, full of the Spirit and of wisdom" (Acts 6:3).  He was chosen by the apostles to relieve them of the administrative burden of "serving tables and caring for the widows." This became what the Church traditionally considers to be the work and ministry of a deacon.

Stephen's activities involved more than simply "serving tables" for the Acts of the Apostles speaks of his preaching and performing many miracles.  These activities led him into conflict with some of the Jews, who accused him of blasphemy, and brought him before the Sanhedrin.  His powerful sermon before the Council is recorded in the seventh chapter of Acts.  His denunciation of the Sanhedrin so enraged its members that, without a trial, they dragged him out of the city and stoned him to death.

Saul, later called Paul, stood by, consenting to Stephen's death, but Stephen's example of steadfast faith in Jesus, and of intercession for his persecutors, was to find fruit in the mission and witness of Paul after his conversion.  The Christian community in Jerusalem, taking fright at the hostility of the Judean authorities, was scattered; so that for the first time the Gospel of Christ began to spread beyond Jerusalem.

Come celebrate our patron saint on Sunday!

Family Christmas Caroling and Potluck Dinner

Saturday, December 19, 4:00 – 8:00 PMcaroling

Come join us as we sing carols for the residents of Baptist Health Nursing & Rehabilitation Center on Route 50 in Scotia.  Song sheets will be provided, and all ages are welcome.  For those who wish to carpool, meet at St. Stephen’s by 3:30 PM; otherwise meet us at the Center by 4 PM.

Afterward, we will return to the parish hall for a potluck dinner, followed by entertainment.  Look for more details in the weekly letter and the bulletin. 

If you’d like to help with coordinating the potluck or activities afterward (possibly a movie), please get in touch with Richey Woodzell.

Book Club

St. Stephen’s Book Club meets on the second Tuesday of the month at 7:00 PM in theYouth Lounge.  Come join us! The book list for 2015-16 is:books

Dec. 8              "Can't We Talk About Something More Pleasant?" by Roz Chast
Jan. 12             "Rosie Project" by Graeme Simsion
Feb. 9              "Station Eleven" by Emily St. John Mandel
March 8           "Yes, Please!" By Amy Pohler
April 12           "Orphan Train" by Christina Baker Kline
May 10            "Still Life With Bread Crumbs" by Anna Quindlen
June 14            "Spring Chicken: Stay Young Forever or Die Trying" by Bill Gifford

Episcopal Church Women (ECW)

Episcopal Church Women (ECW) meet usually on the fourth Tuesday of the month at 7:00 in the Conference Room.  All women are cordially invited to attend.   This year’s activities so far:

  • On November 24 we hosted the monthly MoonCatchers Sewing Bee in the parish hall.
  • Advent outreach – we ask the parish to help raise money for the work of Episcopal Relief & Development to purchase a cow for a family, as well as to donate postage stamps for Christmas cards for those in the Schenectady County Jail.  See Deacon Jones’ article on outreach for the jail.
  • Sat. Dec. 19, 4-8 PM – Family Christmas caroling at the Baptist Home on Route 50, followed by a potluck dinner and entertainment at the church afterward.   We need a volunteer to coordinate the dinner.  We are considering showing a movie appropriate for children and this time of the year; if you have a suggestion, let us know.
  • Sat. Jan. 16 - Clothing swap event, with leftover clothes donated to Bethesda House’s clothing room, coordinated by Claudia Jakubowski.  Look for details in the weekly emails and bulletins.
  • A Saturday in February - hosting a Healing a Woman’s Soul reunion, providing breakfast and lunch for domestic violence victims.
  • A Sunday in April - Ladies’ Luncheon, coordinated by Carole Merrill-Mazurek and Tracy Ormsbee.
  • April 26 or May 24 – an evening of chair yoga, led by Nancy Tobiessen.

Still to be decided are a Lenten outreach project, planning and carrying out the Seder supper the Wednesday before Easter, attending a matinee, or any other ideas for fellowship or service to the parish or community that you might have.

If you would like to be take part in any of these activities, or have any suggestions, please get in contact with Liz Varnoor Richey Woodzell.

Episcopal Relief and Development (ERD)

Global Outreach During Advent  In an effort to help fight hungercow, poverty and disease, the ECW at St. Stephen’s has decided to raise $630 to purchase a cow for a needy family through the Episcopal Relief & Development’s program Gifts for Life.  The gift of a milk-producing cow will not only supply nourishment, including much-needed protein and vitamins, it will enable families to sell surplus milk in the marketplace and better provide for their children.  Here we can buy milk at $3 per gallon; as a comparison, $630 is the equivalent of 210 gallons of milk.  Please consider donating a few gallons, and help to fill our milk can by Christmas!  Note:  All donations to Episcopal Relief and Development before December 31 will be matched.

Potluck Community Dinner

Dear friends of Campus Protestant Ministries of Union College,

Coming up soon, on Monday December 7, is our annual Potluck Community Dinner with International Students.flyer You're invited. We hope you'll join us, and bring your family and friends.

What time? 6 PM! Where? Old Chapel (on the Union College Campus).
To see maps of the campus, click here:

What should you bring? LARGE dishes to share. At this meal it's especially appropriate to bring family thanksgiving recipes. Since some of the students are vegetarian, please label any vegetarian dishes as such. 

Why do we do this? This is during the break between semesters, when only international students are left on campus and there are no food services available. The students enjoy our home-cooked food, and we enjoy hearing about their lives.

RSVP's are definitely appreciated, though not required. Questions and RSVP's by replying to this email, or to Viki Brooks, Campus Protestant Minister

Hope you'll join us!

Abby Norton-Levering
Ministries Coordinator, Regional Synod of Albany, 1790 Grand Blvd, Schenectady NY 12309

We are "in this together...for good" Acts 1:14

Questions? See George Woodzell.

St. Stephen's Clothing Swap

St. Stephen's is holding its first clothing swap on Saturday, January 16th from 10:00 am to 12:00 pm.  Light refreshments will be served.  Many of you may be asking yourselves, “What is a clothing swap?”  Well, a clothing swap is a great way to recycle and reuse clothing and to save money.  However, there are some “rules” that help make a swap successful.

  1. Each person who is participating should be bring in a minimum 3 items of clothing, accessories, jewelry, shoes etc. and a maximum of 10.  Please do not clean out your closet and bring all clothing items that you don't want.  
  2. And, each person only takes home the number of items that they have brought to the swap.  For example, if you brought 4 items, you leave with 4 items.  This ensures that everyone leaves with something.
  3. We will need a variety of sizes.
  4. All clothes should be current, in good condition and washed.
  5. All leftover items will be donated to Bethesda House.

So please start thinking of items that you want to swap.  I will start the collection process in the beginning of January.  Any questions, email me.

The St. Stephen's Web Site

We have a website to be a window to the world, so that people who are looking for a church home will find us and get a reasWeb pageonable view of who we are.  We also provide our members with useful information, such as our on-line directory, calendar, and newsletter (The Messenger).

Over the past year, we have averaged about 800 visits per month. Our best month was October with 1200 visits. Most of our visitors come from Windows computers (53%), but Macintosh (27%) and Linux (15%) users also visit. When browsers find us, most come from Google and Safari.

I have been doing this website for a long time, probably twenty years or so. A short course in “Frontpage” at the college helped me get started. I currently use  Adobe “Dreamweaver” to generate the code which browsers such as Intenet Explorer use to create the pages you see on your computer screens. Although I don’t actually write HTML, I sometimes have to look at and correct the HTML code. If you have comments or corrections about what’s on the website, I’d like to hear them. If you have a personal website, I would like to list it on the “links” page.

Chris Joneds

The Shop at St. Stephen's

We are your one stop shopping center for all your gift items.  The Shop is BURSTING with cards, candles and unusual decorations. The Episcocats and Episcodog calendars continue to be a much sought after item.  How about a Christmas tote?  you can stuff it with matching mugs, pens and bookmarks, a really nice gift. We have a "Multitude of Mugs" all boxed and ready to give. A few have recipes for "mug baking" for the person that needs a single serving of Brownies or Coffee cake.  How about a cat or dog mug to give with your Furry Friends calendar? A nice combo.   A variety of Creche's and Holy Family settings are also available.  And for the "hard to buy for person" on your list we have lovely Ikon's all reasonably priced.  And the Holidays wouldn't be complete without a little BLING, prepare to be dazzled by our rings, necklaces, and bracelets.  Stop by and say hello to Claudia, Louise, June and Marilyn.  And to all of you the Shop staff sends you many Blessings at this Holy season and thanks for your continued support.

Every Member CanvassBill

The Every Member Canvass for pledges in 2016 is quickly drawing to a close.  Ifyou havenot returned your pledge cards to the parish office, please place them in the offering plate during the Eucharist on any Sunday or please send them to the church office as soon as possible.

So far we have received 55 pledges for approximately $114,340.  The parish extends its gratitude to those who have worked so diligently on the canvas, especially to Bill Frank who served as Chairperson.

Christian Education

Miranda Rand, Education Director, 393-5047,

December equals Advent, Christmas, costumes, bible stories, pageants, processions, the crèche on the altar steps, and the arrival of the Christ Child; angels, shepherds, sheep, decorations, and glorious music. It also equals stress for parents juggling the ordinary every-day stuff with the extraordinary – choosing and decorating a tree; decorating the house, Christmas plays and programs at school, and participation in church school programs on Sunday mornings.

This past Sunday (November 22 – Christ the King Sunday in the lectionary cycle); students in the Children of the Holy Spirit class studied about Christ appearing before Pontius Pilate and chose roles for the Christmas program.  Students in the Sunday Friends class discussed their involvement in the Christmas program and voted overwhelmingly to participate. We will work together to choose an age-appropriate script that requires a minimum of memorization. 

Advent 1 - November 29
Children of the Holy Spirit: Continue to choose roles for the December 20 presentation and start   rehearsals. Modified classroom learning session.
Sunday Friends: Choose a script and discuss the presentation

Advent 2 - December 6
Children of the Holy Spirit: Learn assigned/chosen parts; choose costumes, modified classroom learning session.
Sunday Friends: Refine and practice chosen script, design props

Advent 3 - December 13:
Children of the Holy Spirit:  Classroom rehearsal with props, dress rehearsal in the sanctuary after 10:15 Eucharist (approx. 11:30-12:00)
Sunday Friends:  Rehearse script in the sanctuary with props after 10:15 Eucharist, assist as needed with Children of the Holy Spirit class rehearsal

Saturday, December 19:
Full dress rehearsal for all students, practice processional. Pizza party to follow.  11:00am to 12:30pm (approx.)

Advent 4, December 20:
All students’ process in costume with the choir, Christmas presentations will take the place of the sermon

Christmas Eve - December 24:
Children of the Holy Spirit
students process with the choir to place Holy Family and related figures in the crèche.  4:00pm Family Service.

Adult Education

Wednesday Evening Bible Study:
Discovering the Bible:  An Introduction to the Old and New Testaments

December 9 - Getting Acquainted
December 16 - The Old Testament
December 23 - The New Testament
December 30 - Survival, Spread, and Influence

Classes are held on Wednesday evenings from 7:30 to 9:00 in the Conference room.  If you would like to attend these classes please email Fr. James.

Sunday Morning Adult Education:
The Power of Myth

This course will explore how the themes and symbols of ancient myths continue to bring meaning to birth, death, love, and war. From stories of the gods and goddesses of ancient Greece and Rome to traditions of Buddhism, Hinduism and Christianity, a broad array of themes are considered that together identify the universality of human experience across time and culture.

Joseph Campbell was a preeminent scholar, writer, and teacher and had a profound influence on millions of people--including Star Wars creator George Lucas. To Campbell, mythology was the "song of the universe, the music of the spheres." With Bill Moyers, one of America’s most prominent journalists, as his thoughtful and engaging interviewer, The Power of Myth touches on subjects from modern marriage to virgin births, from Jesus to John Lennon, offering a brilliant combination of intelligence and wit.

Dec. 6 & 13  The Message of the Myth: Campbell compares creation stories (Genesis, other religions). And how we are stuck with myths that may not meet our needs.

Dec. 20 & Jan. 3  The First Storytellers: Discusses the importance of accepting death as rebirth as in the story of Christ or the myth of the buffalo, the rite of passage in primitive societies, the role of mystical Shamans, and the decline of ritual in today's society.

Classes are held on Sunday Mornings from 9-10 in the Conference Room.

Tuesaday mornings, 10:30 – noon in the Conference Room
The Meaning of Life:
Perspectives from the World’s Great Intellectual Traditions
A Seminar of Theological Reflection on Philosophy & Religion in the West & East

December 1               Confucius - Order in the Cosmos and in Life
December 8               Daodejing - The Dao of Life and Spontaneity
December 15             Daodejing - The Best Life Is a Simple Life
December 22             Daodejing - Subtlety and Paradox

December, 2015

Not a final schedule. Tune in Sunday mornings for the latest information in the announcements and the bulletin.

Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat

9:00 Morning Prayer 
10:30 Seminar

8:30 Osteo Exercise
9:00 Morning Prayer
10:00 Communion & Healing
7:30 Bible Study
7:30 NO Bells
9:00 Morning Prayer
10:00 Office

7:30 Choir

8:30 Osteo Exercise 
9:00 Morning Prayer
9:00 Morning Prayer

5:00 Labyrinth

6 Advent 2
7:30 Morning prayer 
8:00 Communion
9:30 Nursery Care 
9:00 Adult Education
7:30 Choir rehearsal
10:15 Communion&Kids Class
11:30 Kids Class
11:30 The Band

8:30 Osteo Exercise 
9:00 Morning Prayer
10:00 Office

9:00 Morning Prayer 
10:30 Seminar

7:00 Book Club
8:30 Osteo Exercise
9:00 Morning Prayer
10:00 Communion & Healing
7:30 Bible Study
7:30 Bells
9:00 Morning Prayer
10:00 Office

7:30 Choir
8:30 Osteo Exercise 
9:00 Morning Prayer
9:00 Morning Prayer
13 Advent 3
7:30 Morning prayer 
8:00 Communion
9:30 Nursery Care 
9:00 Adult Education
7:30 Choir rehearsal
10:15 Communion&Kids Class
11:30 Kids Class
11:30: The Band
8:30 Osteo Exercise 
9:00 Morning Prayer
7:30 Vestry

9:00 Morning Prayer 
10:30 Seminar
8:30 Osteo Exercise
9:00 Morning Prayer
10:00 Communion & Healing

7:30 Bible Study
7:30 Bells
9:00 Morning Prayer
10:00 Office

7:30 Choir
8:30 Osteo Exercise 
9:00 Morning Prayer
9:00 Morning Prayer

4:00 Caroling Party
20 Advent 4
7:30 Morning prayer 
8:00 Communion
9:30 Nursery Care  
9:00 Adult Education
7:30 Choir rehearsal
10:15 Communion& Kids Performance
11:30: The Band
8:30 Osteo Exercise 
9:00 Morning Prayer
10:00 Parish Council
9:00 Morning Prayer 
10:30 Seminar

8:30 Osteo Exercise
9:00 Morning Prayer
10:00 Communion & Healing

9:00 Morning Prayer

4:00 Family Christmas Service

7:30 Candlelight Service
25 Christmas
9:00 Morning Prayer

10:00 Christmas Communion
9:00 Morning Prayer
27 St. Stephen's Day
7:30 Morning prayer 
8:00 Communion
9:30 Nursery Care 
9:00 Adult Education
7:30 Choir rehearsal
10:15 Communion
11:30 Kid's Class
8:30 Osteo Exercise 
9:00 Morning Prayer
10:00 Office
9:00 Morning Prayer 
10:30 Seminar
8:30 Osteo Exercise
9:00 Morning Prayer
10:00 Communion & Healing

7:30 Bible Study
7:230 Bells
9:00 Morning Prayer
10:00 Office

7:30 Choir


Birthdays in December, parish records
5 Louise Peake
7 Mildred Gittinger 
8 Vicki Hoshko 
9 Jim Ormsbee 
14 Evan Fronk  
20 Shirley Gretz
21 Jim Syta  
25 Robert Olberg  
27 Ronald Michelson
31 Denise Crates

Baptismal dates in December, parish records
4 Jean Versocki  
6 Karen Holcombe 
9 James McDonald 
24 George Woodzell  
26 Suzanne Taylor  
28 Louise Peake
31 Robert Bailey
31 Salvatore Belardo 
31 Marilyn Causey 
31 Susan Feyrer 
31 Jack Feyrer 
31 Marilyn Humphrey 
31 Sara Palko
31 Linda Perregaux  
31 Paul Pratico 
31 Marti Spang 
31 Liz Stevens 
31 Barbara Dobbins Stratton
31 Bob Strong 
31 Sidney Woodcock 
31 Gillian Woodcock

Wedding anniversaries in December, parish records
10 Robert Olberg & Andrea Worthington 
22 Gerald Perregaux & Linda Perregaux  

St. Stephen's Episcopal Church

Church Staff
The Rev. Dr. James R. McDonald, Rector,
The Rev. Patricia L. Jones, Deacon,
Miranda Rand, Christian Education Director,
Susan Lohnas, Organist,
Douglas Lohnas, Choir Director,
Lisa Zebrowski, Nursery Manager,
Laura Bynon and Chris Quinn, Nursery School
Joe and Donna White, Custodians

The Vestry
Sr. Warden, Erin Cohen
Jr. Warden, Brian Riordon
Clerk, Tracy Ormsbee
Treasurer, Denise Crates

Class of 2015:
Jack Feyrer
Bill Frank
Jim Syta

Class of 2016:

Travis Reedy 

Class of 2017

Joanne Frank
Peter Nelson
Elissa Prout

The Church Office
Our office is located at 1229 Baker Avenue. 
The telephone number is (518) 346-6241.
If we are unable to answer your call, please leave a message.
We will call you back as soon as possible. 
The Rector's email is:
Our website is
Facebook Page:
The Messenger is published September - June. 
Please submit articles to editor Chris Jones by the 25th of the Month before.