September, 2017

From the RectorJames

Dear Parish Friends,

Summer, for me, is for dreaming.  As I lay in my hammock, I dreamt of the future; I thought in terms of what could happen in this congregation. Dreams raise questions such as: where do we want to go? and how do we get there? Dreams are built upon a hope in things getting better.

The Bible is full of dreamers. Think of Moses and Jacob and Jeremiah, David, Rachael, Mary. The Bible is not full of people who fantasize. Fantasies and dreams are quite different. Fantasies are divorced from the facts of life, from truth, and from reality. Dreams are actually based on the dreamer's understanding of his or her environment, but dreams move forward by a judicious selection and reshaping of that environment. Fantasies are stagnant. Examples of fantasies are the belief in unicorns and gods from outer-space coming in prehistoric times, or racial supremacy. Fantasy fails to live in the real world, and is more a rejection of the world. Fantasy is an escape; dreaming is an entrance headlong into the world as it is, dreaming is a way to change that world, and through reasoning judgement, dreaming is a way of systematic planning. Step one...., step two...., step three.....

This summer we have heard many lessons from Jeremiah; how he dreamed of a better time for his people. During his time Israel was in a dismal situation. Jerusalem was under siege by hostile armies; the vast majority of the country was already occupied. Jeremiah knew that it was only a matter of time before Jerusalem would be desolated. Jeremiah had urged the king to surrender so Jerusalem would be saved from the inevitable sacking.  The king responded by throwing Jeremiah in prison for treason. Think of what it must have been like to have been living in Jerusalem in those days: food is running out, you and your family will be killed any day, or at best, you will be chained and marched off to distant Babylon, your city leveled for good. In the midst of this Jeremiah begins to dream. He has a vision of a restored Israel. Step one was the return of the exiles from Babylon, step two was the revitalization of faith in the one God. This is no fantasy; this is solid dreaming.

Dreams are the stuff of faith. If you don't have faith, you won't dream much either, though you may fantasize a lot. Dreaming is related to faith because faith is a deep commitment to the goodness of God, and to the goodness of God's creation - to the good in the people around us, and to the goodness that is in ourselves. Religious faith allows us to dream. Through faith we gain insight into the fact that the entire universe and the people in it all operate on a basic underlying principle, the principle of goodness and love.

One of the reasons that we Episcopalians go to church is because it gives us good and beautiful material for dreaming, and that is what we mean by 'growing in faith'. When we hear the words of the Gospel story each week, the story of our Lord, we don't simply remember a fine man who lived long ago, we hear about Christ's life so that we can dream about what we are supposed to be: Christ-like. The Gospel allows us to dream about imitating Christ.

As we approach a new school year, we enter into a new step of our dreams. All the details of this next step are not clear. We will need to be working together to understand it; we will need to pray together to achieve it. I hope you will be a part of our dreaming.

James+

Mark your calendar!

Choir rehearsals begin Thursday, Sept. 7
Vestry (open to all) Monday, Sept. 11, 7:30 pm
First Bell Choir rehearsal Wednesday Sept. 13
Back to 8:00 & 10:00 services
Parish Faire after both services
Sunday Sept. 17
Adult education classes start
Children's Education classes start
Move tag sale items up from the basement
Sunday Sept. 24
Organize Tag Sale items Wednesday, Sept. 27
Tag Sale Saturday Sept. 30
Blessing of the Animals Sunday Oct. 1, 1:00 pm
Listening for God (Tracy Ormsbee) Saturday, Oct. 7, 10:30 am
Inquirers' classes begin Sunday, Oct. 8, noon
Quilting group resumes Saturday Oct.14

Blessing of the Animals and St. Francis of Assisi

On October 4th we celebrate the life and work of St. Francis. He is probably better known for preaching to birds than for the poverty he embraced in his passion to be like Christ. Yet, Francis’ love of God’s creation has given his statue a place in many church and home gardens.blessing of animals

No mere nature lover, Francis saw in nature’s paradoxes and mysteries a revelation of the presence of God. He marveled at the simplicity and obedience of the birds, fishes, rabbits, doves, the falcon who wakened him for Matins, the famous wolf of Gubbio who gave his pledge of peace to Francis and kept it.

Because of St. Francis’ connection to God’s creation, and especially to animals, a tradition arose in England whereby the parish priest would bless the villagers’ animals on St. Francis’ Day, Oct. 4. So we will celebrate St. Francis Day on the closest Sunday, October 1st  at 1:00pm.

Here’s how it will work:

On October 1st the congregation and any animals (on leashes!) will gather on the front lawn of the church. WE WILL REMAIN OUTSIDE DURING THE ENTIRE SERVICE. The rector will begin a brief worship service and then will bless each animal saying: “O God, who has made all things for yourself, bless, we pray you, this animal; that it may be a source of love and joy to those with whom it dwells.”

It’s quite a sight!

Hurricane Harvey 2017: What can I do to help?

The following is copied from the ERD (Episcopal Relief and Development) website. You can read the whole article and much more at http://www.episcopalrelief.org/stories/hurricane-harvey-2017-what-can-i-do-to-help

Financial Support

Now is the time to offer financial support. Contributing to Episcopal Relief & Development will ensure that we have enough resources to support the work of our church partners as they serve the most vulnerable in their communities.  They are best positioned to assess needs and timing for response efforts.

One of the immediate ways Episcopal Relief & Defloodvelopment and our partners help individuals is by handing out gift cards to local stores so that people can choose what they need the most. It not only affords people dignity it also helps stimulate the local economy, which needs to recover post-disaster. Learn about the other ways we assist during the three R’s of disaster here.

Volunteering

The best approach is to wait until those affected have indicated what kind of support is most needed and whether they are ready to house and utilize volunteers. Inserting ourselves at the appropriate time alleviates additional stress and complications that can actually make things worse. If you think you would like to volunteer please register with Episcopal Relief & Development’s Ready to Serve database. This list of volunteers will be shared with the impacted dioceses once they are ready to use and support volunteers. They will contact you if and when they need help.

Donating Goods

My firm recommendation is DON’T DO IT. I can’t tell you how many piles of discarded clothing I saw in parking lots throughout the Gulf Coast after Hurricane Katrina. After major disasters, diocesan staff have limited capacity to receive, store or distribute donated goods. Here’s a great article about the challenges of communities receiving donated goods: http://www.npr.org/2013/01/09/168946170/thanks-but-no-thanks-when-post-disaster-donations-overwhelm

An effective response requires us to discern what is most helpful and appropriate at any given time. Let’s continue to hold those directly impacted in our hearts and prayers throughout their recovery, long after the media images fade. 

by Rob Radtke, President of Episcopal Relief & Development.

The Deacon’s Bench Pat

In the latest (Sept.-Oct.) issue of “Sojourners,” the editor-in-chief, Jim Wallis, writes the following:

“Several of us have begun observing a day of fasting on the 21st of each month, and we will continue through the end of the 115th Congress in December 2018. We chose the 21st as the day for our fast because it is the day each month by which the average family on the SNAP program (food stamps) has used 90% of its benefits. President Trump’s budget proposal would cut the SNAP program by more than 25% over 10 years, Cutting deeply from a program that already leaves poor working families at risk of hunger for nearly one third of each month will greatly exacerbate the problem, causing more families, including children, to go to bed hungry. 

...On June 21, we (Wallis) wrote: “the biblical prophets remind us that how we treat the most marginal and vulnerable among us is a test of a nation’s moral righteousness--telling kings and rulers that the measure of their governance is the well-being of those most in need.”

As bipartisan Christian leaders, rising above the political debates, we are determined to focus on the biblical mandate to protect the poor and to remind legislators that budgets are moral documents. “Is not this the fast that I choose,” says the prophet Isaiah, “to loose bonds of injustice and untie the cords of the yoke, to set the oppressed free and break every yoke?”

Through the sustained spiritual disciplines of prayer and fasting, we can nourish our action and advocacy, renewing our dedication to speak out clearly and publicly in defense of those who need it most. Jesus reminds all who would name his name, “As you have done to the least of these, you have done to me.”

...And I thought, “I could do this. Better yet, WE could do this.” We at St. Stephen’s are already active participants in the SICM Food Pantry, the summer lunch program, the Heifer Project and other efforts to combat hunger. But fasting, with prayer, reaches us right in our gut, even though we know that we will eat again tomorrow.

At the Parish Faire on September 17th, there will be  a sign-up sheet for those who wish to participate--not for the purpose of competing, but in the spirit of mutual support. And after that, it is up to you and God.

Deacon Pat

Christian Education, Young People

It seems summer has flown by and now it’s time for backpacks and school buses and schedules. Oh my! 

Ms. Lisa will be in the nursery on September 17 but not on September 24 – I will post a notice on the Nursery door and email parents who use it to remind them during the early part of that week. With the exception of that Sunday, Nursery Care will be offered each week from 10:00 until 11:30.

Our two classes: Holy Spirit Kids (Kindergarten to 4th grade) and Sunday Friends (Grade 5-8) will start again on September 24.

The younger ones come out with me after Father James’ Time with the Children and return to the service in time to participate in the Eucharist with their parents. During the time they are in the classroom they will receive instruction, work independently in worksheets that support the Bible story of the day and enjoy a light snack (one cookie and a juice box).  The curriculum follows the lectionary cycle – in general the story of the day is the gospel lesson they hear Deacon Pat read in the service.Education kids

The older students meet after the 10:15 service (stopping in Begley Hall just long enough to gather a snack from the Coffee Hour hosts). We have a new curriculum this year which uses video and a workbook as teaching tools. We will focus on Old Testament heroes and heroines, (lead figures in Old Testament stories). In general our time together is approx. 35 minutes.

I hold “Office Hours” in the Holy Spirit Kids’ classroom (adjacent to the Nursery) on Sunday mornings from 9:50 until 10:10 and am available at any time via phone or email.

I am excited to greet our students again and hear all their stories about how summer was for them!.

Miranda Rand
Christian Education Director
518-393-5047 home (answering machine)
518-229-5105 cell (text or voice mail)
Mirandarand411@gmail.com (email)

Sunday Morning Adult Education:  Christianity & World Religions faiths

There are more than 6,000 religions in the world, most of which are very different from the literate Abrahamic religions (Judaism, Christianity, and Islam) that many people think of when they hear the word religion. In order to make statements or generalizations about religion—the concept of religion, rather than a specific religion or group of religions—we need to engage in a comparative study of religion. The study of religion as a general human phenomenon involves a comparison of all religions in an attempt to discern commonalities, general patterns, and associations with cultural and ecological features. This course is intended to help you better understand your neighbors AND to strengthen your own faith through viewing well-produced videos and participating in constructive conversation.

Sept. 24 – Oct. 15 - Hinduism

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

Wednesday Evening Bible Study:
Intro. to the Old Testament: The Saga of the Israelites

This course is an introduction to the Old Testament and tells the epic story of the Jews and the creation of the world's first and most profoundly influential monotheistic religion. The stories of the patrscrolliarch Abraham, the liberator Moses, the poet-king David and his son Solomon all come to life in the dramatic tale of loss and triumph that shaped humanity's basic moral struggle for more than three millennia.  This an eight-week course beginning Sept. 20th.

If you would like to attend these classes, please email Fr. James james.ross.mcd@gmail.com.

Classes are held on Wednesday Evenings – 7:30-8:30 in the Conference Room.

Tuesday Morning Seminar:

Comparative Religions
A
systematic comparison of the doctrines and practices of the world's religions.

Tree

When does the Jewish Sabbath begin? Who are Vishnu and Shiva? What are Buddhism's Four Noble Truths? What are the Five Pillars of Islam? These questions are more than an academic exercise. Religious belief has been innate to humans everywhere and in every age, from the time of the Neanderthals to the 21st century. It's also one of the strongest motivators of human behavior and has a profound impact on all aspects of our culture—our spiritual beliefs, our rituals, our politics, and the very foundations of our democracy. And it may strengthen your own faith!

Sept. 12 - Religion—Its Meaning and ImportanceHow do we attain the imaginative insider’s perspective when we study other religious traditions, and when we study our own tradition?

Sept. 19 - Facets of Religion—Divinity and Devotion - here is a wide range of conceptions of God, and we will explore some of the most commonly held beliefs.

Sept. 26 - What Was the Axial Age? - The Axial Age refers to the period of time from approximately 800-200 B.C.E., in which unprecedented developments occurred in four separate centers of civilization: West Asia, South Asia, East Asia, and the northeastern Mediterranean.           

Classes are held on Tuesday Mornings from 10:30 to noon in the Conference room.  If you would like to attend these classes, please email Fr. James james.ross.mcd@gmail.com.

Vestry News

Dan Ruscitto

April Notes:   

Buildings Committee Summary:  New (10 years old) ‘Episcopal Church Welcomes You’ sign was stolen. Over-the-Hill Gang (OTHG) put the ‘old’ sign back up on Union Street. OTHG noted that the sign posts are rusted and decaying, however St. Stephens is unable to replace them because the city may not approve of new ones. Fr. James stated that to potentially approve new poles, the city requires the original meeting minutes documenting putting up the signs in the first place. All vestry meeting minutes are archived in the second floor of the office, but finding the relevant minutes would be a time-consuming task. Additional items discussed included: Persian rug on altar needs to be rebound; Interior church walls need repainting; Pipe organ desperately needs maintenance; Fire/smoke alarm system (Simplex Grinnell annual contract $1050.00 in budget); Kitchen hood (maintenance fee is also in budget).

First Friends Committee Summary:  The philosophy of the Nursery School is not Church-centered. St. Stephens had to purchase the school because it was a for-profit operating on church grounds. The school runs smoothly on their own unless there is an issue to bring to the Vestry (e.g., repairs).  Financially, we may get $1000 a year, depending on operations.  Capacity is 14 students per class and the school is currently running at 12 and 13 students per class.  The salary of the Director is tied to the enrollment and the program is competitive with local Pre-K programs. 

Warden’s Report Summary:  Jim Syta is adding meeting minutes to the bulletin board. Jim also took down the loose gutter hanging off of the office over the parking lot because it was unsafe.

May Notes:

Pipe Organ Maintenance Presentation:  Susan Lohnas presented the current state of the organ to the vestry along with several options for required repairs quoted by Rosenberry & Myers: Full ($41,400), Moderate ($25,100), or Minimal ($21,900). Additionally, the organ company quoted $8,100 for tonal improvement by adding 2 more ranks (Octave 4’ & Stopped Flute 8’). Estimated duration of repairs would be 3 months and the piano would be played for services during that time.  The alternative to repairing the pipe organ would be an electronic organ (which is still expensive). The vestry discussed planning a potential fund-raiser (or several) with the goal of raising $41,400 + $8,100; ideally the fundraiser would begin next summer. Jim Syta, Peter Nelson, Mary Alexander, and Liz Varno agreed to create a fundraising task force.

Grounds Committee Summary: Lawn service and leaf collection contract same as 2016.

Buildings Summary: Work identified by OTHG for contractor includes mostly roof-work to the buildings (replacement of slate, removal of “snow catchers”, tuck point stone work, repair gutters).
Additionally, Jim Syta got a quote for automatic door closure & wall dividers for the nave extension rest rooms ($2,400 for doors + labor).

June Notes:

Buildings Committee Summary:  There are bats living in the church bell tower and entering the nave. Fr. James received a quote from Mid-State Industries to replace the roof slate. They agreed to seal any openings that they find when they are already on the roof, however they DO NOT guarantee that they will stop the bat problem. The vestry approved the Mid State Industries bids for the roof work and checking out the bat situation; This maintenance will be paid for using earnings from the endowment ($21,500 total).

OTHG: Removed loose floor tiles in the office and replaced them as a temporary fix. Also repaired leaking copper gutters.

Taskforce – “Pull Out All the Stops”: The campaign for the organ will start at the Annual Meeting in January and the taskforce will discuss fundraising ideas.

Rector’ Report: Nursery school graduation occurred and was a very cute event. Fr. James also read a letter from the Healing a Woman’s Soul group thanking us for our hospitality. Fr. James approved use of the building as a weekly delivery site for Roxbury Farm (Tuesdays through Nov. 21). SICM notified St. Stephens that we will have the first week of summer lunches. The food is brought to the sites and we distribute it out to the kids. In the past, the food has not been the greatest quality and so this year SICM went to Red Rabbit, a firm that specializes in good food that tastes good for kids. Red Rabbit will be using St. Stephen’s kitchen as a distribution point (6-11AM). Fr. James and Denise had the kitchen inspected by the health department and it is now approved for one year. Fr James also reported on the Episcopal Convention; a very short meeting, budget passed without question, and no competition for open positions.

Vestry Meetings will resume on September 11th at 7:30 PM in the conference room.

Dan
Here's Dan, Tammy, Franklin, Harrison, and Theodore. Thanks for writing up the vestry meetings, Dan.

Parish Faireparish faire

Once again we will have the Parish Faire to begin the year. The Faire will take place on September 17th at 9:00 a.m. following the early service and again during the coffee hour following the 10:15 a.m. Eucharist. There will be a table set up for many activities of the parish and a chance to sign up for each. There will be refreshments at 9 a.m., and at 11:30 a.m. 

As we begin a new program year, please think about the way you spend your time. Here are a few simple suggestions which can help to structure our schedule in the months ahead.

  • Make worship a weekly priority.
  • Commit yourself to regular study through numerous church school classes or Bible studies. 
  • Look for opportunities where you can become personally involved in serving others

Becoming A Member of Saint Stephen’s

Inquirers’ classes are a basic four-week course which is held in an informal atmosphere and taught by the rector.  For those who are new to the Episcopal Church, or looking for a new spiritual home, this course will provide an introduction to the Church ‑‑ its history, beliefs, worship, and work in the world.

Or, if you were confirmed earlier in life, and wish to renew your commitment at an adult level, consider this course as a part of your continuing Christian education.  The course is required for all who wish to be confirmed or received into the church.

These classes will be held on Sunday afternoons at noon in the rector’s office beginning October 8th. 
If you would like to attend these classes, please email Fr. James james.ross.mcd@gmail.com.

Allison deKanelCalling all Acolytes!

(Also, all would-be Acolytes.)
Why would you want to be an Acolyte?

Being an Acolyte can be fun, because you get to see what goes on behind-the-scenes on Sunday morning. You get to light candles, and lead processions, and all sorts of other interesting things - try serving at the Maundy Thursday evening service during Holy Week, and you'll see what I mean. (The clergy wash people's feet! We take everything off the altar, and then Fr. James washes it!)

Being an Acolyte can be serious, because you help the Clergy do their jobs, and help the Sunday morning (and holy days) services run smoothly.

Being an Acolyte can actually be - Yes! - a calling, a ministry to serve God and the people of the Church.

If you asked each of the Acolytes at St. Stephen's Church why they want to be an Acolyte, or how they would describe being an Acolyte, you would probably get a different answer from each one of us. One of the reasons I like being an Acolyte is because - believe it or not - when I was a little girl, girls weren't allowed to be Acolytes. OK, that means I'm older than most of our Acolytes. But - yes - another reason I like being an Acolyte at St. acolyteStephen's is that we have younger Acolytes, and older Acolytes, and we all work together to help make the church services beautiful.

If you aren't grown-up yet, but you are at least nine years old, or in fourth grade, and your folks agree, you can be an Acolyte at St. Stephen's. Even if you are a grown-up, you can be an Acolyte at St. Stephen's. We have Acolytes on Sundays at the 8 am service and at the 10:15 service, so it doesn't matter which service you usually attend.

If you are interested in this calling, see Allison de Kanel. If you don't know me, speak to one of the clergy, and they can point me out.

I look forward to meeting some new Acolytes!
Allison de Kanel, Acolyte Director
518-384-0529 (home)
518-339-5000 (cell)
allisondek@aol.com

The Choir

Music is well said to be the speech of angels; in fact, nothing among the utterances allowed to man is felt to be so divine. It brings us near to the infinite.                                                                                                — Thomas Carlyle

You should not be surprised that I began with a quote that makes reference to a mathematical concept. Infinity is such an interesting concept. There is no largest number.  Whatever number “x” is suggLohnasested, “x + 1” is still larger. One might believe such is the impact of the St. Stephen’s Chancel Choir on the worship experience. Many, many members of the congregation often express the joy and inspiration they feel from the Choir’s music. The depth that this sacred music reaches into their souls is ‘near to the infinite.”

As in the past summer, people offered special music while the choir took a break. Sincere appreciation to the following: Mary Alexander, Pat Jones, Doug & Susan Lohnas, Lisa McDonald, Rick & Carolyn Morin, June Russell, Judy Versocki, and Richey Woodzell. We are indeed blessed to have such tremendous musical talent and the willingness of people to share it.

From August 8 – 10 Doug and Susan attended the “Music in the Mountains 2017 Church Music Conference” held at East Stroudsburg University in Pennsylvania. For three days we participated with over one hundred fifty (150) musicians singing hundreds of pieces of music. Our choir will be singing several of those pieces throughout the year.

Choir rehearsals will continue to be on Thursdays, with the first one on Thursday, September 7th, beginning promptly at 7:30 pm. We are always looking for more singers to join the choir, especially men. 

Doug

Notice...Notice...Notice...
Imnportant itms for you to read, mark, and (inwardly) digest.

A query regarding bake sale items during the annual Tag sale: If anyone is interested in conducting we'll set up space in the kitchen door entrance where it has worked so well before.  We've also sold garden veggies and plants..Doreen  With school starting there are some great deals on supplies that are essential in the classroom. We will be collecting these items for the months of September and October and then bring them to schools in need in January when their supplies have been used up. We will have a box available for your donations. Ideas of items needed are tissues, Clorox wipes, pencils, pens and crayons. Thank you for your generousity in providing to those in need! Stephanie Grimason 
SICM. Summer Lunch was different this year with hot lunches prepared by the Red Rabbit folks who prepared the food in our kitchen.  The children who came to Jerry Burrell Park seemed to really enjoy the food – we saw little or no food on the ground, tables, or in the trash barrels.  We also had nearly 100 books to give to these kids, thanks in part to the donations you made. The Food Pantry still needs donations of food, money, and especially people to work behind the counter!  Thank you all for your donations of food and time! Theresa and Marti St. Stephen's Book Club will meet on Tuesday, September 12th at 7pm at church. The book we will discuss is OLIVE KITTERIDGE  by the author Elizabeth Strout. If you have any questions please feel free to call ,email or text Vicki Hoshko. Please bring any book suggestions for the rest of the year.
Many thanks to all for your prayers throughout the summer for Clark. He had his surgery on Friday, August 4th and it went well. He did well in recovery and came home on Tuesday, August 8th. With love, Millie and Clark. Thanks, Millie Vacations: Let's run some vacation PICTURES in the October Messenger. Send me or hand me your favoriet vacation picture from this summer. Include who and where. I'm sure you've been to some interesting place this summer. Tell us about with a picture and save 1000 words!

Invitation to hear Tracy Ormsbee’s experience of Listening for God
Saturday, October 7, 10:30 – 12 noon
Often times it is in sharing our life’s journey that we discover the footprints of God along the way.
“Faced with one of the most difficult life/career decisions
Tracy Ormsbee describes clear messages she received from God
along the way that ultimately led to the right choice for her. 
Now she is waiting to see his plan take shape.”

Spiritual discernment is described as prayerfully seeking God’s will, sTracy Ormsbeetriving to distinguish the voice of God among the many other voices that influence us.  Discernment entails living into God’s timetable, not our own; biding us to let go of preconceived ideas and open and alert to the presence and guidance of the Holy Spirit; beckoning us to be still and listen with the ear of the heart.

All are invited to this special Listening for God follow-up meeting. Participation in previous Listening for God meetings is not required. If you like, please sign-up at the Parish Faire. Above all, just come!!!

Dennie+, on behalf of the Spirituality Committee

Editor's note: Tracy is now the publisher of Adirondack Explorer. I lifted this photo from their May/June issue.  

Christmas at Sea

Do you like to knit or crochet? Then you are invited to participate in the Christmas at Sea program. This program is a ministry of the Seaman's Church Institute, an organization affiliated with the Episcopal Church that ministers to those who work in the maritime industry. Many of these individuals spend most of their time at sea, away from their families. The Christmas at Sea program provides gift boxes for sailors containing a scarf, neck warmer, socks or hat, knitted by volunteers. You can join in this rewarding and enjoyable ministry by knitting or crocheting items for the ministry and bringing the finished product(s) to St. Mary's Convent on the campus of Christ the King Spiritual Life Center, 575 Burton Road, Greenwich, NY 12834 for collection in late October. For more information, you can read more about the Christmas at Sea program here, or contact Paulette Stoddard by email by clicking here

Foyers... What is Foyers?

How well do you know your fellow church members? Here is a great opportunity to meet old and new friends over a meal and great conversation in a relaxed atmosphere.

We meet once a month in groups of six or eight at different homes each month. The hostess provides the entree with the others in the group providing the rest of the meal. It doesn't have to be elaborate. A pizza or a "Take out" is an alternative if you don't like to cook.  If you don't have room to entertain perhaps you could use the parish hall. The whole idea is to socialize with other parishioners.

Everyone is invited to join our Foyer group, young, old, single or as couples. Even if you are a "snow bird", just let us know when you will be around and you can be included. There will be a sign up sheet at the Parish Faire in September or you can email me at swoodcoc@nycap.rr.com

Give us a try. We'd love to meet you and get to know you. 
Gillian Woodcock 

HYMNS FOR PROFESSIONALS

Could you think of others?  They don’t have to be only from our 1982 Hymnal.

Dentists ‑ Crown Him with Many Crowns
Contractor ‑ The Church's One Foundation
Obstetricians ‑ Come, Labor On
Gardeners ‑ Lo, How a Rose E'er Blooming
Librarians ‑ Let All Mortal Flesh Keep Silent
Clothiers ‑ Blessed Be the Tie
Traffic Engineers ‑ Where Cross the Crowded Ways of Life
IRS ‑ We Give Thee But Thine Own
Pastors ‑ Be Not Dismayed
Innkeepers ‑ Abide With Me
Paleontologists ‑ Rock of Ages
Caterers ‑ All Things Are Ready Come To The Feast
Census Takers ‑ All People That On Earth Do Dwell
Electricians ‑ This Little Light of Mine

bells
The Bell Choir
naked goods
Tag sale
parish hall
Parish Hall
bells
Give it a try!

St. Stephen's Episcopal Church

Church Staff
The Rev. Dr. James R. McDonald, Rector,  Rev. Dennie Bennett, Assisting Priest,
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, Jim Syta; Jr. Warden, Claudia Jakubowski
Clerk: to be appointed; Treasurer: Denise Crates

Vestry Class of 2017
Joanne Frank, Peter Nelson, Elissa Prout

Vestry  Class of 2018
Linda Emaelaf, Liz Varno, Mary Alexander

Vestry Class of 2019
Stephanie Grimason, Mary Ann Harrington, Daniel Ruscitto

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: james.ross.mcd@gmail.com Our website is http://www.saintstephenschenectady.org/
Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/SaintStephensSchenectady

The Messenger is published September - June. Chris Jones is the publisher.