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November 3, 2021

IN-GATHERING SUNDAY: This Sunday is our in-gathering Sunday for our Stewardship Campaign. Pledge cards went out with quarterly statements 2 weeks ago. If you did not get yours, there are extras in the narthex. Please pray about helping us to raise our weekly pledge totals for the coming year. We just need an average increase of $20 a week per pledging family to meet our goal of getting back on track after the pandemic. We will collect the pledge cards on All Saints November 7th at all services. Thank you to those who have already turned in their pledge and have made the much-needed increase! If you’d like to fill out an online pledge card – please click here. You can also catchup on all things Stewardship – click here to go to the Stewardship page.
TRUNK OR TREAT: Thank you to Julia and all who made our Trunk or Treat such a huge success. We will definitely plan on a repeat next year.
BRENE BROWN CONFERENCE: The next two weeks, I will be attending a course offered by the Diocese on Dare to Lead by Brene Brown. The course will be on Thursday and Friday each week Nov. 4,5,11 and 12. I will not be in the office those days.
BE CAREFUL OF FAKE EMAILS: We just had an instance of a fake email being sent to the finance committee with an attachment that is almost certainly malware or a virus. All of our emails end with “stpaulskaty.org”. This one was “stlpaulskatyoutlook.com” Anything other than that is bogus. If in doubt contact Jennifer or myself but whatever you do, do not open the attachment.

October 27, 2021

TRUNK OR TREAT: Don’t forget all the special events this Sunday for All Hallows Eve. See the article above from Julia about what all will be happening this Sunday starting at 9:30.
CLERGY CONFERENCE: Fall Clergy Conference was Monday Oct. 25-27. It was wonderful to be back together for our first conference since the start of the pandemic. Bishop Andy is back from his sabbatical and we had a very full three days all focused on moving forward in our work to spread the gospel.
BRENE BROWN CONFERENCE:  The next two weeks, I will be attending a course offered by the Diocese on Dare to Lead by Brene Brown. The course will be on Thursday and Friday each week Nov. 4, 5, 11 and 12. I will not be in the office those days.
COUNCIL DELEGATES NEEDED:  We have two openings for Diocesan Council February 25-26. One is for a 3 year term and the other is to fill in for one of our delegates who cannot attend this year. Please contact Andrea or Mark is you are interested.
PLEDGE CARDS:  Pledge cards went out with quarterly statements last week. If you did not get yours, there are extras in the narthex. Please pray about helping us to raise our weekly pledge totals for the coming year. We just need an average increase of $20 a week per pledging family to meet our goal of getting back on track after the pandemic. We will collect the pledge cards on All Saints November 7th at all services.
BEACON MINISTRY: One of our long time outreach ministries has been the Beacon Homeless Ministry. As part of our stewardship campaign I prepared a short (2 minute) video about this important ministry. Click below to watch the video:

October 20, 2021

SHARING YOUR TIME AND TALENT: An important part of our stewardship program is letting you know how your gifts of time, talent, and treasure help us fulfill the mission of St. Paul’s. Loving God and Loving our neighbor. Vacation Bible School works on both of our areas. Vestry member Craig Henderson has prepared a short video about how VBS has touched his family and our community. Click here to watch video.
Clergy conference: Fall Clergy Conference is Monday Oct. 25-27. I will be at Camp Allen for the first normal conference in 2 years! Tuesday Bible Study and Wednesday 11:00 Eucharist and Theology Lunch are cancelled for next week.
Baptism on All Saints November 7: If you have someone in your family who would like to be baptized on November 7 please email Mark so we can make arrangements. All Saints is one of the designated Sundays for baptism.
COUNCIL DELEGATES NEEDED: We have two openings for Diocesan Council February 25-26. One is for a 3 year term and the other is to fill in for one of our delegates who cannot attend this year. Please contact Andrea or contact Mark is you are interested.
LAST CALL FOR VESTRY NOMINATIONS: We need to finalize our slate of vestry candidates. If you are interested, let Andrea know as soon as possible.

October 13, 2021

SHARING YOUR TIME AND TALENT: Time, talent and treasure are the themes of this year’s stewardship campaign. As we continue to move to some semblance of normal there are many rewarding ways you can share your time and talent. One is serving on altar guild. Rachel Adcock, the Altar Guild chair wrote this about serving on Altar Guild:
I love being on altar guild. I love entering a dark, quiet sanctuary on Saturday mornings, turning on the light, and walking into God’s house with a purpose, and a smile. I love knowing that altar guilds have been doing this same work for 2000 years – there’s a powerful honor to be part of that tradition. I love the camaraderie of being part of the terrific St. Paul’s altar guild team. I love knowing that while our team works to prepare the space at St. Paul’s, there are teams all over the globe doing the same thing at their home parishes. I love the work, yes, even polishing the silver! (Full disclosure – I do not love filling the candles with oil. Fortunately for me, there are people on the team that don’t mind it.) I love the pride and satisfaction in viewing the space in all it’s glory ready for Sunday Eucharist. And I love that as I say a quick prayer right before turning off the lights, I never fail to be blessed with a sense of privilege and honor to have been called to this work.
There is space for a few on this important team. I’d be happy to talk to anyone who thinks they might love being on altar guild too.

October 6, 2021

THANK YOU!!! Thanks to all those who volunteered at the Fall Festival. Even though we had one bit of rain the Festival was a great success. Special thanks to Mary McCreary for all the organizational work that she did and also to Jennifer who put in lots of extra hours to make sure everything ran smoothly.
GRIEF GROUP: We will be starting a Grief Group Oct 17. This is open to the community. Details below.
THE CHOIR LOOKING FOR SINGERS: As we move forward into more normal times, we would like to start to expand the choir back to what we had pre-pandemic. The choir rehearses on Sunday morning before the 10:30 so everything is on one day, no extra evening rehearsal. Dr. Oby is a wonderful teacher and I’m sure you will enjoy singing. He is happy to have you join them for a Sunday and see if you want to get involved. For more information email Jason.
NEXT BEACON: Our next Beacon volunteer day is October 21st. The Beacon is a diocesan program for homeless in Houston. We meet at the church at 9:00 and then head downtown to help prepare and serve lunch. We usually then go somewhere for lunch afterwards. Please email me if you plan to attend.
VESTRY NOMINATIONS: It is that time of year when we ask for volunteers to serve on vestry. The vestry is the group who have the job of overseeing all that we do. This coming year we will be taking a look at our Mission Statement and Core Values as we bring the church back to normal. This is very important work and we are looking for people who want to help our parish to continue to grow! Please email me for additional information.

September 29, 2021

FALL FAIR IS SATURDAY: The Fall Fair is back this Saturday and we need your help! There are several volunteer positions needing volunteers for either the 9-12 or 12-3 shifts as well as setup. What we are really short of is people during the actual fair.  Email Jennifer or call the office if you can help on this event.
ST FRANCIS BLESSING OF THE ANIMALS: The blessing of the animals will be Sunday October 10 at 4:00 p.m. Bring your furry or feathered friends or even just a picture to the blessing. We will be outdoors depending on the weather and the exact location will depend on whether we have to contend with wet grounds.
GRIEF SUPPORT GROUP: Several weeks ago I mentioned in a service that we were going to start a Grief support group. Thanks to a generous contribution following that service we have been able to proceed with setting this group up. This program is for anyone who are grieving the loss of a friend or family member. Each session begins with a video produced by experts on grief and recovery subjects. The group will have its initial meeting in the Youth Room on Sunday Oct 17 from 7:00-8:30 P.M. For more information click here to go to the GriefShare website. To register for the class email Jennifer. This group is open to anyone in the community so if you know someone who might benefit from this class, please let them know. We will have publicity flyers shortly.

September 22, 2021

HAPPY BIRTHDAY ST. PAUL’S: Sunday we celebrate the 63rd birthday of St. Paul’s! Mini cupcakes after both the 8:00 and 10:30 services. See you on Sunday.
THEOLOGY LUNCH: Starting TODAY will begin the latest book from Diane Butler Bass, “Freeing Jesus, Rediscovering Jesus as friend, teacher, savior, lord, way and presence. Each chapter examines one of these characteristics. It is written almost as a memoir as she turned 70 last year. I think everyone will enjoy this and the time to read each chapter isn’t that long, but there is much to discuss. Even if you don’t have the book feel free to join in the discussion.
VESTRY NOMINATIONS: It is that time of year when we ask for volunteers to serve on vestry. The vestry is the group who have the job of overseeing all that we do. This coming year we will be taking a look at our Mission Statement and Core Values as we bring the church back to normal. This is very important work and we are looking for people who want to help our parish to continue to grow!
We have a lot going on in the next couple of weeks. Please read all the articles.

September 15, 2021

VESTRY NOMINATIONS: It is that time of year when we ask for volunteers to serve on vestry. The vestry is the group who have the job of overseeing all that we do. This coming year we will be taking a look at our Mission Statement and Core Values as we bring the church back to normal. This is very important work and we are looking for people who want to help our parish to continue to grow!
THOSE WHO SERVE: Christie is working on a standard rotation of duties for those who serve on Sunday Morning. If you have not given her a preference for what Sunday you wish to serve each month, please get in contact so she can get the new schedules posted.
WORK DAY: Don’t forget the work day September 25 to get ready for the fall fair. Details below.
FALL FAIR: The Fall Fair is just around the corner. The sign up sheet for volunteers is in the narthex. This is one of those all hands on deck days and we need lots of volunteers. This is a really fun day and I’m sure you will enjoy taking part. Also spread the word with your neighbors, on your Facebook page and nextdoor.com.
THEOLOGY LUNCH: Starting TODAY will begin the latest book from Diane Butler Bass, “Freeing Jesus, Rediscovering Jesus as friend, teacher, savior, lord, way and presence. Each chapter examines one of these characteristics. It is written almost as a memoir as she turned 70 last year. I think everyone will enjoy this and the time to read each chapter isn’t that long, but there is much to discuss. Even if you don’t have the book feel free to join in the discussion.

September 8, 2021

THOUGHTS ON THE ANNIVERSAY OF 9/11: We are coming up on 20 years since 9/11. This Sunday, I will spend some of the sermon time on the topic. The gospel this week is where Jesus says to take up our cross and follow him. As we approach the anniversary, I hope you will take some time to look back over these past years and reflect on what we are called to do in response to the increasing violence in our world.
VIDEO MINISTRY: Someone asked when we were going to stop doing the livestream. Well, the answer is never as far as I can tell. This has become an important outreach and evangelism tool. We have people who physically have not been able to attend that now join us every Sunday. Almost every visitor for the past year has watched some of our services before making their first in-person visit. We also have the ability to use this for a funeral or wedding if people cannot attend in person. We have people from several states and Saudi Arabia who join us for bible study, Morning Prayer and Sunday services. I had a lovely thank you note from someone who has been watching us for the past several months and plans to join us when she feels it is safe and yes she supports the parish financially. The video ministry is a critical piece of our evangelism program! Thank you to those who make this ministry happen behind the scenes each and every week.
WEDNESDAY THEOLOGY LUNCH: Theology lunch will resume September 15 and noon. We will finish off the last of the Richard Rohr videos. Starting September 22 will begin the latest book from Diane Butler Bass, “Freeing Jesus, Rediscovering Jesus as friend, teacher, savior, lord, way and presence. Each chapter examines one of these characteristics. It is written almost as a memoir as she turned 70 last year. I think everyone will enjoy this and the time to read each chapter isn’t that long, but there is much to discuss.

September 1, 2021

BLOOD DRIVE: Thank you to the volunteers and the donors who made our blood drive a success. We exceeded our goal for units donated. Special thanks to Senior Warden Andrea Smith for heading this up.
HELP NEEDED WITH 9:15 THIS WEEK: Julia will be away and it would be very helpful if I could have someone assist me with the 9:15. I primarily need someone to help run the laptop for the PowerPoint slides. It’s a matter of click the arrow key when I need the next slide and read the prayers of the people.
SUPPORT FOR IDA VICTIMS: Several people have asked how the diocese is responding to Ida. Episcopal Relief and Development (ERD) is the organization from the national church I’ve worked with in the past (and helped physically during Katrina). They also helped us out during Harvey. If you want to make a donation you know will be well spent, I would suggest ERD. Click here to go to the hurricane relief page. I plan to make a donation from the rector’s discretionary fund. You can make a donation to that and specify it for hurricane relief and I will include it in what I donate.
SUPPORT FOR AFGHAN REFUGEES/ALLIES: Episcopal Migration Ministries is working with Afghan refugees who have been evacuated from the country because of their service to our country. The Presiding Bishop has a message that you can see here about how you can help.
ROUND UP SUNDAY SEPTEMBER 12: Christian Formation for all ages resumes on the 12th. Join us to kick off the program year. There will be goodies. Please note the 9:15 family service will not meet that day. That service will resume on September 19 at 9:00.

August 25, 2021

BLOOD DRIVE THIS SATURDAY: Our second blood drive is this Saturday 9-1:30 and we have plenty of spaces. Please consider signing up to donate. Details below.
ACOLYTE TRAINING THIS SUNDAY: Calling all new acolytes this is the day to get ready to serve and then go out for pizza and fun. Details below.
THANK YOU FOR VOLUNTEERING: We have two new families who will be ushering. I would like to find another family or two other adults to serve once a month. That will bring us up to full strength for the usher teams at 10:30.
SUNDAY FORMATION FOR ADULTS: We need to move the start of Sunday School for all ages by 15 minutes this fall to accommodate the Family Service. That will start at 9:00 and Sunday school will start at 9:30. For those adults at the 8:00, I’m aware that delays the start from what we are used to. If I could have a couple of volunteers to help me get the class started, we could begin in the Conference Room at 9:15. I’ll provide a question or topic to discuss for the first 15 minutes led by a lay person and then I’ll join as soon as the children’s service is over. Also if some of you are interested in leading a class, I’m happy to have help on a busy Sunday morning. Our first offering will be a video series and discussion of “Eclipsing Empire, Paul, Rome and the Kingdom of God.”
SAVE THE DATE – PARISH CLEAN UP DAY: Peter Parsons has scheduled a workday on September 28th to get ready for the Fall Fair. We will start at 9:00 and hope to be done by noon. Many hands will make quick work.