The Labyrinth Walk
Thursday, December 14, 2017

Stewardship Update

As of Monday, December 4, St. Peter's has received $293,000 in pledges for the 2018 Budget!
The proposed budget for 2018 is $525,000.00.

You may put your Pledge Card in the offering plate on any Sunday, mail it to the church office, or hand it in to the church office during regular business hours. The Vestry and Staff respectfully ask that you pray about the amount that you will be donating to St. Peter's in 2018.
 
Here are a few FAQs about pledging:

At this time of the year,  many Churches are asking their members to make a "Pledge." What exactly is a "Pledge"?

- Is it a Legal Contract? NO.  In other words, if you find that you are unable to pay as pledged, or promised, you will not be sued or harassed.

- Is it a  statement of intention to donate a certain amount?  YES
 
- Are there any circumstances that are acceptable for a person to cancel or decrease the amount of a Pledge?   YES  Some of these circumstances could include:death of the person who made the pledge;  transfer to another state; layoff or cut in salary;  unexpected and exorbitant medical bills not covered by insurance.

If you have further questions on this matter, please consult a member of the Vestry or a staff member.

Pledge Cards for 2018 Budget
 
To date pledged:              $293,000
Remaining pledge gap:    $232,000 
Goal:                                $525,000
Dollar Bills 
All $1 bills  in the offering plate this Sunday will go to the Discretionary Fund.     
Bank Draft Form
Did you know that you can have your tithe to St. Peter's automatically taken out of your checking our savings account? The Bank Draft Form is located in the link below. Print this form out and give it to the church office. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact Mike King at
 
Nominations for Vestry 2018
 Nominations are now being accepted for members of St. Peter's who would like to serve on the Vestry.  The opportunity is a 3-year commitment/term, which includes monthly meetings and other duties.
 
Qualifications to serve on the Vestry (from Arkansas Canon 24, Section 6c):
  • A confirmed communicant of the Parish in good standing of not less than 18 years of age
  • A frequent attendant upon the services of the Parish for the six months preceding the election.
  • A regular contributor or a member of a family unit which is a regular contributor for the support of the Parish.
  • Spouses shall not both be members of the Vestry at the same time.
  • Members of the full-time paid staff (including clergy) and their spouses shall not be eligible to serve.
The vestry is the legal representative of the Parish with regard to all matters pertaining to its corporate property.  The basic responsibilities of the vestry are to help define and articulate the mission of the congregation, to support the church's mission by word and deed, to select the rector, to ensure effective organization and planning, and to manage resources and finances.
 
During the Annual Meeting in January, we will elect 3 new Vestry members (3-year term) and 1 to replace a resignation due to health (1-year term).  Please prayerfully consider if this is something you feel called to do.  If you believe someone else at St. Peter's should serve, be sure to ask him/her before submitting a nomination.
 
All nominations should be sent to John Churchwell, Parish Administrator, and received no later than Friday, January 5, 2018

All Hands Ministry Team Meeting!
 All Current (and those interested) Lectors, Greeters, Ushers, Oblationers, and Hospitality Members are encouraged to attend one of the upcoming Ministry Team Refresher Trainings! We will be going over information such as Ultimate Ushering: Mastering Mixed Doubles and To Bow or not to Bow, that is the Question.
These 30 minute meetings will be held in Classroom Two at 9:30am and 10:30am on January 21, and February 18.

Join Bob, Peggy, and Linda as they unwrap the mysteries of our prayer book and how to use it - both communally and privately. A simple soup supper will be served. Childcare will be provided.

MANDATORY REHEARSAL: For all Christmas Pageant Kids 
 - Angel Choir, Speaking and Non-Speaking Roles AND Orchestra!
SAVE THE DATE - December 20, 5-7pm. Dinner will be provided!  
Contact Karen Collins if you have a problem with this time.
Also, there will be another rehearsal THIS coming Sunday, December 17 at 3pm!
Blue Christmas Service at St. Nicholas' Episcopal Church December 21, 2017
6:30pm    
For many, Christmastide brings up as many feelings of grief, sadness, stress, and confusion as it does warmth and joy. For this reason, a Blue Christmas Eucharist will be held December 21 st at 6:30pm at St. Nicholas' Episcopal Church, 4001 Club Manor Drive, Maumelle, AR. This service will feature soft music of the dulcimer, candlelit meditative stations for reflection and quiet, and prayers that honor the contemplative wonder of the incarnation. This Eucharist is a calm oasis of gentle celebration in the midst of a hectic season. We hope that those who are experiencing loss will find this service to be a container for their grief and that those who are experiencing the challenges of humanity will find it a resting place.

Notes from Rev. Dr. Linda Brown

Which Advent ?
 
Do you rejoice during Advent, and what are you rejoicing about? Or do you listen to John the Baptist when he identifies 'repentance' as the message and the sentiment of Advent?
 
Of course we rejoice in the birth of the Savior, Emmanuel. But what does his birth mean to us? It is sweet to imagine a peaceful stable scene with cute animals and children dressed as wise men, shepherds, and angels. But what about John the Baptist? Isn't he preaching to us that... "the Kingdom of God is at hand."? He's not just warning common people, but the rulers of the world; those in power. He's talking about the impending judgment of the world in the Word of God, signified by the coming of Christ.
 
It seems that we have removed completely the recognition of the radically political character of Advent. We don't want to talk about the Second Advent or Second Coming. But understanding either Advent has to reconcile the relationship of both Advents. The early Christians understood that the message of both Advents is political. They understood that with Christ's coming, all mankind is accountable to human life and all created life.
 
The politics of both Advents is emphasized in the 'Magnificat' (Luke 1: 52-54) attributed to Mary:
 
            He has put down the mighty from their thrones,
and has exalted those of low degree;
He has filled the hungry with good things,
and the rich has sent empty away
 
This is the Second Advent and the truth of Christ's Coming.

Adult Forum
Sunday, 10:00am, Library
Exciting news for the Adult Forum and St. Peter's this Sunday 12/17. We have the Human Rights Campaign Arkansas Director, Kendra Johnson, as our guest. 
Kendra R. Johnson joined the Human Rights Campaign as the Arkansas State Director for Project One America in August 2014. As a native of Little Rock, Arkansas, Kendra is thrilled to be working to advance fairness and equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people right in her own backyard. Through Project One America, Kendra hopes to build a better, more equitable South that is strengthened by diversity, safe schools, inclusive institutions and welcoming communities.
Kendra has been a lifelong volunteer and activist, including founding the first lesbian/bi-sexual support group at Spelman College in the 90s and volunteering communications services for Brazil's first historically black college. She currently serves as the Board Chair for Southerners on New Ground (SONG), the largest grassroots LGBTQ organization in the South. 
Join us for an informal discussion on one of the key issues of our day: Opening the arms of the church to the LGBTQ population in its pews. Find out about the Human Rights Campaign, the largest civil organization for LGBTQ people in the world with over 1.5 members and supporters, and learn about why allies are needed more than ever. The conversation is a safe space for questions, answers and debate. 
The Adult Forum will be on hiatus for the holidays.
In 2018 January we will begin an awesome series presented by our own Dr. Donna Bowman of UCA's Honors College
Jesus and His Jewish Influences
8:50am Discussion in Library
This set of 24 30 minute lectures by Dr Jodi Magness, Dept. of Religion. U. of North Carolina at Chapel Hill seeks to provide an understanding of how Jesus's teachings and views were shaped by his Jewish background and context.Jodi Magness PhD is an archaeologist who has done distinguished work in Israel and Greece, participating in 20 excavations. Her primary research interests center on the archaeology of the Holy Land from the destruction of Solomon's Temple to the Muslim Conquest.
Church's Teachings for a Changing World
Parish Hall Chapel, Sundays at 10:00am. Books are available in the office to borrow or purchase.
All are welcome at any time.

Brown Bag Book Club
Start Date: November 29
Time: 12:00 Noon - 1:00 pm
Place: St. Peter's Library

Kathleen Norris, the author of Dakota and Cloister Walk offers up her meditation on Mary, collecting sixty images of the mother of Jesus, from Raphael to Leonardo da Vinci--from Virgin, to peasant girl, to anxious parent, to Mother of God.
 
The Brown Bag Book Club will read and discuss Norris' beautifully illustrated book as their Advent Study. I hope you will make time in your busy Advent lives to come and focus on Mary, Mother of Jesus.
 
The book may be obtained through Amazon for approximately, $15.
 
Rev. Dr. Linda Brown, Deacon
 

Art, Pray, Love
 
Save the date! January 27, 2018. The Art, Pray, Love  
Fundraiser for the Guatemala Medical Mission.
 
We would like to introduce a partial list of several artists who will be participating in the event. They are working hard creating new work to display and sell.
 
We welcome back:
Don Byram - Photography
Michael Church - Collage and Mixed Media
Jeanetta Darley - Color pencil and Mixed Media
Brandon Hudson - painting
Scott Mattson - Digital and Oil Painting
Sheila Parsons - Watercolor Painting
Dr. David Pope-Painting
 
New to Art, Pray, Love:
Kateri Balogh - Abstract Paintings
Nicole Boswell - Painting
Micah Boswell - Wood Working
Tommy Wallace - Photography
 
Introducing the St. Peter's Table
We would like our St. Peter's artists to participate as well. We have heard several of you say that you would like to help raise funds for Guatemala by selling your artwork, but that you do not have enough inventory to fill a space or a table. For this reason we are adding something new for 2018...a St. Peter's Artist Table! So if you have only a few pieces ready for display and sale, you have a place at the table. The guidelines for participating will be the same whether you are displaying on the walls of the Parish Hall or on the St. Peter's table. You will be invited to attend the Meet the Artist Dinner on January 22nd, where we honor the participating artists with a delicious dinner, sharing stories and talking about the medical mission to Guatemala. Best of all, you will be helping to fund the 2018 Medical Mission Trip.
 
Please contact Marilyn Rishkofski for guidelines.

 
Christmas Schedule

Christmas Eve

Thursday
Friday
Saturday
Sunday
Monday
December 14
December 15
December 16
December 17
December 18
12:00pm
Advent Noonday
Prayers
2:00pm
SLS Planning
(Library)
6:30pm
Sandy Hook Vigil
7:00pm
Enneagram
(Library)
7:00pm
Evening Bible Study
(Morgan House)






4:00pm
Conway Locally Grown
(Parish Hall)
5:30pm
Advent Compline
5:30pm
Morgan House Reserved







9:00am
Food Pantry
9:00am
Morgan House Reserved

7:30am
Rite I
8:40am
Nursery Opens
8:50am
Jesus/Jewish Influences
(Library)
9:00am
Enriching our Worship Eucharist
10:00am
Adult Forum
Family Formation
Choir Practice
11:00am
Rite II
12:00pm
Handbells
(Balcony)
3:00pm
Children's Christmas Rehearsal
7:00pm
Contemplative Quaker Fellowship
(Classroom 4)
12:15pm
After-Noon Bible Study
(Library)
5:30pm
Advent Compline
6:30pm
Narcotics Anonymous
(Morgan House)
7:00pm
Circle of Trust
(Classroom 4)
 













Tuesday
Wednesday
Thursday
Friday
Saturday
December 19
December 20
December 21
December 22
December 23
12:00pm
Advent Noonday Prayers
5:30pm
EfM  
(Classroom 2)  

  
 


12:00pm
Brown Bag Book Club
(Library)
2:00pm
Staff Meeting 
 
5:00pm
Children's Christmas Rehearsal 
5:30pm
Fledglings Writing Group
(Library)  
5:30pm
Unwrapping the Prayer Book
6:30pm
Narcotics Anonymous
(Morgan House)
7:00pm
Holy Eucharist and Prayers for Healing   
12:00pm
Advent Noonday
Prayers
2:00pm
SLS Planning
(Library)
7:00pm
Enneagram
(Library)
7:00pm
Evening Bible Study
(Morgan House)
6:30pm
Sandy Hook Vigil












4:00pm
Conway Locally Grown
(Parish Hall)
5:30pm
Advent Compline
5:30pm
Morgan House Reserved

9:00am
Food Pantry
9:00am
Morgan House Reserved
 
 
Save the Date!
                      
December 17    The Rev. Peggy Cromwell, preaching in all three services  
 
December 22    Greening and Singing, 5:00pm   
 
December 24     Christmas Eve
                          11:00am Service (only service for the morning)
                          The Rev. Dr. Linda Brown, preaching 
                          5:00pm Christmas Eve Service   
                          8:00pm Christmas Eve Service
                          The Rev. Peggy Cromwell, preaching
 
December 25    9:00am Christmas Day Service   
                         The Rev. Dr. Robert C. Brown, preaching   
 
**December 27    Holy Eucharist and Prayers for Healing- CANCELLED 
 
**December 26 through December 29 and January 1, Parish Office Closed   
 
**There will not be a Labyrinth Walk on December 28.   
 
December 31   The Rev. Robert Wetherington, preaching     
 
January 7         Vestry Meeting, 1:00pm, Morgan House 
 
January 15       Parish Office Closed for Mr. Luther King Jr. Day  
 
January 21       All-Parish Meeting, 12:30pm   
 
January 27      Art Pray Love  
 
February 14    Ash Wednesday  
 
February 18   First Sunday in Lent   
 
April 1           Easter Sunday 
December 17 - December 23  Birthdays
   
Nancy Allen
12/17
Camille LaGrossa
12/17
Danny Reed
12/17
Hutson Teague
12/18
Aiden Weidower
12/19
Jennings Burruss
12/20
Lisa Lachowski
12/20
Mike Moses
12/20
Andrew Stone
12/20
Molly Welch
12/23
O God, our times are in your hand: Look with favor, we pray, on your servants, as they begin another year. Grant that they may grow in wisdom and grace, and strengthen their trust in your goodness all the days of their lives; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
Book of Common Prayer, page 830
Help Out the Food Pantry
Don't forget your items to bring this Sunday!  You may also drop off items in the church lobby anytime during the week.  With your help we are able to provide food to those in need.
2 cans whole kernel corn; 1 box of cereal; 2 pkg ramen
Diapers, Feminine Hygiene Products    
**If you are bringing fresh produce to donate, please contact someone with a key and see that it is placed in the Food Pantry refrigerators. 
Pantry Musings
This is the third Sunday of Advent. It is a time of hopeful waiting. The Psalm 126 promises God's forgiveness, and John the Baptist tells of one that is greater than he who is coming. There is hope and great anticipation in all of the scriptures for this Sunday. We cannot live long without hope. It is essential for life to go on. Those who lose hope often die in their struggles with depression and loss of will to live. Loss of human community is a great cause for depression. Shunning throws a person outside of community. In the aloneness of the shunning, the person may repent of his ways and rejoin the community; succumb to the depression; or find a new community. In any case, the Israelites were looking for hopeful signs and John the Baptist was happy to promise them hope. This promise of hope gave those who confess Jesus as the Messiah, during the time of the writing of the Gospel of John, hope as their small community was being forced to separate from the synagogue for the Jewish leaders could not accept the christology of those who believed. John tells us a story of the birth of Christianity as it separates from a synagogue. It is at times a painful story and at other times it offers hope. We might want to think of those who have been denied their community through the actions of others as the week progresses? Pray for the children of undocumented immigrants, for those who have left the homes to come here in hope of escaping political and military oppression, of the poor, the unemployed and the underemployed, those who are incarcerated for drug addiction, and others. -Ann Drake
 
Scripture Readings for Sunday, December 17, 2017
The 9:00am Service will lead the Psalm  
and read from 1 Thessalonians.  
 
Isaiah 61:1-4, 8-11
The spirit of the Lord God is upon me,
because the Lord has anointed me;
he has sent me to bring good news to the oppressed,
to bind up the brokenhearted,
to proclaim liberty to the captives,
and release to the prisoners;
to proclaim the year of the Lord's favor,
and the day of vengeance of our God; 
to comfort all who mourn;
to provide for those who mourn in Zion-
 
to give them a garland instead of ashes,
the oil of gladness instead of mourning,
the mantle of praise instead of a faint spirit.
They will be called oaks of righteousness,
the planting of the Lord, to display his glory.
They shall build up the ancient ruins,
they shall raise up the former devastations;
they shall repair the ruined cities,
the devastations of many generations.
For I the Lord love justice,
I hate robbery and wrongdoing;
I will faithfully give them their recompense,
and I will make an everlasting covenant with them.
Their descendants shall be known among the nations,
and their offspring among the peoples;
all who see them shall acknowledge
that they are a people whom the Lord has blessed.
I will greatly rejoice in the LORD,
my whole being shall exult in my God;
for he has clothed me with the garments of salvation,
he has covered me with the robe of righteousness,
as a bridegroom decks himself with a garland,
and as a bride adorns herself with her jewels.
For as the earth brings forth its shoots,
and as a garden causes what is sown in it to spring up,
so the Lord God will cause righteousness and praise
to spring up before all the nations.
 
Psalm 126
1 When the Lord restored the fortunes of Zion, *
   then were we like those who dream.
2 Then was our mouth filled with laughter, *
   and our tongue with shouts of joy.
3 Then they said among the nations, *
   "The Lord has done great things for them."
4 The Lord has done great things for us, *
   and we are glad indeed.
5 Restore our fortunes, O Lord, *
   like the watercourses of the Negev.
6 Those who sowed with tears *
   will reap with songs of joy.
7 Those who go out weeping, carrying the seed, *
   will come again with joy, shouldering their sheaves.
 
1 Thessalonians 5:16-24
Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. Do not quench the Spirit. Do not despise the words of prophets, but test everything; hold fast to what is good; abstain from every form of evil.
May the God of peace himself sanctify you entirely; and may your spirit and soul and body be kept sound and blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. The one who calls you is faithful, and he will do this.
 
John 1:6-8,19-28
There was a man sent from God, whose name was John. He came as a witness to testify to the light, so that all might believe through him. He himself was not the light, but he came to testify to the light.
This is the testimony given by John when the Jews sent priests and Levites from Jerusalem to ask him, "Who are you?" He confessed and did not deny it, but confessed, "I am not the Messiah." And they asked him, "What then? Are you Elijah?" He said, "I am not." "Are you the prophet?" He answered, "No." Then they said to him, "Who are you? Let us have an answer for those who sent us. What do you say about yourself?" He said, "I am the voice of one crying out in the wilderness, 'Make straight the way of the Lord,'" as the prophet Isaiah said. Now they had been sent from the Pharisees. They asked him, "Why then are you baptizing if you are neither the Messiah, nor Elijah, nor the prophet?" John answered them, "I baptize with water. Among you stands one whom you do not know, the one who is coming after me; I am not worthy to untie the thong of his sandal." This took place in Bethany across the Jordan where John was baptizing.
 
   
 
Prayers of the People 
Prayers and Petitions: 
Nikki; Shannon; Mike and Kelley (safe travels); John and Stephanie (safe travels); George, Ariel and family; Susan; Shane; Fred; Kay; Liz; Nancy; Andy; Dee; Richard; Sam; Fred and Lillian; The Readnour family; Harry; Sara; James; Freda; Glenn; Julie; Regina; Jessica; Susan; Peggy, John.  

In Loving Support for:
Jenny, Doug, and Odessa; Micah; Sam; Mouaz; Natalie.

In Constant Prayer for our Future Rector, whomever God leads to us.

Thanksgivings:
We give thanks for the people of St. Peter's and visitors with us this week.
We give thanks for: Sandy Simpson; Scott, Tracy, Walker, and Wade Simpson; Krystle Singh, Kassidy Knowles; Chris Smith; Wesley Smith; Norma Smothers; Will, Toni, Madison and Riley Smothers; Kenneth, Susan, and Harper Sobel; Jerry and Mary Southard.
We give thanks forCrosspoint Baptist Church.    
We give thanks for the Conway Islamic Center.
We give thanks for our Adult Forum.
We give thanks for The Rev. Tomas Calel and the Holy Cross of Mt. Calvary in Balanya.
We give thanks forThe Rt Revd John Smylie, the Diocese of Wyoming.
We give thanks for Advent Circle Songs at St. Martin in the Fields, Philadelphia .
 
The Departed:   
John Shirley; Molly Whittaker; Dorothy; Frances Dian Shelley. 

 

Team 3
7:30am
9:00am
11:00am
Lectors
Pam Holt
Susan Sobel
Kevin Mequet
Dee Sanders
Ushers
Pam Holt
Dinah Reed
Danny Reed
Wayne Stengel
John Vanderslice
Oblationers

Katrina Wilcox
Leo Wilcox
Henrey Van Lierop
Katheleen Van Lierop
Greeters

Lisa Crowson
Lynne Rich
John Vanderslice
Eucharistic Visitor

Deana Weindorf

Eucharistic Minister
Stacey Coleman
Kathryn Spinks
Dee Sanders
Beth Brady
Nathan Greer
Acolytes

 C: Xaiden Sharpe
C:Miles Greer
T1: Jack Wirtz
T2: Isabel Ruckle
G: Ashlyn Readnour
Vestry Counters


Christy Garrett-Jones
Dan Allen
Altar Guild


Team 1



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