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Dragon Tales
December 11, 2019
A Note from Jeff
I know, I know, it’s that time of year again. We have had an entire year to dream, to plan, to get up and do. And yet, each year it is such a rush at the end. If you are like me, we belong in the Procrastinator’s Hall of Fame (if we ever get around to building it). Christmas is always eons away, until it is not. 
Also, everyone wants to celebrate in some way, and because it is a season of giving, we all want to share our celebrations and then – bam! – we are over-scheduled. Again. Our anxiety ramps up, we become short-tempered, and we lose sight of the very reason for the celebrations.

Take heart! I can’t fix your schedules – you have to learn to say ‘no’ more often (except when I ask for volunteers!). However, I might be able to help with the anxiety part. Nope, not doing your wrapping for you.

At the beginning of every Youth Group meeting we go around the room, each person sharing in turn their ‘Highs’ and ‘Lows.’ You have often heard me talk of this, because it is important, and it is simple in practice. You can go around the dinner table, even if it is only two of you. Share something that has you joyful or excited, or just made you smile. Then share something that is bothering you, has you upset, or has got your anxiety meter pegged to “I’m gonna blow!” And then, do something maybe even more important. Stop thinking about what you just shared and listen to the next person. And the next. Really listen.

It is so simple, and yet, think of all that is happening. We are sharing our feelings knowing what we share will be respected, and that is a basis for forming trust. We are given an opportunity to speak when maybe we’d rather not, and that helps to lighten burdens. When our load feels lighter we can help carry others’. We let others know what we are thinking about, and that leads to the recognition that we are all so similar. And when we do the hard part and listen, we are letting the other person know we hear them, we accept them as a fellow human being, sharing so many of the same hopes and fears. Sometimes you might get some help out of the deal, but that is really besides the point. 

This works. I watch it work each week. I recently had a wonderful note from a parent telling me their young person had asked them for their Highs & Lows at home one evening. That is how you reach out, to make human connection. It is connection that helps us through any time of stress – good or bad. This is a simple, but very effective tool for connection. I’d also encourage you to think of using this tool beyond your family. Not everyone is celebrating, and not everyone is surrounded by loved ones. Making new connections might just become our most important reason for celebration this season.  
Giving Tree Items Due This Sunday

Our youth have created a Giving Tree in the narthex with items needed for local middle and high school youth. Return unwrapped with the tag to Youth Ministries Leader Jeff Conover or under the tree by Sunday, Dec. 15.
THIS Sunday, Dec. 15, youth and other volunteers are welcome to go caroling for our parishioners who are homebound. Meet at 11:15 a.m. and eat lunch and then leave for visits. Adult drivers are needed. Contact Jeff at jeff@st-margarets.org if you can help!

Youth Group Christmas party is this Monday, Dec. 16th.
Thank you for such a good turnout Monday night to support the Light House shelter program's BEST job training program in the field of culinary arts.We learned a great deal from guest speaker and Light House director Jo Ann Mattson.
Advent Study w/ the Rev. Peter Continues on Sunday

During the Formation hour of 10:20 to 11 a.m. on Sunday, the Rev. Peter will continue to lead Advent-centered discussions on "Redeemed: The Promises of Advent Through the Lens of Isaiah. All adults will be guilted into attending.
Honor/Remember a Loved One this Christmas

We are now taking orders for poinsettias and wreaths to decorate the church for Christmas. Poinsettias are $25 and wreaths are $40 . You can purchase online on Realm HERE . (Please make sure you purchase for the Flower Fund.) Please follow up with an email to
laura@st-margarets.org with your name, the name of the person, and whether they are being honored or remembered .

Volunteer to Deliver Christmas Meals to Locals

The need is great this year! Please help! Parishioners are asked to provide a Christmas dinner for the local families in need. The Mission Commission will provide the hams: parishioners are asked to provide ingredients for the rest of the meal and deliver it to the recipient a few days BEFORE Christmas Day. No cooking involved. Hams will be available at the church on Sunday, Dec. 22 in the parish hall. To volunteer, contact Barbara Marder at 410-518-9978 or scubaesc@aol.com
Guild Poinsettia Sale

The Women's Guild will again be selling poinsettias for parishioners to take home this Sunday in the Parish Hall during coffee hour. Please plan on paying with cash or check made out to "St. Margaret's Church" with "Guild poinsettia" in the memo line. The proceeds from the sale will go toward their outreach efforts in the local community.
quiet christmas
Quiet Christmas Services
Wed, December 18

Join us for a special Christmas service for those who are experiencing pain or sadness this holiday season. Services will be held next Wednesday, Dec. 18 at noon and 7:00 p.m.
Also, a special reminder that our Grief support group will meet THIS Sunday, December 15, from 2:00 to 4:00 p.m. in the All Saints Lounge of the Annex building (next to the nursery). All who have lost a special someone are very welcome to attend. For questions, contact the Rev. Patti Sachs at patti@st-margarets.org .
Ponder These Things by Rowan Williams
​Adult Formation Mon., Dec. 16 - Jan. 6, 13
7:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.
Fellowship Dinner at 6:15 p.m. 

We'll continue our Monday Adult formation study class using Ponder These Things by Rowan Williams. Through the book, participants discover the pattern of love that they reveal, a love that invites and embraces us so that we no longer remain as spectators, but find ourselves caught up in the drama that unfolds itself before us. Join us!
st nicholas
Visit with St. Nicholas on Dec. 22

Though there is no Sunday School on Dec. 22, young parishioners and families are welcome to come to the parish hall and interact with St. Nicholas on Sunday, Dec. 22. He will share a story and take gift requests from our young parishioners. Make sure to bring your cameras!
Christmas Lessons & Carols on Dec. 29

At our 9:00 and 11:15 a.m. services on Dec. 29, our music program presents Christmas Lessons & Carols, a service of carols and scripture readings. Join us for a morning of joyful song and cheer.

The morning of December 29 we will have a New Year's Brunch at 10:15 a.m. in the Parish Hall.

All are asked to bring a breakfast casserole dish to share.

Christmas Calendar

Christmas Sanctuary Decoration
Please bring any greens, magnolia leaves, etc. donations
on sanctuary steps
Sunday, Dec. 22 after noon

Christmas Eve
3:00 p.m. - with Traditional Carol Singing
5:00 p.m. - with special music from youth choirs
7:30 p.m.& 10:30 p.m. - Choral prelude and candlelight services

Christmas Day
10:00 a.m.

Christmas Lessons & Carols
Sunday, Dec. 29
9:00 & 11:15 a.m.
New Year's Brunch
10:15 a.m. - parish hall - Bring a breakfast casserole to share

No Sunday School on Dec. 22, 29, Jan. 5.
Children's Epiphany Pageant
January 5

All young children of the church are welcome to participate in the Children's annual Epiphany pageant on Sunday, Jan. 5 at 10:30 a.m. in the parish hall. Rehearsal will be January 4, 9:00 a.m . in the parish hall.

Adult and youth volunteers are needed.
Visit from Assisting Bishop Ihloff

The Right Reverend Robert Ihloff, former Bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Maryland and newly named Assistant Bishop to assist Bishop Sutton, will visit St. Margaret's on Sunday, January 5th. Please make sure you give him a warm St. Margaret's welcome.
day school
Day School News

Our Day School is holding Winter Workshops for young students who are out of school on Thursday, Dec. 19 and 20. Here is a registration form for more information.

An Open House for the school will be held on January 16 and 17 from 9:15 to 11:15 a.m.

Registration for KINDERGARTEN for 20-21 is now available HERE .

Registration for other classes begins Jan. 24 at 7 a.m.

For more information, contact Tricia McVeigh, Day School Director, at 410-757-2333 or email Tricia@st-margarets.org .

Day School Refugee Family Gift Drive
The Day School will be sponsoring a family this year for Christmas! One of our staff members here at SMDS has been working with a Burmese family for the past four years. This family came to the United States from Myanmar through a refugee settlement organization. They have been working very diligently to learn the English language, acclimate to our culture and succeed in their local community. Currently they are focused on saving money to buy a second car so that mom is able to get to and from work and also be able to pick up the children from school. There are three children in the family, two boys and a girl. Shing Thang is the oldest son. He is six and in first grade. Shing Om Ngai is five and in kindergarten and Shing Sein (Mimi) is four and she can’t wait to attend preschool. They love Power Rangers, play-doh, sticker books and playing outside on the playground. Mimi was just recently introduced to barbies and is enjoying them. 

Use this link to sign up to participate: http://bit.ly/smdschristmas

We would like to have all of the donations no later than December 18th. Please make sure all items are new.

If you would like to bring the items wrapped please make sure that they have a name on them.  Any unwrapped items will be wrapped the 19th and 20th by SMDS staff.
Greens Needed on Sunday

As our St. Margaret's Flower Guild prepares to decorate the sanctuary for Christmas, they will need donations from parishioners of evergreens, magnolia leaves, pine cones, or holly left by the sanctuary doors the afternoon of Sunday, December 22.
Tanzania Trip Update

Join Mike & Izzy Winn and Janice Roper-Graham on the trip of a lifetime March 14-27, 2020. See the great migration in the Serengeti, the Ngorongoro Crater, and meet our Dageno girls at their school. For more information: visit:
  https://www.st-margarets.org/tanzania-trip.html , call Teri Priebe at 540-760-8178 or email KingGeorgeTravel@gmail.com .
Have you made your pledge yet? Time is running out! Make your pledge HERE or fill out a card and put in the plate on Sunday! We need everyone to fully fund St. Margaret's in 2020 .
Sunday's Service
annual meeting
Parish Annual Meeting
January 26, 2020

Luncheon at 12:15 p.m.
Meeting begins at 12:45 p.m.
Nursery care is available .
This Sunday, Dec. 15
7:30 Service
Eucharistic Minister: Ben Tolley
Lector: Ben Tolley

9:00 Service
Euch. Ministers: Beth Knorr, Terry Otis
Lectors: Stacy Canuel, Kathy Lang
Acolytes: Joseph Jackson, Austin Canuel, Sophia Canuel, Cole Canuel, Gabby Smith
Children's Chapel: Zach & Cory Greene

11:15 Service
Euch. Ministers: Jim Hall, Stacia Bontempo
Lectors: Brett Snyder, Pat Hall
Acolytes: Dylan Bishop, Emily Bontempo, Peter Saroch, Henry Macmillan

Altar Guild Team: Charlie Lang, Teresa Todd, Susie Byrom, Robert Thomas
Flower Guild: Elizabeth Kopack
Coffeehour Team: Jan Little, Carol Williams, Lyn and Sam Sloan, Sarah Layman
Next Sunday, Dec. 22
7:30 Service
Eucharistic Minister: Jim Barnett
Lector: Susan Roberts

9:00 Service
Euch. Ministers: Elizabeth Bowers, Katy Strother
Lectors: Karyn Sproles, Barbara Marder
Acolytes: Katherine Parker, Matthew Parker, Caroline Viscardi, Molly Rose Svendsen, Hannah Ruegg
Children's Chapel: Sarah Balcom, Froggi Jackson

11:15 Service
Euch. Ministers: Sue Snyder, Jim Weekley
Lectors: Spencer Johnson, Sarah Hyde
Acolytes: Greta Lunsford Poe, Dylan Lunsford McBride, Sunny Bowers

Altar Guild Team: Jeanne Nardi, Jan Little, Mary Lesster, Kim Morrow
Flower Guild: Mollie Flounlacker
Coffeehour Team: Kathy and Charlie Lang, Laurie and Toby Tomko,
Would you like to serve for worship on Sundays? Email i nfo@st-margarets.org and let us know so we can connect you to the right leader!
St. Margaret's Staff

Jim Bowersox, Operations & Maintenance Assistant

St. Margaret's Church
1601 Pleasant Plains Road
Annapolis, MD 21409
(410) 974-0200
443-837-5463 Pastoral Emergency Line