Stewardship Testimonial: Dr. Michael Prucha
Sometime ago I told Raja that I would write a short testimonial for our fall stewardship campaign. I have since procrastinated, partially because I have been especially busy over these past weeks but also because I’ve never written something like this and was unsure of how to go about it. After giving it a long think, I decided I may as well start at the beginning...
I sometimes like to say that I was raised “Episco-Lutheran.” On most weekends I attended an Episcopal Church with my mom while during the week I went to grade school at my grandparents’ Lutheran Church. On holidays, Holy Week, or whenever family came to town, we went to Lutheran Church with my grandma and grandpa. I took confirmation classes in both traditions, and, after completing those classes, my mom told me that I could choose to be confirmed in the Episcopal Church, the Lutheran Church, or neither. I didn’t have to think about it very hard – I wanted to be confirmed in the Episcopal Church. In the Episcopal Church, I saw an effort and commitment toward including all manner of people with different backgrounds and circumstances, including people who have historically been cast aside by the Church. This seemed to me to be very much in the example of Christ. On the other hand, the Lutheran school I had attended belonged to a particularly fundamentalist strain of Lutheranism (which I will not name here), which tended toward exclusion and held certain attitudes and positions that, even as a teenager, I knew were not my own.
While I chose the Episcopal Church and do not regret that choice, there were certain aspects of my grandparents’ church that I missed and came to appreciate more as I got older. In that old building, there was a deep sense of history and tradition. Something about the sung liturgy and old chorale melodies, recited countless times through the years, seemed to have some existence outside of time and place. One could feel an undefinable yet very real connection to those German and Scandinavian immigrants who brought their faith to the Midwest, to the era of Bach and Buxtehude, and to the Reformation itself. I could never quite feel that same connection to history in the contemporary services at my mom’s church.
My wife and I moved to Kansas City full-time in 2021 and I first attended St. Mary’s almost by accident. I assumed that I would go to the Episcopal Church nearest to our apartment (which also will go unnamed), but its website did not prominently display when its services began. Having procrastinated until 9:45 on a Sunday morning to research this, I made a quick decision to go to St. Mary’s, the second-closest Episcopal Church and the closest which displayed service times on its home page. The moment I heard the choir sing the Introit, I knew that I had walked into something exceptional. The music, the liturgy, the architecture, and the attention to detail all pointed toward a tradition and history that seemed lacking to some degree at the various churches I had attended in college. Above all, the people were genuine and friendly. I felt welcome on the first day. At St. Mary’s, I’ve found a community that combines the best aspects of the two churches in which I was raised, one which is both traditional and inclusive.
Having shared the story of how I came to St. Mary’s, I would invite each of you to consider your own story. What first drew you to St. Mary’s? What keeps you coming back? Why St. Mary’s and not one of the 500 or so other churches in the Kansas City area? You have all been drawn here for diverse and personal reasons and together form a singular community. That community only functions at its best with the participation and contributions of its members. I urge you, therefore, to make a pledge to St. Mary’s. For some of you, that might be a little; for others, it may be a lot. But I hope that all of you will give generously, thinking about what St. Mary’s means to you today and what you want for St. Mary’s in the future.

- Mike Prucha

Anglican Poets: Isaac Williams
“The Altar”
Sonnet 2

"I love them that love Me: and those that seek Me early shall find Me."

I hear His voice: "Before the dawning day,
Lo, at thy door before the morning light
I knock; arise, My love," I hear Him say,
"Arise, my love, my fair one, come away:
My locks are dripping with the dews of night,
My head is filled with dew. Come to my sight,
Open the door, together take our flight,
And in our own celestial gardens stray:
The fountains are unsealed, the south-winds blow,
And from their beds the breathing spices flow.
Come, let us see if tender grapes appear
Upon our vine, if summer yet be near.
Rise up and haste; for all the rest are gone:
My love, My undefilèd is but one."

Isaac Williams (1802-1865) was an Anglican priest, a key figure in the Oxford Movement, and a disciple of John Keble. Born to a Welsh barrister, Williams received his education at Harrow and Oxford. His proficiency in Latin was exceptional, to the extent that he could only compose an English essay after first conceiving it in Latin—a skill that earned him a prize in Latin verse at Oxford and brought him to the attention of John Keble.

Ordained in 1829, Williams served as an assistant to John Henry Newman, making significant, albeit often understated, contributions to the Oxford Movement. He played a crucial role in crafting one of the most controversial Tracts for the Times. His involvement extended to the literary aspects of the movement, collaborating with Keble and Hurrell Froude in the creation of "Lyra Apostolica," an influential collection of hymns. Additionally, Williams contributed poems under a pen name to the British Magazine.

In 1865, during a period of frail health, Newman stayed with Williams, who, despite suffering from chronic asthma for years, insisted on driving his guest to the station. Unfortunately, this exposure led to a deterioration in Williams's health, ultimately leading to his untimely demise.

The following poem is extracted from "The Altar," a series of sonnets thematically connected to the sequence of the Mass.

- Jami Blakeley
Meet the Music Team: Roslinde Rivera
Roslinde Rivera is a Kansas City-based vocalist and arts administrator. She holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Vocal Performance from William Jewell College and certificates in Performance and Performance Management from the University of Missouri-Kansas City. She is currently pursuing a Master of Business Administration with a focus in Nonprofit Management at the University of Missouri-Kansas City. 

Roslinde has been at St. Mary’s for three years and enjoys singing with her colleagues and creating beautiful music in such a historic place.
Songflower Chorale
The Songflower Chorale is pleased to announce its Fall 2023 concert “Byrd, Britten, and More,” celebrating the legacy of English Renaissance master composer William Byrd and his impact on choral music in the four centuries since his death. Our program will feature several of Byrd’s Lain motets, framed by more recent works, including the brilliant “Rejoice in the Lamb” by Benjamin Britten and Jonathan Dove’s haunting “Seek Him that Maketh the Seven Stars.” Our guest artists for this concert include outstanding local organist Jacob Hofeling and the excellent Anthony Maglione and Jay Carter. The concert will be at historic St. Mary’s Episcopal Church in beautiful downtown Kansas City Missouri, 1307 Holmes Street, at 3:00 PM on Saturday, November 18, 2023. Admission is free; donations are welcome.
Notes From The Staff: Justin Smith
Hello Dear Friends,

We are in the midst of many preparations for the upcoming holiday season. People are out shopping for gifts for their family and friends, and the hustle and bustle of the world seems to be moving on all around us. It is for this reason that Advent exists. Advent comes from the Latin word which means “Coming”, and the one who is coming is Jesus. 

Like preparing for any guest or important figure, there must be preparations made for their arrival. The church has formed the season of Advent to help prepare our minds, hearts and souls for the coming of the Lord. The Advent and Christmas seasons are reflections of the reality that we are living in a lifelong Advent while here on earth, waiting for the coming of Christ, when he returns again. 

Are you ready? 

We know not the time nor the place with which the Lord will return, but we should always strive to make ready our hearts, and minds by preparing ourselves to greet him when he comes. There are many ways we can do this. The church traditionally has named these things prayer, fasting, and almsgiving. 

St. Mary’s takes seriously the development of the well-formed spiritual lives of its parishioners. What we do at the altar is not just mere pageantry. We go to the great lengths we do in our liturgy, so that it may be a pleasing offering of ourselves, our souls, and bodies to God, as a humble gift of sacrifice for what he has given us. The Mass is made up of a chronological sequence that prepares us in an adventitious way to encounter the One True God in the most intimate of settings, by taking the wholeness of him within ourselves. The Lord comes to us in the Eucharist in the form of simple elements. Bread and wine are produced from the earth and made with our human hands. These gifts are quite literally the fruits of our Labor and the giving of ourselves. The Mass then ends each week with the sending forth by the deacon. We are meant to take what we have inwardly digested and go out to bring others to this same spiritual nourishment. 

It is no coincidence that stewardship always seems to happen at this time of the year. Stewardship is our way of asking the members of the congregation to reflect on the many gifts God has given us. How are we going to repay what the Lord has done for us? While the Lord gives of himself freely without expectation, it is fitting that we do what we can to honor him with our time, talent and treasure. It takes much more than a village to run a church, even a small one like St. Mary’s. What we are doing here is big. We are offering the rest of the episcopal world a type of atmosphere that engages the senses in a deeply moving and divinely spiritual way. With that there are many things that go on behind the scenes, such as having the luxuries of electricity, heating, cooling, administration, goods and supplies, let alone the more visible things that enhance our worship, such as music, organ, incense etc. 

We are at 43% of our goal for pledging, and we have a little over a month left in this year. By comparison we should ideally be at about 80% at this time. If you love what we are doing at St. Mary’s, please, please give of your time talent and treasure. Get involved, make a donation, come to church and invite your friends. Our community is dependent upon one another to continue our unique ministry. Consider this an opportunity to prepare yourselves for the Lord by making personal sacrifices in honor of his ultimate sacrifice. Let us take what we have received in the Eucharist and from St. Mary’s and present it back in tangible ways that will continually prepares us for the Lords coming.

God Bless You,

The Annual Convention of the Diocese of West Missouri
On November 10-11, the Diocese of West Missouri held its annual convention at Grace and Holy Trinity Cathedral. The bishop, the clergy, and delegates from all the churches in our diocese gathered to worship together and to conduct the business of the diocese, such as elections and the budget.

The delegates from St. Mary’s were Erika Darling, Raja Reed, and Philip Lofflin (alternate).
Parishioner Recognition
Congratulations, Dr. Richard Liantonio!
Richard Liantonio, who is a Postulant for the Priesthood and an acolyte at St. Mary’s, just passed his doctoral defense – with flying colors! We extend our hearty congratulations!

Richard (He/Him) is Library and Title IX Coordinator and Equity Compliance Officer as well as Adjunct Faculty in Hebrew Bible at Saint Paul School of Theology. He is a Ph.D. Graduand in Hebrew Bible in the Centre for Jewish Studies at the University of Manchester. He has a Bachelor of Arts with a double major in Bible and Music from Houghton College, and a Master of Arts in Theological Studies from Nazarene Theological Seminary. His research focuses on a cognitive linguistic metaphor analysis of happiness language in the Psalms and ancient Near Eastern literature. He is married to Jeff Stegner, and catdad to Harvey and Hadley.
Co-Hosting Thanksgiving with St. Pauls
This year, we are collaborating with St. Paul's to have a joint Mass and Thanksgiving meal at St. Paul’s. Mother Brittany with St. Paul's will preach, and Fr. Sean, will celebrate. We will have acolytes and readers from both of our churches represented. Following the service, all are welcome to join a collaborative feast, watch the football game, or play games. St. Paul’s will provide the turkeys, and St. Mary’s will help organize the side dishes and desserts. Attached you will find a link to Perfect Potluck so that you can bring your favorite holiday food. Please bring a friend and join us for worship, fellowship, and fun. RSVP is not required but deeply appreciated.

Please RSVP to Kristi Seaton.

816 309 6968

Dinner for 8 Potluck
St. Mary’s is hosting a potluck for all Dinner for 8 participants. This is scheduled for Tuesday, November 28 at 6:00 p.m. We look forward to your presence and encourage as many of your group members as possible to join us.

As we approach the conclusion of this round of Dinner for 8 in December, we are planning to form new groups at the annual meeting in January. This ministry has become a deeply valued part of St. Mary's culture and ministry. Thank you for the love and dedication you've demonstrated in nurturing a sense of belonging. We sincerely appreciate your contributions. 
Podcast: All Things Episcopal
Do you have an interest in the Episcopal Church?
How about podcasts? Well look no further...

The Campus Ministry Commission for the Diocese of West Missouri has just completed their first series of "All Things Episcopal." Here is a little bit of info about this wonderful project, as well as the link to the podcasts for your listening enjoyment.

"All Things Episcopal" is a platform to talk about the Episcopal faith and introduce some basics about the Episcopal Church, including why we do some of the things we do that may sometimes be a mystery (or even an obstacle) to those new to our church. The intended audience for this podcast is college students and young adults, especially those who may be coming from outside our faith tradition.

"All Things Episcopal" features several well-known people from our diocese, including a few episodes with St. Mary's own Justin Smith and Fr. David Wilcox.

We hope you will enjoy!
St. Mary's Survey: Deadline Extended to November 30th
As you know, we recently agreed to move forward with HolyCow! Consulting to help us plan our future. Beginning Sunday, we will be asking the parishioners at St. Mary's to participate in the first step, which is to conduct a congregational assessment. This assessment will provide a clear picture of who we are as a church and what directions are most important for our future. The tool we'll use is the Congregation Assessment Tool (CAT), which will provide key indicators of our congregational health along with areas of challenge and potential growth. It will help us to collect and understand the range of views that exist at St. Mary's and the possibilities, willingness, capacity and energy for moving our ministry into the future.

If you have provided us with a current email address, you will receive a web link to complete the assessment online. If you would prefer to take the assessment using a paper copy, please stop by the office, and we will provide one for you along with a self-addressed stamped envelope.
NOTE: If there is only one email address for all members of your household, it may be tempting to have one person take the survey on behalf of the family. However, please be sure your spouse and all young adults living in your home have an opportunity to complete the survey. INDIVIDUAL INPUT is key to our gaining insight into overall perceptions and experiences.

Please set aside enough time to answer all the questions. This will take about 30 minutes. All survey responses are strictly anonymous.

Thank you for your willingness to be a part of this congregational assessment and for helping to build the future of St. Mary's.

If you have questions, please contact Sharon Hunter-Putsch or Raja Reed.
Angel Tree
St. Mary's will be participating in
Saint Luke’s Crittenton Children’s Centers Adopt-an-Angel program.

We have been provided with "Wish Lists" for eight children currently in Foster Care.

Ranging from the age of 8 months to 16 years.

A Christmas tree will be located in the parish hall with paper ornaments. You may select gift items to provide to this cause, which will help these individuals and families have a nice Christmas.

Please deliver your gifts to the church no later than
Sunday, November 26th.
Tubs will be located on the south outside wall of the chancel.

This deadline is strict in order to deliver the gifts by December 1st.

 Some Important GUIDELINES for gifts:
  • All gifts need to be new and unwrapped.
  • If adopting an “angel,” we suggest a mix of clothing, educational and fun items.
Advent Book Study: The Lost Letters of Pergamum
Join us this Advent for a study of The Lost Letters of Pergamum: A Story from the New Testament World, a fictional account of letters discovered in the city of Pergamum that once belonged to Antipas, the martyr mentioned in the book of Revelation. While the account is fictional, the author, Bruce W. Longenecker, is a highly respected New Testament scholar who weaves reliable historical information into a fascinating story, offering a fresh, engaging, and creative way to learn about the New Testament world.

We will meet at 6:30 p.m., Wednesdays during Advent, after Mass, beginning December 6. We will share a light meal of soup and salad.

You may purchase the book here.
Lectio Divina and Centering Prayer
Place: St. Mary’s Episcopal Church in St. George Chapel

Dates: First Saturdays

Time: We will gather a little before 10:30 AM so that we can begin our time of reading and centering prayer promptly at 10:30 AM. These sessions will end no later than noon, if not before.

Lectio Divina (Latin for "Divine Reading") is a traditional monastic practice of scripture reading, meditation, and prayer, intended to promote communion with God and to increase the knowledge of God's word. Centering prayer is a silent way of opening to God's presence and action within us, beyond thoughts and words.

Both are practices that fell away from common usage except for those who were in monastic communities. In recent years, Christian leaders have rediscovered these valuable practices that were originally intended for all Christians. Ideally, these practices lead us into a more attentive and listening mode, a space in which we are more open to hear the voice of God in Scripture and in our personal lives.
To begin the first few sessions, your facilitators will be Brian Cowley, Nancy Wagner, and Deacon Lynda Hurt. That being said, this is not a study but a group exercise, in which we will all be participating as learners.

There is no need to reserve a spot but come when you can and join us in this “sitting and listening.
The Bishop Search
As the Diocese of West Missouri starts searching for the next bishop, our 47 congregations are offering a special prayer for this process.

O Creator God, giver of every good gift, look graciously on us in the Diocese of West Missouri and guide us as we discern our call of a new bishop. O Jesus, be present in our discernment, and lead us to a shepherd who will invite us to live out the Gospel every day. O Holy Spirit, inspire us with your wisdom, and kindle our hearts with the fire of your love, that we may be renewed as we prepare to welcome the ministry of our next bishop. This we ask trusting in You. Amen.
Confirmation Class
Confirmation is the sacramental rite in which candidates "express a mature commitment to Christ and receive strength from the Holy Spirit through prayer and the laying on of hands by a bishop.”

We are in the process of putting together a Winter Confirmation Class. If you are interested, please contact Fr. Sean or Raja Reed.
Vestry Meeting
The Vestry will meet on November 30th, 2023 at 5:30 PM in the AA Room,
located in the basement of the church. Members of the congregation are invited to attend.
Morning Prayer Zoom Link
This is a reminder that the Morning Prayer zoom link has been updated! If you'd like to attend the 7:30a.m. virtual morning prayer, you can click on the link found on the worship schedule page.

The zoom link is also available here.
Artist's Inspiration Hour
Artist's Inspiration Hour Tuesday's @ 6:30 p.m.

Do you have an artistic goal? Is there a medium you wish to explore? Do you find it rather hard to stay focused to explore or complete art projects? Won’t you consider joining the St. Mary’s Artists’ working group, via Zoom. We will meet weekly on Tuesday’s at 6:30 PM CST. Come to discuss an ongoing project or proposed project for which you want feedback or encouragement. Please also join us if you are looking for ideas or inspiration. 

For questions, or more information, contact Sylvia Augustus.

Click here to join.
Get Added to the Newsletter!
Have something you'd like to promote, or have any questions? Please send all of your inquiries and ideas to our Communications Coordinator, Zach Phillips by Wednesday of each week for the following week.

You can reach out to him at or by clicking here.
Lectionary Bible Study
Canceled this Week

Please turn to Track 2 at the top of the page.

This Sunday's Bible Study will gather at 9:00 a.m. to 9:45 a.m. again next week in the Downstairs Classroom, often referred to as the AA Room. Here is the link to the readings:

Check out previous sermons here!
Parish Prayer List

Mary Beveridge, Richard Herndon, Laura Moats, Bernie, Kent Howerton, Dan, Ruby, Peg, Jamie, Milo, Tracy, Meredith Pritchard, Scott Wilcox, Julie O'Rourke Zaveral, Collette Drane, Brian Hunter, Irene Gould, Nancy Warren, Mary Parrish, George Vinnie, Jeanie Lillard Frank, Bonnie Haupt, Dan, Sandra Lee, Merton Shatzkin, Matthew Plummer, Michelle, Michael, Jake, Kendra, Charlie, Corrine, Michael Frost, Shylee Bradford-Bevis, Lolit Moore, Bre Baker, Don Clark, Cathy, Sharon Johnson, Connie, Fr. John Biggs, Glenn & Darlene Moore, Marvin and Billie, Tracey & Family, David and Amore, Gio Sosa, Kait Johnson, Presiding Bishop Michael Curry. 
To add a name to the prayer list, please email Raja.
Service Times
Low Mass at 8:00 a.m.
High Mass at 10:00 a.m.
Low Mass at 12:00 p.m. (M,T,Th,F)
Private Confessions at 5:00 p.m. (Wed.)
Low Mass at 6:00 p.m. (Wed.)
This Week in the Church Calendar

Friday, November 17 | Hugh of Lincoln 1200
Saturday, November 18 | Hilda, 680
Sunday, November 19 | Margaret of Scotland
Monday, November 20 | Edmund of East Anglia, 870
Tuesday, November 21 | Mechtilde & Gertrude, 1298 & 1302 or
William Byrd, 1623, John Merbecke, 1585, and Thomas Tallis, 1585
Wednesday, November 22 | C. S. Lewis, 1963
Thursday, November 23 | Thanksgiving Day or Clement, c. 100

Click here to pray the Daily Office! Click here for information about the lesser feasts, including Mass readings and short biographies of the saints.
Clergy and Staff


Assistant Priest-in-Charge

Rector Emeritus

Sacristan/Master of Ceremonies


Parish Administrator

Communications Coordinator

Director of Music/Choirmaster
Choral Assistant



Ms. Sharon Hunter-Putsch, Senior Warden
Mr. Philip Lofflin, Junior Warden
Ms. Sylvia Rose Augustus
Ms. Erika Darling
Ms. Betty Iorg
Dr. Michael Prucha
Ms. Kristi Seaton, Clerk

Ms. Lenna Taylor, Treasurer

Postulants for Holy Orders

Dr. Brian Cowley
Mr. Richard Liantonio
To the Glory of God and in honor of the Blessed Virgin Mary
Saint Mary's Episcopal Church

1307 Holmes Street
​Kansas City, Missouri 64106


(816) 842-0975