News from St. Paul's Episcopal Church
As seems the norm for northern Illinois, we had essentially a "spring break" of about 10 days - that is, we went from a rather late winter to 10 days of spring and right into summer. Spring functions around here as an interim season, it seems. Would that spring could " string - or- SPRING us along" for longer. The weather the last week or so of May made me feel right at home, that is, in the heat and humidity of Memphis and the Mississippi Delta, which I thought I had moved away from. And it's only June.
Speaking of June, the weeks of June in Pentecost this year are a mix of miracles, parables, and conflict at home and abroad for Jesus. He begins his healing ministry, getting into trouble - he "catches heat"--with the religious authorities already for healing people; calls his disciples; catches more heat at home for healing people; tells the parable of the sower; and walks on water.
Like our Lord, though it is summer, you all still are active in your work with and for God. Though you may "catch heat" for it, you help others heal who have been wounded by our world (or worse, wounded by the Church). You bring other leaders and ministers into the fold. You plant for God's kingdom, you tell each other the stories of the journey, and you do the amazing things with the power and gifts and talent God gives you. Like Jesus and the disciples, though our program schedule is less robust, you all are preparing for the next phase of your calling as a community of faith.
While a lot of our programming winds down to a whisper for summer, many of our operations and your ministries hum along at their seemly dispatch of "Steady On". The office will continue our regular hours and efforts weekly. Vestry continues meeting monthly. All services sing God's glories undeterred, including our 8am liturgy on the 2nd and 4th Sundays, and the weekly 1030am Eucharist (all praise to our Sunday ministers: altar guild, flower guild, ushers, lectors, intercessors, acolytes, Eucharistic ministers, organist and pianist, and Coffee Hour maître d's). We will continue the monthly services for the residents of OakCrest. Children at the 1030 service may continue to experience fun and adventure in the safety of our nursery. The garden will continue to both grow and be groomed by our "Green Team". Planning meetings for the upcoming program year will yield riches. Groups such as the Children's Waiting Room will continue to meet and plan so that children can be cared for in safe locations while parents are in court. The Search Committee will venture on apace to find St Paul's next rector; hold the Search Committee high in your prayers as they enter a less public phase of their work. Indeed, heat notwithstanding, each of you of this parish will continue to do God's work through St Paul's for this area.
As I tried to do last summer, I want to meet with each of you for (iced) coffee, lunch, or at whatever time and over whatever food or beverage we can arrange. It seems time to take stock one on one of St. Paul's past year and what it has meant for you. Fortunately this interim time has been longer than the hasty dispatch of spring, but interim seasons evolve steadily despite our desire to either shorten or lengthen them. God's work gets done by each of you apace, with aplomb, with heart, and with depth of soul. Indeed, these are the days you all will remember, and your very best days lie ahead still. Let's meet one on one and talk about where your next days will take you.
From the Senior Warden
Whew! May has been quite a busy month. And for a small church, St. Paul's really knows how to energize and get things done! It was just amazing to see how many folks turned out to help at this year's Lobster Boil - our 50th boil. What a great day, and I am awed by and grateful to everyone who worked so hard on the Lobster Boil Committee and the Publicity Committee, as well as all our congregational members, friends and family members who came out on May 19th to cook, bag and deliver lobsters to our customers. It is always a fun day, but it does take a lot of planning, coordination and hard work to make it all come together. Thank you, thank you, thank you all for all the fantastic team work!
But Lobster Boil isn't the only thing going on around here. I am seeing all kinds of things happening. At the beginning of the month, the Endowment Committee hosted a well-attended luncheon to inform us all about the history of our endowment, and how we can keep it going and growing. And May has kind of turned into "Appreciation Month" here at St. Paul's. When I look at the list of ministries that are active in the church, I am bowled over. Everyone contributes so generously in one way or another to sustain our church home. Again, team work is what makes St. Paul's work.
Plans are also being made for the upcoming program year, which will begin in September. The Adult Formation Committee and the Fellowship Committee have been meeting and planning things like "Episcopal 101", sessions of "TED Talks and You", family movie nights, possibly a Super Bowl party. In order to make these types of presentations and gatherings possible, though, we need to procure a much larger screen TV for the Parish Hall than what we currently have. Plans are in the works for some fundraising activities for this purpose. Watch for a letter coming to your homes in the very near future which will talk about these ideas.
So, although the summer months are often a bit more relaxed, there are still plenty of activities and opportunities to serve going on at St. Paul's. I encourage you to continue to attend services regularly when you're not vacationing or out of town. Things are a little more "laid back" when the weather warms up, and if you've ever considered trying out a new ministry, this summer might just be the time to do so.
From the Junior Warden
A few things I've been busy with...
- Attended the May Vestry meeting on 5/20
- Attend the Vestry exec meetings on 5/11 and 5/23
- On 5/11 and 5/29 I participated in the adult formation meetings with the group to discuss the different activities such as Episcopal 101. Ted talks and you, Movie night, Book club and ideas on how to do a calendar that would have all the future activities.
- I meet with Lorraine who is leading the research on a big screen tv and sound system on 5/24 and 5/29 to discuss different options.
- Attended the Vestry retreat held at my house on 5/12. Beth did a great job facilitating the retreat.
|The Treasurer's Report
will appear in July's Mars Hill Proclaimer
Thank You, St. Paul's Adult/Youth & Children's Choirs!
Awesome Epiphany, Lent, Easter and Pentecost 2018!
The Adult/Youth Choir shared two beautiful and inspirational
and Thomas Pavlechko's "Panis Angelicus" with Organ and Piano.
for an Awesome Year!
[Ava, Liam & Luke Stubblefield]!
In addition to The Children's Choir singing and dancing down the isles with an awesome
I'm goin'-a sing when the Spirit says sing", they made there Bell Choir debut with a resounding Jacque Berthier "Jubilate Deo!"
The Choirs are off for the summer months of June, July and August.
Please join us in September.
If you enjoy the arts such as singing, playing an instrument, acting, dancing, drawing, as
well as, the art of oratory, please come and join our artistic work and fellowship!
May at St. Paul's
Lobstering at Hyvee
The Garden was ready Recognition Sunday -
(but the weather wasn't) "Exceeding Expectations"
"The asparagus is ready!" says Linda Lorbach, "and quickly growing to the fern stage." Plants are growing rapidly with the recent heat. Be sure to come over and check for produce that might be ready soon.
Weekly garden gatherings started Tuesday, May 1st, and continue every Tuesday at 4:30 PM to weed, plant, water, harvest and have fellowship. Of course, any gardener can come at any time to help with the caretaking.
Adult Christian Formation
Ideas are in the works! The committee has met several times and more plans will come! Watch for more news about a big screen TV to take advantage of various programming.
The Search Committee met with Father Conrado of the Diocesan Office on Tuesday, May 8th. The search is now in earnest and our real work begins soon. We will begin receiving our applications from the Diocese about ten days before June 30.
Everyone should be aware that the Search Committee must maintain strict confidentiality on all information received concerning the candidates until a recommendation is made to the Vestry and the candidate accepts the position. No information can be released before that point. The Search Committee also received instructions on the procedures involved for preliminary screening of applicants, Skype interviews, and in person interviews.
It is vital that the Search Committee make the best possible efforts at discernment for each of the candidates so that the best candidate for St. Paul's Episcopal Church in DeKalb is the one recommended to the Vestry. I assure all of my fellow parishioners that the members of the Search Committee take this task with the utmost seriousness. Please include us in your prayers as we begin this last and most vital task.
A Message of Love
at The Royal Wedding
Michael Curry's Impression
on The Bride and Groom
he bishop preached first and foremost to the royal couple themselves-about their marriage and the work and witness they have said they want to offer.
As the Episcopal Church's presiding bishop Michael Curry stepped up to the lectern of St. George's Chapel in Windsor Castle Saturday to deliver an "address" for the wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle, one friend watching the livestream, like me an Episcopal priest, posted this on Facebook: "The joy of The Most Rev. Michael Curry v. 600 Polite English Scowls. Who will emerge victorious?"
A BBC commentator clearly made that call, saying afterward, "That was a sermon!" It was not the dull "address" most wedding-goers-or even churchgoers-are used to. Despite the giggles and stares of so many elegant guests in the chapel that day, Curry electrified the world with his message of the power of love and the gospel of Jesus to change the world. Both
have been posted on websites as varied as National Public Radio, the Today show, CNN, Essence, Town and Country, and a motherhood blog called Romper. Curry may have bested Billy Graham with the size of the audience that listened to him preach the good news of Jesus Christ-about 30 million people, not counting all those who have watched in the days since.
Some in my social media feeds criticized Curry for preaching too long (13 minutes), for "yelling," "taking advantage of the situation," "showboating," preaching "histrionics," and for being "too liberal" about God's love. Many more were filled with delight and joy at his description of love as "a way of life" and "a world where love is the way," not something "sentimental" but "power, real power."
Curry offers quite a contrast to most clergy who make the news-Robert Jeffress, for instance, who led prayers for the opening of the U.S. embassy in Jerusalem and has drawn criticism for his frequent public condemnations of Jews, Muslims, Catholics, and Mormons. Or, on the other hand, to pastors as portrayed by many movies and plays as corrupt, ineffective, or crippled with doubt and emotional problems. (Recently, the conservative church humor website the Babylon Bee posted
a satirical headline
that declared, "Episcopal Priest Forced To Resign After Revealing He Believes In God.") A pastor and preacher who truly believes in love and in Jesus Christ is a shock to the world! Curry seems to have awakened an increasingly secular world to the possibility that God is not as dead as most have thought, that Jesus is alive and well and dwelling in the hearts of many intelligent and admirable people, that the church may not be entirely so judgmental or irrelevant as they had thought.
Curry brought not only the living word of God but the fullness of his personhood as a black American and a descendant of enslaved people into that chapel, a veritable fortress of historic, institutionalized, church-sanctified white supremacy. He is the first African American to hold the highest office of the Episcopal Church, a denomination that was the church home of many slaveholders, including half of the 12 American presidents who owned slaves. Curry's identity as a black man brought realism and painful integrity to his message-invoking Martin Luther King Jr., the faith of "some old slaves in American's Antebellum South," Roman Catholic renegade Pierre Teilhard de Chardin, and the beautiful and gripping cadence of traditional African American preaching. Diane Evans of the Guardian
put it this way
: "It was a sermon that will go down in history as a moment when the enduring seat of colonialism was brought before the Lord, and questioned in its own house. In the mention of slavery was the inherent accusation of white silver-spoon complicity, and that this union should not go forth without acknowledging it."
It was a momentous moment for many Christians, for the Episcopal and Anglican church, for the royal family, and yet still and most importantly, perhaps, for two people.
In an interview after the ceremony
alongside Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby, Curry commented, "I've been ordained a long time... when you [preach at] a wedding, [I've learned, you] talk to the couple." In the end, he wanted to be sure he was preaching to the two of them, about their marriage and the work and witness they have said they want to offer to Britain, its Commonwealth, and the whole world. It's a witness made clear simply in the fact of their marriage-a white prince of a colonial superpower and a biracial, divorced woman from its most famous breakaway province.
And so, Bishop Curry made an impression not only on people around the world, but on the bride and groom, as anyone can clearly witness in their listening faces on the video footage. I wish I could say that I'd ever preached a wedding sermon that drew any reaction from a groom like that Prince Harry gave, when after Bishop Curry sat down, in full view of the cameras, he mouthed the word, "Wow!"
OF BISHOP CURRY'S SERMON
Reminders from the Parish Office
Rector's Discretionary Fund is collected the first Sunday every month. These funds are used to help people in need in our community. The next collection will be on
June 3, 2018.
Food Pantry Sunday
is the second Sunday of each month. You can bring your food any time and place it in one of the baskets. Non-perishable food items and monetary donations can be dropped off any Sunday, or at the Parish Office. Please make all checks out to St. Paul's with "Food Pantry" in the memo line. The Food Pantry Sunday coming up is June 10, 2018.
Proclaimer Deadline: The deadline to send information for the monthly newsletter is the third Sunday of every month. Please send any information you would like to see in the July 2018
issue of the Proclaimer to the Parish office by June 17
Your pictures are also welcome.
meets every month. The vestry minutes are available on our website here.
The Parish Office hours are Mondays through Thursdays, 9:00 A.M. to 2:00 P.M.
Flowers for the Altar
Dates are open for your dedications.
The 2018 flower sign up sheet is next to the bulletin board outside the kitchen and dates can be selected for all months during the year. Generally the donation is about $30 for a Sunday.
Celebration of Holy Eucharist
at Oak Crest,
Wednesday, June 20th, 2 PM
This service includes music, readings, a short homily and communion. If you would like to be involved in the important outreach of our parish, please join the Reverend Ed at OakCrest on these third Wednesdays of the month.
On April 8th, 300 diapers, 39 food/personal items were collected. Year to date donations total 2785 items.Th
to all parishioners who contributed to Food Pantry Sunday. The next Food Pantry Sunday will be May 13, 2018.
St. Paul's has adopted the 1st Thursday of every month to help at the Salvation Army Food Pantry from 9:00 AM to 12:00 Noon. Please contact Pat McMahon if you can help out in these months or can substitute in other months.
Items in large demand are diapers (size 4 and up), canned or fresh fruit, pet food and personal care items (toothpaste, shampoo, bath soap, etc.).
Contributions may be made at any time during the month, not just on the second Sunday.
I wanted to thank everyone for their prayers, thoughts, and well wishes after my surgery. I especially want to thank Father Ed for staying with my family at the hospital during the long surgery. Everyone was so very supportive of me and my family's needs before and after.
Love to all,
nniversaries & Birthdays
6/7 Sean Sitzes
6/23 Colin Prall
6/28 Kenneth Sitzes
6/30 Theodore Faulkner
6/30 Everett Faulkner
6/6 Deb and Jordan Meyers
6/22 Vince and Pat McMahon
6/27 Cliff and Marilyn Cleland
6/3 10:30 AM Service
6/4-7 Father Ed on vacation
6/5 Garden Meeting, 4:30 PM
6/10 8:00 AM and 10:30 AM Services
6/12 Garden Meeting, 4:30 PM
6/17 10:30 AM Service
Vestry Meeting, 12:15 PM
6/20 OakCrest Service, 2:00 PM
Children's Waiting Room, 3:00 PM
6/24 8:00 AM and 10:30 AM Services
6/26 Garden Meeting, 4:30 PM
Save the Date
9/9 Rally Day and start of Sunday School
St. Paul's Episcopal Church Contact Information
St. Paul's Episcopal Church
900 Normal Rd., DeKalb, Illinois 60115
The Reverend Edward T. Bird IV, Rector
Parish Office: (815) 756-4888
Parish Fax: (815) 758-6140