A community reshaping itself to be fit for God's purpose.

Thursday, January 30, 2020
Discipleship is a matter of participation
We’ve just had our Annual Meeting for 2020. The collective feedback from Sunday is, wow! Thanks to the skills of David Brookhart you can view the Treasurer’s and Warden's Reports as PowerPoint presentations. While this is not new, the style of John and David’s Church Wardens Report was a first and I suspect will now be a tradition setter. Pictures of empty chairs relate to the retirement in early 2019 of both Missy Bennett and Gordon Partington. Other slides clearly express the age-old adage that one picture is worth a thousand words. Mary Gray’s Treasurer’s Report concisely sets out the good financial news. So do take time to sneak a peek here .

Of course, no St Martin’s event can really succeed without an army of folk beavering away behind the scenes. Our profound thanks to the Hospitality Ministry that always rises to the occasion. This year’s Annual Meeting Brunch was excellent! Thanks also to the staff for whom the lead-up to the Annual Meeting is always stressful. Thank you also to the ministry team leaders who reported on their ministry activities in 2019.

We speak of ourselves as members to describe belonging to the Church because member is the cultural word we use to speak about belonging to any nonprofit. But the Church is so much more than a nonprofit and our allegiance to it so much deeper than, say, membership of the tennis club. As Episcopalians we find it hard to take ourselves seriously as disciples on the road with Jesus – which strikes us as too challenging an image. 

In Mark, Matthew, and Luke, Jesus instructs his disciples to: follow me. I prefer John’s account where Jesus asks instead: what is it you want? I guess the first disciples don’t really know what they want. So, Jesus simply says: come and see! The first disciples were very much like us in that we often find it difficult to articulate exactly what it is we want from faith. Jesus’ invitation to come and see is helpful in this regard - as it’s an invitation to participate, even if you are not sure what you believe. At St Martin’s, we stress the invitation to participate because participation opens us to the experience of belonging together. For many of us, it’s out of the experience of participation - of belonging together - that believing begins to take shape.

You can hear my assessment of the community as we enter 2020 here. But to briefly summarize, at St Martin’s, if you come and see you will discover we are in good heart. Energy is high, finances are strong, and our membership is renewing itself with newer members keen to participate in community. As we move further into 2020, the challenges are great, but so, too, are the opportunities! In 2020, I encourage us to be more curious about where our journeying together on the discipleship road may take us. Come and see.

See you in church this Sunday!

Knitting Ministry Meeting
The Knitting Ministry will be holding a meeting on Saturday, February 1, from 12:30 to 3:30 pm in the Stearns Room. The Prayer Shawls created by this group will be blessed on Sunday, February 2, at the 9:30 am service.
Hospitality Committee Meeting
Hospitality Committee members will be meeting upstairs at 11:00 am (after Coffee Hour) on Sunday, February 2. Please join us! If you have questions about either the Knitting Ministry or Hospitality Committee, please email Natasha.
Episcopal 101
Saturday, February 8,
8:30 am - 12 pm, Stearns Room
Mark+ will be holding a teaching session on Episcopal-Anglican History, The Book of Common Prayer, Anglican Spirituality, and the Eucharist. Anyone who would like to know the answers to some important questions but have been afraid to ask is welcome.
Providence Lost
Wednesday, February 12, 7:00 pm
Providence Lost is a 30-minute documentary film by Oscar Dupuy d'Angeac, which highlights the housing crisis in Providence. It tells the story of the Trottier family's eviction from their Providence apartment and subsequent spiral into homelessness. Mark your calendars and join us in the Great Hall for the showing of this poignant film and discussion to follow. For more information and to register, please click here.
Estate Sale Coming Soon!
Save the date! St. Martin's next Estate Sale will be held Saturday, March 7 and Sunday, March 8. Start your spring cleaning a little early and set aside some items you don't need anymore, then donate them to St. Martin's. Items that sell best include small furniture, lamps, art work, decorative pillows, dishes, and glassware. All proceeds go to support St. Martin’s Church and its ministries. Watch for details to come.
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St. Martin's Church | 50 Orchard Ave, Providence RI |02906
(401) 751-2141