A Message from Rev. Paula+
| Beloved Community,
Have you ever had the experience of saying something because you know it to be true and then finding out, after you've taken your own words to heart, how thoroughly and completely true it is? My vacation last week, though only a few days, is one of those "Take your own advice, Paula, you'll be glad you did" experiences. The time with my parents, Kathleen, Daisy, and the ocean, with only prayer, knitting, books, and walks to occupy my time was exactly what I needed, though, to be honest, a bit more of it would be nice. It is true - in that simply profound and incarnational way - that taking the time to refresh and replenish our souls is one of the greatest gifts we can give ourselves, not to mention the way it can nourish and support our relationships with others.
Several times during my vacation last week and my retreat last month, I was reminded of the creation stories in which God rests on the seventh day. In these crazy times, in a country in which we value work and its outcomes in ways that encourage overwork, it is important to remember the rhythm of the life of the One in whose image we are created and in whose likeness we live to become. Taking time for sabbath, retreat, vacation is so important and, somewhat paradoxically, it actually increases our productivity and creativity. We are not infinite beings, with infinite capacity to go, go, go. We need to rest, replenish, restore, if we are to have what we need to be our best selves and to live faithfully with each other. Apparently, God was on to something...
Peace & Blessings,
UPDATED - Connection and Common Worship
All of the information you need to remain actively connected to St. Stephen's can be found on the website under the "Living Our Faith in a Time of Pandemic" tab on the top left. In addition, the ways to join in worship and other activities is also available on the Events Calendar on the website, under News & Events. Our worship services will be posted to
every Sunday morning at 8 AM and will be available on our
. The services can be watched at any time.
Our Sunday worship service is also broadcast on HTTV (Comcast TV 36 and Verizon TV 33) at 6 AM and 1 PM. Please be sure to spread the word to your friends and family who do not use the internet.
Audio recordings of the homilies are found
The bulletins can be found
FYI - St. Stephen's is on Facebook EVERY DAY! Join us, and tell your friends and family! Posts include daily prayer, Sunday worship, Children's Chapel on Saturday, and Children's Storytime with Rev. Paula.
Beginning July 29th, daily prayer is at 8:30 am on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. On Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday, it is at 7:45 pm. Most days, Rev. Paula will lead prayer live, though occasionally it will be a "Prayerful Interlude" or a recorded reflection.
Videos of all the posts can easily be accessed from the Facebook video library right
We are planning to host Drumming Camp on Monday and Wednesday, August 17 and 19 from 12 PM - 6 PM. Two fun afternoons with drumming and dancing with Ya'Yah, art projects, games, pizza lunch and dinner.
If you would like to help out, please contact
. Because of the need for extra caution due to the corona virus, we are looking for adult volunteers only and those without complicating health conditions.
Bishop Hughes' July 22nd Vlog
("Be strong, and let your heart take courage, all you who wait for the Lord")
can be seen
The Voice Online
may be found
Bishop Hughes' pastoral letter on the
guidelines for in-person worship
in the Diocese of Newark can be found
To read Bishop Hughes' Covid-19 guidelines, as well as other news from around the diocese, look
Share Your Prayers
Bishop Hughes invites all of us to do something that might be a first for us - to write down our prayers during this pandemic and share them with the diocese, as a way to help each other.
The prayers will be shared on the diocesan website in The VOICE and on social media.
Prayers can be sent to Canon Wright at email@example.com for posting. Please include the name and town of your church.
Diocesan Memorial Wall
A holy place in virtual space for mourning and memory.
This is a place to gather, grieve, reflect and honor the lives of those who have died during the time of the Pandemic, whether or not it was due to the virus. Because we have been isolated, and unable to be with each other to provide comfort, care and support during this time, we offer this site as an ongoing memorial, gathering the names of the dead so that they are not forgotten.
Here, we who mourn can cast our tears into God's almighty and loving hands, whose own tears join ours, bringing us consolation, peace and hope.
To visit the wall and/or submit a name, click
In this time of national upheaval, outrage, and fear, The Episcopal Church's Department of Reconciliation, Justice and Creation Care and the Office of Government Relations have assembled resources to assist individuals, congregations and communities seeking to LEARN, PRAY and ACT.
Please use and share these resources, and send your own resources and stories to firstname.lastname@example.org.
You can find the link to current resources here.
Read Presiding Bishop Curry's Word to the Church here.
FEAR NOT, Kaleidoscope Summer Online Institute
This event is for church leaders, community organizers and individuals who are seeking ways to engage an increasingly polarized and fearful world through reasonable and constructive dialogue about race relations, social justice and other important issues of our time. We are bringing together spiritual leaders to provide insight and guidance and community leaders who want to see things differently to provide gracious time and place for truth-seeking dialogue that can achieve non-violent mutual understanding.
The Summer Online Institute will take place via Zoom, on
August 3 -13 from 9 to 11:30 a.m. Pacific Time
. As always, we are offering Gracenomics pricing to allow participants to pay what they can for this event and in support of our ministry. Details about the workshops, guests and registration information is available at
THE RED RIBBON PROJECT AT ST. STEPHEN'S
If you happen to be driving or walking by the church, you'll see a simple way to show support for racial justice. Stop and tie a red ribbon on the fence, joining with others in the community who have already done so. (Ribbons are provided.)
While this will not result in a tangible change, it might just encourage someone else's change of heart, which is the first step to the kind of change that can literally change the world.
St. Stephen's Zoom Events
Sundays at 11AM
Watch the service at 10 AM, grab a cup of your favorite beverage, and join the fun. We'll be around from 11 to noon.
Send an email to Rev. Paula at
by 10:45 AM that morning to request the login information. Don't be surprised to find yourself in a waiting room. Barbara Riedel or Rev. Paula will let you in.
Youth & Teen Resources and Events
POP UP YOUTH MINISTRY
The Episcopal Pop Up Youth Ministry is for all youth grades 6-12. Fun events are hosted via Zoom on Sundays at 4 PM. These events include themes like Scavenger Hunt, Escape Room and Trivia Night!
Follow POP UP Youth Ministry on Facebook and Instagram @popupym
Questions? Email email@example.com
CROSS ROADS CAMP & RETREAT CENTER
Our friends at Cross Roads Camp & Retreat Center are providing activities for kids and teens including art projects, virtual camp-fires and more!
For all the details, follow the Cross Roads Facebook page
and follow them on Instagram @crossroads.camp.
SUMMER CAMP BOXES
As the week-long camp programs come to an end, Cross Roads is excited to announce that CAMP BOXES are now for sale! Each camp box comes with materials to do multiple camp activities at home, as well as exclusive access to additional videos, some camp swag, and Bible study resources. You can get details and purchase a Cross Roads camp box
FOOD PANTRIES ARE IN DESPERATE NEED OF FOOD!
Thank you to all who have dropped off donations already! Please keep the contributions coming
and remember to check the expiration dates before sending your items.
Apostles' House Food Barrel - A weather-proof collection bin is located at St. Stephen's outside under the roof of the Narthex parking lot entry door. Canned goods and non-perishable food items can be dropped off at any time and will be delivered to Apostles' House.
North Porch Women & Infants' Centers - A second collection bin for North Porch is located at the same door. Right now they are in urgent need of the following:
- Enfamil 12.5 oz powdered baby formula and soy formula, and Enfamil infant (yellow label) 21.1 oz
- Diapers especially Large sizes - 4, 5, 6, and Pull-ups of all sizes
- Baby wipes
- Jars of baby food - all ages- fruit, veggie and 1st foods
3. Online Ordering/Donations - If you are unable to drop off items at the church, and would like to contribute, you can make purchases and/or donations online directly to these organizations. PLEASE NOTE: North Porch prefers you use their AmazonSmile link for direct product donations.
North Porch Women and Infant Centers
North Porch Amazon Smile direct link:
The Apostles' House
Food Pantry link:
, Holy Trinity Church, West Orange
St. Stephen's will be hosting Christine's Kitchen again on August 15th.
Yes, folks, it's that time again! Full service at the kitchen is still on hold so it is still LUNCH-TO-GO.
Please reply to Deryck with the type and number of lunches you will be donating.
You can also do hot lunches but this might require you to come to the kitchen to prepare each lunch on request.
Lunches can be dropped off at Deryck's home at 44 South Pierson Road Maplewood NJ before 10:30am on 8/15.
Here are the requirements for the contents of the lunch bags:
- Sandwich - type labeled on the bag, or hot food in plastic container
- Dessert - use your judgement, probably should be bagged separately if messy
- Fruit - if wet like watermelon, you will need to put it in a plastic bag
- Drink - can of soda, iced tea or plastic water bottle, try to avoid glass
- We can add whatever else we want, granola bar, etc.
Deryck recommends 10 to 15 of the above lunches per volunteer in order to make the 125 lunches that is the current ask from the soup kitchen staff.
Flexibility: No need to commit to all items above if for instance you can only do drinks and not sandwiches, we can fill in the gaps and take care of the bagging too if needed.
Please see the guidance below from the soup kitchen for the lunches to go.
Guidelines for SANDWICH lunches to go:
- In each lunch, there should be a sandwich, a fruit, a granola bar, a dessert, and a drink.
- There should be at least three types of sandwiches from your host group (e.g. roast beef, turkey, ham, Italian, corned beef, tuna, chicken salad, veggie wrap, falafel - you decide.
NO peanut butter & jelly).
- Label each bag with the type of sandwich. Group the sandwiches by type.
- Deliver them to Holy Trinity between 11am and 11:15am on Saturday.
- If some of your group want to stay, they are welcome, or you can drop off the food and go. Holy Trinity volunteers will be available to set up, hand out lunches and clean up.
Guidelines for HOT lunches to go:
- Arrive with cooked food and takeout containers at Holy Trinity between 11am and 11:15am on Saturday.
- Please have at least four volunteers who will be staying until 1:15pm.
- You may use the kitchen to keep food warm and to assemble the lunches into takeout containers.
- Holy Trinity volunteers will hand out the lunches at the Franklin Street door.
(The "hot lunch" guidelines assume that the food needs to be heated and served. If it's packed and ready to go, you can drop it off like the bagged lunches).
Resources from the Diocese and Beyond
|There are many, many resources available to parishes and individuals to help sustain our faith practices during this unprecedented time. This is by no means a complete list, though it does cover many areas of need.
NEW!!! Faith@Home, a ministry of Forward Movement Publications and Forma, a ministry of the Episcopal Church Foundation, offers weekly lectionary-based readings and reflections for all age groups. You'll find those resources here.
The Diocese of Newark has a page dedicated to pastoral messages, informational updates and directives, and resources for use by parishes and people of faith. You'll find it here.
The Episcopal Church, nationally and internationally, has information on its website, including pastoral messages from Presiding Bishop Michael B. Curry. You'll find it here.
The National Cathedral livestreams worship and hosts podcasts, all of which can be accessed here.
The Church Publishing Group has made available a free downloadable copy of
The Book of Common Prayer. This is a wonderful way to encourage both a personal prayer discipline and as a support to online worship in which the liturgy is from the BCP.
Now might be the right time to sign up for a daily, weekly, or monthly devotion. A couple of our favorites are:
- The Society of St. John the Evangelist. The brothers offer wisdom in many ways so please do explore their website.
- The Center for Action and Contemplation, home of Richard Rohr. As with SSJE, this is a rich offering of resources so it is best to explore the website.
St. Stephen's Prayer List
Please keep the following St. Stephen's family members and friends in your prayers...
The McManus Family
The Blanchard Family
Bernard & Nathan
The Fitzgerald Family
Sara Ruth Dorn
Links to the Wider Church
Giving with Tithe.ly is easy, with options for one-time or recurring donations. We encourage you to consider it at all times, but especially when you are away for any reason, like all of us now with the restrictions due to coronavirus.
There are two ways to do it: thru
app on your smart phone. You'll want to search for St. Stephen's Church Millburn. Be sure to have the correct punctuation. You'll know you're there when you see: St. Stephen's Church Millburn and the address. Once you're at the church's page, follow the prompts.
Office Hours and Contact Information
Office hours: Until we are through this public health emergency, there are NO office hours. Please call Rev. Paula to arrange for pastoral care or if you have any reason to come to the office. She'll work with you to figure out a safe way to manage this.
Main email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Doreen Schindler, Parish Administrator
can be reached at ext. 32 or
The Rev. Paula J. Toland, Rector can be reached at ext. 21 or