A Message from Rev. Paula+
Beloved Community,

This week in the office has been "one of those weeks."  You get my meaning, right?  A week in which it seems that nothing I set out to do went without a glitch.  We had computer and phone issues.  We needed to call in the locksmith to fix a broken emergency egress lock.  We were working on all of the somewhat mundane behind the scenes stuff that is necessary to keep the parish going. And, to top it all off, it is also the week the annual parochial report is due.  This is the mandatory reporting to the diocese and national church about membership numbers, attendance at Sunday services, and finances.  Although it is important to our understanding of the health and vitality of The Episcopal Church and one of the data sets that is used to decide mission strategies and such, it is probably fair to say it is one of the least favorite parts of parish ministry for most clergy.  And yet it has to be done, so we do it.

While working on it this week, and if I am to be truthful, doing so with less than a joyful heart, with thoughts that this is not why I went to seminary and jumped through all the hoops on the way to ordination running through my head, I was interrupted by a woman who came in to talk to me about a personal concern.  I'd never met her before, so I was a bit surprised and had absolutely no way of anticipating where the conversation would go or how it would turn out.  And I am aware that the sudden transition from the highly detailed work I had been doing to talking with someone didn't feel as seamless as it usually feels for me.  At first I found it hard to ignore the ticking clock that was reminding me so loudly of all the things I needed to get done.

And then it happened!  The wise, wild, and wonderful Holy Spirit cracked it wide open, cracked me wide open.  Suddenly I saw - in that top-of-your-head-to-the-tip-of-your-toes ways of seeing - that this time with her is exactly why I went to seminary and jumped through all the hoops on the way to ordination.  The privilege to just be with someone, to listen to them with your whole heart, to acknowledge their pain and their hope, is what makes all of the mundane daily, weekly, monthly, and annual work worth doing.  True, the gift of getting to be with people often means the work we planned to do gets pushed aside or delayed and we need to rethink our plan.  True, too, the gift of connection to others is one of the surest signs of God's grace.

Peace & Blessings, 
Paula+
News
North Porch Baby Shower will 
take place at coffee hour on 
Sunday, March 24. North Porch provides emergency baby needs to low income mothers throughout 
the diocese. You can help by  contributing the following items:  Enfamil 12.5 oz. powder (regular & soy formulas), diapers (Large  sizes:  4, 5,  6), Pull-Ups (all sizes), baby wipes, baby food jars of fruits and vegetables (all ages) and First Foods. 

Cynthia Moriczde Tecso, diocesan coordinator of North Porch, will 
speak  briefly at the 10am service 
and be  present during coffee hour.
Please join us in this annual event. You can place early donations in the collection box in the narthex or bring
them to the coffee hour. You can
 also donate financially. Checks 

should be made out to North Porch Center.

Check Out Our Updated Website: We are in the process of sprucing up our website, which now has an updated logo and home page.  This is part of our effort to reach out to the wider community to let people know what we are doing and to invite them to join us.  Did you know people "visit" social media 5 - 7 times before visiting a church in person?  P.S. We are also now on Instagram @ststephensmillburn - follow us!

Meet Our New Bishop: You, your family, and friends are invited to "Break Bread with the Bishop." Five gatherings with Bishop Carlye Hughes are being held at locations around the diocese. Find out more and RSVP online at: 
Rev. Paula is going to the gathering at St. Paul's, Chatham on March 19.

Pledge Envelopes: To request pledge envelopes for 2019, please see Fran Taber, and add your name to the list she is compiling.
Lent and Holy Week Services
Ash Wednesday,  March 6:
6:00 to 8:45 am - Ashes-to-Go, Millburn Train Station
12:00 pm  - Eucharist with Imposition of Ashes
7:00 pm - Eucharist with Imposition of Ashes

Maundy Thursday, April 18:
7:00 pm - Eucharist with Foot Washing & Stripping of the Altar
8:15 to 10:00 pm - Vigil

Good Friday, April 19:
12:00 pm - Proper Liturgy for Good Friday with Administration of the Reserve      Sacrament
8:00 pm - Proper Liturgy for Good Friday

Don't forget our Lenten series!  Beginning March 10th, for six consecutive Sundays after the 10:00 am service, we will study the parables, basing our conversation on a book by Amy-Jill Levine, Short Stories by Jesus: The Enigmatic Parables of a Controversial Rabbi.  The book is great but not necessary to this study.  You will need the Participant Guide, which is available at  Cokesbury  and Amazon  for about $10.00.
Events
Vestry Meeting

Ashes to Go, 
Millburn Train Station
Eucharist w/Imposition of Ashes
Eucharist w/Imposition of Ashes

Pre-School Committee Meeting

Diocesan Church Leader University,  
St. Elizabeth's, Ridgewood

Lenten Series


Breaking Bread w/the Bishop,
St. Paul's, Chatham (Rev. Paula attending)

North Porch Baby Shower 


Celebration of New Ministry
Sunday, March 3, 11:30 am

Wednesday, March 6, 6:00-8:45 am
Wednesday, March 6, 12:00-1:00 pm
Wednesday, March 6, 7:00-8:00 pm

Thursday, March 7, 7:30 pm

Saturday, March 9, 9:00 am


Sundays, March 10, 17, 24, & 31, April 7 and 14 at 11:30 am

Thursday, March 19, 6:30 pm



Sunday, March 24, 11:00 am Coffee Hour

Saturday, March 30, 2:00 pm

Schedule

This week: March 3, 8:00 am

Reader & Chalicer: Carole Francis
Altar Guild: Carole Francis

This week: March 3, 10:00 am

Readers: Jean James, Barbara Churchill, Peter Wick
Chalicist: John Scharff
Ushers: Shaun & Lisa Landers
Altar Guild: Jean James
Coffee Hour: Open

Next week: March 10, 8:00 am

Reader & Chalicer: Allison Walker
Altar Guild: Julia Dorn

Flowers: Allison Walker; In thanksgiving to God and in memory of Aunt Marion, Omar, Miss Connie and Carolyn

Next week: March 10, 10:00 am

Readers: Fran Young, Theresa Scharff, Katie Wade
Chalicist: Eric Maurer
Ushers: Steve Moran, Martin Hirshfeld
Altar Guild: Alex Cole
Coffee Hour: Open
Lectionary

This week: March 3rd
 

Next week: March 10th
Links to the Wider Church

The Episcopal Diocese of Newark







The Episcopal Church









The Presiding Bishop








Office Hours and Contact Information

Office hours are Tuesday thru Friday, 10:00 am to 1:30 pm or by appointment.
Phone: 973.376.0668  
Fax: 973.376.4002
Website: ststephensmillburn.org
Main email: church@ststephensmillburn.org
Follow us on:  Facebook and Instagram

Doreen Schindler, Parish Administrator can be reached at ext. 32 or
church@ststephensmillburn.org.

The Rev. Paula J. Toland, Rector can be reached at ext. 21 or 
rector@ststephensmillburn.org.
She is an occasional blogger at fromthestillness.