My List of Blessings

As you think about writing and sending your Christmas cards this year, I share this “List of Blessings” with you.
 
My Christmas card list is more than just a way to keep track of
the special people God has brought into my life to love.
It’s a treasured scrapbook filled with pleasant memories
of all the times God’s answered prayer
through family and friends.
Every name’s a touchstone that leads to a place and time,
where God has used another’s heart
to reach out and touch mine.
It may have happened years ago or even yesterday.
But every person on my list has changed my life in some way.
Through simple conversation, a warm hug, or a shared meal,
every person on my list has helped me grow or heal,
or laugh or love or learn or smile…the blessings never end
as God allows our paths to cross as family and friends.
So please know that this greeting is more than a Christmas wish.
It’s a “thank you” card to God for putting on my list
each and every one whose name I’ve come to hold so dear…
those who’ve shown me Christmas joy each day of the year.
(Anonymous)

Bill Wilds
Adult Forum: Long Expected Messiah, Unexpected Jesus

Join us this Sunday, December 5, at 9:15 AM in the Parish Hall as Margaret Bivins leads the discussion on Long Expected Messiah, Unexpected Jesus.
Children’s Chapel during Advent

During Advent, Children’s Chapel will continue to meet on the playground at St. Andrew’s at 10:15 AM on Sunday mornings. Each Sunday in Advent the children go into the church at 10:25 where they will lead the ancient tradition of lighting the candles on the Advent wreath at the beginning of each service. They will return to the Children’s Chapel classroom in the Ferguson Street House to work on a craft related to the story from the wreath lighting and enjoy a snack before rejoining others in the church for the remainder of the service. Please note: as the weather turns colder, the children will gather inside the classroom rather than on the playground. 
Peninsula Ministry Project – Anne at St. George’s

As part of the Peninsula Ministry Project, Anne will be preaching at St. George’s this Sunday. She will be back at St. Andrew’s in time for the Annual Congregational Meeting.
Annual Congregational Meeting this Sunday

Our Annual Congregational Meeting will be this Sunday, December 5, immediately following the 10:30 AM service. We will elect new vestry members and thank those who are retiring. Current vestry members have provided reports on our accomplishments, challenges, and hopes as we look to the future. Click here to read those reports. Please take the time to read them before Sunday's meeting. Minutes of last year's Annual Meeting (2020) are available here.

Vestry Election
The following members of St. Andrew's have generously answered the call for nomination to the Vestry:
Lynda Gray
Lynda came to St. Andrew's five years ago when she moved to Newport News from New York City. She usually attends the 10:30 service and has participated in the Outreach Committee. "I have been an Episcopalian for 22+ years and have engaged actively in fundraising, working with youth, and program development. I look forward to an opportunity to serve on St. Andrew's vestry."
Leslie McNiece
Leslie joined St. Andrew's earlier this year. She usually attends the 10:30 service and sings in the choir. She is a member of the Music Discernment Committee. Leslie seeks election to the Vestry "to support the ministry during its growth and service."
Cris Oman
Cris usually attends the 10:30 service and sings in the choir. Cris serves on Altar Guild, Hospitality Team, Refugee Committee, PORT, and the Prayer Shawl Ministry. She is also a lector and acolyte. Moving to Newport News three years ago, Cris visited St. Andrew's, and "I knew I had found a home and church family. This church follows Jesus' path better than anywhere else I have ever worshipped."
Paul Orrison
Paul has been a member of St. Andrew's for 20 years. He usually attends the 10:30 service and is an usher. Paul seeks election to the Vestry to "assist in the furtherance of St. Andrew's mission."
Dialogue with the Vestry
Our recent practice with annual meetings has not included time for conversation among parishioners and parish leaders. Beginning this Sunday, we are going to change that. The vestry wants and needs to hear your thoughts; and then use your hopes, suggestions, and concerns to help shape our priorities for the coming months. To that end, we have developed a set of questions for you to consider prior to December 5 so that we can talk about them together at the annual meeting.

As you know, our parish mission statement is St. Andrew’s: Building God’s kingdom through worship, outreach, and fellowship. Please prayerfully spend some time with the questions below and come prepared on December 5 to engage in a dialogue about them:
  1. How are we doing at living into our mission? What’s going well? What’s not going well?
  2. What should we do to address the challenges we are facing?
  3. How are we doing at loving one another – offering each other grace and forgiveness; reaching out across our political/social/economic divides; not only welcoming but also intentionally including new or unfamiliar people in our parish activities and fellowship?

Beginning in 2022, there will be two congregational meetings each year, spread six months apart. That will give us a chance to engage in a long-term conversation, with vestry leaders listening closely to your input at each meeting and then reporting back to you six months later about how we have addressed your comments.
The Tidewater Community Writing Center opens this Sunday

The Tidewater Community Writing Center (TCWC) has moved into St. Andrew's Outreach Center and will hold its grand opening on Sunday, December 5 from 2:00 to 5:00 PM. TCWC is a partnership with Christopher Newport University’s Alice F. Randall Writing Center and the Center for Community Engagement and will offer support for writers of all backgrounds and abilities, for writers working in professional, creative, or personal capacities. It will be open every Sunday from 2:00 to 5:00 PM. To book an appointment or if you have questions, please email tidewaterwritingcenter@gmail.com.
Adult Parish Advent Party this Sunday

The Adult Parish Advent Party will be this Sunday, December 5 from 5:00 to 7:00 PM at the home of Al and Rachel Roby, 900 River Road, Newport News. Bring a holiday hors d'oeuvres to share and your favorite holiday beverage. No need to R.S.V.P. If you're a newcomer, by all means, join us! You don't need to bring a thing. Everyone else, please bring your favorite holiday hors d'oeuvre and beverages. Hope to see you there!  
CNU Exam Snacks on Dec. 10

Would you like to bring a smile and some cheer to Christopher Newport University students during the stressful midst of exam week? St. Andrew's parishioners will hand out Exam Snacks on Friday, December 10 from 10 AM to 12 PM at the David Student Union Breezeway.  Come join us! If you're interested in helping or would like more information, please contact Melissa Sale.
PORT Homeless Winter Shelter volunteers needed

St. Andrew’s is participating in the PORT Homeless Winter Shelter at Sts. Constantine and Helen Greek Orthodox Church on December 13 and 14. There are still a few openings that need to be filled before these dates:

December 13:
  • Greet/Check-in (1)

December 14:
  • Breakfast Team (1)
  • Check-out (3)

If you can help, please contact Matt Deller at pablodeller@outlook.com.
Just a reminder! What should I do with my offering?

On your way into the church, please put your offering into the baskets located in the center aisle at the River Road entrance to the church. Midway through the service, we bring our offerings forward to remind us that in the Holy Eucharist, we both receive God and offer ourselves to God.
Bible Women of Christmas: A Zoom conversation with author, The Rev. Lindsay Hardin Freeman
Advent can be a wonderful mix of emotions: joy, delight, and anticipation. Sometimes, however, as we prepare to celebrate the miracle of Jesus' birth, we may find ourselves consumed with too many details, and even worse, sorrows of years past. So, in this time of joyous anticipation and somber reflection, what to do about those mixed emotions? Look to the women of the Bible, especially the strong, bold, outspoken women directly connected to Jesus' birth: Hannah, Mary, Elizabeth, and Anna. Collectively they dealt with the death of a son, the death of a spouse, harassment, infertility, fear, anxiety, and grief. Think of them as your spiritual grandmothers, your guides in traversing difficult ground. If we ignore their stories, we miss out on a literal host of resources — and just perhaps, a richer Advent.

Join a Zoom Conversation on Thursday, Dec. 2 at 7:00 PM with The Rev. Lindsay Hardin Freeman, author of Bible Women: All Their Words and Why They Matter, as we discuss the Bible Women of Christmas. Register in advance here. After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.
Outside Wind Quintet concert on Dec. 12 to benefit PORT

Everyone is invited to a concert of Christmas music by The Outside Wind Quintet on Sunday, December 12, at 4:00 p.m. The concert will benefit PORT Emergency Winter Shelter of Hampton Roads. The concert will feature traditional and contemporary arrangements of some of our favorite Christmas carols. Donations will be accepted and all proceeds will benefit PORT. Visit the Facebook page for this event: www.facebook.com/outsidewinds

If you can’t be here for the concert you may still make a donation. Make checks payable to St. Andrew’s with “Outside Wind” on the memo line.
Our love and sympathy
are extended to the family and friends of

Mary Randolph Scott "Ranny" Waddill
who died November 25, 2021
Click here for Ranny's obituary

David Lee Short
who died November 23, 2021.
Click here for David's obituary

“Let light perpetual shine on them, O Lord.”
Fellowship Group sign-ups due by Dec. 12
In 2022, we will be offering a new opportunity for Christian fellowship, this time in people’s homes: Fellowship Groups. Each Fellowship Group will consist of 8 to 12 St. Andrew’s parishioners who meet together once a month for six months simply to share a meal and get to know each other.  Individuals, couples, and families are all welcome to sign up to take part in the Fellowship Groups, which will then be randomly assigned in order to ensure a mix of ages, new and longtime parishioners, men and women, and as much racial diversity as we can muster. Once members have been assigned, each group will decide on its own calendar of gatherings and pick their own sites. Members might decide to take turns hosting dinner at their homes or to meet at restaurants. The goal of Fellowship Groups is simply to deepen our fellowship with each other, which inevitably strengthens the Body of Christ. Please take part! To indicate your interest, simply call or email Ann Turner, parish.admin@standrews-episcopal.org or 595-0371, by December 12. 
Upcoming at St. Andrew’s
The church calendar is available on our website here.

Wednesday, December 1
5:15 PM - Centering Prayer (Parish Library)
6:00 PM - Choir rehearsal (church)

Thursday, December 2
7:30 AM - Centering Prayer (Parish Library)
10:00 AM - Bible Study (Parish Library)
2:00 PM - Holy Eucharist at The Chesapeake

Sunday, December 5
8:00 AM - Holy Eucharist (in person)
9:15 AM - Adult Forum (Parish Hall)
10:15 AM - Children's Chapel (Playground)
10:30 AM - Holy Eucharist (in-person and live-streamed)
11:45 AM - Annual Congregational Meeting (church)
5:00 to 7:00 PM - Adult Parish Advent Party (Home of Rachel & Al Roby)

Tuesday, December 7
1:00 PM - Crafters Group (Parish Library)

Wednesday, December 8
11:00 - Holy Eucharist with Healing
5:15 PM - Centering Prayer (Parish Library)
6:00 PM - Choir rehearsal (church)

Thursday, December 9
7:30 AM - Centering Prayer (Parish Library)
10:00 AM - Bible Study (Parish Library)
Service Participants – Sunday, December 5
 
8:00 AM Service
Lector & Prayers: Mary Poole
Acolyte: Bill Wilds
Greeters: Rossie Hampton
Ushers: Conway Sheild, Terry Wolak
Sound: Laura Harper
 
10:30 AM Service
Lector: Judy Carey
Prayers: Pat Woodbury
Acolyte: Lindsey Nicolai
Greeters: Butch & Peggy Woodall
Ushers: Rick Donaldson, Chris Robinson, Al Roby, Bob Wharton
Sound: Leah Klinger
Camera: Jay Lambiotte
 
December Altar Guild:
Becki Shamblen, Gloria Brooks, Barbara Lewis, Mary Poole, Cris Oman
December Flower Guild:
Allison Clock, Grier Curtis, Bobo Smith, Charlotte Vaughan
We're here for you!

What if I need to reach the parish clergy or staff?

What if I have a pastoral emergency or know of someone else who is ill?
Call or text Anne directly at 804-687-5396.