St. Christopher's Newsletter, October 28, 2021


A Celebration of Life for

Ruth York

October 29th at 4 pm in the Memorial Garden

A short service of Committal in the Memorial Garden and in lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made to St. Christopher's Episcopal Church, earmark for Outreach.

A Message from Mother Carey

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Dear St. Christopher’s Family,

Welcome to that spooky time of year when pumpkins cast a gleam from front steps and children in capes wander our streets. This year I am so grateful for the freedom to play - even if it means keeping a little further apart and making my mask part of my costume!

The connection between All Saint’s Day and Halloween is woven in our ancient Celtic roots. The Celts celebrated November 1st as the start of a new year, the end of the harvest and the beginning of the winter. They believed it was a liminal time, a time when those who had died could cross back and forth between worlds.

Christians coming to Ireland brought with them a new celebration called All Hallow’s Day. Hallow which means “Holy,” was a day to remember those great Christians who had died. Our Halloween, celebrated at the transition of October and November then, is a blending of All Hallow’s Day and this time of thin space where those who lived are especially present to those who loved them. “Eeen” is simply the “evening of” All Hallow’s day.

We still celebrate All Hallow’s Day but call it All Saint’s Day. On this day we remember the Saints who were once a part of our lives and in the life of our church and the Saints who are among us today. 

This weekend at St. Christopher’s we will celebrate Halloween with a Spooky Violin concert and Trunk or Treat for local children in our Hanover parking lot. And on November 7th we will honor All Saint’s Day by reading the names of loved ones who died this year, rejoice with a beautiful choral Evensong and be part of the creation of a new Saint – when we baptize Saint Gigi at our 8 am service!

God has given us much to rejoice over and to celebrate in this year of change. On this Halloween/ All Saint’s Eve let us celebrate with joy even as we remember with thanksgiving those who have graced our lives and shown us the way.

Peace, Mother Carey

Stewardship 2021


Our 2021 pledge campaign is here! Please click the link below to download your online pledge card. If you'd rather complete your pledge card with pen and paper, don't worry--we have "hard copy" packets in the church.

Blessings and thanks,

Marifran Bustion

Stewardship Chair Lead

Pledge Card 2021
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Stewardship Pledge Update for week 6

My apologies to Longfellow and all my English teachers!

Listen my children and you shall hear

Of the mid-autumn drive for pledges dear.

On the fourteenth of November in 2021

We shall bless the pledges of those which are done.

With 39 pledges of $204,004 now in our coffers

We need a few more or flying saucers

Will land on our grounds

And make too many mounds.

So gather up all ye with pledges

To keep us from going over the edges.

Marifran Bustion, Stewardship Chair,

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Marifran’s Musings as Senior Warden 

And we continue with fun after a weekend at Shrine Mont where 33 people hiked, read, talked, slept, played games, had much music, ate well, and had a very spiritual weekend in the mountains. The next activities are Spooky Suzuki and Trunk or Treat (Oct. 30), an evening of chili with kids of all ages (Nov. 12), lobster dinner (Nov. 13), Live Nativity with a camel and other animals (Dec. 4). Several worship services are planned for outside our normal Sunday morning and weekday services—a service of Committal for Ruth York (Oct. 29), baptism for Gigi DiGilio (Nov. 7), confirmation with Bishop Susan Goff (Dec. 12) and a reception to follow. Advent is coming soon with the Chrismon Tree service when Bishop Susan is here, Christmas Eve service and Lessons and Carols. During all these activities, everyone is welcome and encouraged to participate. Although we have some protective restrictions in place, such as social distancing and wearing masks, we very much want to see you at worship and at fun activities. Unless you’re ill, and you probably wouldn’t want to go outside anyway, we really want to see you. Marifran Bustion,


Spooky Suziki , Saturday, October 30 at 4PM. (Church)

Trunk or Treat, Saturday, October 30 at 5PM. (Hanover Parking Lot)

We still need volunteers to decorate their vehicles.

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This is Preschool science and music teacher Monica Perz with the new paw paw trees the preschoolers put in below the church building for Tree Awareness Day.

(Pictures by John Quinn)


St. Christopher's Tree Appreciation Day Celebration! On Saturday October 23rd, St. Christopher's celebrated Tree Appreciation Day with a series of events. Parish members, along with Master Naturalists from St. Peter's of the Woods Episcopal Church, and drop-ins from the community, first experienced Forest Bathing, where participants used all five senses to connect with the natural environment in St. Christopher's northern woods area. Later, a Fairfax Master Naturalist led an informative tour of the wonderfully diverse trees and shrubs on our campus, mostly old but some new ones too. Finally, participants planted a few new Virginia Native trees on our campus. Our St. Christopher's Preschool was involved in this celebration. On Friday October 22nd, Preschool science teacher and Arlington Master Naturalist Monica Perz got the kids involved, teaching lessons about trees and planting three Virginia native paw paw trees in the area between the church building and the Monticello parking lot. Many thanks to all who participated in and helped orchestrate this event!

Growing Up in Mussolini’s Fascist Italy:

The Story of Andrea Marcello Meloni

Author Presentation

November 4, 2021 at 7PM

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The RSVP deadline is Sunday, October 31st


    St. Christopher’s own Christine Meloni will be talking about her fascinating book on Thursday, November 4th at 7 pm in the Education Building’s big room. All parishioners are invited to hear how she researched and fleshed out the very personal memoir her beloved husband Andrea wrote about growing up in Mussolini’s Italy. Andrea’s own story is interwoven with historical context and informative photographs and illustrations.

    The book is available on in paperback or Kindle and on in softcover or e-book. Editions in Italian and French are also available on

    Please RSVP to Janet Quinn ( if you are attending as space is limited due to COVID protocols. Please note if you need a ride to the church that night.

Holy Hike 10 a.m. Saturday, Nov. 6 at Burke Lake

 Mostly flat, totally local and a lot of fun — that’s what you can expect at our next monthly St. Christopher’s Holy Hike at 10 a.m. Saturday, Nov. 6 at Fairfax County’s most popular park, beautiful Burke Lake. We’ll meet at the marina boat launch ramp and enjoy a leisurely 4.7-mile stroll around the lake. Pets on a leash are welcome, so bring your furry friends. Again, on a leash. They’ll love you for it. Along the way, we’ll cross the dam with a gorgeous panoramic view of the lake with its waterfowl and people. If we’re lucky, we might even see a giant American bald eagle roosting atop a tree, keeping watch over the scene. We’ll walk near the miniature train tracks that during non-COVID times carry train loads of joyous kids and adults. If you’re into exercise, there are a series of exercise stations to add to your fitness. Ought to be a great time, as our first few hikes have been. If you would like to sign up and let us know you’re coming, that would be excellent. Just click here. Park entry for Fairfax County residents is free; for non-residents, it’s $10. For more information, contact Jim Bradshaw at

Upcoming: Saturday, Dec. 12 – Fairfax County’s “Mouth of Accotink Creek” near Fort Belvoir.

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November 7, All Saint’s Day

We remember loved ones who have died in the past year by reading aloud their names. As we do so, we hold them in our prayers and we give thanks for their lives. We find strength in their faith and the faith of all the saints, those known to us and those known only to God. You are invited to add the names of persons who have died in the past year by emailing by Sunday, October 31, 2021. 


November 12, Chili bar / chili dog/ hot dog Youth Gathering

Friday, November 12, 5:30- 7:30 PM

Building on the success of tie-dye and s'mores making, lets gather for chili, and games. All youth welcome, from toddlers to older. Something for everyone. Smore's making at the end. Always a treat!

Kindly ask if coming, please consider bringing an item for the chili bar. Some suggestions are: Fritos, avocados, chopped onion, grated cheddar cheese, sour cream, corn bread, but open to more.

Come, enjoy, bring a friend!

Megan Coffey


Mark your calendars now! November 13

Lobster Dinner!

On Saturday, Nov. 13, we’re bringing back the annual lobster dinner, with a few changes. It will be held outside, around fire pits. We will provide lobsters and baked potatoes, and ask you to bring sides or dessert to share, your own drinks, and your own chairs (although we have plenty if you forget). This year we’re not providing chicken or hot dogs, but hope to bring those back next year. As we’ve done in the past, you may order lobsters to take home, whether you eat with us or not. Please sign up with Danny Gorham, so he can order enough and get them here in time to cook. The cost is $20.00/meal—the price of lobsters has gone up. And, we need volunteers for helping cook, set up, and clean up. Please contact Danny or Marifran,, for questions, to volunteer, or to pay. Thanks, and we hope to see you there.


Christmas Pageant

St. Christopher’s is planning on having an in-person Christmas pageant this year at the 7 p.m. Christmas Eve service. All youth are invited to come and participate. Just a couple of rehearsals with a schedule to be sent in the next few weeks. 

Plenty of costumes and roles for all!  Including drop in, no speaking parts by sheep and angels who might be in town at the last minute. We’ve very excited and hope all youth will consider participation. 

If interested in more information, please contact Megan Coffey at

St. Christopher's Preschool Fundraisers


Monday, November 15th, 4-8 PM

7108 Old Keene Mill Road

Springfield, VA 22150

Chipotle Fundraiser for SCC Preschool. 33% of event sales get donated to the school. Order online for pickup using code 9WK47TW or show this ad in restaurant/ let them know your purchase is for SCC Preschool.

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St. Christopher's Preschool is collecting gently worn, used, and new shoes to help raise money for their school.

Starting 10/26 through 12/17 please bring in your shoes. Bins will be outside at drop off and pick up during school hours.

Don't forget to ask friends, family. neighbors and co-workers to donate too! We need to reach a hundred shoes in order to raise funds for our school.

Contact the Preschool Office for any questions at 703-451-1088.

Premature Babies In The NICU Are Getting Cuddles From Cute Crochet Octopuses

Knitters Wanted for NICU Octopus! If you would like to help and knit, here is something that will warm your heart. Premature babies are getting some extra cuddles and attention from stuffed octopuses. The babies have to spend much of their time in incubators or hooked up to monitors. The octopuses are not just small and soft (perfect for little hands) but the tentacles mimic the umbilical cord in the womb, which some babies cling onto while they are in mama’s belly.

Hence, holding on to the octopus tentacles helps them to feel safe and secure, just like they did in utero. These octopuses can help babies feel calm, leading to better heart rates, stronger breathing and improved oxygen flow in the blood. If you want to participate and crochet some octopuses for the preemie babies at INOVA Alexandria Hospital, below you can find the pattern for the octopus and drop them at church in the bin marked “NICU Octopus”. They will be delivered to INOVA Alexandria Hospital by Doug Gudakunst. 

Download NICU Octopus Pattern
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Newsletter Submissions are due on Wednesday at Noon

Email your announcements to Nina at

Thank you

St. Christopher's Episcopal Church

6320 Hanover Avenue

Springfield, VA 22150

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