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The Ambassador

The Newsletter of 
St. Matthias' 
Episcopal Church 

Minocqua, Wisconsin

Whoever you are, wherever you find yourself on the journey
of faith, we welcome you.

Mark Your


May 5 - 3:30-6:00 PM

Ascension Day Kite Flying,

Mass on the Grass,

& EFM Lasagne Dinner


May 14 - 9:00 AM 

Annual Spring Clean-up 


May 15 - 11:00 AM

43rd Annual Parish Meeting 


May 19 - 6:00 PM 

3rd Thursday Evensong

& Potluck 




Please remember to check the server list on the bulletin board at church (or click here to see the latest monthly schedule online).


Also, if you are going to switch dates with someone, please inform both Bill Kane and Michael Tautges at the church office.  Thank you!


Ambassador Archives


Want to read a recent issue of the Ambassador?  Just click on the links below.  (older archives can be found on our website)
February Ambassador
March Ambassador
April Ambassador

The Clarion


Curious to see what else is going on in the Diocese of Fond du Lac?  Click the logo below to view the most recent Diocesan newsletter.


From the Rector

The great French Priest Jean-Pierre de Caussade talked about taking time to be aware of our blessings in the ordinary moments of life. He called it "The Sacrament of the Present Moment" saying, "A soul can only be nourished, strengthened, purified, enriched, and sanctified by the fullness of the present moment."
At last, spring is appearing in the Northwoods! There are daffodils, crocuses, and dandelions (yes, I'm excited about them too!) in the garden outside St. Matthias' office windows. Spring is always an interesting season, jacket or shirtsleeves? overcoat or sweater? Snow in the morning followed by temperatures in the 60s later in the same day. I love it! Spring is in that liminal (in-between) space between winter and summer the classic "wait 5 minutes and the weather will change" season.
But at some point, soon, the possibility of snow really will diminish, all the trees will have leaves, and our heavy coats can go into the closet until fall. There are already nice long days with the light starting earlier and earlier in the morning then staying late into the evening, which is such a nice change after the dark of winter. Waking to the glow of sunlight easing through a window and leaving work, knowing that there is still plenty of daylight just relaxes the soul doesn't it?
What a blessing to be able to have the extra daylight, that spring and summer bring to northern latitudes, to remind us that there is more to life than the indoor world of work or school. Yes, God blesses our world every day of the year with the beauty of nature but we don't always have the time or presence of mind to see it. Spring and summer change that pattern, offering more time to see creation's beauty in the "present moment." Don't let this precious time go by without taking advantage of such a gift.
There's another gift to being able to walk away from our winter indoor world: TV's and computers stay inside. Without much choice, many have been hyper-aware of the tragedy of life this year: earthquakes, tornadoes, shootings, bombers. Such things can steal away our appreciation of the wonder and beauty that is present in every day. Walking away from constant news provides an opportunity to breathe easier spiritually as well as physically with this gift of light, and green, flowers, and abundance of life calling for attention. Sing out your praises for all that is good in the world, seek God in the beauty of the world's original cathedral, you know the one, you'll find it right outside your window. Say yes to finding peace in a moment of fresh air and give thanks.
by William Stafford
It could happen any time, tornado,
earthquake, Armageddon. It could happen.
Or sunshine, love, salvation.

It could you know. That's why we wake
and look out--no guarantees in this life.

But there are some bonuses, like morning,
like right now, like noon,
like evening.

Annual Spring Clean-up
We need your help in cleaning up the accumulated debris around the church grounds so that St. Matthias' will look its best for the warm weather season. We have had an annual spring clean-up for a few years now and it has been a rewarding activity.
With many hands, the work goes fast. Volunteers bring their own garden tools and usually finish the tasks in less than two hours. People do what they are able and every small effort adds up to making a big difference. Some people sweep. Some people rake while others remove leaves and dead plants.
Please join us again this year. We appreciate your help in keeping our grounds beautiful! Treats and coffee are provided!

You can find the sign-up sheet on the bulletin board in the Narthex.

Date:   Saturday, May 14
Start Time:   9:00 AM
Location:   St. Matthias'

Parish Updates

43rd Annual Parish Meeting
Our 43rd Annual Parish Meeting will be held immediately following the service on Sunday, May 15. Gordon will present the Treasurer's Report and answer financial type questions at 8:30, so do come early, if you can. During the regular meeting we will elect two Wardens, three Vestry members, and four delegates (and alternate delegates) for the Diocesan Convention. This year's convention will be held on Saturday, October 22, in Appleton. Please read the information supplied by those interested in Vestry positions found at the end of this newsletter. Nominations will also be accepted from the floor. A brunch will follow the meeting - the Vestry will set up, serve and clean up; however, the congregation is asked to bring the food - sign up sheet is on the bulletin board.
Ascension Day Kite Flying, Mass on the Grass, & EFM Lasagne Dinner
Please join us for our annual Ascension Day Kite Flying - 3:30 at the Berray Farm (1261 South Farming Road, in Woodruff, just off Highway 47). Bill always brings extra kites so do feel free to use one of his ... or bring your own ... and don't forget a pair of gloves! This will be followed at 5:00 by 'Mass on the Grass'. At 6:00, everyone is encouraged to have a wonderful lasagne dinner back at the church - this year we will celebrate Cinco de Mayo with Mexican lasagne! The suggested donation is $12 per person, and there is a sign-up sheet on the bulletin board. EFM has just this one fund-raising event each year - all proceeds go towards their scholarship fund. Feel free to join us for one, two or all three of the events - a great time is guaranteed!
Music Ministry Team:  Communion Sequence
Written by Le Ganschow
Throughout the season of Pentecost (beginning on Sunday, May 15), the choir will sing the communion sequence Veni Sancte Spiritus (Come, Holy Spirit) during our weekly Eucharist. This prayer is said to be "one of the greatest masterpieces of sacred Latin poetry." Its words have been attributed to several different authors dating from the 10th through 13th centuries. Beginning in the Renaissance, composers started setting the prayer to music.
Our Music Ministry Team has selected the Veni Sancte Spiritus arrangement by 20th century French composer Jacque Berthier (1923-1994). In 1955, Berthier began composing music for the Taizé community, a small village south of Burgundy that is home to a monastic community devoted to prayer and reconciliation. Over the years this community has expanded and crossed denominations. A group within the community, and the many visitors who make pilgrimages to Taizé, gather together three times a day seven days a week to pray. Berthier's Veni Sancte Spiritus is in the Taizé repertoire and one of his over 200 compositions.
This communion sequence has a simple repetitive harmonized refrain sung by the choir, and individual verses sung by soloists, with choir refrain in the background. Likely, its appeal lies in the simplicity of this meditative repetitive musical prayer and the different contrasting solo verses sung over the choir refrain.
Touchstones:  Life-long Lovers Part 1: Self-esteem Equations
Written by Diane Diederich
It seems to many people that children need parents with a fairly good sense of self-esteem themselves to help insure a child's sense of identity, no matter how old the child might be. 
I have used this page to say how we grow in self-esteem, and how to pass on that wisdom! I'll try to give you some equations that might stick with you to reflect upon.
Self-awareness + Self-acceptance = Self-esteem
Our task is to come to knowledge about ourselves. St. Catherine of Sienna stated that self-knowledge and appreciation of oneself was fundamental to holiness. The Gospels tell us that the "Kingdom of God is within you." To know ourselves is to unwrap the gift that God has given us. Often the most difficult task is to accept and appreciate what we find! Sometimes we resist self-knowledge for fear of what we might learn - God invites us to accept our strengths and weaknesses.
Self-esteem can lead to:
When self-esteem is high, hostility, competition and criticism are low and vice versa. Thus, when I look at my life, my family, my church, my neighborhood, my society and find that hostility, competition and criticism abounds, I'm led to say, "Our individual and collective self-esteem must be awfully low." Scripture says, "Good fruit comes from a good tree." If you're tired of being so critical, feeling angry so often, and evaluating others as "better-than" or "less-than" yourself, you may need some serious work on building your own self-esteem.
Balance invites us to lessen our "shoulds" - reduce our guilt. Something you might tell yourself this, "We are here for a purpose; and God wants us to be right HERE."
More next time.

TTFN: Diane
Vestry Nomination:  Emily Field

Dear all,
Please accept this letter as my nomination of myself as a candidate for joining the St Matthias Vestry.
This is the church I was baptized into, and really the only church I've ever felt truly a part of. Over the past couple of years, I have made a concerted effort to become more active in the St Matthias community. Initially by actually attending services and volunteering at the thrift shop while I was here in the summertime, to committing to more regular attendance throughout the year as well as beginning my first year of EFM. I have also, most recently, had the delight of getting to write the prayers of the people a couple of times.
What I love about St Matthias is the social justice component that I have found woven throughout our many activities and beautiful parishioners. That is, ultimately, what has facilitated my own sense of belonging in our church. And that is what I also hope to bring in my service as a member of the vestry. I offer a unique perspective given my own experience as an activist both at home and abroad, as well as my work as a public health practitioner. I'd very much like to help foster enhanced efforts directly addressing issues of racism and the social inequities that poison our Northwoods community.
Thank you,
Vestry Nomination:  Beth Jacobson

I feel I would be a good Vestry member because:
  • I have been a member of St. Matthias since 2003. I served on the vestry during the decision-making process of whether or not to expand the church and during the expansion. I helped present and create two successful fundraising campaigns during that time.
  • My involvement in the church includes two website redesigns (2010 and 2014) and ongoing website maintenance (2010-present); logo design; Caritas manager, scheduler, training/recruiting, supporting org presenter, & PR needs (2013-present); Communications Team member (present); Choir (present); Furniture Annex volunteer (present); acolyte/reader/prayers (present); Public Relations Team chairperson (past); Vestry (2005-2008); Finance Team (2008-2009); Community Table volunteer (past); Thrift Shop newsletter (past).
  • I have been involved with the Diocese of Fond du Lac, first as columnist then as editor of the Clarion. I have been a delegate to convention several times and have attended several other diocesan events. I have built relationships with the Bishops, the diocesan staff and many clergy and committee members. I would bring this big-picture perspective and those relationships to the vestry.
  • I would bring a somewhat younger voice to the vestry.
  • I am in town almost all the time! I would hardly miss a meeting. As Junior Warden I would be around to take care of building and grounds issues in a timely fashion.
Vestry Nomination:  Michael Pecore

I feel I would be a good Vestry member because:
  • I feel that I would be able to work comfortably with all current Vestry members, Rev. Erin, the Junior and Senior Wardens along with sound reasoning which will help our church to continue to grow and prosper spiritually, humbly, and lovingly.
  • I also like the opportunity to discuss a variety of topics critical to the functioning of a "working" church. To look at all the possibilities, potential solutions and "forward thinking" implications of decisions that are being considered.
  • I feel that I can bring some of the methods of critical understanding of issues and the way in which they can be thoughtfully looked at and have an understanding what affect it has on the members of St. Matthias.
  • I feel that with guidance from the Holy Spirit, thoughtful prayers by members of our church our horizon for success is boundless.
Vestry Nomination:  Jane Trotter

I feel I would be a good Vestry member because:
  • I consider St. Matthias not only my faith family but my family. I take great joy in the renewal and substance that I find both in worship and fellowship at St. Matthias, as well as service opportunities through St. Matthias.
  • I have been involved in a leadership capacity in many St. Matthias programs, including St. Francis Project, Education for Ministry (EFM), as well as organizing the Foyer Groups for the last two years and coordinating the Providence St. Mel Choir visits in 2014 and 2016.
  • Additionally, I am an active participant in WoM's, Adult Forum, and participate regularly in the worship, both Sundays and other services, as an acolyte, lay reader, as well as a worship.
- Pertinent Professional Experience -
  • Dir. of Christian Education, St. James the Less Episcopal Church, Northfield, IL 1988-1992
  • EFM - taken the program 2 times - 8 years total, as well as trained as an EFM Mentor. I am currently co-mentoring the EFM seminar at St. Matthias with Kathy Knobel, which requires ongoing adult education training approximately every 18 months.
  • VP Human Resources - American Service Bureau 1975-1978
- Other Board Experience -
  • PTA - Greenbriar Elementary, Northbrook IL - President 1 year - in that capacity I had to fill 34 board positions - a challenge, but also fun!
  • Bangor/South Haven Water Heritage Trail - South Haven MI - President of Board for 3 years 2002-2006.
  • Lakeland Performing Arts Association - Board member for 3 years, in charge of grant applications.
  • League of Women Voters of the Northwoods - a NONPARTISAN organization devoted to voters' rights and education. Currently VP on a 9-person board. This is a relatively new chapter for the LWV - and I have been with them through the formation and incorporation process.
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