The Weekly Draft

St. Thomas' Episcopal Church

November 16, 2023

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The Twenty Fifth Sunday After Pentecost 10 am Bulletin November 19, 2023

Dear People of St. Thomas',

We had a glorious Thanksgiving feast last night at Supper, Song, and Prayer and I want to thank everyone who cooked or brought something to share. I especially want to thank Jon Ward, and Pam and John Holley who prepared the turkey. It was delicious!

As I think about all the things for which I am thankful, I want you to know that I am thankful for this church. For its worship and witness, for its community and learning, for its wisdom and care of one another. I have seen that in action time and time again, and it can be easy to let such everyday moments pass by without comment or notice. But I don't want to do that here, I want to say how thankful I am for our church. 

Together, we are building the kingdom of God here in our little corner of the world. Each and every one of you is helping to do that in your own way. If you ever need a new opportunity, let me know, for they abound! And don't forget to tell your friends about why you're thankful for our church, too. In such sharing there is a powerful invitation. 

May your Thanksgiving celebrations be blessed, whether they are large and chaotic, or small and quiet. May you know the love of family and friends, and feel the loving presence of Christ in your life. GIve thanks with a grateful heart.

God bless you!


Fr. Ryan+

This Week at St. Thomas'

Music Ministries

The Twenty Fifth Sunday After Pentecost November 19, 2023


Prelude  Prelude on "Simple Gifts" - Wayne Kerr

Processional Hymn "O God Our Help in Ages Past" - 680 ST. ANNE

Hymn of Praise "Glory to God" - WLP 900

Psalm 90: 1-8, 12 Psalmnary - James E. Barrett

Gospel Acclamation “O Christ, The Word Incarnate" – 632 MUNICH

Offertory Anthem "All Good Things" - arr. Douglas Wagner

Presentation Hymn  "Praise God From Whom All Blessings Flow" – OLD 100TH

Sanctus "Holy, Holy, Holy" WLP 859

Fraction Anthem "Lamb of God" S161

Communion Hymn "We Gather At Your Table Lord" THE EIGHTH TUNE

Processional Hymn "Come Labor On" – 541 ORA LABORA

Postlude "Now Thank We All Our God" - Piet Post

Music Notes

It has been a pleasure to take up the happy task of leading the music at St. Thomas just two weeks ago! There has been a vast amount of institutional information to absorb in addition to planning late Pentecost, Advent and Christmas music for a choir that I do not know and is rapidly changing. In the coming weeks I hope to have more time at the organ bench. 


The choir is growing, with three new members in the past two weeks. Please look out for them at coffee hour this Sunday to thank and welcome them. In conversations with my church musician colleagues, we surmise that many people who turned to singing in the shower during COVID have not returned to the church choir. Consider this your personal invitation to contact me if you would like to know more about the choir at St. Thomas. Young people from the age of 13/14 are welcome.  


Be sure to submit your request for the Saint Nicholas Carol Sing that will take place on Wednesday, December 6. The last day for a submission is Sunday, Dec. 3. Provide your request via email to, or add your written request to the envelope that will be found on the hallway door of the choir room. 


Lastly, a word of thanks to the St. Thomas staff for their help with my arrival and acclimation to new systems and customs. A special thanks to Mary Mellstrom who has provided music librarian services and to Everett Jennings who prepared an impressive and lively accompaniment to the gradual hymn last Sunday. 


Ruth Cobb

Youth Ministry

St. Thomas’ offers sacramental rites (Baptism, Communion Basics, Confirmation), Feasting on the Word for Grades 1-5, Truthseekers class for Grades 6-12, guild apprenticeship ("Behind the Scenes"), and fun activities throughout the school year. The nursery is staffed at both Sunday services during the school year. For an overview of our youth program, check out the website. Go to Formation > Youth Ministry.

Save the date! The first Christmas pageant planning meeting will take place

during Sunday School on Dec. 3rd.

Click here to download the December youth schedule

We made it to Hogwarts and back! If you'd like to read the final letter to St. Thomas' students who participated in the "Learning Faith with Harry Potter" class, click on the button below to download the pdf file. There are also laminated copies of the letters in the back of the church. The "first years" letter is for elementary school grades, and the "fifth years" letter is for middle and high schoolers. Thanks for coming, everyone!

Download the Owl Post

Sundays 9am in the Guild Room (take a left after you enter the parish hall). Coffee will be provided.

God Help Me!

A Group for Parents

Kayla and Jonathan Mitchell invite parents of nursery and school-aged kids to meet between services for an informal, layperson-led conversation. The idea is to share the highs and lows of the week, then discuss the gospel for the day - all while the nursery takes care of the kids.

Diocesan retreat in December

All 9th-12th graders are invited to attend the Happening retreat December 1-3 at DaySpring. Happening is created to allow space for high schoolers to have an experience that strengthens their personal relationships with God. Throughout the weekend, students will experience talks, skits, and worship that allow them to think about the ways that they see God working in their lives. All high school youth are eligible to attend. 

Click here to register for the high school retreat 

Truthseekers' Class Recap (Grades 5-12)

Hi All! This past Sunday (11/12), we talked about the other 2 sections of the TaNaK/Old Testament (the Prophets and the Writings). We talked about who the Biblical prophets were - people who spoke God’s truth, shared God’s covenant expectations with the Israelites, and what God’s response to the Israelites’ behavior would be. They often demonstrated some strange behaviors, which were meant to be illustrations of God’s message to them (baking bread over a pile of poop?!) 


We also talked about the Writings section of the TaNaK, primarily focusing on Solomon’s works. Solomon was a king of Israel, the famous King David’s son. When Solomon became king, he asked God for wisdom to rule over the Israelites and God blessed him with incredible wisdom. He is often considered the wisest person who ever lived! Solomon wrote the book of Proverbs, Ecclesiastes, and the Song of Songs, all of which has been read by and influenced millions of people over the centuries.


Although we barely skimmed the surface, we are wrapping up the TaNaK/Old Testament. Next week we will head over to the New Testament and talk about the Gospels, and for our final lesson of the fall semester we will talk about the New Testament letters.


Have a great week!

Mike & Gina

Feasting on the Word (Grades 1-5)

This coming Sunday, class will meet at 10am in the Library: Matthew 25:14-30. Bold Acts. Children will discover in the parable of the talents that they are to act boldly as God’s children. Teacher: Geordie Stutzman


Click here for Luau Tickets!

Deadline to purchase tickets is Wednesday, November 22nd!

Your Stewardship Committee is seeking sponsorships for silent auction baskets for the Mele Kalikimaka Luau. A portion of the proceeds from the auction will benefit victims of the Maui fire. You may make a monetary donation or a product donation. The baskets we have planned include:

  • Grill Master Basket
  • Bourbon & Bowties Basket
  • Teacher Basket
  • Major League Fun (Tampa Bay Rays) Basket
  • Ice, Ice Baby (Tampa Bay Lightning) Basket
  • Soccer It to Me (Tampa Bay Rowdies) Basket
  • High Tea for 8 at Waterfront Home
  • Girl Power (girls aged 6 – 12) Basket
  • Live Local (St. Petersburg products) Basket
  • How Does Your Garden Grow? Basket


Sign-up sheets will be available after church services on Sunday, or you may contact Linda Sordan (727-709-2242) or Beverly Littlejohn (727-804-6199). Mahalo!

Pastoral Care

Eucharistic ministers/visitors -instead of meeting in the chapel in November, let's go out for lunch right after church on Nov. 19.

Send me ideas of your favorite lunch spots. Details in the next Draft.

Longest Night service - save the date!

If you are looking for a way to honor the memory of a loved one during the holidays, come to our Longest Night service at 7pm on Thursday, December 21st, in the Chapel next to the Church.


The list of names in the Prayers of the People will be published in the bulletin every week and in this section of The Draft.

If you would like to have someone's name mentioned in the prayers during a Sunday service, before the service, write the name(s) into the notebook on the lectern (the podium) on the Prayers of the People's page. These names will only be read at that service. To add someone to the long-term prayer list, contact Grace.

Long-term prayer list: Dona, Geoff, Sharon Joanne, Tara, Anne, Ed, Yvonne, Howard, Marcia, Ann, Jean, Jan, Pat, David, Billy, Carolyn, Brenda, Marissa, Katrina, Joe, Cindy, John, Sharon, Joey, Mike, Nancy, Anne, Donna, Michael, Tricia, Joyce, Susan, David, Charlie, Don, Robert, Estelle, Doug, and Gina.


Next Sandwich Sunday will be on December 3 - We'll meet in the parish hall to make sandwiches between the 8am and 10am services. All ages welcome! I deliver them to Robin Taylor at Isaiah's Place. All ages welcome. - Mother Anne

Thanks to all for your help with Pack-a-Snack at St. Thomas' Episcopal Church


Pack-a-Snack Volunteers for the Week of November 12th:

Purchasing: Laura & Bill Vrooman

Staging: Linda Davis, Marilyn Smith

Packing: Men's Bible Study Group, 11/15/2023

Delivery: Nancy Day, Thursday, 11/16/2023

*Double order to accommodate Thanksgiving Break*


Pack-a-Snack Volunteers for the Week of November 26th

Purchasing: Laura & Bill Vrooman

Staging: Linda Davis, Marilyn Smith

Packing: WOW!, 11/30/2023

Delivery: Julie Songster, Thursday, 11/30/2023


Pack-a-Snack Volunteers for the Week of December 3rd

Delivery: Lee Coryell, Thursday, 12/07/2023


Special thanks to Jack and Mary Jane Cartier for their generous donation to Pack-a-Snack. Their gift helps this St. Thomas' ministry in curbing food insecurity for our community's most vulnerable children. We much appreciate the Cartier's gift!

Adult Formation

Women of the Word meet on Thursday mornings at 9:30 in the Founders Room.

We will be using a new devotional book “Move” by local author Amy Scott. The devotions are based on Joshua.

Please contact Julie Songster for information, 737-420-6839. 

Men's Bible Study - Wednesdays 7:30am

Art Ministry


Virtual Happy Hour

Please join us on Thursdays from 6 - 7:15 pm. Connect through Zoom:

Meeting ID: 969 2031 5905

Password: 06182020

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Happy Birthday Blessings this week go out to: Matt Davidson, Norm Dobiesz, and Jonathan Mitchell.

Happy Anniversary blessings this week go out to:

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Lay Minister Schedule

Acolytes: David Gould, Jace Viera, Pippa Forrester

Acolyte 8am: Rob Carter

Altar Guild: Pat Bernfeld, Beth and David Gould

Camera Operator 10am: Jackson Ball

Coffee Host: Ellen Burkhart

Flower Guild: Marilyn Lanctot, Pam Holley

EM 10 am: Dudley Savage

Healing: Joan and Bill Barns

Lector 8am: Beth Gould

Lectors 10am: Jack Day, Angie Ford

Musicians: Chancel Choir

Oblations: Joan and Bill Barns

Prayers of the People 10am: Joan Barns

Ushers 10am: Teri Andrés Coryell and Lee Coryell


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View the Whole Calendar

Parish Calendar

Friday, November 17

Saturday, November 18

Sunday, November 19-Twenty Fifth Sunday After Pentecost

8:00 am - Holy Eucharist, Rite II, Spoken

9:00 am. - Truthseekers (Founders' room)

9:00 am - God Help Us! A Parents Group (Guild room in Parish hall)

10:00 am - Holy Eucharist, Rite II, Sung 

Chancel Choir

Monday, November 20

9:00 am - Morning Prayer

Tuesday, November 21

9:00 am - Morning Prayer

Wednesday, November 22

7:30 am- Men's Bible Study

Thursday, November 23

Happy Thanksgiving

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