St. Paul's Episcopal Church   Poughkeepsie, NY 12601

"Making friends while serving God"

The Week of March 23-29, 2020

St. Paul's needs your financial support
even when we're not having church
Even though we are shut down in most obvious respects our church's expenses are largely ongoing. Your giving for the support of the church is more necessary than ever. Even though the collection plate does not get passed in front of you, please remember your pledge to support St. Paul's so we can be solvent and operable on that fine day when we can return to normal operations.
Pledge envelopes can be dropped off at the church, delivered through the mail slot, or mailed.

These are the guidelines for volunteers

News from the Food Pantry
Our first week of operation of the St. Paul's food pantry under conditions of social distancing and other safety measures was carried out efficiently and cheerfully by our dedicated pantry volunteers. New signage has been posted to assure that clients and volunteers understand and apply the rules of engagement during this corona virus experience. Everyone is doing their part to be gracious and responsive.

We need your help!
This special notice tells clients how we need them to prepare themselves for doing business with the food pantry.
Hand sanitizer is in short supply at the church. If you have some extra, please bring it by the pantry during operating hours, 10 am-2pm Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. We exhaust our supply quickly with every client using sanitizer and volunteers washing their hands and using sanitizer multiple times during each shift.

Question of the week
Do you lack  paper products?
It may be an issue that no longer is of great concern. But are you able to get the needed paper products to maintain a safe and sanitary home? The question has been raised and discussed within our parish family. It was suggested that those with extra paper products might share and that others might buy extra when (if?) they see it on the shelves and donate some to the parish.
So if you need some, have some, are willing to donate some or are willing to shop for extra (when available) please let us know at We'll keep this conversation going in the Messenger as long as there are replies.

Revival: the promise of God  
In times of trouble people turn to God for help. Sometimes to communicate their dismay. Sometimes to describe their fears. There are even times when people think they should let God know what it is they think God should do about their difficulties. At other times it is anger at the cause of their problems they wish to voice. And it may be inappropriate to share that with anyone but the Almighty.
These days we are faced with a changed world. Our lives have been turned upside down by concern over and fear of the virus and by the institutional responses to the pandemic that have led so many to stay safe in their homes, stay away from work, and otherwise live their lives in a mostly solitary and isolated manner. It is anything but normal.
Each of the forms of intercession described above fit very well in our prayers these days. We are frustrated. We are unsure. We want to do our part but there is quite a bit of confusion even about what that is.
Just like last week, just like most weeks, we have been given a set of lectionary readings that guide us both in our prayers and in our lives. If we take a moment and read the lessons we see that there are tips and clues and straightforward directions on what to do in times of trouble. In our collect we pray, "Grant your people grace to love what you command and desire what you promise," suggesting we should 
This week's readings
look to God's will more than our own, and trust in God's plan. In the Ezekiel reading about the Valley of the Dry Bones we come to understand that God can revive a people who lost their way, even those whose bodies were reduced to broken skeletons. Our psalm reinforces this notion, declaring, "I wait for the Lord; my soul waits for him; in his word is my hope." Our Gospel reading is the raising of Lazarus. We observe the necessity of faith if we want to enjoy the active engagement of God in our lives, our troubles and our dreams.
Our reading from the Letter to the Romans attests, " set the mind on the Spirit is life and peace." And that is our heart's desire as we try to find new ways to love God and our neighbor in these awkward and difficult and changing times. 
To be redirected to the Lectionary Page and get a digital copy of the readings 

Ezekiel 37:1-14; Psalm 130; Romans 8:6 -11; John 11:1-45

Online services are being planned
Because of the danger of transmission of the virus, our church is closed for regular services until May 17. That is a long time to be without church and to go without visiting with friends after services. Recognizing this difficulty the Vestry voted in an online meeting Monday, March 23 to explore using online services via Facetime, zoom or other services.
Check your email in-box regularly to see if the regular edition or special editions of the St. Paul's Messenger have up to date information on internet-provided services. Meanwhile, as noted last week, online services are listed on the website of the Episcopal Diocese of New York,

Cancellations and postponements

In light of the prohibition of services until May 19 certain activities and services have been cancelled by your vestry. They include:
            -- our popular Lenten Seder with Rabbi Dan Polish
            -- the Easter Vigil scheduled for April 11 at St. Paul's
            -- both 8 and 10 am Easter services April 12
For the same reason, the afternoon service planned for April 19 celebrating Father Tyler's ministry at St. Paul's and the special buffet dinner following the service are being postponed until parish life returns to normal. There will be plenty of notice given when that time comes.
All other meetings and activities have been suspended until further notice with the exceptions of our food pantry and our Community Transition Center tenant.

Fund raising for Bike N Build 
and Gillian Prater-Lee's adventure

Before the coronavirus restrictions the Vestry voted to authorize a well-publicized special collection for Bike N Build. It was to be in support of Gillian Prater-Lee's West Coast ride this summer, her and her family's long involvement with the organization on its many trips through Poughkeepsie and the organization's work in support of affordable housing. With the limitations imposed by the virus we invite and encourage parishioners to support the ride of this delightful young woman and the organization by writing a check and delivering it to the church. The check's may be made out to St. Paul's and noted "for Bike N Build."
Remember the years when our parish hall was wall-to-wall kids, bicycles, sleeping bags and gear as they stopped here on their way west? We want to continue to support both the kids and the biking, but also the organization with its affordable housing efforts. Please be generous.
Departure of Fr. Tyler postponed
With all the changes and demands of the corona virus and its impact on the church, Father Tyler has agreed to continue as Rector until June 1. Previously it was intended that our April 19 celebration would be his final day as our priest. But it was felt that leaving under current circumstances was not a viable option, much less a pastoral one.
In January your Vestry invited Mother Gloria to step in as long-term supply priest after Fr. Tyler's departure and she accepted. But that was before the virus concerns and she since has indicated it would be ill advised of her to maintain the commitment under current circumstances. Since then Fr. Allan Ford has agreed to take on the assignment on June 1. Fr. Allan is known to us as he has supplied at St. Paul's in the past and con-celebrated at the altar with Father Tyler earlier this month. For a time his mother was a parishioner at St. Paul's as well.


Please " Like" our page to stay up to date with all services and events.
St. Paul's Episcopal Church-Poughkeepsie

'In Service to God & You'

Our food pantry volunteers are in active service at St. Paul's these days. We give thanks to them and thanks to God for their willingness to help our by helping others.


Help us get the word out by submitting news of parish activities. Send submittals to or call 845 452 8440

Give us a call today!