March 23, 2023 Edition

Collect and Readings for March 26, 2023 | Fifth Sunday in Lent

I’ve always seen Lent as a time of preparation for the upcoming Christian year. I hope you will forgive the baseball analogy, but I liken it to spring training. We get back to the basics and reacquaint ourselves with those practices that we may have gotten a bit rusty at doing. We also open ourselves to new practices and techniques that will improve our “game.” Life may send some curve balls and fly balls deep to center field, but if we are centered in the disciplines of our Faith, mindful always of God’s loving Presence with us, we will be in a better position to handle what comes our way.

So Lent asks of us a bit more than giving up raspberry truffle ice cream and those gooey sweet desserts that we love so much. That wise and insightful saint, Benedict of Nursia, instructed the monks under his care not so much to give up things for Lent, but rather add things to their lives that may be missing but would be so very necessary to strengthen them and prepare them for all the twists and turns that would lie  ahead  of them on the road of life. Click here for more.

This Week

Bishop's Visit on Sunday, March 26 | We look forward to welcoming The Right Reverend Jennifer Brooke-Davidson, the new Assistant Bishop of the Diocese of North Carolina, to All Saints’ for Holy Eucharist with Confirmation at 9 and 11:10 AM as well as a 10 AM Bishop's forum. There will be receptions after each service.

On Sunday, the "loose plate" offering will be given to the Bishop's Discretionary Fund. Your offering helps the diocese care for and reach out to those who are vulnerable and in need. Another way to give is by using this online giving link. Your contributions are very much appreciated at this time.

Lent materials are available in the Welcome Center. Be sure to pick up this week's Pocket Lent cards.

Holy Week-Easter

Click graphic above to download All Saints' Schedule

Click to sign up for Women's Gathering
Click to sign up for a time slot

Spotlight on Ministries

It’s Okay to Be Human | An important theme of the Lenten season is the humanity of Christ. In Jesus, God became human and fully experienced the wide range of emotions we all encounter in life. Jesus experienced times of loneliness, sadness, hurt, anger, disappointment, grief, and abandonment. That is part of being human. Another part of being human is needing help from each other. God never intended us to be completely self-sufficient. Part of God’s plan is for each one of us to turn to others for help when we need it.

So when you are experiencing difficult times, don’t struggle alone. Our Stephen Ministers will walk with you, listen to you, encourage you, pray with you, and provide confidential one-to-one care to help you through tough times. Stephen Ministers can bring the love of Jesus back into your life. To learn more about Stephen Ministry, talk to one of our Stephen Leaders, Barbara Lewis, Rita Smith or Jim Williams.

Koinonia Update | The Koinonia team has been busy this past Fall and Winter.  As we continue our discernment process of choosing a community nonprofit organization, we have met with several ASEC ministry groups to get your feedback on where you think Jesus through the Holy Spirit is leading us. The meetings were prayerful, powerful, and informative.  

We are continuing in the next several weeks to hear from parishioners that have not had an opportunity to share their thoughts. We invite you to complete a short and simple survey available in the Weekly Word or on the All Saints’ website. There will also be printed copies of this survey for you to complete after church services, as well as a Zoom meeting in the near future. Watch for that date and link in a future Weekly Word.

Once we receive all the feedback, ASEC then will begin the final process of choosing an organization to commit our time and talents. Our goal is to select a nonprofit that our community of All Saints’ can work together to support the larger community with our time and talents.

All Saints’ has learned so much about Cabarrus County and the needs of our neighbors! Many of you have individually joined some of the groups that we heard from and are already making a difference with your volunteerism. As we narrow down our choices, and choose an organization for All Saints’ to support, we are reminded of the definition of Koinonia – Christian fellowship or communion with God and others. Koinonia is an interactive relationship – sharing in spiritual and material blessings. Our hope is that our support of an organization will bring All Saints' together as we learn and assist others. Along with this, there will be some of us that are called to serve in other areas. This is an additional bonus of the Koinonia process.  

We are closer to finalizing our discernment process and are looking forward to another opportunity for our community of All Saints’ to be a part of our larger Community.

With thanks from the Koinonia Team – Randy Brantley, Chuck Collier, Dorothy Garrett, Gabby Hollopeter, Karen Robinson, and Deanna Whitley.

Click for Koinonia Survey

Grapevine | News from the Parish

Please pray for the EYC in their travels to Burlington, NC this Friday and Saturday for the 66th year of Genesis and Happening. May they arrive with open hearts and leave with changed lives!

Church Life Update | The church office is in the process of transitioning from Church Life to REALM Connect. This will provide improved database functions and a better user experience. In the interim, you can still access your Church Life account; however, please do not make any changes to your personal information. If you need to update any information, please send your changes to Stephanie. Questions? Contact the church office at 704-782-2024.

Finance Report (February 2023 month-end, General Fund) | Good news! After a very successful appeal campaign, the Church reduced its 2023 budget deficit by $40,000 from $77,000 to a deficit of $36,925!

The budget for the first two months of the year carries a greater deficit than the later parts of 2023 as, generally, pledges are stronger in those later months. However, our expenses continue to run constantly throughout the year, so a continued and steady stream of pledged income is vital to maintain the expected deficit.

For the operations of the Church, at the end of February, we showed a deficit of $19,059 compared to a budgeted deficit of $20,290. This is better than the budget by a small amount. Income from Full year pledges and pre-paid pledges are ahead of budget by $1,140. Income from Plate offerings and unpledged amounts are ahead of budget by $2,787. However, income from monthly pledges is $8,620 below budget.

As these numbers show, your giving is vital. We are very thankful to you for helping to decrease the budget deficit; however, we are still operating in a deficit. Your generous and continued support of the Church is key to good financial stewardship.

Check out the new Online Giving portal

Extended Road Closure will impact All Saints' | Beginning April 12, a portion of Country Club Drive NE will be closed to thru traffic between Branchview Drive NE and Concord Parkway N. The culvert under this section of the road is scheduled to be replaced. It is a major road works project and could last nine months. There will be two detours in place during the closure. For details, click here.

We offer condolences and prayers for the family and friends of Steve Clark, dear friend of Brian and Shane Sapp-Moore, who entered into the Resurrection on Thursday, March 9, 2023. Steve often visited, singing with the Choir of All Saints' and playing cello. During the pandemic, Steve faithfully joined the choir virtually from Virginia and sang during some of our online worship services. Steve's Celebration of Life service will be held Saturday, April 1, at 2 PM at Redeemer Episcopal Church, Midlothian, VA. Here is Steve's obituary. We cherish Steve's memory and find peace that he now sings with the eternal choir of saints.

We offer condolences and prayers for the family and friends of John Con Teeter III, who entered into the Resurrection on Saturday, March 4, 2023. His service was held Friday, March 10, at All Saints'. We cherish John's memory and hold his wife, Dorothy, and both of their families in our prayers

Ways to Worship

Worship on Sundays

All Saints' invites you to attend in-person Eucharist Services on Sundays. The first service is at 9 AM in the Parish Hall. The second service is at 11:10 AM in the Nave. Both of these services are also live-streamed via Facebook Live and our YouTube Channel. All are welcome!

Note: Masks are optional for fully vaccinated people. Click for details.

Nursery is provided during both Sunday services, from 8:45 AM-12:30 PM, for children ages infant to 3-years-old.

Christian Formation at 10 AM with opportunities for all ages.

Youth Group (EYC) regularly meets on Sundays. Middle School at 4 PM. Dinner for Middle and High School from 5-5:30. High School meets 5:30-6:45 PM. Contact Tiffany Fulton for details.

During the Week

Compline is led by our Compline Team on Facebook Live every Tuesday at 8 PM.

Noonday Prayer provides spiritual encouragement via Facebook Live on Wednesdays at Noon.

All Saints' Choirs The Resurrection Choirs meets Sundays, 8:15 AM. Bells of All Saints' meet Wednesdays, 6-7 PM. The Choir of All Saints’ meets Wednesdays, 7-8:30 PM. On Tuesdays, the St. Nicholas Choir (5:30-6 PM) and Junior Choir (6-7 PM) meet. For details, contact Brian Sapp-Moore.

Older Wiser Laity (OWLs) typically meet in-person at the church on the second Thursday and have Zoom gatherings on the fourth Thursday of the month. For details, email Deacon Vern or call/text him at 704-699-0810.

Prayer Shawl Ministry meets in-person, in the Welcome Center on the second Tuesday of the month, from 10 AM-Noon. For details, email Jan Millar or call her at 704-918-8645.

Saturday Morning Men's Group meets at 8 AM in the Welcome Center. Contact Mark Robinson or Chuck Collier for details.

Prayer Requests

Prayer is the foundation of the ministry of this parish. If you would like to request prayers, please share here. If you are hospitalized, please let the church know. If you are unable to make the call yourself, ask for the chaplain on call and they will make it for you. The church phone number is 704-782-2024.

Prayers have been requested for Tam, Meghan, Lynda, Jeff, Kim, all members of our church, Rev. Nancy, Brian, and Shane.

The Lord be with you.