Events that made a difference in 2018

Title:Events that made a difference in 2018

The theme that stuck out in 2018 was the environment, similar to 2017. We celebrated its beauty and at times were concerned about the real threats to it. The environment was part of music, Christian Ed, our services and lectionary year.

The Thirteen’s performance early in the year was called “From Tree to Shining Tree” which was based on the environment and how composers have expressed their feelings – wonder, delight as well horror to the destruction of nature through their music.

In May we did a prayer walk at Pentecost , a time of renewal and the culmination of the Easter Season.

The children participated in the Holy Hike at mid year with its own outdoor Eucharist and included picking up trash on the river.

We devoted a whole month to the environment with the “Season of Creation” which ended with a Christian education session on mandalas which were built from nature.

Chronological Order

1. Visit to Waterways – Feb. 10, 2018

Catherine took a group to visit this impressive exhibit on Feb. 10, a traveling Smithsonian exhibit at the Fredericksburg museum. It runs from Jan 28 through March 11.

We take it for granted, but how much do you really know about it? A literal flood of information on water was presented – how it is so necessary and how we both use and misuse this resource. So much that it will be easy to come back. The guides were knowledgeable and demonstrated much of the information to make it memorable. The central theme of water in many of the world’s religions was particularly notable. Fredericksburg was literally built on the role of the Rappahannock River.


2. The Thirteen – Feb. 11, 2018

The Thirteen was our first concert almost five years ago in Oct. 2013. We brought them back to help begin our sixth year in 2018. Many of their concerts, including this one, are thematic. This concert, “From Tree to Shining Tree”, was based on the environment and how composers have expressed their feelings – wonder, delight as well horror to the destruction of nature through their music.


3. Shrove Tues/ Ash Wed – Feb. 14, 2018

Ash Wednesday was Feb 14

The liturgy provides words about the purpose of Lent. “I invite you, therefore, in the name of the Church, to the observance of a holy Lent, by self-examination and repentance; by prayer, fasting, and self-denial; and by reading and meditating on God’s holy Word.”

The service started without music and opening readings and flowed into a collect and readings, followed by the sermon. The sermon placed an emphasis on God’s love for us as treasures based on a line from Matthew -“Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust consume and where thieves break in and steal; but store up for yourselves treasures in heaven.”

Gallery – Ash Wednesday

Shrove Tuesday was Feb. 13. Shrove Tuesday is the last day of Epiphany and the bridge to Lent which begins Wed. Feb. 14. Shrove Tuesday is a day of reflection but mostly feasting. And we did that with about 20 in the Parish House. For a variety of reasons – renovation, Village Dinner, weather we have not had one since 2013. Thanks to Dave, Eunice, Roger, Andrea, and Catherine for helping out preparing and serving and making this day a reality once again.

Gallery – Shrove Tuesday

4. Parish House painted. – March 18, 2018

Painting inside was ongoing on Lent 5, March 18, 2018 – gallery was not usable so the piano was used this Sunday.

The next week the sacristy was cleared on Sunday and painting ensued. An emergency crew came in on Thursday to recover the church so to be ready by Sunday. The place was a mess!  Adding to the difficulties was that the weather was not spring-like with a strong wind making it that much colder.

5. First Week of Spring – Snow! – March 21, 2018

The week started with a spectacular sunrise on Monday, March 19. A good sign to lead to spring but spring never showed its face this week.

Yes, we had planned a full first day of spring March 21- Bible Study at 10am, preparation for the Village Harvest, our food distribution, which was scheduled from 3pm to 5pm and then continuing the Bible study on Revelation at 6pm.

Mother nature had other ideas with 3 to 5 inches of snow falling on the 21st. All of our activities were cancelled.


6. Easter week and along the River – April 1, 2018

Best of Easter Gallery

Sunrise Service

Story – Easter Sunday

We started out at the Sunrise Service at the Long’s House at 7:00am.

St. Peter’s had some key roles. Catherine preached. Nancy provided the welcome and Alex the opening prayer and Apostle’s Creed. Shiloh brought their band as they have in former years..

The sermon was based on the Road to Emmaus. The takeaway was this –

“But may we be reminded this morning that when the music has ended, when the last prayer is said, when the bulletins are recycled, when the chairs we are sitting on are gathered up and hauled away, when the table has been cleared, when we’ve shouted the last alleluia and when we have gone our separate ways, that God does not want us to treat one another as strangers or just casual acquaintances until this time next year when we gather to worship again. God has given us the gift of one another.

“So let’s make this the year of hospitality in Port Royal, the year to pay attention to one another, to listen to one another, to be intentional about walking the Way together, and to invite one another in to sit down together, and break bread together, to worship together, and to work together for God’s glory in this community—together.”

The key event was possibly the 3 ministers talked about security and pledged for a more working relationship on key issues. The churches met together on April 22 to talk more of security. The tragedy in Sutherland Springs, Texas where a gunman killed has affected all of us since like Port Royal it is a rural community We had about 45 people attend, a wonderful turnout. We had a Caroline County deputy provide the program. He provided a handout as a first step. He has analyzed the security of each of the churches and presented a report to each. Shiloh invited the church to one of their events in August. We also donated a laser printer to them.

7. Shrine Mont Retreat – May 4-6, 2018

In spite of the third rainy weekend in a row, the 8 hardy souls who went to Shrine Mont enjoyed getting together with Christ Church friends. This was our 5th year of retreats with Christ Episcopal

In the food, worship and relaxing down time we shared, we drew closer to God and to one another. Bridgette Long was hands down the most charming, irresistible person in the group. This year the group watched The Spitfire Grill, a movie that contained thought provoking themes about redemption, forgiveness, and sacrificial love


8. Prayer Walk – May 20, 2018

This is a successor to the 2017 walk which we did with Bishop Shannon. Last year we prayed with the Baptists, fishermen and other towns people. Above all we celebrated the beauty that we found. Pentecost is a time of renewal for Christian believers and nature is a perfect place for us to be. Through studying the story of Pentecost, many seek and pray for spiritual gifts for the church during this time of holy celebration.


9. St. Peter’s ECW meets with St. George’s – May 24, 2018

11 ladies from St. George’s ECW met with 7 of their counterparts from St. Peter’s on a beautiful day with plenty of sunshine at the church. After a tour of the Port Royal museum from Cookie, they had lunch in the Parish House

They feasted on baked tortellini, tossed salad, broccoli cauliflower, bread, cake and lemon lush for desert. (Brad contributed the cake). After lunch, they toured the church and posed for a picture on the steps of St. Peter’s. Thanks to all who helped! Kate gave out some of her famous eggs for a truly country event.


10. An Instructed Eucharist – June 10, 2018

Catherine did an instructed Eucharist on June 10, 2018 which was Pentecost 3.

Today’s service was an instructed Eucharist which included the sermon. An Instructed Eucharist is a special service for new Episcopalians, which is narrated in order to teach the meaning of the service. There is no established form in the Episcopal Church for doing so. We had 40 people to hear it. It actually was more than the Eucharist and was more of a instructed service.

9 Videos – Instructed Eucharist

We also blessed 3 couples who had 45+ years of marriage.

11. Exterior Sign is Back – June 17, 2018

After almost a year, our external sign has been restored by Rence Rupp from Fredericksburg. The letters are all hand done with the closest font to the original and he added 4 coats of shellac to help preserve it. The sign was placed at St. Peter’s in 1936 as part of the 100th year anniversary celebration. It began a slow deterioration about 10 years ago. The original idea was to place the original sign under protection in our parish house and then craft a new sign. Then the idea emerged to trace the old sign in 2017. Bishop Shannon helped in this process. The church then shifted to restoring the old sign in 2017 which is now complete with the sign back in place, June 17, 2018.


Rupp was at St. Peter’s on July 1 to receive gifts from the church.

12. Nature Hike with the children – June 19, 2018

On a steamy hot day, Tuesday, June 19th, the St Peter’s kids, their parents, Odessa Davis, Dave Duke and Becky Fisher, along with Catherine Hicks and Andrea Pogue gathered to hike around Portobago Bay, to worship out in the beauty of God’s beautiful world, to greet the neighbors and to enjoy creation.


13. One Day Pastoral Care – June 28, 2018

ONEDay gives us the opportunity to visit those who are part of our ONE body who can no longer get to church, or who have trouble getting out on a regular basis.

The first ONEDay occurred on June 28, 2018. Andrea Pogue, Susan and Helmut Linne von Berg, Elizabeth Heimbach, Catherine Hicks and Nancy Long gathered at St Peter’s and prepared to visit various members of the congregation. Nancy Long plans to send cards to those we could not visit on this day.

The visitors went out to visit, taking with them the prayers and good will of the congregation. They also carried book marks with helpful prayers from The Book of Common Prayer to leave with those they went to see. After visiting, everyone returned to church, and the group ended in prayer for those who had received a visit.


14. July 4 at St. Peter’s – July 4, 2018

St. Peter’s was the scene of the Historic Port Royal July 4, observation.

Many parishioners were involved. Cookie Davis, the President of Historic Port Royal opened the event and talked of her family roots. Nancy Long, Chair of the Caroline County Board, stressed the importance of participation and service in the collective role of government – we are the government.

The men led by Johnny Davis served lunch and netted $600. Helping him were Helmut Linne von Berg, Charles McGuire, Ken and Andrea Pogue, Bill Wick, and Laura Carey.
Mike Newman as the town crier gave an impassioned reading of the Declaration of Independence. The afternoon event included Marlyn Newman’s harp competition winners performing a mini-concert.

Cleo Coleman (a good Baptist, though she occasionally visits us and participates in weekly ecumenical Bible study) provided an amazing historic recreation of Harriet Tubman in her later years in a nursing home recalling her life on a Maryland plantation and her role in the Underground Railroad.

Nancy Long, Mike Newman, Thom Guthrie, pianist and Bill McCoy, organist (OK he is a Methodist) led the crowd in a patriot hymn fest.


15. Outreach to the Trailer Court – July 9, 2018

We visited the Trailer Court twice in 2018 – Maundy Thursday and then provided lunch on July 9

On July 9, 2018, Johnny Davis, Andrea Pogue and Catherine Hicks met at the church and prepared a lunch of hotdogs, chips, cookies, water, drinks, fruit bars, apples and bananas and headed over to Liberty St, set up a table in the shade of a big tree and put the food out. (We got a head start on the hot dogs by cooking them on July 4 thanks to Ken Pogue). Before we knew it, kids came from everywhere. We had a prayer and then everyone ate lunch. We served around twenty people. Some of the kids and Catherine made house calls and delivered food to people who couldn’t come out. Everyone had a good time.

One child remembered the Maundy Thursday event. Another asked if the group could return next Monday.


16. Visit of Luis Garcia from the Dominican Republic – July 15, 2018

July 15 and July 22nd—We welcomed The Rev. Luis Garcia, from the Dominican Republic. Cookie and Johnny have helped to support Luis in his journey from his days in the orphanage and through his years of education, and St Peter’s has helped also.

From Cookie’s article in the August, 2017 newsletter : “I met a student named Luis Garcia in one of the schools I visited in 2005. His grandmother with whom he lived had died recently and he was staying with the priest and his family. He spoke no English and my Spanish was not the best, but we communicated…. perhaps on a deeper level.”

Cookie and Johnny have also become part of Luis’ family over the years, supporting him in his education. “Today the Rev. Luis Garcia has completed his studies at the Seminary and is in a rural area in Bani where he serves 3 churches and another being built. St. Mattias, in the complex where he lives, has two church schools and a guest house for visitors.”


He also helped us with the Village Harvest in July
Village Harvest

17. Catherine’s sabbatical – August, 2018

Catherine presented 60 pictures from her Spanish immersion trip in August, 2018 to Antigua, Guatemala to 17 people. Entitled “An Afternoon in Guatemala, the event began with a beverage, Guatemalan chocolate or coffee and then assorted dishes served in the dining room.

An Afternoon in Guatemala

We also posted others in August
which spotlighted a typical day

18. Season of Creation – September, 2018

For Five Sundays in September we were in this optional lectionary within Pentecost

The Season of Creation is an optional season for the church year. For the most part, the seasons of the church year follow the life of Jesus: Advent, Christmas, Epiphany, Lent, and Easter. The remainder of the church year encompasses Pentecost season (or Ordinary Time), which celebrates life in the Holy Spirit.

For centuries, our theology our theology has focused on relationship with God and our human relationships with one another. The Season of Creation focuses God’s relationship with all creation and with our relationship with creation (and with God through creation). It highlights our role in understanding and addressing address the ecological problems we face today as a part of God’s creation.


19. Gospel on the River – September 29, 2018

Gospel returned on Sat. Sept 29, 2018

The location has varied over the years but the format is similar – singing favorite gospel hymns on various instruments with food either before or after. It has always been sometime in September just before the fall coolness arrives.

This year 17 participated with Jim Heimbach on the piano and Helmut on the violin with some vocals from Nancy. It has been in the church, besides the Parish House, in Portobago Bay but this year was the first time in a private home, the Heimbach home.



20. Learning about Mandalas – September 30, 2018

This event occurred on the last Sunday in the Season of Creation. What made it special was Karen Richardson came and taught both children and adults how to construct mandalas at the 10am Christian Ed hour. The word “mandala” is from the classical Indian language of Sanskrit. Loosely translated to mean “circle,” and refers to the sense of wholeness created by both circular forms. Karen brought a table full of constructors from nature – shells, sharks’ teeth, plants, etc. that the participants could use in constructing mandalas – from the inside outward. The art construction is not permanent – the participants build it up and then took it down reflecting the course of nature – life and death. It was an appropriate conclusion to the Season of Creation.


21. St. Francis – October 4, 2018

Under clear, but warm skies for an early October Thursday, Catherine blessed six dogs – Max, Opie, Bo, Rosie, Charlie, Koda, and one kitten–Cricket. It was a heated contest but Max and his owner came out with the $25 Pet Smart gift certificate. Elizabeth Heimbach’s mouse treats were delicious as usual and Catherine added “munchies” for all. Including Catherine there were 17 people.


22. Evening Eucharist for Children – October 28, 2018

We had 23 in the Service at 4:30pm that was entitled an Evening Eucharist for children. It was both a service and snack supper. The service blended in Halloween themes and All Saints occurring this week. The children were dressed in costumes ranging from a princess, a pineapple, Dr. Who and even a skunk! The messages were All Saints.

The service began in the front of the church talking about All Saints, who are the saints and then taking candles in jars to some of the graves. Then the service resumed in the church with a youth acolyte. The youth also read the Prayers of the People.

The scriptures were well known – Psalm 23 and Matthew’s Gospel of Jesus walking on the water.

After communion and the final prayers, there was a snack supper. Major help was provided by Elizabeth Heimbach (mouse cookies, macaroni), Brad (cakes), Eunice (pumpkins) and Catherine (jello treats, salad). Becky provided a game of scooping up marshmallows that was a hit!


23. Season of Giving and 4 year anniversary of Village Harvest – November, 2018
This year we added the Heifer Project replacing Samaritan’s Purse. Mary Peterman painted 3 watercolors to be auctioned in Dec. with proceeds going to the Heifer Project.

It was also the 4th anniversary of the Village Harvest in November. On Giving Tuesday, Nov 27 we made our $1,200 goal, raising $1,267.

Season of Giving

24. A full Sunday – November 11, 2018 – Pentecost 25 – Baptism, End of World War I, Heifer Project, Sermon with Props

A diverse Sunday – A remembrance at the end of World War I, a baptism, the beginning of the Heifer Project. And a beautiful fall day with a bite in the air and leaves crunching under your feet. We had 49 on hand for this Sunday.

We tolled our Meneely Bell bell and sang “God of our Fathers” at the beginning of the service as the war ended at 11am, on Nov 1918 exactly a 100 years earlier. The belfry was restored in 2010.

The sermon was unique. “And today is all about being all in. So, with the help of your imaginations, I want to check in with several people who are all in.” During the sermon Catherine used props and dressed as the widow of Zarephath, scribes 2,000 year ago, the Widows Mite, her grandfather William Delbridge a veteran of World War I, and Don West founder of the Heifer Project.


25. ECW Thanksgiving Tea – November 27, 2018

18 ladies came to Cookie Davis’ home to celebrate Thanksgiving, feast and fellowship and to consider ideas for distributing ECW funds for the end of 2018. They have collected about $4,000 from the monthly Village Dinners. In addition they were looking ahead to plan for 2019.


26. Augmented choir during Advent – Dec. 16, 2018

We had two new choir additions during December, Mary Peterman and Denise Gregory along with Thom Guthrie that added strength to the choir. The additions allowed for more diverse music selections and harmonic variety. Also Mary brought her flute and with Denise on piano performed a duet on Christmas Eve. Thom is also an accomplished organist, choir director on his own and worked with Helmut on his violin numbers for Christmas as well as playing organ.

Here is “Come Thou Long Expected Jesus” from Dec. 16.

27. Christmas Play – December 23, 2018

Advent 4 is traditionally the Christmas Play. The play written for this year was called “The Greatest Gift” and like the 2015 play which had a 13th Century Italy setting this one has unique setting – an old folks home! The church had signs on the front door that said “Old Folks Homes.” The main characters were played by parishioners who are not considered old folks yet. The Old folks lament that they can’t do the things they used to do at Christmas – put out the creche or they miss people who have died. Families seem too busy to visit. The play revolves around the Christmas story that is a play within a play. The old folks discover like the wiseman that they have a unique gift that they can offer to show God’s glory. They don’t have to fear old age and death with Jesus as the light of the world.