Events that made a difference in 2019

Title:Events that made a difference in 2019

Table of Contents

Introduction

1. Annual Meeting, Jan. 13

2. SouperBowl, Feb. 3

3. ECW Travels to the House, Feb. 5

4. Ecumenical Bible Study, Feb. 6

5. Love keeps Caroline couple together, Feb. 14

6. Hunters for the Hungry, Feb. 27

7. Creating a Scene in Corinth, March 10

8. Village Dinner – March 13

9. Spanish Bible Study – March 15, Sept. 22

10. Cooking with the Kids, March 23

11. New Composter, March 24

12. Way of Love Breakfast, March 27

13. Work Day, March 30

14. Mary Peterman’s Stations of the Cross, April 19

15. Best of Holy Week, April 21

16. MS Walk with Shiloh Baptist, May 4

17. Happy Birthday, St. Peter’s, May 15

18. Shred-It, May 18

19. Storm Damage, May 31

20. Thy Kingdom Come – A cup of tea and an hour of prayer, June 7

21. First Corinthians Agape Meal, June 16

22. July 4 at St. Peter’s

23. Children’s Summer program – July 31, 2019

24. Gleaning, Aug 6

25. Blessing of the Backpacks – Aug. 11

26. Ladies Night Out at the Riverside, Aug 23

27. Bell Ringing, Aug 25

28. Trex Plastic Bag Collection Aug. 31

29. Season of Creation, Sept 1- Oct 4

30. St. Peter’s adds a Deacon, Sept. 8

31. Gospel on the River – Sept. 22

32. St. Peter’s Art, Sept. 30

33. St. Francis Celebration, Oct. 2

34. PhilHarmonia Concert, Nov. 2

35. Way of Beauty retreat, Nov. 9

36. ECW Tea, Nov. 19

37. Village Harvest at 5, Nov. 20

38. Giving At Thanksgiving and Christmas to the community

39. Port Royal Christmas, Dec. 6

40. Choir Retreat, Dec. 7

41. Everett’s Christmas Party, Dec. 7

42. A New Skin on the Nursery, Dec. 19

43. The Christmas Play, Dec. 22

44. The Blue Christmas Service, Dec. 22

45. Christmas Eve, Dec. 24


Building Community relationships.

One of the threads that runs through 2019 is extending our reach and activities through the Port Royal Community and beyond.

You can see it in the Spanish Bible Study that started in Lent and continued through the year. Like most ministries there are mutual benefits. It allows the people in the congregation who speak or learning the language to converse with native Spanish speakers in a common language – scripture.

The children’s summer program was a multi-week program in the summer bringing children together from Port Royal and those from St. Peter’s to the Parish House for cooking, fellowship and Bible study. This was an extension of the one day program on Maundy Thursday which we have done for several years and also this year “Cooking with the Kids” in March.

We also walked with Shiloh Baptist in the MS Walk in May continuing the work done in 2018 to promote participation with our neighboring churches. The path took us around Port Royal twice and then around the village square – 3+ miles. It is a good cause which made over $880. There were 30-40 walkers including 7 from St. Peter’s.

We reached out to other churches with the Way of Beauty Retreat. To find what gives you harmony in your life, the moral condition of good, the things that are harmonious, blessed, good and satisfying are all part of living the way of beauty. The mindset of The Way of Beauty gave the Navajo people the strength to persevere and to survive the ordeal in the forced walk to Ft. Sumner in Arizona.

We created a “Blue Christmas Service” held on Dec. 22 for those not in Christmas spirit feeling sad, lonely, or depressed. We partnered with Connexion, choir from Colonial Beach to bring light in our midst with their music. They sang “Lully, Lulla, Lullay” and the “Seal Lullaby” while candles were lit on the altar.

We continued our relationship with Essex and the Baptist Church with “Hunters for the Hungry” which we have done for 5 years. The program is coordinated through the Baptist churches in Essex County. Hunters store the deer in a truck with Champlain. Johnny and Cookie Davis filled Caroline’s social service empty freezer with packaged meat and ground meat for burgers.

It is easy to forget the events we do monthly/weekly in this connection. We celebrated 5 years of the Village Harvest, our food ministry and continued the Village Dinners on the second Wednesday of the month as well as weekly Ecumenical Bible Study. Through funds collected through the Village Dinners and other events, the ECW was able to distribute $2,750 to charities at the end of the year.

We also furthered our relationship with the environment with the Season of Creation during September and the purchase of a new composter. The season focuses on the role of God as Creator and Jesus dwelling in nature as one of us to bring us abundant life. We had a procession of parishioners bringing up a part of nature to the altar. Catherine led Christian Ed during September to places in the world with a spiritual emphasis. Several sermons has the Season of Creation as their main focus.


Events are in chronological order

1. Annual Meeting, Jan. 13

Link

You can access the reports that have been prepared for the 2019 Annual meeting on Jan. 13, 2019 in a web report, PDF or book view.

2. Souper Bowl, Feb. 3

Link

The Souper Bowl collection on Feb. 3, 2019 was a success attracting $210 compared to $175 and $125 for the previous two collections. We have been involved in the program since 2012 and we have collected $1.3K during that time.

The Souper Bowl program in conjunction with the NBF focuses attention on the issues of hunger and poverty in our community and throughout the world. 149 million will tune into the big game but there are 50 million facing hunger.

3. ECW Travels to “the House”, Feb. 5

Link

The St Peter’s ECW cooked for the Episcopal Lutheran Campus Ministry in Fredericksburg on Tuesday, February 5. It is located at 820 College Avenue across from Trinity Episcopal and known as “The House.”

From Catherine Hicks -“We took dinner to The House, on College Avenue, and served chicken tenders wrapped in bacon, broad beans, mashed potatoes, rolls and chocolate eclair cake to hungry students who came to the dinner.”

“They talked with Megan Cotter from Micah Ecumenical Ministries. The students devised a plan for getting the word out to UMW students about ways they can help Micah’s service to the homeless in this area. Their short answer. “We’ll have a drive for furniture donations around move-out day”

The Rev David Casey is the Young Adult Missioner who heads up ministry for young adults (18-35) in our Region. (Top picture, right).

4. Ecumenical Bible Study, Feb. 6

It was Helmut’s birthday party but it was also a time to celebrate Ecumenical Bible Study! Ecumenical Bible Study is a weekly event and for a survey as this easily missed because it is always there. The attendance can vary from 5 to 15 or more. They have met since at least 2002. While they frequently take a break in August they didn’t in 2019.

The readings follow the lectionary for the next Sunday. In addition they will periodically consider some thematic topics that tie in to the lectionary themes for that particular week.

5. Love keeps Caroline couple together, Feb. 14

Link

Free Lance-Star, Feb. 14, 2019 –

“Love keeps Caroline couple together, even in senior rehab facility”

“Love has kept Fred and Crystal Pannell together for 60 years—and in recent weeks, so have the actions of some key medical people.

“The Pannells were born on the same day, one year apart, and she’s quick to point out that he’s the senior member of the couple. He’s 83, she’s 82.
Both were teachers in Chicago, dealing with different ends of the spectrum. He taught science to gifted students, and she was a vice principal in one of the toughest neighborhoods on the South Side. Her middle school bordered two gang territories.”

6. Hunters for the Hungry, Feb. 27

Link

We provide a monetary donation from St. Peters to Hunters for the Hungry. St Peters has supported this project for more than five years.

From their website Hunters for the Hungry has distributed over 26.6 million quarter-pound servings of venison since their program began in 1991. Their goal for this year is to provide 280,000 pounds of venison to people in need in Virginia which will provide over a million servings.

Cookie and Johnny Davis went to Essex County on Feb 26, 2019 and picked up a truck load from Rev. Roy Foster, Pastor of Upper Essex Baptist Church.

They talked to Ann Tyree at social services and filled an empty freezer with packaged meat and ground meat for burgers. The Camden Hunt Club and St Peters both support the project.

7. Creating a Scene in Corinth, March 10

Link

Creating a Scene in Corinth:A Simulation explores 1st Corinthians through a book by Reta Halteman Finger which provides an introduction to the Greco-Roman setting of Corinth and a chapter-by-chapter survey of Paul’s letter and in turn leads to a simulation of a church.

The participants divide into four factions – those favoring Paul, Apollos, Peter, and the Christ group (1 Corinthians 1:12). A brief description of the background and nature of the groups gives the participants a sense of their role in the recreation. The characters represent a cross-section of Corinthian society: they include slaves and freeborn, widows and singles, and a number who have suffered deprivation and sexual abuse – much like typical society in that day.

8. Village Dinner – March 13

Wednesday, March 13 was the Quiet Day retreat at Roslyn in Richmond. We had 6 people participate. Half of those had to get back to St. Peter’s for the Village Dinner.

Like Ecumenical Bible Study, the Village Dinner is easily omitted in a survey such as this because of its frequency – monthly. It did move from the first Wednesday of the month to the second in 2019.

They are served at the church and also are packaged to go. They also provide home-cooked dinners to parishioners under medical care and have organized a casserole ministry.

9. Spanish Bible Study – March 15, Sept. 22

Link

The experimental Spanish Bible study for Lent began March 15 from 6pm-8pm and was weekly on Fridays in Lent. We had support from Virginia Theological Theological with videos and written documents.

We had 4 Spanish speakers (two from Mexico, two from Guatemala) and 6 English on the first Friday. It started with a snack supper at 6pm. . There were up to 10 people attending. In the Lent portion there was Spanish video sermon on the lectionary and discussion afterwards.

The offering was during Lent and then was continued monthly until September.

10. Cooking with the Kids, March 23

Link

Elizabeth and Jim Heimbach and Catherine Hicks held a cooking class for a few children in the parish house kitchen. Anya, Amya, 8 year old twins, and their brother. Dae’Vionn, age 11, sliced vegetables and prepared a small salad with the help of Elizabeth.

Catherine helped the children make brownies and crescent rolls. Jim showed each child how to crack eggs open and helped each person prepare his or her own omelet. Raoul and Claudia Villa also joined in on the cooking adventure. After cooking all of the food, everyone ate. And then, we all cleaned up the dishes and the kitchen.

11. New Composter, March 24

Link

The sermon blended our new composter into the sermon on the Parable of the Barren Fig Tree from Luke 13. Catherine gave out compostable paper for people to write “something that you want Jesus to compost for you. ”

The takeaway – “Jesus serves as our gardener. But being the good gardener that he is, Jesus wants to take the time to compost the manure in our lives into the manure can become the fertilizer we that we need to bear good fruit.

“I propose then, that instead of wallowing in the manure of our lives, or just blowing off the wrongs we’ve done, or trying to hide them from ourselves and others, and even from God, that we turn the manure in our lives over to Jesus for composting. Jesus will take your manure, and being the good gardener that he is, will compost it, and put it around your roots, so that you can bear good fruit.

“Offer up this manure up to Jesus for transformation.”

12. Way of Love Breakfast, March 27

Link

Five people gathered on the last Wednesday in March for the first Way of Love breakfast at St Peter’s. As you can see in the picture a number of vultures (about 30) were also interested in the subject (or just maybe the breakfast!).

The Way of Love came from a July 5, 2018 sermon by Presiding Bishop Michael /Curry to General Convention meeting in Austin, Tx introduced the “Way of Love”, spiritual practices to “help our church to go deeper as the Jesus Movement, not just in word, but not just in deed, either, but for real. How do we help our folk to throw themselves into the arms of Jesus.” There are 7 practices – Turn, Learn, Pray, Worship, Bless, Go, Rest.

After enjoying a leisurely breakfast together, we worshiped and then talked about the purpose of meeting as a small group for the next nine months. We talked about rules of life working like trellises in our lives, providing structure and shape for the spiritual growing that we hope to do as individuals and for the work of God in this church. The hope is to deepen our relationships with God and with one another.

13. Work Day, March 30

Link

About a dozen hearty souls teamed up with Johnny Davis to beautify the yards for spring and Easter. The Campbell magnolia was out in full bloom. The work day lasted all morning but Johnny and others continued until 4:30pm.

They were able to mulch, pull weeds, power wash the memorial garden, graves, parish house and fill in places along the drive way among other projects.

14. Mary Peterman’s Stations of the Cross, April 19

Link

Good Friday

Mary Peterman (artist, flutist, singer) not only created 14 watercolors depicting the Stations of the Cross but also included the relevant verses. This was a wonderful addition for Good Friday. Thank you!

15. Best of Holy Week, April 21

Link

From Palm Sunday to Easter, 2019 we held 5 services.  The services varied as well as mood – Psalm Sunday with the procession, the darkness and shadows of Tenebrae, the communal footwashing of Maundy Thursday, the musical meditation and tapers of Good Friday and then the wonderful attendance of Easter day.  We also participated in the Port Royal Sunrise service on  Sunday morning. Yes, we did walk with Jesus in his suffering and hardships and then sharing and proclaiming the resurrection.  

16. MS Walk with Shiloh Baptist, May 4

Link

St. Peter’s was invited to walk with Shiloh in this year’s MS Walk in Port Royal. The event is named after Laura Dobbins who passed away after enduring 25 years of multiple sclerosis. The National Multiple Sclerosis defines the disease -“Multiple sclerosis (MS) is an unpredictable, often disabling disease of the central nervous system that disrupts the flow of information within the brain, and between the brain and body. The cause of MS is still unknown. Scientists believe that a combination of environmental and genetic factors contribute to the risk of developing MS.

Walking at Shiloh were Cookie and Johnny Davis, Nancy Long, Helmut Linne von Berg, Catherine and Ben Hicks. Elizabeth Heimbach provided refreshments at the half way point at St. Peter’s. The path took us around Port Royal twice and then around the village square – 3+ miles.

At the Easter sunrise service in 2018 we pledged closer relations among all 3 Port Royal churches. A year ago we had a security seminar at the Fire Hall. We have marched with Shiloh for the MS Walk in that year and now 2019.

17. Happy Birthday, St. Peter’s, May 15

Link

Wed., May 15, 2019 on a gorgeous spring day. On St. Peter’s 183rd birthday – a full house for Bible Study at 10am showing off 3 cakes for the Village Harvest and then the Village Harvest later that day at 3pm. Eunice made a pineapple upside cake, Cherry angel food and Brad contributed a pound cake.

At the harvest, 146 were fed with 1,192 pounds of food – produce, groceries, meats and those birthday cakes! 146 was our best draw in a year. We have fed 593 this year close to last year at this point at 601 though under 2017 with 692.

Clients received an average of 8 pounds of food worth approximately $49. The year it has been higher at 12.75 pounds just behind last year in May at 13.67 pounds.

18. Shred-It, May 18

Link

Thanks to Andrea Pogue’s work on Shred-it today May 18, 2019, we earned $390, the largest tally in 8 years. The funds go to St. Peter’s outreach ministries. It covers well over a month of the Village Harvest.

19. Storm Damage, May 31

Link

A storm ripped through Port Royal, west to east destroying some of Robert Bryan’s trees on May 31, 2019 and moving across St. Peter’s property. St. Peter’s lost a dogwood in the front yard, a branch off the pear tree and a large 40′ pine on the border to an adjacent property. There were also larger branches on top of the sacristy.

Thanks to Johnny and Cookie Davis for cleaning up the mess. They took two truck loads on June 3 and Cookie estimates it will take too more. Johnny is the Junior Warden, a position traditionally tasked with the building.

20. Thy Kingdom Come – A cup of tea and an hour of prayer, June 7

Link

We encouraged parishioners to host a prayer service at your house or the Parish House during the Thy Kingdom Come.

We held one on Friday June 7 -“A Cup of Tea and an Hour of Prayer” with Cookie and Catherine,11am until noon at Cookie’s home.

Eleven people gathered at the home of Cookie and Johnny Davis to enjoy a time of fellowship and to pray together. After the group enjoyed cups of tea and goodies prepared by Cookie, Marilyn Newman led us in prayer accompanied by harp music, and then we prayed by following a finger labyrinth to the music of the harp. Then the group prayed together for a number of people who are dealing with various troubling issues. The time of prayer ended with thanksgiving and The Lord’s Prayer.

21. First Corinthians Agape Meal, June 16

Agape Meal Videos

Trinity Sunday videos

Trinity Sunday links

June 16, Trinity Sunday, was a busy Sunday!. It was Bishop Ihlof’s Visitation with the reception of two people into the church (Morgan Key, John Hess), the conclusion of our study of First Corinthians with an Agape Meal, Trinity Sunday and Father’s day.

At 10am we experienced an agape meal with Bishop Ihloff playing Paul in our “home church” in Corinth, concluding our 2 month study of First Corinthians. We had 10 people in attendance. The videos and pictures are here

The agape meal is known as a Lovefeast and was originally part of the Eucharist in the early church but split off by 250AD. These foods are typical of the food that would have been eaten by the Corinthians -Grapes, dried fruit of various sorts, dates, olives, green peas and basil, hummus, pita bread, lentils, mint, goat cheese].

Questions for “Paul” were prepared prior to the meal:

1. Please speak on the necessity of taking care of those less fortunate than us

2. How do we promote joy in the midst of hardship?

3. How do we handle division with the issue of the Resurrection ?

4. What example does your life have for us ?

5. How do we handle divisive issues ?

22. July 4 at St. Peter’s

Link

St. Peter’s was the scene of the Historic Port Royal July 4, 2019 observation.

Many parishioners were involved. Cookie Davis, the President of Historic Port Royal opened the event. Nancy Long and Thom Guthrie helped with the music, Mike read the Declaration, Marilyn presented 2 harpists. Johnny Davis along Charles McGuire, Eunice Key, Andrea Pogue sold concessions.

The videos show many of the above events. You can see part of what we saw and experienced.

23. Children’s Summer program – July 31, 2019

Link

The summer program occurred throughout June and July, 2019. The last children’s summer program was held on July 31. The Bible story used was the “Feeding of the 5,000.” The 16 children present made little pizzas and enjoyed ice cream (and toppings) on them.

24. Gleaning, Aug 6

Link

The Davis and Fisher families participated in gleaning on Aug 6 in Westmoreland County. We had a special guest Congressman Rob Wittman U.S. Representative for Virginia’s 1st congressional district.

“When you reap your harvest in your field, and forget a sheaf in the field, you shall not go back to get it; it shall be left for the stranger, the fatherless, and the widow, that the Lord your God may bless you in all the work of your hands.” Deuteronomy 24:19

Our main source for fresh vegetables for the Village Harvest food distribution (3rd Wed of each month, 3pm-5pm) is the Healthy Harvest Food Bank in Warsaw whose market area includes six counties of Essex, Lancaster, Middlesex, Northumberland, Richmond and Westmoreland, including Colonial Beach. Although we are not in that market area, they allow us to purchase food from them. Johnny and Cookie Davis are responsible for developing and continuing that relationship. Both of them drive monthly to pick up the vegetables early in the morning to be ready for the distribution later in the day

25. Blessing of the Backpacks – Aug. 11

Link

This was our first separate backpack service, a chance for a more informal service in the late afternoon before school begins the next day. We had one family with 4 eager children ready to go back to school. It was a beautiful sunny afternoon with mild temperatures for Aug. 11

Everyone showed off their new backpacks with all the gear. The service was a shortened communion service with a reading from Deuteronomy, Chapter 6, Verses 4-8 and Luke Chapter 2, Verses 41-52, Jesus as a student

26. Ladies Night Out at the Riverside, Aug 23

Link

Ladies Night Out was conceived in 2003 by Tom Mahoney, originally with the men cooking for the women in our parish house on a weekend evening. It was held as a social event honoring the ladies of the church.

It also has been a fund raiser for Church projects that Bill Wick noted in 2014 had raised $6,000. We have added games (newlywed game in 2012,a murder mystery in 2013, a game show Jeopardy in 2014,) and had gone offsite (My Fair Lady 2016 at the Riverside).

We were back at the Riverside for Rogers and Hammerstein’s South Pacific in 2019. Jim Heimbach and Ken Pogue of the Episcopal Church Men organize 25+ people to go on Aug 23.

The musical which has just celebrated its 70th anniversary opens on a South Pacific island, during World War II, where a naive young Navy nurse from Arkansas becomes romantically involved with Emile de Becque, a French plantation owner. A second love story ensues between an American lieutenant and a native girl.

27. Bell Ringing, Aug 25

Link

We rang St. Peter’s bells on Sun., Aug 25, 2019 at 3pm for one minute as part of remembrance of the 20 slaves brought to Va. Thanks to Jim and Elizabeth for doing the bell ringing. The bell is in the gallery with the front of the church in the distance showing the altar piece we restored in 2016.

Governor George Yeardley and his head of trade bought the “20. and odd Negroes” aboard in exchange for “victuals” — meaning, they traded food for slaves.

28. Trex Plastic Bag Collection Aug. 31, 2019

Link

This was a collection of plastic bags to be given to the Trex corporation. If we donate 500 pounds we get a bench.

The collection was from Aug. 2019 to the end of Oct. but it was extended and we were still collecting at the end of the year.

Thanks to Eunice and Roger Key for spearheading this effort who began collecting in March.

29. Season of Creation, Sept 1- Oct 4

Link

 Season of Creation Retrospective, 2019 (full size gallery)

For the third year we have substituted lectionary readings and other events for the month of September to celebrate God as creator of nature and the Word, Jesus. Jesus is the source of truth and understanding of God’s will and dwells in nature as one of us to bring us abundant life. The Holy Spirit is the energy behind nature.

The first week we had a procession of objects from nature.

In Christian Ed, Catherine took Christian ed participants on a whirlwind tour to sacred places in Jerusalem,

Galilee, Ireland, Hawaii and Guatemala. She called it “Family Vacation”

Sermons were linked to creation themes in particularly the 2nd and 3rd weeks

Online we focused on 6 issues today in dealing with nature and offered this summary on Climate change

30. St. Peter’s adds a Deacon, Sept. 8

Link

The Rev. Deacon Carey Connors is a Deacon in the Diocese of Virginia and is currently in the process for ordination to the priesthood and is in her second year at Virginia Theological Seminary. Carey will be at St Peter’s for this school year as a seminarian. Carey brings many years of experience to our congregation. During her time as a deacon at St George’s in Fredericksburg, Carey was instrumental in starting The Table, a market style food distribution that is open every Tuesday to those in need in the Fredericksburg area. She also worked at empowering youth and women at St. George’s At St Peter’s, Carey will spend time in conversation with Catherine and with a lay committee whose members include Cookie and Johnny Davis and Helmut Linne von Berg. She will be assisting on two Sundays a month and preaching periodically as she learns about life at St Peter’s.

31. Gospel on the River – Sept. 22

Link

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 it was at the Heimbach house for the second year and attracted 35, double the number from the preceding year.

32. St. Peter’s Art, Sept. 30

Link

This was part of the article in the Oct. newsletter and featured 30 pieces of art in the church and parish house. Unlike an art gallery, they are not organized as a collection don’t have labels attached.

God, the master artist, is always creating anew throughout the year, and the beauty of God’s earth is apparent everywhere on the grounds of St Peter’s. The church itself, which has been lovingly maintained since its opening in 1836, is a stately addition to the earlier colonial buildings in Port Royal.

33. St. Francis Celebration, Oct. 2

Link

St. Francis day is Oct. 4 but due to a prior commitment we did it on Oct. 2

The day was unseasonably hot 97% in Fredericksburg at noon. Thus we had only two pets due to the heat. However, that meant more mouse cookies for those present

Despite the weather, the fall colors were present in our sycamore trees.

34. PhilHarmonia Concert, Nov. 2

Link

This was our 8th yearly concert since 2013! And it was our largest group – 23 singers and director. We had 50 people who came to the show.

PhilHarmonia opened its 7th Season with “Music, She Wrote” – a concert celebrating works by women composers through the ages. The concert included traditional pieces for choir with that lush sound as well as pieces with extreme dissonance, foot stomping and soaring pitches. They have a special affinity for performing pieces that tackle social justice issues including racism, and LGBT. There was energy on all their pieces, evident in their delivery.

35. Way of Beauty retreat, Nov. 9

Link

The Way of Beauty Retreat took place at St Peter’s on Saturday, November 9. Carol Maher, the founder of Many Waters Ministries, led the retreat for a group of fifteen people from St Peter’s and from St Mary’s in Colonial Beach

After we spent some time in prayer, listening to God, we made collages that reflected what we feel most passionately about in our lives, what means the most to us, what inspires us, where we go for refreshment and peace.

36. ECW Tea, Nov. 19

Link

A dozen ladies gathered at Cookie Davis house to celebrate the year almost past, to decide on how to use the monies they collected in terms of donations and to enjoy the day with tea and other foods. They also made tags for the Giving Tree which will debut on Nov. 24.

Donations of $250 each or $2,750 in total to 11 groups:
Healthy harvest food Bank
Village harvest food distribution
Tunnels and towers
Heifer international
The discretionary fund
Wounded warriors
Saint Andrews school
Caroline’s promise
five talents
Episcopal relief and development
Caroline young life

37. Village Harvest at 5, Nov. 20

Link

On Nov. 19, 2014 we attracted 60 clients and gave out 300 pounds that day.
5 years later in 2019 we are averaging almost twice that number at 112 and 4 times are much food. I have called it “Give a Little, Gain a Lot.”

5 years later we have served over 6,800 clients over 64,500 pounds of food. This year the average pounds of food per person is over 12 which at $6 a pound is worth $72 It is clearly one of our more visible and valuable outreach expressions from our church. We are called to do like Jesus – and he fed people both physically and spiritually. Witness the stories of the Feeding of the 4,000 and 5,000.

38. Giving At Thanksgiving and Christmas to the community

The Episcopal Church Men (ECM) delivered Thanksgiving to 10 families this week (7 are single).

For Christmas we had the “Giving Tree” which was titled “St Peter’s Christmas Tree Family”. Tags were up by Nov. 24, and gifts returned by Dec. 8. This was a project between the church and Caroline County Department of Social Services. The tree will have gift tags on it describing the gifts needed by the family that we will be assigned.

38. Port Royal Christmas, Dec. 6

Link

This event in its 15th year is a combination of a pizza dinner, raffle, and a visit with Santa plus gifts provided after the visit. It is also a cooperative event between 3 churches, Parks and Rec., Town of Port Royal, the merchants, Caroline’s Promise and the Fire Department – and, of course, Santa. St. Peter’s provided the pizza and helped serve it. The children are the real stars.

39. Choir Retreat, Dec. 7

Link

Sat’s choir retreat has been an annual event for several years, at least since 2012. It is a combination of a separate practice away from the demands of Sunday to concentrate on the Christmas music as well as an opportunity to prepare a meal and enjoy each other’s company.

The choir ran over the Christmas music and enjoyed a lunch of crab quiche, bread, salad and and pie. In an earlier life, Brad was a chef in Washington which shows in the luncheon portion of the Choir retreat.

40. Everett’s Christmas Party, Dec. 7

Link

This is not a Christmas party but a Christmas experience. In every room in the Everett household you are surrounded by Christmas. It is challenging just to see everything. And their collection is still expanding! The family pitches by starting the decorating in early November to be ready.

There were at least 40+ people. The 2018 event was snowed out – well Cherry said there were about 20 hearty souls.

41. A New Skin on the Nursery, Dec. 19

Link

The first of a series upgrades – a new roof during the week of Dec. 16, 2019. Later the outside will be renovated as well as the inside. The work on the roof was donated.

In 1965, Rector Fall reconstructed the old outdoor kitchen behind the Rectory and converted it into a one-room structure with wood-stove piped into the chimney. This became the art studio of Mrs. Fall and is now our nursery building. Originally there was a shed there.

42. The Christmas Play, Dec. 22

Link

Videos of Baptism and Play

The play takes place with the Trinity, God, Son, Holy Spirit looking down at the world. God sees the world as beautiful but the Holy Spirit laments “I’m having trouble getting through to people. They are barely able to catch their breaths, much less breathe deeply enough to take me in.” Jesus adds “And their hearts have turned to stone, impervious to love. They are busy hating on each other.” God adds his response – “They seem so distant and lost from us, and they’ve made a mess of our good creation “But….many people are praying for rescue. Holy Spirit: “I’ve noticed too, as I blow where I will on the earth, that not all hearts have turned to stone. Take Mary, for instance. What a kind heart she has, overflowing with love.”

All three say together: “We will become one of them so that they can find their way back to us. ” The Christmas story is told with Gabriel, Mary, Joseph, Jesus, the three Wisemen and Herod.

43. The Blue Christmas Service, Dec. 22

Link

Videos

We advertised it this way -“the Christmas Season a time when you feel sad, lonely, or depressed? We invite you to join us at this service to acknowledge these feelings and share in a time of reflection on the pain, sadness, or loneliness you may feel. We pray that you will find hope and comfort in knowing that you are not alone with this service.”

The setting of the service at 4:30pm at the winter solstice echoed the darkness of people’s lives. In contrast to this the candles in the windows and the altar candles provided an alternative setting.

We invited Connexion Chamber Choir to participate in this service. The highlight of the service was the section of “Lighting of candles” which included “Lully, Lulla, Lullay” and the “Seal Lullaby”. It was very ethereal especially when the descant came in. People came forward lit a candle and placed it in the pot remembering people we may have lost, a longing not fulfilled a particular hope.

44. Christmas Eve, Dec. 24

Link

Videos

A beautiful day to have a service! Moderate temperatures in the low 50’s with abundant sunshine. The outside views of the church were spectacular.

We had 52 at the service. A surprise was that both Fred and Crystal Pannell were able to make it to the service. In fact Catherine paused the service to welcome Fred who had not been able to get to the service in several years.

This year there were fewer instrumentalists as in 2018. The choir presented Carol of the Bells and Venite Adoramus, Gesu Bambino. However, there was a new women’s ensemble from the choir and others (Nancy, Denise, Mary and Catherine) who call themselves “St Peter’s Soli Deo Gloria Women’s Ensemble”. They have been practicing the music of John Rutter and performed “What sweeter music” at the offertory.