|Blessings to St. Paul’s Beloved Family Eucharist Congregation!|
|Where have you noticed God this week?|
The new “where have you seen/noticed God?” section of our weekly family postcard. You are invited to share the moments you notice God in your daily life. Snap a picture or create a piece of art, like a drawing, with a brief description and email it to Katie at firstname.lastname@example.org. Each week we will feature a God Sighting in the weekly postcard!
|As spring continues to awaken and greet us I am feeling God in the midst of noticing creation. This lovely little tulip, one of hundreds in a small park near our home, drew me in and gave me such a warm sense of peace. Thanks be to God!– Rev. Katie Holicky|
|Spend some time with our new Assistant Rector|
I would love to invite each of you to reach out! Please contact me via email at email@example.com and we will find some time to connect for coffee via Zoom or over the phone. I would love to hear more about your journeys of faith and all that you love about and hope for St. Paul’s. I am so excited to spend time getting to know you all!
|All Things Youth|
|Hello St. Paul’s Middle and High School Youth!|
I look forward to getting to know you all by spending some time together soon! Please keep an eye out for the announcement of our weekly gatherings starting very soon! If you would like to share any youth ideas or give input as to when youth gather please let Katie know.
High Schoolers: Don’t forget you are always invited to participate in the Diocese of Maine Youth weekly Compline. Fridays 8 p.m. Click https://zoom.us/j/91229046535 to join, or call (301) 715-8592, Meeting ID: 912 2904 6535
|Join Us for Worship|
|Join us this Sunday, May 17, the 6th Sunday of Easter9:30 a.m. Rev. Katie Holicky will lead us in a time of song, prayer, story and sharing with our friends! |
Here is the link for the Zoom gathering.
10:30 a.m. Morning Prayer, on the Facebook live feed
11:30 a.m. Virtual Coffee Hour on Zoom. Here is the Zoom link.
|Fun Things for Families|
|Here are some helpful resources to keep you and your family faithfully connecting during this season at home. |
Family Sunday School brought to you by SparkHouse! Enjoy some faith based family time. This resource includes a video with songs and stories, an info/ activity sheet and coloring page!
Building Faith Brick by Brick
brings Legos and Bible stories together for this playful way to explore scripture. Parents, all questions/ prompts are included in each lesson!
Enjoy some Bible Stories brought us by Godly Play. Well suited for the youngest among us.From paper print outs to how to make-your-own 3D labyrinths, use these ideas for finger labyrinths for a grounding moment.
Parents and teens, are you looking for a way to deepen your daily prayer practice?
Pray As You Go. Here is a helpful website, also available as an app for your smartphone or tablet, that offers you a daily practice of readings, prayers and even musically Psalms!Here are some helpful articles for talking with your children about COVID-19.*
Building Faith has a helpful article about how to talk about COVID-19 with your children.
The CDC has also provided some helpful information for supporting children during this time.
|To read the Sunday Paper Junior Click Here.|
|How St. Paul’s is Staying Connected|
|Graduates to be Celebrated!|
Please email us (firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, or firstname.lastname@example.org) with the name of a loved one who is graduating from high school, college or graduate school. It will be important for our parish to recognize them, particularly this year when all is closed down.
Connecting by Phone
A team led by Hugh Savage and Cliff Ruprecht are standing by to join our Lay Pastoral Visitors to deliver meals to any parishioner in need. They also will connect by phone with parishioners who might feel more isolated by our closing. If you or someone you know would benefit from a call please let us know. Volunteers are also welcome. Please email the Parish Office or call and leave a message on the phone 207-725-5342. Also the Vestry and volunteers will be making phone calls over the next few weeks to parishioners for conversation and pastoral care.
The Work of the Church / Meetings
We are working to find alternate ways to connect digitally in small groups and for meetings. Regularly meeting small groups are starting to meet virtually using the internet and phones if video is not available. Watch your email for more information from your group leaders. Any group leader interested in having your group meet virtually please be in contact with the parish office by email at email@example.com. We have instructions and can walk you through the process.
Zoom (video calls) already happening include:
Holy Stitchers, Men’s Group, Women’s Group, Prayer Group, Healing Prayer Team, Thursday Healing Prayer Service, Women’s Bible Study, Finance Committee, Vestry, Rectors and Warden’s meetings, Staff meetings, Choir, and Sunday Morning Family Worship and Coffee Hour.
The Parish Office
We have invested in the capability to work digitally as an administrative staff from our homes. The Parish Office will be utilized only by the limited few (entering one at a time) who need to keep us updated financially and check the mail. Those who have emergency financial needs may come to St. Paul’s on Wednesday between 10:00 am-Noon to meet with the Rector. When you arrive at the entrance off the parking lot, please use the intercom-the small black box to the right of the door-to let us know you’re there.
|Thank You for Keeping up with Your Pledge|
Because we will be continuing to pay our bills, we are even more grateful for electronic giving. To make your electronic offering to St. Paul’s go to to stpaulsmaine.org or text your gift amount to (207) 407-5069. And we will be receiving mail in our PO Box 195, so feel free to mail your check. Thank you!
Do you have at home records of any St. Paul’s organization?
If so, the archivist and the history sub-committee would love to see them. We are trying to build as complete a picture of church life as we can, including details of parish activities. It would be great if you felt you could donate any records; please give them to Charlie Priest (firstname.lastname@example.org) and if you want the records back for some reason, please talk let him know. Thank you!
|Request for retired electronics|
If you have an electronic device that you or someone you know has recently ‘retired’ from use, please email our Senior Warden, Cliff Ruprecht or the Rector with what you have. We will follow up with you. We hope to be able to equip members who wish to be connected electronically, but need a compatible device.
|Celebrating with Gratitude|
In this, our 175th year of existence, we may not be able to meet for celebratory events (which we’ll hold after this virus calms down), but the anniversary committee has come up with a common project we can all take part in, separately together.
We’d like to sponsor a project to make/collect 175 items of warm clothing to be donated to The Gathering Place, or Tedford Housing, or wherever they might be needed next winter. Hats, mittens, and socks are especially in demand, so items can be small. If you can make them, so much the better; if you can’t, perhaps you could purchase them from local craftspeople, to help both the makers and the recipients.
We’re announcing the project now so that people who knit or crochet can busy themselves now, while we are staying at home! Besides the practical value of the items, the process of making or procuring them might help us to be mindful of how blessed we are and of the pressing needs of many of our neighbors. Distribution of the items will be handled by the Outreach Committee.
Anyone interested in simple, basic patterns for making hats, socks, or mittens may access them shortly on a link we’ll provide shortly (we’re still collecting them). And anyone who would like a supply of sock or hat yarn should contact Carol Martin (email@example.com) or Charla Spann (firstname.lastname@example.org); we have several stashes we can draw upon, and we can arrange for home drop-offs. The sock patterns are for tube socks, so you don’t need to make heels! Even beginning knitters among us would be able to complete them with ease; they’re simpler to make than the mittens we made in our workshop this winter.
|Documenting the Stories|
Please be thinking now of what details you might include in an account of your experience of this difficult time. The 175th anniversary committee will shortly be asking you to write or draw a short account, in order to gain the fullest account we can of how our community has weathered this remarkable period. Are you a high school or elementary or middle school student? A grandparent? A healthcare worker? A mask-maker? A small child? A college student? Someone working from home? Someone home schooling, maybe for the first time?
We’d like to hear all of your stories. We’re still considering just how we’ll use your responses: Perhaps in a scrap book for the archives (which we’ll all be able to access once we get back together), perhaps in a vestibule display, perhaps in a booklet we could all have, similar to our Lenten meditations.
For now, please start thinking and jotting notes or sketches!
|The New Phase of St. Paul’s On Wednesday, May 13th, The Saint Paul’s Future Planning Committee met to discuss who we are as a community of faith and how we can best prepare for our future. The meeting opened by considering comments from our parishioners: Some long to return to “their” pews while others praised the church’s digital efforts and welcomed this new phase in the church’s long history. |
What is this “new phase” and what does it mean?
The committee began by considering our core values and how today’s reality affects us. Core values discussed at the vestry retreat in February and now, consisted of many themes: following the example set by Christ, stewards of a 2000+-year-old legacy of faith, outreach, hospitality and much more. Is the building a core tenet or a tool/enabler that represents and helps us focus on who we are and what we do?
We considered how the ancient Jews adjusted their worship when forced into generations-long captivity. Are we now faced with a similar faith-altering event? Several of us participate in the diocesan weekly town hall meetings and hear how other parishes are wrestling with these same issues.
Where are we?
The answer is somewhere in the above sentences.
Where do you fall?
Regardless of where you fall in the above continuum, we think this is our reality: The digital phase of worship will remain an important part of worship. Our struggle with COVID-19 is a marathon that will affect us for years to come. Fellowship and faith will be within and outside of traditional worship.
To help us plan for this, we see the following in the short term: The possible return of a small ministry (clergy and some lay readers, but no parishioners) to the church in June.
Services will be aired digitally.
Music is important; a cappella software to enhance the service is a possibility.
Aerosol contagion is a constant consideration.
Accordingly, masks have been ordered, but are you the parishioner prepared to see everyone at the altar wearing a mask? How do they/we sing and preach wearing a mask?
Looking ahead even further, how many can we permit into the nave or greater church at one time?
One formula posited 30 in the nave, but what if we were to spread out into other spaces within the church and participate via video relay?
We want to have an equitable arrangement that would ensure everyone has an opportunity to attend at some time, but perhaps not every Sunday.
By alphabet? Do we issue “electronic” tickets? What about the visitor or those who are not comfortable with the digital age? Would you donate your “slot” for someone else?
Needless to say, discernment, thought and prayer are needed and are in abundance with each of us.
We seek your prayers and look forward to your comments.
Pat Ryan and Paul Womer, co-chairs; the Revs. Carolyn Eklund and Katie Holicky, Myrna Koonce, Cliff Ruprecht, Hugh Savage, Ralph Thivierge, Susan Tyler, and Nancy Whitehouse.
|How to Help and Where to Find Help in Maine|
|Resources in Brunswick|
Link to Support Brunswick Facebook page
Link to Fred Horch’s Support Brunswick Resource Guide
Mid Coast Hunger Prevention Program – Many more people are turning to food banks for assistance as businesses close and government assistance falls short of covering expenses. Good Shepherd Food Bank has estimated that there is an increase of 39% in people needing assistance. With grocery store shelves short of product, MCHPP receives fewer food donations from stores and they must buy items directly to supply to their clients. The best way that the people of St. Paul’s can continue to support MCHPP is to write a check and send it to them. NO AMOUNT IS TOO SMALL. Their address is MCHPP, 12 Tenney Way, Brunswick, ME 04011. Thank you for your continued support!
|St. Paul’s Online This Week|
Click to Join
Zoom 9:30 am Family Story, Prayer & Sharing
Facebook 10:30 am Sunday Morning Prayer
Zoom 11:30 am Virtual Coffee Hour
Facebook 7:30 am Morning Prayer
Facebook7:30 pm Compline
Zoom9:30 amHoly Stitchers
Zoom12:30 pm Bible Study
Link to Meeting Format
7 :30 am Men’s Group – contact Al Niese at 406-2396 Rick Wile at 756-0095 or Paul Womer at 449-7425
Zoom 7:00 pm Choir
Zoom11:00 am Healing Prayer Service
ZoomNoon Prayer Group