| 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 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
The Sixth Sunday of Easter, May 17, 2020
10:30 Morning Prayer, on Facebook Live
Click to link to Worship BookletClick to link to Announcements
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Sunday, at 11:30 am
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Acts 17:22-31 1 Peter 3:13-22John 14:15-21 Psalm 66:7-18
The Lectionary Page
Daily Morning Prayer and Compline – Join us every morning and evening on St. Paul’s Facebook Live for Morning Prayer and Compline, 7:30 a.m. and 7:30 p.m. Make sure you have your Prayer Book with you. If you need a prayer book come by St. Paul’s Wednesday morning to pick one up.
Graduates to be Celebrated!
Please email us (
email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, or email@example.com) 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.
A Special Request for Pentecost Participation
Calling all multilingual speakers! At our Pentecost worship on May 31st we will carry on our tradition of having one of our lessons (Acts 2:1-11) read in a variety of languages. If you would like to participate or have questions please email Rev. Katie Holicky at firstname.lastname@example.org ASAP. We will be creating a video over the next week or so to share as part of our worship on this special feast day!
Important Feasts of the Church in May
Thursday, May 21, Ascension Day 11:00 a.m.
Join us for a Celebration of Healing and Prayer on ZoomSunday, May 31, Pentecost9:30 a.m.
Family Worship Zoom Celebration: Lots of red for the Holy Spirit!
10:30 a.m. Morning Prayer Pentecost Facebook Live Stream Celebration 11:30 a.m. Wear your red clothes for Zoom Coffee Hour
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 stpaulsmaine.breezechms.com/give/online 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!
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, Church School, and Sunday Morning Family Worship.
An Invitation from the Men’s Group
Men interested in learning more about and/or becoming active in the St. Paul’s Wednesday morning Zoom Men’s Group (8:15-9:15), are encouraged to open and read the one-page version of norms we have agreed to follow. Please call one of the following members if you would like to be come to a meeting so we can better welcome you when you come. We can also tell you on the phone a little about what we do. Please feel free to call: Rick Wile at 756-0095, Al Niese at 406-2396 or Paul Womer at 449-7425. Thanks! We look forward to having you come!The Parish
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 or other immediate 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.
Request for Retired Electronic Devices
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.
Forward Day by Day booklets
For those who are missing the Forward Day by Day booklets, you may now access the daily readings online at https://prayer.forwardmovement.org/the_daily_readings.php
175 CelebrationThe History Committee of the 175th Anniversary is including weekly excerpts describing our church’s growth. Here’s the fourth in the series:From The Story of the First Hundred Years of St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, we read: “In the winter of 1854-55, a new furnace was installed, and in 1858 the present vaulted ceiling was put in, to do away with a most annoying echo.” Thus, from its early history St Paul’s Church was intent on improving acoustics and providing ?ne music as an integral part of worship.
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!
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!
|Community Information Mid Coast Hunger Prevention ProgramMany 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!How to Help and Where to Find Help in Maine at Maine Helps|
Local Brunswick Support Resources:
Pray for the congregations of St. Martin’s in Palmyra, St. Andrew’s in Winthrop and Winthrop Center Friends’ Church (Quaker)Pray for The Vicarage, families and staff.Pray for Anderson, Andrew, Cedric, Jason, Michael, Richard, and all in the military.
Pray for the cousin of Sally Jeanne Kappler, Michael Wallace Herron, who died this week of COVID-19. Rest eternal, grant to him, O Lord, and let light perpetual shine upon him.Thanksgivings for the birth of Genevieve Leigh, granddaughter of Melanie and Bob Chicoria.We pray for:Christy, Mathew, Ryan & fami-ly, Ethel, Norma, Riley, Ray, David, Judi, Carolyn B., Nick, Bob, Dave, Eleanor, Peggy, Alan, Sam, Matt, Linda, Kathy, Skip, the Blackburn family, Cathy, Willow, Roxanne, Avery, Sara, Tierra, Ann, and Allen Bernie, Reeve, Victor, Travis & family, Ben, Kerry, Sally, Diane, Therese, Caleb, Sarah, Nate, Sue, Elijah, Cadin, Bridget, Steve, Ted, Garrett, Elliot, Marcia, Lakshmi in thanksgiving, Cameron, Hannah, Lynn, and Caroline Carol, Don, Priscilla, Rick, Alison, Rick, Trent, Betsey, Anne, Bruce, Jeannie, the Hawkes family, Sophia, Rhonda, Emily, Steve, Marnie, Dean, baby Thomas, Gair, Laurie, Sharon and family, June and Alan, Annie, Sarah, and CaroleCall or email the parish office if you would like a name to be placed on the prayer list. The names will be removed after three months, unless otherwise notified.
|St. Paul’s Online This WeekClick to Join|
Sunday 5/17Zoom9:30 am
Virtual Coffee Hour
Facebook 7:30 am Morning Prayer
Facebook 7:30 pm Compline
Zoom9:30 am Holy Stitchers
Zoom 12:30 pm Bible Study
Wednesday 5/20 See meeting format
7:30 am Contact Al Niese 406-2396 Rick Wile 756-0095 Paul Womer 449-7425
Zoom 7:00 pm Choir
Zoom 11:00 am Healing Prayer Service
Zoom Noon Prayer Group