Making Ministry Happen at St. Paul's: Stewardship and Giving
|Frequently Asked Questions About Pledging|
|RSVP to the Stewards' Supper.|
Calendar of Events for the Annual Giving Campaign
|October 6, 2012
||STEWARDS’ SUPPER at Senior Center, 4:30 to 8:30 p.m.
||Kick-off Annual Campaign Sunday; Jim preaches on stewardship; Stewardship team distributes pledge packets by hand at door for all 3 services
Stewardship team distributes pledge packets by hand at door for all 3 services
||Bruce Carveth presents on Social Justice Ministries
||Janice Dean presents on University and Christian Education Ministries
||Darren Ball presents on Enhancing Programs for Families and Children
|Sunday, November 11, 2012
||Ingathering of pledges during Sunday 10 a.m. service; Official end of Annual Giving Campaign
Blessed to Be a Blessing
How St. Paul's Changes Lives
Restoration of the Episcopal Church in My Life through St. Paul’s
by Lawrence Elliott
I have been at St. Paul's just a year now and I am extraordinarily grateful and excited to be here. From the first, the people and clergy of St. Paul's have been friendly, warm and inviting. I am grateful to have the Episcopal church restored to my life, to be welcomed as a gay man, and to have opportunities to know and be known more deeply by one of the clergy. As an older person that seemed important to me.
St. Paul's provides for me in many other ways: Adult Education and exposure to theology I would otherwise not have; my first trip to Shrine Mont; Community Night; Sunday and special services; music, prayer, preaching and scripture. My growth, healing and safety that have come to me in this past year allowed me to write my father’s name in the necrology this All Soul’s Day. I haven’t otherwise acknowledged him in any positive way since he died in 1972.
Service outside the church is important to me and at St. Paul's there are many opportunities to serve. Whether through Generation WISE, the flower guild, the acolyte team, or reading with the lector team (“and he fell face down on the ground” my first reading, the story of David & Goliath). For me, this service lets me move into the heart of St. Paul's, which wraps itself around me.
St. Paul's helps me keep my heart open to God’s love, to the light of Christ in all men and to the healing inspiration of the Holy Spirit. In return I support it lovingly and as generously as I can with a thoughtful, prayerful response to the call of Stewardship. The ministries of St. Paul's are far too important for me to keep silent.
See video of Darren Ball's testimonial on Sunday, November 4, 2012 here.
by Diane Wakat
Three years ago I had reached the depths of close to despair that I would ever belong to a faith community that helped me foster a closer relationship with God – rather than the church I’d spent my entire life attending & trying to benefit from spiritually. Instead I felt their teachings, pronouncements and proscriptions were forcing me further and further away – even though I participated as a lector, Eucharistic minister and mass coordinator.
The ‘final straw’ came when the church hierarchy decreed that not everyone was “acceptable” for even voluntary ministry. That felt like a day of doom, then became a day of decision: find a church home or disengage entirely.
One of St. Paul’s members whom I knew through business contacts listened to my plight and suggested I attend service one Sunday. I did, and my goodness! A woman deacon was introduced that day. She looked like me! And ALL were welcome to receive communion! What kind of church was this that accepted everyone, with no barriers? The only negative was the quality of tea served at community hour after the service.
All the issues were solved. I named myself the ‘tea minister’ to provide a good tea supply, volunteered to usher to get to know people (even though I knew nothing about St. Paul’s), joined the Salvation Army 3rd Thursday night dinner service, and traveled to see 2 (2!) women ordained in MY church!
Changed my life?! Yes, gave me the spiritual opportunity I yearned for. Pester me for donations? No, happy to help keep this wonderful church alive and vibrant for other people like me who need and seek a spiritual home. Just keep the doors open and the tea kettle hot.
"I Am the Future of St. Paul's"
by Janice Dean
(See video of Janice Dean's testimonial on Sunday, October 28, 2012 here.)
Good morning. My name is Janice Dean… and *I* am the future of the Episcopal Church.
Well, not just me, thank God. But people who were like I was when I came to St. Paul’s—young and unchurched. I grew up in a secular household but have always been more spiritually curious than my family. In high school, my closest friends and mentors were all Christians, and this showed in the way they treated me and other people. So when I came to UVa, I was primed to seek knowledge and experience of Christianity. I met more Christians in belief and action, including my now-husband Danny. When Danny and I started looking for a church, two friends who lived in the Canterbury House and attended the 5:30 service invited us to join them for Canterbury and worship. We went. I never would have thought, when I first walked into the Canterbury House and St. Paul’s Chapel, that seven years later I would have been baptized, married, and confirmed in this church, or that I would be in my third year serving on its Vestry.
But I *am* here. And the reason I am here is this church’s ministry to the students at the University of Virginia. Canterbury offers a safe place where students can come and ask the questions that reveal ignorance and doubts. Canterbury, all three worship services, Community Night, and many other opportunities at St. Paul's offer students the chance for Christian fellowship. As a UVa student, I was lost in the dark sea of feeling mediocre for the first time in my life, but St. Paul’s was a beacon of the promise of God’s unconditional love. Each of you is why St. Paul’s is that beacon, and for that I continue to pour out my gratitude through giving back to this church.
St. Paul’s has a special history and character that allows us to minister to UVa students. We were founded as a mission church to serve the “neglected” Episcopal students at the University, and this has been at the heart of our identity for over 100 years. We benefit from our relationship with UVa by our fellow parishioners who are graduate students and faculty from many disciplines, and the heart for teaching that they bring to our parish. We are also a parish that loves to learn, where we encourage you to bring your brains into church and use them.
St. Paul’s doesn’t just reach those who walk into our buildings, though. This year the University Commission is reaching out to the UVa community in new ways. Before move-in day, five of us chalked advertisements around the first-year dorms, promoting St. Paul’s location, the service times, dinner after the 5:30, Canterbury, and our move-in day festivities. On move-in Saturday, we set up tables on the front steps, where we greeted students, families, and all passers-by, offered refreshments, and had conversations about St. Paul’s and life at UVa. We are also hosting a reception after this service for families and friends visiting their students on Family Weekend. We also hosted a reception after the 10am service on Family Weekend for friends and families visiting their students. It was great to have them with us.
My experience of giving to St. Paul’s is one of great joy. When Danny and I received our first paychecks, one of the first checks we wrote was to St. Paul’s. I vividly remember the joy with which I put that check into the offering plate. I was joyous because I could finally start giving back to the church that had given me so much. That joy does not end, and I have not even come close to repaying this community for your gifts to me. But I will continue to pour out my gratitude to you in every way I can, and I ask you to also show your gratitude through boldly giving to St. Paul’s. Amen.
Being present with the Good Samaritan at St. Paul’s
by Tim Rambo
Ever since I was very young, I have been struck by the story of the Good Samaritan (even though it didn’t have the fantastic song offered by “The Little Drummer Boy”). The practical, tangible aspect of how one can apply and display our call to love one another really made sense to me, that we’re all God’s children, that as we’ve done it unto the least of others, we’ve done unto Jesus.
Coming from a family that includes several generations of medical missionaries, I’ve been blessed with good modeling as I’ve tried to address, and be mindful of, the needs of others, in my personal and professional life. Of course, I’ve done quite poorly at it at times and have only found real relief and reparation when I’ve come back to the basic Christian tenets of forgiveness and love for one another. For the past 10 years, St. Paul’s has offered an important spiritual path to me as I strive to keep on track, to reach out to others from a Christian base.
Just knowing about, even when not directly involved with, the plethora of service and outreach opportunities that St. Paul’s offers, I find strength and connection knowing that it’s there, that the people sitting around me in the pews, wearing robes up front, attending another service, etc. are part of the great stewardship that makes St. Paul’s a beacon internally and externally for Christianity. In college, I enjoyed a service organization’s motto (I don’t think Jesus coined it): “Think globally. Act locally.” I see St. Paul’s as espousing “Pray together. Act locally. Act globally.” Of course, we can choose any number of ways in which to share our gifts at St. Paul’s. I appreciate that -- that I can say “no” when I need to and that it’s easy to find something to do when “yes” is on the table. In the past 13 months, I’ve especially enjoyed the development of the weekly Men’s Bible Study. The logistics were a snap thanks to church support, and the fellowship and learning has been very meaningful.
So, Christmas is approaching and I’ll have license to turn up the volume to “The Little Drummer Boy,” but I am ever grateful for the yearlong opportunity that St. Paul’s offers me to be present with the Good Samaritan and to find rejuvenation in my Christian faith through the work of our church community.
See video of Bruce Carveth's testimonial on Sunday, October 21, 2012 here.
Watching my children grow up at St. Paul’s
by E. D. Rambo
We moved to Charlottesville with a 3 year old and a 9 month old and landed at St. Paul’s in part because of family already attending, in part because it is a good fit and we have never regretted it. I have loved becoming more involved in the Church, getting to know the wonderful community here, the welcoming and inclusive nature of the parish as a whole. But, what really came to the fore as I pondered what to write is how glorious it is to watch my children grow up at St. Paul’s. Whether it is James (now 6) and Nell (now 4) hoping that there will be a reception after church that they can help the Martha’s Guild set up (and the loving acceptance of that help), or Josephine (now 17 months) being passed from person to person so I can have a conversation during coffee hour, or the lively theological discussions in the car, on Sundays and other days, regarding what God looks like or where God is, St. Paul’s is part of the essential fabric of their lives. This happy, uncomplicated relationship with God and the Church is one of the true blessings and joys of our lives, and I am thankful for St. Paul’s for being our Church Home.
St. Paul’s: A Healing Home
By Margaret Haupt
Robert Frost in his poem The Death of the Hired Man famously wrote, "home is the place where when you have to go there, they have to take you in.” For almost twenty years, St. Paul’s has done more than take me in. It is my spiritual home; a place where I learn, pray and have the opportunity for service. It is also a place where I have celebrated, and been comforted and supported, just like in a good home.
Here’s an example: at one time I approached Rod Sinclair, a parishioner and priest, to help me with a memorial service for my mother. She had died a tragic death, so common to alcoholics, and I had been too traumatized at the time of her death to have a memorial service. Finally I was ready. One Sunday, mustering my courage, I approached Rod after the service and asked him if he would help me. He first responded with sympathy. “Margaret, I didn't know your mother died, when did she die?” “Well, I stammered, it was 20 years ago.” He didn’t ask any questions. Instead, with a simple, private service in the St. Paul’s chapel, he helped me put to rest years of pain.
St. Paul’s is a home that offers healing with prayer shawls, a Stephen Ministry, and healing prayers on Sundays during communion at the 10:00 service. These are not offered for someone else. They are offered for all of us, for you and for me. When a friend's husband was dying of brain tumors and was rapidly losing his mobility, I suggested she get a handicapped sticker for her car. She responded, “Oh, we can manage.” “Who,” I asked, “did she think the handicapped stickers were for if not for her and her husband?” But all of us are like this, we think the prayers shawls, the Stephen Ministry, the healing prayers are for someone else. By offering these ministries, St. Paul’s is saying, “look, life gets hard for all of us at times.” Sometimes we're celebrating a wedding or Christmas or a baptism, but sometimes we are overcome with worry about a child, a job loss, a terminal illness, or a marriage that is failing. St. Paul reminds us that we are to carry one another's burdens, to love our neighbor as ourself. But we can only be there for one another, if, in our own times of pain and loss, we are willing to reach out.
When Sister Campbell was with us a few weeks ago, she reminded us that Jesus’ message is “we are all in this together”; we don’t have to keep hidden the struggle, the anguish or the joy in our lives. When we can share the truth of what is going on with us we become the community Jesus calls us to be.
Last fall we began St. Paul’s first Stephen Ministry, based on the idea that all Christians are ministers. It is in place to help us carry one another’s burdens. A Stephen Minister was at the bedside of a dying friend. The dying person asked, “Where is God in all of this?” The response was, and always is, God is here with you and with me. As Christians we ARE God’s hands in the world, and St. Paul’s equips each of us in varied ways to do God’s work. Stephen Ministry is a ministry of presence, a ministry of listening and a sacred privilege.
I hope St. Paul’s is your spiritual home too. Your pledges support the ministries which are close to my heart. As we all know, every home must be supported. In closing, we ask you to be bold in your generosity with St. Paul's this year. Help us to continue to support these ministries and others that make St. Paul’s a loving home.
Why I am grateful for St. Paul’s
by Ashley Faulkner
The great Anglican poet William Langland once wrote, “Blessed is he who reads the scriptures and converts the words into works, fully to his power.” It sounds even better in Langland’s original fourteenth-century English, sprinkled generously with Latin. Langland attributes the sentiment, for reasons unknown, to St. Bernard of Clairvaux. Yet whoever said it, it is very true—capturing the ethical dimension of scripture reading, and of all reading. The idea is: We have not really read something until we have acted upon it.
As an English teacher in the secular world, I have occasion to hear words being subjected to just about every possible interpretation that human ingenuity can conjure—but to my ear the most important interpretation is found in words’ ethical register. To read is not just to parse the written terms (fundamental as this is). To read is to ask, “What then shall we do?” (Luke 3:10). That’s why one of the things I love most about Anglican spirituality is its liturgical bent: on hearing that a friend goes to a different church, my first question is, “What do they do at your church?” Not what tenets do you hold, but what do you do.
Something that I have thoroughly enjoyed doing at St. Paul’s is daily morning prayer. (Monday through Friday at 8am. Be there.) In that service, we say a prayer—every day—that includes the words, “Almighty God, give us such an awareness of your mercies that with truly thankful hearts we may show forth your praise, not only with our lips, but in our lives, by giving up ourselves to your service.” And one of the ways that we live out such a prayer is in stewardship. Stewardship is something done, not separate from liturgy and scripture, but a logical part of them—part of reading, part of prayer. I have not actually read Jesus’s teachings on hospitality until I have begun to be more hospitable; I have not yet begun to read Christ’s teaching on generosity until I have given. Every day, people at St. Paul’s, in service and classes, meals and prayers, are turning the scripture’s words into works. Blessed are they.
"Why I am grateful for St. Paul’s"
by Jane Rotch
St. Paul’s is like a family for me. When I return from traveling I don’t feel truly “back home” until I have crossed the threshold at St. Paul’s. I’ve been in this parish for 54 years, knowing and loving five different rectors. I have found the help I needed at many different times in my life through my involvement in St. Paul’s, whether as a green newcomer, or a puzzled parent, or as a new widow. I am grateful!
All my life I’ve learned from other people’s examples. This parish has been a wonderful hotbed of good examples. I still remember an Adult Ed panel of young parents and Tony Potter’s eloquent testimony. Through the years people at St. Paul’s have challenged me many times and I have been nudged into doing jobs I hadn’t believed I could manage – there can be a lot of on-the-job learning of new skills in a parish! (My “temporary” agreement to produce a parish newsletter lasted for nine years!) Involvement in small groups brought me new friendships and a deep connection to people I might not otherwise have known. Time and again I have been broadened.
Study has always been a gift, and good preaching. Opportunity for service is another gift I value. Cooking a monthly supper on a Salvation Army team has been a constant in my life for many years, a hands-on ministry which feels useful, as does helping host our PACEM guests. The privilege of singing in the Senior Choir, has given me joy and constant learning.
I am grateful for so many gifts received at St. Paul’s. What to do with my gratitude? My father taught me early on that though we cannot “pay back” something which has been done for us, we can “pass it on”, do something good for someone else. Giving can be contagious. I have received so much that I want to be a giver also. I am grateful to God for the gift of my life. Therefore I choose to channel money and time and talents to St. Paul’s as an act of thanksgiving.
THE ANNUAL GIVING TEAM
A St. Paul's Ministry
Left to right: Peggy Galloway, Jane Butler, Gwynn Crichton, Janice Dean,Tara Little, Charles Lancaster, Susan Cluett
St. Paul’s Memorial Church
Vestry Stewardship Statement
After thoughtful discussion and prayerful reflection, all members of the St. Paul's Vestry have done the following:
- Examined our individual pledges with respect to proportional giving and challenged ourselves to increase that percentage for 2013;
- Prayerfully made a pledge as part of the 2013 Annual Giving Campaign; and
- Offered our time, talents and gifts to the glory of God.
The Vestry believes that we at St. Paul's are called to give with joy and generosity, in thanksgiving to God for our church community and for life's abundance.
We invite all members of the congregation to “Be Bold in the Power of the Spirit!” in making a pledge to support St. Paul’s ministries in 2013.
St. Paul’s Memorial Church 2012 Vestry
Jay Bourgeois, Jane Butler, Bruce Carveth, Susan Cluett, Gwynn Crichton Co-Chaplain, Janice Dean Co-Chaplain, Peggy Galloway, Sandy Gilliam, Joel Hoppe, Christopher E. Lee, Tara Little, Wayne Nolen, E.D. Rambo, Lloyd Snook Junior Warden, Christie Thomas Senior Warden, Robert Viccellio
Last Updated on Wednesday, 14 November 2012 11:31