Back in July, a lifetime ago, about thirty of our congregation met for two days with Bishop Mary and spent time doing some collective soul-searching. We were trying to identify what made All Saints’ All Saints’. What are our collective values? The result, in a nutshell was: Faith, Worship, Service, Community and Beauty. But, we felt that the nutshell version didn’t quite do it, so we also came up with a longer version for each word. The value I would like to expound on today is Community: We value the building of relationships within community.
Truly, that is what community is all about, relationships. Community cannot be accomplished by coming to church at the last minute, then zooming off right after the service. Episcopal churches are good about having a “coffee hour” for just that purpose, right after the service. In this country we drink coffee (some of us, anyway). In England, it is tea and a “digestive biscuit.” (Ask Bishop Mary about that sometime,J) In Spain and Italy, it is a glass of wine. Yet, the opportunity to meet and get to know each other is the same. Community.
I was asked by a parishioner a couple of weeks ago if we were going to have a Thanksgiving dinner this year. I hadn’t thought about it, as Rusty and I are going to Phoenix to be with our daughter and her family. But, I am happy to report that there will be a Thanksgiving dinner at 1:00 p.m. in Seccombe Hall on Thanksgiving Day. One parishioner will be baking the turkey and others will bring side dishes and dessert. Also, you may come together and give collective thanks to God in a traditional service of Morning Prayer led by Bill Reed at 10:00 that same morning. Community.
Next Wednesday will be the third and final session of “Spirit Connections.” Two members of the Muslim community will join us for dinner and conversation and share how they connect with God in their daily lives. Community.
Then, thanks to the ambition of Sherry Shollenbarger and Susan Britton, we will be bringing back our beloved Dickensian dinner on 12th December. Please make your reservations by 6 December. It will be a joyous evening of music, poetry and story. There will be an opportunity to help the wider community of the children of St. Patrick’s, Haiti, and Epiphany Lutheran and Episcopal Church in Marina. Community
This is the time of year when opportunities for community abound. We want everyone to be a part of our community. If you want to participate in any of these events and need help with transportation, please don’t be bashful, let the office know and arrangements will be done.
Faith, Worship, Service, Community and Beauty. This is All Saints’. See you on Sunday.
Claudia Ward, Senior Warden
All Saints’ Episcopal Church