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The Deacon's Desk - The Rev. William D. Oldland
Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
The Collect for Thanksgiving
Almighty and gracious Father, we give you thanks for the fruits of the earth in their season and for the labors of those who harvest them. Make us, we pray, faithful stewards of your great bounty, for the provision of our necessities, and the relief of all who are in need, to the glory of your Name; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.
Over the past couple of weeks I have noticed just how busy we are. Life in this community is full of opportunities to constantly be on the go. Fairs and flea markets, school and work, church and social functions crowd our calendars and fill every moment of our lives. Our daily calendars are full.
Not only are the calendars presently full but other events and activities are trying to get added onto an already full schedule. Even when we attempt to clear away some space by taking an event off the calendar, there are two or three events waiting to fill in that spot. In short, we lead incredibly busy lives.
Yet, is this business really productive? Are we accomplishing particular goals or do we feel sometimes we are spinning our wheels? If we feel we may be running out of tread on the tires and gas in the tank, then maybe we have an opportunity to slow down. In our slowing down, we may also have the opportunity to think for a moment about who we are and whose we are. We are cherished and loved children of God.
As we realize we are children of God, we may have the opportunity to slow down our racing feet and give thanks to a bountiful and gracious God. In a few short weeks we will have an opportunity to celebrate Thanksgiving. In the collect we thank God for the bounty of the earth and the laborers who gather the bounty. We also ask God to help us be faithful stewards of that bounty. Being faithful stewards begins with slowing down to give thanks. It's really hard to give thanks when we are constantly on the go.
During the next month perhaps we can vary the hectic pace of our lives slightly. We can take a few moments at the beginning of each day to offer God thanks. We can slow down the pace for a few minutes and be still and quiet to hear God's still small voice and be thankful.
Taking this opportunity to develop this habit may be helpful in the months ahead. I pray we have the courage to be deliberate in slowing down.
November Parish House Cleaning Committee:
November Altar Care:
Suzanne Howard, Chm., Patricia Bobbitt, Betty Melchert, Pam Allen
Vestry Ministry Teams & Club Reports
The morning chapter of the ECW will meet at 10:30 a.m. on Wednesday, November 8 at the home of Tymesia Forbes, 601 Country Club Drive.
The Endowment Fund
Leave a lasting legacy - remember the St. Thomas' Endowment Fund in your will. It's a gift that keeps on Giving - Year after Year.
Income: September 2000 Expense: August 2000
Pledged $ 10,341.00 Received $ 8,505.00 Shortage $ 1,836.00
Budgeted $ 10,721.00 Spent $ 14,140.00 Under spent $ 3,419.00
Thoughts on Stewardship
"O Lord, open thou our lips. And our mouth shall proclaim thy praise."
One Sunday recently, September 17 to be exact, Martha and I saw one of the most beautiful sunsets we have ever seen. The whole western part of the sky was awash in various shades of pinks, reds, and yellows. It was that kind of a moment when you pause for about fifteen to twenty minutes to try to take it all in.
The next morning at work I was still thinking about nature's wonderful display. Early in the day I called Amanda, who works in our Benefits Department in Greensboro, for some needed information. She asked me to wait for a moment so that her computer could access the required program. While we waited, I asked Amanda if she had a nice weekend. She replied, "Very nice." Then she paused a moment and asked, "Did you see that sunset last night? Enthusiastically I said, "Yes, wasn't it magnificent!" We then talked for a minute or so about where we were when we saw it and how it appeared to us. Then there were a few seconds of silence and Amanda said, "Isn't God good!"
I'm not exactly sure what I said next. I have never met Amanda and had only talked to her on two previous occasions. However, I must say that I was so impressed with her ability to share her faith with, pretty much, a total stranger. I thought about it all day. For me, this was as much an affirmation of God's presence as the gorgeous sunset.
I am not very good expressing my faith. I wish I were. However, I have resolved to do better to:
- open my eyes so that I can see God's glory and goodness;
- open my ears so I can hear others when they speak about their faith;
- and open my mouth so that I too can be a more effective witness.
Last Sunday, Bill Oldland talked to us about our need to do more than just "good works." He asked us to talk about our faith and even invite those who are not attending a church to come to church with us.
We are now approaching the time that is set aside for our Every Member Canvass. Please think about what you can do or say this year to share God's love with others.
St. Thomas' will celebrate Homecoming on Sunday, January 14. Please join us for a covered dish luncheon following the 11:00 a.m. service. St. Thomas' will provide the meat. Please mark your calendar and invite your friends and family to join us for this special event.
News from The Episcopal Day SchoolADMINISTRATORS REPORT Shelly Ellington EDS is moving right ahead. The children are settled in and learning new things every day. Speaking as a parent, my preschool son has already learned to write his first name and is constantly trying to tell us what letter words start with by sounding them out. Taking him into school each morning, I've seen the kindergarten students bringing their bikes for "B" week and building things for "C" week (carpentry). Now that makes learning fun!
And thanks again for helping us out with our fall plant sale. We have already purchased new chairs for the students and extra car seats for field trips with our "MUM" money. Next month we will begin our poinsettia sale and start working on our Christmas program!
For now, we are preparing our Christmas Parade Float for November 18th. Our float title will be "He's Got The Whole World In His Hands!" and the children will all be dressed from various countries. Look for us!!!
PRESCHOOL REPORT Carol Puryear
I was shocked when Edie said it was again time for the newsletter! The days do fly so quickly by...especially when you're having fun and this month has certainly been that! We enjoyed a fun fall trip to one our student's farms for a hayride and to get pumpkins. And for "D" week we went to Martinsville (Virginia Museum of Natural History) to see the Dinosaur exhibit! We are now getting ready to begin our "Thankful" unit and are preparing to come and be a part of your worship service on November 19. Also, don't forget to come and cheer us on at the parade on Saturday, November 18. Our theme is "He's Got The Whole World In His Hands"... and we're so thankful that He does!
KINDERGARTEN REPORT Cori Anderson
Dear Church Family,
We have been enjoying our Fall Season the past couple of weeks. The leaves have been helpful in making art projects. We are working each week on a new letter. On "E" week Eric from Safety Kleen came and taught us about Earth Academy, and we went on a egg hunt in the front yard. The eggs were full of candy. We went to the Fire Station on "F" week and learned about fire safety. (We got to spray the hose!!) We have started adding and subtracting in math. They have enjoyed working with beads to help them understand.
We do have two special need to help in our classroom: 1) We could use a record player. 2) We need a 2-3 drawer filing cabinet that is in good condition. If you could help with these please let me know. Thanks.
Community Thanksgiving Dinner
Once again, St. Thomas' is sponsoring the Annual Community Thanksgiving Dinner on Thursday, November 23. Serving and delivering of meals will begin at 11:00 a.m. Any help in the following ways would be appreciated: providing desserts or non-congealed salads, helping serve food, helping deliver food, financial gifts, and providing names of homebound persons who might like to have a meal delivered to them on Thanksgiving day. If you have any questions, call the church office at 349-3511.
Thank You Notes
The Reidsville Soup Kitchen, Inc. would like to take this opportunity to express their sincere appreciation for your recent expression of goodwill. ($396.10) Support such as yours ensures the continuation of this much needed community project.
Thanks so much!
Thank you all from the bottom of our hearts for the wonderful donations. Your kindness and caring means so much to us. God bless each of you!
Dear Friends of Habitat,
Thank you for your September and October donations to Greater Reidsville Habitat For Humanity totaling $261.51.
Your continued support and prayers to Reidsville Habitat is greatly appreciated. Final construction is being completed on House #10 and plans are being made for beginning construction on House #11. Thank you for your support in helping us give "a hand-up, and not a hand-out" and to making a difference in someone's life not only in our community but also worldwide.
Thank you for "Continuing the Tradition",
Flowers for November 2000
November 5 Dent November 12 Worth November 19 Allen November 23 (Thanksgiving) Bradford November 26 Available
2001 FLOWER CALENDAR
The 2001 Flower Calendar is now available in the Sacristy. Please begin signing up.
A few reminder from Ye Olde WebServant...
Our St. Thomas' web site continues to grow and improve thanks to the contributions that many of you have shared with me. If your particular organization or activity has more information, pictures, or updated news to add, be sure and let me know so that it will be well represented.
If you're not receiving an email update from me when major additions are made to the web site, just send me an email (firstname.lastname@example.org) and I'll be glad to add you to my list.
Remember too that the web site can be an additional tool for daily devotions with links to the upcoming Sunday's scriptures from the Lectionary, collects for Holy Days, and many of the Prayers and Thanksgivings from the BCP. Whether you're at the office or on the road traveling, you're just an internet connection away from these resources.
Be sure to make our web site a weekly stop on your cyber journeys for the latest!
ST. THOMAS MUGS FOR SALE!
We have St. Thomas mugs available for sale. The white mugs have a picture of St. Thomas on one side and our name on the other. If you are interested in purchasing one, please come by the church office. The cost is $3 for one or $5 for a set of two.
Welcome to the following people who have recently joined St. Thomas by letter of transfer:
Doug, Gwen & Nathan Brewer
Tab, Pam, Ross & Geoff Haigler
United Thank Offering (UTO)
November 5 is the fall ingathering of the United Thank Offering. UTO was begun in 1871 as "a way of showing the connection between giving thanks and giving money, united in sharing and prayer." The money collected is used to alleviate human needs world-wide. A blue UTO envelope is included in this newsletter.
Thank you to everyone that helped in any way (Cooking, Constructing, Attending, etc.) with the Apple Pie Booth at Antique Alley.
Your help is greatly appreciated!
CLARK COTTAGE PRESENTS Celtic Prayer - November 14 Explore the history of the Celtic Church in the British Isles (400-1000 AD) with discussion, meditation, and exercises designed to bring us closer to nature. Led by Vivian Hunsicker, Director of Christian Education, Holy Trinity, Greensboro. Cost: $20.00 including lunch To register, call Donna Sheppard at THE SUMMIT - 342-6163
If you have a key to the church building, please call the church office (349-3511) and leave your name. We are trying to update our records. Thanks!
Men's Club Meeting Please mark your calendar! The next Men's Club Meeting will be Thursday, November 9 at 6:30 p.m. in the Parish House.
VESTRY ELECTION PROCESS
(ANNUAL PARISH MEETING NOV. 12, 2000)
The nominating committee is presenting the following three candidates for the 2001 vestry: Tom Ham, Grace Moffitt and Bob Lee Watt. At the same time, the congregation will be informed that if they wish to nominate persons other than those presented by the vestry, they must do TWO things:
- Get the permission of the person they wish to nominate
- Inform the vestry no later than November 6.
Candidates for Vestry
5. Should be aware of oversight responsibility of a given area of congregational life (currently defined as Worship, Membership, Christian Education, Outreach, Stewardship, Buildings & Grounds, Parish Life and Pastoral Care)
All Saints' Sunday - On Sunday, November 5, we will celebrate All Saints' Sunday
Brass Quintet Celebrates All
November 5 at St. Thomas
St. Thomas welcomes an international (and yet, local) Brass Quintet on Sunday, November 5, comprising Josh Goldstein, trumpet, Ahrum Kim, trumpet, Seth Frack, trombone, Kyosuka Nakata, tuba, and St. Thomas member Rachel Rhodes, horn.
The musicians are all current North Carolina School of the Arts graduate students or former School of Music students. Ms. Rhodes continued her french horn studies at the acclaimed Peabody Institute of John Hopkins University in Baltimore, MD, and now performs and teaches extensively throughout the Triad region.
Featured during the service is the Old Hundredth Psalm Tune, arranged by Ralph Vaughn Williams, and rescored for brass and choir by Roy Douglas.
You are invited to an adult gathering at the
Saturday, November 4
Please bring a covered dish and a musical
The last Sunday in each month will be our "Birthday Sunday". We will have coffee and cake to celebrate all the birthdays in the month. Please join us for coffee following the 11:00 a.m. service each week in the Pipkin Parlor.
We are in need of a piano or keyboard for the Parish House. If you have one that you no longer use/need and would like to donate it to the church, please call the office.
The 2000 Acolyte Festival will be held on Saturday, November 18 at St. Stephen's Episcopal Church in Durham. All Acolytes, their families, clergy and Acolyte and Youth Leaders are invited. A boxed lunch will follow the service. Tickets are $8 per person. Please call Chuck Rhodes if you are interested in going - 342-4897.
Share a St. Thomas' Invitation!
We now have some St. Thomas' cards available in the Narthex to help you spread the good news about our parish! The cards (the size of a regular business card) feature a full color picture of St. Thomas', our address and phone number, email address, web site address, our Mission Statement, and a schedule of our regular weekly services.
Pick up a few to keep in your wallet and the next time you're traveling and visiting another church, pass them around with an invitation to either visit us in person or at least make a "cyber" visit to our web site.
Share the cards too with friends who may be looking for a church home in Reidsville and invite them to visit with us. Perhaps they would like to visit our web site first in order to learn more about the Episcopal church, our parish and the variety of opportunities available here, and actually "meet" some of us in action through the photo albums of some of our recent activities!
We have so many wonderful opportunities for worship, education and ministry here at St. Thomas' - let's spread the word so that we're no longer one of Reidsville's best kept secrets!