FROM THE RECTOR: CHANGE ORDER NUMBER 1
Work on the new rectory roof has begun. Since December, with short breaks at Christmastide and during Holy Week and Easter Week, I have been part of a weekly meeting with our architects, Jan Hird Pokorny, Associates, and with our contractor, West New York Restoration. I’ve been learning a lot. I’ve been very impressed by the knowledge, skills, and commitment to a historically significant building they are bringing to us. It’s a meeting I look forward to attending very much.
At our meeting on March 9, our architects recommended that we have the rectory windows on the street façade scraped and painted this spring, while the scaffolding for the roof replacement is in place. The twenty-five windows are in good condition, but they need minor repair and painting. But, nothing is simple in New York. The first floor windows are protected by metal guards. These will have to be removed, scraped, painted, and reinstalled as well. The total cost for this job $19,300.00. The average cost per window is $772.00.
These windows are part of our landmarked façade. As far as we know, no window at Saint Mary’s is a now standard size. A replacement for a single window would be $7,900.00. We priced this last summer when an interior window—not landmarked—in the rectory was replaced. We used a skilled carpenter; an excellent job was done. This replacement window cost $1,800.00. This replacement would not have been acceptable for the landmarked façade.
I told the board I would pay for one window—not sure which part of my personal budget that will come from, but I will do it this year. Dear Reader, May I talk you into paying for all or part of the painting of another one—or more? Money spent wisely now will mean fewer expensive repairs in the future. It is also a sign that we are not going to lose control of our physical plant—as many churches have. I believe Saint Mary’s is here to stay.
I don’t think any of us believes Saint Mary’s mission is the stewardship of architecture; but our church home provides an environment that invites all who enter to work on their relationship with God and with other people. It is a place of worship and welcome, not just on Sundays, but every day of the year. We will never know in this life how many lives are touched because of our stewardship of this church home in our days. One can’t begin to count the number of people who have been drawn closer to God since the doors of the parish first opened.
Saint Mary’s was founded in 1868 with a particular Christian commitment, not just to be the parish for the then-new neighborhood called “Longacre Square,” but also for a larger purpose: to be a leader in the renewal of congregational worship. In the words of the first rector, Thomas McKee Brown, “of restoring to its proper place and importance the Worship of God—the rendering Adoration to Him as a Congregational and ceremonial act—, (made beautiful, majestic and impressive by all the outward adornments, which are called the Beauty of Holiness, springing from the heart-love, within); but which in later times have been forgotten” (N. F. Read, The Story of St. Mary’s , 17). The first church opened in 1870, our present home in 1895.
When you and I talk about what draws us together to worship and serve Christ in this place, our words are of our time, but Father Brown’s phrase “heart-love” needs no explanation. It’s about loving the Risen Lord and serving him. There will be more change orders. They are not a commentary on our past, but our opportunity to insure God’s work in this place in the future. I ask your help. Happy Easter. —Stephen Gerth
YOUR PRAYERS ARE ASKED FOR Julie, Sharon, Clara, Rick, Barry, Lauren, Steve, Aaron, Sandy, Guy, Grady, Toussaint, Joanna, Rebecca, Ethel Mary, Eudine, Dennis, Burton, Lily, Sally, Sam, Jean, Heidi, Billy, Karen, Catherine, Takeem, Arpene, Mazdak, Donald, Sidney, deacon, Paulette, priest, Gaylord, priest, Harry, priest, and Louis, priest, for the members of our Armed Forces on active duty, especially Mark and Nicholas; and for the repose of the souls of Evalyn Holman and Ronald Haynes, OHC . . . GRANT THEM PEACE . . . April 24: 1878 Ella Mitchell Clarke; 1900 Susan Christine Mees; 1993 Claude Cecil Morris, Jr.
IN THIS TRANSITORY LIFE . . . Brother Ronald Haynes, OHC, died on Wednesday, April 13, 2016, at MidHudson Regional Hospital, Poughkeepsie. He was seventy-six years old and in the forty-third year of his life profession in the Order of the Holy Cross. He made his life profession on August 6, 1973, and spent most, though not all, of his life in the Order at the motherhouse in West Park, New York. He served for a number of years as Director of Associates and is remembered with great affection by all those who came to know him during that time. Brother Ronald's funeral will be held on Tuesday, May 10, 2016, at 11:00 AM at the monastery. Please keep Brother Ron, his brothers, his family and friends in your prayers . . . Evalyn Holman, the grandmother of parishioner Scott Holman, died on Wednesday, April 20. Please keep Evalyn, Scott, their family, and all who mourn in your prayers.
SAINT MARY’S TEAM FOR AIDS WALK 2016 . . . On May 15, Saint Mary’s plans to join the thirty-first annual AIDS Walk. We invite you to join our team or contribute to our team. Last year, the Saint Mary’s AIDS Walk team, eighteen people strong, ranked Number 7 in fundraising among all of the teams that walked. We raised $56,813.00. We were able to do that because we received nearly 400 separate, and very generous, contributions. Our goal this year is a very ambitious $60,000 as we walk in solidarity with people living with HIV and AIDS and with those who support and care for them. We invite you to join our team and to raise money along with us; or, if you are not able to join the team this year, we invite you to make a donation to our very determined Saint Mary’s AIDS Walk Team. You can join the team or you can make a contribution by clicking on this link. You can also direct your questions to Father Jay Smith or to co-leaders MaryJane Boland and Clark Mitchell. We are very grateful to all those who continue to support this very important outreach effort so faithfully and so generously.
THIS WEEK AT SAINT MARY'S . . . Sunday, April 24, The Fifth Sunday of Easter is Genocide Remembrance Day . . . Monday, April 25, Saint Mark the Apostle, Mass 12:10 PM & 6:20 PM . . . Wednesday, April 27, 12:10 PM, Sung Mass . . . Thursday, April 28, 12:10 PM, Mass with Healing Service.
AROUND THE PARISH . . . Clara Mun, the wife of Bishop Allen Shin, was admitted to White Plains Hospital last week. She is now at home and is doing well. Please keep Clara and Allen in your prayers . . . Altar Flowers are needed for the following Sundays: May 1, May 29 (Corpus Christi), and for all of the Sundays in June. If you would like to make a donation, please contact the parish office . . . If you would like to make a donation to help with the costs of the reception on Ascension Day, or of our hospitality efforts on Sundays please speak to Father Jay Smith or contact the parish office . . . Attendance: Last Sunday 236.
MUSIC THIS WEEK . . . The Mass setting at the Solemn Mass on Sunday is the Communion Service in C by Charles Villiers Stanford (1852–1924). Stanford was born and reared in Dublin. His early genius for classical musical forms gained him admission to Cambridge University at the age of eighteen where he quickly established a commanding reputation. He was appointed organist of Trinity College while still an undergraduate. He subsequently studied composition with Carl Reinecke in Leipzig, and later with Friedrich Kiel in Berlin. He went on to compose in almost every musical form. His work includes seven symphonies; ten operas; fifteen concertante works; chamber, piano, and organ pieces; and over thirty large-scale choral works. His sacred music continues to be the foundation of the Anglican choral tradition. Stanford, along with Charles H. H. Parry, Walter Parratt, and Edward Elgar, is credited with the establishment of the late nineteenth-century renaissance in English music. Though the popularity of Stanford’s music declined after the composer’s death, his work is now being rediscovered and newly appreciated. The simplicity of the melodic material is wonderfully offset by the luxuriant harmony that Stanford employs. Stanford did not compose a Benedictus or an Agnus Dei for this Mass and so the choir will sing Sanctus but no Benedictus. The choir will sing Agnus Dei from All Saints Service by David Hurd (b. 1950). During the ministration of Communion, the Choir will sing the motet “A new commandment.” The motet’s setting is by William Mundy (c. 1529–1591).
CONGRATULATIONS, MR. LEITSCH . . . As many Saint Marians know, parishioner Dick Leitsch, who serves as parish volunteer, parish archivist, and weekday greeter, usher, and server, was the president of the New York Chapter of the Mattachine Society in the 1960s and at the time of the Stonewall Uprising in 1969. He was a courageous activist, who was willing to fight publicly for the rights of lesbians and gay men at a time when very few felt able to do so. His central role in the so-called “Sip-In,” which took place fifty years ago, on April 21, 1965, was recently recalled in an article in the New York Times. The article is illustrated with a well-known photograph of a confrontation at a bar in Greenwich Village. A copy of the photograph is also owned and displayed at the Smithsonian Institution, in Washington, D.C. We are grateful to Dick for his witness and his ministry.
ADULT EDUCATION . . . Sunday, April 24, Matthew Jacobson will conclude his four-part series, Reading the Fathers: An Exploration of the History, Spirituality & Theology of the Early Church. On Sunday, the class will be reading the Martyrdom of Saint Polycarp . . . The Adult Forum will not meet on Sunday, May 1, because the Annual Meeting will take place that day . . . On Sunday, May 8, Stephen Morris will give a presentation on his new book, When Brothers Dwell in Unity: Byzantine Christianity and Homosexuality (McFarland, 2015) . . . During the next year or so, we hope to offer an ongoing series in the Adult Forum entitled Dealing with the Hard Stuff, in which we will hear presentations on such issues as depression, anger, and grief. On Sunday, May 15 & Sunday, May 22, parishioner Charles J. Morgan will be discussing bereavement and grief. Dr. Morgan is a member of Saint Mary’s. He is a psychiatrist who lives and practices in Connecticut. His particular areas of interest are alcoholism, mood disorders, and substance abuse. He studied at the Cornell University Medical College and did his medical residency at Yale New Haven Hospital . . . The Wednesday Night Bible Study Class will hold its end-of-year dinner on Thursday, May 12, at 6:30 PM, in Saint Joseph’s Hall.
MARK YOUR CALENDARS . . . Sunday, May 1, The Sixth Sunday of Easter: May Crowning & Annual Meeting . . . Monday, May 2, Saint Philip and Saint James, Apostles (transferred), Mass 12:10 PM & 6:20 PM . . . Wednesday, May 4, Eve of Ascension Day, Evensong 6:00 PM . . . Thursday, May 5, Ascension Day. Solemn Mass 6:00 PM. The principal celebrant and preacher at the Solemn Mass will be Bishop William Franklin . . . Sunday, May 15, The Day of Pentecost . . . Sunday, May 22, Trinity Sunday . . . Sunday, May 29, Corpus Christi . . . Saint Mary’s Summer Sunday Worship Schedule begins on May 29. The offices are said, not sung, during the summer; the Adult Forum begins its summer recess; and the choir season comes to an end. The academic-year schedule will resume on the first Sunday in October.
OUTREACH AT SAINT MARY’S . . . We are collecting warm clothing (coats, jackets, scarves, hats, and gloves) in addition to packets of socks and underwear for distribution here at the parish. Please bring donations to the parish kitchen on Sunday or contact Father Jay Smith or Sister Monica Clare, C.S.J.B. Sister Monica and parishioner Clint Best have been organizing the clothing in recent weeks in order to expedite distribution . . . We continue to collect nonperishable food items for our outreach partner, the Food Pantry at Saint Clement’s Church, 423 West Forty-sixth Street. —Jay Smith