From Father Smith: Mission and Outreach at Saint Mary’s
The newly constituted Mission & Outreach Committee has now met twice, once in December and again last Sunday, and so this may be an opportune time to tell the friends and members of the parish what the Committee has been doing and what its plans are for the future. First of all, it should be said that the Committee is merely the latest incarnation of an effort that has taken on different forms over the years. At the moment, we are building on the efforts of my predecessor, Father John Beddingfield and a number of parishioners in recent years. Father Beddingfield not only helped provide us with the theoretical and theological framework for outreach at Saint Mary’s in his classes on the history of social-work and social-justice efforts in the Anglo-Catholic tradition, he also oversaw our efforts related to homelessness and housing, began our ongoing relationship with the parish of San Juan Evangelista in Villanueva, Honduras, and directed several other projects during his time here as curate.
The Committee has decided to begin a period of research, prayer, study, and discernment in order to define goals, but is determined to remain active and to either undertake or continue several projects during this time of discernment. The members of the Committee seem eager not just to talk but also to make sure that things get done. I myself have two goals for the next eighteen months or so: the first is to work with the Committee to identify, raise up, and support lay leadership in this area; the second and related goal is to encourage ideas to “percolate up” from within the Committee and from within the parish as a whole. What this means in practice is that various ideas are brought to the table during Committee meetings; those ideas are discussed in order to provide feedback, and individual members are encouraged to proceed to see if they can make the idea work. Members of the staff, including myself, are here to provide a certain amount of logistical and clerical support and other members of the Committee will provide encouragement and practical support (or may join the effort), but the initial responsibility for leadership belongs to the member who proposes the idea. I hope that we can be creative and imaginative, as well as realistic about human and financial resources during this time.
With respect to current and proposed projects: although we are not able to undertake a mission trip to Honduras this year, we hope to be able to continue the parish’s financial support of the Villanueva parish. Parishioner and deacon-in-training, Rebecca Weiner, is overseeing this effort. She remains in contact with the pastor of the parish and is gathering information about the work being done at San Juan Evangelista, so we can give Saint Marians a clearer idea of how their donations have been used. Rebecca is also looking into the possibility of Saint Mary’s working with Father Merz and the Episcopal students at NYU at a shelter at First Presbyterian Church.
We are eager to continue the parish’s participation in the annual AIDS Walk. MaryJane Boland will be providing leadership for that effort and she hopes to increase the number of both donors and walkers this year. Michael McNett will soon be giving a presentation to the Committee about a medical project he’s been involved with in South Africa. There is also a possibility that another parishioner or staff member might travel with Michael when he next goes to South Africa. Dale Reynolds and Elizabeth Nisbet are working in the area of advocacy, education and peace and justice issues and will be reporting to the Committee on the possibility of inviting a speaker at one of our meetings or to give a talk or lecture, something to which we might invite our fellow parishioners.
The toy and gift drive for AIDS Action International (AAI) was a big success this year. However, a significant number of toys were donated too late to be given to AAI. (Most of these were donated by neighbors who were unaware of this year’s early deadline.) Carol Pepper suggested that we donate those items to the New York Foundling Hospital and she and I will be working to make that happen in the next few weeks. Reha Sterbin has begun knitting cold-weather clothing items for mariners from warmer climes who visit the ports of New York and New Jersey. (This is a project of the Seamen’s Church Institute). Reha is looking to recruit other knitters and to disseminate information about patterns, obtaining yarn from the Institute, and other procedures.
Saint Mary’s has begun a cooperative relationship with the Food Pantry of Saint Clement’s Church, 46th Street. The Pantry serves between 400 and 500 households per week, most of them neighbors of our two parishes. We have been inviting friends, visitors and parishioners to bring non-perishable food items and place them in the basket at the back of the church or in Saint Joseph’s Hall during Coffee Hour or to give a money donation. (Lightly-used items of clothing can also be donated for the Pantry and a number of members and neighbors of the parish have already done so.) Parishioners have already responded enthusiastically to this effort. We delivered around $500.00 worth of food to Saint Clement’s last week. I have also heard from a couple of parishioners that they plan to make cash donations. The Committee feels that the Food Pantry project is worthwhile since it is local, its clients are our neighbors, and it is possible to make a tangible difference right away. We plan to publicize this project more fully in the near future, since the Committee believes that it is important to do research and provide education about the issues of hunger in our neighborhood and in the rest of New York City; and we hope that those who can will find a way to make a regular donation to this effort. (Perhaps once per month might work for many households?) The Food Pantry operates each Saturday, except the first Saturday of every month. Food is normally sorted and bagged the day before. If you would like to volunteer, either on Friday afternoons or Saturday mornings, or if you would like to make a cash donation, please speak to me; and thanks to all who have already given so generously. Jay Smith
SUNDAY PRAYER LIST . . . Your prayers are asked for Joanne, who is hospitalized, and for Rosanne, Benjamin, Patrick, Sean, Rosemarie, Bernadette, Jocelyn, Mimi, Marcia, Richard, Deloris, Mary, Gloria, Samuel, Russell, Stephen, Brooke, Donna, Laura, Margaret, Madeleine, Marc, Janelle, Jennie, William, Gert, Mary, Terry, Daisy, Rozalind, Rick, Emil, Religious, Charles, Priest, and Stephen, Priest; and for the members of our Armed Forces on active duty, especially Christopher, Omar, Curtis, Timothy, Benjamin, Marc, Keith, Dennis, Terrance, Steven, Patrick, Andrew, and Brendan; and for the repose of the soul of Ovidiu . . . GRANT THEM PEACE . . . January 18: 1883 Isabella Esmeralda Malvania; 1890 Daniel Lewis; 1899 Joanna Schneiders; 1902 Henry Meyer; 1920 Stanley Matthews, Jr.; 1955 Marie Chibouk; 1969 Rose Ross; 1985 Phyllis Brackett; 1995 Giselle Klopstock.
FROM THE MUSIC DIRECTOR . . . The prelude at Solemn Mass on the Second Sunday after Epiphany, January 18, is the chorale prelude on Wie schön leuchtet der Morgenstern (“How brightly shines the morning star”), BuxWV 223 by Dieterich Buxtehude (c. 1637-1707). The setting of the Mass ordinary is Missa “Il bianco e dolce cigno” (“The sweet, white swan”) by Stefano Bernardi (c. 1585-1636). An Italian composer, Bernardi worked for a time in Rome and later lived in Salzburg, where he composed a large-scale Te Deum for the consecration of that city’s cathedral. Much of his Church music, including today’s setting, is written in what was to him an old-fashioned style, the music of Palestrina (who was several generations older than Bernardi). This mass is based upon a madrigal of Jacques Arcadelt. At the ministration of Communion, the choir sings the motet Omnes de Saba venient (“All those from Sheba shall come”) by Jacob Handl (1550-1591). The Saint Mary’s Singers meet at 3:00 PM this Sunday, January 18, to sing for Solemn Evensong. New members are always welcome . . . James Kennerley
THIS WEEK AT SAINT MARY’S . . . The Rector began his sabbatical on January 1, 2009. He returns to New York at the end of March and to the office on April 1, 2009 . . . On Saturday, January 17, Father John Merz will hear confessions . . . Sunday, January 18, at 10:00 AM, on the second floor of the Mission House: Father Mead will teach part two of a seven-part series on the Revelation to John . . . January 18–25: Week of Prayer for Christian Unity . . . The Saint Mary’s Singers will rehearse on Sunday, January 18, at 3:00 PM . . . Christopher Houlihan will give an organ recital at 4:40 PM on January 18 . . . Monday, January 19, Martin Luther King, Jr., Day, Federal Holiday schedule: only the noon services are offered, the Parish Office is closed, and the church closes at 2:00 PM . . . Father Mead’s class on the Prophets resumes on Wednesday, January 21, at 7:00 PM, after the evening Mass . . . On Saturday, January 24, Father Smith will hear confessions. Confessions are also heard by appointment.
AROUND THE PARISH . . . We need volunteers to “un-decorate the church” on Saturday, January 17, 10:00 AM–3:00 PM, in order to dismantle the Crèche. If you have questions, please contact Dale Bonenberger or Rick Austill . . . A special word of thanks to those who have taken on a good deal of extra work during this time of transition in the parish and finance offices: Trustees Jim Dennis, Steven Heffner and Randy Morgan have been putting in a lot of hours dealing with payroll and other personnel and accounting issues. Dick Leitsch continues to provide invaluable clerical and other assistance around the parish, while continuing his work as Saint Mary’s archivist. Clint Best and Bob Picken have been helping out in the Finance Office, as they have so frequently in the past. MaryJane Boland, in addition to providing leadership as the Stewardship Campaign’s chairperson, has been taking on a lot of clerical duties related to the Campaign that, in the past, have been handled by staff members, and we are grateful. Finally, the members of the staff, and indeed all Saint Marians owe a very great debt of gratitude to Barbara Klett, assistant treasurer and director of the Finance Office. Barbara has given countless hours of her time over the course of many years to help manage the business affairs of the parish. Since December, those hours have increased markedly and she has had to take on work formerly done by others; and the work has been considerable, especially since so many end-of-year tasks have needed doing. We are very grateful . . . Thank you very much to Steven Eldredge, Carol Pepper, and Grace Treiman for donating food for last week’s outreach meeting and for our receptions after Evensong and Benediction . . . Thank you to Rick Austill, Scott Holman, Dick Leitsch, Samuel Espino, Marie Rosseels, and José Vidal for taking on the less-than-glorious job of dismantling the Christmas decorations in the church last Saturday and Sunday . . . Flowers are needed for most Sundays and feast days this year. (There are no flowers on the altar during most of Lent or Advent.) Generous donors have already given flowers for January 18, January 25, and Candlemas. If you would like to donate flowers for the altars and shrines, please contact Father Mead . . . The Annual Meeting and Mass of the Society of King Charles the Martyr will be held on Saturday, January 31, 2009, at 11:00 AM at Saint Stephen’s Church in Providence, Rhode Island. For more information please contact www.skcm-usa.org . . . Saint Mary’s 5th Annual Super Bowl Party will be held following Evensong on Sunday, February 1, 2009. The party is a pot-luck centered around Father Mead’s “Abusive Chili.” (Father Mead has finally agreed to proceed this year with a somewhat lighter hand. We understand that the chili should be somewhat less “abusive” this time.) We will watch the game in Saint Joseph’s Hall . . . For those Saint Marians who don’t know anything about football or who think football is a different game called soccer, Father Mead will once again offer a “class” entitled “Football for Anglo-catholics” before the game begins. Attendance: Last Sunday, 1 Epiphany 294.
CHRISTIAN FORMATION & EDUCATION FOR ADULTS . . . All classes meet in the Arch Room on the Second Floor of the Mission House (133 West 46th Street). Sunday classes meet at 10:00 AM. Coffee and doughnuts are provided. The Wednesday Night Bible Study and other weeknight classes meet at 7:00 PM. Detailed information on upcoming classes is below. All are welcome at every class. Matthew Mead
THE REVELATION ACCORDING TO JOHN . . . On Sundays during Epiphany Season (January 18, 25 & February 1, 8, 15 & 22) Father Mead and Father Smith will lead a class examining the most famous apocalyptic book of the Bible.
THE PROPHETS . . . The Wednesday Night Dinner and Bible Study will resume on January 21, 2009. The class, led by Father Mead, has been studying the narrative accounts of the prophets in the Books of Samuel, Kings, and Chronicles. We will conclude that portion at the end of January and begin reading prophetic books, beginning with the Book of Amos. A (minimum) $5 donation is requested from all who attend to cover the cost of dinner.
THE PSALMS . . . The Reverend Peter Powell will lead a class on the Psalms in Lent 2009 (Sundays, March 1, 8, 15, 22). Father Powell is the president of the Interfaith Housing Corporation, Westport, Connecticut. He is a graduate of Virginia Theological Seminary and holds advanced degrees from Princeton and the University of the South.
HOSPITALITY AT SAINT MARY’S . . . During this time of belt-tightening and budget cuts, we would like to invite those members and friends of Saint Mary’s, who are able to, to consider making a donation to support the parish’s hospitality efforts. There are several ways that one can do that. First, you can sponsor a feast-day reception. (We try, when possible, to pay for such receptions through the generous gifts of friends and parishioners.) The next planned reception will be on Candlemas, on February 2. If you would like to sponsor that reception, please let me know, or, if you would like to plan and host the Candlemas reception, please contact me as soon as possible. Second, you can donate unopened boxes of cookies or other sweets or pastries for use at our receptions on Sunday evenings after Evensong & Benediction (this is an especially effective way to banish those too-tempting simple carbohydrates from the home as one attempts to meet one’s weight-loss goals!) Third, you can make a cash donation (none is too small!). Checks should be written to the Church of Saint Mary the Virgin and “Hospitality Fund” should be written in the memo line. Finally, if you feel called to be a server and host at a reception, please let me know. The only job requirements are a calm and welcoming disposition, a friendly smile, the ability to engage newcomers in conversation, and a willingness to be helpful and to work with others to organize, prepare, and host receptions and other events. Since Saint Mary’s welcomes so many visitors, our hospitality efforts are an essential means of evangelism and church growth. If you are interested, please speak to me and thank you for your help. Jay Smith
STEWARDSHIP MATTERS . . . Saint Mary’s is not supported by an endowment but by the monetary gifts of those who worship here. The annual budget is drawn up based on the money that the Board of Trustees believes will be pledged and offered each year. If we do not meet our pledge goal, our budget will need to be radically altered after the first quarter of 2009, and things will certainly change at Saint Mary’s. Saint Mary’s continues to need the financial support of everyone who worships here. Our pledge campaign for 2009 has begun very well! So far this year, 83.7% of our goal of $518,970 has been reached; 23 households have pledged for the first time or have pledged again after being away. Thanks to all for your generosity. Saint Mary’s needs the help of all her members and friends to push us over the final hump before the first quarter of 2009 ends. If you haven’t pledged yet, please consider making a pledge this year: your support is essential to this church continuing its outreach, program, mission, and worship. Please speak to one of the priests today to make your pledge.
COME AND SING WITH US! . . . Saint Mary’s Singers is looking for members. We are a group of parishioners and non-parishioners who now sing twice a month at the Church of Saint Mary the Virgin, Times Square. The church has one of the finest acoustics in the city, as well as one of the city’s greatest organs. Why don’t YOU consider taking a break from work on Sunday afternoons to come sing and socialize with a group of Saint Mary’s neighbors, friends, and parishioners? (Trips to the local pubs and restaurants of Hell’s Kitchen immediately follow the rehearsals and performances!) If you are able to match pitch and have a desire to sing, especially some of the great Anglican choral repertoire, why not consider being part of our new choir? We promise that you will have fun! If you would like to join, or just come along for a rehearsal, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. James Kennerley
CONCERTS AT SAINT MARY’S . . . Saint Mary’s offers a wide variety of concerts each year. In addition to concerts offered by our music department, we also host a number of outside groups who offer concerts in the church. See below for upcoming concerts at Saint Mary’s . . . Every Sunday, 4:40 PM (October to June): Before Sunday Evensong & Benediction Saint Mary’s offers a weekly organ recital by a visiting musician. For more details, please see the current music schedule HERE . . Saturday, January 31, 2009, 8:00 PM: A Royal Christening and Musical Banquet, Piffaro, The Renaissance Band, Parthenia, A Consort of Viols, Vox Vocal Ensemble . . . Saturday, February 14, 2009, 8:00 PM: Songs of Love, Lust, and Lamentation, Vox Vocal Ensemble, George Steel, conductor . . . Saturday, April 2, 2009, 8:00 PM: Music for Double Choir, The Tallis Scholars, Peter Phillips, director.
CHILDREN AT SAINT MARY’S . . . Children are always welcome at Mass at Saint Mary’s. The Rector encourages families with children to sit at the front of the church – so the children can see easily and clearly. Childcare for younger children is available in the Saint Benedict’s Nursery & Playroom which is open and available every Sunday from 8:45 AM until 12:45 PM.
SUNDAY SCHOOL FOR CHILDREN . . . Sunday School for children meets on Sundays during the academic year at 10:00 AM, in the Morning Room (follow the blue signs in Saint Joseph’s Hall to the Morning Room). Sunday School is led by Deacon Jedediah Fox and Sister Deborah Francis, C.S.J.B.
THE ORDINARY FRIDAYS OF THE YEAR are observed by special acts of discipline and self-denial in commemoration of the crucifixion of the Lord.
The Calendar of the Week
Sunday The Second Sunday after Epiphany
Monday The Confession of Saint Peter the Apostle (transferred)
Tuesday Fabian, Bishop & Martyr of Rome, 250
Wednesday Agnes, Martyr at Rome, 304
Thursday Vincent, Deacon of Saragossa & Martyr, 304
Friday Weekday Abstinence
Saturday Of Our Lady
Eve of the Third Sunday after Epiphany
Sunday: 8:30 AM Sung Matins, 9:00 AM Said Mass, 10:00 AM Said Mass, 10:00 AM Sunday School & Adult Christian Education, 11:00 AM Solemn Mass, 4:40 PM Organ Recital, 5:00 PM Solemn Evensong & Benediction.
Childcare is available from 8:45 AM until 12:45 PM every Sunday.
Monday–Friday: 8:30 AM Morning Prayer, 12:00 PM Noonday Office, 12:10 PM Mass, 6:00 PM Evening Prayer, 6:20 PM Mass. The Wednesday 12:10 PM Mass is sung. Thursday Masses include anointing of the sick.
Saturday: 12:00 PM Noonday Office, 12:10 PM Mass, 5:00 PM Evening Prayer, 5:20 PM Sunday Vigil Mass. Confessions are heard Saturdays at 11:30 AM and 4:00 PM or by appointment.