From Father Shin: Dong Kingman, 1911-2000
The priestly vocation has taken me through unexpected encounters and experiences. Often such occasions involve invitations into significant moments in people’s lives – occasions which call for the rites of passage such as birth, baptism, marriage and death. I always find it a privilege and an honor to be invited into people’s private lives on those occasions, for these moments call for a meaning larger than our private lives, a sense of connection with God. Recently I was called to such an occasion and it was indeed an unexpected privilege.
There was a phone call last week concerning the death of a member of St. Mary’s. If you had read the New York Times obituary section on Tuesday, May 16, you would have come across an article on an artist named, Dong Kingman. The article briefly describes his illustrious achievements as a painter. What the article does not mention is his connection with St. Mary’s, which goes back to 1950’s. Some old timers of the parish may well remember him and his second wife, Helena. Helena Kuo Kingman was confirmed at St. Mary’s in 1956. Dong was confirmed in 1959 at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine and his name was soon entered into St. Mary’s parish registry. The Kingmans were active members during Father Garfield’s tenure. The rectory still has two small watercolors that were his gift to the parish. Several years ago he suffered a stroke, which restricted his mobility though it did not deter him from continuing his painting. On ‘Tuesday, May 16 at 10 AM a prayer service was held for him at the Frank E. Campbell Funeral Chapel before the cremation. A memorial service for Dong will be held some time in June, when his family members from Asia and the West Coast can all get together in New York.
Certainly privilege was mine since the deceased happened to be an accomplished and famous artist, whom I had never met nor heard his name mentioned around the parish. But there is more to it than that. For one reason or another, Mr. Kingman’s connection with Saint Mary’s had become distanced. He had not transferred out of Saint Mary’s nor had he changed his will not to have his ashes interred at Saint Mary’s. It makes me wonder about relationships within the parish community and how important it is that we try to keep track of each other.
In New York City, where one’s privacy is an honored commodity, caring for one another and an awareness of someone’s absence should be an equally priceless commodity in the life of a Christian community. Dong once added a vibrant color to this parish as his paintings did to American art. This parish obviously was once an important part of his life. The privilege was indeed mine to be an instrument of reconnecting Dong Kingman with Saint Mary’s. And the privilege is ours to have Dong Kingman numbered as a member of this parish community.
Rest eternal grant unto him, O Lord!
PRAYER LIST . . . Your prayers are asked for Jack who is hospitalized, James, Carol, Olga, Helen, Margaret, Shirley, Hannah, Dawn, Bryn, Mary, Lucille, Frances, Ronald, André, Edgar, Helen, Beatrice, Timothy, Marilyn, Eleanor and Charles Arthur and for the repose of the souls of Dong and Marilyn . . . GRANT THEM PEACE . . . May 23: 1959 Edith May Place Bennett.
LITURGICAL NOTES . . . The Sunday Proper: Acts 8:26-40, Psalm 66:1-8, 1 John 3:14-24, John 14:15-21 . . . 9:00 AM Celebrant: Father Shin, Preacher: Richard Lawson; 10:00 AM Celebrant & Preacher: Father Breidenthal, 11:00 AM Celebrant & Preacher: Father Gerth, 5:00 PM Celebrant & Preacher: Father Gerth . . Confessions will be heard on May 20 by Canon Garrison.
AROUND THE PARISH . . . The Catechesis of the Good Shepherd training course meets on Saturday, May 20, from 9:00 PM to 3:00 PM . . . Our Wednesday evening series continues in Saint Benedict's Study at 7:00 PM. The topic this week is "Jesus the Son of Man" to be presented by Richard Lawson . . . Congratulations are in order for Mary Haddad, who will graduate from General Theological Seminary on Wednesday, May 17. Mary will be ordained to the transitional diaconate on June 10 in the Diocese of Los Angeles, but will be returning to New York to continue her graduate studies at General Seminary . . . Flowers are needed for Sunday, May 28, and for the second and third Sundays in June. You may give flowers by calling the parish office or by signing the sheet in Saint Joseph’s Hall . . . Attendance last Sunday: 168.
SUMMARY OF APRIL 10, 2000, BOARD MEETING . . . At its April meeting, the Board of Trustees: 1. Approved the Parochial Report, which is submitted to the Diocese; 2. Voted to amend the By-Laws to hold Board meetings on the third, rather than the second, Monday of each month, except when that day is a holiday, in which case the meeting will be held on the next day (a Tuesday); [However, due to scheduling conflicts, the May 2000 meeting of the Board of Trustees will he held on Tuesday May 16, 2000.] 3. Heard from the Rector on the progress of the music search; 4. Discussed advertising plans for Holy Week services; 5. Heard that signed pledges for 2000 now amount to $156,417; 6. Heard that the Treasurer, Mrs. Barbara Klett, will be attending a meeting of the shareholders of the Diocesan Investment Trust (DIC) on Monday April 17, 2000. The Board recently voted to move a substantial portion of Saint Mary’s investments to the DIC; 7. Learned that the choir of Christ Church, Greenwich, Connecticut, will sing at Solemn Mass at St. Mary’s on May 7, 2000, the first Sunday in May. The choir sang at St. Mary’s one Sunday last year.
SUMMARY OF MAY 16, 2000, BOARD MEETING . . . At its meeting on May 16, 2000, the Board of Trustees: 1. Voted to donate the plate offering from Maundy Thursday, totaling $427, to the Momentum AIDS Project, an AIDS service organization; 2. Learned that the computer network project for the parish is nearing completion, with anticipation that the DSL line will be installed shortly; 3. Learned that, because of generous donations for Easter flowers, and because Mr. Howard Christian was able to obtain most of the flowers at a discount, the flower fund deficit, which had been over $17,000, has been reduced to $12,596; 4. Heard of interim plans for music. The Music Search Committee has recently met to formulate a job description for the position of Music Director, and the work of this committee is ongoing; 5. Heard of information from the Investment Committee on the performance of our investments, a part of which are with the Diocesan Investment Trust. The Committee heard a presentation on bonds from committee member Mr. Terry O’Dwyer; 6. Learned that the Rector Emeritus, Father Wells, will celebrate the 40th anniversary of his ordination on August 9, 2000.
HOLD THIS DATE . . . There will be a “Walking tour of the historical Episcopal Churches in Manhattan” on Saturday, June 17th, time and itinerary to be announced. Manhattan was an important place in the history of the Episcopal Church in the United States. The tour will explore some of many historical Episcopal churches, and their architectural styles and theological influences.
JACK REPORT . . . So many of you have asked about the progress of my three year-old cousin Jack Matthews who has neuroblastoma. Thank you for your concern and for your prayers. As we go to press, Jack is scheduled to be transferred back to Memorial Sloan - Kettering Cancer Center from the pediatric intensive care unit at the New York Hospital Cornell Medical Center. (There is no pediatric intensive care unit at Memorial Sloan – Kettering; the children are taken by ambulance to Cornell, which is across the street.) Jack continues to do well at every stage of this very, very difficult treatment. Jack was in Saint Mary’s last winter before the operation to remove the tumor. He sat me down on the altar steps and was quite at home. I have every expectation that at some point in time many of you will get to meet this boy and his parents. Again, I thank you for your concern and your prayers. S.G.
This week at Saint Mary’s
10:00 AM The Rector's Class in Saint Benedict's Study
7:00 PM Jesus of History and Faith in Saint Benedict’s Study
The Midland High School Meistersingsers, from Midland, Michigan, will be singing at the Solemn Mass.
The Calendar for the Fifth Week of Easter
Monday Easter Weekday
Tuesday Easter Weekday
Wednesday Jackson Kemper, Bishop
Thursday The Venerable Bede
Friday Augustine of Canterbury, Archbishop
Saturday Easter Weekday
The Parish Clergy
The Reverend Stephen Gerth, rector, The Reverend Allen Shin, curate, The Reverend Thomas Breidenthal, assistant, The Reverend Arthur Wolsoncroft, The Reverend Canon Maurice Garrison, The Reverend Amilcar Figueroa, assisting priests, The Reverend Canon Edgar F. Wells, rector emeritus.