At the last meeting of the Board of Trustees I observed that the parish was really well organized for running a $200,000.00 a year deficit in the operating budget. There is a deep emotional commitment to the common life at Saint Mary's among us who are here now. But those of us who are here, however, are not paying our way and we are spending the capital that sustains this historic plant at an alarming rate.
I will never forget a woman who told me with a straight face and a concerned look that her husband, who was not very old had stopped breathing a few days before. She wasn't sure she should do anything, so she didn't. Fortunately, he started breathing again on his own, he called 911 on his own, and he lived for many more years. I was speechless as she recounted this in her husband's presence.
There is a certain reflexive, almost reptilian response to situations in life that is built into all of us. Some people will look at the situation at Saint Mary's and do nothing. Some will flee. I hope that most of you will share my conviction that you and I have been called to Saint Mary's at this time precisely because we have the gifts needed to witness to Christ's love in this place and to serve others in his name.
For the generation that built this building it meant sacrifice. For the generation that faced the Great Depression it meant sacrifice. For the generation that faced the collapse of the neighborhood it meant sacrifice. For us today it will mean sacrifice.
Some people will see the situation at Saint Mary's and be thankful for the opportunity to be able to help in this work. Some will see it and do more than they should. Some will see it and have their lives changed because they will realize how much has been done for them and will want to orient their lives in new ways to doing for others. There are many reasons to respond to Christ's call to believe and to serve. Every person who responds will do so in his or her own way and the rest of us will never be able to share completely in the particular joy each of us feels when we make a difference for another.
In the new year I will be leading discussions with the Trustees and others about how to organize our parish to do more than sustain a life funded by a $200,000.00 expenditure of capital. Do I need to say that I don't think a hundred new members are going to show up suddenly and fund our parish for us? I think you and I are called to reach out to newcomers and perhaps we should be spending some money precisely on that kind of ministry, but if our motive in doing so is for them to save us, I don't think we will succeed. However, if our motive is to serve Christ I believe our efforts may well be richly blessed.
Let me conclude these thoughts by touching on one other reality: Saint Mary's will change if it survives. New people change a parish. New staff change a parish. New directions change a parish. The catholic faith has always been a living faith. What is eternal is the Word and God's truth. Nothing will keep Saint Mary's from moving forward more quickly than an attitude of "But we've always done it this way." Now is the time for you and me to put the future in God's hands in a new way, to trust that new approaches and new commitments for Christ will be blessed.
PRAYER LIST . . . Olga, Helen, Mary, Lucille, Frances, Eleanor, Carl, Harold, Frank, Cindy, Eleanor, Jane, Allen, John, Kersten, Nolan and Barbara and for the repose of the souls of Charlotte and Hilda . . . GRANT THEM PEACE . . . October 21: 2000 Hilda Berkowitz; October 31: 1964 Earl Brandt Bird; 1990 David Hessing; November 1: 1997 Mark Hamilton; November 2: 1957 Elsinore Janmott; 1958 C. Y. Wong; 1960 Mabel Hoover; 1970 John Schwartz; 1973 Howard Smith; Doris White; 1976 Winona Peterson; 1982 Robert Kennedy; 1983 Marie Andokian; 1987 Clasine Van De Geer.
IN THIS TRANSITORY LIFE . . . Charlotte Grant, a member of Saint Mary's, died on Tuesday, October 24. Her requiem is to be celebrated at Saint Mary's on Friday, October 27. She joined the parish by confirmation on April 5, 1970. May she rest in peace.
LITURGICAL NOTES . . . The Sunday Proper: Isaiah 59:1-4, 9-19, Psalm 13, Hebrews 5:2-6:1, 9-12, Mark 10:46-52 . . . 9:00 AM Celebrant: Father Breidenthal, Preacher: Jennifer Reddall, 10:00 AM Celebrant & Preacher: Father Shin, 11:00 AM Celebrant: Father Shin, Preacher: Father Breidenthal, 5:00 PM Celebrant & Preacher: Father Shin . . . Confessions will be heard on October 28 by Father Gerth . . . Confessions will be heard on November 4 by Father Garrison.
AROUND THE PARISH . . . Please remember to change your clock this weekend as daylight savings time ends on Sunday morning at 2:00 AM . . . Altar Flowers are needed for Sunday, November 5, Sunday, November 19, and for Sunday, November 26 . . . Readers of the Episcopal New Yorker will have seen a profile on our own Kyoko Kageyama. Kyoko is the first lay missioner of the Metropolitan Japanese Ministry in the Diocese of New York. With her guidance, the MJM coordinates worship using the Prayer Book of the Japanese Anglican Church, offers opportunities to improve English skills, and provides programs including Mother and Child groups, events and activities which embody a Christian presence for Japanese Christians and non-Christians alike. We at Saint Mary's continue to be blessed by Kyoko's faith and presence among us . . . Many readers of AVE will notice that the November - December 2000 issue was printed on a lighter stock paper. This was an error in the printer's shop and we are promised that it won't happen again . . . Stewardship brochures have been mailed. If your household did not receive a copy or you need an additional copy, please call the church office. Those members in good standing who do not respond to this mailing can except a second mailing very soon! The second mailing is scheduled for Monday, November 6 . . . Attendance last Sunday: 164.
VESTMENT WORKSHOP NEWS . . . The Vestment Restoration Workshop will take place at church this Saturday, beginning at 10:00 AM. Due to illness, Gina Bianco of the Metropolitan Museum of Art has been rescheduled. Help is still needed this Saturday in assessing our vestments and learning from one another how best to preserve and care for them.
Worship at Saint Mary’s
The Holy Eucharist
On Sundays Mass is said at 9:00 AM 5:00 PM. A Sung Mass is offered at 10:00 AM. A Solemn Mass is offered at 11:00 AM. Monday through Friday Mass is said at 12:15 PM and 6:20 PM. On Saturdays Mass is said at 12:15 PM.
The Daily Office
On ordinary Sundays Morning Prayer is said at 8:30 AM and Evening Prayer at 4:45 PM. Monday through Friday Morning Prayer is offered at 8:30 AM, the Noonday Office at 12:00 PM and Evening Prayer at 6:00 PM. On Saturdays the Noonday Office is offered at 12:00 PM and Evening Prayer at 5:00 PM.
The Reconciliation of Penitents
Confessions are heard on Saturdays between 11:30 and 12:00 and between 4:00 and 5:00. Appointments
can also be made with members of the parish clergy for the Reconciliation of Penitents at other times.
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 for the Twentieth Week after Pentecost
Tuesday Weekday (12:15 PM)
Eve of All Saints' Day (6:00 PM)
Wednesday All Saints' Day
Thursday All Souls' Day
Friday Weekday Abstinence
Saturday Monthly Requiem
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, The Reverend J. Barrington Bates, assisting priests, The Reverend Canon Edgar F. Wells, rector emeritus.