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St. James' Glastonbury
Episcopal Church

Update as of Wednesday, December 14, 2022

 Dear Sisters and Brothers in Christ,

 

Today is a tough day for those of us who were so close to the Sandy Hook shooting in 2012.  Please continue to pray for the little souls and staff lost ten years ago today and pray for peace in this world. 

We are so fortunate to have found our new parish administrator, Dawn Hardwick, who stepped into Jodi’s shoes so effortlessly in April.  Today is Dawn’s birthday. Her skills and abilities have been a gift to St. James’ during our “transition” this year.  Please let her know how much she is appreciated when you have a chance. 

Although Christmas is nearly here and holiday celebrations have started, the Church’s work continues.  The Finance Committee met Tuesday evening to continue its work on the 2023 budget, the Vestry meets tonight, the Thursday Book Group meets tomorrow, and Carol’s Closet is open on Saturday morning. Many thanks to all those who volunteer for this work.  Please remember that the Church office is closed for the week between Christmas and New Year’s. 

 Our Advent preparation continues in anticipation of Christmas.  The choir keeps rehearsing, the Altar Guild and Flower Guild are extra busy, and the Pageant has its ress rehearsal on Saturday up at the South Glastonbury barn, with the animals!  Sunday is our fourth Sunday in Advent, Joan and Ed Crow will light the fourth Advent candle, John O’Donnell is our lay preacher, and the Christmas Pageant, the story of Christ’s birth, will be performed at 3:00 on Sunday afternoon up (on top of a hill) at Beacon Woods Stables. The numerous, little angels and sheep usually steal the show from even the animals, but also of note are the older kids who have moved up the ranks to speaking parts. It was a big deal in our house when our 7 year old James moved up to being the “head shepherd” so many years ago.  Caroling and hot cocoa are provided at St. Mark’s on Griswold St. after the pageant.  

We all look forward to the special worship on Christmas Eve at 5:00 and 9:00.  May your Christmas preparations continue with thoughtful prayer. 

Love,

Debbie O’Donnell, Senior Warden

 In this week’s text from the Gospel of Matthew, three different names are ascribed to Jesus:  “Jesus”, which means “he saves,”  “the Messiah,” which means, “the chosen one,” and  “Emmanuel,” which means “God with us.”  And before that, Matthew’s Gospel begins with the genealogy of Jesus, listing 42 generations, from Abraham to Jesus. Pastor and author Christine Chakoian observes, “Ironically, of course (at least in Matthew), Jesus isn’t really heir to that elite and sacred line-up, since they are through Joseph’s heritage—not Mary’s. Even worse, though Jesus bears the heavenly identity as child ofthe Holy Spirit and fulfillment of God’s promise through the prophet, he is also tagged as the illegitimate offspring of a woman whobrought shame to her husband and father.”  She goes on to wonder, “But maybe the contrast is intentional—and even a foretelling of what is to come: Jesus is King of Kings—but he will also be crucified by Herod, the king of the Jews. Jesus is teacher and Lord—but he will also be denounced by the scribes and Pharisees. Jesus is the Savior—but he will also be taunted that he cannot save himself. “Which tells us that it’s not Jesus’ identity that is unclear—it is our ability to recognize him. Thank God that Joseph did.”

 Indeed! The very circumstances of Jesus’ coming into the world tell us a lot. As we approach this fourth and last Sunday of Advent, we are again invited to reflect on who – and what -- it is that we are looking for. He is here with us already – would you recognize him if you met Him on the street?

Have a blessed week!  Your brother in Christ, Don+ 

Music Notes

Sunday’s Gospel reading is the story of the Annunciation. The offertory anthem is a Basque carol set to words as translated from the Basque language by The Rev. Sabine Baring-Gould (1834-1924), beginning with The angel Gabriel from heaven came. Gould spent a summer in Basque and was a collector of folk songs. During communion the women sing The Song of Mary, a setting of the canticle Magnificat  (Luke 1:46-55) by Larry King (1932-1990). King was music director at Trinity Church, Wall Street, for many years, known for his innovative music which sometimes included electronic accompaniment.

 Upcoming:  

Christmas Memorial Flowers –memorial envelopes are in the Atrium, or call the Church office with names of loved ones to be remembered.  Please do so by December 18, 2022. 

Reminder: The Annual Christmas Pageant is taking place this Sunday at 3:00 PM!  Beacon Woods Stables161 Beacon Woods Lane, South Glastonbury.  This year, we will be collecting items for Carol’s Closet.  Please consider donating toiletries to support this great cause.We hope to see many of you there for what promises to be a festive event! For more information please contact Erin Perrelli - eperrelli519@gmail.com 

American Red Cross Blood Drive at St. James’:Friday December 30th is the next Red Cross Blood Drive at St. James’ and will be held from 1pm – 6pm in the Parish Hall. You can pre-register at REDCROSS.org to give blood or sign up in the Atrium to help with the drive.  We are always thankful for people to help prepare the sandwiches and snacks ahead of time and to help out at the event.  The need for blood is constant and blood can only be donated;  to date there is no manufactured substitute!  Thank you for supporting the American Red Cross blood program! 

Ongoing: 

Adult Bible Study – For tonight’s session; the study group will be discussing The Revelation to John, Chapters 3, 4 and 5. We begin the journey that leads us to the promise of Rev. 2:7.

The Zoom link is below.  

Carol’s Closet – Is open this Saturday and is in need of full-size tooth paste.  Please place them in the Carol’s Closet donation bin near the door of the Atrium. 

Church Directory – You can now access the Parish Directory on the St. James’ website.  It is password protected.  If you are having difficulty signing in, please call the Church Office. 

Social Media Update -

Are you active on Facebook or Instagram?...St James' IS.  Please be sure to Like or Follow St James' pages.  And, please share posts.  This will help us spread the word about all that our community is doing to spread God's love.  Just search St James' Glastonbury to find the pages.  Or for Facebook look for StJamesGlastonbury or Instagram look for stjamesepiscopalchurchgl.   

No Freeze in Willimantic - is in desperate need of toilet paper, paper towels, bath towels, and inexpensive ear buds. Donations can be dropped off between 1 and 4pm any day. Volunteers are also needed - it's a very rewarding service opportunity. For more information or an alternative drop off time, email windham.nofreeze@gmail.com . And thank you! 

Lost and Found – A small piece of jewelry was recently found.  Please contact the Church office. 

Readings:

LINKS

 

Sunday Live stream on YouTube – Sundays at 10:00 am

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCa_CMV_a7oVHxZA1h750d8Q

 

Adult Bible Study 

Time: Wednesdays at 7:00 p.m.

https://us02web.zoom.us/j/84395139867?pwd=MCs3QTFqanFTeCtVVzhRNjRoUlpEQT09

 

 

Thursday Book Group

 

Time: Alternate Thursdays at 10:00 a.m.

 

https://us02web.zoom.us/j/85329105067?pwd=Si9XRkYrYUx5MXhsYmZvVlBGc3FSUT09