The Messenger November 2014
“Blessed to Be a Blessing!” – Emmanuel Episcopal Church’s Blessing Tree, October 2014
It has been fun to watch our blessing tree fill with leaves during the month of October. On Sunday morning as we gather for the Eucharist, in the background the leaves on our tree are gently moving with the various air currents. It is a visible reminder of the Holy Spirit moving in and around and through our community, providing inspiration for how we are blessed and for how we bless others. Wonder how others at Emmanuel have been blessed? Read on…If you missed the stewardship dinner, you may wonder what a tree is doing in our entry-way. Christy’s Stewardship Presentation at the dinner has been transcribed and is soon be found on our website… it holds the answer to how our blessing tree found us.
We are indeed blessed to be a blessing!
– My blessing is the renewal of faith I received from our wonderful pastors (past and present) and the support I receive from my friends in Christ.
– Emmanuel is a blessing for me as the priests, people, love of God have always been a presence.
– I’m blessed by having begun my marriage here, and being supported through the years by beautiful worship, inspiration, and music.
– Good friends, wonderful music, inspiring new priest, ability to help our church and our parishioners. My parent’s ashes are in the columbarium and I can visit with them.
– I have been blessed in so many ways. Learning to rest my faith in God once again. Being renewed. Have been blessed with the ability to pray again. Have been blessed to receive blessings from the church so I can work abroad. Am unable to list all of my blessings. I am so thankful!
– When I walk into the church I am at peace. God is here to fill me with blessings.
– I’m blessed to have my church family.
– We’re blessed to be in Coos Bay and being part of this church since 1949.
– I have been blessed with good health and my church family.
– I am thankful that my son and daughter-in-law have given me a place to live and feel safe.
– Family and friends, authors of wise and honest books.
– Being able to care for others. My house. My family.
– I am thankful for my husband, Larry, my family and puppy. God has blessed me and healed me back to good health.
– I am blessed by all the singers and instrumentalists at Emmanuel and those who join whenever possible. Christy is a great blessing.
– I am thankful for Virginia, a long life and my family. We are blessed by God!
– My church family has seen me through many sad, difficult times. I have been a member of Emmanuel Parish for 60 years. We
are blessed to have Christy. I love her.
– A lifetime of stability provided by friends and family in this church. Through good times and through tough times it has been the one “constant.”
– For opportunities of ministry, for support in times of trial, for fellowship and for fresh looks at Scripture.
– For food and shelter, for my family, for good neighbors, for 43 blessed years with Bob, for helping hands in times of need, for
Jackie and Milani, for Christy’s ministry, for good medical care.
– For birthdays.
– For SAM!
– Thank you for blessings to the Lark family and friends.
– Having a blessed 54 years with Gene as my husband. Having a blessed parish of Emmanuel and for a truly loving and
supportive family. Having my immediate family as true blessings.
– Medical people. Family. My church. Friends.
– Working on the newsletter gave me the opportunity to know Sally Jaeggli: a true blessing to me!
– For all the good friends and the renewal of my faith in our church services.
– I am blessed with family and friends, with a job and security and a church family. Who could ask for more?
– Thank you for friendship, and a caring community!
– I’ve been blessed by the prayers of many and the encounter with the Holy Spirit.
– Charles E. Hutchins, Dorin Hutchins, Connie Hutchins, Ryan Hutchins.
– How can I not feel blessed by all the care I’ve been given through my difficult times! Thank you!!
– I am thankful for so many things this past year! Thank you!
– A servant blessed.
– Blessed by all the smiling faces every week!
– I feel so blessed to be healthy.
– Blessed to be able to knit comfort shawls for those who need them.
– My wonderful husband.
– Grace and acceptance.
– Our parents. Our children. Our family.
– Love the sense of community this congregation has.
– Thanks for our pastor Christy and for the enthusiasm and energy she has.
– Cancer free for Wayne. Prayers from congregation.
– Grateful for Christy.
– Good friends.
– 1 more year on the Vestry. Town hall meeting.
– I’m blessed to have seen Gods back.
– Peace. Church home. Friends. Love. Growing and deepening of faith. Music to feed my soul.
– We are very thankful for youth club and what it brings our family.
– I am blessed by the support here at Emmanuel.
– Thankful for 1st stewardship. Thankful for feast and fellowship. Thankful to become a blessing offerer.
– Health. Family. Friends.
– New discoveries.
– Helping in Food Cupboard. Having a good MD for 10 years. Being able to help at the rummage sale. My best friend at Emmanuel. Good friends. Having a joyous rector.
– I am blessed by all the musicians in our parish and all they do for us. Christy is also a great blessing!
– Having good medical coverage.
– Helping in Food Cupboard. Having a good MD for 10 years. Being able to help at the rummage sale. My best friend at Emmanuel. Good friends. Having a joyous rector.
– Receiving an injury to uncover a larger problem.
– Pelicans after the storm; a beautiful blessing.
– At Emmanuel, I was face to face with Jesus.
– Blessed with a visit from my grandson and his wife.
Blessings to you and yours!
Christy on Vacation Thanksgiving Week
￼￼￼￼￼￼Christy will be on vacation the week of November 24th. Her son Joshua has the week off and she plans to spend it with her family. The church office will be open Monday and Tuesday, November 24th and 25th from 9:00 to 12:00. Additional information about who to contact in case of pastoral emergencies will be available on the church answering machine and in the Sunday bulletin the week before.
Emmanuel will be continuing our tradition of providing Christmas baskets to families in the community and we would like to involve the entire congregation in this ministry.
We expect to provide baskets for 30-35 families and approximately 120 school age children. Requests for baskets are obtained through the local schools and a Christmas list of all the children and their Christmas wishes compiled before Thanksgiving. Then we start shopping to fill their requests. You can help purchase clothing and toys, or if you prefer to play Santa to an individual child that works too.
Starting November 20th at 6:30 PM we will meet every Thursday until wrapping day~ Sunday December 14.
Often there are children who request a bike for Christmas. Let Susan know early if you have one to donate and she will see if there is a special need we can fill.
Contact Susan Foreman: 541-404-3886, firstname.lastname@example.org
Coos Food Cupboard
Thank you everyone for your support. Please make all checks out to Coos Food Cupboard; our new name.
Looking for another way to donate?? We are in need of canned fruit, any type. Thank you in advance for your support.
It’s Book Fair time again! Reading is vital to every child’s success. Literacy starts early – with seeing and handling books, being read to by others, seeing others take time to read, etc. You can help a child to gain important skills.
Emmanuel’s Book Fair will be open the following times:
– Sunday, 11/2: immediately following both services;
– Monday 11/3 : 8:30am – 9:15am & 11:30am to 12:30pm;
– Wednesday 11/5 : 8:30am – 9:15am & 11:30am to 12:30pm;
– Friday, 11/7/14: 9am to 2pm during Emmanuel’s Bazaar.
– Sunday, 11/9/14: immediately following both services; last Chance!
This is a great opportunity to buy books for children, grandchildren, nieces, nephews, etc. Emmanuel’s Preschool will also have a “wish list” for anyone who wants to purchase books for them.
If you wish, you can also do online shopping from 10/29 through 11/18/14 for these great books. Online shopping is only available during the above listed dates.
In Other News…
“Holiday Blessings” Bazaar
Friday, Nov 7th – 9:00 AM to 2:00 PM Turkey Lunch- 11:30 AM to 1:00 PM
Nancylee Stewart’s husband will donate his (very good) knife/scissor sharpening skills. He will be here
Sunday, November 9th – following the 10:00 AM service
He will have his tools and sharpen the knives, scissors – anything with a blade!!! Free Will donations accepted and will be used for our Outreach Programs.
Advent Quiet Day Offered On December 6th, 9:00-4:00
Save the date and plan to attend the Advent Quiet Day in the Undercroft on Saturday, December 6th from 9:00-4:00. The day is intended to help us set aside time to be still and prepare our hearts for the coming of Jesus during a season that many times is out of control. Christy will lead the day which will be made up of four meditations with reflection questions that will help us walk through the four Sundays of Advent. It is a quiet retreat so it is an opportunity to be quiet and reflective within community which can be a very powerful experience. Lunch will be provided and the day will end with the Eucharist. Cost is $10/person to help cover the cost of snacks and lunch, although scholarships are always available. Talk to Christy if needed. Watch for registration forms, mid-November, but be sure and save the date! A wonderful way to prepare spiritually for the coming of Jesus on Christmas Day!
Community Thanksgiving Dinner-November 27th between 12:00 noon and 3:00PM First United Methodist Church
This year the Community Thanksgiving Dinner will be held at the United Methodist Church, 123 Ocean Blvd, Coos Bay. The dinner is free and everyone in the community is invited to a meal of thanksgiving and fellowship! To make this a reality our presence and participation is needed to help provide food items, as well as for volunteers to help with food preparation, set-up, meal service, meal delivery and all aspects of clean-up. A sign-up sheet is available in the back of the church and downstairs in the undercroft. In addition, we have specifically been asked to provide 2 large turkeys (15- 25lbs) and 6 commercially prepared pies (ready to serve.) Julianna has additional directions for where and when to drop off these items in the church office. Please sign-up soon so they know who they can count on. Donations of money are also appreciated and used to purchase the food for the dinner. Make sure to mark your check for the Community Thanksgiving Dinner. Thanks for helping others to have a blessed Thanksgiving!
Prayer given by Troy Cribbins in honor of Stewardship
Disturb Us Lord
Disturb us, Lord, when we are too well pleased with ourselves, when our dreams have come true because we have dreamed too little, when we arrived safely because we sailed too close to the shore.
Disturb us, Lord, when with the abundance of things we possess, we have lost our thirst for the justice and the waters of life.
Stir us, Lord, to dare more boldly, to venture on wider seas, where storms will show your mastery; where losing sight of land, we shall find the stars.
We ask You to push us into the future in strength, courage, hope, and love. Amen Adapted from a prayer by Sir Francis Drake -1577
FOR THE HEALTH OF IT By Kerry Oxford, Parish Nurse
“Be still and know that I am God. Be still and know that I am with you.” From Psalm 46:10
Being in the Moment with God
We all know how difficult it is to “be in the moment.” Our daily assault of diversions, stressors, worries, and anxieties make this concept so difficult to grasp. Stress takes a heavy toll on our physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual health. When we step away from the here and now, when we are constantly thinking about the past and worrying about the future we are missing all of the gifts and opportunities that God has for us right now, today! Remember, “Yesterday is history. Tomorrow is a mystery. Today is a gift.” E Roosevelt.
How do we stay in the moment with God? How do we limit unhealthy habits like worrying? Slow Down. Pay attention to what is happening right now, this moment. Appeal to all of your senses, sight, sound, touch, smell, and taste. How do you feel? Are you really aware of what is going on around you right now? Are you aware of being in the moment with God?
When you are in the Happy Moments, praise God. When you are in the Difficult Moments, seek God. When you are in the Quiet Moments, trust God. In Every Moment, thank God!
As change happens around us and as we consider what might happen next we have the power to either spend our time thinking about all of the “what ifs” or we can choose to live in this moment with God, making choices today that empower ourselves as we move forward.
I do not claim to have obtained optimum emotional well-being. Actually, I think that may be a lifetime goal. For me, it’s an ongoing process that requires awareness, knowledge, and practice. I do know what it feels like to “be in the moment with God”, and that motivates me to keep at the practice.
I’ll leave you with some wonderful sayings that I love.
Remember, it’s not important how many breaths you take in life…it’s the moments that take your breath away!
Worry does not empty Tomorrow of its troubles. It empties Today of its strength. The butterfly counts the moments not the months…and has time enough.
Kerry Oxford, RN Parish Nurse
FROM THE DESK OF ANNE ABDY
This past year I have been a more intentional about connecting with friends and family. I am not sure what is driving this but I have had a number of mini-family reunions. The first was in August last year when I arrived at Sewanee. My cousins, Marc and Ella, met my brother Mark, Dorothy Health-Lewis, and I to help unload the UHAUL. I had trucked some of my grandparent’s furniture cross-country and they met us to claim their pieces. It was a great get-together especially since my brother had last seen this set of cousins when they were toddlers.
At that time, the seed was planted to have a family reunion for the East Coast clan. As this idea germinated a mini-gathering was had in Orlando, FL where Marc and Ella met their Uncle John for the first time. My cousins, Scott, David, and Greg from Tampa were not able to join us. None of these cousins have met us. With that get- together, the date of Memorial Weekend 2015 was set. I am excited that all have committed to this date and it will take place outside of Miami at my Uncle’s home.
The other exciting news is that the faculty of the seminary approved my cross-cultural grant request to complete a mission experience in Southern Africa. The next step is to submit the paperwork to the Domestic and Foreign Mission Society of ECUSA who will provide part of the funding. The cross-cultural experience will be at the Missions for Seafearers in my childhood hometown. It is surreal to think that after not being back in thirty years, I will spend three weeks in Walvis-Bay, Namibia. God is certainly putting this trip together. It will be an experience of great healing, joy as I reunite with cousins and friends, and I know, transformative.
I wish you all a blessed Thanksgiving.
Caring for our Home Bound Members by Providing them with the Eucharist
Reaching out ~ Providing Hospitality ~ Inclusion
Maybe this is a Ministry for You!
Many of our members are home bound due to health issues, and/or aging that makes it more difficult to leave their home. Yet they continue to be important members of our church community! How do we continue to care for them and nurture those relationships? This is a great example of a question we need to continually keep in front of us as a community so we are constantly doing everything we can to include these foundational members in our hearts, in our prayers, in our activities when possible and in our worshipping community. It is part of the pastoral care that we provide as a community of faith. It’s part of nurturing relationships, offering hospitality and being inclusive, all of which are key goals for us during the coming year.
Over the last couple of months I have been working hard to meet our home bound members… to hear their stories and to share my story with them. Many times this has included taking them communion. It is important for me to get to know them and sometimes it’s harder because they aren’t able to get out! I have just about made it through the whole list so if you know of someone who still hasn’t met me, please let me know!
My overall hope for pastoral care to our home bound members, is that we will be able to have a regular schedule where our Eucharistic Visitors will take communion to them once a month. This means that they would be guaranteed of being given a call at least once a month and offered to have communion brought to them. The Eucharistic visitors will actually be sent forth from the service right before the post communion prayer and the whole congregation will know who they are visiting. In that way we are extending the sense of community that we have when we gather around the table of our Lord to those who are unable to be there. We hold them in our prayers and they not only receive the eucharist, but a summary of the sermon and a sense of the community that morning. Then at Christmas time and at Easter time my intent is to bring them communion myself so they are assured of seeing me at least two times a year.
Some of you may read this and think, “Wow, only once a month?!” But the reality is that it takes a team of committed, trained folks who feel called to this ministry to make it work. We currently have an awesome team, but their numbers are dwindling and some of them are dealing with their own health issues or health issues of loved ones, which means they aren’t as available. I wonder, do you have the gifts for this ministry? Do you enjoy offering others the gift of hospitality of presence? Are you a good listener? Do you have a reverence for communion? How about a desire to reach out to our home bound members to help them feel included in our community? If you answer yes to any of those questions then maybe the Holy Spirit might be nudging you to check out this ministry. A great way to “try it on” so to speak is to go along with someone when they take communion out. We will be having a training in the near future so talk to one of our current Eucharistic visitors…Pat Cross, Arlene Peil, or Fran Whittaker to learn more about it or talk to me if you are interested.