One Bread, One Body June 17

OneBread OneBody

News from St. Nicholas with the Holy Innocents



The Prophet Elijah

That is happiness to be dissolved into something complete and great. — Willa Cather

Elk Grove Parade is this Saturday, June 16.

Pretend it’s Halloween. Dress up. Celebrate our church. The annual Elk Grove Village Parade is this Saturday, June 16. The theme is “Saturday Night at the Movies,” and we invite you – young AND old – to come dressed as one of your favorite movie characters. (And if you are boring, like me, or don’t have the time, come as you are – just come!)

Bill Barlow has graciously agreed to reprise his role as St. Nicholas, we’ve got great signage, and we’ll have more Frisbees to give away. Let’s have some fun that night and show our neighbors our spirit! If you can help tape some coupons inside the Frisbees – we are always marketing! – meet at church at 4. If you’d like to go over to the parade as a group, meet at church by 5. If you just want to be in the parade, it kicks off from Lively and Touhy at 6. We are group number 66, e.g., there are 65 before us.

Look for Bill dressed as St. Nicholas. Also, I did not put the full name of the church on the Frisbees since our sign outside does not have it and since we are going to change our name in a few months anyway. I figured, why confuse the Elk Grovers any more?

All hands on deck for our July rummage sale.

On July 20 and 21, we will hold our second annual Rummage Sale fundraiser. We intend to make this year’s sale a huge success. However, this is only possible if we all become involved.

Our goal is to have every member take ownership and lend a hand (or two) to some aspect of the sale. Some of us will need to help with advertising; some of us will need to collect plastic bags and hangers to use at the sale; some of us will need to pick up items from those unable to deliver them; some of us will need to help sort and price items; some of us will need to set up tables and arrange items the day of the sale; some of us will need to be present during the sale not only to help sell, but equally as important to get the word out about our mission and shared ministry; some of us will need to take down tables and prepare leftover items for pick-up by another charity.

Please be thinking about what your contribution will be. Remember, this is yet another opportunity for us to move even more deeply into communion with each other. Thank you in advance! (by Douglas van Houten, for the Rummage Sale group)

I thought church started at 10.

Not exactly… We are pretending it begins at 9:55 so we can be ready at 10 to practice music. This is one of the many wonderful things about having Mary as our music director. Thanks for trying.

Our garden’s growing.

Thanks to Bill Barlow for getting it started. And when he asks for help, let’s answer the call. Hungry people receive good food because of this ministry.

Bishop’s Committee report.

At its June 13 meeting, the bishop’s committee discussed a number of topics, including preparing for the parade – e-scrip at Dominick’s, and the building status.

It agreed by consensus that we would hold three Christmas Eve liturgies this year – at 4, 8, and 11 p.m. This was not done to reproduce the times of the two former parishes. Instead, we believe there will be a lot of excitement and buzz in our community at that time. The building will be “in the ground,” and we felt this offers an opportunity, especially with good publicity, to bring a lot more people into our church –at least for the holiday, but we hope for even longer.

We also were excited that with Mary’s arrival we will be able to do more than in the past, and so the 4 will be a Family Mass, the 11 a Traditional Midnight Mass with smells and bells and all that high church stuff. But the most exciting of all may be the 8, where we plan to do a Festival of Lessons and Carols as the Liturgy of the Word.

Finally, in a unanimous vote, the committee increased Steve’s housing allowance from $25,000 to $30,000, effective July 1. This results in no additional cost to the church; it is related to IRS regulations. Clergy are entitled to claim on their returns the cost of their housing as housing allowance and that portion of their income is not subject to federal tax.

Summer book club.

I am going to lead discussions of two books this summer and combine these with a potluck at my house.

  • Sunday, July 15, 4:30-7:30 p.m. — The Ten Commandments: Laws of the Heart, by Joan Chittister. The well known retreat leader, speaker, and liberal nun looks at what the 10 commandments mean for us as we seek to live in the image and likeness of God.
  • Sunday, August 26, 4:30-7:30 p.m. – Take This Bread: A Radical Conversion by Sara Miles.
  • One day Miles, a longtime atheist, walked into church, took communion, and began crying. Now a member of St. Gregory of Nyssa, an Episcopal church in San Francisco, her spiritual memoir tells the story of a young woman whose spiritual journey is quite remarkable. Her book will invite us all to reflect on our own journeys. If you can’t get these books from your local library, both are available through at well below list price. And if you buy both at the same time, you are eligible for free shipping – just remember to select it, or Amazon will charge you their standard shipping rate.

    Initial meeting of ministry teams.

    Will be today, Sunday, June 17. Because this is Father’s Day and many have already said they have plans after church, the meeting will be very brief – no more than 15-20 minutes. It will be devoted to meeting fellow team members and agreeing on the next meeting date.

    What’s your story?

    One of my projects in the coming months is to help us as a congregation tell our story more effectively. We do this in many ways and one way is through some great stories on our web site from members who share what led them to the parish. But we need more. Lots more. Would you consider adding yours? I would be happy to help you write or edit it, or if you don’t want to write it yourself, I will interview you and write it for you. Thanks!

    Summer choir schedule.

    Choir rehearsals will be at 9 each Sunday.

    Remember the hungry

    . Bring one or more non-perishable items each Sunday and place them on or beneath the table just inside the worship space.

    Schedule of events for the coming week:

    Saturday the 16th
    AA meets at 1 p.m.
    Elk Grove Parade is at 6 p.m.
    AA meets at 8:30 p.m.

    Sunday the 17th
    Worship at 10
    AA meets at 7:30 p.m.

    Monday the 18th
    AA meets at noon
    AA meets at 7 p.m.

    Tuesday the 19th
    AA meets at noon
    AA meets at 7 p.m.

    Wednesday the 20th
    Bishop’s committee meets at 11 a.m.
    AA meets at noon

    Thursday the 21st
    AA meets at noon
    GA meets at 7 p.m.

    Friday the 22nd
    AA meets at noon

    Saturday the 23rd
    AA meets at 1 p.m.
    AA meets at 8:30 p.m.

    Sunday the 24th
    Worship at 10

    Ministry teams.

    These meet briefly today after the liturgy. For those of you who were not able to be at the annual meeting, I reproduce below the handout describing them.

    2007-2008 Ministry Teams

    Here’s what’s up: We want to offer people a way to take greater ownership of the church, to explore their spiritual passions, and develop their inner life. What we’ve notice in the past is that the primary vehicle for this has been the bishop’s committee. As important as the work of the bishop’s committee is, its work is primarily concerned with church governance and it is not always the ideal vehicle for developing one’s spiritual life. Most of us, however, don’t join churches because we love to govern. We join to grow and to help others. With that in mind, we are going to separate leadership and ministry from governance, shrink the size of the bishop’s committee, and invite our talented parishioners to serve one year terms of one of four ministry teams. The four teams and some preliminary thoughts about their areas of ministry responsibility are:

    Welcoming & Celebrating
    • Oversee Yummy Hour
    • Greet visitors
    • Collect information from them
    • Assist them during the liturgy
    • Follow up
    • Develop welcome packet/strategy
    • Work on other community building activities
    • Visit the homebound and hospitalized
    • With vicar, participate in regular visiting of all members
    • Work to develop healing ministry
    • Missing member ministry – check in with members who are absent
    • Develop referrals sources in areas such as employment, mental health, legal, and financial
    • Annual campaign
    • Develop year round ways to encourage us to use our time, talent, and treasures to build the kingdom of God
    • Fundraise
    • Seek grants
    • Direct mail efforts
    • Advertising
    • Promotional materials
    • Liaison to community orgs
    • Connect with Chamber of Commerce
    • Connect with realtors
    • Work on community events
    • Web presence

    We envision these teams running from June 07 to June 08, so persons will be committing only for a year – though if you enjoy the work, you can “re-up” each year. Initially, all groups will meet on the Third Sunday of the month in place of the previous bishop’s committee meeting, which will now be held on Wednesdays.

    You will not be signing up for a committee that you’ll never get off. For these teams to work well, we will need a core of people on each team, but there will be ample opportunity to help without committing for a full year. Each team will include a member of the bishop’s committee, who ideally will not be its head or leader.

    Karen Martin and Manny Borg will help with Welcoming, Ethan Jewett with nurturing, Mary Anne O’Rourke with Generosity, and Pat Kalicki with Inviting.

    There are other important areas in the life of the church which are not going to be led by teams this year. These include Worship, Mission, Administration, Building and Grounds, Adult Formation, and Children’s Formation.

    The work in these areas will be coordinated by me or a bishop’s committee member. Since the work in them is proceeding adequately, we are going to wait until after the first four teams are well established before moving to develop teams for these six areas.

    Please give serious thought to becoming involved on one of our four teams or in some other area of church life. Thanks.

    One bread, one body.

    Our next parish meeting will be Sunday, August 26, after worship. At that meeting we will settle on a name for our church. More details on the process leading up to this will be forthcoming.

    Thanks to those of you who have responded with practical help to Tim Black in his time of need.

    One of the things I appreciate most about our congregation is that we understand that pastoral care is the work of all of us, and not just the priest. That is a mark of real spiritual maturity and an owning of the ministry we all share through our baptism. I am proud of you – and feel lucky to be a part of this congregation.

    Please remember in your prayers Manny Borg’s mother, Martha, who this week was moved into hospice.

    Manny returned to Detroit on Wednesday to be with her.

    Please continue to remember Anna Stefaniak, who is also looking for a job.

    And Carmen McCall, who is scheduled for a new round of chemotherapy for lung cancer on the 22nd.

    And Erlene and Vernon Forde as they recover from the kidney transplant surgery.

    For those of you who were not at church this past Sunday, I shared the news that on Friday the 8th I passed my thesis exam at the Jung Institute and now am a full-fledged Jungian analyst. To celebrate, I’ve even created my own web site at

    Lots of love, — Steve

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