A MONTHLY NEWSLETTER FROM
Grace Episcopal Church
41 Bowman Street
Mansfield, Ohio 44903
Our Mission: “To Nurture our Members and Feed our Neighbors”
From The Rector
Frederick Beuchner compares the season or at least the onset of
Advent to that pregnant pause in a theatre just before the orchestra starts the
overture and the curtain rises. It is a
moment of delicious anticipation as the crowd quiets and waits with bated
breath as the lights go down and everyone strains to see what new reality will
be revealed. The darkness is thrown off
and light – both literally, and in the case of good drama, figuratively –
pierces the night. And for the observant
and open viewer, life is changed never to be the same again.
The key is being observant and open
– both in the theatre and in the Advent experience. God is revealing a new reality into the dark
winter days but only those who wait expectantly and quietly and with great
anticipation and openness will be caught up in it. Just as one can be lost in the glitter and
showmanship of the stage and miss the real message of the drama so one can be
so caught up in the glitter and showiness and commercial good will of this
season so as to miss the deeper message.
And that message is life changing –
God is coming into the world – here and now. And as we prepare for the coming
of the Christ Child to the stable in Bethlehem we are called to prepare for the
ongoing coming of God into our world and into our lives in new and transforming
ways each day, AND to prepare for the coming Christ in glory who will judge the
worlds and each of us.
God is coming – so be alert,
expectant and open – find time and places to be quiet so as to see and hear
God's new presence and find yourself transformed in this reality – the Babe is
a King and Love even the love of the One who judges all is the most powerful
force in all creation.
Advent Evensong planned!
On Sunday, December 1st, an Advent Evensong will be led by the Grace Church
Choir. This service will feature
"medieval style" plainsong music and promises to be a mystical
and glorious way to enter the Advent season.
Following the service we will host a
reception marking the opening of an exhibit of paintings by Lawson Sworl, a
Liberian artist whose wrok has been featured worldwide by UNICEF and the
United Nations. Mr Sworl's work
depicts Liberian life and the struggle to recover from the civil war which
decimated his country. The beautiful colors and strong expression of hope
and love even in the midst of darkness and the reality of evil certainly
speak of the Advent season.
Invite a friend and plan to join us!
December 24th 5:00 p.m. -Holy Eucharist
10:00 p.m. - Special music and carols
10:30 p.m. -Festival Holy Eucharist
December 29th 9:00 a.m. -
Festival of Lessons & Carols
ADVENT EVENT IS DECEMBER 1st
Join us in the Parish Hall (basement) following both services on Sunday, December 1st for the traditional
Advent event and to make an Advent wreath for home usage during this season of
preparation for the coming of the Christ Child!
KEEPING CHRIST IN CHRISTMAS!
Join us on Sudnay evening December 8th and December 15th for informal worship,
activities and discussions on recapturing the true meaning of Christmas as
families and communities in a culture which focuses on gifts and
celebrations that overshadow the true gift of the season - Jesus the Christ
5p.m. - 6 p.m. each week Bring a friend!
Acolyte Recognition Sunday!
Be sure to be here on Sunday, December 15th
when we recognize and give thanks for the ministry of our young
people who serve as acolytes!
The Pleasure of Your Company Is Requested at the
ECW HOLIDAY GATHERING
** LUNCHEON **
for Episcopal Church Women
Grace Episcopal Church
On December 6, 2013 - Friday
TIME: 12 noon
At the home of Margaret Ransom
Christmas in the City
This year's Christmas in the City
event for Downtown Mansfield will include an historic Church Tour and Grace
Church is a part of the agenda! The
festivities begin with the lighting of the Christmas Tree in the square at 6
p.m. Then everyone is invited to join us
on a tour of Mansfield's Historic Churches:
6-6:30- Christmas Tree Lighting at the Carrousel
6:30-7- First United Methodist
7-7:30-St. John's UCC
7:30-8- First Christian Church
8-8:30- Grace Episcopal
8:30-9-Herlihy Christmas House
9-9:30-First English Lutheran
A short program will be offered at each
Church and the choirs from each of the Churches will join to lead singing at
First English Lutheran. Plan to be part of the festivities.
"I sing a song of the saints of God"
Every Member Canvass 2013
We are off to a great start on this year's
Every Member Canvass - So far the pledges received
total a 10% increase on last year's living by the same families!
If you have not yet turned in your pledge,
please do so as soon as possible
so we can plan for the coming year.
Again thank you for your faithful giving
and give thanks for all God's saints past, present
and future who serve
and worship God in this place!
If you did not turn in a Pledge Card
and wish to have offering envelopes for 2014 please call the office. For the people that have already requested them - if you have not picked them up yet you
may do so at the entrance to the church.
2014 Altar & Baptistry Calendar
The signup sheets for 2014 Altar and Baptistry Flowers has been posted outside the
office. Please sign up quickly if you have special dates that you would like to reserve.
OUTREACH Food Pantry Report
Notes from the Pantry:
The Pantry experienced an increase in
number of families coming for food beginning November 1st. This is the date the new government food
stamp cuts became effective. In
anticipation of these cuts October was also a busy month.
Volunteer hours have also increased due to
the increase in the number of Client Volunteers. It's a blessing to have many hands helping,
especially on Wednesday's when we're unloading large trucks. The Cleveland Foodbank has changed their name
to "The Greater Cleveland Food Bank".
This change will take place over several months as they phase out their
letterhead and make sign changes.
We hosted the Cleveland Food Bank's
quarterly meeting for Ashland and Richland County. 36 Pantry and Hot Meal Directors attended
along with several of the staff from The Greater Cleveland Food Bank. A special
"Thank You" to Karen Davis who helped me set-up, clean up and decorate for the meeting and to Betty
Diemer for the beautiful and delicious cookies!
The staff from the Food Bank was very impressed with our facility and
beautiful meeting room, they've scheduled another meeting for December.
Our Holiday Pantry distribution
Tuesday, December 24th 9a – 11a
for Christmas meals. Thanks to very generous
donors and Meijer's double match, we are able to purchase ham steaks and
chicken for the pantry guests for Christmas.
Tuesday, December 31st 9a – 11a
– New Year 's Eve meal distribution. Set-up will be on the Monday prior, 9:30 –
11:30. THANK YOU for all your help and
support during these busy Holiday's.
Families Served in October –
Total People Fed: 7,113
Total Meals Provided: 21,339
Volunteer Hours: 660
We have 2,228 families registered an increase of 127 families from last month
Wishing you all a very Merry Christmas!
ADVENT IS COMING - AND SO IS THE MITTEN TREE!
It is time to begin either knitting or looking for gloves, hats, scarves and mittens for this year's
Mitten Tree. We will distribute the warm clothing at the Food Pantry in late December.
Sympathy is expressed to Dick Vogus on the death of his
brother Jim Vogus and to David Harmon on the death of his aunt Peggy Richardson. May their souls and the souls of all the
departed rest in peace and may light perpetual shine upon them.
It is with grateful hearts that we report that we have
received a generous bequest from the estate of Jon Taylor. This bequest is designated towards the repair
or replacement of our roof. Let us
continue to give thanks for Jon's life and ministry among us and his ongoing
life in God.
VESTRY NOMINATIONS SOUGHT
At the January 19, 2014 Annual Meeting we will be electing 3 people to serve on the
Grace Church Vestry for the next 3 years. The Nominating Committee of retiring Vestry
members - Lyn Baker, Karen Davis, Rita Glaser and Joanne Mudra are accepting
The Canonical requirements are that the nominee be:
1. 16 years of age or older
2. a member of the parish for at least 6 months
3. a member of a family unit that contributes to the
support of the parish
4. an attendee at church at least 3 times in the past
year (definition of active)
The Vestry recommends the following additional expectations for members:
1. Contribute to the Operating Fund of the Church.
2. Be a regular attendee in Church.
3. Be active in the overall life of the Church.
4. Agree toregularly attend Vestry Meetings including
the Annual Vestry Retreat.
5. Agree to serve on a Vestry Commission.
6. Agree to serve on other committees or programs as
agreed to by majority of Vestry members such as shepherding or stewardship
If you are interested in being considered for nomination or would like to nominate
someone else, please speak with a member of the Nominating Committee.
The Book Club will meet in December on Monday, December
30th at 6:00 p.m. in Fellowship Hall.
The book to read for the December meeting is:
HE SEES YOU WHEN YOU'R SLEEPING
By: Mary Higgins Clark
DECEMBER FLOWER CHART
DEC 1 High Rita Glaser
DEC 8 High Gary Glenwright
Baptistry Carol Loveless
DEC 15 High David & Carolyn Gross
Baptistry Rita Glaser
DEC 22 High John, Scott,Helen Matthew Toney
Baptistry Marie Laycona
DEC 29 High Christmas Flowers
December Birthdays and Anniversaries
12-2 Joseph H. Mudra
12-5 Donald Stump
12-7 Lloyd Mullet
12-11 Mitchell Mudra
12-12 Julie Baker
12-13 Jim Chipman
Catherine F. Gross
12-14 Joe Loveless
12-16 Melanie Saterfield
12-17 Lori Turner
12-18 Scott Toney
12-20 Jeanette Metcalf
12-23 Laura Jackson
12-26 Darlene Windsor
12-27 Richard Clark
12-30 Matthew Pugh
12-7 Robert & Sheila Jones
12-16 David & Carolyn Gross
12-27 Rick & Carol Taylor
MERRY CHRISTMAS TO EVERYONE!