Dear Members and Friends of Saint Timothy’s,
Change is inevitable. Being an advocate of change or disliking change is really not at issue. Things do grow and change. People grow and change. Situations, circumstances, and yes, the weather, all change and vary. Sometimes change is good and sometimes it’s not. Mostly, I do not like change, or I should say, “I don’t like having to face change.” Occasionally I find that once I’ve made a change, that I didn’t think I would like, I am in the wrong and I end up liking the change. It’s just having to face change, rather than making the change, that is the bigger problem. How we adjust to change becomes more the issue.
We are all going to have to adjust to change this month. On September 10th we are changing the times of our services to 8:30 a.m. and 10:30 a.m. We will still say Morning Prayer at 8:00 a.m. before the 8:30 a.m. Communion Service. After much consideration and after looking at the results of a survey we took last year, I have decided it will be best to change from 9:00 and 11:00 a.m. to 8:30 and 10:00 a.m. The reasons driving the change in the service times have to do with attracting more families and having times that are more commodious for most of our parishioners. I am hoping that times being moved a half hour earlier will leave more of Sunday afternoons open for activities after Church services and allow individuals and families to return home at more advantageous hours for meals and relaxation. We will be under less pressure when we will have to return to the Church for an activity on Sunday evenings. Overall, I’m hoping these new service times will be more advantageous for parishioners, more conducive to families worshipping and playing together, and be more attractive to newcomers wanting stay and make Saint Timothy’s their spiritual home.
Change is really what’s called for in our parish. The Vestry members, the members of our Standing Stewardship Committee and the persons working with our Invite, Welcome, Connect process, know what good changes can be made to help grow and develop Saint Timothy’s into an even more vibrant parish. As such, the Vestry has taken up the proposal of the Standing Stewardship Committee and hired Peter Saros to help lead us through our stewardship program this fall. This is really exciting because we now have someone here who is going to help us try something new and daring to grow and develop our parish. Mr. Saros, a consultant in the areas of church growth, development and capital funds campaigns, has already met with the Vestry to outline the way we plan on adding to the ministry needs and membership needs of the parish. The next steps are to hold a dinner and meeting with Mr. Saros that includes all the leaders of formal and informal groups in the parish. That dinner and meeting will happen on the twenty-first of this month. Next month we will hold a parish-wide meeting on October nineteenth. The finale will be our Stewardship and Development Weekend on November tenth, eleventh, and twelfth.
With this exciting opportunity, there ought not to be any of us left out. The parish development weekend will include a Family Night here at the Church on Friday night, November tenth beginning at 6:30. There will be dinner for families to enjoy together and then a program for all the children while the parents are involved with Mr. Saros and discovering what good things can be added to all the good things we’re doing here in the parish. The next day, Saturday, November 11th the seniors in the parish will be served lunch at noon so they have an opportunity to work with Mr. Saros on developing our ministry. That evening there will be a wine and cheese gathering at 6:00 p.m. for everyone who has not had the opportunity to be part of the leadership dinner, the full congregational dinner, the family night, or the luncheon. The culmination of our Stewardship Weekend will be Sunday, November 12th. On that Sunday, Mr. Saros will preach at both services. In the course of both the 8:30 and the 10:30 services, all those present hear what sort of commitment the Vestry and leaders will have made to the parish. Everyone present will then complete their pledge cards and even in the course of the service we will report how many pledge cards have been completed and the amount the parish has committed for 2018. We can then see what changes in the ministry come about through 2018.
In an effort to bring the parish together for a time of fellowship around a meal and for an opportunity to learn and discuss current topics around our Christian faith, we are having a series of what we’re calling Second Sunday Suppers. Every second Sunday of the month at 6:00 p.m., everyone is invited to a family supper, provided by the parish. This month the second Sunday is September 10th and the topic will be discovering our spiritual gifts. We will find out what God has given us as spiritual gifts and how to use them. These Second Sunday Suppers will provide a relaxing time for the members of the parish to bring their families and friends together and a time for us to invite newcomers to get to know us better.
This month will also mark the beginning of our Church School year. The tenth of the month marks our Rally Day. We rally all the troops once again and launch the Church School. We are hoping that all the parents will have registered their children, no matter how old they are, and have them present for this opening day. We have a number of faithful, knowledgeable, and energetic parishioners who have volunteered to teach in the Church School. They will be commissioned that day to be about the business of teaching our children more about Our Lord and His Church and how they are to live their lives with Him. The Men’s Fellowship will host a cookout in lieu of the Coffee Hour that day. The Church School will celebrate the success it has achieved through its participation in The Heifer Project. There are a lot of exciting things happening and we get to be part of it through this month.
The Lord continues to bless us here at Saint Timothy’s and He blesses us with new and exciting changes. Let us never forget to thank Him for blessing us with this wonderful parish family of Saint Timothy’s. Please also pray for me and my family who are also very thankful to be part of Saint Timothy’s Church.
Yours faithfully, in Christ,
The Reverend Jay C. James