Thursday, December 30, 2010

Christmas 2010 at St. Stephen's

Thank you--and blessings for 2011

Dear friends at St. Stephen’s,

It was a glorious Christmas here at St. Stephen’s. Our Lessons and Carols and Christmas Eve services were full houses. And I am still hearing from people how wonderful the Christmas tableau of children at Christmas Eve Mass was, from our sweetly rogue shepherd to the attempted donkey ride to the tender placing of the infant Jesus at the Station at the Crèche.

I am grateful to all who you who made our Christmas Services a joyous and blessed time at St. Stephen’s. Thanks especially to our wonderful musicians – James and Michelle. The music, I think we all have to admit, was particularly beautiful. Special thanks to James for playing at all the Wednesday night Masses in Advent and Christmas.

Thank you to all of all the acolytes, worship leaders, lectors, greeters and ushers and everyone who worked hard behind the scenes. The Altar Guild did a wonderful job once again of making our Church beautiful. And the added touch of the Jesse Tree for Advent was very nice.

Thank to William Weightman for his patience and care in making the Christmas Children’s tableau such a beautiful success.

Thank you once again to Annette Morrow and the Morrow family for the donation of the absolutely lovely Nativity set, which is has been the source of much praise.

Thank you to Alice Hauan for preparing gifts for the children.

Thank you to Joy Coffey for coordinating Christmas flowers.

Thank you also to Dean Steve Sellers for preaching a very meaningful homily at our St. Stephen’s Day Mass (despite the fact that the heating wasn’t working that morning!)

I am deeply grateful to each and every one of you for being part of this wonderful family of St. Stephen’s.

My love, prayers and blessings be with each of you for a safe and prosperous 2011. And I ask your prayers as well as we look forward to a very bright future together at St. Stephen’s in 2011 and beyond.

- peace,
Fr. Jamie+

Monday, December 27, 2010

The week of December 27

Join us this week at St. Stephen's

Monday December 27The Feast of St. Stephen
11:00 am – Mass
Fr. Jamie, celebrant/The Very Rev’d Dr. Steven Sellers, preacher
Incense will be used at this Mass

Tuesday December 28St. John
10:00 am – Service at Riverview Place
Fr. Jamie, officiant/preacher

Wednesday December 29Holy Innocents
6:00 pm – Mass
Fr. Jamie, celebrant/preacher
Incense will be used at this Mass
supper afterward at a local restaurant

Sunday January 2, 20112 Christmas
10:oo am – Fr. Jamie at Holy Eucharist at St. Mark’s Lutheran Church
11:00 am – Holy Eucharist Fr. Jamie, celebrant/preacher
Children’s Chapel

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Join us for the feast of St. Stephen

Join us on Monday, December 27 at 11:00 am as we celebrate the (transferred) Feast of our patron saint, St. Stephen the Martyr.

The Rev'd Dr. Steve Sellers, Dean of Gethsemane Cathedral in Fargo, will preach and concelebrate.

So, join us as we celebrate our patron saint and our congregation.

Monday December 27The Feast of St. Stephen
11:00 am – Mass
Fr. Jamie, celebrant/The Very Rev’d Dr. Steven Sellers, preacher
Incense will be used at this Mass

St. Stephen's on the FM Pride Collective website

St. Stephen's is now listed among the GLBT friendly churhces in the FM area on the Pride Collective website. Check it out:

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Join us Christmas Eve at St. Stephen’s as we celebrate the birth of the Christ Child.

Friday December 24
8:oo pm - Holy Eucharist
Fr. Jamie, celebrant/preacher

We will begin with the Station at the Christmas Creche to bless the beautiful new nativity set which has been donated to St. Stephen’s by Annette Morrow in memory of her parents.

We will also have a Liturgical Drama during our Reading of Gospel for children. There are no lines to memorize; no huge time commitment. We are still looking for Mary, Joseph, shepherds, angels and a variety of animals. Please be at church at 7:00pm December 24, for costuming and instructions. Contact William Weightman (, 701-219-5715) for more info.

It will be a beautiful and glorious evening. So please join us as we celebrate Jesus’ birth.

Monday, December 20, 2010

The week of December 20

What an amazing past weekend at St. Stephen’s! Both the Sunday morning Mass and the service of Advent Lessons and Carols were VERY well attended (with a good many people we’ve never seen before), and this after several weeks of truly stupendous attendance at both Sunday morning and Wednesday evening Masses. On Sunday morning, onr long-time parishioner exclaimed, “It is SO wonderful not being able to find a place to park!”

In addition, the poetry reading/publication party on Saturday evening at the Spirit Room for the launch of my new book, Fargo, 1957, was truly beautiful and was, again, well-attended, including many parishioners and friends of St. Stephen's. Thank you to everyone who showed up and who made the evening so special.

Please do join us for our Christmas Eve Mass at our new time 8:00 PM. And be sure to join us for the Mass for our patron saint, St. Stephen the Martyr on his (transferred) feast day, Monday, December 27th at 11:00 am, with the Very Rev’d Dr. Steve Sellers, Dean of Gethsemane Cathedral, preaching.


This week a St. Stephen’s

Monday December 20
5:00 pm – FM-Veg Potluck (rescheduled from last week)

Wednesday December 22Observing the Feast of Bl. Henry Budd
6:00 pm – Mass
Fr. Jamie, celebrant/preacher
Incense will be offered at this Mass

supper afterward at a local restaurant

Friday December 24Christmas Eve
8:00 pm – Christmas Eve Mass
Fr. Jamie, celebrant/preacher
Children’s program (during the Gospel reading)

Sunday December 261 Christmas
11:00 am – Holy Eucharist
Fr. Jamie, celebrant/preacher
NO Children’s Chapel

Monday December 27The Feast of St. Stephen
11:00 am – Mass
Fr. Jamie, celebran
The Very Rev’d Dr. Steven Sellers, preacher
Incense will be offered at this Mass

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Advent-Christmas 2010 Letter from Fr. Jamie+

December 13, 2010
St. Lucy

My Friends at St. Stephen’s,

As we near the birth of Jesus and as we look forward toward 2011, the future is looking bright for us at St. Stephen’s. Yesterday at church, we had the second week in a row of 50 people in church! Nothing gives me greater pleasure than to look out over the nave and see a church full of people worshipping and singing together, interspersed with the joyful sounds of children and young people.

To a large extent, this joy and excitement we feel is what Advent is all about. Those of us who waited in holy expectation and worked hard for the kind of growth we are now experiencing are truly rejoicing. The vision we saw for ourselves over the years is finally becoming a reality. And through it all, we see God’s life-giving Spirit at work among us and in us.

I can repeat what I wrote in my Advent-Christmas letter from last year: serving as St. Stephen’s continues to be one of the most fulfilling experiences of my priestly life. Our life together of worship, ministry, music and outreach has been a source of great personal joy for me and has helped me to see how gracious God is in showering blessings upon faithful, committed people who truly do seek after God.

As we move forward together into this future full of hope and potential growth, I ask for your continued prayers for St. Stephen’s and your continued presence on Sunday mornings, Wednesday nights and whenever else we gather together to worship and to do ministry.

Please know that I pray, as always, for each of you individually by name over the course of each week in my daily observance of the Daily Office (Morning and Evening Prayer) . Also know that I also remember all of you at the altar during celebration of the Mass. Above all, know that I give God thanks every day for the opportunity to serve such a wonderful, caring and loving congregation of people who are committed to growth and radical hospitality.

In return, I ask for your prayers for me in my ministry. I depend on your prayers and blessings in my life and certainly can feel the full effect of those good works in lifting me up and sustaining me during those inevitable low times.

My sincerest blessings to you and to all those you love during this season of joy, hope and love.

PEACE always,
Fr. Jamie Parsley+

ALSO in today's Fargo FORUM

St. Stephen’s celebrates lessons and carols

A service of Advent lessons and carols will be held at 6 p.m. Sunday at St. Stephen’s Episcopal Church, 120 21st Ave. N. in Fargo.

A service of Advent lessons and carols will be held at 6 p.m. Sunday at St. Stephen’s Episcopal Church, 120 21st Ave. N. in Fargo.

The lessons and carols service is a traditional Anglican service of scripture readings, prayers and hymns.

For more information, call (701) 232-2076

From today's Fargo FORUM

Fargo priest, poet celebrates new book

A reading and publication party for the Rev. Jamie Parsley’s “Fargo, 1957: An Elegy” begins at 4 p.m. today in the Spirit Room, 111 Broadway, Fargo.

In this evocative and moving elegy of the devastating 1957 Fargo tornado and its victims, Parsley weaves a story of loss, poetry, pain, faith and ultimately renewal and gives voice to those victims who, before now, were unable to speak for themselves. “Fargo, 1957” is the story of the resilience and fortitude of the people who survived the storm and those who did not.

Parsley has been associate poet laureate of North Dakota since 2004. He serves as priest in charge of St. Stephen’s Episcopal Church in north Fargo and as executive assistant to the bishop for the Episcopal Diocese of North Dakota.

The publication party follows at 5 p.m. Call (701) 237-0230 for more information.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Advent Lessons and Carols December 19th

Join us this Sunday, December 19, as St. Stephen’s celebrates A Service of Advent Lessons and Carols. The service begins at 6:00 pm .

Greening of the church for Christmas will follow the service.

The Lessons and Carols service is a beautiful and traditional Anglican service of scripture readings, prayers and hymns.

Join us for this time of quiet reflection and to celebrate, in joyful expectation, the coming of the Christ Child.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

New Integrity Province 6 Coordinator named

Integrity has recently announced the New Province 6 Coordinator for Integrity, the Revd Scott Monson, from St. Paul, MN. More information about Fr. Monson follows.

As you know, St. Stephen’s is a partner congregation of Integrity, a group of Episcopalians whose mission is “to be the witness of the lesbian and gay community in the Episcopal Church and of the Episcopal Church in the lesbian and gay community.”

From Integrity:

Dear friends:It is my great pleasure and honor to introduce and appoint the Rev. Scott Monson as the Province 6 Coordinator for Integrity USA. Scott has been in leadership positions for Integrity for a number of years. He is already at work preparing for Integrity's presence and hospitality at Creating Change/Practice Spirit, Do Justice Conference in Minneapolis this February. Please welcome Scott!

More About Scott
A Minnesotan by birth and inclination, Scott has a wide-ranging employment history, no doubt owing to his life-long academic pursuit of the liberal arts with degree work in history, literature, theater and communication. Scott is privileged to have served as special assistant to Archbishop Desmond Tutu and as a past president of Integrity Minnesota. An alumnus of Seabury-Western Theological Seminary, he has been as a parish rector, currently assists at St. Paul’s on-the-Hill, St. Paul, is a member of Seabury’s board of trustees and is studying the interplay of religion and culture at the University of Minnesota. He is an avid reader and armchair historian, and wishes he were a better musician. Scott lives in Lilydale, MN, on the banks of the Mississippi River.

Contact info:
The Rev. Scott Monson
1015 Sibley Memorial Hwy. #310
St. Paul, MN 55118-3684
651-785-5103 (mobile)

Advent blessings,
Neil Houghton
Vice President for Local Affairs

Monday, December 13, 2010

The week of December 13

Wednesday December 15Observing the Feast of St. John of the Cross
6:00 pm – Mass
Fr. Jamie, celebrant/preacher
Incense will be used at this Mass
supper afterward at a local restaurant

Thursday December 16
6:30 pm – Young(er) Episcopalians at Old Broadway (22 Broadway)

Saturday December 18
4:00 pm – Reading (with special music by oboist Justin Schwartz)
5:00 pm - Publication party for Fr. Jamie’s new book of poems, Fargo, 1957
The Spirit Room
111 Broadway

5:00 pm – FM-Veg Christmas potluck at St. Stephen’s

Sunday December 194 Advent
11:00 am – Holy Eucharist
Fr. Jamie, celebrant,
Sandy Holbrook, preacher
Children’s Chapel

6pm – Advent service of Lessons and Carols
Greening of St. Stephen’s following

Friday, December 10, 2010

Fr. Jamie's book Fargo, 1957 reading Dec. 18th

Fr. Jamie Parsley will be reading from his newly published book, Fargo, 1957: An Elegy at The Spirit Room, 111 Broadway, Fargo, on Sat. Dec, 18 at 4:00 pm. A publication party will follow at 5:00 pm.

Special music will be provided by oboist Justin Schwartz.

The book, which chronicles the June 20, 1957 tornado that struck Fargo, will be published Dec. 14 by The Institute for Regional Studies at NDSU.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Guadete Sunday/OL of Guadalupe

Sunday December 12 is, in addition to being the Third Sunday of Advent (and Gaudete Sunday, on which we light the rose-colored candle on the Advent wreath), the feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe. On that day in 1531, the Virgin appeared to a Mexican native by name of Juan Diego. She left him with her image imprinted on his “tilma” (cloak), which is venerated to this day and is celebrated each year on this day. It is the perfect story to celebrate on this Gaudete Sunday, in which we rejoice (“gaudete” means “rejoice”) Jesus’ coming among us, brought to us through the humble Virgin.

On Sunday, the children in Children’s Chapel will hear the story of Our Lady of Guadalupe and will decorate images of her to place on our Jesse Tree as we prepare for Jesus’ birth.

The week of Dec. 6

Join us this week at St. Stephen’s

Wednesday December 8 – The Conception BVM
6:00 pm – Mass
Fr. Jamie, celebrant/preacher
Incense will be used at this Mass
supper afterward at a local restaurant
(Fr. Jamie will be unable to join us for supper this week)

Sunday December 123 Advent
11:00 am – Holy Eucharist
Fr. Jamie, celebrant/preacher
Pledge In-gathering
Children’s Chapel - celebration of Our Lady of Guadalupe
12:45 pm – Vestry

Thursday, December 2, 2010

St. Nicholas Sunday at St. Stephen's

Join us this Sunday, December 5 at St. Stephen's as we celebrate St. Nicholas, a truly special patron saint for children.

In Children’s Chapel on Sunday, the children will learn about the true Father Christmas, and how he works to help needy children in the Holy Land. And maybe the rest of us will hear a little something in the sermon about him as well. Both the young and young at heart will no doubt enjoy learning about St. Nick.

And there will even be a special treat for all the children after the service.

So, join us this Sunday at St. Stephen’s.