Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Wednesday Evening Prayer/Holy Eucharist during Advent

As we prepare during this Advent season for the coming of the Christ Child, we will be praying Evening Prayer as our Liturgy of the Word during our regular Wednesday evening celebration of the Holy Eucharist. This service, which is a bit more contemplative in nature, will include lighting of the altar candles and the candles of the Advent wreath, and will include, as usual, offerings of incense and the use of bells.

And as we usually do on Wednesday nights, we will be utilizing inclusive (non-gender-specific language) regarding God from Enriching Our Worship.

Fr. Jamie will, as usual, share a short homily often culled from Fr. John-Julian’s always entertaining Stars in a Dark World.

And, of course, we will gather at a local restaurant for supper afterward.

So, join us this Advent season for Evening Prayer and holy Eucharist as we prepare for the birth of the Christ Child at St. Stephen’s every Wednesday night beginning at 6:00 pm.

Monday, November 28, 2011

The week of Nov. 28

Join us this week at St. Stephen’s

Wednesday November 30
6:00 pm – E.P./Mass
Fr. Jamie, celebrant/preacher
Incense will be offered at this Mass

Sunday December 42 Advent
11:00 am – Holy Eucharist
Fr. Jamie Parsley, celebrant/preacher
Baptism of Madisyn de la Garza
Children’s Chapel – St. Nicholas Day celebration

Friday, November 25, 2011

Prayers for the repose of the soul of Fid Sailor

The prayers of St. Stephen’s are requested for the repose of the soul of the Rev. Hobart “Fid” Sailor, 80, brother-in-law of our own Alice Hauan, who died on Thursday, November 24. Prayers are also requested for his wife, Leah and their family.

The memorial service and celebration of Fid’s life will take place at First United Methodist Church, 203 Wisconsin Ave., Madison, WI at 2:00 pm on Friday, December 9 with a time of fellowship and refreshment to follow.

Prayers for the repose of Fid's soul will be offered at Mass on Sunday, November 27 at St. Stephen's.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Prayers for the repose of the soul of Jerry Micheletti

The prayers of St. Stephen’s are requested for the repose of the soul of our own Mark Meister’s uncle, Jerry Micheletti, who died Thursday Nov. 17 at age 55. The funeral is today (Monday) at Holy Family Catholic Church in Anaconda, MT. Please also remember Mark, Ann and their entire family in your prayers at this time.

Prayers will be offering for the repose of Jerry's soul at St. Stephen's at the Healing Mass on Tues. Nov. 22.

The week of Nov. 21

Join us this week at St. Stephen’s

Tuesday November 22
6:30 pm – Healing Eucharist
Intercessory prayers/laying-on-of-hands/Sacrament of Holy Unction
Fr. Jamie, celebrant/preacher
Jan Nelson, assisting
Michelle Gelinske, music

Wednesday November 23
7:00 pm – Thanksgiving Eve Eucharist
Fr. Jamie, officiating
Pr. Sue Koesterman, preacher
Pr. Mark Strobel, celebrant
James Mackay, music

Sunday November 271 Advent
11:00 am – Holy Eucharist
Fr. Jamie Parsley, celebrant/preacher
Children’s Chapel

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Stewardship Letter from Fr. Jamie

November 7, 2011

Dear St. Stephen’s friends,

“The fundamental reason for all acts of stewardship—gratitude for the abundance we have been given.”
- Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori, Presiding Bishop of the Episcopal Church

I love that definition of Stewardship and I think it captures our own understanding of Stewardship here at St. Stephen’s.

Certainly, we experencing God’s abundance at St. Stephen’s: Yesterday—All Saints Sunday—we had almost 80 people in church as we welcoming four new members and fellow ministers into our midst and celebrated a baptism. In all, 24 new members joined our congregation in 2011, which as put our membership over 100 members—the first time our membership has reached triple digits since the early 1980s.

So, how do we respond to this abundance?

First, we should take a few moments and reflect on our place at St. Stephen’s. In a congregation that is steadily growing, it might often be hard to find our place. But there are ways we can help and participate in this wonderful growth.

Second, we can (and should) pledge. All Episcopalians are asked to make a financial pledge based upon a percent of their income. This kind of giving is, of course, based on the Scriptural and Episcopal Church standard of what is called the tithe (or ten percent of one’s income). In the Hebrew Scriptures, the practice of tithing was simply a way of returning to God ten percent of all that had been received from God. The early Jews believed that by giving a portion of something away, the remaining part was made holy. This kind of sacrifice was, and is, a very practical way of dedicating all of life to God.

Third, we are faithful stewards by giving of our talents. Each of us has been blessed by God with various talents. These talents are what make us unique. Some of us have a gift for music, others for the physical upkeep of buildings, others for their artistic vision, others for their gift to make things beautiful, others for teaching. Each of us has something special that we can share with others here at St. Stephen’s.

Fourth, we are good stewards by being faithful ministers. Each of us as baptized Christians is called by God to serve—to serve God and to serve others in love. Ministry here at St. Stephen’s takes many forms—liturgically (in the worship service), musically, in outreach and in sharing God’s goodness and love with others in whatever small ways

Finally, we are good stewards in our over-all gratitude. We should give thanks to God and to each other regularly for the graces we have been granted to us as a congregation.

In all these ways, we show our gratitude for the abundance that God has granted to us here at St. Stephen’s. In addition, we also share in the on-going and vital ministry of our congregation.

On Sunday, November 20, the celebration of gratitude will continue. Stewardship Sunday is the time in which we celebrate the exciting ministries at St. Stephen’s and consider how we may show our gratitude for the abundance we have been given.

On Stewardship Sunday November 20, please plan on attending the 11:00 celebration of Holy Eucharist, and please plan to stay for the lunch following the Eucharist, which will be hosted once again by the Vestry.

As we near Stewardship Sunday, please consider tithing from your monetary income. But just as seriously consider the ways in which you serve God and God’s People through the ministry each of us has been called to do here.

Finally, THANK YOU. Thank you to all of you who have worked so hard and so patiently to make St. Stephen’s what it is. I am personally so grateful for each and every one of you as I pray for you by name through the course of the week in my daily prayers. I sometimes almost cannot believe that God has been so good to call me to a place where I can serve alongside a community of people who are committed to God’s love, justice and service to others. Thank you again and again!

Fr. Jamie+

Monday, November 14, 2011

The week of Nov. 14

Join us this week at St. Stephen’s

Wednesday November 16
6:00 pm – Mass
Fr. Jamie, celebrant/preacher
Incense will be offered at this Mass
Supper afterward at a local restaurant

Sunday November 20Last Pentecost/Christ the King
Stewardship Sunday
11:00 am – Holy Eucharist
Fr. Jamie Parsley, celebrant/preacher
Children’s Chapel
Transgender Remembrance Sunday

1:00 pm - Stewardship Dinner

6:00 pm – Gentle Thanksgiving

Monday, November 7, 2011

The week of Nov. 7

Join us this week at St. Stephen’s

Wednesday November 9
6:00 pm – Mass
Fr. Jamie, celebrant/preacher
Incense will be offered at this Mass

Thursday November 10
6:00 pm – Young(er) Episcopalians at Taste of Italy 2nd floor of the Avalon Events Center (613 1st Avenue North)

Sunday November 1322 Pentecost
UTO In-Gathering
11:00 am – Holy Eucharist
Fr. Jamie Parsley, celebrant/Sandy Holbrook, preacher
Children’s Chapel

12:45 – Altar Guild training

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Welcome to our new members

A very cordial welcome to our four new members who were welcomed to St. Stephen’s on All Saints Sunday:

Annie Lindley
Catherine & Michael McMullen
and Dan Nygard

And for newly baptized Braxton Marshall Haugen

It was a glorious day for everyone, with almost 80 people packing our nave!

We have so much to be thankful this past year at St Stephen’s, with a total of 24 new members joining our congregation in 2011, which has pushed our membership at St. Stephen’s to over 100 members. Although this is, of course, something to rejoice about and be grateful to God for, we must always remember and give full credit to the Holy Spirit, who is at work among us, and it is this fact that we should rejoice in.

(thank you to William Weightman for the photos)

Friday, November 4, 2011

All Saints/New Member Sunday...and a Baptism!

Join us this Sunday, November 6, for All Saints Sunday/New Member Sunday. During our 11:00 celebration of Holy Eucharist we will commemorate all of our departed loved ones who have been entered in the Book of Remembrance by placing the book on the altar during the liturgy.

We will also be welcoming at least four new members during the service!

And…we will celebrate the baptism of Braxton Marshall Haugen.

After the service, we will have a reception (with cake).

It will be a glorious morning, so please come and commemorate the Saints in our lives, welcome our new members and celebrate the Sacrament of New Birth this Sunday at St. Stephen’s.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

All Souls Requiem Eucharist

Join us Wednesday evening, November 2, at for the All Souls Requiem Eucharist at St. Stephen’s. We will remember by name all our loved ones who have passed on the greater glory of God, pray for the repose of their souls and give thanks for their presence in our lives.