I am a little behind in getting the 2015 St. Francis annual giving campaign kicked off. By the time you read this, I hope to be on track for Pledge Sunday, November 1.
In my Herald stewardship article last year, I told you about my life after retirement and how I had been able to devote more time to different activities involving the church, giving me the opportunity to meet parishioners from the other services. I have continued to do this in 2015 and, like last year, I have met and worked with many more people in the parish. Recently 20 of us spent a few hours at the Animal Defense League working at several different tasks, including grounds clean-up, light landscaping, walking dogs, and playing with cats. The bonding among those of us who were there was evident. Also, I am still amazed at the number of lives that are affected by the Food Bank distribution on our campus during the summer and at Thanksgiving. God is working through this parish in so many ways.
While these are part of our Outreach program, there is one big activity that anyone can get involved in, and generally the more the merrier. It is the Chores and Chow day we have a few times a year. At the last one in May, over 35 parishioners were scattered throughout the building and around the grounds doing needed clean-up and fix-up chores: cleaning gutters, raking and bagging leaves (75-80 bags!), polishing brass on the front door, removing old rusted gutters, sweeping and mopping nave and parish hall floors, repainting handicap parking places. There is something for everyone to do, and the chow at the finish is great.
I hope those of you who attended the Get-Acquainted Ministry Fair last month saw the many ministries available at St. Francis. I also hope you took advantage of this once-a-year activity to volunteer for one that interests you. Without your active participation and financial support, these ministries do not happen. The way you use your time, talents, and treasure is what keeps this parish alive with God’s love. If you weren’t able to attend the fair and would like to get information about the numerous ministries here, please ask a vestry member or one of the ministry leaders. To remind you of some of these ministries:
+ Visible Sunday morning ministries—greeters, ushers, acolytes, readers, singers, servers
+ Behind the scenes—Altar Guild, flower arranging, office volunteer
+ Children’s Chapel or Sunday School
+ Adult Christian Formation
+ Vestry service
You don’t even have to sign up for anything. Greet and welcome visitors after the services. Talk to them and ask if there is anything you can help them with. Remember our mission: “Celebrating God’s Love with Everyone.”
You will receive your pledge card in the mail during the week of October 25. Give prayerful thought to what you can give and how you can serve by giving your time and sharing your talents, and please turn in your pledge card on November 1.
(reposted from October 2015 Hilltop Herald)