Deadline to register is Today, February 19th. Living Water Ministries, a ministry of the ELCA (Evangelical Lutheran Church in America) in Michigan, will be offering a youth event for junior high youth (grades 6-8). Grand Rapids Episcopal Youth will be attending along with others from The Diocese of Western and Eastern Michigan! The “Junior High Charge” event will be held at Great Wolf Lodge in Traverse City from March 24-26. The mission is to energize and form faith through worship, small groups, and congregational time. It is hoped that through skillshops emphasizing service opportunities, leadership development, and community (through team building) youth return home equipped ready to make change in the world in the name of Christ. There will also be time to enjoy the recreational opportunities at Great Wolf Lodge. Jeff is asking for RSVPs by TODAY, February 19, 2017. We will leave around 5pm on Friday, March 24, and return early to mid-afternoon on Sunday, March 26.
With the culmination of one of the most rancorous and stressful election cycles most of us have experienced, many St. Mark’s parishioners are questioning how we could live into our baptismal covenant in a more tangible and visible manner. Today, February 19th, we will have a conversation surrounding this question at 12:30pm in the Parish Hall. Spaghetti and beverages will be served. Childcare will be available. Everyone’s voice is welcome, whether a newcomer or a long-timer; liberal, conservative, or somewhere in between.
Today (February 19, 2017) is the last Sunday for The Rev. David Brower as our Pastor During Transition. We are extremely grateful for his wise and gentle leadership. Please take the time to personally thank him at both services today. He will join us again to teach and lead discussions on Lenten Wednesdays (March 8 through April 5) following the tasty soup suppers in the Parish Hall.
From our gifted floral designers, Linda Busman & Sandie Snelling, the remaining poinsettias are available this SUNDAY only! Free to a good home!
This FRIDAY, February 17th, is Parents’ Night Out from 6pm to 10pm. $15/child or $30 max/family. RSVP to Jane Stidolph at firstname.lastname@example.org by Wednesday. Pizza will be served with a fun-filled evening of crafts, games, popcorn, and a movie. All proceeds go towards our Episcopal Youth Camp Scholarship fund.
The Lunch Bunch will be meeting again this Sunday, February 12th, following the 10:30 AM service. We will be going to Big O’s (pizza, subs, pasta). Childcare is provided at the church with pizza and fruit for the kids.
This Sunday, February 5th, is the 180th Annual Meeting of the congregation will be held following the 10:30 AM service. Highlights include the Annual Report with ministries and financial details; new Vestry members elected, and addresses by Senior Warden, Jackie Taylor, and from the Rector Search Committee by Judy Freeman-Walker. Childcare will be available. Click here for the Annual Report.
This is a reminder that the first Sunday of the month is the Discretionary Fund Sunday. The loose plate offering and those in the green envelopes at both services will be designated for the Parish Discretionary Fund. We have had a dramatic increase in the number of requests for assistance recently and our fund is depleted. We also have a young parishioner in urgent need of financial and housing assistance. Any assistance with our member that you could give would be greatly appreciated. Checks may be made payable to St. Mark’s Episcopal Church and denote the memo line as Discretionary Fund. Please call Mother Sue York if you are able to help.
If you are interested in forming relationships with other St. Mark’s members and exploring your own spiritual practices, please join the Devotional Group. We are currently reading Henri Nouwen’s Life of the Beloved. We will meet every Sunday during the month of February in the St. Mark’s Library from 9:30-10:30 AM.
Christian originally comes from the south. He began college at St. Meinrad College in Indiana where his encounter with the Benedictine Tradition changed his life. He transitioned to study music at Georgia State University in Atlanta. There, he encountered St. Luke’s Episcopal Church where he embraced the Episcopal Tradition. He was accepted in organ performance at Julliard and the College-Conservatory of Music in Cincinnati and decided to attend CCM in Cincinnati.
Following graduating from CCM, he matriculated at the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis where he completed a master’s in organ performance and a PhD in musicology with a concentration in sacred music and worship. During all those years, he worked in church music as an organist and choirmaster in the Episcopal Church, the Lutheran Church and the Roman Church.
By the mysterious movement of the Holy Spirit, Christian entered the Dominican Order, completed a master’s in theology at The Aquinas Institute of Theology and was ordained a priest in St. Louis in 1990.
Following ordination to the priesthood, Christian joined the faculty at the Institute of Pastoral Studies at Loyola University, Chicago, and was the Assistant Director of Campus Ministry at DePaul University.
From 1992-1997, he was on the faculty at Providence College in Providence, RI where he became an Associate Professor and Chair of the Music Department while also teaching in the Theology Department and Western Civilization. While there, he was also served in Campus Ministry and worked in a parish on weekends.
By another mysterious turn of the Holy Spirit, he returned to the Episcopal Church and eventually left Providence College. In Boston, he was initially a parishioner at Trinity Episcopal Church, Copley Square. Through discernment at All Saints Episcopal Church in Brookline, MA, he was received as an Episcopal priest .
Christian has served as a parish priest, in campus ministry, in academia as a full professor, a chair of a department and a Dean of Academic Affairs. He served as an Associate Priest at Parish of the Epiphany, Winchester, MA while being the Priest-in-Charge at All Saints in Stoneham, MA.
Since the summer of 2011, he has served as the Rector of Saint Peter’s Episcopal Church in Cambridge, MA, a historic parish dating back to 1842 and an extremely diverse parish in the heart of Cambridge just blocks from Harvard University and MIT.
Christian is committed to parish ministry in an urban setting where diversity is at the core of a parish. He is committed to ministry that involves singles, families, children and liturgy with beautiful sacred music and biblical preaching. He is committed to diversity in all its forms, shapes and sizes.
Christian comes to St. Mark’s with a commitment to social, economic, climate and racial justice and a commitment to people of all ages with diverse backgrounds, orientations and beliefs. He is committed to the great tradition of the Episcopal Church, to interdenominational and interfaith work, hallmarks of his work over the past several years especially in the Diocese of Massachusetts.
Excited about serving at St. Mark’s, Christian looks forward to many years of ministry in collaboration with parishioners at St. Mark’s, the Diocese and those in the broader community of Grand Rapids.
Two deadlines are rapidly approaching: (1) Applications, including references, are due to the diocese for the Episcopal Youth Event (EYE) by Tuesday, January 17. The event is scheduled for July 10-15 at the University of Central Oklahoma, Oklahoma City and is for those attending high school in the current 2016-17 school year. Jeff Brown will once again be a chaperone on this trip. You an apply at http://edwmyouthevents.blogspot.com/p/episcopal-youth-event.html. If you have any questions, email Jeff at email@example.com.
Meet the Rector’s Search Committee Chairs, Judy Freeman Walker and Baldwin Ogden.
Many thanks to our entire Search Committee for their gifts to the church during the process they’ve completed. The chairs are profiled below by another member of the committee, and both are now part of our new “Faces of St. Mark’s” page (About Us/ Faces of St. Mark’s).
Judy Freeman Walker
Judy and her husband Tom Walker have been attending St. Mark’s for about ten years. They work downtown in diverse settings and wanted a downtown church experience. They stay because of the people. The church “feels like family. It feels like where we should be,” says Judy.
In her role as Co-Chair of the Rector Search Committee, Judy can draw on an impressive range of experiences in elementary education. She’s “hooked on education” and has used her talents to provide leadership with a variety of at-risk populations: special education, early childhood, gifted and talented, and English language learners.
Because she knows parents are essential if students are to learn, she runs a Parent Institute to teach them how to partner with a school for their children’s success.
As a busy teacher and administrator, Judy wants her profession to be an expression of her faith. She has been relieved to realize that her work is also her ministry, an insight she gained during an EfM class. “How can we help every member of St. Mark’s find his or her ministry?” she asks.
Baldwin and his wife Judy have been attending St. Mark’s since 2002. They liked Fr. Ladd– particularly his “gentle, kind-hearted” manner—and have liked all the clergy who have served since then. It’s the people of St. Mark who keep the Ogdens coming back. They’re “super,” and also gentle and kind-hearted.
Baldwin has had a varied career as an attorney, practicing in Louisville, Washington, D.C., and then Grand Rapids, from 1982 until 2013, when he retired. In Grand Rapids, he was an Administrative Law Judge, deciding primarily disability cases for the Social Security Administration. He believes the organizational skills he learned as an attorney will also help his work on the Search Committee.
Baldwin supports our Breakfast Café. Two recent experiences giving rides to guests showed him its broad reach, spanning most of Grand Rapids, north and south. One guest wanted a ride to his home off Fuller, north of 196. A few weeks later, another guest asked for a ride to his home off Division, north of 28th St.
As to the future, Baldwin is looking for a rector with vision, who will assist us in an “orderly expansion of already existing ministries, within the limits of our budget.”
We are happy to welcome David Brower, who will be serving us as our Priest-in-Charge during transition for the next few months. For many years David has served urban and suburban churches in the Detroit area in the Diocese of Michigan and was prominently active in many phases of Diocesan life. He thoroughly loves his involvement in Interim Ministry in which he has served six churches in the Diocese since his return to Michigan.
The Annual Meeting of the congregation will be held following the 10:30am service on February 5th. Highlights include: the availability of the Annual Report with its ministries and financial details; new Vestry members elected, an address by Senior Warden, Jackie Taylor, and report from the Rector Search Committee by Judy Freeman-Walker. Deadline for St. Mark’s Ministry annual reports is 12 noon, Monday, January 30th.
2017 Offering envelopes are available today on the table in the Gathering area. Thank you, again, to all who have made their 2017 covenant pledges! If you haven’t filled out a pledge card and would like to do so, there are some available at the Welcome desk.
Christmas Eve services, December 24, 2016:
5:00 p.m: Family Eucharist, including the Children’s Christmas Pageant, Choir, and gifts for the children.
10:00 p.m.: Festival Eucharist, including choral music and instruments.
Bishop Hougland will be the celebrant at both Christmas Eve services.
Christmas Day, December 25, 2016:
10:00 a.m.: Christmas Day meditative communion.
Mother Sue will be the celebrant.
Each year we decorate our historic church with a beautiful array of flowers in anticipation of the great feast of Christmas. Please print the names of those you want memorialized or honored on the Flower Offering envelopes and return it in Sunday, December 18th, offering plate. All contributors will be gratefully remembered in the Christmas bulletins.
The tree is getting more and more decorated but there are still many visible green branches! Please bring your hats, scarves, gloves, socks, & toiletries for our Giving Tree. These will be put into gift bags on Friday, December 23rd for our Breakfast Cafe guests on Christmas morning.
St. Mark’s is hosting the fall Women’s Spa Day this Thursday, October 13th. Many have volunteered to help or have searched their closets and brought in warm clothes and toiletries. If you want to volunteer as well, please email Marissa Lee at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The children of St. Mark’s are collecting socks for the Foot Clinic. Any size will do, but we really would like warm socks for the upcoming winter! Bins will be located at both entrances of the sanctuary to place your donations!