From Father Ross…
I few years ago I read a blog by Colin Beavan (aka ‘No Impact Man’) which included this statement:
“Happiness, the research confirms, is derived from strong relationships, using your core talents, living a life according to your values, and connecting to something larger than yourself so you have a sense of meaning.”
I am reminded of that quote a lot these days, especially as we look forward to November, a month that can be dreary and sad what with the colourful leaves gone, and the warmth of summer only a distant memory, replaced by stark grey landscapes and cold wet weather. ‘Happiness’ might be at a premium…
On the other hand, we are in the midst of a great story-telling exercise here at St James which helps build our relationships to one another, reinforces both our core focus and overarching values, and continually calls us to be part of something larger than ourselves. That exercise is the Growing in Faith Together (GiFT) initiative.
The financial aspect, which is reported on elsewhere, is important, but of equal importance is the fact that we are all talking about possibilities and ministries and visions for this parish and the community which surrounds us.
At Parish Council this past week we looked at the results of our ‘New Ministries Ideas Survey’ and had a good discussion about how we can move some of the top items forward – challenging each other to capture the energy and contribute to the excitement which is building. (See Survey results) All of this is very exciting and helps keep the fall blahs away.
And lest we get carried away with ourselves and the importance of this moment to us and our parish, let us also remember two special days coming up in November:
- November 4th we celebrate All Saints Day, including a baptism. This reminds us of those who have gone before over the centuries preparing the way for us now, and those who are just now arriving who will build on the work that we are currently doing.
- November 11th we remember, with all Canadians, those who have served their country and put themselves in harm’s way in doing so; and who forfeited their very lives. We honour their sacrifice even as we yearn for peace.
Talk about ‘something larger than yourself’! As exciting or as gloomy as any given time may be, let us always remember that we are part of the long history of God’s love for us and for our world.
To quote from the Apostle Paul, “I always give thanks to God for all of you and mention you in my prayers, constantly remembering before our God your work of faith and labour of love and steadfastness of hope in our Lord Jesus Christ.” (1 Thessalonians 1:2-3)
Up & Coming…
Friday, Oct. 26 – All Hallow’s Eve Party & Trunk or Treat Event
6:30-8:30 pm – Tomkins Hall
Saturday, Nov. 3 – Kids & Drugs Education Program
8:30am -2:30 pm – Tomkins Hall
This is an education program developed by the RCMP to reach out and educate both kids and their parents regarding drugs. This session is for parents of and /or youth leaders working with grades 5-9. It will cover current drug trends, signs and symptoms to look for, the role and power of parents, talking with children and helping them make good decisions. Registration is limited to 30 people. The cost will be $5 to cover coffee/tea/juice/snacks and lunch. Contact Donna Rourke for further information or to register.
Wednesday, Nov. 7 – ACW Meeting
7 pm – Tomkins Hall
Please remember to bring 6 items for a women’s shelter.
Saturday, Nov. 10 – Christmas Fayre
10 am -2 pm – Tomkins Hall
Wide variety of different crafts. Jewellery, Christmas tree decorations, knitting, sewing, seasonal home décor items plus many other great treasures. SEE YOU THERE!
Friday, Nov. 16 – Community Gingerbread Making & Baking
10:00-2:00 pm – Tomkins Hall
The F.A.I.T.H. youth group will be hosting a community gingerbread making and baking session. You can make and bake your cookies with us or make your dough and take it home to freeze. Please watch in the weekly bulletin for more details. If you have any questions please see Donna Rourke
or a member of the youth group.
Saturday, Dec. 1 – Manotick Christmas Parade12:30 pm – form-up at the Arena, start time is 1 pmF.A.I.T.H. youth group welcomes everyone from our parish family to participate in the parade and help us showcase our parish and our pride in our diversity. After the parade please join us at Hyfield Place for cookies, hot chocolate and Christmas carols.
Dec. 3-21st – Morning Prayer – Monday to Friday
Sunday, Dec. 9 – 2nd Annual Gingerbread Stable/House Decorating
After the 10 am service – Tomkins Hall
This event is for all ages and everyone is welcome and encouraged to join us! A sign up sheet will be available by November 16 or you may contact Sam Hills in the church office.
|Update on GIFTThe GIFT Committee is pleased to report that, as of last Thursday, we have reached $290,000 in pledges which represents 66% of our goal. Can you believe it? And close to half of our 200 parishioners have now received a visit.
The Committee wishes to thank all those who have returned their pledge cards. Also, we send a big thank you to all our Ambassadors who made all these visits.
But now is not the time to slow down. The last third is always the most difficult to achieve. Please return your pledge cards if you have not done so already. For those who have not yet received a visit, please give our Ambassadors a warm reception.
And yes ,we have not forgotten that a number of families are not in a position to participate monetarily. If you are in that position, all we are asking for are your prayers and the opportunity to share the excitement of our plans.
Finally, the most exciting news of all is the fact that some of the suggested new Ministries, the ones that you were asked to express your opinion on, are already being implemented by various groups within our parish. The Kids and Drugs Workshop scheduled for November 3rd and co-hosted by the Manotick Community Police Centre and St James, is one of many examples. You will be hearing much more about these new Ministries in the coming weeks.
Let’s keep up that momentum and achieve our goal by the end of November.
Chair of GIFT Committee
r Gifts to the Community…
Thinking Christmas Already!
Each Christmas, St. James provides hampers of goodies to needy families who otherwise would not have much of a celebration. If you know of families (or individuals) who could benefit from the gift of a hamper, please contact Sam in the church office by November 6th.