Message from Rev. Bob
Hello Grace and St Peter's,
I hope you all had an enjoyable Labor Day weekend. Perhaps you were able to get to the beach or the mountains or at least a backyard barbecue--socially distanced, of course.
Just before the weekend, we received some good G&SP news about a couple of our community ministries. First, our second Hamden Black History Committee scholarship recipient was named. Antony Naquib was an honor student at Hamden High School and is now a student at the University of Connecticut in Storrs. Antony is a Coptic Christian who experienced persecution--even violent persecution--in Egypt before moving to the United States. He is planning to become a doctor in order to better advocate for the underserved. Antony has been deeply involved in school, church and community activities. To name just a few of these: he was the president of Hamden High's Red Cross Club and a basketball team captain; he has been a diocesan representative for his church, a Yale New Haven Hospital volunteer and a participant in the Saturday morning Sandwich Run to the New Haven Green. We wish Antony all good things in his studies!
Second, our initial scholarship recipient, Mareshah White has become something of a celebrity. Mareshah recently began a campaign to raise scholarship funds for her Hamden High classmates. She received a $15,000 grant from AT&T to get her started and is looking for more donors to increase that amount. Perhaps our scholarship to her was something of an inspiration for this effort. Here are links to a story on News 8 and a story in the New Haven Independent about Mareshah:
New Haven Independent
Third, the Hamden Black History Committee informs me that any scholarship awards that we fund in the future will be given in memory of Anna Pauline (Pauli) Murray who, in 1977, was the first African American woman and second woman to be ordained to the priesthood in The Episcopal Church. Reverend Murray was also a lawyer, and a civil rights and women's rights activist. Reverend Murray served as parish priest in Washington, D.C. and, as you may know, Yale University--where Reverend Murray was the first African American to earn a Doctor of Juridical Science degree--named its newest residential college for her. It is an honor to be associated with her.
Finally, last Friday NBC CT broadcast a segment on the Keefe Center and its new community food garden. Our friend, Adam Sendroff, Hamden's Community Development Manager, made sure that the television crew did not leave without having a look at the Swords To Plowshares tools that are being used in the garden. Neither G&SP nor Swords to Plowshares were mentioned by name in the news story, but our tools did appear in the story at 5:30 accompanied by a brief narrative explaining where they came from. Here's the link to that reportage (unfortunately, the video on this link is from the 4:30 version of the broadcast that did not include the visual of the tools): NBC CT
From all this and from all I have observed of G&SP recently, it is evident that we continue faithfully fulfill our varied call to communal ministry even in the middle of a global pandemic. We care for our own and each other's souls through our very pleasant (even if we can't sing or receive communion) outdoor worship at St John's, North Haven; our Faith Study discussions of scripture; our Jesus' Kingship of Kinship racial justice conversation; our phone, email, zoom and in-person-but-at-a-distance outreach to one another; and more. And, as exemplified above, we are interacting with and serving our community in ways that begin to make us seem increasingly like the brightly lit city on a hill that cannot be hidden evoked by Jesus in Chapter 18 of the Gospel of Matthew. Keep at it G&SP!
Sunday School Input Wanted
Allison is preparing to start Sunday School, and is looking for input on time and location. Please click HERE to read Allison's letter.
Reminder of the Message from the Wardens
Just a reminder that we are going to be discussing the Diocese’s expectations for churches that have part-time clergy at the start of our Vestry meeting on September 15. The meeting starts at 7:00 p.m. All are welcome and encouraged to attend. A summary that discusses the impact on Grace and St. Peter’s is attached HERE
. Information about how to access the meeting may be found HERE
Rescheduled for Thursday September 17th
Reminder: Swords to Plowshares Gun Buy Back
The Swords To Plowshares ministry will be participating in a gun buy back at the Guilford Police Department, 400 Church Street, on September 26 from 10AM until 2PM. Volunteers are needed to help this event run smoothly, to hand out gun safes and lockers, and to introduce people to our work at the forge. Please let the office know if you are interested, and send an email to Kim. Equally, if you need a locked storage place for your gun or guns or want to dispose of a gun or guns, please come to the Guilford Police Department on the 26th.
Dinner for a Dollar
For our meal on September 4th, all vegetables were once again organic and freshly picked from Massaro Farms! Mary Ellen Porcelli and Andy prepared a meal of pasta primavera, Italian sausage and garlic bread. Chocolate chip cookies were served as dessert.
Thanks to Mary Ellen and Andy for cooking, Peter for the CSA, the faithful participants of the Dinner for a Dollar ministry, and to the Glory of God for the harvest of food!
The Faith Study Group continues to meet twice a month via Zoom, led by parishioner Gretchen Pritchard.
In our journey through the book “Manna and Mercy" by Daniel Erlander, we are discovering the amazing relevance of the foundational stories of the People of Israel to our lives and social issues today. Liberation from Egypt … wandering in the wilderness … receiving a body of laws … entering a new land (what happened to the people who were already living there?) … discerning how to govern themselves fairly … arguing about what kind of leadership is best for the nation … it all sounds—and is—remarkably familiar.
So, how does “the Bible” tell us how to live, and how to organize our communities? Join the discussion!
The group is open to all. There is no “homework” or advance reading for the meetings, and no question is too basic or too complicated. Regular or occasional participation are both welcome.
If you would like to find out more or if you’re interested in joining in the Faith Study Group and would like a copy of the book, please contact Gretchen Pritchard at 203-624-2520 or email@example.com. Please also let Gretchen know if you’d like to be on the Faith Study Group e-mailing list to receive reminders of the meetings and the Zoom log-in invitation.
We pray for our ministries at Arden House and Whitney Manor. We pray for our Friday night dinner ministry. We pray for the ministry of Christian Community Action in New Haven, and the families they serve. We pray for our own parish of Grace and St. Peter's.
We pray for those in need of healing: Bernadette, Marge, George, Lori, Sandi, Beryl, Micki, Matthew, Peter, Nancy, Judy, John, Chukky, Elsie, Linda, Joan, Annabelle, Charles, Fiona, Marion, Dan, Debbie, Ellen, Nicole, Regina, Cassie, Phillip, Anthony, Mary-Anne, Margaret, Gwennie, Christy, James, Pat L., Ed, Phil, Alicia, Marge, Sean, Diane, Debbie, Esther, Candice, Verna, and all those who mourn.
Names remain on the prayer list indefinitely, until the parish member who requested their inclusion asks the church office to take them off. If the concern for which you requested prayer has been resolved, please let us know! Add a prayer of thanksgiving so your church family can rejoice with you!
Joining the Episcopal Church of Connecticut in the cycle of prayer, we pray for: We pray for St. John’s, Stamford; Calvary, Stonington; and St. Mark’s, Storrs. We also pray for The Province of New England: the Dioceses of Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, Vermont, and Western Massachusetts; their bishops, clergy, parish and diocesan staff, and congregations; Provincial Synod; and all Provincial Networks.
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