June 2012

Dear Parishioners:

I attended a meeting last month on “Disaster and the Faith Community.” It was a meeting in response to the tornados we had in Arlington. In all the chaos and destruction these elements of mother nature caused, there still has to be one in charge of the relief effort. I had never thought about it before but it made logical sense: the one in charge during disasters is the fire department. We often put safety first and think of the police department being in control of the situation. But as one of the leaders of the meeting asked, “What are the police going to do, hold a gun on a house that is destroyed?” He said that jokingly of course for he was a fireman.

Another important point of the meeting was: Who are you? In times of disaster there are many people who wish to respond by helping, which is much needed. But how does the fire department know you have a good heart and wish to help? We all know there are many that wish to take advantage of people after a disaster. We have seen and heard of contractors taking advantage of people. We have even seen looting taking place when security was lacking. The fire department wanted the faith community to know that if you wish to help, they need to know who you are and what you have to offer before the disaster strikes. This way they know you are there to help and what gifts and talents you have to offer. In fact, they can call on you when needed.

When you think about it, it is amazing how similar this whole disaster response is to our beliefs as Christians. There is one in charge, not just during disasters in our life but every day of our life. The fire departments are the people who are summoned and sent to the area and people in need. We are the people whom God sends with the Good News in Christ. The fire department needs to know who you are and what it is you are offering. We need a relationship with our Lord for us to know Him and the many blessings He offers to us each and every day. We need to know our gifts and talents to offer them to his glory and honor.

In response to this meeting, I would like to invite St. Alban’s to get involved. We need a team of interested and talented people to take inventory of what St. Alban’s already has available to offer and what are the possibilities we don’t know or have thought about. For example, one of the Baptist Churches has a chainsaw team. There is a group of people who have taken a class and refresh their knowledge every so often on the safety and use of a chainsaw. This gift is often needed when trees are down blocking streets and intersections. Does St. Alban’s have this potential or are there other gifts and talents that could be used? I know we have space to become a shelter if needed. What other gifts and opportunities could we use to respond in time of disaster? If this is something you are interested in, please see me. The Churches in the area are collecting this information together to be available in time of need. Clerical work, emptying trash, providing food to the emergency staff, counseling victims are other examples of things that are needed during time of disaster. How can we as Christians respond to the needs of our City of Arlington in times of disaster?

Times of disaster are not the only time we can volunteer. Vacation Bible School is coming up very quickly. This year Gretchen Hosea has agreed to be the leader of this wonderful ministry for our children and children in the community. There is still time to volunteer and help out; there are still a number of items needed to be donated. Please pray for Vacation Bible School and the wonderful ministry and time it provides for all involved. Hard work? Yes! But most rewarding when you see those smiling faces. Thank You Gretchen and all the helpers, teachers, and leaders for their hard work and rewarding ministry.

We invite all the children and some parents to join us in the kitchen on June 3rd at 9:15 am. We will be making cookies for Father’s Day. Just as our mothers are special, fathers are also very special to us. We would like to honor our fathers on Father’s Day by providing this special treat made by the youth. Let Monica Cypher’s know if you can join in this activity.

In honor of our Patronal Feast Day, St. Alban’s Day, our Brotherhood of St. Andrew will be providing a fish fry. Tickets will go on sale the first Sunday of June. Be sure to pick yours up as we would love everyone to join us in this celebration. The fish fry also has a second purpose: The Brotherhood has been challenged to help raise funds to purchase bicycles for our Centurion’s in Malawi. Many of the clergy have several parishes or missions they oversee. The only mode of transportation that is economical enough is a bicycle. Please join us not only in celebrating our Feast Day but to help in this worthy endeavor.

In July our choir will go on vacation. I want to express my gratitude for all their ministry and practice during the year. They do such a fantastic ministry praising God with the voice of singing and leading the congregation. Our youth choir has already recessed for the summer months and we will miss their charming voices and praise. Due to Sueda’s surgery, Handbells have also recessed for the summer months. They also have done a fantastic job this year. Thank you to all of you who have served so faithfully.

Thomas Rinn , during the summer months, offers a way to aid support for the music program of St. Alban’s. Our strings and brass at Easter and Christmas are not part of the budget. Our Lenten concerts are not part of the regular budget. In order to fund these wonderful additions we have relied on contributions. In your bulletins and in this newsletter is provided a form for summer hymns. You may be a contributor by donating a certain amount and also have choice of hymns we sing during the Eucharist during July and August. Please join us in supporting our Music Program if you are able.

The time after Pentecost uses the color green. It is a symbol for growth. We are to grow more and more in the knowledge and love of the Lord during this time. It is also a time when things slow down for the most part. Many go on vacation and try to relax. But remember, worship is not something we should relax. Our first duty to God is to worship Him with all our heart, mind and strength. No matter where you are, seek out an Anglican Church to worship our Lord and Savior. He is in charge of our life. He is the source of our life. Praise him during this summer season when we are to grow more in his knowledge, love and grace.

In Christ,
Fr. K+

Permanent link to this article: http://www.saintalbans.org/2012/06/01/june-2012/

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