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There is much happening at St. Catherine's between now and Christmas. I hope you will be present for it! You can read all about our offerings below.
As we continue the journey, I offer you one of my favorite Advent poems, written by Madeline L'Engle:
This is the irrational season
—Madeleine L’Engle, “After the Annunciation”
RESCHEDULED: Sunday, December 17 at all services
The slate of candidates is announced for our upcoming Vestry election. We are very grateful to these parish members who have stepped forward to be willing to serve us in 2018. The election will be held at all worship services on Sunday, December 17 (rescheduled due to the weather-related cancelled services on the original date of Dec. 10). We will elect four new members to three-year terms; the slate of candidates is listed below. We are very thankful for the service of our members who have represented us on the Vestry this year. Our Vestry for 2017: Frank Adams, Carol Eskew, Nelson Gale, Jason Gardiner *, Marilyn Hunter, Bill Ivey - Sr. Warden *, Beth Sandoval *, Diane Sanders, Phil Spessard, Michael Wherry, Natalie Whitlow *, Stephanie Yucius - Jr. Warden [* denotes member retiring at end of 2017].
Absentee Ballots — If you will be unable to attend worship on December 17, absentee ballots are available in the church office (email Rose Wolfe, rosestcatherines.org or call 770-971-2839) and are due in the office no later than 5:00 pm on Friday, December 15. NOTE -- If you already turned in an absentee ballot last week please abstain from voting again if you are at church on the 17th.
--> Please see the full bios for each candidate for Vestry in the last Wheel newsletter at Vestry Election
From all of our Clergy, Staff, Wardens, Vestry and People
By Jenna Parker
The annual Christmas Pageant will be held on December 17 at the 8:45 am service. All children are invited to participate! Please arrive at 8:15 am to put on costumes before the service. Contact Jenna Parker at jennastcatherines.org, 770-971-2839, with any questions or if you are interested in volunteering as an adult or youth helper.
Family & friends invited! As Advent draws to a close and the joy of Christmas is just around the corner, we gather to decorate the church for Christmas. This is always a special time filled with laughter, joy, and a little labor. We can use every hand! This is an evening for every member of the congregation, and your friends and family as well. The nursery is available for little ones during the work time.
Please bring a dessert to share. We will begin at 5:00 pm to prepare decorations for the church, parish hall, youth house and outside. At 6:30 we break for a delicious supper in the Parish Hall with Brunswick stew, minestrone soup, bread and cornbread and PB&J for the kids. Then we return to the church to sing carols and play the bells, and finish the evening with our desserts. See you there!
--> Help is needed to set up, serve, and clean up the supper, please contact Deana De La Barre deana_delabarrecomcast.net.
Each year we invite everyone to donate funds for decorating our church for Christmas and for special music at Christmas Eve services. Please insert your donation in the brown envelopes which will be in the pews (or send to the church office). Remember to write in or on the envelope your name and who you would like your gift to be remembered in thanksgiving or memory of. Or you may give online using your account in The City (select “Seasonal decoration/music” fund and enter your dedication in the memo line). Please send by December 17 to be listed in our Christmas bulletins.
St. Catherine’s parishioners supply many children's gifts to the Emmaus House Christmas Festival in Atlanta on the morning of December 23. Please select an ornament from our Giving Tree in the foyer to provide a gift for an Emmaus House boy or girl ages 9 to 18 years. A list of gift suggestions and instructions is on the table next to the tree. Please follow this procedure: (1) Wrap the gift & write a brief description on the label on the ornament; (2) Attach the ornament securely to your gift; (3) Bring to the Giving Tree by Dec. 17.
Join us at Emmaus House early on the morning of December 23 (note date change from usual Christmas Eve!). Every year, parishioners from St. Catherine's go to Emmaus House near the former Turner Field in Atlantato be “elves”, helping to distribute presents to 900+ smiling faces and escorting the guests to various events. It’s a wonderful activity, guaranteed to get you in the holiday spirit, and we would love for you to join us! If you are interested please contact Gina Bauman, tabby257aol.com, for details including start time and car pool.
Each Christmas our parishioners give to create a Special Christmas Fund, used for members of this congregation who have suffered in any number of ways, to support them at a time of year when limited resources are painfully evident. The Rector, in consultation with the staff, makes the decision as to how this fund will be used. If you would like to give to this fund simply write a check to St. Catherine’s and clearly mark it for the “Special Christmas Fund.” Any amount is gratefully accepted.
7:15 pm - All are welcome for mid-week Eucharist with space for stillness and quiet, and prayers for healing. We gather from 7:15 to 8:00 pm at the side chapel in the church for a simple Eucharist with space for stillness and meditation, simple singing and prayers for healing. For more information, please contact Mother Sarah, sarahstcatherines.org.
Festive receptions will follow the 5:00 pm and 10:30 pm Christmas Eve services this year. We invite you to donate cookies for the 5 pm service ONLY, please bring them to the Parish Hall prior to the service. Help is also needed to set up, serve, and clean up for the 5:00 pm reception, please contact Deana De La Barre deana_delabarrecomcast.net if you are able to help and for more information. Thank you!
If you or someone you know is a parishioner who is ill or shut in and will not be able to attend Christmas Eve or Christmas Day services, please notify the church office so we may schedule to bring communion to their home. (Note that Eucharistic Visitors are available for parish members year-round, not only at Christmas time!)
Check for your Reflection of the Day throughout the season from this year's collection of Advent and Christmas reflections for each day through Epiphany (January 6). They are written by our own St. Catherine's members, and you can also receive these reflections emailed directly to you each day throughout the season. Sign up for emails and/or read the complete collection on our Reflections webpage at www.stcatherines.org/reflections/advent.htm, in our printed booklets, and our Facebook page.
* - nursery available
Give the perfect gift… Give blood!
Give something during the holidays that really means something... give blood and save a life! The Red Cross Blood Drive truck makes its next stop at St. Catherine's on December 19 from 3 to 7 pm in the Parish Hall. Blood collections are always very low during the holiday season so your donation at this time will be even more important. Making an appointment is easy: call 1-800-RED-CROSS or go to www.redcrossblood.org and enter Sponsor Code STCATS to sign up for available times. BUT... remember that appointments are never required, walk ins are always welcome! Help will also be needed for greeting donors, setup and clean up, please contact Jennifer Massey, massey.jmgmail.com / 404.375.8327.
Pledge cards for 2018 needed now
Thank you so much to all those who have pledged to the mission and ministries of St. Catherine's for the coming year! We still are looking for all households/individuals who pledged last year, and all new members, to pledge this year. Please keep in mind that we set our balanced annual budget based on the pledges received, so EVERY pledge is VERY IMPORTANT now as we are developing our budget for 2018. If you will not able to pledge, then please do let us know that, all such information is in confidence.
If you have not yet done so, please pick up a pledge card at church or print one from our website at www.stcatherines.org/forms/PledgeCard.pdf, then return your card at church on Sunday or send to Rose Wolfe in the church office as soon as possible. Thank you for your prayers and support of St. Catherine's ministries and missions!
Are you considering being baptized or joining the Episcopal Church? We are considering offering a winter/spring class for people new to the Christian life and new to the Episcopal Church. If this is an offering of which you would like to be a part, please contact Elizabeth Lopez, eslopezcomcast.net or Mother Sarah, sarahstcatherines.org.
Flowers and Candles 2018
Our church flowers and altar candles are entirely supported only by your direct sponsorship of these ministries, and we thank you! The 2018 schedule is available in the foyer for you to sign up to dedicate altar flowers or candles in memory of thanksgiving for a loved one in the coming year. Note that sponsorship of any date is not limited to one or two persons, please choose the date(s) which apply to the persons or occasions you wish, and you may also partner with others to sponsor a date. Flowers are $60 per vase and candles are $20 each.
If you signed up for 2017 flowers or candles, please send your payment to the church office by December 31 if you have not yet done so.
Sunday, January 21 - One service at 10:30 am
St. Catherine’s Annual Parish Meeting will be held on January 21 at 12:00 pm following our worship service which will be at 10:30 am this day. Formation/Church School will meet at an hour earlier, at 9 am. A light lunch will be served immediately after the service, followed by the meeting. The Annual Parish Meeting is a time for the congregation to receive reports from the Rector, Senior Warden, Treasurer, and other organizations throughout the parish. It is a time to reflect on the year past and to explore the opportunities and challenges that lie ahead in the new year. We hope you will be a part of this most important time in our common life.
Annual reports due January 7
Now is the time to start thinking about annual reports -- we will gladly accept them early! Our Annual Meeting is a terrific opportunity for leaders of all our committees, groups and ministries to showcase your work. You are invited to write a piece that briefly shares your ministry's purpose, highlights for 2017, and dreams for 2018. Consider as your audience newcomers who might be interested in joining your team. We really want to have all included in the annual report which is distributed to the entire parish.
Submissions of no more than 300 words per individual committee or group are due to Rose Wolfe, rosestcatherines.org by Sunday, January 7. Contact Rose now if you would like a copy of last year's report to use as your basis for this year.
Saturday, February 10
The 2018 Valentine Dinner Dance, with the always-fabulous Silent and Live Auctions, will be held on the evening of Saturday, February 10. This is our biggest fundraiser for our Youth program and we thank you for your support. Proceeds will go to defray costs of the J2A Youth Pilgrimage in Summer 2018.
Ticket sales will be held at church before and after services starting in January. Seating will be limited, so be sure to get your tickets early! For further information, contact Youth Director Sally Paris, sallystcatherines.org.
Auction items being accepted now
We are already accepting donations for the fabulous Live and Silent Auctions – items, services, vacation homes, etc. Donations are tax deductible, which you may find helpful now as we come to the end of 2017. Contact Sally as above for information and forms.
Sunday, January 14, 4 pm
St. Catherine’s Friends of Music will present The Summit Trio as a Sunday afternoon concert on January 14. The Summit Trio is made up of three musicians on the faculty at Kennesaw State University. Robert Henry is an internationally distinguished pianist who has performed recitals at Carnegie Hall and the Kennedy Center. Helen Kim, violinist, has appeared as a soloist with the Boston Pops as well as with the Milwaukee and Atlanta Symphony Orchestras, and is currently the assistant concertmaster of the Atlanta Opera Orchestra. Charae Krueger is Principal Cellist for the Atlanta Opera and Atlanta Ballet Orchestras, and has played throughout the eastern U.S. and Europe, including Merkin Hall, Rockefeller University, Brown University and MIT. The Summit Trio appeared as part of the All Saints Atlanta Concert Series last fall.
This will be the second in St. Catherine’s sixth annual concert series which is free and open to the public. Please take this opportunity to introduce your friends and neighbors to St. Catherine’s Concert Series. Our programs always feature comments by the perfomers, and guests are invited to a reception afterwards where they may meet the artists. For future concerts check our website at www.stcatherine.org/concerts.
Ingathering Sunday, December 17
St. Catherine's Episcopal Church and Preschool will be collecting food pantry items through December 17 for the East Cobb Middle School students. This collection drive is to help the students who are in need over the winter break. Grocery bags with lists of desired items are available for pick up in the preschool office and the church foyer. Kids may decorate the bags if they would like but are not obligated to take a bag.
Items wanted: peanut butter and jelly, canned tuna or chicken, canned spaghettios/ravioli, dry pasta and sauce, individually wrapped snack foods-chips, goldfish, pretzels, personal hygiene products, toilet paper, cereal/oatmeal, microwave mac and cheese, canned fruit and vegetables. We are also collecting gift cards to Walmart, Kroger, and Publix. These gift cards may be dropped off to either the preschool office, a church usher, or to Becky Adams in the church main office.
Serving at Elizabeth Inn
St. Catherine's outstanding volunteers generously provided and served dinner at the MUST / Elizabeth Inn homeless shelter on Tuesday, November 28. Very special thanks to the following food donors and servers: The meal was provided by Nancy Barke, Sybil Coote, Deana De La Barre, Susan Jenkins, Lisa Johnston, Janet Livingston, Sally Moore and Linda Smith. Dinner was served with a smile by: Nancy Barke, Ron & Connie Bergeron, Sybil Coote, Susan Jenkins, Lisa Johnston and Sally Moore. Thanks to Tom Hunter as well for volunteering for Laundry Team on the 28th. Your gifts of food, time and service are greatly appreciated!
Next month's dinner will be on Thursday, December 28. Anyone interested in more information on volunteering at MUST / Elizabeth Inn on December 28 and to sign up, please reach out to Tracy Buckalew at tracyklpcpeoplepc.com
We are most grateful for St. Catherine's ongoing support for this important ministry that feeds more than 70 guests at Elizabeth Inn on the 28th of every month year-round.
Tracy Buckalew and Connie Bergeron
For the month of December our Stewardship 365 ministry focus is the Worship & Music Ministry Team. We are highlighting the Choristers of St. Catherine’s, our choir for children and youth:
Come, let us sing for joy to the LORD;
By Dr. Jana Williams
If you attend the 8:45 am service on Sundays, you are familiar with the joyful singing of the St. Catherine’s Choristers. Led by Dr. Jana Williams with accompaniment by Dr. Brian Williams, this choir of seventeen singers takes the biblical instruction to “sing to the Lord” very seriously. The Choristers consists of boys and girls ranging from 3rd to 12th grade who lead worship and offer anthems that support or illuminate the readings and liturgy of the day. They also adhere to the Psalms’ instructions of praising with instruments through the use of bells, chimes, rhythm instruments and other creative forms of accompaniment. Mr. Dennis Freeman sometimes plays recorder or guitar and helps parents with music organization, bell set-up, special treats, robing and more.
The gift that the Choristers offer to the congregation is from their entire families, not just from the children. Parents are very involved as volunteers, schedulers and, most importantly, chauffeurs to the 45-minute weekly practice on Wednesday nights and early to rehearse/robe on Sunday mornings.
In addition to leading music at the 8:45 am service three Sundays a month, the Choristers also sing at the 5 pm Christmas Eve service and special events such as Mother Sarah’s installation as Rector, Advent Lessons and Carols, etc.
Interested in learning more about Choristers? Please contact Dr. Jana Williams at janastcatherines.org.
The Rev. Canon John Thompson-Quartey and The Rev. Mandy Brady each observed the 20th anniversary of their ordinations to the priesthood on Sunday, December 10 by celebrating the Eucharist at St. Catherine's. John was ordained in New Jersey and now serves as our bishop's Canon for Ministry. Mandy was ordained to the priesthood in our Diocese and serves as Chaplain and Director of Pastoral Care at Canterbury Court in Brookhaven. Congratulations!
Photo and story by Bill Ivey
By Pat Pepper
I needed some volunteers recently for a one-time project, and as I was creating the list of who to contact it became very clear that I was asking people that were already very busy. I sent my request and received some responses of “I am sorry but I have a commitment that day,” or “Sure, I can come and help.” The question is, why exactly do busy people seem so reliable?
I recently read an article that said, “It is true that those with a lot on their plates are often willing to take on more. You might think that people with jobs, and people with kids, would be less likely to volunteer than those without such claims on their time. But in reality, volunteering rates are higher for the employed than those not in the workforce, and parents are more likely to volunteer than non-parents. I think reliability and busyness go hand-in-hand for two reasons. First, those who are successfully juggling a lot have good systems for avoiding dropping balls... How long will the proposed task take? What will I need to do?”
I would also include in the author’s list all of those men and women that have retired from paying jobs and are now engaged full time as volunteers.
The article also did not say that busy people at St. Catherine’s do what they do because they want to use their God-given gifts. They are busy because they want to be the hands and feet of Jesus. And the very busiest people would tell you they receive more than they give.
During this season of Advent I am especially thankful for all of the busy people at St. Catherine’s. Love is given and received. Call me if you have a minute ;-)
Contact Pat Pepper, Coordinator of Volunteer Ministry, 770.971.1269 or volunteerstcatherines.org to get connected!
Photos by Jan Potter, Bill Ivey, Ginny Lummus. See lots more in the albums at Photo Albums.
Cookies & Stories Night on December 3
Fun stories, tasty cookies for kids with Ms. Jenna and Mother Sarah, and a surprise visit from St. Nicholas! (a.k.a. Bob Pepper) -- see more photos full size in the album at ChristmasStories120317.
Advent is a busy time!
In our Parish Cycle of Ministries, we celebrate the life and work of these ministries in the upcoming weeks. Please read on to find out about each and consider if you’d like to become involved.
Thank you to the following who have recently contributed communion wine to our parish:
Sunday, December 17, 3:00 pm -- You'll join voices with MOS, soloists, and changer orchestra in this annual community event. Bring your own score or purchase one from MOS. $10 general admission. The Michael O’Neal Singers concerts are presented at Roswell United Methodist Church, 814 Mimosa Blvd, Roswell, GA 30075. Several members of St. Catherine’s sing in this well-known community chorus. Tickets are available at www.mosingers.com.
Saturday, January 13, 9 am - 12 pm at St. Catherine's: Tired of the same resolutions we all make and break within the first few weeks of every New Year? Eating Psychology Coach and founder of Bee Well Serve Well, Deborah Garrard, will provide lifestyle habits that are REALsolutions: Realistic. Empowering. Achievable. Lasting. Deborah will also share her personal perspective on the Spirituality of Health. A nutritious snack is included, created by St. Catherine's own Sue Snape, Leaf & Loaf. Workshop cost $89. To reserve, go to bit.ly/SameSongWorkshop. For questions call or email Deborah at 404-232-0442, beewell2daygmail.com.
If you have a name to be added to the Prayers please fill out the Volunteer Opportunities form in your bulletin, or contact the church office, 770-971-2839, stcatsstcatherines.org. Names will remain on the Prayer Chain list for one month unless indicated for a longer period.
ALL MEMBERS OF THE ARMED SERVICES: Pat McDougald, Matt Bermel, Tom Blackstock, Josh England, Jake England, Lucas Elgie, Andrew Hutton, Taylor Bacon, Ryan Johnson and Zach Hurley.
OUR NATION AND ITS LEADERS: Donald, our president, Nathan, our Governor, members of Congress and this Country.
DECEASED: Lynn Wood, friend of Andy Mitchell
BEFORE SURGERY: Dean Taylor, Edward Darden
THOSE IN NEED OF PRAYER: Kim Selby, Juan Sandoval, Steve Diffley, Bill Krupp, Brian Jory, Liz Burlas, Neil Guy, Carl Bright, Ruth Hepler, Kaley Harris, Lynn Barton, Erin Bennett, Ralph Patrick, Baby Christian Matthew Harvey, Bruce, Sheila Bishop, Finn Sheehey, Jessica & Kelly Sheehy, Mac & Jude Brinson, Pat Henegar, David, Gene Harlan, Jane Laughlin, Jim Lutes, Alyssa, Jordan Smith, Ellen Adams, Norma Alexander, Jo Brokenshire, Fran Corragio, Alexis Miniat, Steve Burkholder, Marti Graham.
BIRTHDAYS: (12/18) Tom Bird, Jennifer Tear, Riley Yucius, (12/19) Andrew Hutton, (12/20) Liana McLean, (12/21) George Alexander, Patricia Tarentino, Bob Olliffe, Marley Sanders, (12/23) Steve Tuemmler, Michelle LaGarde, Noelle Mace, (12/24) Eleanore Pearson, (12/25) Al Jones, Ben Martin, (12/26) Karen Kraeger, (12/27) Vera Bibbings, Stephanie Langmaid, Missy Worden, Phillip Hutton, Carter Hickson, (12/28) Ron Bergeron, Milo Thomas, Josephine Benscoter, (12/29) Nat Whitlow, Katherine Sherwood, (12/30) Steve Vavra, Nadine Pope, Julie Johnson, Julie Stone, Caroline Spessard, (12/31) Paricia Kennington, (1/1) John Martin, Jana Williams, (1/2) Janet Livingston, (1/3) Jacqueline Hurley, (1/4) Stan Dickson, Kate Tomchik, (1/5) Celia Bowers-Dean, (1/6) Stephanie Yucius, (1/7) Martha Bowden, (1/8) Mark Boutillier, Lucas Brennan, Gabriella Nienaber, (1/9) Ashley Friend, (1/10) Michael Motes, Linda Scott, (1/11) Brian Paglia, Jacob Fleming.
ANNIVERSARIES: John & Fran Brooks (12/18), Tom & Ann Snead (12/21), Chris & Jan Potter (12/23), Daniel & Lilibet Goldman (1/8).
PARISH CYCLE OF PRAYER:
We love to recognize birthdays and wedding anniversaries for everyone in our parish! We have a year-round calendar to pray for these special dates, send birthday cards, and publish in our bulletin and newsletter. Would you like your birthday or anniversary included in our remembrances? Please send names and dates to us using the Volunteer Opportunities form in your bulletin, or contact the church office.
HELP US HELP YOU
Please let the church know when you or a loved one has a medical procedure, an illness, a life transition, or other special need. We are here to serve you. Please allow us the opportunity to share your experience and offer our support. Simply contact the church office at 770-971-2839. Thank you.
Two-Week Look Ahead
Below are the next two weeks of events and activities, correct as of publication date. For the entire up-to-the-minute parish calendar, go to Calendar.
Please hold these dates:
By Youth Director Sally Paris, sallystcatherines.org
December 17: Christmas Pageant; Valentine Dinner Dance & Pilgrimage Meeting; Greening of the Church
Sunday, December 17 at 1 pm in the Youth House. The beginning of this meeting will give the ability to share knowledge of the Valentine Dinner Dance with the J2A class who will take over next year. Parents will be shadowing this year and helping in different committees. Jennifer Tear is working on coordinating adult help. After the J2A class leaves, we will discuss Pilgrimage. This is an important meeting to talk about Scotland, discuss trip cost, and hand out forms. At this meeting we will discuss deadlines to commit to the trip, payment deadlines, and when I need forms.
Wednesday, December 20 -- Please join us 6:30-8:30 pm to celebrate the season together along with Mo. Sarah. We'll have snacks, Christmas music and great fellowship!
RESCHEDULED! Thursday, December 21 at 12 noon -- Training, and pizza lunch. We will cover changes by Mo Sarah, as well as specifics for Christmas Eve and Christmas Day services. We truly appreciate your service to St. Catherine's at such a special time of year!
Congratulations to Kathleen (at right) on your Confirmation, held at the Cathedral on December 10.
Rite 13 Beach Trip is June 15-17, 2018 at Panama City Beach, Florida.
Mark your calendar now!
The Wheel is published two times per month on Fridays. All editions are in electronic form (HTML) posted on our newsletter page and distributed by email to all members subscribed to the "Parish Announcements" email list. Printed copies of each newsletter are available for pickup at church in the foyer on the Welcome Table or in the nearby wall rack. We welcome contributions of articles and photos of interest to the parish. Articles and photos are due by midnight on Wednesday 2 days before the publication date. Please submit items to Editor Karen Manno via email (below) or in her mailbox at church.
The Wheel: get every issue!
Does everyone in your family receive The Wheel, St. Catherine's newsletter? Is everyone subscribed? Email is a primary means for our parish communications. You may sign up on on our Subscription page. Or you may send the names and email addresses of everyone who would like get their own copy to Karen Manno at the email address below, or note them on the Volunteer Opportunities form in your bulletin, or contact the church office at 770-971-2829. You'll receive your online version via email, and you can find all current and prior issues of The Wheel on our website at www.stcatherines.org
Editor: Karen Manno, Karenstcatherines.org or 770-973-8668
Copyright 2017 St. Catherine's Episcopal Church