Weekly News, October 12, 2017

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Weekly News of St. Anne's Episcopal Church, Damascus, MD
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** Weekly News, October 12, 2017
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Explore our Community - Sunday 8am and 10am

** “Let us go forward in Christ's name as a community of faith; to grow in faith through worship, witness and love for one another and our neighbor”
— St. Anne's Mission Prayer
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Welcome to St. Anne's Episcopal Church, an inclusive community of faith located in Damascus, Maryland (http://saintannesdamascus.net/location) , the "northern star" of the Episcopal Diocese of Washington (http://www.edow.org/) . We invite you to establish roots in the rituals, tradition, and fellowship of the Episcopal faith. All are welcome!

** Your Support is VITAL to ensure our future!
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Income as of End of August: $253,623 Expenses: $251,023 Surplus $2,600

Pledges are about 5% behind from the summer. Please try to keep your pledges up to date - and remember, although we currently show a surplus, we are expected to have a deficit at the end of the year, so begin to pray about increasing your giving for 2018!

Please Keep your Pledges Current! (It's needed to pay our bills!)

** TONIGHT - Saint Anne's Senior Housing Community Meeting
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This is a meeting for the local community to preview preliminary plans and to ask questions about the Senior Housing Project. It is required as we make our submission to the county for the Special Exception Permit. It is also open to any members of St. Anne's.

October 12 7:00pm in the Sanctuary

** Why You Should Go To Church Part 1
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The following is reprinted from the blog The Art of Manliness and authored by Brett and Kate McKay (although this article is for women as well as youth). The blog created in 2008 has grown to be the largest men's interest magazine on the web. This is a really good article and offers some incredibly valid reasons why belonging to a faith community and attending regularly makes a difference in people's lives. It also offers some great points for EVANGELISM! It is long - so I will be reprinting it here in sections over the next couple weeks. Although if you want to read it in it's entirety just check out the blog (http://www.artofmanliness.com/2017/04/14/go-church-even-youre-not-sure-beliefs/). By the end of the article you will see how, in the authors' view

"regular church attendance functions as one of the best keys for anyone wishing to create a flourishing life — not just the religiously inclined, but even agnostics and atheists as well."

Now on to the article...

When it comes to religious institutions, Americans exhibit some contradiction between their beliefs and their actions.

On the one hand, the vast majority feel that churches and other houses of worship are powerful forces for societal good: according to the Pew Research Center (http://www.pewforum.org/2015/11/03/u-s-public-becoming-less-religious/) , almost nine in ten Americans say that religious institutions “bring people together and strengthen community bonds” and “play an important role in helping the poor and needy,” while three-quarters believe they “protect and strengthen morality in society.”

Americans’ bullishness on the positive impact of religious institutions, however, doesn’t fully extend to their active participation in them: only half attend religious services on a monthly basis, and even fewer attend weekly.

This number is naturally lowest among those without a particular religious affiliation — a cohort that has been growing in size over the past decade. “Nones,” as they are called, now represent 23% of the population (including over a third of Millennials), about a quarter of which consists of agnostics and atheists, with the rest being those who are simply religiously unaffiliated. Only 4% of these Nones attend religious services weekly, with 24% attending monthly, and almost three-fourths attending seldom to never.

But even among those who are affiliated with a religion, regular attendance at their faith’s services is rarer than one might think. Only 46% of the religiously affiliated attend services every week, with another 35% saying they go 1-2 times a month, and 18% reporting they go seldom to never. Among Millennials, the number is much lower; only about 27% attend services weekly.

When all groups are combined, only 36% of Americans attend religious services on a weekly basis (and as we’ve discussed previously, significantly less of this percentage is made up of men (http://www.artofmanliness.com/2016/08/01/christianitys-manhood-problem-an-introduction/) ). That represents a small but significant 3% drop in attendance over the last decade.

Recent decline aside, service attendance has been low for much longer than that. Gallup surveys (http://www.gallup.com/poll/1690/religion.aspx) , which peg the percentage of people who currently go to church or synagogue weekly or almost weekly at 38%, show that even 25 years ago, that number was still only 44%. And if you read books from the early 20th century, and even farther back, the authors remark on how few people were going to church even then.

Church has been a hard sell for a long time.

But there’s still a really good case to be made for going. And not just for the devout or orthodox, either.

Note: In the rest of this article, we will use “church” when referring to religious services, as Christianity-based religious institutions are what almost ¾ of Americans would participate in, if they participated. But the principles outlined apply to attendance at all houses of worship, including mosques, synagogues, etc.
(continued next week)

** Parish Conversations
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The vestry has been working on some conversational questions based on themes from the vestry retreat to discuss in small groups over the next several weeks. These conversations are meant to help the vestry continue to plan our future as a community of faith, and to help keep us growing! It's really important that we have your input and we hope that you will be able to make one of the sessions that are graciously being hosted at homes of parishioners. The conversations will last approximately 2 hours and will be facilitated by members of the Vestry.

You will see signup sheets in the parish hall for the currently scheduled sessions - each session can hold 10-12 people. THE ENTIRE VESTRY encourages you to sign up for one of the sessions and help us continue to grow as a community of faith.

Currently scheduled sessions are as follows:
* 10/27; 7pm - Reed and Peggy Owens Hosting - Damascus
* 11/3; 7pm - Shane and Cindy Lippert Hosting - Clarksburg
* 11/5; 1pm - Tom Warfield and Robin Mustain Hosting - Germantown
* 11/8; 7:30pm - Bettianne Quinn Hosting in Multi Purpose Room at St. Anne's
* 11/17; 3pm - Bryan and Victoria Imhoff Hosting - Clarksburg

Tentative: 11/12; 2pm - Bill and Chris Mathews Hosting - Ijamsville

** New Neighbors Food Drive
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St. Anne's is collecting food for refugee families in our area. The food will go to specific families we work with through our New Neighbors refugee assistance ministry, and also to the food bank that serves them. We are also collecting donations of money to assist refugee families with expenses like rent and utilities. If you would like to contribute, please drop off your donations by October 8, in the blue bin in the narthex. The shopping list appears below. Thank you!
* Basmati Rice
* Pasta Sauce - No Meat
* Pasta
* Dried Fava Beans
* Tomato Sauce
* Black Olives
* Cooking Oil
* Olive Oil
* Sugar
* Flour
* Tea Bags
* Coffee
* Toilet Paper
* Laundry Soap
* Snacks for Kids

** What makes you feel good about contributing to St Anne's?
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We are looking for people willing to stand up and tell us –  in 2 to 3 minutes at church services during our giving campaign to start in late October – how they answer this question.  Doesn’t matter if you have been giving to St. Anne’s for a month, a year, a decade or most of your adult life.  Your answer may get others thinking about giving in a way that they had never considered before!

I can point to 2 stories I heard from those willing to get up and talk about their reasons for giving that have been the great inspiration to us to commit our financial support of the faith community we have been a part of (including St. Anne’s of course)over the past 20 years or so.  I know how important it is to hear people speak of reasons for giving in their own words.  So please devote some thought and prayer to doing this, and if you are willing to do it,  call or text me at 240-620-2441, email me at timpacey@verizon.net (mailto:timpacey@verizon.net)  or see me in church.

Finally, if you have thoughts to share but speaking in front of the congregation terrifies you, not to worry.  By next week, we will provide an opportunity for you to share your thoughts in writing or electronically on What makes you feel good about contributing to St Anne's, that we can share anonymously with the rest of the congregation.

Tim Pacey
Giving campaign chairperson

** SAM (Saint Anne's Men)
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Friday Night gatherings are back! Join us for an evening of fellowship, discussion and fun! This is open to ALL men of St. Anne's and you are encouraged to attend.
* FRIDAY, October 13 AT 7:00 PM
* Reed Owens' Office 9701 New Church Street Unit ADamascus, MD 20872 

** Saint Anne's Youth
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This Sunday (10/15) I would like to have a VERY IMPORTANT meeting (during coffee hour) regarding the future of SAY and our calendar for the year.  I'd like parents & youth to do some homework before the meeting... Please bring your ideas to these questions -

1. What service based projects would you like to do during the school year? (homelessness, poverty, pets, other)
2. Summertime- From survey monkey questionnaire - most people wanted to do a mission trip, about a days ride away to a new place.  So now we need to decide where & when & with what agency (the responses were split on either agency)  I'd like each of you to do some research...  Looking at trips that include middle school as well as high school... Pick out your favorites from these 2 agencies for us to discuss this Sunday!

https://www.youthworks.com/trips/
Survey monkey comments below...
Being able to go on the trip with St. Peter's was a positive. A negative was that we had to go to the large group gatherings at night when we we all really tired from the day’s work.

I felt that the group was trying to get to the end of the week as fast as possible, but getting to see new places was really cool.

One positive that I had was that we were able to talk to the whole group of the city in the street diner and a negative would be that the program was a tad bit unorganized and a little bit confusing at times.

She seemed to have a good time and learned a lot from the experience!

Positive: We were able to help a lot of people Negative: The staff weren't as engaged and I think Group was definitely better

https://groupmissiontrips.com/
Survey monkey comments below...

It was fun because of the time we had for helping the society and some free time so we can discover and find new things in the area. I can't think of a negative it was too positive

The whole set up of the camp was more appealing, but the week went by so fast.
Positive: it was well organized and it really helped me connect with God Negative: Nothing

Faithfully, Bettianne

** St. Anne's Book Club: Books and Brunch!
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The St. Anne's Book Club will meet on Saturday, November 4 at 11 a.m. at Jean Hampton's home for books and brunch.

All are welcome! Please RSVP to Jean by Wednesday, November 1 if you plan to attend.

The book: A Piece of the World, by Christina Baker Kline
https://www.amazon.com/Piece-World-Christina-Baker-Kline-ebook/dp/B01G1FFH6Y/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1505043024&sr=8-1&keywords=a+piece+of+the+world

From the #1 New York Times bestselling author of the smash bestseller Orphan Train, a stunning and atmospheric novel of friendship, passion, and art, inspired by Andrew Wyeth’s mysterious and iconic painting Christina’s World.

"Later he told me that he’d been afraid to show me the painting. He thought I wouldn’t like the way he portrayed me: dragging myself across the field, fingers clutching dirt, my legs twisted behind. The arid moonscape of wheatgrass and timothy. That dilapidated house in the distance, looming up like a secret that won’t stay hidden."

To Christina Olson, the entire world was her family’s remote farm in the small coastal town of Cushing, Maine. Born in the home her family had lived in for generations, and increasingly incapacitated by illness, Christina seemed destined for a small life. Instead, for more than twenty years, she was host and inspiration for the artist Andrew Wyeth, and became the subject of one of the best known American paintings of the twentieth century.

As she did in her beloved smash bestseller Orphan Train, Christina Baker Kline interweaves fact and fiction in a powerful novel that illuminates a little-known part of America’s history. Bringing into focus the flesh-and-blood woman behind the portrait, she vividly imagines the life of a woman with a complicated relationship to her family and her past, and a special bond with one of our greatest modern artists.

Told in evocative and lucid prose, A Piece of the World is a story about the burdens and blessings of family history, and how artist and muse can come together to forge a new and timeless legacy.

And looking ahead: The book after this one will be Tea Girl on Hummingbird Lane, by Lisa See
https://www.amazon.com/Tea-Girl-Hummingbird-Lane-ebook/dp/B01HMXRVL8/ref=sr_1_1?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1505043214&sr=1-1&keywords=tea+girl+of+hummingbird+lane

Cathryn Conroy

** StrivingforJustice&  Peace
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**
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The Celebrant:   Will you strive for Justice and Peace among all people, and respect the dignity of every human being?

The People:      We will, with God's help.

There was feed back....

 White privilege ?

 Literacy Development?

 Micro-aggressions?

Will we strive for Justice and Peace among all people, and respect the dignity of every human being?

With God’s help, we will .

I hope you find this respectful

RMW

** Cathedral Task Force
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For the next few month the Cathedral Task Force is gathering information from the people of the Episcopal Diocese of Washington (AKA - EDOW). We would like to know your thoughts on the questions below.  Listening Sessions are on the calendar and they are : October 30th at Grace Church in Silver Spring, and November 1st at the Cathedral in DC.  The time of the sessions are 7pm to 9pm.  If you find you cannot get to a Listening Session, please feel free to answer the questions and share your thoughts with us.  Please look for the survey on the EDOW website: edow.org.  We hope to have it online very soon.  If you want to send your thoughts to an email then you can use mine: jpkbrewer@gmail.com.

1. What is the relationship between your congregation and Washington National Cathedral (AKA - WNC)?
2. What would you like the relationship to be/what are the opportunities for your congregation and WNC to collaborate and share resources?
3. The founding charter and tradition charge it to be a House of Prayer for all People, the chief mission church of the diocese, and a great church for national purposes, in all of these things working to promote religion, education, and charity.  Is that a role that the Cathedral is serving?
4.  What is WNC's role in public square?
5. What might the WNC do that it isn't currently doing?

Thank you for your time and attention to this concern. Thank you and may peace be with you,
Pam Brewer
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