The hammers were swinging on Saturday, May 12th at the Habitat Women's build! A group of about 30 volunteers, including seven members of our team, worked together to build the outside walls on one house and paint the inside of another house. It was very exciting to watch the progress. Work will continue through the summer with opportunities for volunteers to work on Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday from 8:00 to 12:00. Team members are encouraged to register as a volunteer on the Habitat website. (this is in addition to signing up as fundraiser) You can choose your days and will receive emails from Theresa at Habitat to keep you up on the latest information. The dates for June will be available for sign ups. What a difference we can make working together!
May's Room at the Table was on an unseasonably hot Saturday afternoon, and guest attendance was down slightly; we had 43 guests, with only one child.
The menu was chicken BBQ, baked beans, slaw, macaroni and cheese, peaches, chips and for dessert we had cake and ice cream.
At the end of the meal, one of the guests asked to play the piano for us. She played hymns and other popular songs and we all enjoyed listening to her. There is always something wonderful and unexpected that happens at our Room meals!
Parishioners volunteering at our meal.
Reflection: “The poor will always be with you.” What is Jesus saying to you in your faith journey? What is Jesus saying to St. James in our faith journey? After reading Scripture about the crowd wanting Jesus to stay and keep healing those around him, but he kept moving forward to the next city and also Mary Magdalene using the expensive oil on Jesus, members reflected on their own mission work, why they did it and continue to do it and what Jesus may be saying to us now.
Room at the Table teams have been updated. There is no need for a captain’s meeting at this time.
The Backpack Ministry have what they need to finish for 2018. The school system will take care of students in the summer at different school sites. 40% of the offering for the Mark Presentation will be designated to the Backpack Ministry.
Rise Against Hunger:
We had 95 participants for our Rise Against Hunger event and are grateful to the Fire Department and their help unloading and loading and for the planning committee.
There was a general feeling among committee members that we would like to partner with St. Paul’s with a future project, but may not do the Packaging of Meals in 2019.
18, 324 items were collected for the Shelter Home and Yokefellow. They are very appreciative.
Women’s Build – Episco-gals –
The first build day is May 12th. There are 5 members of the team who have already signed up. Also, on May 5th is a training day at Lenoir Builder’s Supply. Members sign up for the training day through the volunteer website. There will also be a gathering on May 8th at Lowe’s Hardware. Members are encouraged to attend and wear their shirts.
African Team Ministries (April 29, May 6th)
Susan shared with the committee a resource supported by the Episcopal Church that works as an intermediary between African and American churches, providing funding for orphan and refugee relief missions and evangelism in East Africa. They raise funds through a bazaar at church, selling jewelry and crafts made by people in the areas of Africa where they work. The items will be displayed in the Atrium on April 29th and May 6th. We will use the honor system, although CARE members may come and help where it is needed.
Next Meeting: Monday, July 30th, 10:00 am
Our April Room at the Table was captained by Team 2 on a beautiful and sunny spring day. The menu was ham and black eyed peas, cornbread, greens, slaw, mac and cheese and dessert with ice cream with toppings, which is always appreciated.
We had 54 guests, including five children, and 36 take-outs.
St. James held our annual Easter Egg Hunt after the 10:30 service on Easter Day. This year children searched for eggs that held "Alleluia" stickers. The children then worked to open their eggs (some with a little help from the adults) and place the stickers on an Alleluia poster that will be displayed in the church.
Parishioners donated candy and made bags for the children instead of putting candy inside the eggs (so that the older children didn't get all of the chocolate!).
A parishioner brought sidewalk chalk, and both the adults and the children enjoyed drawing Easter and spring-themed pictures.
Last year, St. James and St. Paul's AME partnered for the first time to participate in a hunger awareness project sponsored by Rise Against Hunger. The turnout was spectacular and everyone enjoyed working together. Both churches were eager to do another project together on Palm Sunday this year; we felt that this event would serve as a reminder that Jesus fed and served others--a perfect way to prepare for Holy Week.
We only needed 80 volunteers for our project, but between both churches, we had well over 80. Many of our participants were older, or were not able to stand for two hours, and we had enough volunteers that people could sit and rest as needed. We packed over 10,000 meals, which will be sent across the world to hungry people in need, especially women and children.
Some thoughts & observations from St. James parishioners:
"It was a busy but productive afternoon spent with our new friends from St. Paul’s AME Church. Our second year of working together to feed hungry people went so well and we found much energy in the Hogan Room. I was amazed at how quickly we can fill those bags when we all work together."
"I am often hesitant to participate in "race relations" events, because I find they do not usually allow persons to relax in getting to know others as themselves as an individual rather than as a representative of a race.. I found this year I felt more relaxed in being with others, and did feel a potential for more personal interaction in the future. I also felt the worship experiences during the Lent season contributed to this feeling of increased potential, and hope we continue such opportunities, without waiting for Lent next year."
"I was glad when this event was announced earlier in the year. I came to Rise Against Hunger last year and enjoyed meeting new people and seeing people I've known for years who attend St. Paul's. I think it is important for churches to reach out to one another, for us to have the chance to meet and have fellowship with other people in our community. I know St. James and St. Paul's are doing several Lenten events together this year, and I hope we will continue our friendship throughout the year."
More information on Rise Against Hunger:
Rise Against Hunger (formerly Stop Hunger Now) is an organization committed to ending worldwide hunger by 2030. The organization not only provides nutritious meals to those in need around the globe, especially in schools, orphanages and medical clinics; RAH also responds to crisis situations and develops sustainable ways to empower communities. Click Here for the RAH Website.
St. James, through our CARE Committee, is participating in the Caldwell Habitat for Humanity Women Build. Our team, the Episco-Gals, has grown to 24 builders, snack providers, and fundraisers.
The address of the house is 2113 Statement Court, Lenoir, located near Fairvew Presbyterian Church. A wonderful couple, their two children and a grandfather will turn this house into a home when we finish in August.
The Groundbreaking was on February 21st. The family, representatives from Habitat, various community members and a good number of Episco-Gals came to celebrate with the family as the first dirt was turned.
Building will begin in April.
CARE Committee Meeting Minutes
January 29, 2018 7:00 pm
To connect the members of St. James with people in need.
Advent – Christmas Card Making - The Christmas card-making during the Wednesday night Advent Festival was very successful . Cards were designated for Puerto Rico Hurricane Relief – we raised $505 matched by Episcopal Relief and Development to $1010. Evaluating for next year, we want Helen and Christie to head it up, if available, we need more table space, and more blank cards.
Valmead Grocery Cards –members purchased seventy $10 ($700) grocery cards to Valmead Elementary School. This project continues to be a positive way for members to be responsive during the Christmas season.
R@T –– There will be an upcoming R@T captain’s meeting to look at the program and see if there are members who may want to be involved in this program. There will be an updating of the team list, including a column called “Call on Me” for those members who want to help but cannot be on a regular team. We have not received feedback from Yokefellow concerning the use of the Gift Cards given out at the December R@T.
Backpack Ministry 2017-2018 –we may need to include Backpack in our 2018 Budget. They have been using designated monies in the past, but that line item is dwindling. Backpacks will be packed the following Thursday.
LEOS –– LEOS has a new manager Phil Mattheis who is having a volunteer meeting February 15 to get feedback. St. James’ 4th Saturday volunteer crew has managed this commitment so far, but are always looking for additional volunteers.
We, the People - the participation in the MLK week-end events was strong, especially from St. James members. There are other interdenominational events throughout Lent – a prayer walk around town, worship on Wed. evenings and the possibility of a workshop on “Spirituals” for the community. Susan reminded us of the importance of “showing up” as we focus on race relations in our community. There is a United Thank Offering grant “Becoming the Beloved Community” that may a resource.
William Lenoir –St. James members partnered with each other to provide Christmas gifts for 6 children.
Habitat for Humanity Women’s Build –the Women’s Build is to begin April 21st. Groundbreaking ceremony will be Wed. Feb. 21st at 4:00. They need to raise $70,000 to build a house and participants get sponsors who help pay $250 each to work. St. James will have a team (the Episco Gals) and CARE has given $1500 to Habitat to help members with their sponsorship. Non-members may participate on our team but only members can use CARE money for their ‘pay to play’. More information can be found on caldwellhabitat.org, womens build.
Partnership with St. Paul’s AME – We will partner to do Rise Against Hunger again on March 25th. Feedback from last year’s event was given from other CARE members. Several members voiced concerns about the length of the event and how tired they were after packing the meals.
Walk for Cancer – A parishioner came with the Hickory representative for the American Cancer Society to talk with CARE about St. James getting a team for Relay for Life and other ways members could volunteer. The Relay for Life will take place at the Hickory American Legion Fairgrounds on June 1st – 6pm to June 2 – 6 am. Nothing was decided at this time.
Distributing Dignity –We did find out that the Shelter Home does not need any more products after last year’s collection but Yokefellow is always in need and especially for baby diapers. St. James will participate in the ‘Distributing Dignity’ program for the month of February.
CARE Meetings in 2018:
April 23, Monday, 7:00
July 23, Monday, 7:00
October 22, Monday, 7:00
Children love animals. What better way to draw their attention to Lent than a gift of goats or chickens to a family in need? This Lent, the Christian Formation class will give a portion of their allowances and spare change to help a needy family. The Episcopal Church website explains the need for chickens, goats, and pigs throughout Central and South America as well as Africa. Our goal is to donate one goat ($80.00). As our children add change each night to their collection boxes, say a small prayer of support. When you see children at church, smile and ask about their offerings and make a donation, too! Blessings, love and compassion to all this Lent!
For more information go to the Episcopal Relief & Development website.
YOU ARE THERE!
Welcome to St. James' YOU ARE THERE! electronic newsletter! On these pages you will find articles about parish projects and events. Feel free to browse through our archives.