Parish Newsletter for 18 March 2022

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Dear St. Thomas’,

My Lenten challenge to you this year was to pursue “20-1-4”: 20 minutes per day in prayer, 1 hour per week in worship, and 4 hours per month in service. During the last two weeks I have written about prayer and worship. Today we look at service.

It’s a little bit strange for me to write about service to St. Thomas’. This is a strength of St. Thomas’. As I type, there are people outdoors picking up fallen branches on campus, and someone else in the sacristy preparing for mid-week communion. Kitchen of Hope, Sunday School, Bible study leaders, Altar Guild, Tuesday Night Work Crew, Interfaith Hospitality Network, Vestry, Acolytes, Lectors, Choir & Musicians, Eucharistic Visitors, Campus Ministry hospitality: there are a seemingly endless number of different ways that the people of St. Thomas’ give of your time in service. Thank you for all you do!

And service doesn’t happen only at church. You may serve in community organizations like the Food Bank, the Lions Club, or Habitat for Humanity. Service can happen in less formal contexts, as you provide snacks for a children’s sports team, spend a few minutes to assist a neighbor in need, or just spend 20 minutes picking up the endless stream of refuse that blows across the St. Thomas’ campus between Main Street and Delsea.

Many of you reading this email already give much more than four hours per month to service. If you do, Lent is a great time to consider the spiritual aspects of service: you are channeling the power of the Holy Spirit in those activities. If you don’t, consider seriously this easy way to connect with God and neighbor. Service is one more way we live as disciples, following the example of our Lord, Jesus Christ, who came not to be served but to serve others.

Service is a gift that goes both ways, as important things are accomplished in the world and in our own hearts.




Join Sara Jordan as she leads Stations of the Cross in the nave at 7pm every Friday in Lent.

We’re planning another outdoor Easter Vigil (16 April, 6pm), telling our story around the campfire. Will you help tell our story in word or song? We’re looking for groups or individuals to tell the story of our faith in creative ways. The following scriptures are the basis of our story, and you could just read it. Even better, though, if you can act it, tell
it, evoke it, or otherwise convey each story in a manner authentic to all the colorful personalities of St. Thomas’! Please send an email to ASAP to let us know which scripture story your group is going to tell at the Easter Vigil!

Scriptures available:
– Genesis 1:1-2:4a
– Genesis 7:1-5, 11-18, 8:6-18, 9:8-13
– Exodus 14:10-31; 15:20-21
– Isaiah 55:1-11
– Baruch 3:9-15, 3:32-4:4
– Ezekiel 36:24-28
– Zephaniah 3:14-20

Our Easter Vigil wouldn’t be complete without music! Will you play or sing a hymn or sacred song for us at the Vigil? Any instrument is welcome! Sing alone or with a friend. Please send an email to ASAP with a title and the names of those performing so we can reserve you a spot on the schedule!

Our Covid protocol has changed! We will be following the CDC guidelines for Gloucester County, which will vary based on the local infection rate and, secondarily, the availability of our local hospitals to cope with current cases.

We will additionally wear our masks while singing whenever the daily new cases count  for Gloucester county exceeds 15/100k.

The CDC has downgraded the “COVID-19 Community Level” for Gloucester county to “Low” and the new infection rate was at 6.50 mid-week. While these conditions persist, masks will be optional at all St. Thomas’ services and events.

You are encouraged to wear a mask if you are at all concerned about it. You will not be the only one!


Join us this Sunday night at 7pm on Zoom as we continue our Lenten series, “Growing in the Wilderness.” Each week we will begin with a video from the Diocese of Atlanta, followed by conversation in prayer. We will close with Compline at 8pm.

Thank you to everyone who came out for Kitchen of Hope!  Our next giveaway is 9 April.

Are you interested in Confirmation? The Bishop will be in our neighborhood on Saturday, 9 April, at St. Stephen’s, Mullica Hill. Speak to Fr. Todd if you would like to undergo this rite affirming your mature decision to belong to the Episcopal Church.

The Easter Vigil (16 April 2022) is one of the four days set aside in the Episcopal calendar as especially appropriate for baptisms. If you would like to be baptized, or have a child baptized, please speak to Fr. Todd as soon as possible.

In honor of all our mothers, the ECW is supporting Mothers Matter, a nonprofit which aids moms in need.  One of their projects is to give out lovely gift bags to moms at Ronald McDonald House, daycares, and cancer patients in hospitals.  We are collecting toiletries to fill their bags and we invite you to help!  There are collection boxes in the Nave and Parish Hall.  Their Wish List includes: Liquid Hand Soap, Mini Hand Sanitizer, Small Hand Lotion, Facial Wipes, Chapstick, Lipstick, Emory Boards, Nail Polish, Nail Polish Remover Packets, Playing Cards, Puzzle Books, and Journals.  These items can all be found at Dollar Tree!  If you prefer to give a monetary donation, please put it in the collection plate in an envelope marked ECW/Mothers Matter.  Thanks so much!!

If you would like to contribute to the work of Episcopal Relief & Development serving refugees from Ukraine, you can donate here.

Lectionary readings for this week: Exodus 3:1-15, 1 Corinthians 10:1-13, Luke 13:1-9, Psalm 63:1-8

Lectionary readings for next week:  Joshua 5:9-12, 2 Corinthians 5:16-21, Luke 15:1-3, 11b-32, Psalm 32

Please continue in your daily prayers for:  Dennis, Marge, Joann, Jennifer, Lou, Mary Esther, Chuck, Ethan, Mack Family, Don, Amelia, Andrea, Gene, Jerry, Joe, Larry

Daily Covid Cases can be found for Gloucester County here.

Announcements for the parish email are due via email by noon on Wednesday of each week. You can email them to

The church calendar can be seen at for a list of upcoming events. Please help us keep it current (and avoid hurt feelings) by sending updates to the church office (

Are you serving in liturgy? Check the rota!

Watch us live on Twitch Saturdays at 5:30pm and Sundays at 10:30am!

Full-text of the liturgy is available at


Spring 2022 at St. Thomas’

  • Holy Eucharist in the Parish Hall and Streaming online: Sundays, 10:30am
  • Lenten Series “Growing in the Wilderness”:  Sundays, 7pm
  • Centering Prayer Online: Mondays, 4pm
  • Holy Eucharist in the Nave: Wednesdays, 5.30pm
  • Stations of the Cross in the Nave: Fridays, 7pm
  • Holy Eucharist in the Nave and Streaming online: Saturdays, 5:30pm



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