Grungy Sunday was a great success! Thank you to those who raked, blew, vacuumed, picked up, and brought snacks! Our campus is beautiful and welcoming even as we continue to meet outdoors!
Sunday the youth will be building Gingerbread Houses, observing all pandemic precautions according to our agreement with the Diocese. Please share a word of thanks with our Sunday School leaders, Barbara K. and Gretchen O.!
Youth Group will meet Sunday night at 6pm online. Talk to Daniel O. for connection details.
Intermediate Pledge Drive Report: We have received 54 pledges so far for a total of $141,612. Of the 54 Families, 23 have increased their pledge over last year (by a total of 110%) and 6 are families pledging at St. Thomas’ for the first time. Thank you to those who have already pledged. If you haven’t turned in your pledge yet, it’s not too late!
The Kitchen of Hope ministry has been working hard: and needs more workers! If you would like to help out, please contact Vivian Hanson.
Advent Vespers is a service of Evening Prayer. These services will feature homilies by young preachers from our congregation. Come hear them in person or watch for them to appear on our website within about 24 hours of the liturgy taking place. Join us on Tuesday nights at 7pm or see the recordings on the church website. RSVP suggested.
The Longest Night Mass or “Blue Christmas” is an annual offering at St. Thomas’ which recognizes both the actual longest night of the year (the winter solstice) and the figuratively long nights of sadness when personal grief and tragedy finds itself highlighted against a backdrop of seasonal gaiety and expectations of family togetherness. 2020 has been a difficult year for all of us. The Christmas holidays in particular bring sadness for many, and this quiet, solemn liturgy is a time to acknowledge that fact. Join us on Wednesday night, 16 December, at 7pm. RSVP suggested.
The Wednesday, 5.30 Eucharist will be combined with the Longest Night Mass at 7pm this week.
Christmas Eve will look different this year. The 4pm & 11pm services will be outdoors where we can have unlimited attendance and the singing of carols. The 7pm service will be indoors in the Parish Hall and live on Zoom and will feature the children’s pageant for its sermon. Attendance in the Parish Hall is limited to 23 “pews” (a “pew” holds up to two people from the same household). RSVP’s are suggested for the 7pm service.
Whether indoors or out, St. Thomas’ is taking steps to express our love for one another with safety precautions to prevent the spread of Covid. But no precautions are perfect. If you are especially vulnerable, around someone who is vulnerable, or just feel worried, you will not be judged for staying home this week or any week. Listening to those concerns and acting prudently is exactly what you are called to do in this season. If gathering in person is not the right thing for you, join us for worship online instead!
Bishop Stokes is releasing weekly recorded versions of his sermons. New sermons are usually released Saturday evenings on Youtube. Tune in to hear a great preacher who is in touch with the pulse of our life together as the Diocese of New Jersey.
Every day you can join St. Thomas’ as we observe Morning Prayer together. You can listen in on the St. Thomas’ website Monday through Saturday, and join us live on Zoom on Sundays, with a sermon, at 8am.
St. Thomas’ offers weekly Sunday School for children online Sundays at 9am. Youth Group is offered for teens on Sunday evenings at 6pm: contact Daniel O. (or leave a message at the church office) for connection details for teens.
Join us online for Centering Prayer on Mondays at 4pm.
Coffee Hour will be online Tuesday at noon.
Join the Diocese of New Jersey and Episcopal Community Services at an online Summit on Building and Equipping the Beloved Community on Saturday, 12 December, from 10-11.30am. Register at bit.ly/ECSSumit.
Announcements for the bulletin or parish email are due into the office by noon on Wednesday of each week. You can email them to firstname.lastname@example.org or call the office at 856-881-9144. Announcements are subject to editing due to limited space.
Lectionary readings for this week: Isaiah 61:1-4, 8-11, 1 Thessalonians 5:16-24, John 1:6-8,19-28, Psalm 126, or Canticle 15
Lectionary readings for next week: 2 Samuel 7:1-11, 16; Romans 16:25-27, Luke 1:26-38, Canticle 3 or Canticle 15, or Psalm 89:1-4, 19-26
Please continue in your daily prayers for: Dennis, Marge, Joann, Sandy, Kelly, Andrea, Joan, Bryan, Dot, Tracey, Julie, Bob, Kathy, Bob, Kathryn, Christopher, Rachel, Jim, Jimmie, Scott, Stephanie, Asa, John, Rob, Eileen, Bob, Brooke, Lois, Kathy, Deano, Nicole, Kyle, Dean
Saturdays, 6pm: Holy Eucharist
in the Nave: limited to 12 pews of up to two people each
Sundays, 8am: Holy Eucharist
in the Parish Hall and online
Sundays, 9am: Sunday School
online: for children
Sundays, 10.30am: Holy Eucharist
outdoors, rain or shine
Sundays, 6pm: Youth Group
online: for teens
not meeting 6 Dec
Mondays, 4pm: Centering Prayer
Tuesdays, Noon: Coffee Hour
Wednesday, 5.30pm: Holy Eucharist
outdoors, rain or shine
Wednesdays, 7.00pm: Bible Study with the Bishop
Daily on Weekdays: Morning Prayer
Emergency Pastoral Care:
Call this number if you have a pastoral emergency, such as an alert about an ailing parishioner, a hospital stay, a death in the family, or to request last rites. Leave a message and with a phone number for your call to be returned.