THE DOVE September 2011

Our Common Life: Practicing Spirituality

There is an educational shift occurring in the Episcopal Church - from "learning about" God to "knowing" God.  The 2011-12 Adult Forum program will focus on the causes of this shift and ancient practices that will help us through this transition.  This month's schedule is as follows:

  • September 11 [Father Parkin, presenter]
    Welcome and Introduction
  • September 18 [Father Hardman, presenter]
    The Times are Certainly Changing: The Emerging Church
  • September 25 [Father Hardman, presenter]
    Incarnational World View
  • October 2 [Clergy Presentation]
    A Renewed Theology of Creation

The Adult Forum is held on Sunday morning from 10:00-10:45am in the Great Hall and includes presentations by clergy, parishioners and guest speakers. All adults - young and old, newcomers and longtime parishioners - are invited to join us for this time of Christian fellowship.  New this year is an alternative small group discussion which will meet at that same time once a month in the library.  Topics will generally be geared towards a specific group and discussion will be focused but informal. The fall schedule includes:

  • September 18 ~ Welcome to our Newcomers
  • October 16 ~ Caring for our Children: Peer Pressure
  • November 27 ~ A Family Advent

Family Fall Festival ~ Saturday, September 24

Our Fall Festival has become a community family tradition. The hayride will be more fun than ever - a horse-drawn haywagon will take passengers for a ride through the village! Our pumpkin patch will have locally grown pumpkins, apples and fall flowers for sale.  Hot dogs, popcorn, donuts and apple cider will be served. The Fall Festival takes place on the parish lawn from 10am-Noon.  Family and friends are welcome!

Newcomers' Reception ~ Sunday, September 25

Fr. Jason and Jan Parkin, Eric Beatty, and the Hospitality Team invite all who are new to Holy Comforter to join us at a reception and cocktail party at the Rectory on Sunday, September 25, from 4:00-6:00pm. This informal gathering - to which children of all ages are also invited - will be a casual and fun time for people who have recently come to Holy Comforter to meet some parishioners, learn more about the parish, and become acquainted with one another. We promise that there will be no "hard sell:" we simply want to welcome you to the parish and enjoy some time together. Please RSVP here>>> or contact the parish office by September 20 to let us know you are coming. Please join us!

57th Annual Housewalk ~ Wednesday, October 5

Holy Comforter's annual outreach fundraiser has come "Home for the Holidays!" Four beautiful Kenilworth homes will be available for touring and an elegant boxed lunch and boutique will be held at the Church.  All proceeds from this event support local and global charitable organizations.  Tickets are $50; lunch is an additional $15.  Purchase tickets here>>>

Fall Fellowship Dinner ~ Friday, October 21

The Fall Fellowship Dinner is a celebration of our parish life and an opportunity for adult parishioners to gather together for fun, food and friendship. Back by popular demand are the "Refreshment Houses:" an informal cocktail hour held in parishioner homes prior to dinner in the Great Hall. Watch for your invitation to sign up for your Refreshment House and dinner. Cocktails from 5:30-7pm; dinner at 7:30pm.

Time For Women &  A New Women's Book Club

Time for Women began two years ago as a small group of working women looking for evening fellowship.  It is now a group of more than 25 women of all ages and stages in life who meet monthly simply for dinner and conversation. They gather at 6:30pm at a restaurant or someone's home on the third Tuesday of the month and everybody chips in to cover the cost of the meal.  The September 20 event will be hosted by Jan Parkin at the Rectory; please RSVP here>>> or call the parish office.

Seeking something a little more substantial, the women have now formed a book club which will meet bi-monthly on the first Wednesday of the month at 7pm in the parish library. Their first reading selection is Peace Like a River by Leif Enger. The group and discussion will be very informal, so come even if you don't finish the book. If you have questions or suggestions, contact the group leader here>>>

Youth Group Scoop

Our youth groups will resume their regular Sunday mornings on September 11 from 10:00-10:45am. The meetings are open to all students in 6th grade through high school and each group has a dedicated space on the lower level. 

iCONNECT, our new 6th and 7th grade youth group, kicks off the year with a lock-in on Friday night, September 9. Following a taco dinner in the Great Hall at 6:30pm, they will go on an outdoor nature scavenger hunt - a prelude to their Sunday study of caring for the earth. They will have an evening snack while watching the movie WALL-E. A quick breakfast will be available the next morning prior to pick up at 7:30am. Reservations and permission slips are required.

AIM [Actions In Motion] is now exclusively an 8th youth group, the goal of which is to help students transition from adolescents to teenagers. The first few meetings will focus on acknowledging and accepting their individuality, using Harry Potter and the characters of the TV show Glee as examples.

For the first time in many years, our high school youth group WHAM [We Have A Mission] will have strong representation and leadership from our senior class. We look forward to welcoming all our returning students and especially our freshmen. September will be spent getting to know each other with discussions about school, schedules, and social life. Information on the 2012 Mission: Nicaragua will also be introduced.

Be sure to review the 2011-12 Youth Group Handbook which details the programs for each youth group, including information and dates for their mission trips. Please note that all mission trips have a Sunday morning attendance requirement.  If you have questions or suggestions, feel free to contact Patti Pateros, youth group coordinator.


News from Our Directors

Reflections on Community Life: Satisfying Your Hunger and Thirst
by Patti Pateros, Community Building

Formation Principles: Transitions
Mary Johnson, Director of Children's & Youth Ministry

Music Notes
by Derek Nickels, Director of Music

The Rector's Column >>>

Special September 11th Liturgy

Remembrance, Prayer and Reflection
10 years later, we are still living in a world trying to make sense of the events of September 11, 2001. The attacks that took place on that day were not simply an unspeakable tragedy: they also marked the beginning of a new age, a new era, a new way of engaging the world around us. As with only a handful of other such iconic moments, everything changed-even the role of faith in our lives and communities-as a result of that day.

Please join others in observing and commemorating the 10th anniversary of September 11. On that Sunday afternoon, at 5:00 in the church, Holy Comforter will offer a simple, peace-filled liturgy consisting of prayer, reflection, story, and song. We will remember those who died, and raise up to God our hopes for a world transformed by God's presence and healing love.

A New Minstry for Families

by Pastor Heath Howe 
Some of us at Holy Comforter have been listening to Bob Dylan a good deal this summer. A favorite song we tend to quote is "The Times They Are A Changin'." This was true for Dylan when he wrote that song and it is true for us today. As I look at the world in which we live I notice that family life, family make up, and family values are as much a part of what is changing as anything else.

At one time the average home included generations of family members where a child walked down the hall to visit grandma in her bedroom. Now, many grandchildren visit grandparents on Skype if they are lucky. At one time, moms stayed at home and fathers went off to work. Now, many dads are the "at home parent." Families consist of single parents, same gendered parents, and adopted children. Some families are blended and some are not. The only thing predictable about families at this point in time is that they have changed as much as anything else.

This change provides a great opportunity for all of us at Holy Comforter. During this year, as the Family Ministries Associate, I look forward to hearing your ideas and desires for programs and events we can create for our richly diverse and ever changing families. My sense is some of these activities will be done here at Holy Comforter where different generations of Holy Comforter parishioners can come together for fellowship and education. Some will be activities we do as a church family beyond the walls of our sanctuary. Some will be prayers and devotional tools we can do in our homes as we gather at the beginning and end of our day. I believe the purpose for all we create is to deepen our own spiritual lives and strengthen the spiritual lives of our children. If you have ideas, questions, or interest in family ministry, please let me know.

The Time They Are A Changin'...Thank God our Lord has sent us the Holy Spirit, our Comforter and guide, to lead us along the way.

Inquirers' Class Scheduled This Fall

Are you brand new to the Episcopal Church or to the Christian faith? Or have you perhaps forgotten most everything you learned in the Confirmation Class you attended when you were a teenager? Do you want to know more about the foundations of the Christian story or harbor questions about the history and theology of the Episcopal Church? Ever wondered why some folks make the sign of the cross at certain times during the service, or what those strange clothes are called that the priests wear? Ever been confounded when someone spoke about the nave, the Eucharist, the Vestry, or transubstantiation? And just who the heck is this Archbishop of Canterbury guy we read about every so often in the New York Times, anyway? Well, now you have an opportunity to learn more about language, traditions, practices, and beliefs of the Episcopal Church and its brother and sister communities in the larger Christian world.

Beginning on Tuesday evening, October 25, and continuing on November 1, 8 and 15, Inquirers' Classes will be offered at Holy Comforter. These classes, which will be led by Fr. Parkin, are designed to offer an overview of our faith and heritage as Episcopalians and Christians. They are appropriate for people who are new to Holy Comforter or the Episcopal Church, but are also certainly intended for people who want to brush up on their knowledge of Church history, theology, and related issues. No topic is too mundane, no question too basic for these sessions.

The classes will run from 7:00-8:30pm, and will take place in the parish library. Wherever you are on your journey of discovery in Christ, please consider joining the Inquirers' Classes. It is a wonderful way to become better acquainted with others in the parish family, and to grow in knowledge and faith. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact the Rector or call 847/251-6120, ext. 115. See you on October 25th.

Christian Companionship: Stephen Ministry

Have you ever wondered what it would be like to have a Christian friend/companion visit you on a weekly or bi-weekly basis to show interest/concern for you and how well you are doing? Well, CHC has now officially made such a program possible, and several people are already being visited. It is called Stephen Ministry and is named after one of the first disciples.

Here are some of the comments we've heard:

   "I am so grateful that Holy Comforter has this ministry."
   "I feel God's healing love in this relationship."
   "I can face this - knowing that I'm not alone."
   "This is helpful beyond my expectations!"
   "I'm so thrilled that you called to check on me - it 
makes me feel good about our parish."

If you would like to talk with a trained person after learning of some distressing news, one can be made available to you. Stephen Ministers are assigned in close coordination with the clergy of the parish and are thought of as adjunctive care-givers. They are trained to respond to a variety of life's difficult times. The relationship is strictly confidential. Fr. Chris Hardman, Jean Britt or Dick Augspurger are the persons to contact to learn more about Stephen Ministry, or to set up an appointment.

In the Vineyard

We joyfully announce the birth of . . .
•  Jonah William to Margaret and Adam Tarmy on August 14.  Jonah is Lloyd and Judi Urban's 6th grandchild.

We extend our sympathy to . . .
•  David Jones and Heath Howe on the death of his mother, Frances Jones, on July 5.
•  Sue, Mike and Megan Murphy on the death of Sue's mother, Dorothy Ishmael, on July 16.
•  Louis and Adrienne Lower and the Pagels family on the death of Louis' father, Elmer Lower, on July 26.
•  Bill and Linda Gantz on the death of his mother, Flora Kimmons, on August 11.