Friday, August 26, 2016

Music by the Bay

St. Andrew's own Jim and Bunny Neff hosted a wonderful evening of music, food, cool breezes and good friends at Fort Monroe recently. The US Air Force Heritage Brass played patriotic tunes and old favorites. It was a great evening!

Thursday, August 25, 2016

Meet Elizabeth, Interim Minister of Youth & Children

By Elizabeth Koerner, Interim Minister of Youth & Children

I am so excited to have the opportunity to serve St. Andrew’s in my new role as Interim Minister of Youth and Children.  When Fr. David asked me to consider this invitation, I was surprised and uncertain about whether to accept the offer.  I spent some time in prayer and reflection and have come to believe the Holy Spirit has placed a challenge in my spiritual path in order for me to stretch myself in my service to God.  So, here I go, with God’s help and the support of my parish community!

Fortunately, I have had an excellent teacher and mentor in Harper.  I worked closely with her in planning and facilitating EYC for the last two years, meeting with her for several hours at least once a week.  I was also able to attend nearly every meeting and youth event, especially during the 2015-16 year.  Harper also left me with a wealth of resources for planning.  And, I will be working with our new Interim Minister of Christian Formation, the Rev. Jen Kimball, who has tremendous experience with young people.

My goal for this interim period is to continue Harper’s work.  I am not looking to make any major changes in any of the programs, but rather to continue the programs she created.  Our EYC will still meet on Sunday evenings and our youth will still to able to attend weekends at Chanco.  We will continue to offer Tweens and Children’s Chapel.  As Harper envisioned, we continue to “Plant Seeds, Make Change.”

Thursday, August 11, 2016

Taking the Lord's Prayer Challenge

This summer, the St. Andrew's community was invited to participate in the Lord’s Prayer Challenge. Parishioners of all ages prayed the Lord's Prayer wherever they were - at the beach, on vacation, at the pool - and posting videos and photos of it on Facebook. You can learn more about the challenge on our website here.

On Sunday, September 11, we will celebrate and give awards for the youngest participant, the oldest participant, the most enthusiastic, etc. You can check out all of the videos on our YouTube channel.

Monday, August 1, 2016

St. Andrew's volunteers join with Hilton Presbyterian to read to children

On July 28 a group of volunteers from St. Andrew's had the wonderful experience of reading to children at Marshall Early Learning Center as a part of the SPARK program (Summer Program for Arts, Recreation and Knowledge).  The theme this year was Read Around the World.  The children were absolutely delightful and we hope to participate, maybe even more extensively, again next year! Our volunteers were Margaret Bivens, Barbara Daniels, Merrill Hemmert, Rachel Roby, Diana Skelton and Danny Switzer.

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Looking out my window - July 25, 2016

I have struggled for several hours with the question, “What do I write for the community this time?”  Knowing that our time together has become short now, what feels central to me to share with you.  I reviewed all the paragraphs previously shared and felt that revising something written near the beginning of our journey together might be best.

BrenĂ© Brown, social worker, researcher, and Episcopalian says, “A story is facts with a soul.”  Every Sunday, I study your faces, wondering what stories live behind them in your experiences.  What stories of joy heartache, success, failure?  What stories of God’s love experienced in your life?

We each bring our personal stories to this community and make them part of the St. Andrew’s story.  Both those stories get altered by being interwoven.  St. Andrew’s story changes because of your presence and your story changes by being interwoven in the St. Andrew’s story.  No matter where you and I go if we leave here, our stories are forever different.

Each Sunday, we tell the story of our salvation in the readings and in the Great Thanksgiving.  We nest our personal stories and our church story in the great charter story of our salvation in Christ and find renewal and transformation in the bread and wine and the Spirit and the Word—the outpourings into our hearts of God’s story of saving love.  We become part of God’s ongoing story—the mission of God’s saving love in our world. 

It has been a privilege to be here with you.  The thought of having been with you, fills me with joy--sharing my story, hearing your stories, and experiencing our stories being interwoven into the tapestry we call St. Andrew’s.   You have included me in your personal stories and in the St. Andrew’s story and for that I thank you.  Wherever life takes me, my story will be forever different and richer thanks to you.
Muriel Rukeyser said it well in her poem “The Speed of Darkness”—“The universe is made of stories, not of atoms.”

God's Peace,
Fr. David, Interim Rector

Vacation Bible School - what a great week!

"Surf Shack" Vacation Bible School was held July 11-15. What a great week! There were 124 registered participants, three years old through fifth grade, and 81 volunteers who enjoyed the experience of worshiping, creating, learning, and playing together. VBS was co-sponsored by six churches this year: St. Andrew's, Hilton Presbyterian Church, Hilton Baptist Church, First Methodist Church, Hilton Christian Church, and, new this year, Genesis Christian Church. Classroom space was used at both St. Andrew's and Hilton Presbyterian, right across the street. 

THRIVE Peninsula, our VBS outreach this year, was very thankful for the 300 pairs of shoes, 400 pounds of food and $872 donated by our VBS families. 

At the last minute, we accepted a registration of five children from Suffolk. Their families wanted them to have a Christian experience this summer, but none of the churches on that side of the river accepted children younger than Kindergarten age. One of the mothers sent us a card saying, "Thank you so much for taking care of Marvin and Lilly this week. They had a wonderful time and learned a lot. May God continue to bless you all." That's what VBS is all about!

Visit our Facebook page to see hundreds of wonderful pictures from this week. 

VBS 2017
Mark you calendars now - our 2017 Vacation Bible School - Super God! Super Me! Super Possibility! - will be held July 10-14, 2017. THRIVE Peninsula will once again be our outreach focus, so start saving your shoes, sandals, boots, etc!

Thursday, July 21, 2016

A community tradition continues

Members of St. Andrew's donned their red, white and blue for the Hilton Village 4th of July Parade. This is an annual fun, family, and pet friendly event that brings out the whole neighborhood. A little rainy weather on the 4th didn't keep St. Andrew's or our neighbors from enjoying the parade. This year St. Andrew himself participated in the parade. There was also a welcome table with plenty of water and popsicles to share with spectators and paraders.