VOLUME 3, NUMBER 21, APRIL 15, 2012
For starters, Mary Beth knows her way around an office—and a church office in particular. She knows everything from how to deal with phone calls and visitors (including how to handle calls and visitors when I am trying to get work done and need not to be disturbed), how to use a copy machine, computers, and financial programs, how to organize and prioritize things from day to day, week to week, month to month, etc. All the basics for any office she does very well.
But she also knows the Church. Having grown up a cradle Episcopalian who has paid attention to and who loves her Church, Mary Beth knows the difference between Rite I and Rite II, but more importantly and discerningly she knows the difference between a Collect, a preface and a Eucharistic Prayer, between Prayers I and II and Prayers A, B, C and D, between Lent and Advent, between track I and track II in the Revised Common Lectionary, between hymns and service music and between a diocesan, a suffragan and a coadjutor. If that seems like trivial stuff, let me assure you it isn't. I can't count how many times, as I was dashing out the door, she asked which preface I wanted, or whether Prayer I should be replaced with Prayer II for the season, which might not mean much to most of those who are reading this, but those types of questions have saved my being cranky at myself more than once and they're all about the formation of a community over time through worship.
And more: Mary Beth, as a lifelong Episcopalian with long term ties to the Diocese of Newark (including a father and a sister who are priests and her own great variety of associations with a many parishes), Mary Beth knows this diocese about as well as anyone. It didn't take me long to begin to take advantage of her as an amazing resource for a newcomer to Newark like me. She knew the players and very often the politics and forces related to a great many Diocesan policies and Convention resolutions and the like. When I needed to know who would know something in the Diocese or who to go to for help, Mary Beth was always ready with the right answer or could find it for me very soon.
All this is to say that Mary Beth is irreplaceable. Which makes my breaking this news to you particularly difficult for me: Mary Beth has accepted a full-time parish administrator position at St. Peter's, Morristown.
As soon as I heard the news my heart sank—because she is so valuable –and in fact—irreplaceable. But I was also excited for her. Mary Beth will now not have to drive all over the diocese each day to several places of work, but can actually have one full time place to exercise her ministry. Not only that, but she will have full benefits—which is something I have been praying for her for some time and has been a long time coming.
So, please congratulate Mary Beth for her new job. And pray for peace and ease in this time of transition (for her and for us). And please join me in thanking her for her ministry in this parish.
Mary Beth, I can't imagine doing this without you. Godspeed and many blessings in this new phase of your ministry.
CONFIRMATION SUNDAY AT TRINITY / SAINT PHILIP'S CATHEDRAL... Please pray for our confirmand, Noelle Picard and for Randy Scott, who will be received into the Episcopal Church by the Right Reverend Mark Beckwith at Trinity and Saint Philip's Cathedral on April 15 at 3 p.m.
HELP FIGHT HOMELESSNESS IN BERGEN COUNTY... Please join and/or support Team Grace Westwood on Sunday afternoon, April 29, as we participate in Bike Bergen. Last year, 15 of us walked three miles, or biked 15 or 25 miles, raising over $3000 which was split between Family Promise of Bergen County and Christ Church CDC. See Larry Sunday if you'd like to participate.
SONGS OF HOPE CONCERT... Next Sunday, April 22, Grace Church will host a special benefit concert for Peace4Paws. From 2 – 3 p.m. there will be a concert by the Palisades Opera Company, featuring selections from Verdi, Rossini and Mozart. A reception and exhibits begins at 3 PM with food, raffles and information about pet rescue and adoption. At 3:30 p.m. there will be a musical theater concert featuring Broadway show tunes. Tickets for both shows are $30 adults, $20 for seniors, and $15 children under ten. Purchase tickets at the door. All proceeds support sanctuary for retired research animals at Kindness Ranch, the Hudson Valley Humane Society, Beagle Freedom Project and Mylestone Equine Rescue.
FOOD FOR FRIENDS, AN EASTER THOUGHT... Easter is the greatest feast of the Christian year and Christians feast in more than one sense. The Easter season lasts for 50 days, and surely during this time we can reach out to include needy persons in our celebration, especially by donating to the Food for Friends food barrel on Sundays through Pentecost, May 27 this year. The Food Pantry wish list asks specifically for tuna, cereal, peanut butter, rice, coffee, and pasta. Alternatively checks may be drawn in favor of St. Paul's CDC and marked Food Pantry. Send checks directly to St. Paul's at 451 Van Houten Street, Paterson, NJ 07501.
Thursday, May 17
Sunday, May 27
Sunday, June 3
Sunday, June 10
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