Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Nine Lessons and Carols

This Friday, Dec. 16, at 7:00pm, come hear and join with the St. James' Choir who will lead us in a service of Nine Lessons and Carols.  We are grateful to our lectors who have key roles as well.  Followed by a reception.
There is a long tradition behind this service. See this link for the story.

Friday, December 9, 2011

Almost there!

The pink candle this third Sunday of Advent marks Gaudete Sunday.  It's where we breathe a little, and recognize that we have almost made it to Christmas.  So take time to breathe a little, and leave the checklists, etc., up to the One who loves you.

Join us for Eucharist this Sunday, Dec. 11, 10:00am.  We welcome our guest preacher, the Rev. John Newton, Canon for Lifelong Formation, in the Diocese of Texas.  He will stay on and join Nathan's adult ed. class following worship, at which time we will also offer Godly Play for our young ones.

Find out more about Canon Newton here. 

Church election results: we had three candidates and three spots available on our Bishop's Committee.  All three were approved by a congregational vote on Sunday, Nov. 27.  Congratulations to Rosemary Fellows, Michael Holder, and Martha Sneary.

Don't forget!  Our Lessons and Carols service will be held on Friday, Dec. 16 at 7:00pm.  It is free and open to the public.  

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Give Thanks

In everything give thanks; for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus. - 1 Thess. 5

Join us Wed. evening, Nov. 23, at 7:00pm for Holy Eucharist in the church for a Thanksgiving Eve service.  The Rev. Jerry Sneary will offer a meditation.

This coming Sunday is the first day of the new church year, the first Sunday in Advent.  We will be offering a new Morning Prayer service at 8:30am, starting this Sunday in the church.  It will be a quiet, meditative way to start your Sunday.

Then, after our regular Eucharist at 10:00am, we will stay on to elect our new Bishop's Committee members.  
Then, we'll proceed to the fellowship hall, for our second annual Advent Event, with music and crafts: advent wreaths, ornaments, Christmas cards and Anglican rosary beads.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Come all who are weary and I will refresh you

Enter His gates with thanksgiving and His courts with praise; give thanks to Him and praise His name. – Psalm 100:4   
(see below for note on the photo above)

Dear Family,

If you have not joined us for worship recently, know that we do miss you, and that you are valuable and needed for the work of God's kingdom.  At St. James' this season, here are ways for you to participate in His work:

1. Meals on Wheels happens on Sun., Nov. 20, this month.  If you have wheels, you are valuable to us.  We prepare helpful maps for delivery destinations, and the batches are usually no more than 6 meals or so.

2. Pledge Sunday will happen that same morning.  That's when we bring back our pledge cards and ask for God's blessing on our pledges of giving to His church in 2012.  If you did not receive a pledge card, please let us know.  

3. Our Advent Event is Nov. 27 following worship.  We'll have music and different crafts for young and older, to get us into the spirit of the new season, and celebrate the New Year in the church.  Let us know if you'd like to help get things set up for this.

4. Ongoing: a community Bible study meets at 9am on Weds. in the library; the mens' group, the Brotherhood of St. Andrew, will meet at El Corral Lozano on Sat., Dec. 3, at 9am.

Note: the baptismal font is in the ruins of a 5th century Byzantine church, located in Shivta, a world heritage site in Israel.  

Friday, November 4, 2011

Anglican prayer beads - Craft Night Sat. Nov. 5, 4:30

Anglican prayer beads?  Yes, they are part of our prayer tradition and fun to make!  Come to our Craft Night tomorrow, Sat., Nov. 5 at 4:30-6:30pm, and make your own set.  You'll even learn how to pray with them.  You can also make a set of your own jewelry.  Projects for children also.  AND free supper included.  Fellowship hall - be there!

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Come Sing of the Saints of God

Behold what manner of love the Father has given unto us, 
that we should be called the children of God. - 1 John 3.

Come join us for Holy Eucharist tonight, All Saints' Day, at 8pm.  We will remember the dead, particularly those who are connected to our church family members.

Friday, October 28, 2011

Giving Thanks for our Young People

Be strong and courageous...for the Battle is not yours, it's the Lord's.  Whether we are young or older, we always encounter battles in our lives.

This Sunday at 10am, we'll have our regular Eucharist service.  Within it, however, we'll place special emphasis on our young people.  The sermon will be for young and older alike, so please plan to keep children in the service for its entirety if at all possible.  Nursery care of course will be available should there be a need.

Our theme on Sunday will center around the Battle of Jericho.

ECW meeting will happen immediately after the service.  Godly Play will also be offered at the same time for all our young people.

Finally, a special THANK YOU to all who helped make our Fish Fry last Sunday a great success!

Friday, October 14, 2011

Bring Them To Where the Food Is

Good morning, Church family,

You've got to check out this video on the diocesan website.  Just click on the little TV-shaped icon to play it.

It reminded me of how easy it is to help another person enter God's joy on a Sunday morning.  

The videos are helping to promote the Bishop's Conference on Evangelism, happening Nov. 11-12 at the stunningly beautiful Camp Allen.  What a great place for a retreat alongside.  Please see Dr. Tad Whited (eawMRC@aol.com) on Sunday or email him if interested in sharing a ride to the conference.  The church can help with your registration fee.  

Lots to give thanks for: our choir is now rehearsing on Sunday mornings at 8:30am.  We are hearing from church family members about what motivates them to give to St. James', AND we are planning for our...

Potluck Fish Fry (catfish provided and fried on site) on Sunday, Oct. 23 following the Eucharist.  Do please bring a dish that would be enough to also go towards our Meals on Wheels, which will get filled and get delivered that same Sunday.

See you for our Holy Meal, aka Holy Communion, this Sunday, at 10am.


Friday, October 7, 2011

Ponder Anew What the Almighty Can Do

Dear Family,

The Brotherhood of St. Andrew, our men's group, will be meeting tomorrow at El Corral Lozano on 2nd St. for breakfast at 9am.

Later tomorrow afternoon, Courtney Brown will be leading a come-one-come-all mask making workshop tomorrow in the fellowship hall--Saturday, Oct. 8, 4-6pm.  Please email her directly if you have further questions:


This Sunday, the Rev. Dr. Nathan Jennings will be teaching after Eucharist this Sunday in the media room.  If you miss him this time around, you can catch up with him in Advent, when he will offer us 3 more classes.  More TBA.

Put Oct. 23 on your calendar for St. James'  Sunday, our patron saint's day, and Fish Fry, following the Eucharist.  Pledge cards will go out that day as well, as we step into a season of prayerfully reflecting on our family life at St. James:

What is the BEST that can happen?

Finally, some community info:
Marge Tripp, 352-9898 is seeking volunteers for the Taylor City Wide Cleanup on Sat. Oct. 22, 8am - 3pm.  Murphy Park is the home base for this event.  They will begin by sending out volunteers to help clean up the yards of folks on the Meals on Wheels list.  

[The photo above is of the baptismal font at St. Theresa of Lisieux, Austin]

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Do Not Worry About Your Life

In honor of the upcoming feast day of St. Francis of Assisi, who preached to the birds and tamed a wolf, please join your neighbors this Sat., Oct. 1, 10am-11:30am, at our Blessing of the Animals, in the courtyard of St. James' Church. 
A brief liturgy will start around 10:30am.
There will be goodies and drinks for humans and their pets.

Friday, September 9, 2011

Fall Organ Concert & Blessing of Animals

For your calendars:
  • Sunday, Sept. 25, 4:00pm - our Fall Organ Recital, featuring the talents of our organist, Ms. Helen Wiley, and several other UT organ graduate students.  Music by Mozart, Bach, among others.  Click here for the facebook link.  Tickets $10 at the door, or whatever you can give - all proceeds go to Calvary Episcopal Church, Bastrop.
  • Blessing of the Animals, Saturday, October 1, 10am-noon.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Seek the Lord while He wills to be found

What a busy fall coming up.  Here are a few things on the immediate horizon.  And come join us!
Sunday, Aug. 21 - Blessing of the Backpacks, bring a symbol of your vocation, and come dedicate it to the One who empowers us to live into our vocations.
Sat. Sept. 3, 4-6pm - Craft Night in the fellowship hall
Sun. Sept. 4 - 12:30-3:30 - Safeguarding God's Children training, in the fellowship hall.  If you find yourself around children on Sunday, you need to take this.  That means all of us, essentially.  See Rev. Kelly if interested.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Who says summer is a low-activity season?

This is a glimpse into our Godly Play program, photo taken 2 Sundays ago.  The children are doing their work, following the story of the Tabernacle.  Two more children are at work in the Desert Box, out of range of the photo.

Calling ALL women: your ECW (Episcopal Church Women) will be gathering this Sunday, following the service, to pray, address issues pertinent to our group ministry, and get to know each other a little better.  Sunday, July 31, about 11:30am in the library.

Calling ALL family members: here is a quick, easy way to get your Safeguarding God's Children training in, whether for the first time or to renew every 5 years is to sign up for the 3-hour session at Grace, Georgetown.  It's scheduled for Sat., August 20th from 9:00am - 12:00pm and anyone can register for that by clicking here.  

Did you know that St. James' now has a sexton who is also verger-in-training?  Michael Holder is this man.  What are those odd titles anyway, you say?  Here are some definitions.

A verger is a person within the Church who assists the clergy in the conduct of public worship. It is said that the Verger serves the church in a ministry of welcome and the duties of the Verger vary from parish to parish. Vergers can be full-time or part-time, paid or volunteer. Their duties can be purely ceremonial or include other responsibilities such as parish administration, leadership of the worship committee, sexton, etc. He or she may serve in other capacities throughout the church; such as Sacristan, Acolyte Master, Sexton, Chalice Bearer, Lay Reader, Usher, Protector of the Procession, Doorkeeper, Grave Digger, Master of Ceremonies or anything else that the parish requires. The Office of Verger dates back to the Middle Ages when the Verger was the "Protector of the Procession." He led the Procession into the Church or Cathedral, clearing the way for the Procession and protecting it from vagabonds and animals that tried to attack it. Today, in many parishes and cathedrals you will see a Verger ceremonially leading the Procession. The Verger wears a gown and carries a Virge (staff of Office) to help clear the way, and point the way for the procession (definition from this site).

sexton is a church, congregation or synagogue officer charged with the maintenance of its buildings and/or the surrounding graveyard. In smaller places of worship, this office is often combined with that of verger. In larger buildings, such as cathedrals, a team of sextons may be employed.

The word "Sexton" and "sacristan" both derive from the Medieval Latin word sacristanus meaning "custodian of sacred objects". "Sexton" represents the popular development of the word, via the Old French "Segrestein", from Latin Sacristanus "Sacristan" (From Wikipedia).

Michael will be reporting to the Bishop's Committee as regards the maintenance needs of the church buildings.  Thank you, Michael.  

Praise God from whom all blessings flow.

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Let Our God Arise

O Christ God, You have ascended in Glory,
Granting joy to Your disciples by the promise of the Holy Spirit.
Through the blessing they were assured
That You are the Son of God,
The Redeemer of the world!
-an ancient hymn for Ascension Day

Join us for Holy Eucharist this Thursday, Ascension Day,
June 2, at 7:00pm.  And celebrate with the Church how
Christ, in reuniting with His Father in heaven, united
heaven to earth.
We especially welcome the church families of
St. Thomas', Rockdale, and St. Paul's, Pflugerville.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Annual Rummage Sale & Brisket

Saturday, May 28 - starting at 8:00 AM
Come visit us, browse, buy a hidden gem, snag a deal, chat, eat, and get to know your neighbors on 7th and Davis...
Gently used children's and adult clothes/shoes, cooking Items, big screen TVs, furniture, electronics, LPs, books, lots of kitchen items, toys, etc.
Authentic Kansas City style barbecue on Sale for $5 a plate (Brisket, Beans, Coleslaw, Pickles, and Bread),
Brisket by the Pound at $10.

Friday, May 13, 2011

Someone New This Sunday

Dear Friends in Christ,

Want to hear someone NEW from the pulpit?  This Sunday, Good Shepherd Sunday, is your chance!!  The Rev. Ben Long, associate priest at St. James', Austin, will preside and preach.  Their rector is also new, along with a brand new church sanctuary.  It's quite a place.  Check it out. 

Father Ben grew up in Mexico and is fluent (also preaches) in Spanish.  (He won't do that Sunday.)  His father is also an Episcopal priest and still serves in Mexico. Father Ben and his wife, Amy, live in Austin.

Further dates to remember:

1. Our Annual Garage Sale & Brisket Lunch rapidly approaches - Sat., May 28, 8am thru lunch.  Let Rev. Kelly know if you'd like to drop things off before Sunday, May 22.  From that Sunday on, you can bring your items by the church.  Ask friends, neighbors if they would like to donate any furniture, baby items, kitchenware, etc.  

The sign up list needs YOUR name on it!  This is such a good ministry for meeting the community and letting folks know who we are at St. James'.  So please prioritize this date, and speaking of Spanish, if anyone can speak it, it would be so helpful to have you around that day.  We need people to make and post lawn signs, post on listserves, assist at the tables for 2 hr slots, and set up / take down.

2. Ascension Day Eucharist, Thursday, June 2, 7:00pm.  One of the church's "big 7" principal feasts.  We will be joined by respective vicars and church families from St. Thomas', Rockdale, and St. Paul's, Pflugerville!

3. Sat., June 4 - Family Craft Night, 4-6pm.  Cake/cookie decorating.  Let Rev. Kelly know if you are interested.  

4. Bishop Payne's visit with Receptions and Reaffirmations - Pentecost Sunday, June 12.  If you would like to be reaffirmed in your faith, or even wonder what that means, see Rev. Kelly.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

My Soul Magnifies the Lord

As Mothers' Day approaches, join our church family for another first... 
Family Craft Night!  
When: This Saturday, May 7, 4:00-6:00pm
What:  We're making awesome greeting / Mothers' Day cards--NOT your average store-bought type either.  Come learn from a master.  
For whom: everyone.  Family friendly.
Food: Mac n cheese supper
How much: freewill offering
Where: in the church fellowship hall, next to the church

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Organ Recital - Friday, April 29, 7pm

Join us for the first annual Spring Organ Recital at St. James' Episcopal Church!  

You think THIS pipe organ is beautiful...come check ours out.

Works by Bach, Buxtehude, Howells, Mendelssohn, and others will be performed by Alvez Barkoskie IV, Aaron Garcia, Jordan Peek, and Helen Wiley. Trumpeter Christopher Heldt joins us to perform "The Prayer of St. Gregory".

Tickets are $10 or donation. Half the proceeds will support the new choir program at St. James', and the other half goes to the performers. Tickets will be available at the door. For advance tickets, contact Philip Jones or Helen Wiley.

There will be a reception following the program. Hope to see you there!

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

The Blood of Christ, the Cup of Salvation

I received from the Lord what I also handed on to you. - St. Paul in 1 Cor. 11

Friends, come participate in what has been handed down to us:
Holy Week 2011
  • April 21, Maundy Thursday – 7pm Holy Eucharist, foot washing, Stripping of the Altar.  Followed by Prayer Vigil in fellowship hall. Nursery care available.
  • April 22, Good Friday – 6pm Stations of the Cross; 7pm Solemn Collects - a joint service with our brothers and sisters in Christ at United Christian Church, Taylor.  The service will be held at St. James'. Nursery care available.
  • April 23 (Sat.) Holy Saturday – 10am, followed by decorating for Easter.
Easter Sunday, Apr. 24 - Holy Eucharist with Baptisms, followed by celebration of our newest church members, and egg hunt.  Nursery care available.

We anticipate a full house on Sunday. Come early!

Upcoming events: St. James' Organ Recital, Friday, April 29, 7:00pm.  Tickets are $10 or goodwill offering.
Family Night, Sat., May 7, 4-6pm.  Fellowship hall. Come make Mothers' Day cards.  Supper included.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011


Dear Friends,

Join us on Wednesday nights, March 16-April 13, 7:00pm-8:30pm, for opportunities to reflect on the Christian journey.

The facilitators will be using the book, A Long Obedience in the Same Direction, by Eugene Peterson, translator of The Message.  He takes a look at each of the Songs of Ascents, the psalms numbering 120-134, which are those believed to be the psalms sung as pilgrims went up to Jerusalem for each of the three main festivals.

You do not need the book, but a Bible would be nice to have alongside.

We start with a brief compline service, then share a simple supper of soup and bread (provided by our church members), and then have the program.  We finish promptly at 8:30pm.

With many thanks to two guest facilitators: the Rev. Parker Jameson (March 23), from St. Luke's on the Lake; and the Rev. Jerry Sneary (April 6).

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Shrove Tuesday

Dear Friends,
You are invited to join us for a feast of pancakes and bacon, as we say goodbye to an "ordinary" season, and welcome in the lean season of Lent:

7:00pm, March 8 - in the St. James' Fellowship Hall
No need to bring anything but an empty tummy.

Ash Wednesday is tomorrow, March 9.
Holy Eucharist with Imposition of Ashes will be at 7:00pm in the church.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Feast of the Epiphany

Come join us for the Feast that bids farewell to the Christmas season, and greets the one we have come to call the Epiphany season.

Candlelit Holy Eucharist 7:00pm, Wednesday, January 5, 2011