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Reflections Newsletter: Summer 2016

July 1, 2016
K. Henry
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St. David's Newsletter

Summer 2016 Issue

The following news items are in this issue, just click on an item title to view it.
At the end of each news item is a
'back to beginning' phrase, just click on that
phrase and you will return to the beginning of the newsletter.

News List:
- Liturgy Schedule: July 2016
- Monthly Calendar: July 2016
- Meet our Parish Administrator: Takaya Sweeny
- From The Rector
- Vestry Update
- Birthdays
- Picture Page
- Just Wondering - Summer Drives and Episcopal Churches
- Did You Know

 Meet our Parish Administrator: Takaya Sweeny 

Takaya Sweeney is St. David’s new parish administrator.  Takaya started with us in late February.  She has an extensive background as an office coordinator and a facility manager and has held other administrative positions.  She is a Wayne State graduate with a degree in Political Science.

Takaya has been happily married to her husband, Howard, for nine and a half years.  They live with their Pomeranian dog named “Teddy Bear.”  Her first impressions of St. David’s have been very positive.

“Everyone is really nice,” Takaya said.  “Everybody has been very welcoming.”

Parishioners may have noticed the church office looking a little cleaner and more organized than before.  Takaya admits that she is a self-proclaimed “germ-a-holic.”  She likes everything in the office to be clean and sanitized.  In addition to getting to know our parishioners, Takaya admitted that she experiences Fellowship at home.

“We get together and have a “conference” as a family,” Takaya said.  “We share what we have learned and what others have experienced in their daily lives.”  At St. David’s, she believes that the online courses that we offer with the Church Next program are a good thing.

In her spare time, Takaya likes to work out, but is also into comfort activities such as eating health food, massages, and just lounging around.  She likes to travel and is considering an overseas excursion next year. 

We welcome Takaya Sweeney to St. David’s.

~ J. Hawkes

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 From the Rector 

Your Gift of Generosity

As you probably know, your parish leadership is awestruck by your Capital Campaign generosity.
When our stewardship consultant told us that our parish was likely to receive pledges for a three year refurbishing project of $225,0000- $$250,000, you gave.

When our stewardship consultant told us we would likely receive 54 pledges, you gave.

Even knowing we’ve never planned or carried out a plan as ambitious and sacrificial as this, nor were we able to provide as many details as we all would have liked, you gave.

And you gave.

And you gave.

To date, we have received $366,000 from 68 pledges, and is certainly more on the way. Add this to a previous gift of around $100,000 and we have already amassed a formidable sum. Well done, church.

What’s more, many of you have already started paying on these pledges, making it easier for us to avoid bridge loans – funds that we borrow to cover the lag time between pledges and payments. This is what First Fruits Sundays are about on July 3 and 10. Please join us in bringing whatever ‘first fruits’ you’d like to contribute to the 8a and 10a services on these days.

From here, your leadership will work to solicit funds from various sources, including the diocese, private foundations, and loans. Once we have arrived at a final number we will begin the work of design then construction. Our Capital Campaign Committee is now being replaced by a Building Committee and your leadership is committed to transparency and open communication all along the way. Yes, this is one of many milestones we’ll pass, but what a milestone it is.

So let us take a moment to savor it. Not to simply pat ourselves on the back, but to realize that our generosity, while surely from us, is really from Jesus in us, who has gifted our faith family with His charitable and big-hearted spirit.

May this milestone be our own gift to Jesus, whose sacrifice we are attempting to model, for the good of His work in the world.

Well done church, well done!


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 Vestry Report 

Vestry Highlights

The June 14, 2016, meeting of the St. David’s Vestry was called to order at 7:00 p.m. with prayer and reflection led by Father Chris, and followed by approval of the May 10, 2016 Vestry meeting minutes.

Father Chris provided a Rector’s report that included an update on the Capital Campaign, indicating that as of the date of the Vestry meeting $256,476 had been pledged.  Discussion was also held regarding the appointment of a Building Committee that would be responsible for oversight of the facility planning process, as well as completion of funding applications to the Diocese and various Foundations that provide financial support to parishes like St. David’s.  Father Chris also reported on confirmations, baptisms, and funerals performed during the previous month.

The Property Commission reported on a number minor repairs and improvements made during the past month, including the need for backflow preventers to be checked.  The Hammer and Nail Club was commended for it hard work to keep the church in good working order.

The Administration Commission reported on its initial research regarding resources for the retention, archival, or destruction of church records.  More information will be provided on this topic by the Commission over the next few months.

The Finance Commission reviewed the May financial reports, noting that finances were trending well and in accordance with the budget.  The 2014 and 2015 audits of the church’s financial records were also reviewed, both of which included clean opinions.  The Commission also reported that it agreed Scrip sales revenue should be divided in a way that would permit 25% to go to the Capital Campaign.  

Under Old Business, it was decided the Visioning Topic in July would be to meet the Building Committee that is scheduled to be appointed.  General discussion was also held about Visioning topics from September through the end of the calendar year, including an update on the Haiti mission trip and Diocese presentations on church demographics and the racial reconciliation process.

This month’s Visioning Topic was led by Greg McGarvey of Horizons, our Capital Campaign consultant.  He answered many questions of the Vestry and provided an overview of what to expect during the remainder of the Campaign. The Vestry found his input to be extremely helpful.

The next meeting of the Vestry is Tuesday, July 12, 2016.  There will be no Vestry meeting in August.
The meeting was adjourned with prayer at 8:45 p.m.  

~ Gary Meier, Sr Warden 

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 July Birthdays 

Amanze, Charles
Amanze, Jovita
Babcock, Elsie
Collins, Bill
Davis, Ethan
Eudier, Nicholas
Floyd, Joyce
Glenn, Sitella
Gordon, Ken
Hammer, Stancia
Hoekwater, Phil

Ivinson, Thomas
Johnson, Robert
Litwinowicz, John
Losey, Clara Beth
Mackinder, Lee
Masek, Bob
Penn, Donna
Reid, Logan Ernest
Sullivan, Jenny
Thompson, Ann

 August Birthdays 

Atfield, Wayne
Bair, Mary Margaret
Buday, Edna
Buday, Eugene
Cloutier, James
Cooper, Betty Ann
Edwin, Sean
Greening, Charles
Henry, Kwame
Hoekwater, Joshua

Kenning, Jim
Kenning, Kitty
Lacy, Frankie
Litwinowicz, Luke
Parks, Colin
Parks, Danielle
Ploch, Katie
Sands, Ray
Taylor, Linda
Yaw, James Christopher

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 Picture Page 

Even with the extreme heat, our Berkley Art Bash tent was a hit.  We passed out lots of water, bookmarks, and info about the 5K/10K run.

We got lots of questions about St. David's and donations for SOS.

Fr. Chris sometimes likes to involve the parish in his sermons.  Here we have the penitent and the Pharisee.

George thanks the choir for a good season of songs of worship.  We all praise God for all of their work to make our service spiritually uplifting through music.

Ready for the Parish Picnic!  Let's have some lemonade first...

...and some delicious food.

Then it's outside to play in the bounce house/slide.

It was great fun as these two will tell you.

Congratulations to our graduates!

Vacation Bible School was great fun, too.  Here the children listen to a Bible story about creation.  Each day the children gathered on the Story Deck to hear another story.

Skipper (Fr. Chris) surf boards up to the Surf Shack to talk to Snappy the Crab.

The children had class time to learn more about God's message...

...and they were all eager to participate.

Friendly faces of St. David's. The broken arm occurred during soccer try-outs, but she made the team!

More friendly faces.


~ J & L Sackett

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 Just Wondering - Summer Drives and Episcopal Churches  

Summer Drives and Episcopal Churches 

Michiganders, more than people of any other state, enjoy, and vacation in Michigan.  So if you are one of those people, or even if setting out to explore Michigan for the first time, perhaps you might want to visit some Episcopal churches along the way, some of which are on the National Registry of Historic Places.

If you’ve not visited our Cathedral, this is a good place to begin the journey. Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, this Gothic structure with its two-storied tower is located on Woodward in Detroit, flanked on one side by a Presbyterian church, and on the other by a Methodist church.

Trinity Episcopal in Monroe was established in 1831.  Parishioners still worship in the beautiful stone building erected in 1868, which retains much if its original furnishings and character.

St John’s Episcopal Church, in Ionia was founded in 1841. The congregation built the first church building in the city of Ionia. The original church, now the parish house, claims to be the oldest Episcopal building in the state of Michigan. The present church was consecrated in 1884.

St. Stephen’s Episcopal Church in Hamburg claims to be the oldest operating church in the State. The parish was organized in 1844 and construction of the church began soon afterward. The clean, delicate lines of the church and the interesting tower make it one of the State’s most intriguing churches.

Trinity Church in Niles is the oldest parish in the Diocese of Western Michigan and the oldest existing church structure in Niles.  At one service in 1876, 308 persons were presented for confirmation.

St. Thomas Episcopal Church in Trenton is the 13th oldest Episcopal parish in the Diocese of Michigan and the oldest denomination in Trenton. It was formed in 1836 but is listed as 1843 when the church was built.

St. Gregory’s Abbey in Three Rivers was organized in 1939 and is the oldest monastic community in the Episcopal Church following the Rule of St. Benedict. They have just completed their building project which included their first bell tower. St Gregory’s Abbey welcomes guests who want to visit for a time in order to share in the life of worship and recollection. They ask only that each guest be willing and able to help preserve the monastic environment. The normal length of a visit is from two days to one week.  

Trinity Episcopal Church on Mackinac Island is one of several Episcopal Churches in the Eastern Region of the Diocese of Northern Michigan. Trinity services on Mackinac Island date from 1837, when a bishop preached in the Mission Church. For many years the congregation met in the Post Chapel at Fort Mackinac and in the Court House. In 1873, a parish was organized and in 1882 this church building was constructed. Its furnishings include an altar of hand-carved walnut and two chancel chairs made by soldiers at the fort.” (Michigan Historic Marker)

Trinity Church in Bay City:   in 1885, Phillips C. Ploeter, a local architect, was chosen to design the present Gothic style church building. The cornerstone was laid that year with construction being completed in 1887. The construction and furnishing total $70,000.00. It took 12 years for the new building to be consecrated. The large debt and the financial panic of 1893 was cause for the long delay. It was finally consecrated on December 16, 1899.

Christ Church Cranbrook in Bloomfield Hills is rich in architectural detail, including work by woodcarver John Kirchmayer and silversmith Arthur Nevill, stained glass designs by G. Owen Bonawit, sculptures of the “Dawn Men” on the exterior buttresses by Lee Lawrie, and the large fresco at the front of the church by Katherine McEwen.  The church was developed with meticulous care and aesthetic attention.  Christ Church was consecrated on September 29, 1928.

These are just a few of the Episcopal Churches throughout our state that might prompt a nice summer drive.   Go and visit them and enjoy their history and unique architecture and design.

I wish you all a very blessed summer and good traveling on the roads to Episcopal Churches. See you in the fall.

 ~ M. M. Bair

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 Did You Know 

Jim and Kitty Kenning were thrilled to attend their daughter Sarah's graduation from a five-year surgery residency in Grand Rapids this past month. Her sister and grandparents were also in attendance.  Sarah now goes on to complete a one-year fellowship at the University of Michigan in Surgical Critical Care.  

Celebrations continued the following day at brunch when guests heard of Sarah’s engagement to Ry Charters. “It was quite the weekend and we are glad to be adding another ‘son’ to the family,” exclaimed Kitty.

Congratulations to Sarah on her graduation and to the happy couple on their engagement!

We welcome your news about family trips, reunions, achievements, and celebrations.
Please submit your items to Edna Buday at by the 15th of the month.

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