November 2016

Dear St. Paul’s Family,

We have a wonderful community that steps forward when there is a need, serving and striving to be Christians formed in love. We are continually inspiring, training and supporting new leaders to further enrich ministries of compassion.

Our impact expands beyond the walls of our own church to help others in need:

  •  Each year, at least 4,800 individual meals go out of our Sherrill Hall kitchen, serving Christ among us.
  • With Pine Street Inn, Miracle Kitchen, MetroWest Family Promise and BSAFE, our new common spaces are being well used for ministry.
  • The joy on a Thursday evening around Open Door is palpable.
  • Singing, community, feeding, connections and care are all happening weekly.

We are having an impact within our community:

  •  We have good friendships with each other and interfaith communities when we need support,
  • Seventeen youth are going on retreat this weekend for the Middle School Retreat.
  • Tears are met with love as laying on of hands is offered each Sunday morning. 
  • Seven leaders are being trained for spirituality and wellness support; and centering prayer happens weekly.
  • A Mom’s Group is reforming; over 50 women go on retreat together annually.

Looking even further abroad, our sister parish and school in Haiti is an employer of teachers and a place for 900 young people to become educated adults. Our support over the years totals well over $300,000 for buildings and teachers’ salaries, and crisis aid when needed.

We have so much to be thankful for as we approach this season of thanksgiving. As we do so, we must always remember that it is you who are the heroes of this story. You support the staff and ministries that support all of us. Your contributions bolster all the ways we are learning to love. WE CANNOT DO IT WITHOUT YOU!

We can either keep ministry at the same level or move ministry forward depending upon your contribution. If you have never pledged before, will you consider committing to even a small amount for 2017? If you are a regular donor, will you consider a 10-20 percent increase to strengthen all of our ministries? Education, training, music, our worship space, and ministry development all need increased financial support to increase the effectiveness and impact of our shared ministry.

Every gift counts, and the vestry and finance committee will use your pledges to shape our budget for 2017. Our fall drive only lasts until December 11, so please return the enclosed card as soon as you can. If you prefer to make your commitment online, simply go to: http://www.stpaulsnatick.org/2017pledge

Thank you for your continued support of St. Paul’s ministries of love.

In Christ,

Jon Strand, Rector

 


Some stories and voices from our life together:

Not so long ago, a parishioner who had received care from the St. Paul’s community said with tears in her eyes, “I never knew I deserved to be loved, and now I know that I am loved.” 

One of our youth, after our mission trip to New Orleans this summer, stated, “I grew in my faith through this time.” So many of our children, after our engaging Harry Potter Vacation Bible School, glowed with gratitude. These growth moments are extraordinary, yet they are also a regular part of our story and life together.

Mike Skatrud says, “I make St. Paul’s a priority in giving because everything I have comes from God, and I am grateful.”

Barb Subber says, “My faith is strengthened by St. Paul’s because of the amazing love shown by this congregation; in welcoming outsiders the people in this community have shown themselves to be truly children of God.”

We have been able to respond directly to the crisis in Haiti after Hurricane Matthew, through our friendships with clergy and congregational leaders and through our shared support of Episcopal Relief and Development.

After the election, as many were struggling, there was time to share feelings and to share our hope going forward as 45 people reached out in support of one another in either conversation or prayer. We stand in love for every person in this time.

We are very involved in supporting our Interfaith congregations, Muslim congregations, Natick Schools, and the LGBTQ community, to reassure them of mutual support in an anxious time for our country.