Welcome as our parish journeys BACK toward our “new normal.”  Back from the days of totally virtual church, from Morning Prayer online every Sunday, and from the occasional drive-by communion to-go. With caution, care, and increasing vaccinations, we revived our spirits at in-person (tent revival!) services beginning in Holy Week.  Slowly, we have expanded to include (masked) singing and al fresco coffee hours, and this fall, blessedly, we are back in the Sanctuary with the choir and the organ leading us in hymns of praise!  No, we’re not back to “normal” yet – still masked, socially distanced, wine-less, and waving our wishes for “Peace be with you” – but let’s celebrate how far we’ve come.  

Through it all, St. Clare’s has remained faithful.  Under the Reverend Maryjane’s amazing leadership, congregants stepped up to Worship with Joy (participating in worship services as lectors, preachers, officiants, musicians and lay Eucharistic visitors), Grow in Faith (leading and attending Adult, Children and Youth Faith Formation classes) and Act for Justice (completing Sacred Ground’s program and launching the new Equity, Education and Action Committee). However and wherever we worship, the commitment to St. Clare’s and the community holds firm, and the financial support for the church has remained strong. Outreach drives for backpacks for Ozone House, gift cards for the JFS refugee resettlement, and stimulus check donations were enthusiastically answered. You continue to demonstrate that at St. Clare’s, Stewardship is not just a Fall pledge drive phenomenon! 

Through it all, St. Clare’s has remained patient.  We waited and prayed as the Profile Committee assessed our CAT surveys and Holy Conversations to craft a narrative capturing how St. Clare’s sees itself and what it aspires to become.  We waited and prayed while the Search Committee sifted through applications, researched references and interviewed candidates to find a “faithful pastor who will care for [God’s] people and equip us for our ministries.”   

Thankfully, our prayers have been answered with the calling of the Rev. Anne Clarke to be our next Rector.  As we await her arrival to see what the FUTURE holds for St. Clare’s, let us celebrate that she comes in Advent, the season of anticipation! What new roads will Anne travel with us and how will she utilize her gifts to help us share the Good News of God’s kingdom on earth?  What resources will she have at her disposal to revitalize old and launch new programs?  Here’s where your pledge comes in…  

Please pledge with your heart so we can, as a Beloved Community, support our new Rector and our excellent staff as we return to in-person church programming, and continue to modify our building’s HVAC system to improve the indoor air quality through better circulation and filter efficiency.  Together, our pledges ensure a stable foundation that allows us to live into our mission as a faith community. 

Please click here or use the link at www.saintclareschurch.org/give to electronically record your pledge for 2022 by Sunday, November 28.  Paper pledge cards are available at church or by contacting the office at office@saintclareschurch.org or leaving a message with your address at 734-662-2449. 

Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay