Greening of the Sanctuary and Christmas flower dedications

posted in: Advent | 0

Advent makes innkeepers out of all of us, asking each of us to make room for the arrival of the Christ Child.  On Sunday, December 22, 2019 following the 10:30 a.m. service, the flower guild will be GREENING the Sanctuary, and they would LOVE your help!  If you can, bring a pair of gardening gloves as the sap can be sticky.  Everyone can help: tall people are needed to hang boughs up high, but so are eyes below to guide them.  Strong hands are needed to carry heavy flowers, and so are gentle hands to carefully arrange them.  

Use the Christmas Flower Dedications form to send in your Christmas flower dedications.  I’m asking that these be turned in by Monday, December 9, 2019 by placing in the collection plate, dropping off at the Parish office, sending in by mail, or sending me an email.  Forms will be in this Sunday’s leaflet, and also by the name tags.

Holly and ivy, along with pine, and fir are called evergreens because they never change color. They are ever-green, ever-alive, even in the midst of winter. Thus they can well symbolize the unchanging nature of our God.  This year, as you see the splendor of a Christmas tree or the greens around St Thomas’s, remember that it is a continuing witness to everlasting life as offered to us in Christ Jesus – and that far from a commercial enterprise, it speaks a deeply spiritual message . . . “O Christmas tree, O Christmas Tree, thy leaves are so unchanging” — Just like God’s love.  

Kind Regards,
Cana Hartman

Carpenter’s Helper news for week of December 1, 2019

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As November comes to a close, we enter into what can be the busiest time of the year. Before your calendar fills up, please take the time to consider, “What activities and traditions help me build positive memories, centered on Christ.”  You will see below that there are many opportunities here, at St. Thomas’s, to find those moments this Advent. Thank you to all who are working hard behind the scenes to make these special moments happen!

  • On Sunday evenings  December 1, 8, and 15 at 6 p.m,: Advent Evening Prayers will be offered. Even if you cannot make it to church to pray in the evenings, look for electronic versions, as well as booklets that you can take home.
  •  Friday, December 6, 2019: Poets’ Corner 
  •  Friday and Saturday December 6-7, 2019: St Thomas’s Annual Bazaar 
  •  Saturday, December 7, 2019 at 10 a.m.: Altar Guild In-Service  
  • December 8, at 9:15 a.m.: Novel Theology NOW MEETING IN THE CLASSROOM
  • December 15, 2019 from 12-2 p.m.: Artist and teacher Dorothy Thayne will speak about creating iconography
  • Wednesday, December 18, 2019 at 6 p.m.: Ladies’ Night Out at Skipjack
  • December 22, 2019 at 5:30 p.m.: Children’s Christmas Pageant  

Carpenter’s Helper link:

Kind Regards,
Cana Hartman

Children’s Ministries news for December 1, 2019

posted in: Children's Ministries | 0

On Sunday, December 1 2019, the First Sunday of Advent, Sunday School will begin with Sunday Breakfast Club in the Great Hall classroom at 9:30 a.m. Thank you to the Houghtons for hosting this week. Don’t forget to sign up for your turn by using this link:
The education and worship part of our children’s program will begin at 9:45 a.m. in the Undercroft. If you can, please join us and/or have your children join us as we begin the journey leading us to mystery of Christmas in the PreK-K classroom as we begin our celebration of Advent by exploring the theme of waiting in grades 1-6. 

A few additional bits of news:

  • This week, we will begin planning parts and service roles for the annual Children’s Pageant which will be part pageant/part prayer service as typically happens. Please try to have your children in attendance as much as possible during the month of December as this makes it easier for the grown-ups and the children.
  • On Saturday, December 7, 2019, as part of the St. Thomas’s Annual Bazaar, I will be hosting a fundraiser Pancake Breakfast Buffet. The buffet will include pancake bar, sausage, eggs, fruit, and drinks. Ticket prices at the door will be $5 per adult/older child and $3 per child under 10, 2 years and younger are free.  Please come if you can to enjoy good food and fellowship with family and friends and then stay to do some shopping at the bazaar!
  • All of St Thomas’s has  been invited to attend Faith and Family Day at the UD Basketball game on January 12, 2020. CREW, our youth group, will be attending as our meeting that day. Please let me know as soon as you can if you plan to attend as well. Advance ticket prices will be depend on the size of our group.

I look forward to seeing you all soon!
Blessings,Belinda Young-Payne, Director of Children’s Ministries

Youth CREW news for December 1, 2019

posted in: CREW | 0

Hi Everyone,

Our next Youth CREW (“Christians Ready, Equipped, and Willing”) meeting will be Sunday, December 1, at noon. We will be having a potluck post-Thansgiving lunch for all CREW members (which is anyone who are able to attend. Turkey will be provided. Each youth/family is asked to bring a side dish or dessert to share. If anyone else cares to attend, this would be a great time to meet our group members if you haven’t already. just let Kelly or I know so we can plan for seating and plates.

A few other things:

  • Please return any registration forms you have not returned.
  • Please remember friends are invited to all CREW activities.
  • All of St Thomas’s has  been invited to attend Faith and Family Day at the UD Basketball game on January 12, 2020. CREW will be attending as our meeting that day. Friends and family are invited to attend as well.  Please let me know as soon as you can if you plan to attend as well. Advance ticket prices will be depend on the size of our group.


Belinda Young-Payne

Adult Education on Sunday, December 1, 2019

posted in: Adult Education | 0

Dear Friends,
        In adult education tomorrow, we will begin reading and talking about an important new book, Robin DiAngelo’s White Fragility. Why It’s so Hard for White People to Talk about Racism, a dense and meaty short book about something that involves us all. WWJS (What would Jesus say)? “Read it, and weep!” We gather in the parlor at 9:15 a.m., but latecomers are always, always welcome. At 6 p.m. tomorrow evening, we will begin a new, regular prayer service, which hopefully will become a regular service on Sunday evenings (and perhaps at other times as well). We all have people and causes to pray for, and it is good, very good, to develop the regular habit of praying for them. We rarely know whether our prayers seem to do “any good” for others; but what has been long known and appreciated is that the act of regular prayer for others does change us, and always for the better.  Think about that–and act on it.
Pax,Larry Duggan

Carpenter’s Helper newsletter for November 10, 2019

posted in: News | 0

Happy Friday everyone!  Who’s excited for the hayride and bonfire tomorrow night? Please see this week’s Carpenter’s Helper newsletter.  We continue to be lively, engaged, and busy in a good way.  Here are just a few reminders:

  • Heeey- the hayride and bonfire at Milburn Orchards is tomorrow night!  Please arrive at 5:30 p.m.; hayride leaves promptly at 6 p.m.
  • Novel Theology is having a guest author this Sunday.  They will meet in the classroom (previously in the business office, but concerned about limited space).  Come and meet Michele Chynoweth, even if you haven’t read the book yet, 9:15 a.m.
  • This is the last week for the Anglican Way.  “Normal” adult education will pick up next week in the Parlor.
  • Mark Burchess will be presenting this Sunday at both the 8 and 10:30 a.m. services.  He will be sharing his #BrownsvilleLove 💟 experience.
  • Creation Care has a great display in the great hall, and we want YOU to be a part of it.  I will be looking for volunteers to strike a pose for the earth.  The get together Home Energy Forum is Wednesday at 10 a.m. – coffee, tea, and conversation about creation care.
  • CREW will be running a winter clothes drive starting Sunday.  There will be a collection box in the great hall.  Gently used coats, scarves, and gloves, and new hats and socks are requested. 
  • Next Saturday, 11/16 at 4 p.m. in the Nave, poet Claire McCabe will be sharing some of her favorites as a continuation of the Poets’ Corner Series.
  • Wow- that is a lot, and I know there is more.  If you want to see your event or note here, or on any form of communication, please let me know.  We are a VIBRANT parish!

See past Carpenter’s Helper newsletters and announcements.

Kind Regards,
Cana Hartman / Parish Administrator

Pledge cards reminder

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This is a reminder that your pledge cards are due.  If you have not yet, please turn them in as soon as you can> The Vestry will be working on the budget this week and the more complete the picture is, the better they can be great stewards of these gifts. The budget is based on pledge amounts,

Where Grace happens, Generosity happens.  Thank you for your generosity.

#BrownsvilleLove this Sunday

posted in: Outreach | 0

This Sunday, Mark Burchess will be sharing his mission trip experience at the border in Brownsville, Texas with us.  He will be sharing at the 8 and 10:30 a.m. services with a slide show.  What questions do you have?  Come hear about how we can continue to support humanitarian efforts and live Matthew 25:35.

Faith and family day at UD Football on Nov. 16, 2019

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Hello Everyone,I received an invitation this fall to Faith and Family Day UD Football games. Kelly Thompkins and I have identified Nov. 16, 2019, as the day we are able to host a St. Thomas’s Group. We would get discounted tickets ($15-$28 each, I predict), our name on the board, and the youth group would get an opportunity to be on the field with the players. If you are interested in going to the game against Stony Brook on Nov. 16, let me know. If we can get a large enough group together, I”ll arrange the outing.


Belinda Young-Payne

Annual Hayride and Bonfire on Nov. 9, 2019

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Our annual Hayride and Bonfire!

November 9, 2019

Wagons will leave at 6:00 p.m. Please try to arrive by 5:30 p.m.

$15 per adult and $8 per child, 5 and under are free!

There is a sign up sheet hung on the door in the lobby, please let us know if you plan to come! If you decide at the last minute to come, come on! Just bring your payment with you! We will provide the hot dogs, cider, water and S’more fixins.

Location: Milburn Orchards, 1495 Appleton Rd, Elkton, MD 21921

Use the special parking lot designated for Bonfires, NOT the farm market parking lot.This is where your group will gather, the tractor driver will pick you up and drop you off at the end of the evening. The FarmYard is off limits after dark so it is extremely important to use the correct parking area. For a printable map and directions to Milburn Orchards, please visit

Contact Kelly Tompkins with any questions.