7:30 AM Morning Prayer
8:00 AM Holy Eucharist Rite I
10:00 AM Holy Eucharist Rite II
11:00 AM Healing Service & Holy Eucharist with interactive Scripture Conversation
Monday through Friday
7:00 AM Morning Prayer in the Chapel
This Sunday is The Twenty-First Sunday after Pentecost. The liturgical color is green.
Godly Play, Rite 13 One and Two, and J2A Christian Formation classes will assemble at the altar steps immediately after the reading of the Gospel at the 10 AM Service. These students will rejoin the Congregation at Communion. Thank you!Childcare begins at 9:45 a.m. in the nursery.
I Want to Help
Use the Donate button (above) to make donations to Christ Church to help us in our ministries to the community. You can also use this button to pay for tickets to various events or to make your weekly pledge payments. Yes, that's right--you can now keep up your pledge amount without even leaving the comfort of your home!
Sunday, October 14:
Christine Gross, Roxanne Ingoe, Mary Larimer
|8am Server||Victor Stanwick|
|8am Lectors||Danforth Prince|
|Ushers||Ned Rogers, Hueldine Webb|
|Counters||Mark Gherzo, Kathy & Arnold Galvez|
|Coffee Hour Host||Chili Cook-Off|
Reflections From the Rector
NOTHING GOES WITHOUT SAYING
How often do we think to ourselves things like, "She knows I love her - it goes without saying" or "He knows how much I appreciate all his hard work - it goes without saying"? The truth is, words can be a powerful affirmation, and the absence of the right words can leave a void that really hurts. The truth is, very little goes without saying, and the important things should NEVER go without saying. There are things we know, but sometimes we need to hear them loud and clear.
During the 10:00 am service on Sunday, November 4th, we will celebrate an important rite of passage with our Rite-13 (Two) class. The class is named Rite-13 after the special liturgy we will celebrate with them on this day. In some respects, this is a new way of saying to our young people things we have meant to convey all along - things like: "We stand with you as you make your way on the journey; we're here if you need us; we think you are terrific; we love you." We often assume that our teens feel appreciated and accepted as a vital part of our parish, but adolescence can be such a time of uncertainty that some things just can't be said often enough.
One of the unique aspects of the Journey to Adulthood program is that it seeks to provide rites of passage that are often lacking in our culture. We help define points along the path to adulthood that tell our young people they are making progress; they are growing; they are becoming adults. Rite-13 is the liturgical cornerstone that lays the foundation for the entire congregation of Christ Church to rise up and in one mighty voice tell our young people, "You matter to us. Your lives are of inestimable value. The journey you are now embarking on is significant." It is a way that we fulfill our baptismal covenant of "seeking and serving Christ in all persons."
The Rite-13 Liturgy is a rite of passage that recognizes the gift that God bestows upon each one of us: the gift of manhood or womanhood. This is a free gift that we cannot earn and need not prove. This gift is the essence of who we are. The same energy that pushes us through adolescence gives us the power to change the world. As these young people grow and mature, their knowledge and skills will increase, but the core of who they are remains the same.
Here is a priceless opportunity for us to affirm all that is good in the young people who live and grow around us and to recognize them as young men and women in our midst. Don't miss this incredible chance to say out loud in a very powerful way what we have meant to say to them all along. Remember, NOTHING GOES WITHOUT SAYING!!
Adapted from Rite 13 curriculum, Example contributed by Tracey Herzer, 11/99
The Rev. Trevor R. Babb+
Linda & Hal Reiersen Funeral Service, Christ Church, 8 October 2018
If, as Queen Elizabeth said, grief is the price we pay for love, then today is a very expensive day. We are here to grieve, and our grief is great.
Linda and Hal had a great gift for friendship, so many, many people are paying the price for their love today. Linda and Hal were hospitable; we had countless fun evenings at their house. And Linda and Hal were sociable; they were at most of the parties and gatherings we went to.
A double funeral is almost unheard of, unless there has been a natural disaster or a mass shooting. The sad chain of events that has brought us to this day is nearly unbelievable. The last months have been, I'm sure, a shocking ordeal for Kristin and David. Losing one parent is difficult enough; saying goodbye to both at the same time demands a very great deal.
Linda and Hal were a great match and had a very happy marriage. They had both been briefly married before, and I always thought of them as the perfect example of a successful second marriage when people, maybe sadder and certainly wiser, can make better decisions. Linda was voluble quicksilver; Hal was a taciturn, steadfast Norwegian through and through. But they fit together like a well-designed jigsaw puzzle.
The only upside to today is that we can be grateful that neither one had to endure the sorrow and dislocations of widowhood. My half-joking advice to couples with a happy marriage is to figure out how to die together. In a very strange way, God arranged that for Linda and Hal.
And we are also here to remember and to celebrate. And there are so many memories and so much to celebrate.
The first thing I knew about Hal was that he was a train nut. He worked for the subway system for decades, and even after his retirement from the TA, he worked for the Hudson-Bergen light rail system for more years. One of the first times I was at their house, I saw a train magazine on a coffee table. Reaching for it, I said, "What is this train thing all about?" The magazine cover showed a steam locomotive about to enter a tunnel. The big headline on the magazine was, "Big engine, tight fit." "Okay, okay," I said, tossing the magazine aside, "I get it." And, of course, Hal looked sheepish while Linda howled.
Linda was a devoted teacher. Teachread was even her email address. I was helping her grade exams one evening. At the end of one particularly marginal performance, the student had written, with almost every word misspelled, "Please Ms. Reiersen, don't give me another D." I showed it to Linda, and she hooted with laughter and marked the paper with a huge red D.
I'm sure all of us could recount endless funny, happy stories about them. Like the first time Hal administered the chalice, while John was priest-in-charge. His glasses slipped off his face into the chalice, and he put them, dripping with consecrated wine, on the fair linen. John jokingly told Hal the glasses would have to be burned, and John feared the reaction of the Altar Guild.
There was no guile in either one of them. Linda always made it immediately clear how she felt about everything. There was never any doubt. Hal, of course, was much more muted in his responses, but his face was an open book. You had to be pretty awful for Hal not to like you, and Linda had a great capacity for affection that usually overrode any annoyance she felt. But she would express that annoyance.
Like most funerals, this one is bittersweet. We can be glad that the debilities of age and failing health are at an end for them, but we might also be stunned once again at the finality of death. Maybe you have wished, as I have, that we could spend just 10 or 15 minutes with a loved one every so often, but the departed are on the other side of the Jordan, and that is not possible.
It is not possible — yet. They are landed safe on Canaan's side, while we have not yet reached the Promised Land. But God's promise is sure, and soon enough, in God's good time, we will join them, and what a day of rejoicing that will be.
In the meantime, we have not only our memories of Linda and Hal, but we have been changed as a result of loving them. We are not the people we would have been if we had never known them. And we still have our work to do to change the lives of those we love and to be changed by them.
More than a century ago Bishop Greer preached at the funeral of Henry Gilbert Woodruff, a former Churchwarden of this parish. A paraphrase of the words he used to describe Mr. Woodruff, quoted on the memorial plaque on the south wall of this church, could just as easily apply to Linda and Harald Reiersen: "great, good-hearted, Christian people. They have passed from the life of shadows into the life of light."
The Rev. Jerry Keucher +
Eulogy for Linda & Hal Reiersen
Monday, October 8, 2018
Christ Church New Brighton
A reading from the Letter of St. Paul to the Corinthians:
Love is patient,
Love is kind,
It does not envy
it does not boast, it is not proud.
It is not rude, it is not self-seeking,
it is not easily angered
it keeps no record of wrongs.
It always protects,
Love never fails.
It may seem a bit odd that I've begun this tribute to Linda and Hal with a reading traditionally used at weddings, but what bound them together in life was love – not the sappy "love means never to have to say you're sorry" kind - but instead a marriage and a way of life that was based on patience, kindness, perseverance, humility and respect for each other and those whose lives they touched – a pure and selfless love!
In the midst of a time of great sadness for friends and family alike I'm here today to celebrate the lives of these two special people. The word "celebrate" may seem very inappropriate right now, but I'm certain if you take one moment to remember a time you spent with Hal or Linda – or both of them – you will smile.
Their lives together were like a beautifully crafted musical composition – Hal brought the notes and Linda provided the tempo: allegro, presto, andante, adagio, and accelerando. Some days were more "largo" than "presto" but rest assured that their lives together were pure harmony from the day they met and throughout the 44+ years of their lives together as man and wife. So how did this union come to be?
Enter stage left – Harold Werner Reiersen born on February 11, 1941 – son of David and Elisa Reiersen, two hard-working Lutheran immigrants, and older brother to John and Nancy.
Hal was a curious and adventurous young man who loved to explore and there's a story our mom always told of a Trans-Atlantic crossing from Norway where a young Harold sneaked up to the bridge to sound the ship's horn while she lay in her cabin beleaguered with sea sickness. The minute she heard it she knew that it was Harold who was responsible for making this "less-than-joyful"noise.
Stories of his "childhood adventures" were legend: hooking our brother John to a fence in Norway and forgetting to come back and take him down; wandering off for hours to watch LIRR trains when the family lived in Valley Stream but failing to let our parents know of his arrivals and departures.
Hal attended Ft. Hamilton High School in Brooklyn where he was an active and enthusiastic member of the chorus – he loved music and he loved to sing. Following graduation his life went in many different directions – a short career in insurance with the Equitable Life Assurance Company in Manhattan; a stint in the army stationed at Schofield Army base in Hawaii (the same base used to film "From Here to Eternity.") His army career was short lived after he broke his ankle during maneuvers and ended up working on administrative duty in the office.
His further travels took him to Arizona where he got his first railroad job with the Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe railroad; back to New York to work for the Penn Central Railroad, and eventually working for the NYC Transit Authority, starting as a conductor, and moving up the ranks to motorman, and eventually a Deputy Superintendent. Hal always liked to work the late-night shifts when he was a motorman with the MTA – it enabled him to focus on the important things during the day: his choral activities, spending time with his family and going to church on Sundays.
And sometimes when the spirit moved him, he would play hymns over the subway loudspeaker system during the early morning trips when ridership was sparse. After he retired from the MTA he hooked up with the NJ Light Rail and after several years retired in a management position. Hal's crowning achievement came at age 75 when he was given a chance to drive the Essex Steam Train as part of their "Hand on the Throttle" program.
Hal's life centered around music and church and he was a member of many different choral organizations including the Charles Pope Choristers in Manhattan; The Ridge Chorale in Brooklyn; the Arcadian Chorale in New Jersey; and of course, The Richmond Choral Society on Staten Island – the place where this great love story began.
Enter stage right: Linda Anne Atwell, the daughter of Lillian and Edward Atwell, and younger sister of Anthony (Tony) Atwell. Born and raised on Staten Island, Linda made her grand entrance on September 15, 1943 and grew up in a beachfront home on the South Shore of Staten Island. She spent many hours fishing with her dad and also developed a lifelong passion for books, music and anything and everything associated with the arts. She attended the Staten Island Academy and later received her Bachelor's degree in English and her Master's Degree in Education from Wagner College.
Linda was outgoing, enthusiastic, had a great sense of humor and an infectious laugh. She was dedicated to her teaching career and loved her students - they were her biggest fans. She spent some of the best years of her life in the English Department at Susan Wagner High School. English literature was her specialty and William Shakespeare was her great love. She developed many lifelong friendships with a wonderful group of women with whom she taught - friendships that endured well beyond her 30-year teaching career.
Linda was also an avid music lover and chorister. She was an active member of the Staten Island branch of the Sweet Adeline's (a female barbershop group) and loved singing with them. But it was her mom's sage advice ("…you're not going to meet any men singing with bunch of women…") which was what eventually led her to The Richmond Choral Society.
And therein lies a tale…
Linda, and her best buddy, Valerie, followed her mom's advice and they joined The Richmond Choral Society. It was an incredible opportunity to sing under the direction of Dr. Anders Emile, the founder of RCS but it didn't take long for Linda to scope out a very attractive and talented tenor (the aforementioned Harold Reiersen) an outgoing guy who actually was rather quiet and shy when it came to affairs of the heart. When the group was scheduled to perform at an out-of-town venue Valerie was conveniently "sick" and unable to attend. Linda was sitting on the tour bus as Harold came on board and she invited him to join her since there just happened to be an empty seat. I vividly remember how happy he was when he returned home that evening. He was grinning from ear-to-ear and he went on and on about this wonderful girl in the chorus, how friendly she was, how easy it was to talk to her and how they talked and talked for hours. Ladies and gentlemen, he was hooked and at first I was a bit skeptical that a woman like this actually existed – but once I got to know her I knew that she was "the one" for my big brother. Meeting Linda for the first time was like meeting an old friend – she was a great conversationalist and always made you feel comfortable and special.
They were wed on April 6, 1974 in the Unitarian Church right down the street. James Browne, Linda's colleague from the Wagner English Department and a minister in the Baptist Church performed the ceremony. It was a beautiful service followed by a reception at the Officers Club at Fort Hamilton in Brooklyn. Since Linda and Hal had both been briefly married prior to their union their wedding song at the reception was "Love is Lovelier the Second Time Around." The engraved sentiment in their wedding rings – "BOOM, BOOM BOOM" – had a very special significance and had to do with a ritual they had at home. Linda would be in one room and would sing "I Love My Honey" and Hal would respond from another room "And My Honey Loves Me." The closing line, sung in unison "BOOM, BOOM, BOOM."
Their first child, Kristin Anne, was born on June 9, 1977, and brother David joined her two years later on September 18, 1979. Kristin attended the Montessori school at the JCC (Jewish Community Center) and made many friends while she was there. When she came home one day talking about Hanukkah and questioned when she would one day celebrate her Bat Mitzvah they realized it was time to find a church on Staten Island and Christ Church was the obvious choice.
Hal and Linda and their children became active members of this parish as each of them grew and thrived in this loving and nurturing environment. Hal was involved in just about everything the church had to offer – he was a member of the choir, a reader, a server at the altar, a Eucharistic Minister, a member of the Altar Guild, a visiting Eucharistic Minister, a Vestryperson and also served as a Warden. He also loved being a part of the "Ashes to Go" program at the SI Ferry Terminal on Ash Wednesday, and dutifully handed out literature and "kept count" of the people who received ashes from the Ministry Team. If there was a service he was always there - usually well before it started to make himself available if they needed someone to fill in. The older members of the parish, and especially those whom he visited in the capacity of Visiting Eucharistic Minister lovingly referred to him as "My Pal, Hal."
Hal was given the unofficial title of "Mr. Church" by the family and I will always remember the family dinners prepared by Linda and Hal where the meal started off with Hal reading an appropriate prayer from an old prayer book he had found. He is the only person I know who went through two copies of the combined Episcopal Hymnal and Prayer Book because he wore them out from constant use.
Linda was also a very active participant in the life of this church: Sunday School Teacher, Choir Member, member of the Altar Guild, a member of numerous committees, and a Vestry Person. She and Hal also volunteered at the many Fairs and fellowship events that took place at the church and always came out to support concerts, services, dances, dinners and almost every event that took place within these four walls.
I must say that I was also the beneficiary of their loyalty to Christ Church thanks to Linda's random invitation one day to come to the Sunday evening Fellowship service and dinner. I stepped inside this place and I was hooked – the beauty of the church, the pageantry of the service, and the wonderful people who worshipped here then – and now – who have become family to me.
Linda and Hal had a love that saw them through the joyful moments but also gave them solace and strength through the difficult times. Neither of them would ever give up, accepted their fate, and found a way to deal with whatever was happening and moved on. They were fiercely protective of each other and their children – Kristin and David – who were the focus of their lives. Their home was always an environment of love and joy and visitors were welcomed and treated as if they were members of the family. Linda was the unofficial "Pearl Mesta" of Staten Island and over the years she and Hal hosted numerous holiday parties, dinners, birthday parties, etc., etc.
The respective marriages of their children – Kristin to Matro Parrish and David to Christie Booker – brought them great joy in addition to the arrival of four incredible grandchildren – Sonja, Annalise, Charlie and William.
And as for The Richmond Choral Society – Hal and Linda were lifelong active members of this wonderful organization as well as Board Members, each serving in different capacities. Monday night rehearsals were an important part of their week – not just because of the music but also the friendships that were formed over the years. And may I add, Kristin was the first recipient of the Richmond Choral Society Scholarship.
We all know that the past few years brought many trials and tribulations to Hal and Linda. Hal's diagnosis of Parkinson's Disease; the lead abatement issue that lasted over two years before it was finally resolved; Linda's freak accident on Palm Sunday, Hal's unexpected passing in April and Linda's passing last month. While they were physically able, Hal and Linda remained strong and dealt with the problems as best as they could until their health-related issues got the best of them. They were so grateful for the support from their families and their many friends – colleagues, lifelong acquaintances, church members, chorus members, and of course the ongoing concern and constant presence of Father Babb - which helped them deal with the tragedies and losses.
It is that love and concern that now comforts their family as we mourn their passing and celebrate their lives this morning. I know that they are both singing in the Heavenly Choir making beautiful music with each other once again.
Although we are all overwhelmed by all that's happened this year I take comfort in the words of the Burial Office: "Give rest, O Christ, to your servants with your saints, where sorrow and pain are no more, neither sighing but life everlasting."
And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.
Pre-Thanksgiving Bake Sale to benefit Christ Church. Sunday, November 18th after service. Donations of baked goods greatly appreciated as well as purchasers of said baked goods. Please call Rita McGough with donations at (917) 613-0035. Volunteers needed.
The October Vestry Meeting has been rescheduled for Monday, October 15th at 7:30 p.m.
Vestry Members - Please pick up your meeting packets before Monday
Spiritual Formation Classes
Sunday was filled with God's loving and exuberant presence. The youth and children rocked Youth Sunday--offering up their talents and tackling a difficult text.
The Rite 13 One class had a fun afternoon at Snug Harbor getting to know each other and their leaders better. Rite 13 Two went out for Mini Golf.
Godly Play and Rite 13 One MEET this week. Students should gather with their teachers following the Gospel reading and will return in time for Communion. Rite 13 Two is OFF.Rite 13 will begin to collect your thoughts and words of wisdom this week at coffee hour. Bring your favorite quote or advice to share.
There will be a comprehensive parish update on Sunday, October 21 after the 10:00 a.m. worship service. Please make every effort to attend.
School supplies are needed for EES/EHS in Liberia
The Episcopal Elementary School and the Episcopal High School that Christ Church sponsors in Liberia is in need of school supplies for their students. So when you are shopping for our children's back to school supplies, please purchase some extra items to be sent to the EES & EHS School in Liberia.
Needed items are:
Loose leaf paper
Notebooks (composition, one subject, 5 subject)
Reading books for all ages
Just FaithJustFaith is a program of JustFaith Ministries that invites participants to live more simply and compassionately, and make a difference by responding to the needs of the world. This small group program is comprised of three phases that will help you explore today's issues through the lens of your faith, engage in dialogue around those issues, and formulate a personal/group response. Phases can be taken individually or together. We will be offering the first phase on Living Compassionately - Caring for the Poor at Christ Church New Brighton beginning October 16 at 7 pm. Additional meeting dates: 10/23, 10/30, 11/6, 11/13, 12/4, 12/11. If you would like more information or would like to register for JustFaith contact Kirstin Swanson, (347)446-4870 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Flamingo Fund Raiser
Send Flamingos instead of Flowers! For a suggested donation of $25, 12 flamingos and the sign of your choice (Happy Birthday, Congratulations, or Happy Anniversary) will visit any lawn on Staten Island for 24 hours. Includes card to recipient. A fundraiser of the Christ Church Youth Group. To Flock a Friend, call or text: 347-886-0039.
Building Fundraising Project
We are raffling an LG 49" LED HD Smart TV. Proceeds be used for the ongoing repair and maintenance of our buildings. Tickets are $5 each. The drawing will be Saturday, November 10, 2018 (winner need not be present). Please contact Beth McLean for tickets at 917-204-3709.
Special Events 2018
2 Chili Cook-Off
13 High Tea
26 Project Hospitality Music & Fellowship
3 Event Planning meeting 10 a.m.
4 Rite 13 Celebration
17 Belle Nuit-The Belle Nuit series at Christ Church presents La bohème in concert with orchestra. Performed by members of New York Concert Opera
14/15 Holiday food baskets
1 St. Nick's Fair
8 Night of Elegance
19/20 Holiday food baskets
24 Christmas Eve Services - 4 p.m. & 10:30 p.m.
25 Christmas Day Service 9:00 a.m.
31 Watch night service
Day of Relaxation & Movie Night
Our Day of Relaxation invites you to step away from your busy life to enjoy peace, and serenity. With a Facial or Back Massage starting at 25.00, the day will include a light lunch with a variety of teas and juice and soothing music. Join us on Saturday, October 27th from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Please contact Shelly Heath Gayford for more information and to make your reservation at 917-345-6709.
Join us on Saturday, October 27th for Movie Night. We will be show Nosferatu, a silent horror film released in 1929. In the movie, the mysterious Count Orlok summons Thomas Hutter to his remote Transylvanian castle in the mountains. Admission is $5 per person. Doors open at 6 p.m. and the movie will begin at 7 p.m. Refreshments will be available for purchase after the movie in the Guild Room.
St. Nick's Fair
Sheila Hewitt is now in the planning stage of the St. Nick's Fair on Saturday, December 1. We need everyone to help make this event a success. Please contact Sheila and let her know if you are able to help.
Thursday Morning Eucharist
Our Thursday morning Eucharist will resume on September 13th at 11:00 a.m. Please join us in the chapel for this extra opportunity to share in the Eucharist.
Sunday Morning Bible Discussion
Sunday Morning Bible Discussion
11:30 in the Vestry Room
All are welcomed.
Projects in the Works
This summer we are working on several upgrades and repairs to the Christ Church property. They are:
1. New carpet installation in the church offices.
2. Re-carpeting of Parish House hallways.
3. Repair and repainting of cloister between Rectory
and Parish House. (In process)
4. Replacement of the malfunctioning security system. (Completed)
Wherever possible, volunteers are helping to complete these projects.Our special thanks to those who have donated generous gifts to offset the costs of these projects.
Payer Ministry & Devotional Bible Study
Prayer Ministry and Devotional Bible Study meets on Wednesday nights at 7 pm in the Vestry Room. All are welcome to attend.
Our mission:To provide a time of spiritual fellowship to be inspired and renewed through prayer, Scripture and devotion as we offer our praise and intercessions to the Lord.
Christ Church Prayer List
The following individuals have requested our prayers: Fatu Barnes, Shirley Black, Marcia Clendenen, Sandra Cocks, Ines Colbourne, Marlene Elia, Rev. Dr. Abner Flowers, Lee Ann Gattullo, Sandra Giambalvo, Darlene Gray, Tea Rose Hill, Trish Mackey, William Marcus, Janet Massa, Alissa McGinley, Brian McGlynn, Andrea McIntosh, Fran Milauskas, Mabassi Paasewe-Totiment, Marilyn Robertson, Joyce Rowan, Denny Seese, Donna Seese, Henrietta Smith, Joseph Spielman, Mary Thompson, Marsha Wynter, Barbara Yatsevitch, Connor, and the people of St. Vincent's.
The Prayer List is intended to uphold and encourage those who are in need of healing prayers. If persons have been fully recovered and no longer need to be lifted up in this way, please let us know so that we can make room for others. If you need a loved one or friend to remain on the list, please call the office and speak to Cathy Romano, Parish Administrator. Thank you!
We give thanks to God for the following individuals who are celebrating their Birthdays this week: Utopia Mennoh (14), Jude Crewe (16), Nathaniel Seeley (21).
The Altar Flowers are given to the Glory of God and in loving memory of Charlotte Smith Mills, Dorothy Avery Campbell, Nancy Lee Campbell Forgang.
We pray for Gianni Colucci, Lucas Delvalle, Alice Green, Eleanor Larimer, Angela Lindsay, Calvin Morse and Asha Smith, as they prepare for their Rite 13 ceremony.
In the Anglican Cycle of Prayer, we pray for The Church in Wales and The Most Rev. John Davies.In the Diocese of New York, we pray for +Michael our Presiding Bishop, + Andrew, + Allen, and + Mary, our Bishops; Trevor + our Rector, and St. Philip's Church, Manhattan.