The Parish Annual
Meeting was held on Sunday, January 16, 2005 . At that time the
parish considered the passage of the proposed amendment to the
bylaws as well as the proposed slate of Vestry candidates that
had been previously presented, in the event that the amendment
was not put into effect.
The amendment was not passed, and the following individuals were
elected to the Vestry: Warden (for a two-year term): Beth McLean
; Vestry persons (each for a three -year term): Eugene Darconte,
Nick Dowen, Sheila Swigert and John Watson.
The following is a copy of the Warden’s message, which
was delivered at the annual meeting:
“2004 was a year filled with challenges and surprises
- but was also a time when we as a parish drew closer together.
We began the year in the planning stages of a LongRange Capital
Campaign and members of the Vestry, led by the campaign facilitator, LesleyShannon,
devoted many hours of discussion to formulate the necessary steps
towards its implementation.
However, during the course of the year we did have some financial
setbacks that caused a deficit in our Operating Budget, necessitating
a cutback in hours for our Sexton and Parish Secretary. We faced
our biggest challenge in October of 2004 with the resignation
of our Rector, and in turn our Long Range Planning efforts were
tabled in order to concentrate our efforts on finding supply
priests to continue our Sunday services, and to find an Interim
Pastor, and ultimately, a new Rector for Christ Church. It was
also a year when we lost several long-time parishioners: EileenMurray, AnnaParese, AnnLouderback and MarthaBendix -
these wonderful ladies will be missed.
However, as we look back, 2004 was also a year when we grew
stronger. It was the year when ChristChurch was
granted landmark status, thereby providing us with a way to secure
additional grant funding for the necessary improvements to our
parish buildings and grounds. It was a year when we received
a $60,000 grant for our Youth Programs, and most recently, a
$2500 grant for our Serenade Concert Series.
In 2004 the majority of the work was completed on our organ
renovation, and thanks to the generous donations of parishioners
and parish organizations we were able to install newer and more
efficient lighting in the Guild Room.
The important work of the Finance Committee, led by the indefatigable RichardSigman,
and the Plant & Equipment Committee, under the direction
of Susan Fowler, continued through
the year. The Vestry met many times during the latter part of
the year in response to our need to find an Interim Pastor, and
to form a Search Committee to find a new Rector.
We maintained a regular schedule of Sunday services with
wonderful supply priests: Mother Polly Kasey, Father Rand Frew,
and of course, Mother Rhoda Treherne-Thomas, whose spiritual
guidance brought us through Advent, Christmas and Epiphany. Their
efforts were complimented and strengthened by the continued hard
work of our Verger, Paul Smith, our Organist and Choirmaster,
Tom Sarff and our Altar Guild Directress, Shirley Elfers; and
let us not forget the daily petitions of Victor Stanwick as he
did the Morning Office each day of the week, and Victor and Willie
Black, Jr. coordinating the Second Sunday Healing Services in
the Chapel. Thanks are also due to Father John Johnson of St.
John’s Church, Father Buddy Stallings of Ascension Church,
and Father Michael Delaney of St. Andrew’s Church, who
so graciously gave of their time and energies to visit parishioners
in the hospital and conduct special services during the week
as was necessary.
The Sunday School continued to function under the Direction
of Sheila Hewitt, Christine Szczepanik and Connie Black and we
were delighted by the Advent Play and welcomed the Magi to the
Manger this year on Epiphany.
Our yearly fund raising and fellowship events continued as
scheduled: The Chinese Auction on October, co-chaired by Alleida
Mitchell and Richard Zayzay; the St. Nick’s Fair under
the watchful eye of its chairperson, Nick Lettiere; and our successful
Holly Ball directed once again by co-chairpersons Beth McLean
and Trevor Mills.
The year ahead will also be filled with challenges and hard
work - but there are many positive opportunities for growth and
change as well. Yesterday, members of the Vestry had avery
positive meeting with a potential candidate to fill the Interim
Pastor position and are hoping to finalize the details within
the next week or so. However, I am pleased to tell you that Fr.
John Covington, the former rector of St. Alban’s Church,
will be our supply priest for the month of February. In addition
to the Sunday morning service schedule, he will also be with
us on Ash Wednesday.
We have received the names of several individuals who have
expressed an interest in being part of the Search Committee for
a new Rector, and Willie Black, Jr. has been named to chair this
committee. The final list of members will be determined within
the next week or so and the committee will soon get underway
with the important work that lies ahead.
This year marks the 100th Anniversary of our church building
and a Gala May Ham Dinner has been scheduled for May 14, 2005.
Bishop Sisk and Bishop Taylor have both expressed an interest
in joining us for the festivities that evening.
Our love of God, and our love for Christ Church and
the many worthwhile and important committees, programs and activities
has brought us closer together this past year. Our church will continue
to thrive and grow and we will one day be able to continue with our Long Range Plans
and fulfill the many dreams that we have for our future."