the Tower Chimes
November, 2010
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Clergy Corner
Holiday Food Baskets
St. Nicholas Celebration at the Cathedral
Concert for Liberian Schools at Christ Church
Vestry Notes
St. Nick's Holiday Fair @ Christ CHurch on Saturday, December 4th
Thanksgiving Day Service at Christ Church
Save the Date! Serenade COncert at Christ Church on Sunday, November 7th
When Generations Meet
Author, Author!
The Choristers
Call Him Fr. Carletta!
Christ Church Holly Ball on Saturday, December 11th
Blessed Bargain Brunches
Scratchboard Art Project
From the Parish Register
Youth Choir Debuts October 17th
Around the Parish
November Schedules
Clergy Corner
the Rev. Charles H. Howell, Rector

The Rev. Charles H. Howell, Rector of Christ Church New BrightonAs many of you are aware we have designated November 7, All Saints’ Sunday, as Stewardship Sunday at Christ Church. This is the day we ask our parishioners to show their support by returning their 2011 pledge cards, indicating their commitments of  time, talent and treasures for the benefit of Christ Church.

The focus of this month’s issue of the Tower Chimes is on Stewardship, and rather than sharing my thoughts with you in this column, you’ll find “reprints” of talks given by Barnett Shepherd and Beth McLean, and also a summary of the Financial Secretary’s most recent quarterly report.

Faithfully yours,

Fr. Chuck

Barnett Shepherd – Vestry Member
My name is Barnett Shepherd and I am a member of the Vestry and of the Stewardship Committee.

“Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like unto it; Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself. On these two commandments hang all the Law and the Prophets.”

This statement, found in the Gospels and in Rite One of the Book of Common Prayer, is Christ’s summary of the law. Loving God can be abstract, and a self-serving matter, but combined with the commandment to love neighbor as self it becomes powerful and explicit. Giving to others almost always brings closeness to God and happiness. Loving our neighbor is its own reward. Giving is food for the soul.

Giving without regard to reward is the highest form of Christian love. It is the great reward of our life as Christians and as human beings. Many know this feeling of happy sacrifice in personal relationships, in raising families and caring for those we love, but Christ’s command to love our neighbor as ourself extends far beyond our family circle, to the whole world. We who have full stomachs and warm beds to sleep in must extend ourselves to those in need. They are all around us and the great majority of the world. Our church reaches out to those in need of both sustenance and justice.

God bless Christ Church. May we, the latest generation of congregants stretching back 160 years, continue to be a beacon of love and service in this community and nation. May God instill in us a spirit of generosity to continue his work that we may carry out his commandments. AMEN.

Beth McLean – Financial Secretary
“Good Morning! My name is Beth McLean. As you can see, I am a member of the Christ Church choir, but I am also your Financial Secretary. I am here to speak briefly today about the finances of Christ Church.

We all know what it takes in today’s world to support or operate a household. As part of our Christ Church family, we ALL must understand that the church – OUR CHURCH – is another household that we must support. And, as such, we must be prepared to support that household both spiritually and financially. Without your pledge and your continued giving to support that pledge we cannot make ends meet.

What is a pledge? Your pledge is what goes into our operating budget. The operating budget is what keeps our church going. This is the money that it takes to turn on the lights, to heat this place in winter, and allows us to open the doors for the many programs that we support in our community. Your attendance and participation at our church services, as well as your support of our many fund raisers, is essential for the well-being of our church. And we thank you for that!

By now, everyone should have received a letter and a pledge card and a blue talent bank sheet. If you did not receive one, please speak to me after the service. Fr. Howell has requested that we all give our pledge cards in on All Saints’ Sunday, November 7. Some of you have given them in already and that is fine.

If you have pledged a certain amount for the past year and are able to, we ask that you please bring this pledge up to date. There are many people who give their time and talent here. We need you to step up and volunteer. But most important is your pledge. Your pledge is your financial support that you give to the church each year. Please help to keep Christ Church alive and flourishing.  Thank you!”

Financial Secretar's Quarterly Report
(Summary as of 9/30/2010)

Number of pledging units: 90
Number of units that pledged this quarter: 90
Number of units that fulfilled their pledge: 45
Number of units behind in their pledge: 45
Total amount in arrears (pledged so far this year): $94,785
Total amount paid so far this year: $90,746
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Holiday Food Baskets
Aleida Mitchell

Horn of PlentyPreparations continue for distribution of Holiday Food Baskets at Christ Church. Although we have received some funding from our local elected officials there are still many people in need, and of course, the need to solicit additional funding for this program.

Last month we suggested that parishioners might want to consider sponsoring a basket at a cost of $25. We’ve received some responses to this suggestion, and additional donations would be most welcome.

The baskets for Thanksgiving will be assembled on Tuesday, November 16th,   Wednesday, November 17 and distributed on Thursday, November 18 and sign-up sheets will be posted in the hallway for those wishing to help assemble and distribute these baskets. If you have any questions please feel free to contact me, or our Administrative Assistant, Cathy Romano.
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St. Nicholas Celebration at the Cathedral
Nick Dowen

AIDS Action International presents the 17th Annual St. Nicholas Celebration on Wednesday, November 17 at 7:30 p.m. at The Cathedral of St. John the Divine Amsterdam Avenue at 112th Street in Manhattan.

Icon of Saint Nicholas by the Rev. John H. WalstedThis annual holiday celebration is a Community Outreach of AIDS Action International that benefits such worthwhile causes as St. Mary's Children's Hospital AIDS Home Care Program, Bayside, Queens; Montefiore Medical Center, AIDS Home Care Center, Bronx; A Better Place; Bailey House; and St. Mary's Episcopal Center, Manhattan  

Artists who will appear include Lavender Light: Black and People of All Colors Lesbian and Gay Gospel Choir; Sandra Goodman, Contralto; Threeds, Oboe Trio; Sal Sabella, Singer; and Bruce Neswick, Director of Cathedral Music and Organist.

Admission is free but those who attend are asked to bring Holiday Gifts (unwrapped) for people of all ages living with AIDS.  

If you’d like any additional information on this event please contact Father Rand Frew at 212-633-1062 or Nick Dowen at 718-448-2006.
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Concert for Liberian Schools at Christ Church
Nancy Reiersen

On Sunday, October 24, five incredibly talented performers participated in a special concert at Christ Church to help raise funds to send books and supplies to the St. John’s and House of Bethany Schools in Liberia.

Those who were fortunate enough to attend this wonderful classical concert shared in the talents of Valerie Quinlan, violinist; Nabate Isles, trumpeter; Vincent Craig, pianist, Beth Johanning, soprano and Thomas Sarff, organist.

The concert was organized by William Sherman, in conjunction with other Liberian members of our congregation who share a lifelong connection to these schools which are still recovering from the civil war in Liberia. All funds that were raised will be used to restock the school libraries.

Special thanks to all of these wonderful artists, and also to Valerie Quinlan, Susan Fowler, Victor Stanwick and Alleida Mitchell, who worked behind the scenes to coordinate all of the details.

Although many were unable to attend, donations will still be accepted towards this most worthy cause. Please speak with William Sherman or Fr. Chuck if you would like to make your donation.
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Vestry Notes
Nick Dowen

The regularly scheduled meeting of the Vestry of Christ Church New Brighton took place on Monday, October 11, 2010. Following are highlights of some of the important issues that were discussed at that time:

Treasurer’s Report – Dorothy Thompson

  • Approximately 75 percent of this year’s budget was spent by the end of September – this amount is in line with budget allocation plans
  • The Diocesan Assessment for 2011 will be reduced by 10 percent.

Plant & Equipment Committee – Susan Fowler

  • It was moved to approve $6500 for the preparation of the Parish House masonry survey by Lichten Craig Architects LLP. Motion carried.
  • It was moved to spend up to $4000 for the purchase of scaffolding to be erected around the Parish House bellcote, which is in dangerously deteriorated condition. Motion carried.
  • By consensus it was agreed that Kevin and Diana Branciforte will go ahead with their plans for a children’s flower and vegetable garden of raised beds on the Fillmore Street side of the church property back towards the parking lot.
  • Carpet replacement in the Parish House and Rectory will require first an analysis of the condition of the floors underneath the carpets. It was agreed that carpeting in the church’s center aisle and on the sacristy steps will be retained, for the safety and comfort of churchgoers and communicants.
  • In response to the Vestry’s resolution last month concerning the basement workshop, the Plant & Equipment Committee proposed to develop a plan to add a self-closing fire door, put up a three-hour fire retardant sheetrock wall and ceiling, buy a paint safety locker, and set up shelving or another system to organize the scrap lumber. It was also suggested that an independent expert be consulted both before and after any work is undertaken.

Education Committee

  • There are 17-20 regular participants in the Godly Play program. The Journey to Adulthood program (spirituality, sexuality, society, self) will feature several classes taught by Dr. Hueldine Webb.

Nominating Committee

  • The Nominating Committee for new Vestry members, chaired by Churchwarden Alleida Mitchell, had its first meeting. A few nominations have been received.

Christ Church Community Outreach (CCCO)

  • It was moved to allow the expenditure of up to $5000 for holiday food baskets (Thanksgiving, Christmas, Easter). Motion carried. This expenditure will be reimbursed by a government grant.

Christ Church Community Youth Choir

There are 21 young people enrolled in the Christ Church Community Youth Choir, under the direction of Beth Johanning-Hayes. The two-hour rehearsals have so far been a great success.
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St. Nick's Holiday Fair at Christ Church on
Saturday, December 4th
Nancy Reiersen

Come one; come all to the annual St. Nick’s Holiday Fair at Christ Church. This is one of our most joyful fund-raising celebrations where everyone gets to share in the joy of the holiday season – both volunteers and visitors!

Christmas trees and decorations will fill the parish hall – and let’s not forget Nick Lettiere’s holiday wreaths which are always a big hit. Nick will be present that day to create a wreath for you on the spot, or he’ll take your order if you can’t take it home with you that day.

There will be food (of course!) – home baked goodies for purchase and the St. Nick’s Café for those who want to stop for a bite to eat. Vendors galore, raffles, storytelling for the kids with Babaloo and the opportunity to have a photo taken with Santa and Mrs. Claus.

Obviously, it takes a great deal of time and effort to make this event a success. Volunteers are needed, and there will be a sign-up sheet on the bulletin board in the parish house as the event draws closer.
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Thanksgiving Day Service at Christ Church
Cathy Romano
Please mark your calendar and plan to join your fellow Christ Church parishioners as we gather together for the service of Holy Eucharist at 10 a.m. on Thanksgiving morning. We will take this opportunity to sing some familiar Thanksgiving hymns and give thanks for the many blessings that God has bestowed upon our church, and upon each of us.
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Save the Date! Serenade COncert at Christ Church on Sunday, November 7th
Valerie Quinlan
Serenade at Historic Christ Church is pleased to present a vocal recital featuring tenor, Paul Appleby and pianist Nathan Brandwein. The concert will take place at Christ Church on Sunday, November 7, at 3 p.m. A meet-the-artist reception follows the concert. The concert is free to the public.
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When Generations Meet
Nick Dowen

Christ Blessing the ChildrenChurch has been described at one of the few places where people of different generations meet together regularly. These days at Christ Church New Brighton this observation seems truer than ever.

Every Sunday we see families with children in the pews and at the communion rail. The singing of the Godly Play Choir and the Christ Church Community Youth Choir (itself quite varied in age) has been accorded a warm reception. Community activism is a hallmark of our Sunday School, as its recent participation in the Breast Cancer March demonstrates. The Journey to Adulthood program (spirituality, sexuality, society, self) will feature several classes taught by Dr. Hueldine Webb.

There is a Gospel mandate in all of this. One of our two Schnakenberg memorial stained-glass windows, "Christ Blessing the Little Children" (Tiffany, 1904), reminds us of this. The window includes mothers as well as children. We have too much segregation by age in our society. People of all generations benefit when everybody comes together. We learn from each other and help each other out.   

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Author, Author!
Nancy Reiersen

The Rev. Jerry KeucherCongratulations to The Rev. Jerry Keucher on the publication of his second book, “Humble and Strong.”

Jerry will be holding a book signing here at Christ Church on Thursday, November 18 from 6-8 p.m. and we urge you come by and say hello.
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The Choristers
Cathy Romano

Beth Johanning HayesFollowing the debut of the Christ Church Community Youth Choir on October 17, our “senior” chorister, Bill Beveridge took time to compare “notes” with John Hayes, a member of the Youth Choir.

Coincidentally, both John and Bill each joined their respective choirs at the age of seven – but eight decades apart! Bill joined the Christ Church Men and Boys Choir and John the Community Youth Choir; both have had parental musical influences in their lives (John is the son of Community Youth Choir Director, Beth Johanning-Hayes.)

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Call Him Father Carletta!
Fr. Chuck

David Carletta, our former seminarian, will be ordained to the priesthood on Friday, December 3 at 6:30 p.m. at Grace Church, Newark. All are invited to attend.

A sign-up sheet to share rides will be posted on the bulletin board in the Parish Hall.
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Christ Church Holly Ball on
Saturday, December 11th
Beth McLean

Just a note to remind you to check your mailbox for your invitation to the Christ Church Holly Ball, which takes place this year on Saturday, December 11th.

Our honorees this year include Shirley and Willie Black, Jr., two hard-working and dedicated parishioners who are well known to just about everyone in the parish.  We will also be honoring Herb Smith III, a well known figure on Staten Island and a great friend to Christ Church. Herb is a “permanent” sponsor of the Holly Ball Journal, and his Meislohn-Silvie ads are prominently displayed on the back page of the Journal. Each year Herb donates the colorful church calendars which are given to parishioners free of charge.

As many of you are aware, each year we issue a Holly Ball Journal to memorialize our honorees, and to give friends, neighbors and local businesses a chance to offer their congratulations. In addition, the Journal ad revenues help to offset some of the underlying costs for the Holly Ball. We ask that you show your support – and also ask for your help – by going to your local merchants, friends and family and asking them to take an ad in the Journal. Forms are available at the back of the church, in the Guild Room and on the counter outside of the parish office.    

Mark your calendars – you won’t want to miss out on this fun-filled holiday event!
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Blessed Bargain Brunches
Colin Reed

Bubble and SqueakLast fall a group of about twenty or so parishioners, led by Elizabeth Gattullo and Alleida Mitchell, thought it would be a great idea to prepare some Sunday lunches at Christ Church on four weekends throughout the year as a small way of helping the Vestry balance our budget for the next fiscal year. In this way we hope to raise $1,000 to help Christ Church.

Tasty FoodThe lunches are planned for Sunday, January 4 (German); March 13 (Irish); July 17(Italian); and October 23 (British). If you’re aware of any clashes of dates please let us know. The cost will be $10, and $5 for youngsters and we hope that all of you who attend the 10 a.m. service will eat lunch afterwards and perhaps encourage friends from elsewhere to join us.

Spotted DickWe are planning fully-cooked lunches made in the Christ Church kitchen under Marlene Elia’s supervision. Usually we’ll offer as much as you can eat, with coffee or tea and after-lunch mints – an incredible bargain which you can’t get in any restaurant anywhere. Beer and wine will be the only extras for sale.

We hope that all parishioners will make a special effort to enjoy these Sunday lunches to help close the gap between the income and expenses of Christ Church and at the same time have some fun with friends. It is vital that we all join in a pleasing effort to help wipe out our own deficit.

SpaghettiosCoffee Hour will be held in the Vestry Room, and where possible we hope to organize the sale of baked and other relevant goods – for example the Italian lunch donated by Nick, Nancy and Nicholas Lettiere will be accompanied by the sale of Italian groceries donated by parishioners. The Irish lunch donated by John Watson will feature corned beef and cabbage, Irish coffee and a special dessert for St. Patrick’s Day. Marlene Elia will prepare a German lunch of Bavarian Pot Roast and all the trimmings, including noodles and cucumber salad, but it will be the gift of Dominic, Paul and Marlene Elia, and Shirley Elfers – all of German descent. The British lunch will be donated by Colin Reed, Trevor Mills and others of British origin. Paul and Karen Smith and Judy Davis will offer Shepherd’s Pie with stilton and walnut salad and an incredible trifle being made by Debbie Lindsay, who is from Coventry, England. We also hope to rope in Rupert Bower, named after the bowers who fought so magnificently at Agincourt with Henry V in 1415.
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Scratchboard Art Project
Nancy Reiesen

Starfish by Amber JonesThis summer the Rite 13 and Journey to Adulthood classes of Christ Church were invited to join the youth of Trinity Church Wall Street to express their views on the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico by participating in a 6-week scratchboard workshop led by Nathan Fitch.

The resulting artworks were shown at Trinity Church and are now on display for three weeks in the Guild Room of Christ Church. Make sure to visit the Guild Room and see these impressive works created by our youth and their friends.

Click here to view a slide show of the art work on the Trinity Church website. A new window will open. Click on the starfish picture to see the slides.

Thanks to Denise Rompilla, our Journey to Adulthood Coordinator, and our youth leaders who accompanied them to Trinity Church,  and to Ferina Moses of Trinity Church for inviting us to participate in the project.
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From the Parish Register
Cathy Romano

November Birthdays

3—Laura Craig;  4 – Ellen Mazzucco, Hugo McIntosh, Jr; Larry Modzelewski; 5 – Paul Smith; 13 – Tamara Christopher, Marlene Elia, Samolu Freeman, Sheila Hewitt; 14 –Analies Noel; 16 – Jonathan Elia; 17 – Thomas Hotaling; 18 – Jay Spadaro; 22 – Varney Freeman, Sr.;  25 – Eugene Darconte; 26 – John Szczepanik, Dorothy Thompson; 28 – Kim Davis Sorge; 30 – Christine Szczepanik, Ronald Bell, Mark Hewitt II;

November Anniversaries

16 – Ron and Ellen Mazzucco; 24 – Paul and Janet Schneider
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Youth Choir Debuts October 17th
Nancy Reiersen

On Sunday, October 17 members of the newly-formed Christ Church Community Youth Choir joined forces with members of the Christ Church Choir during the 10 a.m. service.

Under the direction of Beth Johanning, the choir performed Sing to the Lord by Michael Praetorius as the post-communion hymn, and also participated in various other portions of the service.

The Community Choir will be part of our Sunday service on Sunday, November 21 and will also participate in the Christmas Eve Family Service on December 24. They rehearse at Christ Church every Thursday from 4-6 p.m.

Congratulations to Beth Johanning and this exceptional group of young singers on their inaugural “performance.” We are all looking forward to hearing you again.
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Around the Parish
Nancy Reiersen

It was a very busy time at Christ Church last month – the debut of the Christ Church Community Youth Choir, the concert to raise funds for Liberian Schools, the Autumn Auction, and so much more – all signs of a healthy and thriving parish!

This month as we prepare for Stewardship Sunday, Thanksgiving Day, and the St. Nick’s Fair and the Holly Ball in December, let’s take a moment to give thanks for Fr. Chuck, our Vestry and all of the parishioners and committees at Christ Church who have made these events possible.

Congratulations to Kim and Eddie Sorge on the birth of their daughter, Lauren Marley, on October 24. Lauren weighed in at 6 lbs, 12 oz and her grandmother, Judy Davis, couldn’t be happier!

Glad to have John Watson and his trusty camera back with us again. John recently underwent knee surgery and is slowly but surely stepping back into the picture!

We also send best wishes and prayers for a complete recovery to Ann Sohm, Shirley Elfers, David Nygard, Martha Keucher and Fr. John Walsted.

A few months ago we mentioned that Claire Kennedy, the youngest daughter of Laura and Henry Kennedy, had joined the Peace Corps and was training in a small village in Northwest Africa. Claire continues to post her experiences on her blog (http://www.claireinmali.blogspot.com) and we encourage you to take a few minutes to share in her experiences. It’s well worth the visit!

That’s all for now, but you can be assured that there will be much more to share next month. If you have some news that you’d like to share with our readers please let me know. You can leave a note in the Tower Chimes mailbox in the parish office or send me an e-mail at nreiersen@yahoo.com.

Best wishes for a wonderful Thanksgiving.
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November Schedules
Cathy Romano

Youth Group
Friday, November 12th7:00 pm.. Movie Night
Friday, November 26th No Youth Group  (Friday after Thanksgiving)

Journey to Adulthood
Sundays 11:30 a.m. in Vestry Room
Nov. 7th – Who I am vs. Who I Would Like to Be
Nov. 14th – Why Am I Doing What I’m Doing:
                    The Four Relational Stages
Nov. 21 - Trying on a New Name: An Exercise
                 in Recreating Ourselves
Nov. 28 - Assertion: Personal Power and Self-Esteem

Rite 13
Sundays 11:30 a.m. in the auditorium
Nov. 7 – I am Made in God’s Image:
               My Special Qualities
Nov. 14 – I am Made in God’s Image: Who Am
                 I? (Identity and Family)
Nov. 21 – I am Made in God’s Image: A Living
                Sacrifice
Nov. 28 – Eating from the Tree of Life: Rules
                 for Holy Living

Adult Education
Wednesdays at 7:30 p.m.
Nov. 3 – How to Read the Bible for All it’s
               Worth, Chapters 8 & 9
Nov. 10 – How to Read the Bible for All it’s
                Worth, Chapters 10 & 11
Nov. 17 – Rediscovering Values
Nov. 24 – No class (day before Thanksgiving)

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