Etching of Christ Church By Bill Murphy


Church in Transition: Update

Kirstin Swanson-Basso and John Gerney
The process of finalizing the selection of an Interim Rector continues, as the Wardens and Vestry are charged with doing. The Wardens have interviewed a candidate, the Vestry has met with that same candidate, and the congregation will receive an update on that process as it moves along. The Vestry will have a meeting with The Rev. Deborah Tammearu, Canon for Transition Ministry, on October 26th, and Canon Tammearu will be coming to Christ Church on November 8 to preach at both the 8 a.m. and 10 a.m. services and preside over a parish-wide meeting on the process of searching for a Rector, immediately following the service. Please bring your questions for her at that time.

Getting an Interim Rector in place is the most immediate need for the health of our parish. As stated in the August issue of the Tower Chimes, while the process of forming a search committee for a Rector is not officially underway, if you are feeling called to this position, please forward a letter of interest to the attention of the Wardens.

Meet Our Supply Priest for October

The Rev. Simeon O. Johnson

As the Vestry continues in their efforts to find an Interim Rector, we are fortunate to have Fr. Simeon Johnson with us this month to provide the continuity and strength that we need during this time of transition.

Fr. Simeon is no stranger to Staten Island, or to our parish. Most recently he served in a long-term supply capacity at St. Mary’s Church here on Staten Island until their  new rector, Fr. Free, was instituted this year. He has also been our supply once or twice during the summer and worked closely with Fr. Chuck on the IPC Committee. Fr. Simeon’s wife, Renate and their son, Everett, have been a familiar sight at our Sunday morning services for several months.

Father Johnson was born in Freetown, Sierra Leone. He studied Mathematics and Physics, graduated from Milton Margai Teacher's College, University of Sierra Leone, and taught Mathematics and Physics for several years. He served as Deacon and Priest in the Anglican Diocese of Freetown from 1989-1991,  Clinical Pastoral Education (CPE) at St. Luke's/Roosevelt Hospital, in Manhattan, and Advanced CPE as a supervisor in training with The College of Pastoral Supervision and Psychotherapy New York/New Jersey.

Father Johnson served as assistant at All Saints Episcopal Church in Staten Island for several years and also served as Chaplain at Christ (Episcopal) Hospital in Jersey City, and as Chaplain to the Youth/Canterbury club at Wagner College, He also served as Priest-in-Charge at St. Edmunds Episcopal Church, Bronx, and as supply priest in several parishes in New York and New Jersey also.

Fr. Johnson holds a degree in Sociology and Anthropology from The City University of New York and a Master in Divinity from The General Theological Seminary.

We welcome you, Fr. Simeon, and are grateful for your presence here at Christ Church.

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Belle Nuit at Christ Church

A Night of Famous Opera Arias and Duets Saturday, November 7th 2015 7:00 pm.
As a wonderful addition to the Staten Island local arts scene, two critically acclaimed opera singers (and Staten Island locals) soprano Melody Alesi, and mezzo Joan Callaghan, offer an evening of many famous and beloved arias and duets from the Soprano and Mezzo Operatic repertoire.

There will be a pre-concert lecture and a post-concert Meet the Artist soiree where you will have a chance to speak with the artists, savor hors d'oeuvres, sip wine and be surrounded by other opera lovers like yourself.

Admission for this lovely evening is $25.

From the Parish Register

October Birthdays
1—Julia Kennedy; 2 – Judith Davis;
5 – William Sherman, Ronald Massey;
6 – Susan Fowler; 8 - Andrea McIntosh, Jeremiah Zayzay; 9 – Christina Noel, Brandon Thompson; 10 –Ines Colbourne; 11 – Eva Black, Kataski George, Jaime Szczepanik; ; 12 – Olisha James, Charles McLean, Jr., Kate Schneider; 14 –Utopia Mennoh; 16 – Jude Crewe 18 – Katherine Liu; 21 –Nathaniel Seeley; 22- John Gerney; 23 –Deborah Lindsay, Peter Liu; 24 – Edward Craig; 26 – Hueldine Webb; 27 – Catherine McGough; 29 – Amber James, Virginia Peel; 30 – Hugo McIntosh, Sr.; 31- Marcia Clendenen 

October Anniversaries  28 – Michael & Amy Mazziotti

If your special day is not in our records, call the Parish Office at 727-6100 so it can be added.

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Are You a "Grown-Up"?

Lisa Rhoades

In our society, the line between childhood and adulthood is often fuzzy. Unlike other cultures, we don’t have formalized rites of passage that define the points along the path to adulthood. We need ways to tell our young people they are making progress; they are growing and learning; they are becoming adults. The Journey to Adulthood program that we use does just that.

During the regular 10 a.m. service on Sunday, October 25th, we will celebrate an important Rite of Passage with some of our teens. This liturgy is formally called “The Celebration of Manhood and Womanhood”, but is more well-known as “Rite-13” since it takes place near the candidate’s 13th Birthday – much like a bar mitzvah or bat mitzvah.

During the ceremony, we recognize the gift of womanhood or manhood that God bestows on each one of us. This is a free gift that we cannot earn and need not prove. This gift is the essence of who we are. As we grow and mature in the journey to adulthood, our knowledge and skills increase, but the essential core of who we are remains the same

There are several young people in our parish who are, or are about to turn, 13 this academic year, including:
Miriame Aghailas
Alayne Gilbert
Amy Stambaugh

Please keep them and all of the young people in our Rite 13 class in your thoughts and prayers and as they start this new program year; and plan to be with us to witness this important event.

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Wisdom Book

Christ Church's Book of Wisdom for Our 13 Year Olds
Lisa Rhoades
In the spirit of books like "Life's Little Instruction Book", we are compiling advice from parishioners. Please send in a bit of advice (a few sentences, perhaps) to our teenagers who will be celebrating an important rite of passage, their "Rite 13", on Sunday, October 25.

Your advice can be something practical, like "Don't go to bed with gum in your mouth." Or something more profound like "Be content to be who you really are." Both are important to know.

Please identify yourself by your first name and age or stage in life (For example, Lisa, mother of two, etc.)

Please put your completed form (which will be inserted in the Sunday bulletin) in the offering plate, email it to Lisa Rhoades or return it to Cathy Romano in the church office by Monday, October 19th.

Deacons' Corner

Keep in Touch With God During the Week!

I saw this title from the bulletin of my daughter’s church, St. Paul’s Episcopal in New Jersey. It immediately caught my eye and touched my heart.  It is exactly what our Parish offers us the opportunity to do in addition to all of our Sunday morning services

  • Sunday 11:30  Adult Education Bible Study which allows us to focus, read, learn and share our  thoughts  on the Word of God.
  • Wednesday  7:15 pm Prayer Group allows us to offer praise and  thanksgiving, in a smaller  setting and to reflect on the  love of Jesus and the presence of the Holy Spirit. Prayers are offered for every aspect of our church, for the needs of others, for ourselves and our loved ones
  • Thursday 11 a.m. Holy Eucharist
  • SECOND  Thursday and SECOND  Sunday Healing Mass service that Includes Healing Prayers, the Laying on of Hands and  Anointing  with Holy Oil.

In the Gospel of Luke beginning with10:38 it says : “Now as they went on their way, Jesus entered a certain village, where a woman named Martha welcomed him into her home. She had a sister named Mary, who sat at the Lord’s feet and listened to what he was saying.

But Martha was distracted by her many tasks, so she came to him and asked, “Lord do you not care that my sister has left me to do all the work by myself? Tell her then to help me.”

But the Lord answered her, “Martha, Martha, you are worried and distracted by many things; there is need of only one thing.  Mary has chosen the better part and it will not be taken from her.”

Many of us have busy schedules and are distracted and pulled in many directions.  Home, work, school, meetings, appointments, church work and more. Attending any one of these offerings allows us to grow in our faith by “Keeping in touch with God during the week.”

In His Love,

Deacon Novella

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Save the Date!

Family Boo Bash,
Friday, October 30,
Christ Church
7:00 - 9:00 p.m.

Once again we will have a Boo Bash on Friday, October 30th for children 14 years old and younger. Decorations and individually wrapped candy are needed. Please see Andrea McIntosh on Sunday or call the office 718-727-6100 for more information.

St. Nick's Fair, Saturday, December 5
Holly Ball, Saturday, December 12

Nominating Committee for Vestry and Church Warden Convening

As is the usual tradition, outgoing Senior Warden Kirstin Swanson is convening a committee to nominate Vestry members and candidate(s) for Junior Warden. The qualifications are as follows:
For vestryperson (three year term):

  • Aged 18 years or older
  • Baptized
  • Regular attendance at worship
  • Contributing member for at least 12 months prior to the annual meeting

Current vestrypersons finishing a full three-year term may not be elected as vestryperson until a year has passed between the end of their term and the next annual meeting. Current vestrypersons finishing a term of less than three years may be nominated for a three-year term.
For church warden (two year term):

  • Aged 18 years or older
  • Communicant in the Episcopal Church
  • Regular attendance at worship
  • Contributing member for at least 12 months prior to the annual meeting

The senior warden may not run for either junior warden or vestry person until a year has passed between the end of her term and the next annual meeting.

Nomination forms for vestryperson or church warden are available in the back of the church and on the counter outside th church office.

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Daylight Savings TIme

Daylight Savings Time begins on Sunday, November 1.
Don't forget to set your clocks back one hour the night before!

New Season Underway for
Christ Church Community Youth Choir

The Christ Church Community Choir is back in action and preparing for a very busy 2015 - 2016 season under the direction of Jana Ballard, and assistant, Kristin Parrish.

Membership is open to any child 7-14 who has a treble voice and lives on Staten Island. Rehearsals are held on Thursday evening in the Guild Room from 6 to 7:30 p.m.  For more info please speak to Jana or Kristin or send an e-mail to:

CCCYC's first performance of the season will be on Sunday, October 18, during the 10 a.m. church service.   

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Steel Drum Lessons

Deacon Geri Swanson
Christ Church Community Steel Drummers will commence lessons on Friday evening from 5:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m., October 16th at Christ Church. Classes are open to all students grades 3 – 9.

We have a limit of 12 students due to the number of instruments we have available.  Please let me know your child is interested in registering so we can prepare for the first day of class.

Usher Guild

Connie Black
On behalf of Christ Church, I would like to first thank the following  young adults/older youths, who volunteered to help as ushers during the summer months.  They are Adeja & Tyler Jean-Mary, Amber James, Eva-Marie Black, Sydney McIntosh, Evelyn & Siaber Zayzay, Everett Johnson and notable mention to my husband.

Now on a personal note - I would like to thank my established ushers, because we are not elders just yet, for your continued support and commitment during this time of transition in fulfilling your commitment to the Usher’s Guild.

Please note that on Oct 25th there will be a brief training session after the 10:00 a.m. service for anyone interested in becoming an usher.   Please also note a tentative date has been set, November 22, where we will ask for a special blessing to continue to guide us, especially during this difficult time.

I must add one more thing while writing this note. I had a candle lit directly behind me that I had to blow out because the wax was almost gone and I did not want to risk it possibly doing damage.  Before I got up to sign off on this entry the candle had been relit (on its own). Just a thought I wanted to share.

Holding to the Faith,
Connie Black
Usher Guild

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Prayer Group

Deacon Novella Lawrence
The Christ Church Prayer Group has resumed their regular weekly meetings. We gather each Wednesday evening at 7:15 p.m. in the Vestry room, followed by a brief service in the church.

We invite anyone who would like to offer intercessory prayers and reflect on the Holy Scriptures to join us each week at this time.  It is a special time, midweek, to experience again the presence of Jesus. Our prayers will also be offered for the peace, stability and future of the Parish.

The Great Chili "Cook-Off" at Christ Church

The pungent smell of homemade chili filled the church as anxious parishioners waited for the service to end so they could be a part of the Christ Church Chili “Cook-Off” on October 4. A variety of tasty entries awaited one and all as they voted for “Hottest Chili” and “Best Chili”

Congratulations to our winners: Tina Colucci for “Hottest Chili” and to Eva Marie Black for the “Best Chili.”

A good time was had by all and monies raised went to the Breast Cancer Society.

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Around the Parish

Nancy Reiersen
Things are really starting to get busy at Christ Church these days and the parish calendar continues to fill with fundraisers, concerts and events for the entire family.

Congratulations to our warden, Kirstin Swanson Basso on her new position as Director of Development at the Snug Harbor Cultural Center and Botanical Garden.

It’s nice to have Angela Lindsay (daughter of Debbie Lindsay) back with us again after spending the entire summer in England with her relatives. We’ve missed you, Angela!

We have so many talented cooks and bakers in our midst here at Christ Church. Congratulations to Lisa Rhoades who took it one step further and recently won the $100 First Prize in the 2015 Blue Hill (Maine) Fair blueberry muffin contest. Obviously we’ll be looking for samples of these award-winning muffins in the very near future

Kudos to those who organized and performed in last month’s Dinner and Jazz Evening at Christ Church. We have some talented folks in this parish, and it was such a pleasure to hear our own Karlus Trapp and Kevin Herbert (the son of Deacon Novella.) A great time was had by all!

Paul Smith, our Verger and thespian, recently appeared as God in Sundog Theater’s production of “Adam and Eve.” Paul is well-known in the theater community here on Staten Island and we hope to have the opportunity to see him in action in future events.

And a brief reminder: the Thursday morning Eucharist service is held every week at 11 a.m. Our thanks to Fr. Richard Marchand of Church of the Ascension for being with us to celebrate.

That’s all for now but please be sure to check out the Tower Chimes for info on all of the exciting events that are planned for the remainder of this year.

A Prayer Attributed to St. Francis

Lord, make us instruments of  your peace.
Where there is hatred, let us sow love; where there is injury, pardon;
where there is discord, union;
where there is doubt, faith;
where there is despair, hope;
where there is darkness, light;
where there is sadness, joy.
Grant that we may not so much seek to be consoled as to console; to be  understood as to understand;
to be loved as to love.
For it is in giving that we receive;
it is in pardoning that we are pardoned; and it is in dying that we are born to eternal life. Amen.

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