We may not be able to come together for worship, yet that does not prevent us from coming together in other ways. For wardens, that starts with weekly conference calls with Rev'd Val to check in with each other, assess the parish's current state, look over our to-do list and see what can be done.
Many thanks to Peter H. and Brian H. for our renewed red benches in front of the church. Do stop by and sit awhile to enjoy their work, our pollination garden and grounds. While there, take some time to ponder how your involvement with St. Anne's has shaped your approach to life. You may even get a different perspective on this idea by spending time on any one of our benches. How can you get more out of your experience with our community?
Again we want to thank everyone for their continued support during these times when gathering is not possible. We recently provided financial information to the Diocese so that an application may be made for the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy. Based on these calculations, St. Anne's would qualify for the subsidy. The Diocese, as our payroll administrator, will receive the money from the government and credit our payroll account, requesting the balance from our bank account. This subsidy will certainly assist us in paying our monthly bills.
Our faith in God is a real anchor in how we treat each other and how we share the abundance of resources at our disposal. In the May 2020 Huron Church News (linked on our website's main page) Ven. Kim Van Allen speaks of stewardship in a time of pandemic that should be our approach at all times. She writes "We are doing what we can to support one another, proclaim the gospel, worship at home, feed the hungry, comfort those who mourn and keep the faith....You see, stewardship is really what we decide to do with what we have. Whether we are talking about your time, energy, skills, physical ability, property, or money - what you do with what you have is stewardship....Your gift of time, energy, and money may be different now, but will contribute to the ministry offered by your church."
How are we stewarding our congregation these days? We have a small number of parishioners who check-in with fellow parishioners by phone. Our online prayer service is put together by Steve Wolsley with contributions from up to a dozen households from both St. Anne's and Trinity who record their part of the service. It has been a learning curve for not only Steve with the new software, but for others as they contribute to the final service offering. This has been a wonderful gift thanks to all the volunteers. Most recently, packages of crafts and other goodies have been delivered to the children of the parish. A delight and welcome diversion in these times of staying home. We want to acknowledge the hard work of Jackie W. to keep us all in masks, and the dozens of deliveries by Rev'd Val getting them out when requested. You will have noticed as well that the News This Week is now available three times per week with clergy reflections and other news. Newsletters and prayer services are also available in hard copy from the mailbox by the parish hall front door in case you can't access it from our website. Our sign is also our voice to the community and you will notice different messages and graphics posted for these times.
These days we need to stay apart but our ministry to others continues, whether to family or friends or the person we safely meet on the street. Let's be sure to pause and create that moment in time when we can rely on that still small voice and gift of the Holy Spirit that gives true meaning to all our actions.
Marg Wolsley, Keith Brooks, Sophie Skaith