VBC: Holy Week for The Formation Team
Laura Sargent, Elizabeth Walker, and Kathea Yarnell
As we journeyed through a week of Vacation Bible Camp, we were struck by a phrase that Kate used to describe the week. She called it “Holy Week for the Formation Team.” This comparison was apt. Like Holy Week, we worked for weeks and months to prepare for several complex and significant events (our afternoons of camp). Like Holy Week, there were many people involved in the execution of and celebration within the week (to be exact 53 Campers, 16 Youth Leaders, and 29 Adult Leaders). And, like Holy Week, participants finished the week (at VBC Sunday) with a sense of joy and abundance in our community and from our faith.
The arc of VBC is a large one. It wasn’t just our campers who heard God’s call. But it was also youth and adults who led and parishioners who donated items for our service project and for our delicious snacks. And it isn’t just people from Epiphany who participated. We had campers, youth leaders, and adults from neighboring churches, as well several friends and relatives of parishioners (30% of our campers were Epiphany visitors.). The excitement and exuberance on our campus during VBC week was palpable, and it was a gift to both plan and to experience it. Thank you to all who were part of this holy week!
Click here for more photo highlights from the week: https://tinyurl.com/VBCpics
Get me to the Church on time!
Swedish Seafair Triathlon & Kids Triathlon
Click here for information about the races, road closures, and events.
Help Needed for Madrona K-8 Playground Facelift
Our mission on August 20th is to paint new lines and patterns on the asphalt for the new playground at Madrona K-8 School. The PTA will provide designs chalked onto the fresh asphalt as well as paint and other supplies. There will also be some gardening chores on the side (moving wood chips, etc. to prepare for equipment installation). We just need to provide the muscle!
Small Group Ministry Update
As I prepare to take leave of Epiphany Parish this summer, there are certain tasks and areas of ministry which are being transitioned to and cared for by a number of staff members and parishioners. One of the significant areas of ministry to be stewarded is Small Groups. About six years ago, Doyt tasked me creating a ministry of small groups at Epiphany. In fits and starts, with much trial and error, that ministry has grown to where we are today: 17 active groups meeting weekly or bi-weekly with approximately 140 people participating.
While growing this ministry, I attended a conference for small group ministers at Saddleback Church in Southern California and learned a great deal. Brooke Bascom graciously agreed to accompany me to the conference and we brought back with us lots of ideas, excitement, and energy with which to infuse the ministry of small groups on our campus. From that point forward, Brooke has been a collaborator in this ministry; a steady sounding board for ideas, an assistant in establishing new groups, and a champion of groups.
As we move into this time of transition, so does Brooke in her leadership role of this ministry. I am grateful to Brooke for our time working together. Thank you.
Marsha Crockett has now agreed to step into this role in a new capacity and for that I am also grateful. Please see Marsha’s words below and know that the ministry of small groups at Epiphany is in good hands and will continue as strong as ever.
One of the most influential elements of my spiritual formation has been the practice of connecting to a small group of believers throughout most of my adult life. That’s nearly 40 years of meeting week to week with a committed group of people where we learn to share real life in the context of our faith. This is where I become more aware of God’s presence and grace in my life. My small groups have prayed with me during seasons of loss and seasons of gain. Together we have built a spiritual history that has bound us together in life-long friendships. Above all, it’s where I’ve come to understand what it means to grow in intimacy with Christ through his church.
I could go on about why a small group matters (not to mention the fact that Jesus modeled small group relationship within his own ministry), but let me say it simply: Small groups are the heartbeat of the faith community. I like the words of Richard Foster who writes, “This kind of living communion does not just fall on our heads. We must desire it and seek it out. We must order our lives in particular ways.”
At Epiphany, one of those “particular ways” is in the amazing gift of a thriving small group ministry that has been well tended and established over the years. Today we have 17 active small groups and others ready to launch in the coming weeks. This is perhaps the highest (or deepest) expression of our belief that “Wherever you are on your spiritual journey you have a place at Epiphany.”
I’m delighted to move into this support role to our existing groups, in partnership with Doyt to help you find the perfect group if you don’t already have one. You can reach me at the email below, or through the church office, or find me on most any Sunday morning to talk about joining a group of like-minded folks ready to connect and grow together in faith.
Blessings in abundance,
A special appeal to support our YWCA backpack drive benefiting homeless teens.
Lots of Back-To-School sales going on now!
My name is Jennifer Alviar and I am sending out a friendly reminder and special appeal to support our YWCA backpack drive benefiting homeless teens. Our beloved parishioner, Ann McCurdy, has done a fabulous job in previous years to successfully manage this backpack drive. Thanks to her organizational talents and your generosity, our Epiphany Parish backpack drive has steadily increased from 60 backpacks to the latest total of 85 backpacks.
This year Ann has asked me to step in and help on this backpack drive while her family is on summer vacation. In my recent role with VBC as the social outreach service leader, I have witnessed first hand the incredible outpour of support that you have demonstrated in donating hygiene supplies to support Syrian refugees. Thanks to your amazing efforts, our 50 VBC campers created 100 hygiene kits that will make a positive impact in the lives of Syrian refugees.
Between Syrian refugees abroad and our local homeless teens in Seattle, we are embodying God’s call for love and justice to help our neighbors everywhere. This year, let’s aim to supply 100 backpacks so that our homeless teens receive the necessary support to reach their educational goals. This is only 15 backpacks more than the previous 85 backpacks pledged last year.
Below are some key dates to keep in mind for our backpack drive:
Now through August 20: Collect backpack supplies and/or send funds to Chinn Eap.
Sunday, August 20: All backpack donations and funds are due.
Saturday, August 26: Children and adult volunteers needed any time from 1-5pm in the youth group room of Christie House basement to set up tables and sort backpack supplies. This is a great family-friendly summer service project for kids of all ages.
Sunday, August 27: Children and adult volunteers needed at 10am during Everybody Hour to stuff backpacks with school supplies in the youth group room.
Monday, August 28: Adult volunteers needed to drive backpacks to the YWCA drop off location between 7am – 4pm located at 2301 South Jackson St., Seattle, 98144 (Lower level on the corner between Jackson and 23rd.)
Thank you in advance for making a meaningful difference in the lives of homeless teens and supporting their educational goals as they prepare for back to school this fall! Please feel free to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions.
Each teenager will receive:
* 1 backpack (teenager appropriate!)
* 1.5″ 3-ring binder
* 8 tab dividers for binder
* 4 spiral notebooks, college rule, 70 ct.
* 1 filler paper, college rule, 120/ct.
* 1 index cards, 3×5, ruled 100 ct., white 1 box
* #2 pencils, 12/pk
* 1 box colored pencils, 12/pk
* 3 medium blue or black pens
* 6 highlighters, chisel-tip, assorted colors
* 1 fabric pencil case w/3 grommets
* 10″x6″ 1 glue stick, .28 oz
* 2 invisible tapes, .75 x 1296″
* 1 pencil sharpener, double barrel
* 1 USB Flash Drive
How can you help? It’s easy-just two simple steps!
1. Purchase your donations and bring them to the Christie House Office by Sunday, August 20.
You can provide either:
a. A fully provisioned backpack, or
b. Some of the items listed above, or
c. A donation to help us pay for a backpack
2. Email Jennifer Alviar (email@example.com) with what you will donate. This really helps us keep track and not have too much of one item and too little of another.
Donate Socks to Teen Feed and NightWatch
The Epiphany Summer Concert Series and Social Outreach are teaming up this July.
We encourage you to bring a donation of white athletic socks to each concert. A large container will be available for drop off.
Ann Beck for Social Outreach
A Message from our new Interim Music Director
Dear Epiphany Folk,
Summer greetings to you! I wanted to write to you straight away to express my profound gratitude for the warm welcome to Epiphany. Since day one I have been met with kindness, love, incredible hospitality, and, of course, this gorgeous weather. What a welcome!
There are many exciting times to look forward to this choir season, but I am particularly keen to get to know each and every one of you, listen to your stories, and share moments of fellowship and conversation and prayer. It is truly a blessing to be at Epiphany. My spiritual journey led me here, and I’ve found a place at Epiphany.
With much thanks and every good wish,
Scrapbooking Affinity Group
Everyone had such a good time, we’re doing it again!
July 29 at 5:30 in the Fireside Room
Do you have boxes of photos and memorabilia you’ve been meaning to organize? Now is your chance! Please join us for an evening of scrapbooking and fellowship. All are welcome, whether you are an accomplished scrap booker, want to organize a box of photos, work on journaling, or just come see what it’s about! Please contact Jessica Yates, (206) 931-5119, email JRYates@live.com.
…the icons on the altar were written during VBC by our campers. Katrina Hawking set up the Formation Office as an icon-painting studio and many of our 53 campers rotated into the space to paint during the week. The images of the Prophet Samuel, Saint Esther, The Virgin Mary and the Angel Gabriel at the Annunciation, Saint Peter and Saint Andrew, and Saint Lydia were central to our Bible stories for each day. And, the process of quietly writing icons was also a way that campers were invited to consider our theme: Hearing God’s Call.
Seventh Sunday after Pentecost
Psalm 139: 1-11, 22-23
or Wisdom of Solomon 12:13, 16-19
Click here to view Prayer List