Parish Notes – April 02, 2017
OUR LECTORS — April (2nd) Ernst and Betty Schoen-Rene; (9th) Palm Sunday, Connie Snyder and Tebbie Collins; (13th) Maundy Thursday: Jane Birmingham, Judy Damron; (15th) Easter Eve: Adele Calcavecchio, Bill Clare, Judy Damron, Sheila France, John Meehan, Ernst and Betty Schoen-Rene; (16th) Easter, Judy Damron, Karen McGeeney; (23rd) Judy Damron and Sheila France; (30th) T.B.A. If you would like to serve as a lector, please speak to or call Judy Damron (334-9646).
THE CHALLENGE AND WITNESS OF SANCTUARY
Dear Sisters and Brothers in Christ,
When responding to an emergency it is sometimes necessary to act in a way that flies in the face of established custom, practice, conventions, norms, codes, rules and even civil ordinances and laws. For example, to save lives, a pilot may be forced to land a plane on the Hudson River.
In the event of a moral emergency, such as the current administration’s decision to aggressively enforce existing immigration laws, and to regularly do so at the expense of due process, in violation of basic human rights and dignity, with no consideration of either personal histories or the destructive consequences to people and their families, the intention to engage in acts of “civil disobedience” is not undertaken lightly, but seriously, deliberately, and in accordance with what is discerned to be God’s will. The appeal is made to a higher law, that, when acknowledged, becomes binding upon conscience. In good conscience can one really do other than place one self between a perceived aggressor and a potential victim?
During the holocaust, when German Christians hid Jews in their homes, they did so because they were morally compelled to do so, knowing full well that they were breaking the law. They also knew that they were placing themselves a risk, and in that case, even at risk for their own lives. While the situations are not equivalent, as the Nazi holocaust was an evil of a magnitude beyond comparison, it is not inappropriate to appreciate an analogy in these two disparate moments in history. But are not stepping outside the box, leaving secure places and comfort zones, and skating at the edge, reflections of the very essence of Christian life? Ours is not a cakewalk but the way of the cross.
Our decision to make our church a safe place for those under immediate threat brings with it the need to violate the existing order in a variety of ways. For example, creating even temporary “residential” space on our campus can be understood as violating certain building codes and city ordinances. Again, our insurance coverage is fashioned for ordinary church use that does not necessarily include “temporary” housing. Yet again, to hide people being pursued by federal agents or their surrogates is considered a crime in some circles.
So yes, in becoming a sanctuary church we make ourselves a bit more vulnerable and thereby share something of the lot and experience, albeit to a much lesser degree, of those among us who are most vulnerable. Hopefully we can learn to do this with a peace that is borne of faith rather than a fear of the “what if’s” and all the unknowns of an unchartered tomorrow.
This past Tuesday, Bishop Andy, came to Holy Cross/Santa Cruz for a meeting with all the priests and deacons serving in the mid-Hudson Region. Among the items on his agenda was the issue of Sanctuary. He told us that the bishops and the diocese are fully committed to making our wider Episcopal Church a Sanctuary Church. He encouraged us to incarnate this reality in our parishes to whatever extent we are able. He assured us that he would have our back in any such effort. He told me that he fully supports what our congregation is trying to effect in Ulster County, the City of Kingston and in our parish.
As we embark upon this road, it is critical that we appreciate the safety that is borne of silence. If we are into the business of protecting both those who are at risk and those who are caring for those at risk, it makes all the sense in the world to fly under the radar where and whenever possible. So talk about this with each other and with those whom you know are kindred spirits, but otherwise try to be mindful that it is really no one else’s business.
MATCHING GRANT – Two parishioners have generously offered a total of $6,000. for a Matching Grant. June 1 is the date when the money needs to be in. To date $750. has been given. Everyone is asked to prayerfully consider what their donation will be and to please give it in as soon as possible. There are marked envelopes on the small table as you enter the Church for this or simply write on your check Matching Grant. Many thanks.
COFFEE HOUR — Each week we enjoy light refreshments and fellowship after the service. When it’s your week, just bring a coffee cake or some other pastry-like item as well as something that is not sugary, such as some sort of fruit or cheese and crackers, etc. as an option for those of us who must or wish to stay away from sugar. Many thanks! If you cannot make your scheduled week, please feel free to switch with someone else. To be added to or deleted from the schedule, please notify Judy Damron. Schedule in April (2) Group — bilingual mass at 4:30 p.m. (9) Karen McGeeney (16) John Meehan (23) Ernst Schoen-Rene (30) Chuck Snyder; May (7) Carol Brown (14) Sheila France (21) Elaine Mertine (28) Herb Wilcox; June (4) Bob Dederick (11) George Allen (18) Mike Brandt (25) Connie Snyder.
LADIES NIGHT OUT — Our new format is working out really well – taking turns eating out or hosting the event at our homes. In April we’re going to have a night out, as we used to have. We’ll be dining at Guido’s Little Italy, off Broadway in Kingston to celebrate Betty Radell’s birthday. We’ll meet at 6:00 on Friday April 21. Call Carol Brown at 352-409-0734 to reserve your spot for the night.
Upcoming for May the event will be hosted at Connie Snyder’s house, 583 Swarte Kill Road in Esopus. We still need hosts for June and July, so contact Connie Snyder at 845-853-6068 or at firstname.lastname@example.org to reserve your commitment.
SOAP CLOSET DONATIONS — Thank you to everyone for your continuing donations, large and small, cash and kind. It is a huge help and is so appreciated. Betty Schoen-Rene.
SANCTUARY SPACE — This week the vestry decided to add a shower to the bathroom in the parish hall. A grant request was made to the Mid-Hudson Board of Managers for the necessary funds. We have been assured that these will be forthcoming. In the coming weeks we will be clearing some space above the sacristy, in choir loft and across from Madre’s office to accommodate a few beds.
I visited Holy Cross Monastery last week. There was a sign in the vestibule that conveyed the heart of the radical hospitality the Saint Benedict proposed for his monks. The sign read, “Receive every guest as you would receive Christ Himself.” Even with our given constraints, I would hope that such would be the embrace we would offer to those who may come to us seeking refuge.
The vestry also authorized the opening of another checking account under the title: Holy Cross Episcopal Church/Immigrants Defense Fund. We are convening a board of five non-parish members who will create the protocols for the fund, administer its business and engage in fund raising efforts. Thus far: Matt Verrilli, a Kingston business owner; Azer Khan, Kingston Mosque; Pastor Renee House, Old Dutch Church; Rick Mahler, Temple Emanuel and one more person yet to be identified, will serve as an advisory board for the fund. Sheila France and Chuck Krulis have been authorized to sign checks that the board approves for payment. The monies will be used to provide assistance to those at risk.
On Wednesday, the Rev. Michelle Meech, the Rector of St. John’s Episcopal Church, notified me that the vestry had approved making the Defense Fund the recipient of their Easter outreach offering.
THE KINGSTON INTERFAITH COUNCIL (KIC)— On Thursday of the week the newly forming KIC will hold its second meeting here at Holy Cross/Santa Cruz Church. Our parish has been instrumental in convening this body that now includes representatives from Christian, Jewish, Muslim and Unitarian congregations. It is our hope that this growing coalition of faith leaders will be able to bring its influence to bear on issues of justice that are at play in the wider community and the cooperative energy of our faithful communities to bear in works of mercy.
BIRTHDAYS — In April: (1st) Bill Clare, (04) Brigit Brandt; (14th) Chuck Snyder; (19th) Betty Radell; (22nd) Joe Buboltz; (27th) Vincent DeStasio; (28th) Ethan Jansen. In May: (1st) John Meehan; (8th) Bradley Boyd; (17th) Barbara Lee; (26th) Tebbie Collins.
ANNIVERSARIES — In May: (5th) Karen and John McGeeney. June (20th) Ernst and Betty Schoen-Rene.
MEMORIALS — In April: (12th) Eugene Radell (candle by Betty Radell and family); (16th) Hilda Carr; (29th) Allen Hamilton (DeFalco-Hamilton). In May: (14th) Wellington Silva (DeFalco- Hamilton); (21st) Shawn Frankowski (Sheila France); (29th) Anthony DeCicco (candle by Betty Radell and family). In June: (2nd) Joseph Radell (candle by Betty Radell and family); (22nd) Pamela Reed (candle by Judy Damron); (26th) Rudy Michlewski (candle by Faith Auriemmo).
Please continue to keep these people in your prayers: Michael Brandt, Richard Brandt (brother of Michael Brandt), Katie Brandt, Jamie Canipe (friend of Sheila France), Betty Baker Coombs (residing at the Infirmary), Gloria DeFalco Hamilton, Paul Hamilton, Maryann Donaldson (sister of Gloria DeFalco Hamilton), Maria Gagliardi (friend of Gloria DeFalco Hamilton), June Lamark, Richie McDonough (friend of Judy Damron), John McGeeney, Sandra Owen (friend of Tebbie Collins), B. J. Radell (daughter of Betty Radell), David Reed (son of Judy Damron), Paula Slater (niece of Betty Radell), Gloria Zoda (aunt of Gloria DeFalco Hamilton). Please continue to pray for peace and for all military personnel and civilians whose lives are impacted by war.
PARISH ORGANIZATIONS AND LEADERSHIP
Presiding Bishop — The Most Rev. Michael B. Curry
Bishop of New York — The Rt. Rev. Andrew M. L. Dietsche
Bishop Suffragan — The Rt. Rev. Allen K. Shin
Assisting Bishop – The Rt. Rev. Mary Glasspool
Priest in Charge, Holy Cross — Fr. Frank Alagna (845-332-8610)
Priest in Charge, Santa Cruz — Mo. Filomena Servellon (845-802-0166)
Seminarian in Residence — Steve Schunk (914-474-4330)
Volunteer Office Staff — John Boyd, Judy Damron, Chuck Krulis, Tebbie Collins
Wardens – Judy Damron (334-9646), Chuck Snyder (384-6174)
Sheila France (389-8560)
Anselmo Guerra (616-6592)
Isabel Hernandez (399-4428)
Chuck Krulis (339-3750)
Yvelisse Perez (347-666-6534)
Invited Member: Paula Perez-Francisco (430-8922)
Clerk of the Vestry: Sheila France
Officers: Finance: Tebbie Collins (338-4097)
Treasurer: Lisa Milhaven
Lay Eucharistic Ministers — Joe Buboltz, Esther Lemus,
Karen McGeeney, Rigo Vivas
Altar Guild — Katie Brandt (331-3259)
Building Use — Elaine Mertine and June Lamark (255-6619)
Ministers of Music — Arturo and Lia Nieto (594-8675)
Garden Club — Tebbie Collins (338-4097) & Connie Snyder (384-6174)
Parish House Thrift Shop — Sheila France (339-8560)
Soap Closet — Betty Schoen-Rene (340-1010)
Sunday School — Tebbie Collins (338-4097) & Esther Lemus (336-4679)
Bulletin — Karen McGeeney (331-1304)
Website — Connie Snyder (384-6174)