All posts by Jason Franklin

Adult Formation for Fall 2020

Formation continues at St. Paul’s with several opportunities to explore faith, race, and community. We will continue classes online for now as we move closer to in-person opportunities.

We are also excited to announce that adult forums will move to Sundays starting September 13! Join us on Zoom for classes for adults from 11 am – 12 pm.  Schedule follows.

[tribe_events view=”list” category=”formation”]

Outreach Update: Aug. 14, 2020

During these unprecedented times, Outreach at St. Paul’s remains committed to being a community partner with our neighbors, particularly our neighbors with housing and food needs. We will continue to safely provide food and financial assistance in the upcoming weeks and here is how you can be a part of these ministries:

1. We are continuing to partner with the Salvation Army’s Center of Hope Family Shelter throughout the summer. We will provide dinner every Thursday night for all shelter guests. The signups are listed below for each week. We are only dropping off the food to their kitchen, not staying to serve. Here are the August and September signups:

August 20th: https://www.signupgenius.com/go/60b094ca9ab28aafb6-820

August 27th: https://www.signupgenius.com/go/60b094ca9ab28aafb6-827

September 3rd/10th/17th/24th: https://www.signupgenius.com/go/9040d45aaad2eaa8-center

2. St. Paul’s has committed $5000.00 toward the Cook Elementary fund that supports meals and school supplies for students and families in need. Cook is our longtime neighbor, and we are thrilled to be able to contribute to the needs of over 100 students and their families during these unprecedented times. For more information about this collaboration please contact Rev. Nancy Vaders at nvaders@stpauls-ws.org

3. The 2020 St. Paul’s Stedman Grant recipients have been selected. The Stedman Grant was established in 1931 to provide funding to organizations and projects that benefit the residents of Forsyth County in the area of health, both physical and mental, on advice from the Outreach Committee and Vestry of St. Paul’s Episcopal Church.

In total, $69,000.00 was distributed between these six organizations:

  • Samaritan Ministries: Grant money awarded to Project Cornerstone, an intensive onsite treatment program for homeless men in recovery.
  • Forsyth Jail and Prison Ministries: Grant money awarded to the inmate counseling program and chaplaincy services.
  • Trellis Supportive Care: Grant money awarded to support the Veteran’s counseling program.
  • Hawley House: Grant money awarded to support the only women’s licensed inpatient recovery program in our city.
  • Winston-Salem Street School: The street school is a non-profit high school for nontraditional students. Grant money was awarded to a collaboration effort with Crossnore to provide trauma training for teachers and staff to help better understand the needs of students who have experienced childhood trauma.
  • Crisis Control Pharmacy: Established in 1987, Crisis Control Ministry’s Pharmacy was the first licensed free pharmacy in North Carolina. Today, it is the largest free pharmacy in Forsyth County.

4. We anticipate crisis financial needs in our community to steadily increase during this time. Job and food insecurities are a byproduct of the necessary precautionary measures taking place to prevent the spread of the Covid-19 virus, and assisting those with acute financial needs is an important part of our outreach ministries. We continue to offer financial assistance to those in crisis via phone interviews and referrals. If you would like to make a donation or learn more about our financial assistance program, please contact Rev. Nancy Vaders at nvaders@stpauls-ws.org

Thank you all so much! Your generosity and support during these uncertain and ever-changing times has been extraordinary, and I’m so proud to be a partner with you in the Gospel call to love and serve our neighbors.

Rev. Nancy Vaders, Director of Outreach Ministries

Vestry Elections: Please Be Informed and Participate

What Changes Will Occur?

At this year’s Annual Meeting, the parish voted to create a new process for vestry elections. In 2021, our parish will move from contested elections to a proposed slate.  Your vestry is excited about this change, as we believe the new process will help the Nominating Committee meet its goals to have:

  • Capable, committed vestry members who want to serve the parish
  • An inclusive vestry that represents a broad cross-section of our parish
  • Vestry members that represent the gifts and talents we think we need
  • A process that encourages capable, faithful members to agree to stand for election

Some things will remain the same. A nominating committee will still discern which candidates will stand for election, additional nominations will still be accepted, and people will continue to vote at the Annual Meeting.

Some things will change:

  • The Nominating Committee will now be composed of both current vestry and non-vestry members.
  • The Nominating Committee will present a slate of candidates for vestry equal to the number of open positions to be filled (four, not eight)
  • Additional candidates may be proposed up to 12 days before the vestry election. After that date, nominations will be closed.

Who Can Serve on the Nominating Committee? When will they be chosen?

This year, we will have a seven-member Nominating Committee. The four (4) retiring vestry members will serve on the committee, as they have in the past. Vestry will seek three (3) non-vestry members to serve. Vestry hopes that parishioners will nominate, or self-nominate, if they are willing to serve on the Nominating Committee. 

We hope to have the Nominating Committee appointed by the first of September, so please send in your suggestions by August 15, 2020 or earlier. Please ask people if they are willing to serve before sending in a nomination.

Everyone on the Nominating Committee must be eligible to vote in vestry elections, meaning they must be enrolled Confirmed Communicants in Good Standing sixteen (16) years of age or older. In other words, if one can vote, one can serve. Once on the Nominating Committee, a person must “rest” for three (3) years before serving on this committee again. The final selection for non-vestry members will be made by those vestry members NOT on the Nominating Committee.

What happens next?

After the Nominating Committee is selected, this committee will solicit names for vestry service. This will happen in early fall.  The Committee hopes to have its recommended nominees by early December. By January 10, 2021 at the latest, the names, bios and photos of the nominees will be published for the parish. This will be at least four (4) weeks prior to the Annual Meeting. 

Should anyone want to propose additional candidates to run for vestry, names would need to be submitted by Tuesday, January 26, 2021 at 5:00. The Annual Meeting and vote are currently scheduled for February 7, 2021.

Upcoming Dates to Remember:

Submit Names for Nominating Committee Service:  July-August 15, 2020

Submit Names for Vestry Service September-October 31, 2020

Outreach Update

During these unprecedented times, Outreach at St. Paul’s remains committed to being a community partner with our neighbors, particularly our neighbors with housing and food needs. We will continue to safely provide food and financial assistance in the upcoming weeks and here is how you can be a part of these ministries:

1. Summer Enrichment Update: Due to the pandemic, we were unable to have our traditional in-house Summer Enrichment program this year. Instead, we will be doing Summer Enrichment “To-Go” and delivering lunches and enrichment activities to 50 campers each day for the next two weeks. Please keep the campers and their families in your prayers, and thank you to the Summer Enrichment committee and staff for their creativity, flexibility, and dedication. Look for pictures on our St. Paul’s Facebook page next week!

2. We are continuing to partner with the Salvation Army’s Center of Hope Family Shelter throughout the summer. We will provide dinner every Thursday night for all shelter guests. The signups are listed below for each week. We are only dropping off the food to their kitchen, not staying to serve. Here are the July signups:

July 30: https://www.signupgenius.com/go/60b094ca9ab28aafb6-730

August 6: https://www.signupgenius.com/go/60b094ca9ab28aafb6-86coh

August 13: https://www.signupgenius.com/go/60b094ca9ab28aafb6-813

August 20: https://www.signupgenius.com/go/60B094CA9AB28AAFB6-820

3. On Thursday, July 30th from 5:30-7:30 pm you are invited to join the “Drive Through Donation” event at Christ’s Beloved Community food pantry. They will have volunteers who will take it from the cars to keep within all safe social distance guidelines, and volunteers wear masks and gloves. The address for the pantry is 3205 South Main St. Winston-Salem, NC 27127.

If you would like to donate, but cannot drive to the pantry on 7/30 then please email Rev. Nancy Vaders for pickup options at nvaders@stpauls-ws.org. The food list, as well as other details, can be found here: https://www.facebook.com/events/315696686495808/

4. We anticipate crisis financial needs in our community to steadily increase during this time. Job and food insecurities are a byproduct of the necessary precautionary measures taking place to prevent the spread of the Covid-19 virus, and assisting those with acute financial needs is an important part of our outreach ministries. We continue to offer financial assistance to those in crisis via phone interviews and referrals. If you would like to make a donation or learn more about our financial assistance program, please contact Rev. Nancy Vaders at nvaders@stpauls-ws.org

Thank you all so much! Your generosity and support during these uncertain and ever-changing times has been extraordinary, and I’m so proud to be a partner with you in the Gospel call to love and serve our neighbors.

Rev. Nancy Vaders

Director of Outreach Ministries

Introducing “Well Read, Well Fed”

Read Write Spell will launch Well Read, Well Fed on July 1. Well Read, Well Fed Forsyth was created in response to the disruption in classroom literacy instruction created by COVID-19. In addition to missing out on literacy instruction, children do not have access to books from school or from the public library. Well Read, Well Fed Forsyth is a coordinated collaboration that provides books and literacy resources to the families that receive food from our partners. We will follow the county’s food distribution networks to ensure that we serve the most vulnerable elementary school children in Forsyth County.

Each child that we reach will receive a bag of  3-5 age-appropriate, new books in conjunction with the meals that they receive. We will also ensure that the books are culturally relevant because research shows that children read better and read more often when they have culturally relevant books.

Wishlist: https://www.bookmarksnc.org/wishlist/9?fbclid=IwAR1skDRPjHpXsgnv-6ZUK_NG2RmX8vf7ehvTPSzhhBBivBznaJzMbWigIvg

Outreach Update: June 29, 2020

During these unprecedented times, Outreach at St. Paul’s remains committed to being a community partner with our neighbors, particularly our neighbors with housing and food needs. We will continue to safely provide food and financial assistance in the upcoming weeks and here is how you can be a part of these ministries:

1.  We are continuing to partner with the Salvation Army’s Center of Hope Family Shelter throughout the summer. We will provide dinner every Thursday night for all shelter guests. The signups are listed below for each week. We are only dropping off the food to their kitchen, not staying to serve. Here are the July signups:

July 9: https://www.signupgenius.com/go/60B094CA9AB28AAFB6-79dinner

July 16: https://www.signupgenius.com/go/60B094CA9AB28AAFB6-716

July 23: https://www.signupgenius.com/go/60B094CA9AB28AAFB6-723

2. On Thursday, July 30th from 5:30-7:30 pm you are invited to join the “Drive Through Donation” event at Christ’s Beloved Community food pantry. They will be collecting donations on Thursday, May 21st from 5:00-7:00 pm. They will have volunteers who will take it from the cars to keep within all safe social distance guidelines, and volunteers wear masks and gloves. The address for the pantry is 3205 South Main St. Winston-Salem, NC 27127.

If you would like to donate, but cannot drive to the pantry on 7/30 then please email Rev. Nancy Vaders for pickup options at nvaders@stpauls-ws.org. The food list, as well as other details, can be found here: https://www.facebook.com/events/315696686495808/

3. We anticipate crisis financial needs in our community to steadily increase during this time. Job and food insecurities are a byproduct of the necessary precautionary measures taking place to prevent the spread of the Covid-19 virus, and assisting those with acute financial needs is an important part of our outreach ministries. We continue to offer financial assistance to those in crisis via phone interviews and referrals. If you would like to make a donation or learn more about our financial assistance program, please contact Rev. Nancy Vaders at nvaders@stpauls-ws.org

Thank you all so much! Your generosity and support during these uncertain and ever-changing times have been extraordinary, and I’m so proud to be a partner with you in the Gospel call to love and serve our neighbors.

Rev. Nancy Vaders, Director of Outreach Ministries

Phased return to in person gatherings

Greetings St. Paul’s,

Two months ago, our Diocesan bishops issued a pastoral directive in response to COVID-19 asking the parishes of the Diocese of North Carolina to suspend public worship, in-person gatherings, and in-person pastoral care for eight weeks. As we reach the end of those eight weeks, they have issued a new, four-stage plan for re-opening our churches and returning to public worship. These stages move, mostly, in concert with our governor’s three phases for re-opening the state, and both use specific downward trends in public health markers as indicators for when to transition from one stage to the next. I commend the full document, outlining all four stages, to your reading. 

For the sake of this letter, however, I want to highlight specifically Stages One and Two. They represent “what happens next” and help provide a sense of what our summer will look like at St. Paul’s. As a reminder, the broad strokes of these two stages are as follows:

Stage One:

Where we are now. Worship Gatherings and church meetings are happening online. The Church staff is working from home while pastoral care is offered over the phone and online.

Stage Two:

During Stage Two, worship gatherings can expand indoor participation to 25 people (35 people outdoors) in spaces where social distancing can be practiced. Masks, as well as other tracing and screening protocols, must be observed, and the Holy Eucharist may be offered in the “spiritual communion” paradigm we have become familiar with during Holy Week. The church offices can re-open for staff, but social distancing, sanitation, and mask protocols must be practiced. Also, groups of smaller than 15 may consider gathering in properly ventilated church spaces that are large enough to accommodate appropriate social distancing and using mask protocols.

The earliest we will be transitioning from Stage One to Stage Two in the Diocese of North Carolina is now July 1. This is an estimate rather than a fixed date, but our bishops are hopeful that conditions will allow for it. Which means three things for us today:

1.) Sunday Morning Streaming Will Continue

We have had great success in our live streaming thanks to the talents and dedication of Jason Franklin as well as the generous parishioners who loaned us equipment. It is clear now, however, that live streaming is something we need to figure out how to continue indefinitely. So, the church has already enhanced our internet service, and we are allocating resources to upgrade and expand our video equipment. This will allow for live streaming to remain part of St. Paul’s common life both now and when worshippers start returning to the nave.

2.) We Are Making a Plan for Re-Opening

Part of the Diocesean directive requires each parish to develop a strategy for opening once Stage Two arrives. As you can imagine, this has a lot of moving parts and will require careful discernment. The clergy and staff are currently working on that plan as it relates to both work and worship so that, when it is time to safely re-open St. Paul’s, we will be ready. As July 1 nears, we will let you know more.

3.) The Church Staff Plans to Return to the Office in July

Stage Two marks the first time that the staff may return to work in the office. How we do this safely has yet to be determined, but it will be part of the plan we submit to the Diocese. Again, we will let you know more before July 1.

Finally, I want to recognize that for some of you, this information will feel comforting because there is a plan. However, for others of you, it will feel like the dropping of a boom. Two months ago, we had no idea how long this would last or how pronounced the impact of COVID-19’s would be. The truth is, we still do not, but I know we all hoped it would be better by now. The fact that it is not presents another level of grieving and adapting to another new normal, which takes its toll on our hearts. So, never forget that God is in this with us, and though it may be a while before we are all back together, none of us are in this alone! We are St. Paul’s, and this is what we do.

Easter Peace and much love friends,

Dixon+

Fifth Week of Easter, 2020