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Category : St. Stephen News

Summer Session of Room in the Inn begins July 3

On July 3, we’ll begin the summer session of Room in the Inn (RITI). This marks a full 11 years that St. Stephen has been hosting homeless guests since RITI was initiated in Fort Worth by St. Stephen and Broadway Baptist in November 2007.

During the months of July and August, traditionally our hottest months of the year, up to 15 men who are currently homeless will join us each Tuesday night/Wednesday morning for an overnight stay, two warm meals, a sack lunch for the next day—and most important—our hospitality.

To properly execute RITI each week requires approximately 30 volunteers. Volunteer opportunities include:

• Setup (beds/ dinner tables) (3:00 – 4:30pm Tues)
• Drivers (from/ to East Lancaster) (4:15– 5:15pm Tues; 7:00 – 8:00am Wed)
• Pre-preparation of dinner & delivery to the church kitchen (by 4pm Tues)
• Final preparation/ serving of dinner & cleanup at church (4:00 – 7:00pm Tues)
• Hosts—visiting with guests before/during/after dinner, or breakfast (5:00 – 9:00pm Tues; 6:30 – 7:00am Wed)
• Supervision of sack lunch preparation at church (6:30 – 7:30pm Tues)
• Innkeepers—sleeping overnight at church with our guests (9:00pm Tues – 6:00am Wed)
• Pre-preparation of breakfast & delivery to the church kitchen (by 9:00pm Tues)
• Final preparation/ serving of breakfast & cleanup at church (5:45 – 8:00am Wed)
• Laundry—washing bed linens/ towels/ wash cloths & delivering back to church (Wed pm – Tues am)

We welcome participation by everyone—St. Stephen members, visitors & friends—and know it will be a meaningful experience for you.

You can sign up for any of these jobs for a specific date in July or August online via Sign Up Genius:  OR contact Wendy Larmour or Mike Tyson.

Thanks to Dan Fergus, who saw a problem and was determined to promptly fix it— and thanks to the generosity of members and friends of St. Stephen, who funded and helped to construct—we now have collapsible bed frames that enable our guests (and innkeepers!) to sleep elevated from the floor at a normal bed height!  We know this will provide a more comfortable experience for our guests, and hope it will encourage more to volunteer as innkeepers, as it is now easier to get in and out of bed!  Thank you, Dan and all who helped make this happen!

MANY THANKS to all who continue to make Room in the Inn a priority mission for St. Stephen!

Youth Garage Sale, June 29-30

We will accept Garage Sale Stuff the week of June 24, 10:00 am – 5:00pm on Monday-Thursday. Thanks for your patience. Otherwise, we pay movers to bring it from Sanctu-
ary to Parish Hall. We need un-packers, movers, organizers, pricers. Come on over when you are available!

The actual sale is June 29 from 9:00 am – 5:00 pm and June 30 from 9 pm – 12:00 pm.

Buy a Bed for our Room in the Inn Guests!

by Dan Fergus

Remember when we were college-age kids?  It was fun and cool to have your mattress on the floor.  Well, most of us aren’t in college anymore and sleeping on the floor really isn’t any fun at all.  So, after 10 years of Room in the Inn (RITI), we decided it was time to get ‘real’ beds.

Some of the RITI churches have spaces where they can keep beds up all of the time, but we don’t.  So the first challenge was to have something that was easy to setup and easy to take down.  They also need to be sturdy. After all, many of our guests (and a few of the innkeepers) are not small people and we want the bed to come apart only when it is supposed to.

After several design attempts, we have a winner.  It is one piece with slats that are connected with nylon.  It is easy to setup and take down and is very sturdy and stable.

The sample bed was used by a blind guest the last night of the winter session.  When he was helped to the bed and sat down he rejoiced, “Oh praise Jesus.  This is wonderful!”

Now, we need to build 16 more beds, or a total of 17 (15 for guests and 2 for innkeepers).  The cost for each bed is estimated to be $125.00. So we need to raise a total of $2,125.  All funds will be used to buy wood, slats, hinges and screws.  Labor will be provided by church friends and members.  We’ll be starting the work around the first week of June and hope to have all beds funded before then.

If we are fortunate enough to raise more than the total cost of the beds, we plan to designate these contributions for future projects, such as possibly adding a shower and/or washer and dryer for our RITI guests to use.

Would you buy a bed for a RITI guest?

Members generously give to Lenten Mission Opportunities

The Mission Committee can’t begin to thank you enough!  Our congregation has responded with such generosity to both the Lent clothes collection and the One Great Hour of Sharing, we are overwhelmed with joy.  To date, we have collected over $1,500 for the Disaster Relief Fund, the recipient of the One Great Hour funds, and we have delivered close to 40 bags of clothes to South Side Alliance of Churches (SCAC) for their clients.
But wait, we’re not through yet!!  May is our month to deliver toiletries to SCAC and they have expressed a specific need for personal paper hygiene products.  This includes toilet paper, tissues, and feminine hygiene items.  Please deliver your donations to the boxes located in Parish Hall and the Narthex.

Holy Week Events

March 25, Palm Sunday
8:30 am – Worship and Communion
10:45 am – Donkey Procession on Front Lawn
11:00 pm – Worship

March 26, 27, & 28
12:00 pm – Holy Week Devotional and Lunch

March 28
5:15 pm – Holy Week Service for Children and Family

March 29, Maundy Thursday
12:00 pm – Maundy Thursday Communion Service in Chapel  (Lunch follows)
7:00 pm – Maundy Thursday Worship with Communion in Sanctuary

March 30, Good Friday
12:15 pm – Worship in Sanctuary (Lunch follows)
6:00 pm – Paschal Vigil starts in Chapel.  Each service lasts 20–30 minutes.

  • 6:00 pm – Light
  • 8:00 pm – Shadows (Tenebrae Service)

March 31, Holy Saturday
Paschal Vigil Continues

  • 8:00 am – Dawning
  • 9:00 am – Light
  • 12:00 pm – Resignation
  • 3:00 pm – Commendation
  • 6:00 pm – Hope (Garden Labyrinth meditation)
  • 9:00 pm – Holy Fire
  • Following “Holy Fire” – Paschal processional and Paschal feast

April 1, Easter Sunday
10:30 am – Easter Egg Hunt
11:00 am – Worship and Communion
12:30 pm – Butterfly Release on Front Lawn

Wednesday Night Family Nights Starting Wednesday, Feb. 21; 5 – 7:30 pm

The Staff has been considering this idea for quite a while and is hoping to kick this off a week after Ash Wednesday on February 21. Our goal is to provide activities or study for various age groups including a simple supper. We’ll continue Children’s Choir at it’s normal time and add supper (where you can come eat when it’s good for you), Children in Mission— weekly simple mission projects for kids; Youth Homework Time—get those assignments done here; and an Adult Bible Study—different from Sunday morning or Wednesday Bible Study. A nursery will be available for those who need it.

We’re hoping other activities can be re-scheduled to Wednesday’s also, but are waiting for discussions and voting to happen first. Hope you’ll consider this fellowship.

New Adult Sunday School Class “How the Bible Addresses Moral Injury!” Starts February 4, 9:45 a.m.

Moral injury arises from the violation of a human being’s core moral convictions. It can damage good character and wreck personal moral identify and beliefs. This injury may lead to feelings of meaninglessness, shame, and despair resulting in inner anguish, alienation, addiction, self-harm, and suicide. Moral injury is an emerging area of trauma studies in religion, which highlights complex ambiguities of betrayal and personal culpability among perpetrators and victims of violence. Work on moral injury insists that communities are crucial to repair and recovery.

Moral injury is the subject of some of the most difficult passages of the Bible, including war, rape, slavery, murder, adultery, toxic leadership, and betrayal. Together we will read stories in the Old and New Testament that examine suffering and betrayal. We will look at these tough scriptures to identify instances of moral injury and look for circumstances of repair, recovery and reconciliation, as well as the failure of recovery.

The class will start February 4, 2018, led by Angela Springfield, 9:45 – 10:45 a.m. in the Northminster Room—above the Chapel on the second floor of the Education Building. Donuts are offered in Parish Hall from 9:25 – 9:45 a.m.

Searchers Adult Class Studies

Searchers Adult Class Studies Here is a list of upcoming Speakers for this unique Adult Sunday School Class:

January 28—Robert Simon con nues the “Origins of the Torah”

February 4—Brian Eaton talks on “Chris an Theologies in Other Religions”

February 11—Brian Eaton con nues “Chris an Theol- ogies in Other Religions”

February 18—Dr. Eric Cox, on of our own, speaks on “Trump Presidency”

Come join this class at 9:45 a.m. in the Eastminster Room. Donuts are o ered in the Parish Hall from 9:25—9:45 a.m.

Mission Opportunities in November & December

We need 75 Thanksgiving Baskets filled with $15 worth of food. We provide grocery sacks; you fill them. South Central Alliance of Churches distributes
to needy families in 76109, 76110, and 76104.

Christmas Angel Tree will be up Nov. 26—Dec. 10. Pick an angel and provide Christmas presents!