Announcements for the week of February 21, 2016


Members of St. Stephen’s (Joe Rutter, Shelley Boales, and Beth Bartley) attend the Columbus Lenten School with members of other area Episcopal Churches.  Joe, Shelley, and Beth are participating in the Dark Night of the Soul class, facilitated by Faith Perrizo (back to the camera).

Upcoming Congregational Activities

Sun, Feb. 21- after the 10:30am service: BREAD Team meeting

Fri, Feb. 26- 7pm -9pm EASE Gallery opening

Sat, Feb. 27 –10:00 am – 4:00 pm: Swap Shop for our Sisters –see Jeff Watters for details

Sun, Feb. 28 – after the 10:30 am service -ANNUAL MEETING and Potluck


Transition News

With all changes that are happening right now it would be easy to get the impression that something is wrong, but this is not the case at all.  One third of the vestry changes every year and it just happens that both my term as well as Cynthia’s is about to be completed.  Change seems to me to be normal and a good thing as it has the effect of renewal and passing leadership naturally.  Unlike after a political election, there will be continuation of our presence and whomever is elected will get the same benefits that the two of us had, some guidance from those who held the office immediately prior to our election as wardens of the church.  I have completely enjoyed my time on the vestry and have been blessed to be able to work with someone as caring and competent as Cynthia.


Like Cynthia said recently, we have not always agreed on everything, but we are after all Episcopalians, and our faith has given us the ability to seek to understand why we disagree.  When we have disagreed, which wasn’t that often, we actively listened to each other and that listening did not include trying to counter the reasons for our disagreement.  Bishop Breidenthal visited us a couple of weeks ago to have a dialog on our differing views about the open table.  He listened very intently to everyone’s comments and he also participated in expressing his views.  I believe that everyone in attendance listened very actively to what he was saying.  This was a true dialog and not a debate.  Dialog is how you move to the center.  May we all continue to actively listen to each other and may the national political arena become more like the Episcopal Church in actively listening, trying to understand our differences, and seeking that middle ground where everyone can exist.


~Michael Harbin, Junior Warden


Vestry and Convention Delegate Voting!

Voting for Vestry and Convention Delegates continues this Sunday, February 21.  The 8 individuals running for the 4 Vestry openings are:  Agnes Burris, Edward Lasseigne, Brad Oglesby, Kaitlyn Raver, Joe Rutter, Wayne Sheppard, Norm Wernet and Rob Wood.   The 5 individuals running for the 4 Diocesan convention lay delegate positions are: Rae Fellows, Edward Lasseigne, Janet McNaughton, Norm Wernet, and Mignonne Whitlow.   Voting will conclude with the Sunday of the annual meeting, February 28.


Potluck and Annual Meeting

February 28 following the 10:30 service 

The annual meeting is the required meeting where we conduct the business of the church each year.  To make it more fun, we have a potluck meal with the meeting.  Please plan to bring food to share (main dish, side dish, dessert, beverages).  We are going to supply some chicken, so perhaps bring something that goes well with chicken.  The potluck will begin immediately after the 10:30 service.  The meeting will begin about 15 minutes after everyone has their food.  The elections will conclude 10 minutes after the service and the results of the elections will be announced at the meeting.  We’ll have a thrilling bylaws vote as well as a report from the Search Committee and other groups.  I hope all of you can make it!

~Cynthia Whitacre, Sr. Warden


Building Responsibility, Equality and Dignity (BREAD)

Faith has invited us to celebrate a holy Lent by becoming doers of justice. One way to do this is to become part of the justice ministry at St. Stephen’s. This Sunday, February 21st, after the 10:30 service, BREAD’s Justice Ministry Network will gather in Hobson Hall. If you were a Justice Ministry Network member last year or would like to be one this year, you are invited.


Justice Ministry Network members bring at least 3 people to the Nehemiah Action on Monday May 9th, and attend 3 other BREAD meetings during the year. Since we will have a bus at St. Stephen’s on May 9th to take us to the Action – and a potluck supper to get us ready –  the “bringing” is pretty easy. We do need you to invite, cajole, urge and remind your friends and fellow parishioners to come to the Action. This is our opportunity to do justice. Our power to create change comes from the number of people we turn out for this meeting.


So come and pick the names of those you want to invite from our new directory. You’ll hear updates on BREAD concerns from team members, and learn what this year’s Action will be like.


With your help, BREAD Rises!



The ninth Annual AWAKE Trade-In Bake Sale continues this Sunday, February 21, 2016. This is the second of five Sundays that the Sale will be held. We ask that you bring non-food items to donate/ give to Neighborhood Services, Inc., which is our local food pantry and service place for people/ families in need. Non-food items include soap, shampoo, paper products, toothpaste, etc. Whatever you can give is very much appreciated. Last week, which was our first Sunday, we literally filled the basket to the top of the handle. Several people said that it was the most that we had ever received on the first Sunday of the Bake Sale. YES!!!!!!!!

Please note that when you bring and give something, the children will come and pick it up during the early part of the 10:30 am worship service. They will then give you a ticket, which you can exchange after the service for a baked goodie…OR, a bookmark with a picture of something/ someone at St. Stephen’s. These bookmarks are made by Chris Donaldson, our AWAKE photographer exemplar!

AWARE…let’s do something different this Sunday; AWARE will meet in the BREAD meeting following the 10:30 am service. We will focus on social justice issues. NOTE; should we get pizza?

ALIVE will NOT meet this Sunday, due to the BREAD meeting after church, OR Sunday, Feb 28 due to the Annual Meeting. We will resume on March 6.



NSI Donations for Easter

St. Stephen’s has been asked to collect cans or plastic bottles (no glass bottles) of fruit for the Easter baskets.  Our goal is 400 cans/bottles of any kind of fruit, as of last Sunday we’ve collected 114 cans of fruit.  Bring the fruit to church by Sunday, March 13.

In addition, last Sunday 106 personal items were donated from the Trade In Bake Sale.


Swap Shop for our Sisters

‘Women’s Swap for our Sisters’ will be held in Hobson Hall on Saturday, February 27. This is sponsored by Women Have Options-Ohio, and it raises money for women’s reproductive health services. From 11:00 am until 6:00 pm that day, people can come and get donated clothing for LOW Prices!  NOTE; if anyone would like to volunteer, we could use some help on Friday evening, from 4:30 pm to 8:00 pm, sorting and setting up. We could also use help on Saturday the 27th as well. If you are available to help, contact Jeff Watters. This is a great cause!


The Game Show: At EASE Gallery

Feb 26 –April 9, Opening Reception Feb 26 7-9pm

We invited artists, philosophers, teachers, and thinkers to come together over a hshared meal, form groups ad create a game out of collaboration.  The Game Show is the fruit of these labors where process and play produce product.  Come to the show.  play the game.  take a book.

Featuring: Julie Jent, Karl Stevens, Matt Swift, Nicolette Swift, Natalia Arbelaez, Brad Modlin, Kristin Calhoun, Joy Sullivan, Carolyn Baginski, Agnes Burris, Adam Gellings, Forrest Gard, James Minor, Wendy McVicker, Kristin Distel, Jena Seiler, and Melissa Neiderhiser.

Made possible by a grant from the Greater Columbus Arts Council.


Book Club News

Book Club News:   The March book is Gentlemen of the Road by Michael Chabon.  Book Club is meeting on Wednesday, March 9 at 6:30 PM at Matthew and Cory Strauss’ home (  We’ll share a meal, followed by book discussion.  Please bring food and/or beverage to share.  Kindly let Matthew and Cory know in advance if you plan to attend.  Everyone is welcome.  And, the book club selection of titles for 2016 is now available.  Contact Cynthia Whitacre ( if you would like a copy of the list.


Reminder:  If you’re mailing something to the church, especially time-sensitive materials, we recommend using the PO Box!  St. Stephen’s Episcopal Church, PO Box 82263

Columbus, OH 43202