June 4, 2020 edition of The Newsletter

The Newsletter 
Saints James and Andrew

Dear People of Saints James and Andrew,

Over these last few months we have been forced to come face to face with our own powerlessness. It has been painful and hard, yet ultimately it has been a gift from God.  This may be the first time in my own life I have been required to think so critically about my actions and motivations.  If I choose to leave the house, do I wear a mask? (Yes). If I leave the house, who might I be putting at risk?  (Only God knows, though science suggests quite a few people).  While this kind of pandemic-induced critical thinking is new to me, it has been a matter of survival for those with brown and black bodies. Not just now, but always. 

Think about that for a moment. As a privileged, white woman the only questions I generally used to concern myself with when leaving the house concerned the weather conditions and if the sidewalk was well lit enough to walk safely home alone. When I drive faster than the posted speed limit, and see flashing lights in my rearview, my primary concern is whether I am going to get a ticket. I pray the officer will let me off with a warning (an abuse of prayer if there ever was one). I have never needed to worry about keeping my hands on the steering wheel where they can be seen, or keeping my tone as respectful as possible so I’m not asked to step out of the car.  I have literally never been in a position where I might have an officer take a knee on my neck and remove my very breath from my body.  Nor have I had someone call the police because I look suspicious as I birdwatch, or be shot because my hoodie sweatshirt causes concern about the safety of the neighborhood. Nor must I worry about what might be assumed of my children as they play outside and ride their bikes.  If that is not the tip of the iceberg of my white privilege I am not sure what is. 

Friends, we have a moral obligation to address the systemic racism in the church and in our nation.  We can not sit at home wishing folks would simply find more peaceful ways to protest.  That is our privilege talking, and our privilege needs to be quiet and listen to the cries of our black and brown neighbors.  We need to listen, learn, repent, reconcile and be changed.  Black lives matter, and we need to stop passively hoping things will get better on their own. They will not get better until we collectively step up and do the work of dismantling racism. 

One of the simplest things we can do is challenge our assumptions and be intentional in our language.  It might be easiest to begin this work by picking up a book and doing some reading.  I have been moved by the work of Lenny Duncan, who wrote Dear Church: A love letter from a black preacher to the whitest denomination in the U.S.  Similarly, Molly has just finished reading Howard Thurman’s work, Jesus and the Disinherited. Others have highly recommended Austin Channing Brown’s work, I'm Still Here: Black Dignity in a World Made for Whiteness and James H. Cone’s, The Cross and the Lynching Tree

Cara Hins has invited fellow parishioners to join her in reading Latasha Morrison’s work, Be the Bridge: Pursuing God’s heart for racial reconciliation. If you are interested in joining her, please contact her at

You can check out this list of Anti-Racism Resources which features resources for white parents to raise anti-racist children, articles and books to read, videos to watch, podcasts to subscribe to, films and TV series to watch, organizations to follow on social media, and links to additional resources.

You can learn more about Becoming Beloved Community: the Episcopal Church’s long-term commitment to racial healing, reconciliation, and justice by following our local Episcopal branch Beloved Community WMA on Facebook.  

You can read what Bishop Fisher and Presiding Bishop Curry have to say about current events. 

Be empowered.  Our experience with this pandemic might have given us a deep inside look at powerlessness. Yet it is a lesson we have desperately needed.  We can now open our eyes to the oppression and systemic racism happening all around us and begin the even more difficult work of listening, learning, repenting, reconciling, and being changed. 

Yours in Christ,

Rev. Heather

Important Updates

Parish Life

Sunday Sandwiches!

A Process for Moving Forward 

and other COVID updates can be found on our Website.



VIRTUAL COFFEE HOUR, Sunday, 10:45 a.m.





We are excited about this NEW Virtual Potluck & Compline on Wednesdays at 6pm. You are invited to join us by phone or video for a virtual potluck and compline every Wednesday, 6-7 p.m. until June 24. This will be an opportunity to check in, for fellowship, to break bread and pray together. 

Meeting ID: 825 6402 3285
To join by phone: 1(646) 558 8656
To join by Zoom video:


Check out Heather and Molly‘s weekly updates on YouTube.


Dear J & A Kids and Parents:

The Stitchers at St Andrew’s Guild were looking forward to getting started on another sewing project (see the quilted pillow above), but alas, it’s not to be, at least not now. I know you’re busy with schooling and your parents might be a bit worn out with it all, but here’s an offering for a summer at- home sewing project.

We can provide a kit that includes directions, fabric strips, batting backing and binding (everything you need to complete the project).  If you have a machine at home, and you’ve completed the flannel PJ project, you can do this! A Facetime chat could be helpful if you get confused.

If you’d like to borrow a machine (this would require an adult at home who’s familiar with them), we can work that out.

It will take a while to get this all together, so please let us know if you are interested.

email is best, or cell 4137753887

-Kathryn for St Andrews Guild

Grow in Faith Summer Book Group: Please join us on June 21st after virtual coffee hour from 11:30 - 12:30 for our first Grow in Faith: Summer Book Group discussion. We will be discussing Inspired: Slaying Giants, Walking on Water, and Loving the Bible Again by Rachel Held Evans. Without giving too much away, the author focuses on various themes found throughout the Bible, while diving deeper and moving behind the scenes to provide historical and cultural perspective into the times, the places and the writers of the books. The discussion will be led by Dan Carew. 
Join Zoom Meeting

Meeting ID: 836 7776 5943
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Meeting ID: 836 7776 5943
Please join us on July 19th after virtual coffee hour from 11:30 - 12:30 for our second Grow in Faith Summer Book Group.  In Tattoos on the Heart: The Power of Boundless Compassion, Father Gregory Boyle, a Jesuit priest, relates his experiences with Homeboy Industries, a program he founded to provide an alternative to gang membership for young, mostly Latinx men and women in Los Angeles. Poignant and often funny, Tattoos provides an inspiring testament to the power of unconditional love to transform and redeem broken lives—and our own.   The discussion will be led by Joanne Melish.

A Zoom meeting link will be provided closer to the date.

Mission and Ministry

“ What does the Lord require of you

but to do justice, and to love kindness,

    and to walk humbly with your God? 

-Micah 6:8” 

Thank you to our volunteers who help those experiencing hunger week after week without tiring. You are all so appreciated.

Malnutrition remains one of the leading complications in the deaths of the impoverished every year.

SsJA’s feeding programs are an answer to the nutritional needs of people in our community experiencing food insecurity. Each sandwich, dinner plate and bowl of food contains vitamins and nutrients needed to stop the vicious cycle of food insecurity and malnutrition.

Even during COVID-19, SsJA feeds over 300 Franklin County people every month.

We help to stave hunger by providing nutritious meals on Monday nights at Second Helpings and make soup and sandwiches every week for our Sunday Sandwiches program. For those on the margins days without a food resource can be very long.  SsJA’s mission to feed our neighbors blesses ALL involved with the Love, Joy and Hope of Jesus. We give our neighbors the nourishment they need and a chance to have a future filled with greater opportunities.

For several years now, SsJA has been instrumental in changing the lives of many, many people. Feeding is only one of the ways we do it!

Thank you, also, to all who financially support our feeding ministries!  We couldn’t do it without you.

Di Kurkulonis for the Stewardship Team

Sunday Sandwiches Program:
Delicious and nutritious  bagged lunches are prepared and then handed out at our Whiteman Room “take-out window” from 12-12:30pm.
Want more info?  Contact Marie at

Weekly Bible Study:
Join us on Mondays from 6:30 p.m. to whenever we finish, usually 7:45 p.m. 
Via Zoom.
Call Charlie at 413-522-7914 to get on the notification list.
Second Helpings To Go:
On Mondays starting at 4:30 p.m., our volunteers package and distribute a nice hot meal to our neighbors in need! Our “customers” respectfully keep social distance as they pick up their dinner at the Whiteman take-out window.
-Contact Maggie,  or Erin, for more information.
Weekly Spiritual Reflection:
Join us on Fridays from 6:30 p.m. to around  7:45 p.m. 
Via Zoom.
Call Charlie at 413-522-7914 to get on the notification list.
Whitney’s Pantry:
From 3 to 5:30 p.m, on the last Monday of the month, a dedicated group of volunteers pack bags of personal essentials for our neighbors in need. The bags are then distributed free of charge at our Whiteman take-out window to very grateful recipients.
-Contact Doris for more information.


Scholarship Awarded! Ss. James and Andrew has a process to award scholarships to worthy applicants attending college.. this year we had one application from Anna Jackowski, who will be starting her Senior year at Williams College.  Anna was very active in the church until she went off to college and her family still is. The scholarship committee met and recommended that Anna receive $1,000.  The Mission team approved this recommendation.  Congratulations to Anna.
-Jeanne Canteen for the Scholarship Committee

Ministry Friends

Important Resources
FCC Warns Public About COVID-19 Scams

The FCC offers the following tips to help you protect yourself from scams, including coronavirus scams:
  • Do not respond to calls or texts from unknown numbers, or any others that appear suspicious.
  • Never share your personal or financial information via email, text messages, or over the phone.
  • Be cautious if you’re being pressured to share any information or make a payment immediately.
  • Scammers often spoof phone numbers to trick you into answering or responding. Remember that government agencies will never call you to ask for personal information or money.
  • Do not click any links in a text message. If a friend sends you a text with a suspicious link that seems out of character, call them to make sure they weren't hacked.
  • Always check on a charity (for example, by calling or looking at its actual website) before donating. (Learn more about charity scams.)
Find out more

Click HERE to view the complete calendar of events on our website.

Prayer List:  Names are on the list for 4 weeks, then removed. Feel free to re-add a name at any time.
Timothy, Johanna, Eryn, Alissa, Cindy, Bill, Mike, Christen, Beth, and Peter.
Contribute to The Newsletter:  by emailing the office by Monday, June 15,  2020. Published on the first and third Thursdays of the month. 

Our Mission:  We believe God is calling us to cultivate a community of love, joy, hope, and healing. Jesus is our model for a life of faith, compassion, hospitality, and service. We strive to be affirming and accessible, welcoming and inclusive; we seek to promote reconciliation, exercise responsible stewardship, and embrace ancient traditions for modern lives.

Vestry Contact Information

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Copyright © 2020 The Episcopal Church of Saints James and Andrew, All rights reserved.

Virtual Office Hours:  
Monday - Friday:  9 am-12 pm
Closed on Holidays

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