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We're Blessing Pets Sunday!
We're also inviting you to bring pet food, which our Food Pantry will make available to clients.
Outdoor, In-Person Eucharist
8:00 a.m. Sunday by Reservation
We are providing an opportunity for our Saint Mark's community to worship together outdoors, with communion. We have room for 85 people set up around our breezeway in socially distanced (9 feet apart) areas for each person/family. When you arrive for the service, please check in with an usher who will lead you to your seat. After the service, please stay seated until an usher dismisses you. Masks will be required for everyone during the service.  If you do not have a mask, we will have some available. You will need to register on this link to attend the service. 

When you awake to come to church, check your email to be certain the service has not been affected by rain.
Bishop Benfield to Visit Next Week
Bishop Larry Benfield will visit Saint Mark’s on Sunday, October 11. At the 8:00 service, he will confirm, receive and reaffirm baptismal vows of those who wish to make these commitments. Anyone wishing to be part of this must let the parish office (225-4203) know by Monday October 5, so we can reserve the correct number of seats. The Bishop will also preach and celebrate at the 10:30 service.
What’s the Big Deal About the Bishop Coming? Bishops are important to the Episcopal Church; so important, it's our church's namesake. One of the Bishop's essential roles is to serve as an outward sign of the unity of all the parishes in our diocese. We aren't just members of Saint Mark's but members of the Episcopal Church in Arkansas. 
About once a year, our Bishop, as chief pastor of the diocese, will come to Saint Mark's to celebrate the Eucharist, preach, confirm, re-affirm, and receive members into the Episcopal Church. Our Catechesis explains that "Confirmation is the rite in which we express a mature commitment to Christ, and receive strength from the Holy Spirit through prayer and the laying on of hands by a bishop." Confirmation, together with reception and reaffirmation, means that every member of the diocese will come in direct contact with the Bishop at least once. The Bishop's visit connects each one of us to our whole church in Arkansas, and, through Apostolic succession, to all Christians in Christ's Apostolic church that came before us and will come after us.
During a year where our physical connections have been diminished, Bishops are more critical than ever. Their order is our connection to the whole church. They remind us that even though we have to stay six feet away from each other for now, we are always connected through our "one Lord, one Faith, and one Baptism." No virus will ever be able to separate that bond.
Worship Opportunities

Morning Prayer Morning Prayer leaders pray the office at 8:30, Monday - Friday. Everyone is invited to join. The service is in front of the outdoor altar in the Columbarium. Please bring your own prayer book or mobile device to following along with the prayers. Please wear a mask and maintain all social distance guidelines.   

Compline Wednesdays and Saturdays at 8:00 p.m.on Facebook live. The Wednesday evening service is a 12 Step service.

Come Pray in the Chapel We know that many of you have missed being in the church. During regular office hours, the Church and Chapel will be open for you to go inside to sit and pray in quiet.  Please enter through the Chapel door and sign the book as you enter.  Masks, hand sanitizer and disinfectant wipes will be available as you enter.  We ask that before leaving, please wipe down any area that you may have come in contact with.  

More ways to Worship with us Live Online Sunday Mornings  In addition to already being able to watch live on our Facebook you can also find us on our Youtube account, or right on our own website. Links to all three are here: WebsiteYoutubeFacebook

Boy Scouts at Saint Mark’s  BSA Troop 7 at Saint Mark's has been in place since 1954 and during this time, the troop has produced over 100 Eagle Scouts and has enhanced the lives of hundreds of young men and adult leaders who have a love of the outdoors and a penchant for serving others. Recent activities include canoeing on the Buffalo River, overnight camping, backpacking trips, day hikes, visiting historic sites, and service projects in the community. With COVID19 precautions in place, Troop 7 has begun meeting again for the new school year and is open to any boys interested in being a part of this vibrant group.  Participants must be at least 11 years old or have completed the fifth grade, and not more than 18 years old.  Troop 7 meets on Monday evenings from 6:30 pm to 7:15 pm.  Please contact David Mann, Scoutmaster, for more information 501-944-2474.

EYC Registration Open! At Saint Mark's we recognize how important community is to the spiritual and mental well-being of our young people. With that in mind, we are excited to offer small group programming for Fall 2020. This is the best way for us to allow in person gathering for our young people, while keeping safety and health as our highest priority. Because of this, we are asking that every youth who plans to attend EYC this Fall register in advance for the semester. Each small group is limited to 12 youth. Registration is required
We have three small groups this fall:

  • 6th grade: meets from 6-7pm in the Close (grassy area between church and Youth Hall) or the Youth Hall when weather is bad

  • 7th and 8th grade: meets from 6-7pm in the English garden (outside the south doors of the Parish Hall) or the Parish Hall when weather is bad

  • Sr High: meets from 7-8 in the Close (grassy area between church and Youth Hall) or the Youth Hall when weather is bad

Children's Sunday School This year’s program will be a mix of VBS, Children's Chapel and what we would do in the classroom. Until we are able to meet in person, we will meet over Zoom. I know Zoom isn't the same as in person, but as a parent, I promise we will make the time they spend with us worth it! Kids will need a Worship Tool Box, filled with all sorts of interactive spiritual goodies to use each week. If your child wants to participate, we will get a tool box  to you! Luke Gilbert will leave one in the office or deliver it to you. Children 3y-5th grade can have a fun and interactive Bible story lesson each week. From 9:30-9:45 we will share music, games, and the weekly story. From 9:45-10:00 the kids will join their teachers in zoom breakout rooms to worship and react to the story. All will come back together at 10:00 for a closing video and prayer. We hope these 30 minutes will help your child grow in God's love each week! Contact Luke with questions.

Youth Sunday School: Think. Believe. Do. We will begin Sunday school via Zoom this Sunday at 9:15am. Youth in 6th-12th grade are invited to join us to think about faith, grow in our beliefs and do the work of God in the world. Zoom info: Meeting ID: 833 5617 9439 Password: tbd2020

Summer Camp 2021 Schedule
We are very excited to offer a Christian Formation camping experience in Summer 2021 at the Vines Center (formerly the 4-H Center) just outside Little Rock. In addition to camp songs, camp games, and your favorite camp friends, expect new activities like canoeing, ropes course adventures, and many other programs run in partnership with the Arkansas outdoor school. Camps are one day shorter than past years and therefore the cost will be less also. Applications for staff and volunteer positions will go out in November, and we hope to have summer camp applications online in December. For more information, contact Randall Curtis.

Shea Tuttle to Speak October 18

Shea Tuttle, author of Exactly As You Are: The Life and Faith of Mister Rogers, will present a book talk on Sunday, October 18, at 7 pm as part of the Central Arkansas Library System's  Six Bridges Book Festival. The festival is a virtual event this year with over 50 authors speaking October 8-18. The book festival program will be in the Sunday, September 27 Arkansas Democrat-Gazette.

All talks are free. Here's a link to the library's site so you can register to attend.

Saint Mark's and the Betty Rowland Wittenberg Foundation are sponsoring Shea Tuttle. The full list of authors and a description of their books is here.

WordsWorth Books is the book seller for the book festival and has Tuttle's book in stock.

 Online Worship Bulletin
Each week, a copy of each Sunday’s worship bulletin will be on our website. This contains all the hymns and scripture texts appointed for that day, making worship from home even easier. 
Sunday Mornings at 9:15

Jesus and Justice  This Sunday October 4, we will be studying in the Forum at 9:15 the last chapter of Biblical Justice about what we know about justice from Jesus in the New Testament. We learn about Jesus’ views on justice through his life and his teachings. Think of stories in Jesus’s ministry where you find his teachings on justice in these four areas: 

  • He rejected Social Discrimination

  • He was a critic of Economic Injustice 

  • He had a mistrust of Institutional Power

  • He repudiated War and violence

Music Discussion Class on Thursday Evenings

You don’t need anything other than an interest in or curiosity for music to be able to enjoy this offering from organist/choirmaster, Tim Allen. Each week we will discuss a well-known musical masterpiece. Next week's piece for the Music Explorers Group will be the Adagio by Samuel Barber, a true American classic. It is sometimes referred to as the “American Nimrod" (Elgar's famous slow piece from the Enigma Variations). It has a fascinating and a mystical story. Join us on Thursday 8, October at 7pm, via Zoom. Contact Tim Allen for full details, and he will forward you the link. 
Parish Notes

Welcome, New Members! This Sunday at the 8:00 service, Saint Mark’s will welcome Sharon Gavin and Paul Chenault as new members. Please help them feel welcome.

Arkansas ECW Fall Gathering This year’s Fall Gathering will be held virtually on Oct. 10, 8:30 a.m.–1 p.m. Jerusalem Greer, staff officer for evangelism at the National Episcopal Church, will speak on The Good News of Change--Faith, Race, and Living Through a Pandemic. Learn more about Fall Gathering and other ECW events on the ECW wesbite.

2020 Pride Fest Will Be Virtual The 8th annual Central Arkansas Pride Fest will be held Saturday, Oct. 17, on Facebook Live. 

New Book From Deacon Joanna The Rev. Dr. Joanna Seibert will host a release party for A Daily Spiritual Rx for Ordinary Times, a book which completes her trilogy of daily readings for the year.There will be a drive by signing at the portico at Saint Mark’s at 10 am on Saturday, October 17. Wear a mask and books will be brought to your car. Books are $18, and you may use cash, check (written to Camp Mitchell), or credit card, with all proceeds going to Camp Mitchell.Contact Joanna Seibert if you are coming.

Small Group Guidelines Small groups (15 people max) may begin meeting again on Saint Mark’s campus. The group is to think carefully about whether meeting in person is better than Zoom and ask members if they feel safe and comfortable meeting in person. If someone can’t come, and you decide to meet in person anyway, is there a way to include them via Zoom or FaceTime? How? To assist groups in making a decision, we have prepared extensive guidelines. Read all the guidelines on our website

All Saints Prayer List Saint Mark’s will remember the faithful departed on All Saints Sunday, November 1. To add a name to the All Saints memorial list (to be printed in the order of service), please email the name to Names must be received by Tuesday, October 27. Those buried in the Columbarium will automatically be added to the memorial list. To contribute to the placing of flowers on each marker in the Columbarium, you may make a donation to St. Mark’s Columbarium Fund. Names of parishioners who have died since the last All Saints celebration will be read aloud as our special intention prior to both morning services on All Saints Sunday. We will read the names of all interred in the Columbarium at a special service at the outdoor altar at 4:30 that day.
Virtual Coffee Hour Saint Mark’s hosts two opportunities for a virtual coffee hour via Zoom. This will be unstructured time where members can join and socialize with one another. Coffee hour times are 8:45 (leading into the Forum at 9:15) and after the 10:30 service. The Zoom information is the same for both coffee hours, and the Sunday formation. Meeting ID: 663 023 204 Password: saintmarks

Food Pantry Continues to Serve  8:30 – 10:00 Thursdays Saint Mark's Food Pantry, with help from the League of Women Voters, is offering voting help during the month of September.  We'll have Voter Registration Forms, Applications for Absentee Voting, and information about deadlines and dates.  This will be at the EYC Center during regular Pantry times (Thursdays, 8:30 - 10:00 a.m.) and Saint Mark's members and friends are welcome to attend. Current food needs include: jelly, mac & cheese, and loaves of sliced bread.

Election Day Prayer Vigil Tuesday, November 3 From 9a.m.- 5:00 p.m., the Daughters of the King will sponsor an Election Day Prayer Vigil. The Church and Chapel will be open to sit and pray in quiet. Enter through the Chapel, and sign the book. Wear a mask, go into the sanctuary and sit at one of the X spots in the pews. Wipe off your sit after you leave. Masks, hand sanitizer, and disinfectant wipes are available If you decide to go to the Chapel, only four people can be there at a time. It is preferable that people go to the larger church where air circulation is better.  You may also light a votive candle.  Before leaving, please wipe down any area that you may have come in contact with. Bless you for being a part of this Vigil on Election Day. Our country is in need of your prayers. Prayers are at the door. You may download the prayers to bring with you to decrease paper handling. For prayers, contact  Joanna Seibert or Jane Anne Blakney-Bailey.

Condolences We send our heartfelt prayers and condolences to Michael McCain and his family on the recent death of his grandmother, Bev McCain. We also extend prayers and sympathy to Steve Garrett and his family on the recent death of his mother, Ruth Garrett.

Prayer List

For the Episcopal Church Justin, The Archbishop of Canterbury; Michael, the Presiding Bishop; Larry, our Bishop; our clergy, Danny, Michael, Patricia, Susan, Joanna and Billy; our Staff & Vestry    

In the Anglican Cycle of Prayer: Pray for the Anglican Church of Tanzania

In the Diocesan Cycle of Prayer: St. John’s, Camden; St. Nicholas’, Maumelle

For peace and an end to terrorism, oppression, poverty, pollution, persecution

For our staff: Karen Blissit, Parish Administrator

For our parish ministries, especially: St. Mark’s Men’s Bible Study

For the safety of first responders, healthcare workers and those in the military, especially: Megan Witzke, Sam, Breen, Marshall

For those commended to our prayers: Don, Tim Woods, Cole Jeffries, Austin, John, Madison Moore, Paul Gilman, Rachel, Mary Thompson, Dean Hicks, Irene Glasgow, Diana Boston, Betsy Depenau, Carl Gessler, Cynthia Fisher, Lauri Williams, Samantha, Dale, Ashley, Jerry Didier, Mathieu, Craig Chotard, Becky Moore, Ward, Kim Harrelson, Bailey Hernandez and her family, Bobbe Drake, Mary Sue Jacobs, the Weber family, Sue, Judi Blevins, Rita McGee, Alex, Wayne, Karen Head, Suzanne Hawkins, Mary Ann Nilles, Don Strother, Rod Adams, Ashley, Skylina Ann Morris, Peggie Howard, Ryan Sniegocki

Birthdays: Elise Siegler, Meredith Ellis, Mary Ann Gammill, Tim Head, Carson Moore, Sanford Wilbourn, Ann Bailey, Theresa Bennett, Michael Langley, Rob Richardson, Finley Young, George Badley, Evelyn Brown, Harper Hicks, Charlotte Whitbeck, Henry Jordan, Emily Spivey, Dao Ward, Marlise McCracken, Gareth Hughes, Dorsey Jackson, Jamie Matthews, Kevin Raney, Dylan Woodell

Wedding Anniversaries: Jay & Lisa Gandy

For those who died: Bev McCain, Meryl Greenslade, Bev McCain

Copyright © 2020 St. Mark's Episcopal Church, All rights reserved.

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