Friday, November 26, 2010

Establishing Poverty on the Church Agenda

Sunday marks the beginning of Advent, the start of the church year -- and we have a New Year's resolution of sorts. At this year's diocesan convention in Terre Haute in October, representatives of All Saints and the other churches in the diocese voted to thoughtfully and deliberately consider how our actions together as a church impact those most in need.

The resolution, titled "Establishing Poverty on the Church Agenda", calls us to connect all of the things we as a church do to the experiences of those living in poverty, asking that "all matter what their purpose...include intentional reflection time to connect the purpose of the meeting with the experiences and needs of people who are living in or near poverty". This discipline will begin Sunday, and last through March 24, the feast day of Oscar Romero and the Martyrs of El Salvador.

There's a temptation to think of this kind of thing as a nuisance agenda item, but ministry to the poor is a core part of what we do when we "go in peace to love and serve the Lord". I'm hopeful that we will approach this call as an opportunity to reflect creatively on our vision to build on our church's wonderful history as a beacon for social concerns.

Besides keeping poverty on the agenda of the church, there are concrete ways you can help on the horizon...coming up on December 21 is the Coalition for Homelessness Intervention and Prevention's annual memorial service for homeless persons who have died over the past year. The All Saints outreach committee has agreed to help provide desserts for the event. Watch this space for details on how you can get involved.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Giving Thanks

Dear Friends,

There is much to be grateful for this thanksgiving and I want to especially show thanks to all of those who participated in the celebration of Mary Campbell's life.

If I began to list all the people who assisted in that week before and on the day of the funeral, it would take the whole email to do so!

Everything that was done that day was done with love, hard work and commitment.

I had two friends from out of town staying with me this weekend and I brought them down because I wanted them to see All Saints. One friend is totally blind and it's hard to explain to her where she is and the environment she is in. That was not the case at All Saints. She asked to touch the various parts of the nave and altar. She remarked on the absolute beauty of the eagle. And tenderly touched Mary and the baby Jesus. We sat down down for what I thought was was going to be a brief moment but lasted a long time.

Both she and her partner Jennifer have been associated with the church and have s mall group that does ministry work in North Carolina. Both told me that this was a very special evening for them.

My friend Gerry told me you can feel the presence in this place. There's something happening here. Of course, the presence of incense was still strong, and the quiet of that evening after the moving liturgy and all the community of the believers of the day says what All Saints is really about.

I got a copy of the Vision Statement and read it to them and, as it says, something does happen in that space—and all of your commitment and love empower that and make it happen with God.

I wish you all a blessed Thanksgiving and look forward to Sunday.



Medicine Cabinet: 100 Days for 100 Years Program

As you contemplate your New Year Resolutions, consider the All Saints Medicine Cabinet’s  “100 Days for 100 Years” Program. 

This self-directed walking program is open to individuals of all fitness levels. Participants will first assess their current activity and set their own fitness goal for the 100 Days leading up to Easter. Sign up between November 28th and December 12th and receive a pedometer to help monitor you progress. Pedometers will be distributed at a kickoff meeting after Mass on January 8th. 

Monitor you activity level over the week then set you walking goals for the next 100 days (January 14th through April 24th). We’ll meet on January 15th to share our goals and participants will have the option of plotting their progress during a short meeting following the Sunday Service. 

Celebrate the 100 year anniversary of All Saints Church in a program that promotes physical and spiritual health. Hopefully you too may enjoy 100 years! 

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Calendar added to website

As we continue with our "Under Construction" status, a calendar has been added to the website.

Go to and click on Mark Your Calendars.

The first time you load it may take a few moments, so please be patient.

Contagious Generosity

I’d like to tell you a story. Because it took me completely by surprise and just goes to show you what kind of effect All Saints can have in the lives of others.

For the last week, All Saints has been assisting a man, his wife, and young son at Dayspring. He knocked on our back door last week and asked for someone to go into the church and pray with him before he boarded the bus to go to a job interview.

He had been looking for assistance in finding a place to live. A few of his children had to be housed in separate shelters around the city and he was trying to get them under one roof. We took one daughter and her young son to the Greyhound station one afternoon so that she could stay with her aunt outside of Chicago.

He found a place to live but had absolutely nothing: blankets, beds, furniture, or food. The utilities had to be turned on. He went through several assistance agencies and managed to get everything but the gas turned on. And we were able to help him pay for that through the rector’s discretionary fund.

The tuckpointing crew noticed this gentleman’s frequent visits to the church. They watched from the scaffolding as he and his four-year old son went back and forth between the church and Dayspring. They saw how we hustled everyone into a car to get them to the Greyhound station twenty minutes before the bus was to leave. They commented on how we took the man and his son to McDonald’s because they had missed lunch at the shelter while he was looking for a place to live.

But here’s the best part of the story.

Unbeknownst to us, one of the men on the crew drove this gentleman to the gas company. When I heard about that from the foreman, I went over to thank him. He said, “Well, I really wasn’t doing anything and you folks had been helping him out—he’s a nice guy who’s just going through a rough time.”

Another member of the crew brought in blankets, towels, pillows and some of his son’s old hats for the four-year old boy and asked me to get them to him. He said, “It looks like the church is really trying to help them out and we had these things just laying around the house.”

He even gave me a blanket to give to another man at Dayspring and his toddler who he saw walking across the parking lot. He said the blanket had been his daughter’s when she was that age and maybe she could use it.

There has been a lot of talk about stewardship lately and the reasons that we should give.

But what a profound revelation to learn firsthand the effect that All Saints and its ministry can have on perfect strangers who are around for a few short weeks!

— Paul Greatbatch

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Ingathering for the Damien Center Food Pantry November 21

All Saints is gathering food for a special Thanksgiving offering to the Coby Palmer Food Pantry at the Damien Center, Indiana's largest HIV/AIDS service center. We'll have a special food ingathering on Sunday, November 21, where we'll bring our offerings of food up to the altar for a special blessing before taking it to the Damien Center.

We encourage you to bring Thanksgiving-themed items. A suggested grocery bag would include stuffing, gravy, mashed potatoes, 2 canned vegetables, 2 canned fruits, and a dessert mix. Or check out the Damien Center's food pantry donation list for other ideas.

This is a great way to help our community for not very much money. The pile of food below was purchased for less than $50.

And check out what power-shopper Jane Billman did with a generous $100 contribution from an anonymous parishioner!

The shopping is finished. For the $100.00 we purchased:

20 cans corn
20 cans green beans
10 boxes instant potatos.....each contains 2 packets and can be divided
5 large cans sweet potatos
10 boxes stuffing
20 cans peaches
20 cans pears
20 boxes jello
10 cans evaporated milk
12 jars applesauce
5 bags noodles

The receipt says we saved $59.03. This should fill the holes in some dinners.


Sunday, November 14, 2010

All Saints Donates $1,100 to St. Philip's Food Pantry

The Rev. Karen Sullivan & Millie McRae, with the All Saints Yard Sale Committee

Each year, the All Saints Yard Sale Committee selects a local organization to direct part of the proceeds from the sale to. This year, the committee selected the feeding ministry of St. Philip's Episcopal Church.

Today at coffee hour, the Rev. Karen Sullivan, deacon at St. Philip's, along with Millie McRae, of St. Philip's outreach committee, and Sean Sullivan joined us at All Saints for the presentation of a check for $1,100, representing 50% of yard sale receipts. Karen shared that these funds will be used as seed money to purchase milk to distribute as part of the church's food ministries.

All Saints parish is excited to support the vibrant missions of our fellow Episcopal churches. St. Philip's works with St. Bridget's Catholic church from 10am-12 noon on the second Saturday of each month for food delivery to elderly residents in the neighborhood around the church, near the IUPUI campus. On the third Thursday of each month, from 6pm-8pm, St. Philip's offers the only weeknight food pantry in the downtown Indianapolis area.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

The Mittens are Up!

The All Saints Knitters have unveiled their project for our centennial year – 100 Hands from All Saints. Our goal is to knit 50 pair of mittens by November 1, 2011, all of which will be donated to an agency yet to be selected. The mittens will be displayed in the parish hall so you can watch our progress, and we hung the first batch up this week.

Are you an occasional knitter or someone who just can’t commit to joining this small group?! You are welcome to contribute to this project! We hope to have a variety of sizes and colors so that the recipient organization can provide handmade warmth to their clientele!

And remember, the knitting group meets in the parish hall at 5:30 on the 2nd and 4th Tuesdays of the month. Join us for a little food, a little drink, a little knitting, and a lot of great fellowship.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Remembering The Rev. Mary Campbell

The Rev. Mary Campbell died peacefully on Saturday, November 6, 2010. 

Mary was ordained Deacon in June 1980 and Priest in January 1981. Mary served as Associate Vicar at St. Timothy's, Indianapolis from 1980 - 1982 and she served as Vicar at St. Peter's, Lebanon from 1982 until 1994. She also served as Priest Affiliate at All Saints', Indianapolis and Interim Vicar at St. Mary's, Martinsville and St. John's, Speedway.

A service of Christian Burial with Bishop Cate Waynick presiding will be held on Saturday, November 20, at 11:00 am at All Saints' Episcopal Church, 1559 Central Avenue, Indianapolis, IN 46202 with a reception to follow in the Parish Hall.

Notes of sympathy may be sent to Mary's nephew, Mr. John Collom, 5108 West 154 Avenue, Lowell, IN 46356.

May her soul and the souls of all the departed, through the mercy of God, rest in peace.