Thank you to all who participated in last Sunday's Town Hall meeting, as well as the 125 who participated in the Survey and those who participated in the Focus Group meetings. Next week we will receive a comprehensive report from FGMA. In the meantime, you can access Survey Results, Focus Group notes, and a condensed version of Sunday's Town Hall Meeting presentation below. ...
Part of the good news is we widely recognize the connection between the deplorable condition of the Parish House and the lack of desired involvement among students and younger families. The survey revealed more good news that 70% of us are willing to support significant updating to the Parish House if we can clarify how the space will be used. In fact wide agreement about how most of the space will be used already exists.
The ground floor is sure to remain dedicated to Parish Hall and Kitchen, ideally much more accessible and attractive, with accessible restrooms, and with better AV equipment and furnishings.
The first floor is sure to retain offices for at least four staff, though probably reconfigured and resituated to free up space for dedicated nursery and early childhood space, accessible restrooms, and more attractive, better furnished flexible use meeting space.
The second floor requires new accessible restrooms and regardless of whether it is used for parish groups, student groups, or community groups will require well furnished flexible attractive space.
The survey and focus groups reveal widespread recognition of our particular demographic challenges. Over 90% of respondents and participants are 55 or older. We know a big piece of our work as a parish is growing younger. Growing younger requires prioritizing the needs of people who are not yet here. This fundamentally adaptive, spiritual, heart and mind work won't be accomplished by new finishes, fixtures, and furnishings. And yet, this adaptive, spiritual work can't be viewed independently of our architecture. Young families, students, newcomers and visitors of all ages deserve and look for accessible attractive hospitable facilities. Our physical spaces reflect our inner life and to some extent our physical environment shapes our inner life. So we need to do both the spiritual and physical renovations in dialogue, together. The good news is we know how to do both the physical and the spiritual work. The spiritual work is the work of love, the work of opening our hearts and centering the message of Jesus, and increasing our empathy for and understanding of the needs of children, students, families, visitors, and people with special needs. And it is the work of sharing authority over resources and decisions with younger, new members. Putting Jesus first, others second, and ourselves third. The physical work, while expensive, is in many ways much easier and we could by the end of the year develop a phased plan that would hold up for many years. Though perhaps not as long as we are asking much of the current Parish House to hold up. In general, buildings need renovation and rejuvenation every 25 years, rather than every 50 or 75. Let's invest in both spiritual and physical rejuvenation. Spiritual growth oriented toward inviting and connecting with younger people. And at the same time planned, phased rejuvenation of the Parish House that reflects our commitment to our vision of spiritual community. As a first step, in addition to reviewing the FGMA reports, invest in your personal spiritual growth by participating with other members of the church in one or more of our Lenten spiritual growth opportunities - Lent Madness!, Christianity and Culture, Confirmation and Reaffirmation of Faith, Wednesday nights in March, Tuesday night Lenten Journey program offered by the Diocese, or one of the on-going groups such as Men's Breakfast on Tuesday mornings, Bible Study Sunday afternoons, Cursillo, Morning Prayer, and Choir and Paws to Connect - two places where Grace is truly growing young already!
Tuck Bowerfind, Rector, Grace Episcopal Lexington
Worship Services | Last Sunday after the Epiphany | Sunday, February 19
Holy Eucharist | 8AM
In-Person & Zoom
Christianity and Culture | 9:15AM
Parish Hall & Zoom | Last Epiphany Intro to Lent Madness
Holy Eucharist | 10:30AM
In-Person & YouTube
Bible Study | 4PM
In-Person | Welles Room | Gospel of Matthew
Community Sing | 5PM
In-Person | No Registration Required
Morning Prayer | Monday–Friday 8:30AM
In-Person & Zoom
Ash Wednesday Services | Wednesday, February 22 8AM, Noon, 6PM
Paws to Connect is Back!
We had a fantastic first-week-back at Paws to Connect! Join us this week on Grace's steps from 11:30AM to 1:30PM on Tuesday and Wednesday!
We're on Twitter!
To stay in the loop with all things Grace Episcopal, give us a follow on our new Twitter! While you're at it, check out our other socials too.
Upcoming Music Events (No Registration Required)
Anyone interested in Confirmation, Reception, or Reaffirmation of Faith please contact Tuck or Samson. We plan to hold a first meeting in the Library after the 10:30AM service on February 19.
The Lexington Community Youth Group
6th-12 graders | Trinity United Methodist Church 5:30PM – 7PM Sunday, February 19
The goals of this contest are fun and reflecting on how we are inspired and challenged by some exemplars of Christian discipleship. Please invite friends to participate and come to the presentations and debates.
Please subscribe for the Lent Madness emails which will allow you to vote for each contest.
There will be a prize for anyone who correctly picks the Faithful Four and the 2023 Golden Halo winner before Ash Wednesday. (I have heard that Captain Phillips will be trying to get the VMI community to rally behind Jonathan Daniels.) On February 19 at Christianity and Culture we will introduce the contest with the first six presentations. Other presentations will take place on Wednesday nights in March starting at 6:45PM. On Wednesdays in March those who wish may gather for abbreviated Evening prayer at 6PM. Anne Sauder will serve a Soup and Bread supper at 6:20PM and our presentations will begin at 6:45PM. We plan to adjourn at 7:30PM.
Please pray for the wider Church and intercessions requested by our Congregants: The Diocese of Southwestern Virginia, and our Bishop, The Rt. Rev. Mark Bourlakas. Pray today for the retired Bishops of the Diocese of Southwestern Virginia, The Rt. Rev. Heath Light and The Rt. Rev. Neff Powell. Pray for Robbie and Brendon (friends of the Brooke family), Michael Murphy, John Thomas, Timmy, Katie (daughter-in-law of Connie Bryant), Rick Alexander, Bradley Fairchild and Karen Junkin (friends of the Gibsons), Caroline Parcell, Alice Parcell, Stanard, Rebecca, and Caroline (family of Mary Price), Gloria June Perry (mother of Michael Perry), Glen Jones (friend of the Riethmillers), Darlene Travis (sister of Don Ellis), Patricia Brown Boyer (sister of Madison Brown), Alice Furgerson, Dolly Shumate (friend of the Lewis’), Laura Wieman (friend of the Hotchkiss’), Carolyn Glenn (friend of Judy Schram), Jack Hershbell, David Passmore, David Sorrells, Crystal Iosco and John Penn (granddaughter and son of Ellie & George Penn) and those we name aloud or in our hearts. Pray for those who have died, Dick Rathmell, Alleane Taebel.
In Thanksgiving for February Birthdays
2/17 Keith Prince
2/19 Rose Hein
2/21 Steve Riethmiller
2/23 Beverly Tucker, Graham Hess
2/24 Holt Merchant
2/25 Jeanne Passmore
2/27 Joseph Henson
2/28 Caitie Carrington
2/28 Erin Carrington
We're so glad you're here! If you or someone you know is new to Grace and would like more information about Parish life, follow the link below.
Black in Appalachia Pilgrimage
Join the Episcopal Diocese of Southwestern Virginia April 28-30 for a pilgrimage to explore and learn about the roots of black history in the Appalachian Mountains. There is a limit of 15 spots for this trip, so please see the event details and registration button below.
Our Lenton Journey: Companions Along the Way
You're invited to Our Lenten Journey: Companions Along the Way, a six-week, online series on Tuesdays at 7PM from February 28 – April 4 sponsored by The Episcopal Diocese of Southwestern Virginia.
Episcopal Church's Public Affairs Office Email List
Subscribe to the Episcopal Church’s Public Affairs Office’s email lists to receive the latest information about The Episcopal Church. “The Episcopal Church Press Release Digest” provides up-to-the-minute information about news, events, and resources from The Episcopal Church. The “Daily Scan” is a daily list of links to news stories in the mass media that highlight The Episcopal Church, Episcopal parishes and dioceses, and Episcopalians.
Donate to The Bishop’s Dollar Fund
This year during the season of Lent, Bishop Bourlakas extends his annual invitation to reflect on our discipleship in Jesus' name. As you walk the way of the cross through the forty days of Lent, we encourage generous support of The Bishop’s Dollar Fund to continue to address a variety of initiatives and needs throughout the diocese that would not be available through our annual program budget. You may send donations via the link below or mail a check to the Diocesan Office made payable to the Episcopal Diocese of Southwestern Virginia with "Bishop's Dollar" in the memo line to: Attn: Bishop's Dollar Fund, PO Box 2279, Roanoke, VA 24009.
Christ Episcopal Church is hosting a Shrove Tuesday Pancake Supper on Tuesday, February 21 5PM – 7PM in the Parish Hall. Menu will be: pancakes, sausage, applesauce, coffee, tea, and juice. Join us as we get ready for the Lenten Season.
Joint Service at First Baptist Church
You are cordially invited to attend First Baptist Church as we welcome our Hispanic and Ukrainian Friends to our Community! The service will be held on Sunday, March 5, 2023 at 11AM. Our Guest Preacher will be Rev. Dr Tomas Mackey who hails from Buenos Aires, Argentina and is the current President, Baptist World Alliance. A complimentary Soul Food Lunch will be served immediately following the Morning Worship Service.
W&L's Equality Gala
The LGBTQ+ Equality Gala (formerly Virginia Colleges LGBTQ+ Equality Gala) is an annual charity event hosted at Washington and Lee University where we have food, music, dancing, and drag queens in order to celebrate LGBTQ+ identity and raise money for the Shenandoah LGBTQ Center in Staunton, VA. We would LOVE it if you would come to the event and celebrate with us! W&L will be celebrating their 11th year hosting this event.
Hosting Ukrainian Families
A humanitarian outreach effort organized by citizens of Lexington, Buena Visa, and Rockbridge County, we aim to pave the way for sponsoring temporary re-settlement of families who qualify for entry according to the laws of the United States.
The mission of Hosting Ukrainian Families is based upon love, compassion, and humanitarian concerns for families seeking to live in peace. Accordingly, a call is issued to each person joining in this effort to set aside all political, culturally divisive viewpoints, and all differences which may hinder or defeat these goals. To donate, click the link below.