THE CUPOLA The Church of the Holy Comforter Holy Comforter Ringers

The Church of the
Holy Comforter
April 2013
Holy Comforter Ringers
Hit the Beach!!
By Kathy Shannahan
Well, we did attend the Handbell Musicians of America Festival at the
Convention Center in Ocean City March 8th and 9th, but there was little time to
frolic in the sand. The Holy Comforter contingent included Suzy Beck, Joanne
Chamberlain, Steffy Ference, Ann Gearhart, Martha Hervey, Jane Krieger, Nor
Rysticken, Kathy Shannahan, Peg Smith, and our ‘groupies’ Barbara Bull and
Jackie Foster.
The Ringers attended rehearsals on Friday evening and alternating classes and
rehearsals on Saturday. The Festival culminated with a glorious concert on
Saturday afternoon.
It is impossible to describe the beautiful and moving sound created by nearly
600 ringers and more than 1,000 bells and hand chimes. We have added the 4
compositions we performed to our library here at Holy Comforter, and we look
forward to sharing their beauty as a part of our music ministry.
“Beautiful music...can calm the agitations of the soul; it is one of the most
magnificent and delightful presents God has given us.”
Martin Luther
Pictures….They Tell Our Story
By Sue Willis
Did you know that 90% of the folks searching for a church do it via the internet? Keeping that in
mind, and since our current site no longer meets our needs because of technical limitations, CHC
decided to move forward with a new website. For many years, Ed Hewitt has been our website administrator
and actually initiated CHC’s first website. He has invested hours of time and effort in keeping our posted
information current and up-to-date. However, Ed has decided to step down as the administrator of the new site,
and Sandy Benson and I have now taken on that challenge. Therefore, on behalf of everyone at CHC , thank
you Ed for all your hard work, time and effort in maintaining CHC‘s website over the years. Very much
appreciated and Sandy and I know we have big shoes to fill!
The new site has been developed, and Sandy and I are working with the creator to learn the process of posting
text, pictures, etc. (Special thanks to Ed for agreeing to maintain our current site until the new site goes live.)
We are currently updating information about our parish, commissions, and other news. However, we need
your help in allowing us to bring these words to life through pictures! Photos tell the story of the Church of the
Holy Comforter… who we are, what we do, and how we do it. Pictures of members of all ages engaged in
worship, Christian education, fellowship events, outreach and other church activities and programs provide a
unique visual perspective of all that we are and do. Most importantly, having pictures of us working and sharing
together includes everyone in this new project, creates memories and, at the same time, assists others in
making a more personal connection to our church.
As most of you know, there are rules and regulations when posting pictures on the internet for children under
age 18. Parents must sign a waiver allowing the church to display photos of their child/children participating in
church-related events on our website and in other church publications. Parents or guardians who do not
currently have a signed waiver on file at church for their child/children will be given an opportunity to complete
one. Please know, too, that safety of children is a top priority for CHC, and we will never include personal
information with a child’s photograph. Although we hope most parents/guardians will allow the church to include
their child in photographs, we will certainly honor and respect those who do not. To simplify the photo
permission process for adults who are CHC members, we only ask you to let the church office know if you wish
not to be included in parish photos. For individuals and visitors who are not members of the parish attending
our events or programs where photos are taken, photo waiver forms will always be provided. Essentially,
photos of individuals without permissions cannot be used.
If we can look past the paperwork process, I hope you will see the many benefits of photos in telling our story.
Please know pictures will be screened carefully to insure they display the values and beliefs of our
congregation. If you have any concerns or questions about this process, please do not hesitate to contact
Sandy Benson at [email protected] 410-661-4880 or Sue Willis at [email protected] 410-2566483.
Thanks to all in advance for your cooperation and support in helping us to tell our story. Let’s have fun and
welcome others with a friendly smile ☺ in a visual display of our spiritual growth and fellowship!
Pictures, a universal language
without words that share special
moments in time. Join with others who
help us tell our story.
Vestry Retreat Report
In March, the Vestry held its annual overnight meeting at the Claggett Center. The Vestry began at
11:30 am on Saturday, and concluded at 1:30 pm on Sunday.
The Saturday afternoon workshop was facilitated by Bishop John Rabb and focused on the history of
Holy Comforter over the last 60 years. This exercise helped the Vestry to identify patterns that can
take place over long periods of time and to use that knowledge moving forward.
The evening session on Saturday concentrated on the Mission and Vision Statements for Holy
Comforter. In an exercise based on the popular board game “Taboo,” the Vestry developed a list of
words that were off-limits to describe our parish. These off-limits words were typical of how churches
describe themselves.
Examples of “taboo” words were Discernment, Sacraments, Sanctuary, Eucharist, Scripture,
Worship. Breaking into two teams, the members made a list of words to describe our parish. This list
is posted in the narthex. There are markers placed next to the list, and I encourage you to add your
“non-taboo” words to the list.
As the Vestry works to update our Vision and Mission Statements, congregational input will help us to
effectively communicate, both to ourselves and to others, who we are as a church and what we feel
Holy Comforter is called to do.
Sunday morning we reviewed our current Vision and Mission Statements and laid out what the Vestry
feels are the top priorities for the church over the next one to three years. A wide range of areas
were listed, all of which are important and need attention as we continue to grow and as we plan for
Priorities included Outreach, Faith Formation / Education, Pastoral Care, Stewardship, Fellowship,
Worship, and Evangelism (Telling Our Story).
Each Vestry member was given three “dot stickers.” The stickers were green (first priority) yellow
(second) and red (third).
The Vestry listed these priorities as ones we need to apply additional focus:
1. Worship Diversity -- Worship that is accessible to all ages, paying close attention to children and
youth; incorporating children and youth more into our worship service and willingness to experience
different types of worship services. Challenges include times of services, space available for
services, service content and style, and adequate staffing of clergy to handle additional services.
2. Faith Formation / Education -- Provide programs and educational opportunities that reflect and
are relevant to people’s everyday lives and accommodate our changing culture, with regard to
content and meeting times. The need to develop more lay leaders for Faith Formation. Challenges
include adequate levels of clergy and staff, shortage of times and spaces currently available for
education and Faith Formation at Holy Comforter, and finding or developing a format that meets our
needs and the needs of the community.
3. Evangelism (a.k.a. Sharing Our Story) -- Connecting to communities and individuals outside our
(continued on page 4)
(Continued from page 3)
parish through website development, newsletter distribution and other methods of communication,
and continuing to welcome new members through the Shepherds program. Challenges include
continuing communication assessment and new member development.
One of the challenges that the Vestry faces comes from our parish survey conducted during 2011.
The survey clearly stated that our congregation’s top goal across all attendee types and age ranges
was to “make necessary changes to attract families with children and youth to our church.”
However, also in the survey were the following responses to two related questions:
Question 16: Our church tends to stay very close to established ways of doing things -82 percent of respondents agreed.
Question 28: We are willing to adapt our worship to the needs and circumstances of the people we
want to reach in our local community – 55 percent of
respondents agreed.
Also included in the parish survey was a descriptive
map, which uses the answers to the survey
questions to plot church characteristics relative to
the answers given by other parishes that had taken
the same survey. As you can see in the graph at the
right, Holy Comforter falls within the progressive/
settled sector. That is an assessment that I
personally believe to be accurate. The challenge to
the Vestry is how to achieve our stated goals as a
congregation, while taking into account the level of
adaptability of our congregation.
In order to help the Vestry plot our course, we will be
holding two town hall meetings to discuss how best
to obtain our stated goals and to gather information,
so the Vestry can make an informed decision as to which areas need top priority.
As a part of this process, parishioners will receive a postcard in church and three stickers. The Vestry
asks that, of all the priorities we have to work on over the next one to three years, which three do you
feel require special attention and focus.
Thank you for all you do for Holy Comforter.
Randy Cooper, Senior Warden
“Amazing Grace” House on the Mountain
By Sandy Benson
Me--hammer in nails? Use power tools? Are you kidding? That’s what I was thinking
when Susan Escobedo and Bev Simpson approached me about going on the church
mission trip to Grace House on the Mountain in the heart of Appalachia. I’m all thumbs when it
comes to tools and any “handyman” projects; it wasn’t long, however, before Susan and Bev had convinced me
that not only would the trip be loads of fun, but also I would actually be able to contribute in a significant way.
The photos below tell the story.
With Susan as our experienced leader and very patient teacher, Bev and Tom Simpson, Pat Middleton-Streett, Peg
Smith, and myself painted the inside of the community center (an old two-room schoolhouse with 16-foot
ceilings!) and built a much–needed ramp for a very ill woman.
But the trip is certainly not all work. There’s plenty of time for rest, relaxation, and sightseeing. You never
know—you might see a bear like we did! Anita and Jerry, who oversee Grace House, are an incredibly warm and
gracious couple who not only showered us with their hospitality but also worked side-by-side with us on our
service projects.
So why not join us the week of June 2—8 and experience for yourself the joy of serving as “Christ’s hands” in
Appalachia? See Susan Escobedo after church or contact her at [email protected] or 410-321-4899. I hope
some of you will decide that this trip is an exciting opportunity to do God’s work.
Guatemala Update
By Elizabeth Shire
As we get closer to June, when our goal of building a clean water and sanitation system for the El
Tablon school comes to fruition, several people have asked what would be involved in going to
Guatemala and assisting with the actual project.
The FLOW committee will be meeting at the beginning of April with Michael Curley, who recently
returned from the area. We expect to have more details about travel, lodging, immunizations,
work and cost very soon. We also hope to have a meeting after the 10 am service on April 21st
for anyone interested. Many thanks to all those who are contributing to make this a
reality. Please stay tuned!
BINGO was a Blast!!!!
On March 9th we had very successful Bingo fundraiser! We raised over $4,100.
Thanks to all who helped in supporting this fundraiser for the Pathfinders Pilgrimage to
Quebec in July!
April Children & Youth Page
April 7th
Youth and Children Christian Formation
9:00 am - Youth Classes
9:50 am - Godly Play (Elementary School Aged)
April 14th
9:00 am - Youth Classes
9:50 am - Godly Play (Elementary School Aged)
April 21st
9:00 am - Youth Classes
9:50 am - Godly Play (Elementary School Aged)
April 28th
9:00 am - Youth Classes
9:50 am - Godly Play (Elementary School Aged)
Variety Show: Calling all talent!!!! We will be having a variety show May 11th at
7 pm. Please sign up to share your gifts of singing, juggling, joke telling, dancing or
anything else you would like to share! Sign up sheet is posted on bulletin board
outside the office.
Youth Sunday: May 19th -10 o’clock service
Need Help?
The God Squad (the chosen name of the post-pilgrim older youth group) will be going on a mission
trip at the end of July. To help them fund their trip, they are offering their services to the
congregation. Do you need help with spring cleaning or yard work? Need a babysitter or dog walker?
Help with your computer?
The God Squad will work for you, and your donation will put them on the
front lines, helping someone else.
For more information , look for the God Squad flyers or talk to Carolyn Peper,
Catie Shaw, Robbie Gorman, Mathew Ridge, Phoebe Layne, Eliza Yachimowicz,
Cooper Manning or Emily Greatorex.
With the completion of the garage, the parsonage stabilization project is finished. As I
reported earlier, we had to get approval from the Landmark Commission to raze the old
garage and then a permit to replace it with a new structure. Unfortunately, because our
property is classified historic, we had to adhere to their design requirements in
replacing the garage, which cost us more than anticipated. However, it does look nice.
We now have a good, structurally sound, dry, sealed garage for storage, something we
have always needed. In addition, we have poured a new driveway from the parking lot
to the garage to replace the dirt and weeds we had before.
The cost to complete this project of stabilizing our parsonage comes to $43,000. This is
not bad considering all we accomplished. The house is now completely dry and free
from mildew and mold, the rotted window sills and other damaged wood areas have
been restored, fresh paint applied to all trim areas, main floors have been refinished,
updated wireless smoke detectors installed, electrical repairs completed, failed vacuum
windows replaced (under warranty), minor roof and chimney repairs completed. (We
will need to replace the slate roof in the foreseeable future with asphalt shingles.) We
now have an asset, which is being put to good use.
We have borrowed funds from our cash reserves and now must repay ourselves. As is
always the case, we cannot cover this expense within our budget. We have received
some donations to date to help defer this cost. I am asking once again, for all who can
help, to do so. If you are so inclined, please mark your check for “parsonage repairs.”
We have always paid for major projects in the past in this fashion as the giving in this
parish is, indeed, very generous. Thank you for your support!
Pete Hartman,
Jr Warden
“I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in
me will live, even though he dies; and whoever lives and
believes in me will never die.”
John 11:25-26
In our family
Best wishes to those with birthdays in April
Apr. 7
Dana Brinkley
Bill Hauck
Michael Albrecht
Catherine Mitchell
Cailin O’Connor
Margaret Markham
Bill Streett
And to those with
Wedding Anniversaries
Apr. 18 Rita & George Ridgely
Apr. 25 Sue & Barry Caudill
Apr. 27 Bev & Tom Simpson
Apr. 12 Susan Waesche
Apr. 14 Camille Hanson
Mac Manning
Cooper Manning
Apr. 17 Emerson Spekis
Apr. 18 Harold Thompson
Apr. 19 Gordon Langdon
Edee Stegner
Apr. 21 Will Daniels
Apr. 22 Elijah Porter
Erik Ricketson
Apr. 23 Madison Hallman
Apr. 24 Matthew Caudill
Apr. 27 David Hallman
Apr. 29 Carolyn Peper
Apr. 30 Suzanne Halabi
Scheduled Adult Formation Speakers and Topics:
April 7: Mr. Tom Simpson, Peace (Emphasis on the
Middle East)
April 14: Dr. Dan Morhaim, Death & Dying in
April 21: Mr. Mike Ruck, Sr., American Funerals
April 28: Ms. Carol Wynne, RN, The Long Goodbye
May 5: Ms. Barbara Bull, Concerns about Dying
May 12: Mrs. Fran Lodder, Grief and Grieving
Parish news
Classes are held in the Parish Hall at 9 AM - all are
welcome to attend! Note: May 12th ends the Sunday
School year...don’t forget Youth Sunday May 19th!
Thanks to
Everyone who helped plan, contributed to and participated in the Youth Basket Bingo event at St. Paul’s
Lutheran. The evening was a huge success and proceeds will support the youth pilgrimage in July.
Pat Ash, Susan Escobedo, Nor Rysticken, Peg Smith for folding Happenings/Holy Week/Easter bulletins.
Our youth and everyone who watched with Christ during our Gethsemane Vigil.
Susan Escobedo for helping beautify our church by polishing the brass door handles, and to her and Joe
for opening their home to Diamond, a lovely small dog separated from her military family by unforeseen
circumstances and awaiting reunion with them.
The Worship Commission, Altar Guild and Flower Guild for the many hours of planning and preparation for
our beautiful Holy Week and Easter services.
The Chancel Choir and Holy Comforter Ringers for their ongoing dedicated music ministry and the glorious
music provided for Holy Week and Easter. Thanks as well to Susan Escobedo for her glorious trumpet
In and out of the hospital
Sam Davis, Sharon Cruz, Sigrund Garner (Jackie Foster’s mom), Diane Lee, Charlie Phipps, Pete Hartman,
Edee Stegner, Angela Banks, Rick Boden
Deepest sympathy to
Robin and Chris Rouse on the passing of Chris’s mother, Joan; Carol Franz on the loss of her brother, Neil
Church of the Holy Comforter
130 West Seminary Avenue
Lutherville, MD 21093
Fax 410-252-7921
The Cupola is published 11 times per year for the members
and friends of this church. The deadline is the 20th of the
month preceding the issue date. E-mailed submissions are
preferred; you may also fax or place them in the Cupola
slot in the church office.
8:00 a.m. - HE Rite I in the Chapel
10:00 a.m. - HE Rite II in the Church
The Rev. Christopher Tang, Rector
The Rev. Herbert Lodder, Senior Associate Rector
The Rev. William Dunning, Pastoral Care Associate
Randy Cooper, Senior Warden
Pete Hartman, Junior Warden
Tom Simpson, Co-Junior Warden
Charles Franz, Treasurer
Sam Davis, Assistant Treasurer
Sue Willis, Registrar
Kathy Shannahan, Music Associate
Eldean Krieger, Director of Music Emeritus
Members of the Vestry
Kathy Shannahan, Administrative Associate
Eric Hunter, Sexton
Margot Allen
Pat Ash
Andy Fish
Charles Franz
Robbie Gorman
Nancy Peper
Robin Foster Rouse
Nor Rysticken
Chris Sabino
Pat Streett
Sue Willis
The Church of the Holy Comforter
130 West Seminary Avenue
Lutherville, MD 21093
April 2013
Our Mission Statement
“To be Christ’s arms of love
reaching out to this broken