Creation Care Ministry

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St. Paul’s Creation Care team welcomes you to this vital and holy endeavor. Please join us.

Contact: Teresa Flodin or Erica Steele


Episcopalians and friends concerned about all of God’s creation are joining Presiding Bishop Michael Curry in pledging to take action to protect and renew God’s world and all who call it home. The goal is to gather at least 1,000 pledges with concrete, personal commitments.

Building from the Episcopal Vision for Care of Creation statement developed by the Presiding Bishop’s Office and the Advisory Council on Stewardship of Creation for the 79th General Convention, this pledge, and the accompanying Reflection Guide , is a tangible and practical way to show love for God’s world.

As Bishop Curry noted, “Many of us are ready to pledge and help to care for God’s creation. Like the Bible said, God so loved the world that he gave his only son. That means the real world: all of us and all of it. And this is one way we can participate in helping to care for God’s creation. This is dear and near to my heart and the heart of God.”

“We hope people understand this is more than adding your signature to a petition,” said the Rev. Melanie Mullen, director of reconciliation, justice and creation care. “Pray with the pledge and the Reflection Guide during Lent. Think about what you love in God’s Creation, where your heart breaks over environmental injustice, and how you’d like to simplify your life – consume less, share more. Then, by Easter Monday – Earth Day – let’s celebrate our shared commitment.”

Dioceses everywhere are lifting up the commitment. At her March 2 ordination and consecration as Bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Kansas, the Rt. Rev. Cathleen Chittenden Bascom and Presiding Bishop Michael Curry encouraged the congregation to take the Creation Care pledge.

The three overarching elements of both the vision and the pledge - loving, liberating, and life-giving - arise directly from the call to live as the Episcopal branch of the Jesus Movement and as people who live the Way of Love:

We long to grow loving, liberating and life-giving relationship with God’s Creation. In this urgent moment, we pledge to protect and renew this good Earth and all who call it home. Together, we commit to specific actions, trusting we can do more as a body than any person could alone.

  • LOVING: We will share our stories of love and concern for the Earth and link with others who care about protecting the sacred web of life.

  • LIBERATING: We will stand with those most vulnerable to the harmful effects of environmental degradation and climate change – women, children, poor people and communities of color, refugees, migrants.

  • LIFE-GIVING: We will change our habits and choices in order to live more simply, humbly and gently on the Earth.

The accompanying Reflection Guide was created in partnership with the Episcopal Diocese of California and includes meditations, prayers, scripture and action steps related to each element of the Pledge. The same diocese is launching a related creation care opportunity: a Carbon Tracker that helps individuals, congregations and entire dioceses to assess and reduce energy use and climate impact.


Bishop Rickel and Brian Sellers-Petersen, our Missioner for Agrarian Ministries, introduce the new carbon tracker developed by the Diocese of California. The tracker is easy to use - you create your household profile, browse the list of actions you can take to reduce your impact on the environment, add them to your dashboard, and the tracker will provide you with the next steps you need to take.


A Prayer for Our Time and for the Earth

Dear God, Creator of the earth, this sacred home we share;

Give us new eyes to see the beauty all around and to protect the wonders of creation.

Give us new arms to embrace the strangers among us and to know them as family.

Give us new ears to hear and understand those who live off the land and to hear and understand those who extract its resources.

Give us new hearts to recognize the brokenness in our communities and to heal the wounds we have inflicted.

Give us new hands to serve the earth and its people and to shape beloved community.

For you are the One who seeks the lost, binds our wounds and sets us free, and it is in the name of Jesus the Christ that we pray.

Amen.

From Bishop Carol Gallagher
Offered at the House of Bishops Fall 2017 Gathering in Fairbanks, Alaska


Operations Committees

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Facilities Planning Committee

Promotes a holistic approach toward the utilization of all St Paul facilities by being responsive to church and community needs and requests, maintaining a policy driven decision-making process that promotes clarity and consistency, allows for change as circumstances change, and establishes and maintains a transparent scheduling and fees assessment process. The committee works closely with the Operations Manager.

Facilities Planning Committee contact Rob Vollkommer

 

Long Range Planning Committee

Assures the continued health and growth of St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, by focusing on a three to five year horizon, evaluating and recommending long range staffing and lay leadership needs, being nimble and flexible to new/different/better ideas and structures, and embraces change as is necessary, and listening and being faithfully guided and informed. Meets quarterly. Some confidentiality required.

Long Range Planning Committee.. The Rev. Jonathan Weldon, Rector

 

Memorial and Arts Committee

Appointed by the Rector, this Committee meets quarterly to review the appropriateness and placement of any proposed art, furniture, windows, icons, etc. at St. Paul’s. The Committee oversees the church archives, and may also suggest art or art ideas for the church.

Memorial & Arts Committee  Kathy Oberg

 

Personnel Committee

Assures the consistent application of HR norms by benchmarking St Paul’s human resource (HR) policies against those of other parishes, the Diocese and community entities including but not limited to salary and benefits, promoting the implementation of Mutual Ministry practices, and serving as a HR resource for the Rector.

Personnel Committee ................................................. Rob Vollkommer

 

Communications Team

The Communications Ministry Team is established under the leadership of the Communications and Operations Manager to plan, improve, coordinate and maintain all communication strategies of this extremely busy parish.

Parishioners with experience in written, audio, or visual communications methods are welcome. A willingness to learn and a sense of journalism are especially appreciated.

Contact: Myra Ryneheart Corcoran at the church offices.

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Emergency Preparedness Ministry

The Emergency Preparedness Ministry provides guidance and information for St. Paul's Parish and for the greater Bellingham community to prepare for a natural disaster in our area. One of the primary functions is to compile and prepare a database of all St. Paul's parishioners. If you have not done so, please fill out this form and add yourself to our database:

Being prepared for a disaster is an important pastoral obligation. By preparing for a disaster, the congregation is demonstrating God’s love for its own members and for the surrounding community. The parish, as the basic body of believers in the Episcopal Church, is called to good stewardship of church property. … Moreover, each parishioner is called to be the keeper of his or her brother and sister, and in particular to care for the “least of these.” (from “A resource manual developed by Province IV of the Episcopal Church” Published Lent 2009)

Contact: George or Randi Sanders

 

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The American Red Cross first aid app should be on every phone. It’s free! Here is the link to get it.
http://www.redcross.org/get-help/how-to-prepare-for-emergencies/mobile-apps
This application has first aid instructions, disaster preparation ideas, knowledge quizzes, links to sign up for classes… and more.

 

Prepare yourself, your kit, your plan, your info...

Prepare Yourself

Signup for First Aid and Community Emergency Response Training (CERT) classes by clicking on these links:

Red Cross  

CERT

Prepare Your kit

Click to download

Click to download

 A low-stress, month-by-month checklist to help you be prepared. Provided by the Washington State Emergency Management Division (WA-EMD). This is taken from the series “Prepare in a Year”.

 

This is taken from the series “Prepare in a Year” and includes the entire document. Remember, one hour of disaster preparedness activity each month helps you be ready for disasters – whenever they occur.

Prepare Your plan  

Your kit is only as good as the Family Disaster Plan you have to go with it. For ideas and tips to get started on your family plan check out this publication by Washington State Emergency

Prepare Your Information 

Make sure your family has a plan in case of an emergency. Before an emergency happens, sit down together and decide how you will get in contact with each other, where you will go and what you will do in an emergency. Keep a copy of this plan in your emergency supply kit or another safe place where you can access it in the event of a disaster. 

One good reason to use a pillow.

Message: In a disaster: Protect your head, hands, and feet. Use your pillow to cover your head in the event of an earthquake while you are in bed.
Keep a pair of shoes, glasses and a flashlight under the bed, for quick action! This goes for every member of your household.

Prepare your Family

How a child copes with disaster or emergencies is often tied to the way parents cope, because a child can detect an adult’s emotional state.

 

  • Ensure children are included in preparedness conversations

  • Learn the building blocks of preparedness − Be Informed, Make a Plan, Build a Kit and Get Involved.

  • Know the emergency plan for your child’s school and child care facility

  • Practice evacuation plans and other emergency procedures with children on a regular basis

  • Learn different ways to help children cope during and after an emergency

  • Make sure children have emergency contacts memorized or written down in a secure place

  • Teach kids when and how to call important phone numbers like 911

  • Help your children understand the importance of preparedness using these online games: https://www.ready.gov/kids/games

Prepare your Vehicle

During a disaster, you may be away from home or forced to leave your home. Keeping your vehicle in good working order, keeping an emergency supply kit in you vehicle and knowing how to drive in difficult conditions can help you through any emergency.

Prepare your Phone

The Winter Survival Kit smartphone app developed by NDSU helps individuals stranded during a winter storm find their current location, dial 911, notify friends and family of their situation/location, and calculate how long they can run their engine to keep warm while staying safe from carbon monoxide poisoning.  It is available for free for both Android and iPhone smart phone users. Click these links to gain access.

How will you stay charged when the power goes out? Do you have a USB adapter which will enable you to re-charge your device with your car battery? Have you ever tried re-charging without using everyday wall outlet power? You know you’ll have to eventually, so now’s the time to try out some of the many solutions out there – Be Prepared!

FEMA cell phone app

Red Cross First Aid phone app

Prepare your Neighborhood

The Map Your Neighborhood program guides you and your neighbors through simple steps to help enhance your preparedness for an emergency. These steps will help you to quickly and safely take actions that can minimize damage and protect lives. It is designed to improve disaster readiness at the neighborhood level and teaches neighbors to rely on each other during the hours or days before fire, medical, police or utility responders arrive. Here is a link:

Map your Neighborhood program

General Preparedness Tools

A Season of Resilience consists of 5 weekly sheets to guide you through preparing your home and family for coping with a disaster.

 

Do 1 Thing each month to prepare for all hazards and become disaster resilient. The plan breaks preparedness down into 12 manageable steps. With Do 1 Thing you take small steps that make a big difference.

 

This is a comprehensive manual published in 2009 by Province IV of the Episcopal Church. It includes background information and forms for tasks (for individuals all the way up to Diocesan office staff). Click on these links:

Episcopal Relief and Development (ERD) resource library

FEMA website  (source of the pamphlets in our kiosk)

Grounds and Gardens Team

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From Father Jonathan: "Our grounds look really good, and that’s because a group of people gather on Mondays to weed and tend our gardens. Thanks to Laurel Cook, Pat Weitnauer, Kristi Champagne, Dick Whitmore, George Haynes, Greg Dibble, Jerry Van Sambeek, and Rocky Champagne for their work making things beautiful!  We can all be happy about the way St. Paul’s building and grounds look."

If you would like to help out, just show up on Mondays at 8:30 AM during the growing season, and we'll put you to work. For more information, contact Rocky Champagne or Dick Whitmore.

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Finance Committees

The finance committee reports to the Vestry, they create the annual budgets, administer the day to day finances of the church and recommend major expenditures for a vote of the Vestry.

The finance committee has fiduciary responsibility for the dealings of St. Paul's


Budget Committee

A subset of the Finance Committee, this team meets on the second Monday of most months at 9:00 a.m.; the team gathers information from key lay leaders to create a draft annual budget for the Finance Committee.

Contact: Jim Beckwith


Planned Giving Committee

Guides the congregation is a process to bequeath planned gifts to the church as a part of end of life considerationa

Contact Ed Sugar

Vestry

St. Paul's Vestry

In the Episcopal church, the vestry members are the ruling committee and legal representatives of the church. They provide leadership and management of the matters of the church under Canon Law. St. Paul's Vestry is composed of 12 non-Clergy members. The Rector is also a member of the Vestry.

Leadership includes tasks such as Discerning a vision for the future, Articulating and Communicating the Vision, Generating enthusiasm and "buy-in" from the congregation, Setting the tone for leadership and serving as an example to the congregation.

Management includes all matters of Budgeting, Establishing and Enforcing Policies and Procedures, Establishing Action Plans and Maintaining Property.

The vestry meets on the third Monday of each month at 6:30 PM on the lower level of the Education wing. Feel free to contact any of the members of the Vestry at any time with issues of church function or anything else on your mind. To get on the agenda for a vestry meeting, contact the Senior Warden.

Vestry members are elected by the congregation at the annual meeting and serve a three year term.

To attend a vestry meeting, just show up.

Stewardship Team

Inspires the will and energy of all members of the church to

  • Find value in offering their time and treasure in thanksgiving to the furthering of our mission.

  • Planning and offering year-round stewardship education

  • Executing the fall pledge campaign

Stewardship, in spite of its reputation, is not just about money.

It is about all that we do in our lives. Stewardship is about all that we do after we recognize that God has given us everything that we have.

It is a Christian's fundamental belief that God is the creator of all that is. Even the skills that we use in our life, to earn a living or just use for fun, come from God. If we are successful, we are successful because we have worked hard using God's gifts.

Once this knowledge becomes part of our lives, the question is, "How do we respond to God's gifts?"

God gives these gifts freely. We cannot repay them. We can only use them in service of God's work as an act of thanksgiving. As it says in Ephesians 2:8-10, “For by grace you have been saved through the gift of God – not as the result of works, so that no one may boast. For we are what he has made us, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand to be our way of life.”

Another thing we believe is that God creates and represents abundance, not scarcity. Much of our life is controlled by a sense that there is not enough, so we strive to control all that we can to assure that we get what we need.  This makes us selfish, mean, and unhappy. It is also counter to what God is telling us we should be. 

Jesus calls us to be loving, caring and giving. Jesus tells us that if we would have life, we need to die to self. How different the world would be if we truly lived the way Jesus calls us to live. We would find that God provides enough for the whole world and it is only our selfishness and greed that causes scarcity.

We invite you to join us as we strive to learn what these truths mean in our life and work to make them our guiding principles in our daily living. 

Contact: Jim Beckwith

Reception Ministry Volunteers

Reception Ministry Volunteers help St. Paul's fulfill its mission by manifesting the love of Christ in hospitality during church office hours, answering both the door and the phones.

The ReceptiMinisters assist visitors to the church building, update the hymn board,
help parishioners find information, materials or meeting spaces, and assist with various short-term office projects. Volunteers may work one or more 2.5 hour shifts each week, working around their schedule and availability.

We are always looking for substitutes and short- or long-term volunteers. Contact Myra in the church office.