New Rector announcwement and Picnic Wednesdays
New Rector announcwement and Picnic Wednesdays
The Franciscan
St. Francis of the Islands Episcopal Church
Seventh Sunday of Easter |20 May 2020

REOPENING is a Matter of Definition
     We are all looking forward to our church “reopening.”  But my experiences at St. Francis this past week have made clear to me that we never “closed.”
      Following best medical practices and the dictates of our bishop, we have ceased to offer Sunday morning public services of worship.  But I have come to realize that those services form only a piece of who we are as a community of faith.  Last Wednesday we gathered (apart, yet together) in our lovely grove, the picnic area behind the church building.  We shared the lunches we each had packed for ourselves, and we visited with each other.  Some of us were spread out among the picnic tables and benches, and some of us brought our own chairs.  While we ate, we talked, and talked, and then talked some more.  It was so good to be in each other’s company.
     Sunday morning, we had our bread-sharing event on the Sid Daniel patio outside our parish house.  Individuals and families arrived, spread out between 8:00 and 11:30.  When the Kasticks came, Roane and Robert rang our bell.  It was glorious to hear that sound in the air.  Again, we had opportunity to catch up with each other in conversation.
      The thing I noticed about the conversation in each of these opportunities was that folks just picked up where they had left off, the way that good friends do.  This is the part of St. Francis that never closed.  Indeed, we are the Church.  We are the Body of Christ.
      There is so much excitement that is part of our life now.  We know who our next rector will be.  We hear from him that he is excited to be joining us in our community of faith.  We are beginning to receive guidelines from the bishop’s office as to the things that will need to happen when we do resume worship on Sunday mornings.  There are marked feelings of anticipation.  However, in the midst of this anticipation, I am ever so thankful for the now, the now of our Picnic Wednesdays, the now of our friendships with each other and the genuine concern that comes with those friendships.  We are demonstrating to ourselves that we are not defined by the architecture that surrounds us, but rather by the love that connects us.  Giving thanks, Bev+


 I can now announce our new rector is the Reverend Ian Lasch.
Ian has written a wonderful letter of introduction, see below. and includes much more information. Ian will be starting with us on August 01.
This is very exciting for the Saint Francis family!
Mike Rowland, Sr. Warden

Dear People of God at St. Francis of the Islands,
            I am thrilled to be writing you as the next Rector of St. Francis. I can’t wait to meet you all, to get to know you, and to explore the future that God has planned for us together.
I feel a little bit like coming to St. Francis is like coming home. Your search committee and vestry have certainly made me feel right at home, and in a fun coincidence, I grew up at another St. Francis (a United Methodist Church in Charlotte, North Carolina). My mother-in-law lives about a mile from the church building, and I had my candidacy interviews prior to ordination in St. Francis’s education wing.
A bit of background about me: I was born and raised in Charlotte, and my parents still live close by, in North and South Carolina. I joined the Army straight out of high school and served as an Arabic translator for five years in the Army and then another seven as a civilian contractor with the Army and Air Force. In the military, I was stationed in Augusta, where I lived for a decade and met my wife Loren. It was in Augusta, and the Diocese of Georgia, that I came to the Episcopal Church and eventually discerned a call to the priesthood. I attended Virginia Theological Seminary (class of 2016), and was ordained a deacon at St. Paul’s in Savannah before moving following graduation to serve as Associate Rector of St. Peter’s Episcopal Church in Ladue, Missouri. For the past two years I’ve had the pleasure of serving as the Rector of Grace Episcopal Church in Jefferson City, Missouri. I believe strongly in the threefold role of the priesthood as pastor, priest, and teacher, and I look forward to growing in faith as we are formed more fully together into the Body of Christ on Wilmington Island. I’m also a tremendous nerd, and an equally tremendous Cleveland sports fan.
My wife Loren will be serving as the Canon to the Ordinary for the Diocese of Georgia, a fact of which I am quite proud, and which will mean regular visits to other congregations. When not otherwise occupied, though, she looks forward to worshiping with us at St. Francis.
Loren and I have two sons: Elias (age five) and Ezra (who just turned three). Elias has one of the kindest hearts I’ve ever encountered, and Ezra is a cuddly force of nature (we compare him often to the Tasmanian Devil or Animal from the Muppet Show).
            While these are strange times that we’re living in, I can’t tell you how excited my family and I are to get to know you all and to make St. Francis of the Islands our new home. I can’t wait to see what God has in store for us.
You have all been in my prayers throughout this search process, and I will continue to pray for you all as this time of transition continues. Stay well, and I look forward to seeing you all soon.    
Grace and peace,
“No Sunday worship for the foreseeable future,” repeated words from our Bishop.  We want to abide by that prudent directive, sad as the situation may be.
SO ………. how about this?  Instead of Sunday worship, we have ……..
                      PICNIC WEDNESDAY!

We have a lovely outdoor area, with conveniently spread-apart picnic tables, waiting to become an alternative gathering-while-distancing spot.  Should we run out of table space for distanced seating, we can get folding chairs from the Parish Hall and properly scatter ourselves throughout our lovely glen.
12:00 noon
                                    Wednesday May 20th
weather permitting
Bring your own lunch box or bag lunch, including a drink, and your own utensils. Bring your own insect repellent, just in case.
I am really looking forward to this.  If this scheme is within your personal comfort level, I hope to see you there.     Bev+


Due to the rain forecast the Pizza Food truck has postponed until NEXT week, Wednesday, May 27th, 5:00 to 7:30. 


During the absence of services due to the virus, please keep in mind our operating expenses continue and you may and should continue your pledging schedule and are welcome to mail your pledge to the church. Thank you to all who can do that.
Sr. Warden, Mike Rowland

CHURCH LOCKUP:  May: Michael Kastick
Sign up lists are in the parish hall for altar flowers, sanctuary candles, and refreshments.
ANNOUNCEMENTS:  Announcements for the Sunday bulletin and/or this newsletter should be in the office no later than noon on TUESDAY.  Call 912-897-5725 or email
        All public Services cancelled until further notice.
Noon, Picnic Wednesdays (see above)
May 27: 5:00 -7:30 p.m. Big Bon Pizza (see above)


Readings are available at The Lectionary Page

St. Francis of the Islands | 590 Walthour Rd  | 912- 897-5725

The Rev. Beverly Braine - Priest in Charge:
Elva Wright (parish administrator):

Vestry: Mike Rowland (Senior Warden), Bruce Riner, Steve Westgate (Junior Wardens), Charlotte Dixon, Michael Kastick, Serena Nasworthy, Gary Sullivan; Treasurer: Robert Brown; Clerk of the Vestry: Kathleen Hodges

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