the gift of days
the gift of days
The Franciscan
St. Francis of the Islands Episcopal Church
Wilmington Island -  Savannah, Georgia
After the Epiphany | 17 January 2019

The gift of days

The 2019 nominees for the upcoming Vestry are Charlotte Dixon, Bruce Riner, Mike Rowland, and Steve Westgate. By canon law, we will also open the floor for additional nominees at our Annual Meeting on Sunday, January 27. (See related article below.)
At our December meeting, the Vestry approved the 2019 Budget prepared by the Finance Committee under the direction of our treasurer Robert Brown. This budget reflects the generosity of the parish in our recent pledge campaign, and will be presented to the parish at the Annual Meeting. As this was the final task for the vestry to accomplish this year, and as we are about to elect new members, the Vestry will not meet this month.
Our thanks go out to Robert Brown for his continued ministry to us as Treasurer; to our retiring Vestry members: senior warden Glenn Miller, Dustin Hartley, Curtis Smith, and Wendy Walmsley; and to Kathy Riner, who will be retiring as Clerk of the Vestry, following many faithful years of service. Thank you, good and faithful servants all!
The next meeting of the Vestry will take place on Sunday, February 17, following the second service. This date follows the customary date for our meetings, falling as it does on the third Sunday in the month. Please note: I would like both outgoing and upcoming members of the Vestry to attend this meeting. 
The 2019 Vestry will also be meeting on Saturday, February 9, from 9 a.m. until Noon, with lunch to follow for a "retreat."
Our theme will be Groundhog Day Leaning into Candlemas. Our intention will be to explore the many ways we approach our days in the worried place of forecasting what's going to happen tomorrow or a month from now rather than in the liberating place of receiving this day as a holy gift. We'll explore how nostalgia for the past often finds us forecasting a gloomy future, telling ourselves things aren't like they used to be. And we'll aim our intention toward the liberating good news God prepares for us in Christ: a liberation Simeon experienced in the Temple all those years ago when, on seeing the Christ Child, he knew he had seen his salvation and could go in peace to love and serve the Lord.
In the words of Phil Connors, played by Bill Murray in the film Groundhog Day, "Well, what if there is no tomorrow? There wasn't one today."
Tomorrow isn't the day the Lord has given us to live. Nor is yesterday. Today is the day that the Lord has made, so let us rejoice and be glad in it. This to say also, 2019 is the year has made, and we're called to rejoice and be glad in it.
Children's Chapel heading toward Cana in Galilee
In Children's Chapel this Sunday, we'll enter the miracle of water turned into wine at the wedding feast in Cana. This beautiful story is the final Epiphany Story. We often forget there are three Epiphany Stories in our present season: the wise men arriving at Bethlehem, Jesus baptized in the Jordan, and water becoming wine in Cana. There's a geography lesson in there somewhere, but beyond that there is also a love story. 
Children's Chapel will meet at 9 a.m. between the services. 

Outreach News

Outreach would like to request cash donations and/or peanut butter, jelly, cookies and cat food for our monthly delivery to the Homeless Communities.  Our Blessing Bag supply needs to be replenished.  We have some restricted funds designated for our blessing bags but we will always welcome money donations and/or appropriate items for the blessing bags such as small sized hand sanitizer, soap, wash cloth, shampoo, cream rinse, toothpaste, deodorant, toothbrush, mouthwash, hand lotion, protein sources, bottled water, pens, note pads, batteries or bug spray, as you are able to help.
Every second Wednesday of the month will be out Outreach meeting at 6 p.m.
We have designated every 2nd Friday at 2 p.m. for the Outreach to meet in the Parish Hall for about 30 minutes to prepare P & J Sandwiches for the homeless community and the 2nd Saturday of each month for volunteers to meet at the Parish Hall at 9 a.m. to deliver the sandwiches, cookies, candies and cat food which takes no more than about one and half hours. A sign up sheet is in the Parish Hall for those that would like to volunteer. 

Linda Gernay, Chair

Scripture Class: Out of Exodus into Video 

On Tuesday, January 15, the Scripture Class exited our study of the Book of Exodus. The group will continue to meet on Tuesday mornings with the video series from National Geographic, "How Jesus Became God." We will meet in the EFM room to view the video presentation and discuss the topics presented. There are 24 lessons in this series. 
Serena Nasworthy read about the series in an NG catalog and the class pitched in to buy the package. Thanks, Serena and class. This will be an exciting new start for our Tuesday classes.
Study guides and transcripts for "When Jesus Became God" video presentations have been ordered.
If you are able, please participate in the Tuesday morning Eucharist service at 10:00 and come to class at 10:45. 
Renie Muhvich

Parish Office closed on January 21st for MLK Day

Join the MLK Parade on MLK Day!

The Episcopal Diocese of Georgia has a float in the Martin Luther King, Jr. Observance Day Parade in Savannah, GA, on Monday, January 21, 2019. The Diocese has participated since the event’s inception in 1985. We participate in the event by (1) marching in the parade with a float dedicated to the Diocese of Georgia, (2) holding a service of Holy Eucharist after the march at St. Matthew’s Church, and (3) hosting a concluding reception with a light lunch in St. Matthew’s Parish Hall. ALL are welcome to participate in these events.
The parade begins promptly at 10:00 AM from East Broad Street and East Liberty Street. The Diocese of Georgia's float and marchers will be somewhere in the vicinity of the East Broad Street Elementary School (400 E Broad St, Savannah, GA 31401) in the "middle of the pack.” Our float will have signs on it and, weather permitting, live musicians to lead us in song while we march. For a detailed map of the parade route, go to
Try to gather there no later than 9:30 AM. Dress appropriately for the weather since the march takes at least one hour. It is difficult to park near the starting point so plan to walk or arrange to be dropped off. Some St. Matthew’s parishioners may be able to shuttle people from the church parking lot to the parade starting point.
The parade concludes in front of St. Matthew’s Episcopal Church, 1401 Martin Luther King, Jr. Blvd, Savannah, GA 31415. We will proceed directly into the church to begin a service of Holy Eucharist. The liturgy should begin between 11:00 and 11:30 (depending on our position in the parade). Immediately following worship, join us for a reception in the St. Matthew’s Parish Hall. Those who are unable to join us for the march are still welcome to come to worship and the reception. 

ECW Meeting

Remember how much fun it was in elementary school to make valentines for special people? Join us at the January 24 ECW meeting and re-create that fun as we make valentines for the homeless community . They will be delivered along with a small gift on February 9, at the same time we deliver peanut butter  and jelly sandwiches along with a sweet treat. This monthly delivery is  an ongoing project of the outreach committee. We will serve our famous $5 lunch. So please come and share the food, fellowship, and fun. Don't forget noon on the 24th in the parish  hall!

Creation Care Team Meeting
Please join us for our first “exploratory meeting” on Thursday January 24, at 6:00 p.m. in the EFM room. We will be sharing resources and brainstorming on our vision of a Creation Care Team here at St. Francis of the Islands.  Even if you are not able to commit to being on the Creation Care Team, please consider attending this meeting to share your ideas. We are so blessed to share this beautiful church home surrounded by such natural beauty! We are excited to explore some ways that we can share our love for God’s Creation through worship, education, outreach, and service projects. Please come help us plant the seeds for this exciting new ministry. Please contact Kim Roberts at or call/text 912-358-7003 if you have any questions. Hope to see you Thursday!

News from our diocsean youth missioner:

The 2019 Diocese of Georgia Youth Mission Trip
Appalachia Service Project: Warmer, Safer, Drier
Who: All Diocese of Georgia Youth currently in Grades 8-12
When: July 13-20, 2019 and a REQUIRED RETREAT April 5-7, 2019
Cost: Estimated cost is $900. Financial Aid is available! We do not want anyone to be unable to make the trip due to financial concerns. Please contact Joshua Varner about financial aid.
What are we doing?
We will be working on making homes warmer, safer, and drier for families in the Appalachian mountains of Tennessee. Our group will be hosted by the Appalachia Service Project (ASP). ASP was founded in 1969 and it hosts, and coordinates the work of mission teams each summer and throughout the year. We will stay at one of ASP’s summer centers together with other groups and each day our work teams will go out to our assigned families and work on their houses. The specifics of our work will be based on our groups’ collective skills and talents, on what has been done by other teams in the weeks before we get there, and on what will be the most helpful for us to do for the families we will serve. We may be roofing, working on flooring, painting, or other projects entirely! We will know much more about our work before the trip begins.
An ASP Trip is not a luxury experience. We will be sleeping on air mattresses or on the floor, depending on what you bring with you! But this kind of trip is an incredible opportunity to live out our baptismal Covenant, to “seek and serve Christ in all persons, loving [our] neighbor as [ourself].”
Annual meeting 
The Annual Meeting of our parish will take place Sunday, January 27th. At that time the Vestry will present our 2019 Budget. We will hear from parish committees on their work to date and needs for next year, and elect new members to the Vestry The current nominees are Bruce Riner, Steve Westgate, Mike Rowland, and Charlotte Dixon. There will be one service that Sunday, set for 9:30 a.m., followed by the Annual Meeting, followed by our customary Fried Chicken Brunch in the Parish Hall. Please bring a side dish or dessert to share. 
If you are a committee chairman, please email your annual report to Elva. She will be compiling all reports in a booklet for distribution at the meeting. At that time, we will elect  new members to the Vestry.

CHURCH LOCKUP: January: Teri Sandford
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
January 21: Annual MLK Parade; School holiday, Parish Office closed
January 22: 10 am Holy Eucharist  & Healing Service
January 22: 10:45 a.m., Scripture Class (see above)
January 24: 12:00 p.m. ECW Meeting (see above)
January 24: 6:00 p.m. Creation care meeting (see above)

January 27: Parish Annual Meeting, ONE SERVICE, 9:30 am (see above article) 
February 9 Vestry Retreat, Living in the Light of Candlemas (with reruns of Groundhog Day)
February 15-16: Honey Creek Creekfest
February 19: Savannah Convocation Clericus at St. Francis of the Islands, Noon

Celebrant & Preacher: the Rev. Lauren Byrd; Deacon the Rev. Geri Nelson; Organist: Irina Gorb; Choirmaster: Lowell Roberts; The St. Francis Choir: Anne Acker, Gretchen Bateski, Rowan Carter, Charlotte Dixon, Mary Ann Gephart, Misty Graham, Bruce Nead, Ellen Reis, Carolyn Simmons, Joyce Tinsley, Sally Welch, Thad Welch, Marilyn Williams; LEM:Brian Kastick, Tom Bateski; Reader: Brian Kastick, Kris HowardAcolytes: Blake Handy (8:00), Haley Bowen, (10:15); Ushers: Charlie Kilpatrick, Russell Byrd, John Hamilton; Greeters: Kathy and Peter Pearson, Tara Carter; Altar Guild: CeCile Steele, Vicki Schuster, Ann Warth, Mary Locklear; Nursery: Brea Yates, Therese Nelson.
Readings  are available at The Lectionary Page

St. Francis of the Islands | 590 Walthour Rd  | 912- 897-5725
The Rev. Lauren Flowers Byrd:, 912-398-9847
Elva Wright (parish administrator):
The Rev. Geri Lee Nelson (deacon)
Vestry: Glenn Miller (Senior Warden), Teri Sandford, (Junior Warden), Langley Meredith, Dustin Hartley, Serena Nasworthy, Lowell Roberts, Curtis Smith, Gary Sullivan, Wendy Walmsley; Treasurer: Robert Brown; Clerk of the Vestry:  Kathy Riner
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