Entries by Sue Von

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Formation 9/27/2015

Posted 6:54 PM by
 
Forming faith in non-traditional ways ...
 
This Sunday and next we will be formation faith in an intergenerational way and we hope that you will partake in these opportunities.
 
Being Christ's Hands and Feet!
Sunday, September 27 from 9:50 to 10:35 a.m.
This week we begin a new venture between formation and outreach as we gather to make sandwiches for those who are served by Martha's Table. This organization will serve over 700,000 meals in this year in 15 different locations across the D.C. metro area.

 

They are open every day of the year and have been serving for over 35 years. Come and help us to feed those who are hungry!
 
Caring for those who depend on us!
PET BLESSING - Sunday, October 4 during the 9:00 Service! On this feast of St. Francis we will bless animals and stuffed critters as well. Please be sure that they are properly leashed or caged for their comfort and safety. 
 
We will have a special presentation during our formation time in the parish hall, complete with special treats for our furry friends. Allan Cohen, Chair of the Board of Directors  for MCPAW will give a special presentation to our community. He is a founding member of the organization and has a great love and care for the well-being of animals in our county. MCPAW serves as a partner to the Mont. Co. Animal Services & Adoption Center. They work to identify and correct the causes that make shelters necessary and provide programs and advocate for change so that animals are cared for properly. 
 
If you have any old towels or blankets or wish to send treat to the dogs and cats, 
please bring these on Sunday morning!
 
Children's Formation ...
Music will be the offering for children on Sunday, October 11 as they gather in the choir room with Michael to sing and play instruments. The choir room is assessed by walking through the youth room.
Children are back in their classrooms on the lower level on Sunday, October 18
Teachers this year include Meghan Jarvis (younger children) and Peter & Rose Sather (older room). We still need two more to join them so that we have a teaching pair for each age group. Christine Tatelbaum and Anne Taylor will be serving as formation guides (helping teachers with supplies, aiding children in need, and guiding parents). Clint Chamberlin, Nastya McNally, Alex Berger and Jessica Ault will be assisting Michael on our music days.
 
Youth Formation ... 4th-7th Grade
 
We are reforming our youth formation program this year and changing the grade levels. We hope that this will build a stronger program in the years to come.
The Coffee House will again be open in the youth room on all Sundays - other than those where there is an intergenerational event. This program will be focused on developing community and building faith of those in 4th through 7th grade. Older youth (8th through 12th grade) are being invited to serve as mentors to this younger group, assist with the children's program, or join the adult formation program on Sunday morning. Lacy Douglas and Austin Fodrie will join Sue in leading and developing this group.
Once each month we will also offer a special event for young people to come together for fun, service, community building and of course food. We will kick off this year with an event at Sandy Springs Adventure Park on Sunday, October 4!
 
Upcoming Adult Sunday Formation:
October 11: Presentation from the Economic Justice small group will share information about resolutions on economic inequality . 
October 18Mr. Paul Cooney, Canon to the Ordinary for the Diocese of Washington is our featured speaker and preacher to kick off our stewardship season.
October 25Martha's Table - Intergenerational Formation through Service. On the last Sunday of each month our formation will be intergenerational and experiential as we gather to make sandwiches for the hungry in our community.
 
L. Sue von Rautenkranz
Christian Formation Coordinator
 


 

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Formation: 9/20/2015

Posted 5:48 PM by

 

 
How does faith formation happen?
This Sunday, September 20, we will have the pleasure of hearing from  The Rev. Eva Cavaleri. For more than 20 years her ministry has been focused on faith formation of children, youth and adults working in Episcopal churches and schools in both lay and ordained capacities. She currently serves as the Senior Chaplain at National Cathedral School in Washington, D.C. Come and hear her passion for being a disciple of Christ and making disciples of Christ. She will also be our guest preacher at both services.
 
She and her husband Jorma, along with their two young sons, JD and Eli, have moved to the DC area this summer from Minnesota. They have chosen St. Dunstan's to be their faith community and we are excited to have them worship and learn with us. 
 
Upcoming Adult Sunday Formation:
October 4: Allan Cohen from MCPAW (Montgomery Co. Partners for Animal Well-being).
October 11: Presentation from the Economic Justice small group. 
October 18: Mr. Paul Cooney, Canon to the Ordinary for the Diocese of Washington.
October 25: Martha's Table - Intergenerational Formation through Service. 
 
On the last Sunday of each month our formation will be intergenerational and experiential as we gathering to make sandwiches for those in need in our community.
 
Children's Formation ...
It all begins this Sunday, September 20! Children will gather in the classrooms on the lower level in two age groups. Three, Four and Five Year Olds will be in one room and 1st through 3rd Grade will be in our other classroom. The younger group will be exploring the Old Testament this fall through story, games and crafts. Our older group will be exploring those same stories through the creation of Lego bricks. Children will be in classrooms about two Sundays each month. On the second Sunday of each month children will be learning music with Michael and on the last Sunday all ages will come together in service learning.
Teachers this year include Meghan Jarvis (younger children) and Peter & Rose Sather (older room). We still need two more to join them so that we have a teaching pair for each age group. Christine Tatelbaum and Anne Taylor will be serving as formation guides (helping teachers with supplies, aiding children in need, and guiding parents). Clint Chamberlain, Nastya McNally, Alex Berger and Jessica Ault will be assisting Michael on our music days.
 
Youth Formation ...
 
We are reforming our youth formation program this year and changing the grade levels. We hope that this will build a stronger program in the years to come.
The Coffee House will again be open in the youth room on all Sundays - other than those where there is an intergenerational event. This program will be focused on developing community and building faith of those in 4th through 7th grade. Older youth (8th through 12th grade) are being invited to serve as mentors to this younger group, assist with the children's program, or join the adult formation program on Sunday morning. Lacy Douglas and Austin Fodrie will join Sue in leading and developing this group.
Once each month we will also offer a special event for young people to come together for fun, service, community building and of course food. We will kick off this year with an event on Sunday, October 4!
L. Sue von Rautenkranz
Christian Formation Coordinator
 

 

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Formation: Homecoming Sunday 9/13/2015

Posted 5:21 PM by

 

Just TWO more ...
All we need are two more individuals or couples and we will have a full group of teachers for our children. Teams are used for both groups of children, so the time commitment is only a few hours for each teacher - one Sunday per month and just a bit of prep time. All materials and equipment is provided. It is also a great way to grow in your faith and become a better disciple, because children are great teachers of faith to adults. Please connect with Sue.
 
Children & Youth Registration
Please be sure to fill out these forms so that we can adequately prepared to received your children in our formation programs which begins in September.
If you have children who are infants through grade 5, please use this Form
If you have young people in grades 6 through 12, please use this Form
 
Youth and their parents will also need to complete the Year-long Permission form to participate in any activities that will take us off the grounds of the church.  Because this form requires a signature, it is in paper format.  Copies are available in Founders' Hall and on the youth page of the website via this link
 
Sunday Adult Formation
We will open our Sunday morning Adult formation offerings with wisdom from The Rev. Eva Cavaleri. For more than 20 years her ministry has been focused on faith formation of children, youth and adults working in Episcopal churches and schools in both lay and ordained capacities. She currently serves as the Senior Chaplain at National Cathedral School in Washington, D.C. Come and her passion for being a disciple of Christ and making disciples of Christ. 
She and her husband Jorma, along with their two young sons, JD and Eli, have moved to the DC area this summer from Minnesota. They has happy chosen to be apart of our faith community and we are excited to have them worship and learn with us. 
Come on Sunday, September 20 to hear her wisdom during our adult formation time and listen as she preaches at our services that morning. 
 
In October we will hear from our Economic Justice small group and their work on resolutions that will be presented to our diocesan convention. We will also welcome Mr. Paul Cooney, Canon to the Ordinary for the Diocese of Washington who will speak with us about the many gifts we receive from God's abundance.





 

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This Week in Formation

Posted 3:51 PM by

 

Faith Formers Needed - Our Children need YOU!
Are you called to spend just a couple hours each month with the children of St. Dunstan's? The requirements for
this ministry are a love for children and/or youth, a willingness to grow in faith with them, and the gift of your time and talents. And yes, there is an expectation of participation in a one-time class on Safeguarding God's Children. But the benefit of this ministry and how you will grow outweighs the concerns you may have. Please talk with Sue if you are interested in joining the formation leaders for this coming year.
We would especially like a few  of our men to join this group. Time commitment is only a few hours each month, as we do not have classroom activities every week.
 
Children & Youth Formation ...  
Please be sure to fill out these forms so that we can adequately prepared to received your children in our formation programs which begin in September.
If you have children who are infants through grade 5, please use this Form
If you have young people in grades 6 through 12, please use this Form
 
Youth and their parents will also need to complete the Year-long Permission form to participate in any activities that will take us off the grounds of the church.  Because this form requires a signature, it is in paper format.  Copies are available in Founders' Hall and on the youth page of the website via this link.
 
LEGOS
 
This year our older Children's Formation group will be using a new curriculum called - Building Faith Brick by Brick. This curriculum tells bible stories and encourages the children to create a portion of the story with Legos. Any and all types of Legos are desired - figures, blocks, and platforms to build on. A bin will be in Founders' Hall to accept your donations.y Legos filling up plastic bins around your house? Have your children grown out of these wonderful plastic blocks? We know just the place that needs them - St. Dunstan's!
 
 
YOUTH FORMATION
Registration is now open for the first Diocesan youth event of the year. This new event, ROOTED, for High School Students, grade 9-12, is being designed for youth who are in confirmation programs and those who are interested in growing in faith. Sue has been a part of the planning team and Tucker will be attending and assisting with the music for the event. Come and join us. September 18-20 at the Bishop Claggett Center. Information on registration is being sent to youth and parents this week.
Stayed tuned for other events and programs for all youth in the next few weeks. The Coffee House will reopen in September and plans are underway for parish and area-wide activities. These will be open to all in grades 6-12.
L. Sue von Rautenkranz
Christian Formation Coordinator
 

 

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Formation 8/16/2015

Posted 5:17 PM by

 
Faith Formers Needed
Are you called to spend just a couple hours each month with the children of St. Dunstan's? The requirements for this ministry are a love for children and/or youth, a willingness to grow in faith with them, and the gift of your time and talents. And yes, there is an expectation of participation in a one-time class on Safeguarding God's Children. But the benefit of this ministry and how you will grow outweighs the concerns you may have. Please talk with Sue if you are interested in joining the formation leaders for this coming year. We would especially like a few of our men to join this group. 
Time commitment is only a few hours each month, as we do not have classroom activities each week.
 
Children & Youth Formation ... on-line registration  
Please be sure to fill out these forms so that we can adequately prepared to received your children in our formation programs which begin in September.
If you have children who are infants through grade 5, please use this Form
If you have young people in grades 6 through 12, please use this Form
 
Youth and their parents will also need to complete the Year-long Permission form to participate in any activities that will take us off the grounds of the church.  Because this form requires a signature, it is in paper format.  Copies are available in Founders' Hall and on the youth page of the website via this link.
 
LEGOS
Do you have any Legos filling up plastic bins around your house? Have your children grown out of these wonderful plastic blocks? We know just the place that needs them - St. Dunstan's!
This year our older Children's Formation group will be using a new curriculum called - Building Faith Brick by Brick. This curriculum tells bible stories and encourages the children to create a portion of the story with Legos. Any and all types of Legos are desired - figures, blocks, and platforms to build on. A bin will be in Founders' Hall to accept your donations.
 
YOUTH FORMATION
 
Registration is now open for the first Diocesan youth event of the year. This new event, ROOTED, for High School Students, grade 9-12, is being designed for youth who are in confirmation programs and those who are interested in growing in faith. Sue has been a part of the planning team and Tucker will be attending and assisting with the music for the event. Come and join us. September 18-20 at the Bishop Claggett Center. Information on registration is being sent to youth and parents this week.
Stayed tuned for other events and programs for all youth in the next few weeks. The Coffee House will reopen in September and plans are underway for parish and area-wide activities. These will be open to all in grades 6-12.
L. Sue von Rautenkranz
Christian Formation Coordinator

 

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Homecoming Sunday

Posted 6:39 PM by

HOMECOMING SUNDAY IS JUST AROUND THE CORNER!

Mark your calendars now
Sunday, September 13!
 
                                  9:00 a.m. Family Eucharist
                                  10:00 a.m Brunch for all in the Parish Hall
                                  10:45 a.m. Traditional Choral Eucharist

Both liturgies will include the Blessing of Backpacks.

All members are encouraged to bring your backpacks, briefcases or school bags to receive a special blessing this day. We will also be collecting school supplies for The Bishop Walker School and these will also be presented and blessed on this day. So while your out shopping in the next few weeks, even if you don't need to fill a school supply list, pick up a few items for the boys. A list of items desired by the school will be available next week.

Children & Youth Formation ... on-line registration  

Please be sure to fill out these forms so that we can adequately prepared to received your children in our formation programs which begin in September.

If you have children who are infants through grade 5, please use this Form

If you have young people in grades 6 through 12, please use this Form

Youth and their parents will also need to complete the Year-long Permission form to participate in any activities that will take us off the grounds of the church.  Because this form requires a signature, it is in paper format.  Copies are available in Founders' Hall and on the youth page of the website via this link.

Faith Formers Needed

Are you called to spend just a couple hours each month with the children of St. Dunstan's? The requirements for this ministry are a love for children and/or youth, a willingness to grow in faith with them, and the gift of your time and talents. And yes, there is an expectation of participation in a one-time class on Safeguarding God's Children. But the benefit of this ministry and how you will grow outweighs the concerns you may have. Please talk with Sue if you are interested in joining the formation leaders for this coming year. We would especially like a few of our men to join this group. 
Time commitment is only a few hours each month, as we do not have classroom activities each week.
 
LEGOS
Do you have any Legos filling up plastic bins around your house? Have your children grown out of these wonderful plastic blocks? We know just the place that needs them - St. Dunstan's!
This year our older Children's Formation group will be using a new curriculum called - Building Faith Brick by Brick. This curriculum tells bible stories and encourages the children to create a portion of the story with Legos. Any and all types of Legos are desired - figures, blocks, and platforms to build on. A bin will be in Founders' Hall to accept your donations.  
L. Sue von Rautenkranz
Christian Formation Coordinator


 

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Short- Term Mission

Posted 6:24 PM by
Our Team

What happens next?

For just over eight days Tucker Hemphill and I were a part of a short-term mission team in Quito, Ecuador. We went with a group of Episcopal youth and adults from the southeast U.S. We stayed at a wonderful hostel and were treated to amazing breakfasts and outstanding hospitality. We learned more about the ministries of our missionaries Cameron and Roberto Vivanco. We did a day of touring to learn about the culture and people of Ecuador and an afternoon of shopping in the market. Most of our time was spent with the people of Buen Pastor, one of the four Episcopal congregations in the city and the home church of the children we sponsor through Education=Hope.  

Each day we would wake up fairly early, have breakfast and get on the bus for the day's activities. On the bus we would do our daily devotion, led by one of the participants. The ride took about 45 minutes to travel to the southern end of the city. Quito sits in an long valley between the mountains and the parish of Buen Pastor is the southernmost congregation in the city. The journey each day took us through the heart of the city and we would see much along the way. Children and youth headed to summer school, beggars on the streets (selling everything from toilet paper to lottery tickets), and people going about their daily affairs. From our bus windows we saw both the beauty and splendor of Quito and the reality and sadness of it's poverty.  

We also had the pleasure to meet Juana, one of the students we sponsor and Maria, her mother. We will share more of their story in the upcoming weeks. 

Cameron teaches that the most important thing about participating in a short-term mission isn't the time spent in mission, but rather what you choose to do following that experience. The fruit that you produce from what you have learned, experienced, and taken to heart. Tucker and I will be sharing more from our journey over the next few weeks and we hope that you will take the time to be in conversation with us about our fruit.
 
Sue von Rautenkranz

      Christian Formation Director




 

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Next Stop Quito!

Posted 5:25 PM by
 
Tucker Hemphill and I leave in just a few short days and my dining room table is covered with supplies to take on our journey. This Sunday, July 5, our congregation will commission Tucker and I for our short-term mission to Quito, Ecuador and the parish of Buen Pastor. On Tuesday we fly to Atlanta to meet the rest of our team and begin our work of preparing for entering a different culture and an opportunity to grow in faith. The next day we will head to Quito to meet our hosts and guides, two members of the short-term staff for the summer. Once there we will spend one day touring and learning about the culture and people of Ecuador. The following day we will begin our work at the parish of Buen Pastor. This congregation is one of the Episcopal churches in Quito and where our church currently sponsors two children to attend public school. Their priest, Juan Carlos Quiñonez is a friend that I have known for ten years and I can't wait to see him and work with him for the next week. We will spend our days continuing the work they are doing with their building projects, leading a VBS for children, teaching Sunday school, leading youth group programs and teaching youth leaders from the diocesan community. It will be a full ten days!
 
We ask for your prayers throughout our experience - July 7-17 - for safe travel, open hearts and minds, and growth in sharing our faith stories and listening to the faith stories of others. We will be sharing as much as possible through St. Dunstan's Facebook page and PYE Quito Province VI - our blog site. We will have much to share when we return.




 

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Summer Reading

Posted 6:41 PM by

Looking for a little summer reading?

Check out the lending shelf in the hallway to the parish office. We have purchased a number of books that were suggested in my last post in the Trailblazer on various LGBTQ subjects as well as help books for parents, youth and children to talk about gender, sexual identity, and sexual orientation. Also included in these books are some dealing with theological and biblical questions and understandings that have been discussed over the last decade or more. Please feel free to take these; but please return them when you are finished so other might also read.

Two of the suggested picture books for children have been placed on the children's book shelves in the parish hall - And Tango Makes Three and Jacob's New Dress. As with all books on the children's shelf, these can be read at church or taken home. Please just return them so other children may also read them.  





 

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Pride Sunday- June 7

Posted 5:38 PM by

I was fortunate to grow up in a unique household in the 60’s and 70’s. Though it was in a very monolithic community, it was a home that welcomed all and placed no barriers on who was or wasn’t included. I did have to learn, and continue to grow in my understanding of what it means to be a person of the dominant culture in this country. Yet, our home was always open and welcoming to all.  That all included members of the LGBTQ community; though in those days our world only really recognized the first two letters in that acronym. 

It wasn’t really until my teenage years and into my young adulthood that I began to discover how unique this was. Most of my friends in high school and college were not so lucky. Many were raised in households that not only didn’t talk about sexuality or sexual orientation; they didn’t acknowledge that they had family members or friends who, well, were “different.” I recall many a conversation educating others about the miss-use and derogatory nature of the word gay.

As a teenager, I remember my friends thinking it was scandalous that we had two books in our home - Dr. Ruben’s book, Everything You Always Wanted to Know about Sex, But Were Afraid to Ask and The Joy of Sex. These were much coveted by my friends - especially from those homes were sex conversations were taboo. I was also blessed to be raised by my “Aunt” Betty - who my friends referred to as the “sex lady.” She is both a licensed sex therapist and educator, who worked for years in research with The Kinsey Institute at the University of Indiana. To say there was never a question that couldn’t be asked is huge understatement.

It has also been a great blessing to sit with friends and many young people who have honored me with their first open statements and stories of “coming out;” sharing both their joy in finally being able to talk to someone about who they were and their terror of being found out by family and friends. I have sat with them as they have told their parents; and watched families welcome and reject their own. And I sat with my best friend in the last month of his life as he finally succumbed to the realities of AIDS and the cancer that ravaged his body. His parents never knowing that he was a gay man until just weeks before his death.

Why write all this? While our parish is an opening and welcoming community; there are still many Christians who use scripture and God as a weapon. We are called to witness a God who welcomes, loves and includes. We are also a church that is willing to live with questions and the unknown. There is so much that we as humans do not understand about the diversity of God’s creation. This is one of the blessings and struggles of The Episcopal Church.  And it makes us unique. We welcome both what science teaches and what scripture enlightens. Let’s embrace our uniqueness and share that with those who most need the church doors to be open and welcoming.


Sue Von
Christian Formation Director

 
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