St. Thomas Church
Serving God and the Community Since 1875
JANUARY 2018 NEWSLETTER
A Message from Father Given
And then there were the Twelve Days of Christmas!
We know best, these years, the celebration of Twelfth Night. This will be January 5th, usually celebrated in a downtown urban area with the streets cleared of traffic, bands playing music, celebrities, and food sold outside. The history of Twelfth Night goes back to Medieval Europe and England celebrating publicly the Eve of the Epiphany. Here was the origin of the house blessings, the making and drinking of Wassail, a mulled cider, and the blessing of apple trees for the coming year’s harvest success. Twelfth Night’s success is its concluding the previous eleven days and nights of celebrating and remembering the birth of Jesus. Decorations for this event remain throughout, trees and greens still hanging until Day 12.
The success of any celebration is that folks have a fine time, that the central event or person of the celebration is venerated, and that devotions and loyalties are renewed. We have had another fine, excellent Christmas celebration at St. Thomas. Do we wish every day was Christmas? It IS a lot of work. We like the day off from work and the gathering of family and friends also. Certainly, we wish for the special spirit of Christmas to continue, and this does, but it changes. He, Jesus, grows up. We follow Him, remember?
He grows. The Magi bring him reverence and gifts. He is quickly taken to Egypt, for his life is threatened. We follow Him back to Judea, to Nazareth. His parents Joseph and Mary take care of him. He is found sitting with the Elders in Jerusalem as a pre-teen. We follow him to the Jordan River, to the desert, to Galilee. We follow him to the Cross and beyond: Christmas, Epiphany, Lent, Easter, Pentecost, Advent. If we celebrated Christmas every day, we would keep Jesus in swaddling clothes, hold up the plan of salvation, and ourselves also remaining children who receive more than we give.
In the meantime … it is still Christmas, or Christmastide, and we celebrate the “Eleven maids a milking, the two turtledoves, and that partridge in the pear tree.” We celebrate this because we are happy that the world has received the gift of God’s love, with the grace of God’s call to always follow where He goes next.
Many thanks and much love to all of you! Thanks to all who rebuilt and launched our church float in the Ennis Christmas Parade. Thanks to the Altar Guild, and their behind the scenes helpers, for their steady attention to the decoration of our church. Thank you each one also for your steady attention to our church and the Lord Jesus Christ week by week.
Thank you for your Christmas love and generous giving that you make each year to the Christmas cards in the Green Room for Kim Devrow, Kathy Azevedo, and myself: Administrator, Musician, and Priest respectively.
Merry Christmastide, and a very blessed New Year 2018!
Faithfully yours in Christ,
Mark E Given +
Christmas Eve @ St. Thomas Church
Annual Meeting - Sunday February 4th at 11:30am
Mardi Gras - Tuesday February 13th at 6:30pm
Ash Wednesday Services - February 14th at 6:30pm
To Seek Christ in All Persons
St. Thomas’ Episcopal Mission organized in 1875. The earliest meetings of the congregation were held in the Cumberland Presbyterian Church, where Bishop Alexander Garrett made monthly visitations and ministered. The first minister was the Rev. Voss. The congregation in 1886, lost all of its furniture, church records, etc., by the burning of the building used for church and Sunday school purposes. The congregation then occupied a neat and tasteful chapel, and held services once a month, while Captain T. B. Easton, lay reader, held lay services every Sunday. (The church was built in 1888 and was located on the corner of Knox and McKinney Streets, across from the current Post Office. The building was destroyed sometime between 1915 and 1920 by a storm. (A Memorial and Biographical History of Ellis County, Texas. Published Chicago: The Lewis Publishing Company, 1892.)
The current Church was built about 1930 on the corner of Sherman and Tyler Streets. The church moved to 901 Park Street in Dec. 1987. The first service held in the new location was a wedding, May 11, 1988.
What you have said in the dark will be heard in the daylight, and what you have whispered in the ear in the inner rooms will be proclaimed from the roofs.
· Mass Every Sunday—10:00 a.m.
· Children’s Sunday School—1st, 3rd, 5th Sunday’s-9:45am-10:45am
· Luncheon—1st Sunday each month after services
· Daughters of the King—1st Wednesday of each month—6:00p.m.
· Vestry Meeting—2nd Sunday each month after services
· Office Hours—Monday, Wednesday and Friday—9a.m. to 1p.m.
Please note: The office follows the USPS Holiday Schedule
Priest in Charge
Father Mark Given (214) 906-7724, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
Kim Devrow—(972) 875-2423 Office
(214) 773-6544 Mobile
Altar Guild Director
Betty Glaspy—(972) 878-6304
Kathy Azevedo—(972) 875-8194
Class of 2018
Kathy Azevedo—(972) 875-8194, Jr. Warden
Rob Jones—(903) 654-2066
Class of 2019
Linda Waldrop - (214) 236-5381
Susan Cooks—(972) 743-4045
Class of 2020
Betty Glaspy—(972) 878-6304, Sr. Warden
Jennifer Wartsbaugh—(407) 620-4914
The Episcopal Diocese of Dallas