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Message from Pastor Andrew

Praise the Lord. Praise the Lord from the heavens;
praise him in the heights above.
Praise him, all his angels; praise him, all his heavenly hosts.
Praise him, sun and moon; praise him, all you shining stars.
Praise him, you highest heavens and you waters above the skies.

Let them praise the name of the Lord, for at his command they were created,
and he established them for ever and ever – 
he issued a decree that will never pass away.

Praise the Lord from the earth, you great sea creatures and all ocean depths,
lightning and hail, snow and clouds, stormy winds that do his bidding,
you mountains and all hills, fruit trees and all cedars,
10 wild animals and all cattle, small creatures and flying birds,
11 kings of the earth and all nations, you princes and all rulers on earth,
12 young men and women, old men and children.

13 Let them praise the name of the Lord, for his name alone is exalted; his splendor is above the earth and the heavens.
14 And he has raised up for his people a horn, the praise of all his faithful servants, of Israel, the people close to his heart.

Praise the Lord.

~ Psalm 148

As I sit and write this newsletter, we, here at St. James, are gearing up for Fall programing.  It’s hard to believe our summer is quickly coming to an end.  If you’re anything like me, while the summer is a nice time to slow down a bit, you’re looking forward to cooler weather and to the changing of the leaves.  One of the things Christina and I share is our love for Fall.  And there are few better places to be at that time of year than Adams County.

In the life of the Church, you could say, that the Fall season is a time coming back together.  Our summer vacations are behind us.  The school year and its many activities have begun.  And our church calendar follows suit – Committees are in full swing, as are our Sunday school programs, our various youth groups, our weekly Bible studies and choir rehearsals, the list goes on.

Thanks to a lot of coordination between our Stewardship Committee, our Creation Care Task Force, our Worship and Music Committee, and others, our worship life here at St. James this Fall will center around the theme of Stewardship. 

We’ll kick things off by gathering up at Nawakwa on the evening of September 1 along with some seminarians for a time of food and fellowship followed by a brief worship service in the woods.  Plan to join us!  No need to bring anything (other than maybe a friend!).  From here, our weekly worship services will draw our focus on the blessings of God’s good creation and how we are called to care for it, then onto our stewarding of time, talent, and treasure. 

In addition to our worship, we’ll be getting to work and having some fun as well. 

As you know by now, as a congregation we’re participating in the Keystone 10 million Trees Partnership, adding to the goal of planting 10 million native trees and shrubs in Pennsylvania by 2025.  Our Creation Care Taskforce has set the St. James Tree Planting Challenge goal at 250 trees planted.  Let’s see if we can reach the pastors goal of 500!  Participating is simple.  Just go to adamswatersheds.org and fill out the form, making sure to check the St. James Tree Planting Challenge box, and select as many trees/shrubs you would like.  Everything needed to plant is provided (minus a shovel and a bit of muscle), and there’s no cost. 

On Sunday, September 18, we’ll gather at the Vossler Farm for our annual Fall Festival and Pet Blessing for a time of food and fellowship.  Then, as a part of our celebration of St. Francis, the day we give thanks for our furry friends, we have invited the Steppin’ Woofs (a dancing dog group) to come and perform on Sunday, October 2 at 9:30 a.m. during the Sunday school hour. This would be a wonderful opportunity for our youth to bring friends and for our young at heart to bring grandkids! 

In all of this planning I am reminded of how blessed we truly are here at St. James.  The people, the gifts and talents, the knowledge, the creativity and willingness to think outside of the box, the faith, the commitment to God and all that God has made. 

As we transition from Summer to Fall and begin to reflect on how we are called to live as faithful stewards, my personal prayer for us as a congregation is that we would truly take the time to praise the Lord as the psalmist calls us to.  That we would pause amidst the busyness of life to notice and give thanks for the countless blessings God has provided us.  From the smallest organism to the tallest redwood, to the water we drink and the air we breathe, to the animals of land, sea, and sky, to the people around us, to the time and talents we have been given, to the resources we have.  And too, that this praise – this reflecting on and giving thanks for God’s countless blessings – would be mirrored in how we live out our daily lives.  That we would be a blessing to God’s good creation and all that is a part of it as God created and calls us to be.  That we would give back to God with our time, our talent, and our treasure joyfully and generously in response to the one who gave everything for us.  

Praise the Lord. Praise the Lord from the heavens; praise him in the heights above.

~Pastor Andrew

Worship Previews

August 7—Ninth Sunday after Pentecost

Jesus says, “It is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom.” It is God’s promise from the beginning—to Abraham, to the early church, and to the “little flock” of which we are a part in today’s assembly. Faith, God’s baptismal gift, trusts the promises of God. Have no fear.

Readings: Genesis 15:1-6 | Psalm 33:12-22 | Hebrews 11:1-3, 8-16 |Luke 12:32-40

August 14—Tenth Sunday after Pentecost

The word of God is a refining fire. Jesus is the great divide in human history. He invites our undivided attention and devotion. Today in worship we are surrounded by a great “cloud of witnesses.” In the word and in holy communion we are invited yet again to look to Jesus, “the pioneer and perfecter of our faith.”

Readings:  Jeremiah 23:23-29 | Psalm 82 | Hebrews 11:29–12:2 | Luke 12:49-56 

August 21—Eleventh Sunday after Pentecost

Remember the sabbath day. Call the sabbath a delight. This is the Lord’s day, and the Lord will do for us what the Lord does: feed us, forgive us, help and heal us. Rejoice at all the wonderful things God is doing.

Readings:  Isaiah 58:9b-14 | Psalm 103:1-8 | Hebrews 12:18-29 | Luke 13:10-17

August 28—Twelfth Sunday after Pentecost

Invited and inviting—that is the nature of the church. By God’s grace in holy baptism we have a place at Christ’s banquet table. When, by the power of that same Spirit, humility and mutual love continue among us, the church can be more inviting still.
Readings: Proverbs 25:6-7 | Sirach 10:12-18 (alternate) | Psalm 112| Hebrews 13:1-8, 15-16 | Luke 14:1, 7-14

Council Corner

July 20 Council Meeting Highlights

Treasurer’s Report
Karen Lentz presented the June financial statements.  The church has a gain of $12,693 for the year (YTD), though the church is not fully staffed.  The Early Learning Center has a net profit of $2,725 YTD.  Karen noted that the profit and loss sheet indicated a Sunday School offering of $10,000, which is an error, it should be zero; the entry in QuickBooks has been corrected.  Council accepted the financial reports unanimously. 

Committee & Task Force Reports
Personnel made a recommendation to Council to hire Megan Fitzpatrick as Administrative Coordinator, a part-time position.  Megan will work in the office 20-22 hours per week.  Motion carried unanimously.

Personnel made a recommendation to Council to make a salary adjustment to the Church Administrator position, currently held by Katy Clowney.  The salary increase was justified by keeping the wages competitive with similar positions, and demonstrative of the responsibilities and leadership in which Katy displays at St. James.  Motion carried unanimously.

Old Business
The Call Committee has offered two information-gathering sessions, an online survey, and a hard copy survey for the congregation to give input in the call process. 

New Business
A New Members Class is set for August 14, individuals have been in communication with Pastor Andrew.  Jason Howe, Brie Howe, Debra Baker, Cara Russo, Briah Russo, Kirby Scott, Kristine Scott, Frank George, Hazel George and Brice Gardner have bee accepted as new members following a motion and second by Peggy Green and Ann Ketterman, respectively. 

Good for Church/Council/God
Pastor Andrew commented that he missed worship services for two weeks in a row due to illness and quarantining. He thinks this is the first time in his life that this has happened. He is thankful and considers it a blessing that Pastor Clif and the church staff stepped in and covered all the bases. He is especially thankful to Pastor Fritz Foltz who led worship and preached on one of those weekends.

Youth News

We never know when the next time we do something we love will also be the last time we do it.

The last time I played organized baseball was when I was 20 years old. I define “organized” as wearing sliding pants and a button-down jersey while playing against another team donning a similar uniform.

I remember calling my coach and telling them my work schedule was too busy and my playing time too sparse to continue my favorite pastime for the summer. Had I known when I was taking my last swings, chasing down my last fly ball, and breaking out of a huddle, that it would be the final time, I would have savored the feelings so much more.

So far this summer, we’ve had a lot of fun with the kids. We swam in one lake and kayaked over another. We climbed a waterfall, we performed aerial flips leaping off of expansive trampolines, we’ve done cannonballs off the diving board at the Dunlops’ pool (sorry Jim and Julie), and we’ve coated our friends in paintball splatter. I hope these are traditions that live on for many years to come.

But more recently, at the end of our sessions I’ve asked our students to take three to five minutes of solitude to consider — what if this is the last chance we get a chance to be a part of these activities?

What elements have inspired unexpected joy, fear, and excitement? What experiences will stick in our minds as we hope to recreate this memory in the future? The wind in the trees? The sound of the water rocking our kayaks? Sunlight gleaming off the rippling water?

A more advanced version of this exercise is to ask what God is trying to tell us in that moment. For now, I hope to help students learn to listen, to pay attention, and to understand gratitude arises from focusing our attention on God’s great gifts. To know that even in simple things, there can be found an abundance of richness and joy.

This is not an exercise simply for the youth. I hope everyone in the congregation will take a moment to experience stillness in moments of indulgence. Watching a sunset. Listening to a babbling brook. Eating a piece of chocolate cake. Whooping it up with your friends after stealing a win in walk-off fashion. Kissing your partner.

We give thanks to God for all these things and more.

In Christ’s love,

Adam

Operation Christmas Child:  August Gifts

Operation Christmas Child is a project of Samaritan’s Purse. Last year as a congregation, we collected and filled 50 shoe boxes and we are aiming for 60 boxes this year.

Each month we will have a short list of items we are collecting to place in the shoe boxes.  We will collect a variety of items, and then will assemble the boxes in November.  We will notify you in The Messenger each month what our ideas are for that whole month. Remember the items are going to be for children ages 2 through 9 years old.

The month of August we will collect

  • Pens & Pencils
  • Pencil Sharpeners
  • Notebooks
  • Coloring Books
  • Crayons & Markers
  • Solar Calculators

Also, if you would like to give a monetary donation to help defray the cost of the boxes or helping with shipment, that would be appreciated, too.

Last year we were overwhelmed with the congregation’s generous response and look for it to be even more successful this year!

We are also looking for a few people to help to organize the items ahead of time and to help the day (or days) we pack the boxes with the Sunday School children. Please contact Shirley Sanders or the office to volunteer for this project. Thank you!

For more information about Samaritan’s Purse and Operation Christmas Child, you can visit their website at samaritanpurse.org.

All Creation Sings

We are looking forward to celebrating the Season of Creation – eight weeks of focus on creation care and stewardship. Pastor Andrew is addressing this season in depth in his article this month. I will focus on how this season will be celebrated in our services and invite you to an opportunity to prepare.

The scripture readings, sermons, liturgical texts, and music will reflect on each week’s theme – Cosmos, Sky, Land, Ocean, Fauna, Humanity, Time and Talent, and Treasure. Pastor Andrew and I worked together to create a liturgy for the season, pulling from various sources, and from our own writings. One of those sources is a new hymnal supplement from Augsburg Fortress entitled All Creation Sings.

In recent years, the church-at-large has become more aware of the importance of caring for the earth and its resources. Hymn writers have been moved to address creation issues like never before and many of these new texts have been included in the supplement. All Creation Sings includes two new settings of the communion liturgy. We will use setting twelve, which incorporates language sensitive to creation issues.

Singing a new liturgy for the first time is exciting but can also be intimidating. Five or six new songs that no one has ever heard before is a big ask. Therefore, I am inviting you to hear and sing this music in an informal setting on Sunday, August 21, and again on Sunday, August 28. Both music electives are identical and will begin at 9:30 a.m. in the music room. Please consider attending one of these music electives so that you will feel more comfortable singing the new liturgy when it begins on September 4.

Call Committee Updates

Our Call Committee at St. James has made some significant progress in gathering the thoughts of our Congregation about who we are together as the faith community of St. James, the mission to which God is calling us and the type of person we need as our next Associate Pastor.

On Sunday, June 26 & July 24, we held listening sessions during the Sunday school hour. This was held in the nave and open to everyone. We asked 8 important questions and invited those present to share freely. We would like to thank all of you who joined us for these events, your input is very important to us.

We spent some time with Pastor Andrew to get his thoughts on the type of person who would mesh well with his style and talents. We are currently enjoying the good works of a very cohesive staff here at St. James and it is very important to preserve that dynamic when we invite a new Associate Pastor to join us.

We have prepared a written survey that all members of our Congregation should answer. It has both multiple choice questions as well as opportunities to provide your direct input for the Ministry Site Profile.

The survey is available through August 8.  You may access it via:

We hope you are able to complete it by August 8.

When in conversation with others, please encourage them to complete the survey, or help them get their hands on a paper copy.

As we continue in this process, we ask that you pray for our committee. Two appropriate Bible verses for our tasks come from the Book of Proverbs:

Proverbs 3:5-6

Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your path straight.

Proverbs 11:14

Where there is no guidance, a people falls, but in an abundance of counselors there is safety.

Yours In Christ,

Lucinda Bringman, Amy Crist, Jim Flanagan, Ernie Kranias, Glenn Munsee, Kasey Smith, Anne Lane, committee alternate, and Shirley Sanders, Congregation Council Liaison.

Contact information available from the office.

Next Up:  Survey Submission Deadline:  Monday, August 8

Looking Ahead

September 7—K-5 Youth Group Starts

September 8 —Choirs Resume
Martin Luther Choir at 6:00 p.m. & Adult Choir at 7:00 p.m.

September 11—God’s work. Our hands. Sunday
Gathering at Volunteer Sites at 1:00 p.m.
Sign-up for Volunteer Opportunities:  signup.com/go/ntbndVf

September 18—Fall Festival & Blessing of the Animals
at Tom & Barbara Vossler’s Farm
Come out for our annual fall festival picnic.  Games, food, and fellowship. 

September 27—Gettysburg Community Concert Association
Sophie Shao, cellist, performing at St. James. 

Welcome All Knotters

Hallelujah!  The St. James Quilt Committee will once again have 30+ quilts ready for the final step of knotting. It is always fun to spread the quilts on several tables and catch up with one another as we knot.

Come join us on Monday, October 17 and Tuesday, October 18 from 9:30 a.m. until noon. Let’s get these quilts ready to send to the Lutheran Disaster Relief and Recovery Quilt Mission.

If you can tie your shoes, you can KNOT a quilt!

SPECIAL THANKS TO BARBARA NICKS who has planned, cut, pieced, pinned, stitched and knotted 10 quilts at home this year.  She is our St. James SUPER QUILTER for 2022! Did you know she also makes dresses for little girls using old and new pillow cases for the Little Dresses for Africa mission? 

Relay for Life & Luminaria Ceremony

Relay For Life of Adams County is being held on Saturday, August 20 from 5:00 p.m. until 10:00 p.m. at Oakside Park in Biglerville. RFL supports the American Cancer Society and raises funds and awareness to all the programs it offers. The Luminaria Ceremony will be held at 8:00 p.m. It is a time to remember those gone, support present cancer patients and celebrate and honor survivors.

Shirley Sanders is the committee chairman and a team Captain.  Amanda Bair is part of St. James Miracle Workers team and will be the guest speaker. Pastor Andrew will offer the opening prayer. All are welcome to come throughout the Relay, to support this event and congregation members and to hear Amanda speak.

There will be music, food, bingo, basket raffles, activities and entertainment and emotionally charged ceremonies for the entire family. 

If you would like to sponsor the Miracle Workers in their walk to fight cancer, you can contribute at www.relayforlife.org/paadamscounty, click the “DONATE” button, and search “Miracle Workers” and select “Relay for Life of Adams County presented by WellSpan Health.”

To join the Miracle Workers relay team, please see Amanda Bair or contact her at abair247@gmail.com.

Welcome Megan Fitzpatrick, New Administrative Coordinator

Megan was born in Hanover, and moved all around the country before starting a family with her partner, Greg Kimble. Together they live with their 6-year-old son, Emerson, and two small dogs.

Megan first came to St. James with her mother, Holly Musselman. Her faith journey took her down the path less traveled, and she attributes Pastor Mike as one of her biggest role models.

She loves learning, bullet journals, and creating art. In her free time she advocates online for mental health and addiction recovery, and she coaches women with a story on the art of public speaking. 

Parish Records

Deaths
July 2                      Kenneth Adams
July 16                    Howard Guise

Upcoming 50+ Wedding Anniversaries

August 5 – Marty  & Anne Young – 56 years
August 15 – Bill & Judy Leslie – 52 years
August 21 – Terry  & Jane  Fox – 57 years
August 25 – Kenneth & Gloria Unger – 59 years
August 26 – Martin & Catherine Crabill – 71 years

Ordination Anniversaries

August 19, 1962 The Rev. Frederick A. Foltz 60 years