Saint Mark United Methodist Church
Loving • Accepting • Serving
In This Issue
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About The Remarks
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Make plans to join us this Fall for a Church-wide Retreat!
Seeking Balance: Learning to Live in the Flow of Grace
In today’s world, we often keep such busy and complex schedules, it can be challenging to slow down and rest, to be attentive to our souls, to one another, and to the Spirit that moves within and around us. How do we juggle all our real-life roles and responsibilities AND find/make time to pray and to serve others without becoming overwhelmed or burnt out? Is it even possible to find some sense of balance? Looking to Jesus’ life and ministry as a model, we will explore how we can live more fully in the flow of grace, rather than racing on life’s treadmill. Through Scripture and story, reflection and ritual, we will look at four dimensions of a balanced life and how these can be cultivated in our personal and our communal lives.
Facilitator: Kimberly Broerman, Spiritual Director, Deep Waters Center for Prayer and Exploration
Date: September 28-30, 2012, gather at 6 pm for dinner, conclude after worship on Sunday at 10:30.
Location: Collinswood Retreat Center, Lake Oconee, GA
There will be programming available for children and youth during the adult sessions. All are welcome!
Approximate Cost: $75/adult, $30/child, $180/family
Summer is winding down. It is great to have the bulk of the traveling for this season behind me. Mark and the kids are all home from Honduras and summer camp (Mark from Honduras and the kids from camp J). I’m home from Jurisdictional Conference, where we elected five great new bishops—one of whom, Bishop Bill McAlily, is our own Clyde Parks’ cousin! I feel much lighter since the weight of the United Methodist World has been lifted off my shoulders, but I also feel a sense of encouragement about the state of affairs in which we find ourselves as a denomination—and what we here at Saint Mark can and must do over the next four years to accelerate progress. First of all, I spoke with Giselle Lawn, and one of the things she said that she and the Reconciling United Methodists here in North Georgia plan to do RIGHT AWAY is begin to organize for the General Conference elections four years from now. Our progressive laity have never been as organized as our conservative laity so this was very welcome news. I can also testify that the progressive clergy have had similar conversations, especially around electing a much younger delegation next time around. The Western and North Eastern Jurisdictions of our church both issued support statements for LGBT persons and our RMN task force aims to introduce similar legislation here. But what has this to do with us, here at Saint Mark, you might ask?
Well for one thing, I believe we must make a special effort to extend our arms to as many disillusioned folks as we can. We must enlist them to swell the numbers here in the United Methodist Church until our presence can no longer be ignored. We must cherish our youth and young adults and bring them into the church so we can counter the belittling messages they get in society day in and day out. We must gather our allies into the struggle for full inclusion. But the most important thing, we must rejoice in the Lord and celebrate our salvation! We must come to worship and claim our rightful place in the household of God. We must never let anyone make us feel second class or less than acceptable. This house of God must rejoice every Sunday, at the top of its voice so that no one can doubt that we know we are loved by God. Every person out there who does not have this type of church home should! So our job for the next four years is to stand our ground—stand tall and stand proud. And when change comes it will come not only for us but for everyone who will enter these three red doors after us. I have never been so proud of a group of people as I am of you. You give me strength and you make me hopeful. The future of our denomination is bright, in large part, because the fabulous people refuse to leave. God bless you for all you are and do.
Yours as always, Beth
Capital Campaign Update
Backpack in the Park, This Saturday
Join us this Saturday, July 28, 4 to 7 pm, at Piedmont Park's Greystone Pavilion for summer’s version of the Toy Party, with a twist! This year's theme is “Retro Camp” - camp-themed activities, great prizes, entertainment, summer cocktails and snacks. Bring a new backpack filled with school-supplies (valued at $35 or more) for admission, or pre-purchase your donation online. For you, this is a party with a purpose. For the children served, that backpack represents confidence and self-esteem, the proper learning tools, a more level playing field, and the feeling that they are loved!
See a Movie with the ARC!
Join the Activities and Recreation Committee for another movie in Central Park at Atlantic Station. Bring a lawn chair, pack a picnic, and hang out with friends Saint Mark to watch The Notebook on August 2. Look for the blue Saint Mark tarps and bring your own drinks and snacks. For more details, contact Larry Lucas, 404-688-2847.
Join us for an authentic Italian dinner prepared by Beth LaRocca-Pitts on August 4, 6 pm, at the home of Alex Gallagher and Ben Boykin (with co-hosts Lily Berrios Miller and Walt Miller). Cost is $75/person (includes meal and wine). All proceeds will benefit our Capital Campaign. To RSVP, please call Alex, 404-355-2946.
Children’s Sunday School Teachers Needed
We need teachers for the Children’s Sunday school classes starting in the fall. Teachers rotate with their co-teachers, so you would not teach every Sunday. No experience is necessary (the curriculum will be provided). All that is required is to pass a background check, per our Safe Sanctuaries policy. Contact Kim Sorrells for more details.
Mark Your Calendars!
August is Camp Meeting Month at Saint Mark, and August 26 is
The Chancel Choir’s annual Broadway concert is scheduled for Saturday, August 25, 7:30pm and again on Homecoming Sunday, August 26, 3pm. This year’s theme is Welcome Home.
Sewing Reconciling Stoles
Giselle Lawn, who is on the board of Reconciling Ministries Network, has suggested that Saint Mark take on a great project to make 300 stoles for Reconciling Ministry Network friends and allies to wear at the 2013 North Georgia Annual Conference of the United Methodist Church. We are seeking volunteers to sew the short stoles, using a simple pattern that we can provide. The more volunteers, the lighter the work! And, friends in other churches and states are welcome to help. For more information, contact Giselle Lawn or Rev. Mandy Flemming.
Calendar of Events
9:00 am - 154; 11:15 am - 235; Total - 389
Rev. Dr. Beth LaRocca-Pitts preaching, We Are Rooted In Love
Year-to-Date Actual Operating Income/Expense Report:
Through July 17, 2012:
Additional expenses are due, have not been paid, and are not included in the Expenses above: $ 32,084
Including this expense, the actual Deficit is $ 101,262
Capital Campaign V Pledges
Before July 1: $ 340,428
Warren Williams gave a gift to the Capital Campaign in honor of his mother Lee.
Harvey Oaxaca has been named principal of Lake Forest Elementary School. Rumor has it that Harvey is now the youngest person ever to become school principal in the Fulton County Public Schools system. Great job, Harvey!
A Letter from Our Member in Brazil
One of our newer members is Gerusa Sanil Santos who lives in a poor area of Brazil. Gerusa was Beth's roommate in seminary and became the first indigenous Brazilian woman to be ordained as a Methodist minister. There is no Methodist Church in her area so Gerusa prays during our worship service on Sunday and then listens to the worship once it is available online the next day. Recently, Beth told of Gerusa's journey during a sermon. Gerusa then sent this letter:
|©2012 Saint Mark United Methodist Church | 781 Peachtree Street NE | Atlanta, Georgia 30308 | (404) 873-2636|