The following projects have all been aided by grants from the Congregational Development Commission.
Food Pantry Outreach Project at St. Peter’s & St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church
Contact: The Rev. Maryalice Sullivan, Vicar (firstname.lastname@example.org)
CDC Grant award: $8,300
Goal: To make more use of church basement as the church expands its outreach offerings
As St. Peter’s & St. Andrew’s seeks to use their parish house as a Center of Hope, they continue to look forward to future community needs. Currently, they have the Food Pantry which serves about 60 families/week. They also served as a COVID testing and vaccination site and have a pop-up thrift store. Other outreach needs being addressed include:
- a job fair for the community
- working with Brown University through the Free program to provide much needed feminine products for women and school aged girls
- ESL and citizenship classes – the two largest requests from the community
The mold has been remediated from our basement and it does smell oh so much better. The grant we received from the Diocese covered all but four hundred dollars of the total cost. The next step is to get the gutters fixed to redirect the water away from the building. We will also have to have the parts of the basement wall repair where the water has been leaking in, probably for years, and we need a sump pump to make sure this does not happen in the future. When this work is done we can begin to think about what we want our basement to look like and how do we accomplish that. They were able to save the sub floor which should save some money as we move forward.
Festival of the Resurrection: Hope, Healing & Hallelujah. St. Paul’s Pawtucket.
Contact: Rev. Jo-ann Drake or Ted Platt, email@example.com, 401-728-4300
Goals: “The season of Easter, which lasts 50 days, is the time the Church gives continuous thanks for God’s unfailing love and mercy,” said The Rev. Greta Getlein, Vicar of St. Paul’s. “As part of our celebrations:
- we must consider how we share the gifts given us;
- how we engage with our communities;
- and how we participate in the important conversations of our day.
This festival is an opportunity for St. Paul’s to do all of the above in partnership with this city.”
The 2018 Festival of the Resurrection took place from Sunday, April 22, through Sunday, April 29, as an opportunity for Rhode Islanders to continue joyously celebrating Easter long after the traditional festive worship services on Easter Day. Each day of the festival featured a special event, starting with “Bach, Buxtehude and Beyond,” an organ recital at 3 p.m. on April 22. Events include and evening of dance and music with “Dynamite Rhythm”, a presentation by Creative Outreach About Addiction Support Together, a conversation “Art of Befriending Seniors”, a Tai Chi workshop on spiritual fitness followed by a Mass for Healing, and a solo dramatic performance of the Gospel of Mark. The festival concluded with “For God Has Done Marvelous Things,” an artistic tapestry of poetry, dance, readings, prayer, choir and organ around the great hymns of Easter.
Impact: From Rev Greta Getlein (July 2021): “I would say it was a short-term success in that it got lots of members of the parish involved welcoming strangers in.”
Icons and Song – Windows into Russian Culture and Prayer. All Saints’ Memorial Church, Providence
Contact: Rev. Julie Hanavan firstname.lastname@example.org
Amount funded by CDC: $1,300
Amount funded by All Saints’: $1,775
Goals: Expand upon an annual concert hosted by All Saints (sacred Russian Orthodox music) to include an exhibition of Russian Icons from the Museum of Russian Icons traveling collections.
Invite the public to spend an afternoon at All Saints’ to experience beautiful sacred music from Russia, meet a Russian a capella group, view Russian Orthodox and Ethiopian Christian icons dating to 1580, and learn about the creation, meaning, and roles of icons in personal/family prayer and liturgy.
Further the vision statement of All Saints’ as “a visible and known beacon that engages people in their spiritual journeys and nurtures their mind and souls.”
Description: More than 100 persons attended the event on September 14, 2019, many of whom had never been inside All Saints’. Ms. Garrity-Arquitt, from the Museum, was present throughout the exhibition period to answer individual questions; she also answered many thoughtful questions from the audience at the conclusion of her presentation. Her presentation was complemented by sacred Russian Orthodox music presented by LYRA, with accompanying commentary by its leader, Mr. Sergey Tupitsyn. The group, composed of four professional musicians from St. Petersburg, also sang entertaining Russian folk songs. Attendees enjoyed a delicious reception of savories and desserts prepared by the All Saints’ Arts Ministry.
The Icons and Song program was a unique combination of sacred art and music, and culture that appealed to a wide range of visitors. Many attendees had never been to All Saints’ before and commented on the beauty of the sacred space as well as the music and icons. The program did indeed engage spiritual journeys, and nurtured mind and soul.
Open Hands, Open Hearts. Trinity Church, Scituate
Contact: Jill Shurtleff, email@example.com
(currently not occurring due to COVID, but will resume when it is safe to do so.)
Goal(s): To develop an inviting, inclusive worship service for families with special abilities children, to share this ministry with other churches interested in starting a similar service, and assist those congregations in setting up similar services.
Open Hands, Open Hearts is a worship service for families with special needs in a judgment-free gathering place. The service includes music and movement, prayers, a lesson, and an opportunity for Eucharist and/or a blessing. Our Open Hands, Open Hearts worship space contains a quiet area for those who need a safe zone or a break. It also features comfortable alternative seating, including “wiggle seats,” bean bag chairs, and floor mats.
Pilgrim Course Bible Study Project. Church of the Epiphany, Rumford, RI
Contact: The Rev. Jennifer Zogg, Rector (firstname.lastname@example.org)
CDC Grant award: $2,000
Goal of Project: To deepen our spiritual formation as a congregation by engaging in an all-parish study on basic Christianity and discipleship called the Pilgrim course from Church Publishing, and to strengthen our spiritual foundation in order to engage better in outreach, stewardship, etc., and build new leaders in the parish for future ministries.
The congregation was gathered in one united study (Sunday mornings at 9:15am in small and large group formats) for inter-generational learning (youth ages 9-13+ were included) Next, we would like to provide a course for new members, those desiring adult baptism/confirmation/reception, and those who have been long-time members to deepen and renew their faith
The Blackstone Valley Deanery- Quiet Day. Christ Church, Lincoln R.I.
Contact: The Reverend Beth Sherman, email@example.com
Amount funded by CDC: $1000
The Quiet day in Advent provided 15 or so people (both lay and clergy) with a reflective and meditative experience during one of the most chaotic and busiest seasons of the church year, Advent. Participants found the quiet day healing and energizing, allowing them to slow down and “be present.” The day began at 8:30 am and end at about 2 pm. During the “Quiet day,” there was a good deal of scheduled and unscheduled time. The scheduled time began with three (3) periods of reflection led by the Reverend Beth Sherman. After the planned “reflection time, participants were allowed to journal during an unscheduled time. A good indication of success is the desire and hope held by participants that future “quiet days” would be supported by the diocese as a whole.