E-Newsletter for Sunday, March 24, 2019

Movie Group Tonight, The Annunciation, Taizé Evening Prayer and more in the E-Newsletter for March 24, 2019  https://mailchi.mp/82e25ac3e43f/ey7eu7o5mr-1457525

From the Rector
The Rev. Dr. Jared C. Cramer, SCP

Dear *|FNAME|*,

I hate to jinx it, but I think that spring is beginning to… well… spring. Finally.

The sun is shining, the grass seems to be just beginning to come back to life, and seeds and bulbs are all beginning to awaken from their long winter sleep. Pretty soon, we'll be seeing the new life of spring in the St. Francis Prayer & Meditation Garden.

If you don't know the story behind this garden, it was a legacy gift from Dick Swain, a long-time parishioner who had a deep love for this congregation and for the natural beauty of God's creation. Dick wanted to make a legacy gift to the parish—but he also wanted to see the fruits of it while he was still alive.

He spent more than a year working with Grand Haven Garden House (GHGH) in designing the St. Francis Garden. Once it got close to conceptualization, he then entered into conversations with the Property Commission and the Vestry. Finally, when all was designed and settled, the amazing staff at GHGH put shovels in the dirt and set to work transforming what had been a vacant grassy lot to the beautiful garden we all love today. The finishing touch on the garden was a brick pathway that runs through it, an anonymous gift from a family at this parish who found themselves inspired by Dick's generosity.

One of Dick's goals with the pathway is that it would help raise money for a new Landscaping Endowment, so that the landscaping and grounds of our parish could always be professionally maintained no matter the budget struggles that came or went. In the now nearly seven years since this garden was installed, that endowment has grown through the purchase of bricks in the pathway and other outright gifts. It is now valued at nearly $40K, producing an annual distribution that is enough to cover roughly a quarter of our landscaping costs. 

With the garden coming to life again, it's a great opportunity to consider joining with Dick's legacy in supporting the beautiful campus we have as a congregation. You can click here to download the brochure for purchasing a brick which you can have inscribed in memory or in honor of someone. Small bricks are $100 and large bricks are $500. You can also click here to simply make a gift of any amount to the Landscaping Endowment.

I hope you'll have a chance in the days and weeks ahead to walk through this lovely space. Remember people like Dick, now passed into the nearer presence of God, and others like him who have sought to cultivate this peaceful place of rest and refreshment at the top of the hill in Grand Haven. 

I still miss him on a regular basis. And I'm grateful for the example he gave me of what it means to give of yourself to a community and a place.  

Through Grace,

PS~ Don't forget this Sunday is the last day to be a part of our children's underwear and socks drive to help kids who visit a clothing pantry in Muskegon. You can place them in the designated bin in the coat room. Or, if you would prefer, you can also make an online gift to my discretionary account. All gifts made to that account between now and Sunday, March 24, will be used to purchase children's underwear and socks for this drive. 

Read more in the E-Newsletter for Sunday, March 17, 2019   https://mailchi.mp/82e25ac3e43f/ey7eu7o5mr-1457525

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