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THE CHOIR OF ST. PATRICK’S

The Choir of St. Patrick’s is an all volunteer group of dedicated singers who meet every Thursday afternoon from 3:30 – 4:30 pm in the church to prepare anthems for 10am Sunday morning worship (they arrive at 9 am on Sunday mornings to warm up and review music). In addition, the choir provides music for special liturgies such as Ash Wednesday, Holy Week (Maundy Thursday, Easter Vigil, and Easter Day), Christmas Eve 8 pm service, and occasional Sunday Night Unplugged services. It is not a requirement that the singer be able to read music, though a good ear for music and the ability to match pitch is important. Some members have had previous choral experience, while others are novices. The prime common denominator among choir members is their desire to serve the church to the Glory of God by their careful preparation and loving offerings of music in a liturgical setting. The choir has both part time and full time members and welcomes singers to join them to be a part of a valuable spiritual ministry in our church.

 THE PRAYER QUILT MINISTRY

St. Patrick’s is a parish centered in prayer, spirituality, outreach, instruction, and worship. An important aspect of our common prayer life is through our prayer quilt outreach ministry. The Prayer Quilt Ministers are a group of women who meet every Thursday afternoon at 2 pm to sew beautiful prayer quilts for those who have requested them. The recipients usually are dealing with issues such as critical illness, imminent surgery, loss of a loved one, or a personal crisis.

Each quilt is unique in its design, utilizing colorful materials donated or purchased by the group and kept on hand for this purpose. One side of the quilt features a large cross as well as the recipient’s personalized name plate sewn into the corner. The other side is a colorful quilted pattern.

Most importantly, every quilt is prayed over by the person creating it. Strings are sewn into the finished quilt and it is placed on the altar to be blessed by the entire congregation during the Sunday morning service. The prayer quilt is removed from the altar during the offertory and processed into the parish hall where, following the service, individuals say a prayer for the recipient and tie a knot into one of the attached strings to signify their individual prayer.

St. Patrick’s prayer quilts are free of charge and may be requested by anyone. However, receipt of the quilt must be approved in advance by the recipient. Any shipping costs must be covered by the person requesting the quilt. These quilts have brought blessings to people all over the world and are a treasured gift by those who receive them, providing a source of comfort and peace.

EPISCOPAL CHURCH WOMEN (ECW)

The Episcopal Church Women meet on the second Monday of every month at 1 pm in the church library. Every woman in the parish is invited to attend and is already considered a member. The women are very active in providing funding for the Prayer Quilt Ministry, parish and community outreach (including funding for Loaves and Fishes and Food Box ministries), as well as other specially requested funding for the church. Fund raising events include:

-The Christmas Tea on the first Sunday in Advent, an event that is highly anticipated throughout the community. Tickets are $10 each and must be bought in advance.

– The Annual Quilt Raffle – a handmade queen-sized quilt and two matching pillows made by the women of the church is raffled to the community. The lucky winner is drawn at the Christmas Tea. Tickets are sold for $5 each.

– The Shamrock Festival, a major fund-raising event sponsored by the women and men of St. Patrick’s with proceeds given to community outreach.

– Annual Bake Sale at City Market

The Women also sponsor an annual Clothing Giveaway during October, providing gently used clothing, coats, shoes, bedding, household items, and toys for the children, to those who need them. Literally tons of clothing are given away every year.

 THE EPISCOPAL MEN’S GROUP

The Men of St. Patrick’s is open to all male parishioners, holding monthly breakfast meetings on the second Saturday morning of the month from 8:00 – 9:30.  They jokingly say that their mission is to do whatever the women tell them to do, but in truth they provide an invaluable service to St. Patrick’s and Pagosa Springs. The men do a lot of the “heavy lifting” in the parish, including (but certainly not limited to):

– volunteering to clean the church every Friday morning in preparation for weekend services.

– help to keep our outdoor labyrinth free of weeds and natural impediments that grow up into the path.

– help take care of the church facilities and grounds

– provide funding through an annual raffle for parish and community outreach such as Loaves and Fishes, Food Boxes, Habitat for Humanity, and others.

– cook and serve a sit down lasagna dinner under the tent at the annual Shamrock Festival

– provide the annual Shrove Tuesday pancake dinner for the parish

The Men of St. Patrick’s provide assistance to parishioners with special needs, such as hauling wood for heating, or one-time manual labor projects. They enjoy special male fellowship as well through their annual Steak and Stine dinner that includes a special guest speaker.

FLY TYING GROUP

If you enjoy fly fishing, you will find that fly-tying is a fun and creative side activity. Every Wednesday afternoon beginning at 4 pm, a group meets in the church library to tie flies. If you are a novice, there are plenty of friends there to show you their techniques. If you are a pro, come and enjoy the fellowship and share your tips and patterns. Bring your own equipment and join the fun!

THE ALTAR GUILD

St. Patrick’s Altar Guild is made up of women and men who love to serve God behind the scenes, preparing the altar for services of Holy Eucharist, ordering and placing flowers in the sanctuary, decorating the church for festival services, making sure linens are cleaned and ironed, silver is polished, sacramental bread is prepared and wine is ordered and on hand, and candles are in ready supply. There are many details the Altar Guild attends to that are essential to the beautiful liturgies of worship in the church. The Altar Guild is open to all adult parishioners who are willing to be trained and are available to assist.

USHERS, GREETERS, LAY READERS

The ushers, greeters, and lay readers of the church play a very important part in our Sunday morning worship. The ushers hand out service leaflets, provide “traffic” direction to those receiving communion, and distribute the “beautiful and stylish” St. Patrick’s coffee mugs to visitors. Our greeters serve to welcome our guests as they enter the church and provide any information about our parish or answer questions. Greeters also introduce guests to other parishioners, making them feel welcomed and at ease as they worship with us. Lay readers read the lessons from the lectionary during the service. These groups welcome new members and provide training to any who wish to minister in this way.

LAY EUCHARISTIC MINISTERS

Eucharistic ministers provide the rector with special assistance during services of Holy Eucharist. They are responsible for assisting at the altar, distributing the chalice during communion, reading the Prayers of the People during the service, serve as crucifer (cross bearer) during the processions, and hold the Gospel book during the reading of the Gospel. Eucharistic ministers are trained for this ministry by Fr. Doug Neel or by Brother Ron Jyleen. Anyone wishing to serve in this capacity should contact the church office and speak to Fr. Doug Neel.

THE VESTRY

The vestry serves as the governing body for the church. Vestry members are elected by the parish for a three-year term at the Annual Parish Meeting, attended by the entire parish. Members of the vestry must be members in good standing of the parish and willing to attend monthly meetings and assist with various functions of the church. The Junior and Senior Wardens chair the vestry and are appointed by the rector.

OFFICE VOLUNTEERS

St. Patrick’s utilizes the skills of its parishioners to answer phones, print and fold Sunday bulletins, greet visitors to the office, make phone calls, collect mail, and other front office jobs. It is the church’s desire to have the office open daily and volunteers make that possible. If you are interested in volunteering, call (970) 731-5801 to find out how you can help

ANNE’S CHAPTER OF DAUGHTERS OF THE KING

Daughters of the King is a national Episcopal Holy Order for women who feel called to offer daily prayer for the church, its ministers and ministry, and for those who have requested special prayers. The Daughters of the King meet regularly to enrich their prayer life and to discuss ways to help others in their spiritual journey. There is a certain amount of personal training required in order to become a Daughter, but all women are welcome to come to meetings or to request the training.

BIBLE STUDY GROUPS

There are currently two Bible study groups that meet at St. Patrick’s. One meets every Tuesday from noon to 1 pm to discuss the weekly lectionary readings to be read the following Sunday. This Bible study group usually enjoys a hot lunch together as they discuss the readings.

The Women’s Bible Study group meets in the church library on Mondays at 2 pm, utilizing a curriculum of interest to all. The current curriculum, Women of the Bible, is very popular and has created some very animated discussion. Contact the church office to find out when the group will resume sessions.

SPIRITUAL JOURNEYING

The Celtic Community is made up of parishioners and members of the larger Pagosa community who are interested in studying and being enriched by the practices of Celtic spirituality. They meet on Monday evenings from 6 – 8 pm in the church library.

Theology on Tap is an informal group who meets Wednesdays at 5:30 at Riff Raff Brewery (downtown Hwy 160) to discuss a wide variety of theological topics. All are welcome.

SUMMER ACTIVITIES

Getting together just for fun builds community within the parish. St. Patrick’s has hiking and golfing groups that meet during the summer months.

PATRICK’S LABYRINTH

St. Patrick’s has a beautiful outdoor labyrinth located on the property behind the church parking lot. The labyrinth is created from rocks from the land, encircling a tall pine tree. Anyone is invited to come and walk the labyrinth or sit in the adjoining prayer garden provided for personal meditation. It is open daily to the public.

SUNDAY NIGHT UNPLUGGED

St. Patrick’s is dedicated to feeding and nurturing the spiritual nature of the parish and the greater community. Sunday Night Unplugged is a meditation service punctuated by contemplative music, offered on the second Sunday evening of every month beginning at 5 pm. The music is provided by talented local musicians with biblical and secular readings for meditative consideration, beautiful altar decorations for visual edification, corporate prayer, prayer stations with candles, all enveloped by periods of silence. The beautiful transept windows offering views of the San Juan Mountains and wooded areas surrounding the church provide additional visual beauty. The service is free and open to the public.

HEALING SERVICE

A service of healing (holy unction) and Holy Eucharist is held every Tuesday morning at 11:30 am in the church. The service offers anointing for those who are facing illness or have friends or family who are facing illness or personal crises. Holy Communion is open to the public.

SUNDAY SCHOOL AND WORSHIP

Adult Sunday School class is offered at 9 am every Sunday morning and children’s Sunday School is offered during the first part of the 10 am worship service. (Children return to church for communion.)

A sung Eucharist is offered weekly on Sundays at 10 am with choir anthems, hymns, and sermon. All are welcome to partake of communion.

Worshipers are invited to join in the parish hall following the service for coffee and goodies.

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