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St. Matthew’s United Church eBulletin Jan. 31, 2012

§ St. Matthew’s Calendar
§ Furnace update
§ Contacting Rev. Sagar
§ Offering envelopes ready
§ Photos wanted
§ Taizé worship
§ Run in the Bluenose Marathon, raise $$ for M&S
§ United Church Observer subscriptions
§ Farewell to John Hipson
§ In the broader church community

St. Matthew’s Calendar
Feb. 21 – Shrove Tuesday Potluck Church / Pancake Supper, 5:30 pm
Feb. 22 – Ash Wednesday service, 7:30 pm
Feb. 26 – Kirk Session after church, followed by quarterly meeting of the Official Board
May 27 – Kirk Session and Official Board
June 10 – Congregational Budget Meeting

Furnace Update
From Ken Moors, Chair, Board of Stewards
Peggy Lee might have thought there wasn’t all that much to a fire, but she never had to replace a furnace.
We’ve been trying to replace the furnace at St. Matthew’s for some time. The church has been operating on one of its two furnaces for about one year. In December we received approval to go ahead, and had obtained quotes and a preferred supplier when the supplier said, “Oil or gas?” With St. Matthew’s spending about $30,000 a year on furnace oil and natural gas savings estimated at roughly 30% per year, gas could be attractive. It also fits into the church’s vision of being environmentally sustainable (it draws on alternate energy sources) and financially sustainable (a 30% reduction in energy costs) and no rooftop chimney repair costs.
So is natural gas available? Both our neighbours, the Commissionaires and the Lieutenant-Governor, have natural gas available but we don’t – yet. It is so close we can see the hook-up from our back steps. We don’t have gas yet, but this is what we can do. We can install a furnace that uses propane until such time as we are hooked up on the natural gas line, which could be very soon, and at that point we could switch to natural gas.
And folks thought the United Church was flexible only around theological issues! A final note: our neighbours the Commissionaires are being extremely supportive in this, so a tip of the parson’s hat to them. Thanks to everyone for their cold patience on this matter, especially Wayne Rogers who worries constantly about the pipe organ.

Contacting Rev. Sagar
Rev. Betsy Hogan is on leave until Feb. 15, when she will take up her call as Minister of Word, Sacrament and Pastoral Care at St. Matthew’s.
Rev. Margaret Sagar is our Sunday supply minister until Betsy returns. For pastoral needs, contact Margaret by telephone, 852-4628 or email, quarterdeck@ns.sympatico.ca. You can also contact the church office, 423-9209 or stmatts@ns.sympatico.ca

Offering envelopes ready
Named envelope boxes for 2012 are ready for pick-up by the entrance to the Sanctuary. Please take your own and a friend’s to save postage.

Photos wanted
Barbara Bickle is looking for pictures of Bethlehem@Barrington 2011. Please send your pictures via email, bbickle@ns.sympatico.ca

Taizé worship
Experience a different style of worship through meditative singing and silent reflection. St. John’s United holds its next Taizé service Sunday, Feb. 5 at 7 pm at the Maritime Conservatory, Chebucto Road.

Run in the Bluenose Marathon, raise $$ for M&S
The Maritime Conference Stewardship Committee is organizing Runners United for Change, which encourages congregations to run in the Halifax Bluenose half marathon (21.1 kms) on May 20, 2012, to raise money for the Mission and Service Fund. (If 21 kms seems too much, you can always try the 10 kms instead.)
The committee is offering individual training programs for anyone interested. Marg Machum has signed up and is looking for company: “It would be great to have a good representation from St Matthew’s and I would appreciate the company and encouragement from anyone who would like to join me. I am starting at the bottom and am currently working my way from walking to a combination of running and walking. Many of you are much more advanced with your running endurance but there are others who would need to start at the bottom like me.”
If you are interested in becoming part of this program and thereby promote good stewardship of the body God gave you, please contact Marg by e-mail, marg.machum@bellaliant.net or call 477-9914. General information: Keltie van Binsbergen, sjminister@eastlink.ca or call (902) 868-1990.

United Church Observer subscriptions
The United Church Observer magazine keeps members and friends of the United Church of Canada aware of regional, national and global activities. It also tackles interesting, provocative and sometimes controversial issues that challenge our thinking. It is published 11 times a year and delivered to your home or office. It consistently wins awards for the quality of the writing, layout, and photography.
Those who signed up with the church office for the Observer last year and have not been receiving them, please fill out the form below and include a cheque for $10 (last year’s fee will be applied to this year’s subscription). Anyone who would like to start receiving the Observer, please fill out the form and include a $25 cheque.
Please get your form and payment to the church office. You can use the collection plate on Sunday, or the church office mail slot during the week. Questions? Call Dora McGrath, 423-9209.
United Church Observer 2012 Please PRINT
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Your name _________________________________
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Enclose $10 if you were a subscriber last year and have not been receiving the Observer.
Enclose $25 if this is a new subscription.
Make cheques payable to St. Matthew’s United Church marked “Observer”

Farewell to “Big John” Hipson
A memorial service was held on Jan. 29 to say goodbye to John Alfred Hipson, a pillar of St. Matthew’s Breakfast Program. John was born in the US, where many who loved him still reside: fiancée Roxanne, sister Alberta, brother Edward, sister-in-law Maryalice, and cousins John and Joseph. John served in Vietnam; he was a lieutenant in the army and served one year of combat duty, followed by a tour as a chef. He earned several academic degrees, including a BA and MBA. He had lived in Canada for many years and for a time worked as a chef at the Delta hotel. He used to cook breakfast on weekdays at Brunswick Street Mission, and for the past decade or so he has cooked Sunday breakfast at St. Matthew’s.

Rev. Margaret Sagar officiated at the memorial service, assisted by John Wallace (words of remembrance); John’s friend Danny Bastarache (who read W.H. Auden’s “Funeral Blues”); MLA Leonard Preyra (Scripture reading); and Dr. Dora Stinson (piano).

John left many friends in Halifax, and he will be missed at St. Matthew’s. Memorial donations to the Breakfast Program should be marked "In Memory of John Hipson"; cheques can be made out to St. Matthew's.

In the broader church community
Evangelism for Non-Evangelicals – This is an online continuing education opportunity from the Atlantic School of Theology. The registration deadline is Jan. 31. Find details at <www.astheology.ns.ca/UpcomingEvents.html>

Ecumenical Worship Service in honour of AST’s 40th Anniversary – Friday, Feb. 10 at 7:30 pm at Cathedral Church of All Saints, 1330 Martello Street/Tower Road. Choral music by The King’s College Chapel Choir; the AST story will be narrated by Adrian Hoffman.

Church office: stmatts@ns.sympatico.ca , 423-9209
Pastoral care: Rev. Betsy Hogan, 423-9209
Sunday Breakfast: 8:30–9:30 am, Worship: 10:30 am
Choir rehearsals: Thursdays, Handbell Choir at 6:15 pm and Senior Choir at 7:30 pm
Lunch Bunch Community Choir: Fridays at 12 noon

Enjoy St. Matthew’s United Church weekly eBulletin. Contact the office to add your email or to unsubscribe: stmatts@ns.sympatico.ca or 423-9209