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Dec. 1, 2013 – St. Matthew’s United Church eBulletin

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

•  St. Matthew’s Calendar
•  Unsettling Goods Campaign today
•  The Return of the Anonymous Couple
•   Congregational Meeting Update
•  New faces for committees
•  Emergency appeal for aid to the Philippines
•  Thanks to ...
•  Welcome to ...
•  Break a Leg to ...
•  Looking ahead to Advent(get those knitting needles going)
•  Out of the Cold Shelter – Volunteering
•  Advent and Christmas services
•  The Lunch Bunch Holiday Song
•  Meeting schedule for 2013–14
•  In the Community – Concerts, lectures, conferences and more

St. Matthew’s Calendar
Wed. Dec. 4, 11 am – Bible study in the parlour
Luke 1:36–55 – Mary, the Mother of Jesus
Fri. Dec. 6, 11:30 am – Service of Remembrance and Action Against Violence Against Women,
in the sanctuary
Sun. Dec. 8 – Pastoral Care Team meeting in the parlour, after church
Fri. Dec. 13 – Lunch Bunch Holiday Song, 12:30–1:15 pm, in the sanctuary

Unsettling Goods campaign today
Come join United Church members and supporters today (Dec. 3) from 11:30 am to 12:30 pm as we witness to the public our commitment to the United Church’s “Unsettling Goods” campaign to support an end to the Israeli occupation of Palestinian territories and for peace with justice for Palestine and Israel. In Halifax, come to the public triangle in front of St. Andrew’s (Corner Robie, Spring Garden and Coburg) to stand, pray and sing for a just peace. For information, Linda Scherzinger, 423,0339, or lindakseven<at-symbol>gmail.com.

Service of Remembrance and Action Against Violence Against Women
This brief candlelighting service is our annual observance of the murder of 14 female engineering students at École Polytechnique in Montreal in 1989. Join us Fri. Dec. 6 at 11:30 am in the sanctuary.

The Return of the Anonymous Couple
The Anonymous Couple are challenging the congregation to increase givings again this year. They will match donations that exceed total Local Givings from 2012, up to a total of $10,000, if contributed by the end of 2013. This gracious gesture is an opportunity not to be missed, and has the potential to raise $20,000 in new donations. The Stewards hope you will respond positively to this appeal.

Congregational Meeting Update
At Sunday’s meeting of the congregation Rev. Betsy Hogan provided an update on the proposal to redevelop the hall. There have been some design modifications for community/cultural space and to accommodate our partner, Commissionaires Nova Scotia, who plan to stay on Hollis Street in the redeveloped space. Changes will be reviewed by the Joint Working Committee in December (St. Matthew’s is represented by Tim Matthews, Ken Moors, Ben Black, and Betsy).

The congregation accepted, in principle, a conceptual design that keeps our sanctuary intact. Behind the sanctuary a 19-storey housing tower includes six affordable housing units, offices, below-ground parking, a kitchen, and suitable space for the Out of the Cold Shelter and Circus Circle. The north lawn remains an amphitheatre with enhanced stepped levels of seating and landscaping. The south lawn will include a public walkway from Barrington to Hollis, Sunday-school level meeting rooms, and direct access to the church hall and offices at the Barrington Street level, plus enhanced landscaping.

A preliminary application will now be submitted to HRM Planning department for review and comment. After feedback from the planners, a final application will be prepared and submitted next year. This process will involve public hearings and consideration by HRM Council. If final approval is successfully obtained, any subsequent legal agreement with a developer will be brought to the congregation and Halifax Presbytery for consideration. The committee will continue to update the congregation as we proceed.

New faces for committees
There will be a few new faces and others reaffirmed as a result of the Nominating Committee’s work: Laura Stiles-Clarke (Ministry & Personnel); George Seto, Cheryl Fraser, Sandi Chase-Caron and Kathy Woods/Stephen Toohey (Kirk Session); Cupido Daniels (Worship & Music); Greg Bent (new chair, Board of Stewards); Ken Moors (property committee, Board of Stewards); Shannon Black, Accounting Consultant to the incoming chair of the Board of Stewards; Leonard Preyra (Liaison with Out of the Cold Shelter); Dan Campbell and Laura Stiles-Clarke (Nominating Committee).

Emergency appeal for aid to the Philippines
Thanks to United Church partners already at work in the Philippines, we have the capacity to direct aid funds quickly to respond where the need is greatest. All donations received by Dec. 8 will be matched by the Canadian government. To make a donation online visit https://www.gifttool.com/donations/Donate?ID=1955&AID=3036

Alternatively, send a cheque to: The United Church of Canada, Philanthropy Unit – Emergency Response, 3250 Bloor Street West, Suite 300, Toronto, ON  M8X 2Y4. Note “Emergency Response—Typhoon Haiyan Relief” on the face of your cheque.

Thanks to ...
Ÿ John and Brenda Wallace for hosting the pre-meeting Potluck Lunch last Sunday, and for everyone who assisted with the food preparation (it was yummy!) and clean-up.
Ÿ All who provided nativity sets for the Come to the Stable display, and to the Worship and Music Committee for decorating and arranging coffee in the Sanctuary after Sunday’s service.

Welcome to ...
Ÿ Stella Grace Pearce, daughter of Lorne and Laura Pearce, who was baptized on Sunday. Her grandmother, Rev. Karen Pearce, participated in the laying on of hands while grandfather John Pearce observed from the choir.

Break a Leg to ...
Ÿ Calista Caron of our Sunday School as she begins this season’s performances of The Nutcracker with Symphony Nova Scotia

Looking ahead to Advent
Advent Tree:  Hats, mitts and scarves – We’ll be decorating an Advent Tree with warm hats, mitts, and scarves, which will be given as gifts to guests of the Out of the Cold Shelter and Sunday Breakfast. If you are knit or crochet and looking for a project, consider these!

Poinsettias – Interested in placing a poinsettia in the church during Advent, perhaps in memory of a loved one? Poinsettias will decorate the church until they are taken to shut-ins of the congregation as Christmas gifts. Place your orders with Shirley McInnes. Each plant is $15.

Hanging stockings on the mantel – All are invited to bring warm socks to ‘hang on the mantel’ that will be at the door of the church. These socks are brought to Phoenix Shelter for Youth to keep residents’ feet warm during the winter.

White Gifts – During Advent there is a small tree at the door of the church bearing tags that identify a gift (clothing, toiletries, etc.) to be given to a guest at the Sunday Christmas Breakfast. Gifts can be brought to church on Sun. Dec. 15 (White Gift Sunday).

Cookies for the Special Christmas Breakfast – The Breakfast Program is looking for donations of homemade cookies to give to guests at the special Christmas breakfast. The cookies can be dropped off at the church hall on Sat. Dec. 21 from 1–3 pm during the set-up for the next morning’s festivities. Frozen cookies can be given to Michelle Jensen at church on Sun. Dec. 15, or pick-up can be arranged if needed. Contact Michelle, 420-9769, if you can donate cookies.

Advent and Christmas Services
Advent II  Dec. 8
Advent III Dec. 15
Sunday School service: Peace on Earth
AcabellA Handbell concert, Keshan Goodman Library, 2:30 pm
Advent IV Dec. 22
Choral Christmas Service with Choir and AcabellA Handbell Choir
Christmas Eve Dec. 24
Bethlehem@Barrington live nativity service, 6:30 pm  
Christmas candlelight communion, 10 pm     
Christmas Dec. 25
Christmas carol service, 10:30 am

The Lunch Bunch – Holiday Song Dec. 13
The Lunch Bunch will present Holiday Song on Fri. Dec. 13 from 12:30–1:15 pm in the sanctuary. Enjoy some holiday music with the lunchtime choir conducted by Wayne Rogers. Admission is free but donations to the food bank are welcome. Hot cider will be available.

Out of the Cold Shelter – Volunteering
Out of the Cold (OTCS) Shelter is looking for dedicated volunteers to help run the emergency shelter this winter. Each night last winter OTCS provided a safe and welcoming environment for up to 15 people, including men, women, youth and transgendered person. For many who have trouble accessing other shelters for whatever reason, the OTC Shelter is the last resort. It was staffed by volunteers with the support of a team of several agencies and shelters. This shelter is a community-based response to homelessness and the current housing crisis in our city. Dedicated volunteers are needed to help staff the shelter from Nov. 24 to Apr. 30. Evening, overnight and morning shifts are available, and all volunteer staff will receive training. For information: Kelly Adamson, Administrator; halifaxwintershelter@gmail.com or call

Meeting schedule for 2013–14
All meetings are held after the Sunday service
Congregational meetings – June 8
Session/Stewards/Board – Feb. 23, June 1
Executive of Official Board – Jan. 26, Mar. 30, Apr. 27

In the Community
Solstice  with soprano Nicole Jordan & Halifax Camerata Singers – Fri. Dec. 6 at 7:30 pm at St. Matthew’s. A concert of Christmas music, with some of the proceeds supporting Music at St. Matthew’s. Tickets $20 adult, $12 student/underwaged at the door. Call Jill Rafuse, 492-4523.

Advent and Christmas Music with Nova Voce, Halifax Boys’ Honour Choir and Stadacona Brass Quintet – Fri. Dec. 6 at 7:30 pm (doors open 6:15 pm), St. Benedict Church, Radcliffe Drive. Tickets $15 adult, $12 senior/student; email tickets@novavoce.com or see www.novavoce.com

EnChor East presents Noel, Noel– Sat. Dec. 7 at St. Benedict Church, Halifax, and Sun. Dec. 8 at St. John’s Church, Fall River. Pergolesi’s Magnificat and Messiah excerpts. Choir is conducted by Wayne Rogers, accompanied by Dean Bradshaw. Tickets $20 adult, $15 seniors at the door; family rate available. Call 445-1444.

25th Anniversary Festival of Carols: The Jubilate Singers – Sun. Dec. 8 at 7 pm (doors open 6:30 pm), St. Mark’s Anglican Church, Russell at Gottingen. Conductor Terry Hurrell; accompanists Louise Grinstead and Scott Taylor. Guests Ardyth and Jennifer with Pam Mason; Corey Adams; Elizabeth Beeler; Holly Arsenault; and Symphony Brass. Tickets $15 adult, $12 senior/student. Tickets from church office 454-0207.

AcabellA  Christmas – Sun. Dec. 15 at 2:30 pm, Keshan Goodman Library. AcabellA is St. Matthew’s excellent handbell choir, presenting its annual public concert for families.

Carols by Candlelight – Sun. Dec. 22, 7 pm at First Baptist Church, Halifax. The annual service of lessons and carols with the choirs of First Baptist Church (Lynette Wahlstrom, director of music) and special guests Kimberley North, flute; Katherine Fitch Loza, harp; Shawn Whynot, organ.

Church office: stmatts@ns.sympatico.ca, 423-9209
Pastoral care: Rev. Betsy Hogan, 423-9209
Sunday Free Breakfast: 8:30–9:30 am
Sunday Worship: 10:30 am
Minister of Music: Wayne Rogers, 429-1680
Choir rehearsals on Thursday: AcabellA Handbell Choir 6:15 pm, Choir 7:30 pm
Lunch Bunch Community Choir: Fridays at 12 noon September–June
On the web: www.stmatts.ns.ca