"Tell us therefore, What thinkest thou? Is it lawful to give tribute unto Caesar, or not?"
St. Matthew 22:17
Fr. Yossi's sermon focused on the Gospel Lesson from St. Matthew 22. The Pharisees (noted for strict observance of rites and the written law) and the Herodians (supported the dynasty of Herod and the rule of Rome) joined together so they "might entangle" Jesus. They ask Jesus if it is lawful to give tribute to Caesar? Fr. Yossi reviewed Jesus's answer, how He knew their plans, and how he turned the tables on them. Jesus silenced them and they left without giving a reply.
Please find the complete service including Holy Communion and the wonderful sermon at the following link:
Thank you Fr. Yossi for the beautiful Holy Communion service! Thank you Br. Scott for leading the Morning Prayer Service!
After services, Fr. Yossi and Br. Scott led our annual congregational meeting.
-Fr. Yossi opened our meeting with a prayer and a call to order.
-Sue presented the minutes from last year's meeting which were approved as presented.
-Daryl gave the treasurer's report. He reviewed the finances to date for 2023 and presented a proposed budget for 2024. Daryl projects we will end Dec. 2023 with a small surplus but is currently projecting a deficit towards the end of 2024. This is not the first time we have approved a deficit budget but with God's grace, we have always found a way forward. Please keep St. Peter's in your prayers as we move into 2024.
-Fr. Yossi and Br. Scott gave a combined Vicar's and Senior Warden's report. The biggest news - our new Vicar, Fr. Yossi! Fr. Yossi started with us on August 1. To date he has made several pastoral care visits to members of St. Peters, performed one house blessing, performed one baptism and is currently teaching confirmation classes in addition to weekly Holy Communion services. Br. Scott reported on the first part of the year which included two baptisms, one funeral (we miss you Earl), Morning Prayer services, and working with several supply priests for Holy Communion services. We especially want to thank Fr. Dennis for all his trips over the mountains from North Carolina to be with us at St. Peters!
-I gave the Jr. Warden report. This year we installed two new heat pumps, new ceiling tiles and lighting in the basement, and repainted most of the basement floors. Outside we cut back the bamboo along the back property line, replaced the gutters on the main building, and held a congregational yard & maintenance day. Future plans include repair and improvements behind the altar, window replacement (upstairs & downstairs), a real floor in the basement, handicap access to the basement, and repair/replace the backdoor area with handicap access.
-Teresa and I were selected to be delegates to the Diocesan Synod next year in North Carolina. Br. Scott is completing his three year term on the Mission Committee (the last two as Senior Warden). We elected Teresa to fill his seat on the Mission Committee for a three year term. I will be serving as Senior Warden starting in January. We gave Br. Scott a bottle of scotch as a Sr. Warden retirement gift!
After the meeting we enjoyed an amazing potluck lunch! The table was over flowing - an early Thanksgiving Feast! Everything from pot roast, rice, beans with homemade chow chow, collard greens with bacon & vinegar, two types of cornbread, macaroni & cheese, sweet potato casserole, pecan pie cobbler, two types of sweet breads, ice cream, etc. Sadly, I forgot to take pictures. Thank you to everyone for bringing such delicious food. A wonderful lunch with wonderful people!
Next Sunday, November 19, Fr. Yossi will continue with confirmation classes in preparation for Bishop Jones' visit in mid December. While the classes are specifically designed for the people to be confirmed, all are welcome to attend. The classes start at 10 am - a pot of coffee will be on!
Sue continues to lead our weekly online prayer group on Discord every Thursday at 2 pm. Thank you so much Sue for taking the time each week to lead our prayers! If you have a special prayer request but cannot join us, please send your request to Sue. Please contact me if you would like to join us on Discord.
Our next Women's Bible Study is on Wed. November 15 @ 11 am at the church. We are using "The First 24" for our study guide. This is an in depth study of Mark 1:21-45 - the first 24 hours of Jesus' public ministry. The guide is available on Amazon. Please remember to bring the book, your bible, and a lunch!
Please note: Bible Study is cancelled on the Wednesday before Thanksgiving, November 22.
The Christmas Season is fast approaching! Please mark your calendars for the following Christmas Season events!
1. Toys for Tots: This Christmas St. Peter's is supporting the Marine's Toys for Tot's program. We have the collection box in the Narthex. Please bring your donations by Sunday, Dec. 3 as the Marines will need time to collect all the boxes and distribute the toys. The toys must be new and unwrapped. Below is a link to the Johnson City Toys for Tot's FAQ's.
Thank you for all your generosity!
2. Saturday, Dec. 2: By the Fireside: Symphony of the Mountains Holiday Concert
The Symphony of the Mountains is having their 'By The Fireside' Christmas Concert on Saturday, December 2 at 3 pm at the Toy F. Reid Eastman Employee Center in Kingsport. Rose Marie has made before the concert lunch reservations at The LongHorn Steakhouse in Kingsport @ noon. Please let Rose Marie know if you are coming to The LongHorn Steakhouse so she can update the reservations. If you are interested in attending the concert, please let Scott know by next Sunday as he will obtain group tickets for us - tickets are $20 each (checks payable to The Symphony of the Mountains).
3. Sunday, Dec. 3, The First Sunday in Advent: After services we will decorate the church including the 'hanging of the greens' for the Advent season.
In preparation for Advent, Mere refreshed and updated our Advent wreathes for the front doors! Thank you, Mere - they are beautiful!
4. Sunday, Dec. 10, The Second Sunday in Advent:
Bishop Jones is visiting St. Peter's on Sunday, December 10! He will be confirming several of our new members. After services we will celebrate with a BBQ lunch. We are asking everyone to bring a dish that goes with BBQ!
5. Sunday, Dec. 17, The Third Sunday in Advent:
We will present The Festival of Nine Lessons and Carols starting at 10:30 am. This service features scripture readings, traditional Christmas hymns, a string quartet from the Symphony of the Mountains and light refreshments after the service.
This past Saturday was Veterans Day. Several members of St. Peter's are veterans and several are parents of active and retired military. Thank you all so much for serving and protecting our freedoms.
Wed., Nov. 15 11 am Women's Bible Study
at the church
Thur., Nov. 16 2 pm Online Prayer Group
Sun., Nov. 19 9:15 am Morning Prayer, Fr. Yossi
10 am Christian Education
11 am Holy Communion, sung service,
Thur., Nov. 23 Happy Thanksgiving
Prayer Group cancelled
Sun., Nov. 26 9:15 am Morning Prayer, Fr. Yossi
10 am Christian Education
11 am Holy Communion, Fr. Yossi
Wed., Nov. 29 11 am Women's Bible Study
at the church
Thur., Nov. 30 2 pm Online Prayer Group