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 A Note from the Rector

October is often considered the month for that dreaded stewardship campaign.  The time of our church year when the clergy or the treasurer stand up in their soap box and try to creatively convince the people in the pews to consider their giving practices. It is a time when there is a plea for funds and a request to pledge your contributions for the coming year. But what if we didn't do that this year?  What if this year we do things a little differently and approach this often-taboo word of stewardship from a different perspective? Over the month of October, the words from the Rector’s Desk will invite us to ponder stewardship from different perspectives, different ideas and perhaps even challenge you in new ways. I hope that it will inspire you, excite you, challenge you, or at least make you stop and think about how, what and when you considering giving in this place and beyond.  

Yesterday was the Saint Day for St. Francis of Assisi. St. Francis is of course a fellow we are familiar with here at St. Mary’s because he is the patron saint of animals and a prominent figure in our Pet Memorial Garden. But did you know that St. Francis is also a big promotor of stewardship. A simple friar who found a calling and whose devotion to following the way of Jesus, Francesco di Pietro di Bernardone, was born into a very wealthy family. As a child he learned to read and write Latin through a local church school and became knowledgeable of French language and literature from his family’s business dealings as cloth merchants. In 1202 Francesco took part in a war between Perugia and Assisi where he was taken capture for a year and became gravely ill. It was after this time, of having so much of the abundance God had given him nearly taken away, that he began his life of prayer and solitude to discern God’s will for his life. This devotion to God, and his thankfulness for all that God had given him, led St. Francis to give up his fortune and live a life of poverty. Over his lifetime he became devoted to charity, evangelical work and a reverence of the Divine in all creation.  

St. Francis lived his life by the words he is so famously quoted for, “That it is in giving that we receive,” knowing that the true nature of a Christian living is to recognize that abundance God provides us, recognize that we often have much more than we truly need, and seek out ways to give back to God through the very nature of that which God has created. St. Francis was one of the great examples of stewardship, and the importance of giving back to God through loving service, so that through our gifts the love of God can become a tangible reality in our world.  

This week as we prepare to celebrate Thanksgiving this coming weekend, I wonder what abundance God has provided in your life? I invite you to spend some time in the coming weeks thinking this through, and searching your heart to ways that you might be able to give back go God – be it through the work of our church here, through outside community groups, through helping a friend, donating to a cause etc. . . How do you see yourself contributing to the kingdom of God, so that the love of God can be realized here in this place?  


Decorating the Church in Thanksgiving to God

Join us on Saturday October 8th @ 10am in the church as we decorate for our Thanksgiving Sunday service. If you have extra produce or flowers from your garden, bring them too as we share our abundance with God and prepare to give thanks together!  

Thanksgiving Potluck – Sunday October 9th

Don’t forget to come to church hungry this week as we will be sharing in a thanksgiving potluck lunch after the service. If you have signed up to bring a dish – thank you in advance! And if not, you are still welcome to bring a surprise dish or just come as you are!  Hope to see you there.  

Blessing of the Animals – Sunday October 16th

For the love of all creatures great and small we will be holding a Blessing of the Animals service at 1pm on October 16. Creatures of all sorts are welcome to join us in the Pet Memorial Garden as we give thanks for all the joy and love that these animals bring to our lives!      

       Christmas Fair Update
by John S.


As John announced at church last Sunday, we have now begun our advertising campaign for the Christmas Fair which will include the Nanoose Neighbours Magazine, Nanoose Business Directory, the Parksville/Qualicum News, local radio stations, the Diocesan Newspaper, our website and our Facebook page. You can also help by taking some posters from the back of church or the church office and displaying them in areas where they will get noticed which could include any local businesses that you frequent. Please contact John if you have any specific suggestions for advertising he may have overlooked.

This week’s list of new donations includes the following businesses – Karen Kenyon of Royal LePage, Jamie Odgers of ReMax of Nanaimo, Brenda Nicolls of Royal LePage, Laura Solowoniuk of 460 Realty, and several members of our congregation, including Shirley G. This brings our total donations to date to 50 items!

If you too would like to make a donation, please contact John S.  

Are you ready to offer your voice?

Now that we have the readers’ schedule posted on the whiteboard in the hal,l we are looking for looking for people to read or lead intercessions on Sunday Mornings.   If this is a ministry you are interested in, please speak with Rev. Kirsten or sign up on the READERS ROSTER WHITEBOARD located by Rector’s office in the hall.  Thanks to those who have already signed up!  


Emergency First Aid & Survival Kits are being sold as a fundraiser for the Tumaini Fund, which supports orphans in Tanzania. See the Tumaini noticeboard in the church hall, or speak to Val or Marg.