Observing a Holy Lent

“I invite you, in the name of the Church, to the observance of a holy Lent, by self-examination and repentance; by prayer, fasting, and self denial; and by reading and meditating on God’s holy Word.”

This invitation from the Book of Common Prayer’s service for Ash Wednesday marks the beginning of the season of Lent, a solemn season of preparation for the joy of Easter.

You’ll notice seasonal changes in the church. The beautiful new Epiphany banner will be replaced by one for Lent (reconstructed by Ginny Harris from Lenten vestments designed by my mother). The crosses will be draped in purple, the church’s color of penitence. We’ll exchange our silver chalices and patens for simple ones made of pottery.

The liturgy itself will have changes, too. The confession is moved to the beginning of the service, reflecting the penitential nature of the season. The music will have a more somber note. And you won’t hear the word “alleluia” again until the Easter vigil.

We’re offering other ways for you to observe the season. In adult Sunday School, we will continue with the series on caring for creation. In conjunction with that, we have materials to hand out each week focusing on different aspects of ways we can simplify our lives and protect the world God has created. Each week has a different theme, with prayers, questions and actions we can take.

Our Christian Education committee is preparing an intergenerational event around the story of the prodigal son, one of the Gospel readings during Lent, for the second Sunday of the season. You can read more about that elsewhere in the Bellows.

We also have booklets of Lenten meditations, produced by Episcopal Relief and Development, for you to take.

For an entertaining way to begin each day during Lent, I recommend participating in Lent Madness. Modeled on the March Madness college basketball playoffs, Lent Madness features a match-up between two saints each day. By subscribing you receive an email each morning about the saints of the day, and instructions on how to vote. Lent Madness begins with 32 saints competing in the Sweet 16 and goes on to see who will win the coveted Golden Halo. You can subscribe at www.lentmadness.org.

Perhaps most importantly, during Lent we will once again be collecting money to replenish the St. Dunstan’s Medical Fund at Msalata Theological School in Tanzania. The money we send (usually about $5,000 a year) buys mosquito nets, medicine, and glasses for those in the community, and pays for a nurse to come to the school for an hour each day. For many, this is their only access to health care. So please pick up a “Mite Box” and be generous.

I wish you all a holy Lent.


Jazz and Pancakes

On February 7 we will have one service at 10 a.m., featuring a Dixieland Jazz Band. Following the service we’ll have a pancake breakfast (which takes the place of the Shrove Tuesday pancake supper). Tickets for the breakfast are $5. Let the good times roll!

Ash Wednesday Services

The solemn season of Lent begins on Wednesday, February 10. We will have services at noon and 7 p.m.

The Prodigal Son:

a Study for the Whole Church

Sunday, February 21 at 9:30 a.m.

The Christian Education Committee invites all members of St. Dunstan’s to come together in Lent to experience the story of the prodigal son and to reflect, with others in the community, on the meaning of the story for ourselves, our families, the church, and the world.

Whether you are old or young, already familiar with the story or hearing it for the very first time, shy or out-spoken…please join us for this community event at 9:30 a.m. on February 21, where we will learn from each other and have some fun along the way! All are welcome.

Thank you for supporting the committee – and each other – as we explore new ways to do Christian education at St. Dunstan’s.  If you have any questions about this event or the work of the committee, please don’t hesitate to contact Priscilla Davis (pdqui@mindspring.com ) or Ellen Gallow (ellengallow1234@gmail.com).

New Bible Study Begins

Are you interested in studying the Gospel of John? Come join the new Bible study group, which will meet on Tuesday evenings in the library. The class begins February 16, from 7:15-8:15. Bring your Bible.


We welcome David Abner, who comes to us from Church of the Atonement in Sandy Springs.

We welcome Hollis Holland, who comes to us from Church of the Nativity in Ft. Oglethorpe, GA.

We welcome the Goetz family – Spencer, Jane, Ellen, and Spencer – who come to us from St. John’s in Memphis.

We welcome the newly baptized – Bessie Valle; and Vanessa and Julia von der Schulenburg, daughters of Mandy and Bolko von der Schulenburg.

Congratulations to those who were confirmed by Bishop Whitmore in December: Alexander Changus, Quinn Changus, Mekenzie Loyd, Sean Robertson, Jennifer Cline, Sherri Crawford, Jackie O’Connell, Mark O’Connell, Bob Trukenbrod, Lori Westphal.

We pray for the repose of the soul of Dorothy Yates, who died December 29.

We pray for the repose of the soul of founding member Priscilla Bleke, who died in Asheville, N.C.

We pray for the repose of the soul of Virginia Gunn, niece of Nancy Knight and Keith Latimore.


 Congratulations to Laura Withers, who with her teammate, won first place (out of 96 teams) in George Washington University Law School’s constitutional law moot court competition. The final rounds were argued before Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito.

Congratulations to Grace Hauser, who recently starred as Susannah in Davidson College’s performance of Carlisle Floyd’s opera “Susannah.”

Congratulations to Whit Blount, who will represent Galloway at the state swim meets later this month.

Congratulations to Sean Robertson and Joseph Henry Monti, who both were selected to participate in the All State Chorus later this month.

Thank You from Tom and Steven

Thanks to everyone who took part in the beautiful reception after Advent Lessons and Carols. Steven and I were overwhelmed by your kindness, your enthusiasm for our marriage, your generosity, and your hospitality. We are truly blessed to be part of the St. Dunstan’s Parish family.

Music Notes

Celebrate Epiphany with Dixieland Jazz

Here is a little background on Dixieland jazz, with acknowledgement to Wikipedia. Dixieland jazz, sometimes referred to as hot jazz or early jazz, is a style which developed in New Orleans at the start of the 20th century, and was spread to Chicago and New York City by New Orleans bands in the 1910s.

“Basin Street Blues” and “When the Saints Go Marching In” are well-known Dixieland standards. Dixieland evolved into Chicago-style jazz, as developed by Louis Armstrong, and Chicago-style jazz was the music that began the Lindy Hop dance craze in Harlem. The definitive Dixieland sound is created when one instrument (usually the trumpet) plays the melody or a recognizable variation of it, and other instruments improvise around it.

Dixieland jazz, then, suggests New Orleans, and at this time of year, New Orleans suggests Mardi Gras celebrations. Celebrating is what we will be doing at St. Dunstan’s on Sunday, February 7. The music for our Eucharist will be led by Frank Bock and his Dixieland Jazz ensemble of trumpet, trombone, clarinet/alto sax, and tuba, with our own Judy Guard at the piano. St. Dunstan’s Choir will join in with a beautiful arrangement of “Give Me Jesus.” You really don’t want to miss this, so come and bring friends and neighbors.

Youth Choir Forming

St. Dunstan’s middle and high schoolers are forming a new Youth Choir! They will rehearse on Sundays in Lent, beginning February 14 after the 10:45 service. Their goal will be to lead the music for our Easter Vigil service on Saturday, March 26. Six of our great young people are already committed, but more would be even better. Contact Tom at tom@stdunstan.net or 205-305-8208.

Mary and Martha’s Place Workshop

Mindful Eating: Savoring Earth’s Bounty

Tamie Cook, the former Culinary Director for Alton Brown, will be the guide for the day and share ways to create meals and time at table that reflect our deep desires. During the day together we will:

Discuss how buying food, preparing and eating it can become a holy act;

Explore ways to transform our kitchens and tables into places of hospitality, gratitude and celebration; and

Work together to create a community meal.

The workshop will be held at St. Dunstan’s on Saturday, March 5, from 9 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. The cost is $60 per participant. For additional information and to register online visit: www.maryandmarthasplace.com and click on Special Events. Or, contact MMP directly at 404-239-9382 or staff@maryandmarthasplace.com.

Yoga Retreat to Benefit streetGRACE

A women’s yoga retreat will be held Friday, February 19, from 7 to 8:30 p.m. and Saturday, February 20, from 9:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the parish hall of St. Dunstan’s to benefit streetGRACE. This group is a non-profit organization that helps fight the commercial sexual exploitation of children through advocacy, prevention and resoration.

The cost of the retreat is a donation to streetGRACE. It is not necessary to attend all sessions. Payment may be made in cash, or checks written to Peachtree Presbyterian Church, or charged to MasterCard or Visa.

St. Dunstan’s and Peachtree Presbyterian Church actively support streetGRACE along with 40 other churches in the area.

From the Parish Administrator

 Amazon Smile

Our treasurer, Deedee Ewubare, tells me Amazon Smile gives us a bit of money every quarter from the purchases of those people who set up a Smile account with St. Dunstan’s as the non-profit beneficiary. Amazon Smile is a program in which Amazon donates 0.5% of the purchase price of eligible products to a charitable organization selected by the customer.

Here is the direct link for St. Dunstan’s Smile account: http://smile.amazon.com/ch/58-0957474. All that’s necessary after the initial set up is to login to smile.amazon.com when you make purchases. Please consider helping St. Dunstan’s with your purchases from Amazon.

Birthdays and Anniversaries

Please let me know if I have missed your birthday or anniversary in the weekly bulletin. There have been many changes in our church database software and I need to know if I have omitted an important date. Just send the information to Susan Teat at office@stdunstan.net. Thanks!

A Prayer for Lent

God of times and seasons, you have brought us again to Lent for the study of your word, for remembering the temptations faced by your son, and for contemplating his death on the cross. The birds know their seasons; forbid that we be blind to our times. Grant us a Lenten blessing, and may we not miss this time of growth. We ask this through Christ our Lord.

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