This Sunday is one of the most fun services of the year, our annual Blessing of the Animals. Bring your beloved furred, feathered, or finned friends to church with you to receive a blessing, and to acknowledge what a blessing they are in our lives. We’ll be blessing critters at both services. And bring a bag of cat or dog food with you to donate to an animal shelter from the animals of St. Dunstan’s. The service is attached. And remember there is no Sunday School this day.
October brings us back-to-back treats. The following Sunday, October 9, is the return after three years of the Flying Pig BBQ. The feast will begin after the 10:45 service. We ask that you sign up by Sunday so that we can give a head count to BBQ guru John Gimson so he will know how much pork and chicken to buy. Tickets are $15, and we ask that you bring a side dish to share. It should be a joyful day.
October is Pride Month in Atlanta. The diocese will sponsor the 32nd Annual Pride Eucharist on Thursday, October 6, at 7:30 p.m at All Saints Episcopal Church (the corner of West Peachtree and North Avenue). Bishop Wright will preach and preside at the Eucharist. All are welcome to attend.
Finally, you may know that for many years St. Dunstan’s has helped meet the medical needs of the Msalato Theological School community in Tanzania. We have paid for a new pump for their well, and have sent $5,000 a year, which is enough to provide mosquito nets, eye glasses, and medicine for the community, as well as pay for a nurse to be at the school. This year we increased our gift to $6,000. Yesterday I received this email from the Rev. Sandy McCann, a priest from this diocese who worked at Msalato for many years.
I wanted you and your vestry and congregation to know that with the high value of the dollar, the $6,000 you sent is enough for each student and tutor to get a family insurance policy at a cost of 60,000 Tanzanian shillings ($26). It only covers certain medications, but with this generous gift there is plenty left over to cover meds and other emergent needs not included. 26 sounds incredible to us, but when I left in 2016 the insurance was less that $5 per family. Inflation is everywhere.
I doubt any of us can imagine the burden that this insurance removes from the student who is away from their family living in some distant village. Many male students feel a lot of guilt for leaving their wives alone to farm and to take care of the children with no to little income. It is just what has to be done to follow their call, so they pray and trust God to keep their families alive.
Honestly, Tricia, we have no idea. I lived there for 12 years, and I know that even I cannot grasp the depth of poverty. The student featured in our endowment campaign walked 12 hours to begin school at Msalato. He would not ride the bus, because he wanted to save every penny he received from selling his precious goats for his school fees.
Both the Reverends Kabia (Principal) and Ndahani (accountant) have sent their sincere appreciation through me. Also, St Dunstan’s is invited to visit anytime! Karibu.
With sincere gratitude for the faithfulness of St Dunstan’s,
Hope to see you Sunday.