Dear friends,

Here is this week’s stewardship testimonial, this time by vestry member Jackie O’Connell.  I hope you have enjoyed reading these as much as I have. Especially now when we can not be physically together I have enjoyed hearing people’s stories about what St. Dunstan’s  means to them. This is the last official stewardship testimonial, but if you’d like to share your story about St. Dunstan’s I think people would love to hear it. Please feel free to send them to me.

I have also attached a pledge card. Thank you to all who have already sent yours in. If you haven’t yet, you can mail it in or email the pledge card (or just an email) to our treasurer Lee Morris. Thank you all for your continued support of St. Dunstan’s.


Greetings fellow St. Dunstan parishioners! I hope you are all doing well; I miss all of you! Thank you for taking the time to read my stewardship testimonial. I hope it helps you to understand the importance of our congregation and the impact that we have on one another…your support, encouragement, and kindness (even through the smallest gestures) mean so much to my family and me. 

I was raised in two different religious environments, as my parents divorced when I was four; I attended Catholic church when I was with my mother, and a non-denominational Christian church when I was with my father. Once I was in high school (and through college and graduate school), I rarely attended church; nothing seemed to “fit.” 

After meeting Mark (who was raised Episcopalian), we spent many Sundays attending different churches. While living in Knoxville, we struggled to find a church that felt like “home” to us and we settled for attending a large Catholic church most Sundays. When Mark was presented with an opportunity to work in Atlanta, we made a commitment to find our “church home” after we moved into our Atlanta home.

Mark, Reese, and I moved to Atlanta in the summer of 2014. Little did we know that our family home would lead us directly to our church home. Our neighbors? Tricia, Joe, and Joseph Henry. Shortly after moving-in, Tricia and Joseph Henry came over with a delicious cake, welcoming us to the neighborhood. I invited them in, and we talked while Reese (about 8 months old at the time), played. Joseph Henry (perhaps 13 years old at the time), promptly asked, “Has that baby been baptized?” Honestly, I was a little taken-aback! Yet, I laughed and said, “Actually, no. But my husband and I would like her to be baptized.” Joseph Henry responded, “Well, my mom can do that for you.” 

At this point, I believe Tricia was stepping backwards towards the door, obviously embarrassed. However, I was intrigued and wanted to know more. Tricia graciously told us about St. Dunstan’s and invited us to service. We attended a service the following week and loved it! 

We enjoy and appreciate so many things about St. Dunstan’s: the people (everyone is so kind and welcoming), Tricia’s sermons, the sense of community, the natural setting, the music, the outreach and support that we offer to so many in need, the various opportunities to serve, the diversity and acceptance of ALL, Sunday school and Godly Play, and of course, we LOVE Dunstan the Cat! 

Of utmost importance to Mark and me is the church “family” that Reese has grown-up with…it humbles us and comforts us to know that YOU ALL care for her, support her, and encourage her to love God and community as we do. Thank you.

We have felt welcome and comfortable at St. Dunstan’s since we first attended. Every time I walk into church, I immediately feel as if I am being embraced, not only by God’s presence, but by all of you. We have found our “church home” at St. Dunstan’s!

And yes; Tricia did baptize Reese (and she confirmed Mark and me as Episcopalians). Thank you Tricia (and Joseph Henry!)


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