A Joyful Noise | February 2021

A Community of Faith

Senior Warden Maggie Collinge

The following is an excerpt from my EfM study guide that I want to share with you all.  It seems fitting as we consider the new year together as church family.

The Community of Faith

“The community of faith as such must be faithful under the covenant; it must also be a community of hope, looking forward eagerly to the further coming of the reign of God and seeking to forward that mission in all its affairs…… it must be a community of love shaping its internal ministry and relationships by that principle, and deeply engaged as a community of loving service and mission to the world for which Jesus died and the Spirit fills.  The community of faith must be a prudent community, carrying habitual principle and relationship into concrete acts of external support and external mission.  It must be a community of justice and mercy, conducting its internal discipline and procedures in a just/merciful manner, and promoting justice in the larger community it inhabits.  It must be a community of fortitude, prepared to risk its own well being for the sake of its mission and not become a mere museum or defensive circle of wagons.  And it must be a community of temperance, in both inner ministry and outer mission embodying and advocating balanced life.”

beloved dust: tides of the spirit in the christian life by robert david hughes iii

I suggest that you read this and then, in a couple of days, read it again.  We are all part of a great adventure as we each work out our place in Total Common  Ministry.  Where do we each fit, what is God calling us to do?

Meet Our New Senior Warden, Maggie Collinge

Diane Canington

Maggie (Margaret) Collinge begins her role as the Church Senior Warden this month, after serving on the Bishop’s Committee for the past two years.  She came to Christ Church three years ago from the La Conner Methodist Church, serving there for several years as a lay leader and delegate to the Annual Conference.  Maggie and her husband Larry have lived in Anacortes for the past eight years, where they have developed two traditions:  working, individually on copies of the daily crossword puzzle and then comparing answers; and playing cribbage together each evening.  (Maggie won a cribbage contest a couple of years ago, when she was competing with 74 players in their winter hometown of Melaque, Mexico, which can be described as a tropical desert.)

Maggie was born in Santa Barbara, California, living there and in Pasadena for a short time, until her family settled down in Healdsburg, California, where they lived on a ranch.  She describes receiving fresh warm milk from the foreman’s cow and experiencing a beautiful country childhood.  The family attended St. Paul’s Episcopal Church in Healdsburg, whose structure resembles Christ Church. These were years when households shared the same telephone party line, and as she describes it, two ladies ran the exchange and “knew everything that was going on from births, to deaths, to engagements, –in a good way.”  Fortunately, her brother still lives on the property, whom she can occasionally visit.  Maggie attended San Francisco State University for a few years, where she met her future husband, Larry.  This was a time where there was a great deal of protest and teacher strikes, both exciting and daunting.

She and Larry moved to Washington State shortly after their marriage in 1969, settling first in Port Angeles and later building a home in La Conner.  They raised two children, Iris and Max, who is married to Sarah, and have two granddaughters, Hannah, 14, and Sadie, 12.  She loves spending time with them and believes a grandparent’s role is ‘to make memories.”  Maggie enjoys making sweaters and blankets for the girls and involves them in selecting the patterns and yarns.

When Maggie decided it was time to leave the La Conner Methodist Church, she sat down with the now-retired pastor, Marcella Baker, to find a good time to announce her leave taking, Pastor Baker suggested that she do it just before going to her winter home in Melaque, and to take some time to find a new church.  Maggie took that advice and upon coming to Christ Church, she felt it was like returning home, thinking of her time in Healdsburg.  The liturgy and dark wood sanctuary was appealing,  but the spirit of the people was the deciding factor.  Maggie is currently in her third year of Education for Ministry, is a member of the choir, Prayer Shawl Ministry, Care Ministry, as well as attending Centering Prayer weekly gatherings.

Bold Steps

Reverend Diane Ramerman

We have completed the three sessions planned for Bold Steps, our congregational discussion of Total Common Ministry.  After Rev. Carol Rodin retired, and lay member Dale Ramerman stepped out of the Circle, the congregation was eager to discuss next steps.  What is God calling Christ Church to be now? 

Two things have become clear in these discussions. First, many are deeply invested in the way the ministry of all the baptized is lived out in Total Common Ministry.   They appreciate the opportunities for spiritual and personal growth that this model of ministry offers. Second, how we at Christ Church use our missional dollars is important to us. We are committed to outreach, to missional ministry beyond our church walls,  and in particular, we want to use the dollars generated by the Red Door Thrift Shop to address the greater needs of the community.  We do not want to re-direct our missional dollars to pay clergy.  And, we do not want to sell our mission properties (Gentry House and the Red Door) to generate funds to pay clergy at the Diocesan pay scale. 

This clarity has implications for our ministry together and the financial decisions that support our church.  At our third session of Bold Steps on February 3, we discussed ways in which we might ‘tweak’ the model of Total Common Ministry.   Can we adjust the length of individual commitment to the Circle, or the requirements for formation?  Can we find ways to make the formation and work of the ordained clergy in the Circle less time consuming?  Are there ways to compensate expenses,  so that ‘bi-vocational’ is a real possibility and not just words on a page?  When there were six people commissioned to the Circle and sharing the role of clergy, and two  priests who fulfilled the ordained ministries of sacramentalist and accountability to the Diocese, we functioned well. Working  together as a congregation, how can we  re-establish that level of shared commitment?  

Our Call to Ministry will go forward. Over the next month congregants will be asked to nominate persons for Circle ministry.  You are asked to nominate because of the gifts you see in particular individuals – remembering that competencies will be developed through formation and education.  Chronological youth is not a spiritual gift – and age is not a factor in the Call to Ministry.  Factors to consider are commitment to baptismal covenant, to learning and helping others to learn,  and to conveying the call of the faithful God to the world.  Should we continue to consider reallocating  our ministry dollars, or raising more through increased pledges or fund raising activities?  These questions bear strongly on the sustainability of our church, whether as Total Common Ministry or returning to a traditional model of ministry with paid clergy at the center.

Faithfully, Rev. Diane

Ash Wednesday

Lent begins on February 17.
Ash Wednesday service at 5:00 pm, via Zoom

Remember you are dust and to dust you shall return.

If joining by phone:
Meeting ID 503 653 606   One tap mobile  +12532158782,,503653606# US (Tacoma)

Congregational Leadership Conference

Hosted by The Diocese of Olympia
Saturday, February 13
9:00 am – 4:00 pm, via Zoom

This workshop is designed for Wardens, BC members, and Treasurers, and anyone who may be interested in serving in one of those roles. You will gain important tools and insights that will help you fulfill your role as a lay leader in the congregation.

Information on workshops, and registration, are available at the following link.

Mindful Poetry: Japanese Tanka

The follow tanka was written by creative poets Margo Huth, Brian Lennstrom, Sandy Mathis, Betty Anne McCoy, Mark Perschbacher, and Sylvia Sepulveda at Christ Church’s January 26 Mindful Poetry practice. The tanka is a genre of classical Japanese poetry consisting of five lines; the first and third line are comprised of five syllables, and the second, fourth, and fifth lines are comprised of seven syllables, for a  total of 31 syllables.

Photo Credit: Bryan Hanson

Snow Geese

All rise together:
Is that a white cloud I see?
Commuters honking,
Myriad of wings reply,
Silencing wind washing through.  

Mindful Poetry meets on the fourth Tuesday of the month, 6-7 pm, via Zoom.
Our next gathering is February 23.
Please join in. All are welcome.

If joining by phone:
Meeting ID 503 653 606   One tap mobile  +12532158782,,503653606# US (Tacoma)

Christ Church’s Stained Glass Windows

The Resurrection

Reverend Deacon Eric Johnson

The last of a series of eight articles on the stained glass windows in Christ Church.

It’s difficult to see the entire Resurrection image in the stained-glass window in Christ Church; much of it was hidden when the pipe organ was installed.  Well-concealed in the corner is the only witness to the Resurrection in this picture: the guard who kneels, resting on his sword.  Two images are predominant in this image: the seven pomegranates and the white flag with the red cross that Christ holds.

The image of pomegranates has a long history in Judaism.  The book of Exodus (28:33) directs that the robe worn by the High Priest be embroidered with pomegranates. Pomegranates were among the fruits brought back from the Land of Canaan by Moses’ spies (Numbers 13). 1 Kings 7:13-22 describes the capitals of the bronze pillars of the temple as being adorned with 200 pomegranates. Jewish tradition holds that the pomegranate is a symbol of righteousness because it contains 613 seeds, equivalent to the 613 mitzvot (commandments) of the Torah. Pomegranates are also a symbol of knowledge, learning, and plenteousness, and some Jewish scholars held that the pomegranate was the forbidden fruit of the Garden of Eden. In Christian art, one of the earliest mosaics of Christ is one that depicts Jesus and the Chi Rho bordered by pomegranates, which are, at the same time, symbols of the fullness of the suffering and resurrection of Christ.

The flag that Jesus holds became a popular symbol in the 12th century, with the rise of medieval heraldry and the crusades. The crusades did much to unite the vassal states of Europe into a more cohesive whole. With the crusades came the rise of Christendom, and the image that connected peoples to each other were flags with crosses. During the Crusades artists began to depict Christ—at the moment of the Resurrection—carrying the same standard as the one used by the knights as they rode into battle. Christ, for the crusaders, was their standard in all things, and they were bound to follow Christ even to their own death and resurrection. Flags with crosses still remain in many of the flags of European nations. St. George’s cross, which is the flag carried by Christ in this window, is also the flag of England and has a central place in the flag of the Episcopal church. 

Sr. Mary Beckett advises us (Sister Wendy on the Art of Mary) that as Jesus holds the cross at his Resurrection, we are reminded that when we take up our cross, not only do we accept its reality and its harshness, but we also are to make use of it. Jesus used his cross to redeem the world. Although suffering can turn us in on ourselves and diminish us, it can also turn us outward toward God to an unimaginable fulfillment.


Happy Birthday to…

…Valerie Long on February 14

Happy Anniversary to…

……Myrna & Les McIalwain on February 15

………Sylvia Sepulveda & Scott Ledbetter on February 15

Please send the month & date of your birthday, baptismal date, anniversary, and/or other special occasions so we can help you celebrate your blessings in the Joyful Noise. Please send to People’s Warden Judith Render at lorneandjudith@hotmail.com, 360-982-2770.

Sunday Services

 7 February 2021
 Epiphany 5
 10:30 am Morning Prayer
  Presider: Rev. Brian Lennstrom
  Homilist: Ms. Shirley Barrett
  Deacon: Rev. Dn. Eric Johnson
  Readers: Becky Lenntrom, Jerlyn Caba
  Isaiah 40:21-31
  Psalm 147:1-12, 20c
  1 Corinthians 9:16-23
  Mark 1:29-39

 14 February 2021
 Transfiguration Sunday
 10:30 am Morning Prayer
  Presider: Rev. Deacon Eric Johnson
  Homilist: Rev. Diane Ramerman
  Readers: Shirley Barrett, Pamela Foggin
  2 Kings 2:1-12
  Psalm 50:1-6
  2 Corinthians 4:3-6
  Mark 9:2-9

 21 February 2021
 Lent 1
 10:30 am Morning Prayer
  Presider: Ms. Shirley Barrett
  Homilist: Rev. Dn. Eric Johnson
  Deacon: Rev. Dn. Eric Johnson
  Readers: Siriana Simonsen, Melissa Simonsen
  Genesis 9:8-17
  Psalm 25:1-9
  1 Peter 3:18-22
  Mark 1:9-15

 28 February 2021
 Lent 2
 10:30 am Morning Prayer
  Presider: Rev. Brian Lennstrom
  Homilist: Rev. Brian Lennstrom
  Readers: Creamy Wilkins, Erin Kohlhaas
  Genesis 17:1-7, 15-16
  Psalm 22:22-30
  Romans 4:13-25
  Mark 8:31-38

 7 March 2021
 Lent 3
 10:30 am Morning Prayer
  Presider: Rev. Deacon Eric Johnson
  Homilist: Mr. John Okerman
  Readers: Carleton Manning, Sandy Mathis
  Exodus 20:1-17
  Psalm 19
  1 Corinthians 1:18-25
  John 2:13-22

A Joyful Noise | February 2021