Upcoming EventsArt & Music Festival Artist Preview Reception: February 21 at 6 pm
Musical Revue and Reception: February 22 at 5 pm
Shrove Tuesday Pancake Supper: February 25 at 5:30 pm
Ash Wednesday services : February 26 at 9 am and 7 pm
Brown Bag Lunch : March 3 at noon
Lenten Book Study: March 3 at 1 pm
Circle of Friends: March 4 at 6 pm
Vestry retreat: March 6 at 6 pm
Ongoing EventsBible Study: Wednesdays at 10 am
Choir Rehearsal: Thursdays at 7 pm
Shrove Tuesday Pancake Supper
Celebrate Mardi Gras with St. Francis! Our Shrove Tuesday Pancake Supper will be held at the West Chester Diner (located at 1147 West Chester Pike, West Chester) on February 25 from 5:30 to 7:30 pm. St. Francis will have its own room and breakfast buffet. The cost per person is $10.00.
A sign-up sheet is in the Narthex.
Lectionary Bible Study
Lectionary Bible Study meets on Wednesdays at 10 am to pray and discuss the readings for the following Sunday. Holy Eucharist follows the study.
Everyone is welcome to attend.
Ash Wednesday services will be held on February 26 at 9 am and 7 pm. The early service will be followed by the Lectionary Bible Study.
Ash Wednesday is the first day of Lent, the liturgical season during which we prepare our hearts, minds and bodies for the events of Holy Week and Easter. The Book of Common Prayer (pg. 265) invites God's people "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." If it would be helpful to discuss your plans for Lent, Fr. Kevin is available by appointment.
Brown Bag Lunch
Please join us on Tuesday, March 3 at noon
for a presentation by Main Line Meals on Wheels. Their mission is to deliver nutritious meals to the aged, convalescents, homebound and handicapped persons who are unable to shop or cook for themselves, regardless of race, color, creed, age or ability to pay. https://www.mainlinemealsonwheels.org/
Circle of Friends
The first Wednesday of each month we will gather in the Narthex to write notes of encouragement, get well cards, thank you notes, "missing you" notes, and even birthday cards. Cards, pens, stamps, etc., will be provided.
This will be a time of pastoral sharing and action - an easy way to get involved in the ministry of Pastoral Care. The evening will conclude with the service of Compline from the Book of Common Prayer.
The next Circle of Friends is Wednesday, March 4 at 6 pm.
Lenten Book Study: The Sabbath
Led by Fr. Kevin, the Lenten Book Study will be on Tuesdays, March 3 to April 7 from 1 to 2:30 pm at St. Francis.
"The main themes of faith lie in the realm of time." (Rabbi Heschel). Do you ever feel overwhelmed? Does life ever seem so busy, so over-filled with things and obligations, that you lose sight of the joy and purpose of it all? From the earliest pages of Genesis, God offers humanity a gift, a remedy for this common ailment, in the practice of Shabbat (the "Sabbath"). Over six weeks, as we journey toward the Paschal Feast (Easter), we will explore the gift of Sabbath using renowned Jewish Scholar Abraham Heschel's short but important work on the practice of Sabbath. Heschel's wisdom on this ancient practice of our Jewish sisters and brothers will speak to us, inspire us ... and challenge us to ask the question: "To whom (or what) are we beholden?"
Copies of the book are available for purchase at St. Francis for $8.00 (see Fr. Kevin). All are welcome to attend.
Discipleship: Lenten Studies at St. FrancisMarch 1 - Get Your House in Order: Wills, POA's, and Other Stuff We Forget. Guest speaker: Steve Potts, Attorney
March 8 - Going Home: Funeral Services & Burial Options. Guest speaker: Michael DellaVechia, Funeral Director
March 15 - Caring Hands: Understanding Hospice care. Guest Speaker: Bobbi Castellan, Hospice Care Specialist
March 22 - The Last Celebration: Episcopal Burials and the Book of Common Prayer. Includes a Funeral Music Sing-Along with Joe Perry!
March 29 - Final Things Workshop: Plan your funeral over dinner with friends! Forms will be provided to choose readings, hymns, and other important details. Copies will be made and kept on file in the St. Francis Office.
Get Your House in Order - Every person eventually takes the same mysterious journey. In this fun, interactive program, we will look at the practical matters of preparing for death. What legal documents should have you have in place? What do others need to know about our wishes? What burial options are available? Also, how is the Episcopal Burial Service constructed? What are the options? What readings should I choose? What hymns? Answering these questions in advance can be a tremendous blessing to your family in a time of great emotional and mental stress. The last meeting will be a workshop to plan our own funeral service! A light supper of soup & salad will be provided. A sign-up sheet is in the Narthex. The classes will be at St. Francis on Sunday evenings, March 1 to March 29 from 5 to 6:30 pm.
Spring Francis & Friends - Save the Date!
It's almost time for March Madness! Whether you like watching college basketball or not, please plan on attending the Francis & Friends "NCAA Watch Party" on Friday, March 27th from 6 pm to 9 pm at the Callahans' house (1722 Bow Tree Drive, West Chester). Pizza, snacks, soft drinks, and desserts will be provided but please BYOB! Babysitting and videos will be available in the Callahans' basement, so bring the whole family. Dress is casual, and feel free to wear your favorite team shirt, even if they are not among the field of 64. Please sign-up in the narthex so we know how much food to purchase. The Fellowship Committee will be jumping through hoops to make it a fun evening!!
The next Book Group meeting is on March 20 at 7:30 pm in the church library. The book for March is The Home for Unwanted Girls by Joanna Goodman.
From Barnes and Noble "Overview": In 1950s Quebec, French and English tolerate each other with precarious civility. Maggie's English-speaking father has ambitions for his daughter that don't include marriage to the poor French boy on the next farm over. When she becomes pregnant at fifteen, her parents force her to give baby Elodie up for adoption.
Elodie is raised in Quebec's impoverished orphanage system. This takes a tragic turn when Elodie, along with thousands of other orphans in Quebec, is declared mentally ill as the result of a new law that provides more funding to psychiatric hospitals than to orphanages. Bright and determined, Elodie withstands abysmal treatment at the nuns' hands. At seventeen she is thrust into an alien, often unnerving world.
Maggie cannot forget the daughter she was forced to abandon. As time passes, the stories of Maggie and Elodie intertwine but never touch, until Maggie realizes she must take what she wants from life and go in search of her long-lost daughter, finally reclaiming the truth that has been denied them both.
For more information on Book Group, please contact Elizabeth Pitt.
No Fooling...Save the Date, April 1!
The Outreach Committee will be hosting our next Red Cross blood drive on Wednesday, April 1 from 2 to 7 pm in the Undercroft. Generally speaking, a donor can give blood every 56 days. Power Red donors may give every 110 days. To learn more about donation requirements visit:
Online sign up information for the St Francis drive will be posted in March. For questions, contact Anne Crowley.
Prayer Shawl Ministry
Prayer shawls are available in the library for pastoral use. Each one has a cross sewn on the bottom and a card with information about St. Francis on one side and a prayer on the other side: "May you who receives this shawl be cradled in hope, kept in joy, graced with peace and wrapped in love. Blessed Be!"
If you want to give a shawl to someone in need, please let Barbara Pearse or the church office know to help them keep track of the number of shawls available. We can always use more shawls. If you have one to donate, please contact Barbara for the cross and card to attach to the shawl.
The clear benefit of wearing your name tag on Sunday morning is that it helps us all learn to know each other better. In spite of knowing this, many of us simply forget. So, as the new year begins, the I-W-C Committee is going to help you develop the habit of wearing your name tag. Here's how it will work:
1. Pick up your name tag as you enter the building Sunday morning.
2. Wear it to the worship service and coffee hour.
3. When you're getting ready to leave coffee hour, take off your name tag and put it in the basket, which will be available at coffee hour on the table near the coffee pots. Name tags from 8 am and 10 am worshippers will go into the same basket - everyone has a chance to win!
4. Repeat steps 1-3 weekly. Diane will retrieve the basket and replace the name tags on the board in the narthex before the following Sunday.
Building new habits is hard. To encourage you to work on this one, we're creating a Name Tag Game. Every week when you wear your name tag and place it in the basket at the end of coffee hour, you are automatically entering yourself in a contest to win one of the new St. Francis mugs. Diane will randomly draw a winner each week as she replaces the name tags on the board in the Narthex. You have to play (i.e., Steps 1-4, above) to win a mug. And if you play, our St. Francis community wins, too.
If you do not have a name tag or you cannot find yours, please contact the church office.
Donation to West Chester Food Cupboard
In addition to donations from our vegetable garden, St. Francis collects on-going donations of non-perishable food items for the West Chester Food Cupboard. The collection box is in the corner of the Narthex (foyer) under the coat rack. As the donation box fills up, Michelle Samet and other volunteers take donations to the Food Cupboard. Donations are welcome any time.
How can you CONNECT with St. Francis?
by Cindy Claffey, IWC Committee
The Invite-Welcome-Connect Committee encourages you to consider how you can connect with St. Francis by joining a ministry or group. Opportunities abound for members, new and old, to get involved with the social, spiritual and service activities of our parish.
The IWC Committee has published a directory of ministries, which includes short descriptions of many groups within the parish, along with time commitments, contact information, and any training or background expectations. Look for this publication on the Welcome Table and the information table at the top of the steps in the Narthex. Or click here for Easy Opportunities To Get Involved
Flowers on the Altar at St. Francis
Please help support the flower fund by remembering and celebrating people in your lives. It may be someone who is deceased, or someone celebrating a special event. After the 10 am Sunday service, we break down the altar flowers into bouquets that are delivered to those who are sick or need the smiles that flowers bring.
The flower donation is $50 for a week. Click here
for the form to complete (or pick up a form at the back of the church) so we can acknowledge and celebrate your gift and people. For more information, please contact Sheila Rees.
Are you receiving the weekly Parish News that gets emailed to all parishioners each Friday? Do you receive the Fieldnotes newsletter each month? Are you receiving all the Special Anouncement emails? All these emails come via Constant Contact from St. Francis. If you are not receiving these emails, please contact Diane in the Parish Office at 610-647-0130. If you use Gmail, you may find the Constant Contact emails in your Promotions folder.
Have you had your picture taken for the online pictorial directory? Having your picture in the directory is a great help for old and new members alike. It connects names and faces, increases involvement, and helps avoid some awkward and embarrassing moments!
If you have not had your picture taken for the online directory, please see David Brooks or Fr. Kevin. If you do not have access to the directory, please contact the parish office.