St. Andrew’s United Church

Announcements for Sunday, May 14, 2017



Welcome to St. Andrew’s! We are gathered for worship on the traditional territories of the Musqueam, Squamish and Tsleil-Waututh First Nations and acknowledge their stewardship of this land throughout the ages. Please help yourself to Fair Trade coffee, tea, or water at the back of the Sanctuary before worship. We would appreciate it if you would return your empty cup to the refreshment table before you leave. The washrooms are located downstairs, which are accessible from the stairs off the Narthex (foyer) or the left front side of the Sanctuary. Especially if you are visiting, please join us downstairs in the Friendship Room following worship for conversation and refreshments. We would love to get to know you—and for you to know us!



The flowers on the communion table this morning were given by Gail Sokalski in memory of her parents, Mike and Doris Sokalski.



A sacrament is a symbolic action, or ritual, by which people of faith encounter the presence and goodness of God. In a sacrament, ordinary things like water, bread, and wine are used to point us to God and God’s love, reminding us of the sacred in life. In the United Church, we celebrate two sacraments: baptism, the ritual that formally recognizes we belong to the Christian community, and communion, a symbolic meal initiated by Jesus. These are of central importance to our faith.

Baptism is a symbolic action that signifies the new life God gives us as we join the church community. Baptism uses water as a symbolic cleansing that signifies the acceptance of new life within the church family. The sacrament of baptism is the single rite of initiation into the Christian community, the church.

The United Church offers baptism to all ages. We believe the gift of God’s love doesn’t depend on our ability to understand it, so we baptize people as infants right up through adulthood. With children, instruction is given to parents or sponsors to equip them for the child’s Christian nurture. During the ceremony, everyone in the congregation pledges support for the child and his or her parents.

Baptism is not a requirement for God’s love. We believe people who die without baptism are in no way condemned, lost, or damned.

Baptism in the United Church is recognized by all denominations of the Christian church that practise infant baptism. Similarly, if people have already been baptized in another church, the United Church recognizes their baptism and welcomes them as Christians.



This morning we will participate as a community of faith in the baptism of Blake Elizabeth Nelson, daughter of Devon and Cleve Nelson, and granddaughter of Gail Sokalski and Yogi Feilum, and Carson Michael Irving Berger, son of Brittany and Jeff Berger. Blake’s Godparents are Leah Feilum and Connor Nelson; Carson’s Godparents are Cameron Sokalski and Wesley Berger. Please join us following worship in the Friendship Room to meet our newest church members—and to enjoy some coffee, conversation and baptismal cake. Welcome to the body of Christ, darling Blake and Carson!



Prayer, silence, candlelight, beautiful music—these are the elements of our Taizé-style contemplative service at 4 pm today. Jocelyn Pritchard (piano), Boris Ulanowicz (violin), Peter Matthews (violin), Andrew Wilson (vocals) and Alexandra Scott (vocals) provide musical leadership. Everyone is welcome!


Plastic waste is now at such a volume that vast eddies of current-bound plastic trash spin endlessly in the world’s major oceans. This represents a great risk to marine life, killing birds and fish which mistake our garbage for food. In an effort to reduce unnecessary use of plastic, five years ago the Board at St. Andrew’s passed a  policy banning the use of bottled water and requiring a commitment to zero waste recycling by all groups using our space at the church.


The Green Initiative team at St. Andrew’s purchased 100 stainless steel Swell water bottles in time for Earth Day celebrations on April 22. You can do your part to reduce the use of plastic and advocate for zero waste by purchasing a water bottle from Green Initiative Coordinator, Natalie Topnik, on Sunday mornings or from the church office weekdays. Cost: $20. Style: choice of blue matte finish or silver.



Our 12th Annual Teddy Bear Picnic at St. Andrew’s Park is just over a month away! Beth Eakin has been  working tirelessly since January coordinating the event. This year’s Teddy Bear Picnic features Music with Marnie, face-painting by Looking Glass face painters, Jump for Joy bouncy castle, clowns Dilly & Donna—and the ever- popular Teddy Bear Clinic with Dr. Jeannie; Teddy Bear cookie decorating with the Sokalski family (to be confirmed); storytelling by North Vancouver Public Library staff; arts and crafts; and much more! We will need all volunteer hands on deck on Saturday, June 17. Can you help? Beth and Megan, this year’s summer student, will be recruiting volunteers soon. We hope you will say “yes!”



There is truth to the adage, “When one door closes, another door opens.” Last year’s summer student Courtney Whittred planned to return to St. Andrew’s this summer but her limited availability made it impossible. We are excited to welcome Megan Wolrich to St. Andrew’s, beginning Tuesday. Megan enters year three at UBCO in September. An honours graduate from Argyle Secondary School in North Vancouver, Megan is a dancer, a musician, a member of Lynn Valley United Church, and an athlete who teaches multiple sports to children in her spare time. Megan will join Beth this summer offering children’s church at St. Andrew’s Park in July and August and will assume a host of ministry responsibilities at St. Andrew’s. Welcome Megan!



A big thank you to Pam Mitchell and Rose Jones for digging up the old flower garden at the side of the church and replanting with mostly perennials! There remains more work to be done at the front of the church and at the side adjacent to the townhomes on 10th. Would you like to be part of a gardening team? Please contact Rev. Judith if you can spare a few hours in June to help cull the remaining overgrown flower gardens and beautify our church property.



… Mollie Hodson, recovering from a hip injury at Lions Gate Hospital;

… Peggy Horne, regaining strength at home following a stay in hospital;

… Joyce Brown, recovering at Lynn Valley Care Centre from a broken ankle;

… Barbara Matiru, awaiting surgery at Lions Gate Hospital;

… Etta Smith, struggling to find peace and comfort with a palliative cancer diagnosis;

… Carol Norwood’s new grandson, Brek, born this week with a small hole in his heart;

… Gordon Stewart, weathering health problems with grace; lovingly cared for by his wife, Donna;

… Evelyn Ferris, suffering from sciatica;

… other members of our extended community of faith who need healing prayers.



Bless to us O God the doors we open, the thresholds we cross, the roads that lie before us. Go with us as we go, and welcome us home.  —Kate Mcllhagga

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