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Message from the Senior Warden

Message from the Senior Warden

Many of you know that one of my favorite hobbies is stamping. I really enjoy making greeting cards; however, sometimes my creativity is not flowing as well as I think it should. So I go to classes held by my Stampin’ Up consultant in Forest Hill, MD. There I can make a dozen or so cards using the creativity of my consultant. The results are usually spectacular!

During the drive up Harford Road to Forest Hill, I pass a building near Fork Road that has a sign out front promoting various functions like dance or art classes, or just that the building is available for rental. Sometimes, though, they have a clever phrase to help entice people to participate in whatever they are offering. The latest message is, “Just like fingers you can count on us.”

In reflecting on this message as I continued my drive, I came to the conclusion that it could be re-worded to say, “Just like fingers you can count on God.” Haven’t you been told before that you can count on God? That God will always be with you? That God answers your prayers, even though the answer is sometimes, “No”?

We see God’s glory in everything we do. We especially feel God’s presence when we are troubled or facing difficulty. God is just like our best friends to be there whenever you need them. You know you can count on God to be there when you need him.

God has especially been with St. Thomas’ and Epiphany as we explore partnership. The STEP teams are coming up with some very interesting information about each other, and we are learning about what we want to keep and what we’re willing to let go. More importantly, we are learning about what our dreams can be. And we know we can count on God to help us face this process together and see us through to its still unknown conclusion.

Yes, just like fingers, we can count on.
God.

Blessings,
Diane Flayhart, Senior Warden

Message from Our Senior Warden

Back in the late 1960’s when St. Thomas’ moved from its former location on The Alameda in Baltimore City, our new location on Providence Road was not yet ready. So we held our services and Sunday School at what used to be known as St. Elizabeth’s School for Special Education on Argonne Drive. We used their multi-purpose room for our services, complete with basketball nets and bleachers, and we used their classrooms for our Sunday School. Talk about being flexible!

One of the other things we had to do was to find temporary “homes” for all of St. Thomas’ belongings so we wouldn’t have to pay storage fees. I know my family was the proud keeper of the St. Thomas’ china dishes in the upstairs storage closets in our home. It was fun knowing we could have a dinner party for 200 and have all the dishes to accommodate the event without having to dig into the paper plates.

In cleaning out one of our parishioner’s home, a discovery was made of some St. Thomas’ flatware. It’s silverplate with “St. T.” engraved on the handles, and while it’s not service for 200, we have 37 forks, 2 knives and 2 spoons. We’d like to offer those pieces to any St. Thomas’ members who would like a little piece of St. Thomas’ history. While the utensils don’t have any specific value, we would like to request a small donation for each item. If you’re interested in obtaining any of the utensils, please contact me, Diane Flayhart, at 410-426-4618. I’ll be happy to bring them to the church.

Just think … a little bit of St. Thomas’ history. Who wouldn’t want a piece of that?

Blessings,
Diane Flayhart, Senior Warden

Message from Our Senior Warden

While searching for a topic for this month’s message, the topic of kindness kept appearing in my everyday life. Church signs always have great messages. You know how it is when you’re driving up and down the road and various churches along the way put inspirational messages on their sign. This month, I kept seeing messages about kindness.

The first message read, “Kindness is the language the deaf can hear and the blind can see.” As I thought about this message, all I could think of was how true it was. When others can’t see but someone helps them navigate a path through a group of people, that is a language that they can feel but not see. Or if someone can write out directions for someone who can’t hear, that has to be so helpful to that person. That’s the language of kindness in action.

The second message read, “I serve God when I show kindness to others.” Sitting with my dad in his final days, my sister, Barbara, showed tremendous kindness to Dad to help him enter into peace with God. Dad was deeply troubled and life was not comfortable for him. We were in the process of moving him from Assisted Living to Long Term Care as his care needs exceeded the skills of the staff in Assisted Living. We knew the move was not one that Dad wanted to make, but we felt we had no choice based on his needs. But Dad had a choice, and he made it while kindness, and love, surrounded him.

So next time you have an opportunity to share kindness with someone, take that extra step to do so. It will be appreciated more than you’ll ever know.

Blessings,
Diane Flayhart, Senior Warden

Message from the Senior Warden

Some of you may know I am a member of a non-college affiliated International Sorority, Sigma Phi Gamma, and have been a member for 41 years. The sorority is based on friendship and service. It is structured with individual chapters which are regionally grouped into Provinces. The Provinces meet annually to discuss what happened in the previous year and make plans for the next year. My Province meets the 4th weekend in February. We also hold an annual convention of all members in June or July.

Sigma Phi Gamma will be celebrating its 100th anniversary in 2020, and our membership is concerned that there might not be many members around to celebrate. So among the topics of constant discussion at Province Meetings and the International Convention are recruitment and growth. Sound familiar?

At my recent Province Meeting, we were asked to write down how we became sorority members and what keeps us in Sigma Phi Gamma. It was a thought provoking exercise that could be applied to any organization, including St. Thomas’. How did you come to be a member of St. Thomas’? And why do you stay?

We also discussed what makes others appeal to you. Are you friendly? Do you offer assistance when asked, or even when you see assistance is needed, do you just jump in and help? Do you make suggestions and offer new ideas? Are you smiling? Are you welcoming? Or are you grumpy? Do you ignore strangers when they walk in the door? Do you hold back on ideas and suggestions? Are you constantly complaining instead of helping to do things better?

A positive, friendly person almost always appeals to someone as opposed to someone who is negative and non-welcoming. What kind of person are you? How do you portray St. Thomas’ to others? Let’s hope it’s the former, the positive and friendly person!

Blessings,
Diane Flayhart Senior Warden

Message from the Senior Warden

THANK YOU!

Two little words – “thank you” – but what an impact they can have on another person. Research shows that saying “thank you” is good for your health as well as your social relationships with other individuals. It promotes self-esteem, it boosts confidence, and it can actually lower your blood pressure! Saying “thank you” tells someone that they are appreciated, and how can that NOT make someone else feel better or improve your relationship with that person?

Too often we are caught up these days in the hustle and bustle of the holiday season, running here and there, shopping, wrapping, baking, planning, etc., all for just a few minutes of happiness. However, we need to slow down and express our gratitude to the people around us – our friends and loved ones, the cashier at the grocery store, the clerk in the mall, the person who holds a door open or helps us when our arms are full.

More importantly, when was the last time you thanked God? When did your prayerfully thank him for all he’s given you? God’s presence is constantly with us. He looks out for us and helps us in subtle ways that you might miss because you’re busy doing all the things on your To-Do list. Take a moment to spend time with God and thank him for all he’s done.

And thank YOU for participating in the Loose Change Challenge … every little bit counts!!

Blessings,
Diane Flayhart, Senior Warden