Thoughts & Updates

News, perspectives and updates from Grace Episcopal Church

Red Barn Rescue Collection

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Many thanks to all who contributed to our annual collection for Red Barn Rescue, a no-kill dog shelter in Clayton. We raised $91 through the raffle, won by the Rev. Dr. Cathy Deats, who gave the $20 Petco gift card to Red Barn, for a total of $111. Many also gave dog food and other items for the dogs who have been rescued from kill shelters. We do this every year in honor of St. Francis, whose holy day is October 4th, and in thanksgiving for the gift of our pets and all of God's beautiful creation! 
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Fall Cookout and Blessing of the Animals

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We had a great fall cookout and blessing of the animals in honor of St. Francis! Thanks to everyone who attended, brought food, cooked and got donations! It was one of our best ever!
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Community Emergency Response Team

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A great Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) training at Grace! Thanks to Samantha and Jay, who led the training! Members of the church and the community participated increasing preparedness!
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Cookout

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We had a great end-of-school cookout! Thanks to all who came, contributed and helped with the event!
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Youth Sunday

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We give thanks for all of our young people who are important members of our congregation!
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First Sunday in Lent aka PJ Sunday

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"What's worship like in your church?" It's reverent, traditional and playful! The pics from our traditional service on the First Sunday in Lent, a.k.a. Time Change Sunday, March 10, 2019, will show you! Since we set our clocks ahead an hour, kids of all ages were invited to wear their pjs! Yes, you'll see some children and adults in their pajamas!
 
That's just one of the playful aspects of our congregation. We also have a bounce house! After the service, children jump to their hearts content, while adults enjoy coffee hour. We hope the children will have fun and want to come to church. 
 
Preschool and elementary school children have their own video based class/prayer time for part of the service. Parents worship in peace while their children learn, craft, sing and pray at their level.
 
This service is traditional, too.  The people leading worship wear robes. We have a pipe organ, violinist, choir and beautiful hymns that have been sung for centuries by faithful followers of Jesus. Our biblically based service traces its roots to the earliest known. At its heart is communion, which we have every Sunday.
 
Another important part of our worship is community. Each Sunday, people celebrating a birthday or anniversary come forward for a prayer and blessing. People enthusiastically greet one another with the peace of Christ, too.
 
Our growing congregation currently meets in a rented, metal building. Sometimes this puts off people used to a traditional church structure. Jesus, of course, was born in a stable. As the beauty, power and love of God transformed that humble space, they have transformed this one's interior into a beautiful place to worship God.
 
John Gibson
Pastor
 
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Burning Palms for Ash Wednesday

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On the last Sunday before the beginning of Lent, we burned the palms from last year's Palm Sunday to make ashes for the imposition of ashes on Ash Wednesday. The ashes are sign of our mortality and complete dependence on God. This moving ceremony tied last year's celebration of Jesus' entry into Jerusalem with our preparation for and observance of Lent, a season of spiritual renewal before the celebration of Jesus' resurrection on Easter Day.
 
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Candlelight Christmas Eve Service

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A beautiful service to celebrate the birth of Jesus! Many thanks to all those who served and attended to make it such a wonderful experience!
 
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Decorating for Christmas

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Many thank to everyone who helped decorate for Christmas and to all those who bought poinsettias! The church looked beautiful!!
 
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Emilea and Bryson's Baptism

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Congratulations to Emilea and Bryson who were baptized Sunday December 23rd. We're excited not only that they became followers of Jesus but also that their parents Anna-Kate and Patrick became members when Bishop Lee visited on December 2nd. We're thrilled the Millers are at Grace!
 
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Sunday July 1, 2018

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Another great Sunday at GEC!  
 
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Fiftieth Anniversary Renewal of Wedding Vows

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A great celebration of 50 years of marriage!  Paula and Don renewed their wedding vows during the service, today!
 
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Farmworker Sunday

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We had a great Sunday!  Thanks to Kate Walker, who spoke on behalf of the Episcopal Farmworker Ministry, to all those who donated clothing and other things for our brothers and sisters in the fields and to Fr. Frank, who took these photos! 
 
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Pentecost 2018

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We had a great celebration of Pentecost, the day the Holy Spirit came upon the disciples in Jerusalem, our graduating High School Seniors and our youth!  The choir from El Buen Pastor (the Good Shepherd) joined us for the service parts of which were in English, Spanish, French and Spanish.  Our altar guild and friends did a great job decorating the church for the great day!  Thank you to everyone who made it such an exciting celebration!
 
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Easter Sunday

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 We had a great celebration of Jesus' resurection!  Thanks to everyone who did a fantastic job decorating, serving, singing, playing and attending our worship, bringing food for and coordinating the brunch, putting on the Easter egg hunt and cleaning up!  It was a great morning!
 
 
 
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ASP 2017

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Sierra, Alex, Logan and Christine joined the St. Paul's, Cary, Appalachia Service Project to make homes warmer, safer and drier in Avery County, North Carolina this summer.  They made a difference and had a great time!  Check out all the pics from their week!

 

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Bishop Anne's Visit

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We had a joyful celebration with Bishop Anne, welcoming new members, giving thanks for fathers and rejoicing over the new organ.

 

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Comfort Wrap for Sierra

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One of the great gec traditions is giving a comfort wrap to graduating seniors and to young people moving away.  Becky presents the wrap on behalf of the women of the church who say a prayer and tight knots.  The wrap is a tangible reminder of God's and the congregation's love for them and that our prayers are with them.  The wrap has meant so much that some young people sleep with it when they first go away.  Becky presented this wrap to Sierra who is graduating from High School and going to Western Carolina University in August.  Congratulations to Sierra, and Thanks, Becky and the women of the church for such a moving and meaningful tradition!

 

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Youth Sunday

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The young people are not only important for the future but for the present!  We had a great service Sunday to celebrate them.

 

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Cookout May 2017

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Everyone had a great time at our end of the school year cookout with the girls, parents and leaders of one of the Girl Scout troops that meets at GEC.

 

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