Parish profile for Partnership Vicar
St Barnabas Episcopal church 546 Hyland Park Drive Glenwood Springs, Colorado 81601
- Describe a moment in your worship community’s recent ministry which you recognize as one of success and fulfillment.
The last two months St. Barnabas has rarely had a priest to celebrate the liturgy. One of our parishioners has graciously and effectively lead our congregation in morning prayer. His commitment to service our church has provided stability plus spiritual support.
- Describe your liturgical style and practice. If you have more than one, describe them all.
Our parishioners prefer and practice a traditional liturgical style using the Book of Common Prayer as its framework for worship. In the past, 2 services each Sunday were offered. A 9:45 service which uses Rite 2 with choir and music. Presently it is the only service celebrated. An 8:00 service which used Rite 1 with no music was discontinued for the lack of an officiant. Parishioners appreciate, love and expect beautiful music at the 9:45 service. The Hymnal 1982 and Renew are used by all, a choir performs every Sunday, plus we have several parishioners who share their musical talents on flute and piano. Our congregation feels it enhances and edifies the spiritual experience of worship.
- How do you practice incorporating others in ministry?
Engaging all parishioners in ministry at St. Barnabas has been a challenge. There are a few regular people who graciously commit to our music program that offers a choir and instrumental solos, altar guild, chalice, building and grounds, scriptural reading, vestry, coffee hour, greeting, prayer chain, ushering and counting of Sunday offerings. Information and encouragement are used to engage everyone to share their special gifts for the betterment of our church and our surrounding community. These efforts have yielded small results.
- As a worshipping community, how do you care for your spiritual, emotional and physical well being?
Our Sunday worship service is the foundation for communal support. Other venues include the following: *An active prayer chain *Individual prayers requested at each Sunday service *Centering prayer offered Wednesday afternoons *Yoga Eucharist provided Tuesday evenings in our church loft *A Health ministry provided by one of our parishioners for all our congregation *A coffee hour complete with lunch and loving support of each other-this nourishes body and soul. *Pastoral care performed by one of our parishioners. *Rides to Sunday church, doctor’s appointments and shops are provided for those unable to drive *Meals are provided when needed.
The general consensus of our church community support is positive. Our parishioners have expressed their appreciation for the communal love, support, compassion fellowship, and inclusion that we share with each other.
- Describe your community’s involvement in the wider Church and/or region.
Our newest involvement in wider church participation has been the partnership creation of the 3 Episcopal churches in Garfield County. Our former St Barnabas priest was the lead in this arrangement which provided priest support for all three churches. Additionally, we honor our pledges to the North West Region and the Dioceses plus monetary support to SAMS. Each year we send delegates to Diocesan Convention and report to our congregation the information gleaned from these meetings.
- How do you engage in pastoral care beyond your worshipping community?
When Valley View Hospital’s Early Learning center (ELC) for their employee’s pre-school children was closed because of faulty construction, they had no other facility in which to continue their program. St Barnabas offered ELS space in its downstairs parish hall. The center has flourished at this site for many years. On the first Sunday, our church plate offerings are donated to three different local charities. When needed, we provide meals for parishioners recovering from surgery. One of our members provides transportation to her friend for doctor appointments and grocery shopping. Another member visits people in car centers, hospitals and home, Rides to church on Sunday are offered for those who are unable to drive. Every Sunday and through our prayer chain we pray for each other, for friends, for family members, and for our community. Periodically, we provide food to Lift Up, a non profit organization that provides humanitarian assistance of food pantries, soup kitchens, holiday meals and affordable clothing. We also donate foot care products to the homeless at Feed My Sheep, a respite for homeless individuals. A new outreach supported by our church is Mountain Valley Project (MVP). This is a new initiative. In order to unite individual charitable groups into a coalition that will yield stronger monetary and political support. For the last 4 summers we have volunteered at a Vacation Bible Camp which included 5 local churches. Some of us taught, others of us provided snacks and lunches for the children and volunteers.
- Tell about a ministry you have initiated in the past five years. Who can be contacted for more information about this ministry?
Fit Feet, a foot car ministry, has its roots in a vacation Bible camp outreach endeavor. Martha Lindenberg wanted to engage the children in an outreach community project. Socks, wipes, nail clippers and foot warmers were collected and individually packaged and delivered to Geed My Sheep where they were enthusiastically received. This need and appreciation triggered a calling for Martha, hence the birth of Fit Feet. Since then she has organized foot care to the homeless three times a year. Martha Lindenberg, a member of St Barnabas Episcopal Church in Glenwood Springs, heads this ministry.
- How are you preparing yourself for the Church of the future?
Our primary preparation at this time is focused on a priest search process. We desire to have a priest who can help lead us into the future. Also having priest guidance would help provide consistency plus would have an energizing effect for our worship community. Attending regional formation meeting and the Diocesan Convention provide valuable information to help our church incorporate new initiative s for future endeavors. Additionally, we have just begun a process of implementing a Strategic Thinking plan in order to better effect our mission and vision.
- What is your practice of stewardship and how does it shape the life of your worshipping community?
Our practice is defined by a yearly pledge campaign at which time pledge cards along with an inspirational letter is mailed to each parishioner. Commiserate with that mailing is a weekly reminder by either the senior warden treasurer or priest. The first Sunday of each month, the loose plate offering is shared with 3 local charity organizations. Several years ago, a parishioner bequeathed us a Special Ministry Fund that can be used for unique outreach. This fund has helped local, national, and global organizations. Members can contribute to this fund and have it matched by its author. Ib addition to monitory giving, there are members who give generously of the time and talent in all facets of our church life.
- What is your worshipping community’s experience of conflict? And how have you addressed it:
The only memory of a recollected conflict happened when the Rt. Rev. Gene Robinson was elected bishop. Some of our church members were disturbed, confused, or intolerant of this election. In order to bring understanding and resolution to this issue, our presiding priest held sessions at coffee hour for all to attend. Questions, comments and concerns were discussed in a non- threatening atmosphere. Although a few could not resolve their differences so left the church, most members were able to ameliorate their doubts.
- What is your experience leading/addressing change in the church? When has it gone well? When has it gone poorly? And what did you learn?
Effecting change is generally difficult. Because our membership profile is very senior, there is a tendency for them to want to maintain the status quo. However, because St. Barnabas has experienced much flux in the last ten years (5 different priests) there is an awareness developing that if we maintain status quo we will not become a church of the future. This awareness has had its seeds in second Sunday discussions and conversations at coffee hour. At these sessions no topic or idea is taboo. Realistic questions about our church’s future are explored. Alternatives to the status quo are entertained. Concerns are addressed, opinions respected. These conversations have given us an opportunity to know and understand each other at a deeper level. The ideas emerging from these sessions has resulted in the implementation of s Strategic Thinking process in order to determine if we are living our mission and vision.
Provide words describing the gifts and skills essential for your future priest.
Pastoral Care; Parishioner Engagement; Weekly availability; Challenge addressing ASA of 38 (52 weekend services; 15 other services).
Names, title, and tenure of past 3 priests The Rev. E. Wendy Huber Rector 4years The Rev. Harrison heidel, Rector 3.5 years The Rev. Nina Stasser Rector 5 years.