‘…you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses…to the end of the earth.” (Acts 1.8, ESV)
Right before the resurrected Jesus ascended to the “right hand of the Father” he promised his apostles that they would not be left alone. Soon, they were to experience the outpouring of the Holy Spirit and each were to embark on a mission that would literally change the course of history.
This outpouring of the Spirit both instilled powerful gifts for ministry and enhanced gifts still unused and undeveloped. Yet once those gifts were unleashed a powerful movement began among the people they encountered as they traveled. Today we look upon that day, the Feast of Pentecost—the day when the Holy Spirit birthed a people who shared their spiritual gifts with others—and we consider that day the birthday of the Church.
The birth of the Church coincides with the unleashing of people, empowered to use their own gifts and talents to proclaim the Good News of Jesus.
My leadership team and I have had much conversation with various leaders in our many ministries. One of the common themes is the difficulty of attracting new volunteers. Likewise, we have had conversations with those who are new to St. George. A common obstacle is the challenge of serving, especially among those with significant time commitments or younger children. Being scheduled on a recurring rotation monthly can be daunting when one is new to a ministry.
Obviously this presents quite the conundrum.
As we have pondered these conversations, it has become increasingly clear that we need to shift our thinking from volunteer recruitment to ministry training. This is important so that we can reclaim our identity as The Church—that is, the “unleashed people of God, empowered to use their spiritual gifts and talents to proclaim the Good News of Jesus.”
At St. George, you will find numerous opportunities for you and your loved ones to be people of action through our Summer of Service. Those opportunities range from backpack stuffing to helping during our Vacation Bible School (VBS). Additionally, with summer travel upon us we will have some openings in some of our Sunday morning ministries, most notably in our Greeter Ministry. Please look over all the opportunities that are available to you to see which one(s) grab your attention and then go and serve.
The other side of the coin is that I will be asking all of our ministry leaders to find appropriate, flexible opportunities for all St. George Community members, especially those new to serving, to sign up to serve in ministry here in a way that fits their schedule. If you are new to serving in the congregation or are considering serving, please know how much you and your gift of time and talent are appreciated. If you would like to participate in a simple, yet highly transformative, Sunday morning ministry come to one of the Greeters’ tables on either end of the worship space and parish hall. You could make a big change in someone’s life just by smiling and saying “Good morning!”
This coming Sunday, sign up sheets will be available in your bulletins for you to offer your time this summer and beyond. We are being called and empowered to be a people of ACTION. I invite you to answer that call from God and share how you can serve here at St. George, in the surrounding community and in the world. May God unleash us through the gift of the Holy Spirit and may we use our gifts to be people of Good News at all times!
 Please note that the Lector and Lay Eucharistic ministry is a bit more complicated in terms of getting on the schedule since these ministries are licensed by the Bishop’s Office. But their leaders are always eager to welcome, train and unleash new servants!
For our July Summer of Service, we will put together backpacks stuffed with school supplies for children at Larkspur and other schools. More information will be forthcoming, so stay tuned. For more information about Larkspur Elementary, click here.
Yesterday the St. George Youth Group enjoyed their LAST on campus Youth Group for the school year. The kids enjoyed some tacos, OJ, and sardines. No, not literally Sardines, but Sardines the game. Sardines is the opposite of hide and go seek. One person hides and everyone tries to find that them and if they do they hide with them. The last person to find the group is “it” for the next game. We had some kids hide in elevators, desks, and closets and other interesting places. Fun was had by all.
The kids then participated in a mini-service project where they put 4-8 quarters in a plastic bag and decorated a St. George Youth label with a scripture or encouraging message. These bags were then dropped of at red box movie machines, Sonic, pay telephones, and vending machines. The goal is to have all who find them to enjoy a free movie, soda, or a happy hour slush on us. We then discussed the importance of gifts and giving back from how God has abundantly given to us. Next week is our end of the year pool party and details will follow!
This summer at St. George we will be expanding our on-campus service opportunities! Each Sunday in summer, we will be holding a hands-on service opportunity between worship services at 9:45 AM in the Gathering Area. Summer will be full of travel and fun, but God’s work is never done! When you and your family are in San Antonio, we invite you to be a part of the Good News and to participate in our projects for Magdalena House, Larkspur Elementary, and West Avenue Compassion before and after you attend worship. Watch the eSpear for more details.
Bring your mother to church this Sunday for Mother’s Day. Whether you pick her up and bring her with a coffee in hand to worship or whether you carry her sweet memory in you heart, come and worship. Together we will celebrate motherhood and offer prayers for all mothers – expecting ones, new ones, recently empty-nested, moms who are now grandmothers and even those who have been like mothers to us.
I look forward to seeing you all on Sunday at St. George!
The St. George community had a blast while supporting the Chain of Love! “Down for the Count” played some Texas classics and fun Bluegrass music while the kids played in our gorgeous courtyard last Friday night. Thank you to all who came out to have some fun and support the Chain of Love!
The St. George Children’s Ministry is growing and we are in need of more members to join our Nursery staff. We routinely need substitutes to work on Sunday mornings, but we also need more people available for weekend and weeknight worship opportunities and special events.
At this time, we especially are in need of three people to work in our nursery as childcare for a new group forming on Sunday evenings from 5:00 – 7:00 PM. This group will meet every other Sunday beginning on May 1.
Applicants need to be age 16 or older, and must be willing to attend a Safeguarding God’s Children workshop. All applicants must also pass a background check. These positions can be paid hourly or be for volunteer service hours. Please email Haley Bankey at email@example.com in you are interested.