Keeping Connected April 26, 2024



April 27, 2024

5:00 PM - The Fifth Saturday of Easter

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April 28, 2024

8:00 AM - The Fifth Sunday of Easter

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10:00 AM - The Fifth Sunday of Easter

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Connect Virtually

We will continue using our new live streaming equipment. You may access our Sunday morning worship service via our YouTube Channel and our Facebook page.

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Rector's Reflection

Dear Ones of Christ Church,


When Alex and I first moved into our current home, there was a corner of the yard that was completely overgrown, above and below, with invasive vines… bittersweet, wisteria, ivy. It took me an entire summer to chop through and clear all of these vines, and under them was a beautiful lilac tree… I say tree rather than bush or shrub because the lilac itself was and is taller than I am, and very old. Even as it was overgrown with vines, it still bloomed, and now much more so since it has been freed and since I have been able to prune it. But the vines are persistent, and every year, I find myself on a ladder cutting back the bittersweet coming over and through my neighbor’s fence, or crouching down and pulling out armfuls of English ivy, in that same overgrowing corner.


At the same time, in this Earth day week, I acknowledge that the lilac itself, while beautiful, is also a non-native, and in some cases invasive, species of plant. Last year Alex and I began planting native plant species in our yard, not rejecting the non-native species that are already there, but adding to them, with bee balm, cone flowers, and milkweed, and providing habitat and nourishment for caterpillars, pollinating bees, butterflies, moths, and birds. This year, we can’t wait to go to our local native plant nursery to add even more diversity to our small patch of yard.


This week, in our Sunday gospel reading (John 15:1-8), we will hear Jesus call himself the vine, God the vinegrower, and us the branches. In this Earth day week, in this time when we may be feeling grief, guilt, even despair and fear around the changes in our climate and environment, what hope or challenge does this image carry for you? What kind of vine is Jesus? How are we called to be as his branches? How is God pruning and shaping this vine?


With Eastertide peace, from the garden,

Melissa +

Adventures In Learning

This month we start our third Love First unit: Love God. Please see the April and May schedule below:


Church School Schedule

April: Love First - Love God

28 Love God 3/Prepared Communion 10:30 AM


5 Prepared Communion Service and Celebration (No regular Church School).

12 Love God 4 - Pentecost activity

19 Love God 5 - Pentecost

26 Memorial Day Weekend - No Church School

Join Our Church School Team!

We warmly welcome adults to become part of our Church School program! Alongside our dedicated teachers, we are in search of adults to partner with them, ensuring there are always two adults present in every class. Additionally, we need individuals who are willing to step in as substitutes when teachers are unavailable.


No prior experience is necessary as we provide all the information and materials needed for a fulfilling experience. Your enthusiasm and willingness to contribute are what truly matter!


If you're interested in making a meaningful difference in the lives of our children, please reach out to Donna Eby at and for more information or to volunteer. Together, let's create a nurturing environment where our children can grow in faith and understanding. Thank you for considering this opportunity to serve!


Last week we received in over $4499. When giving online, be sure to change the 'Fund' to 'Pledges' so your contribution goes toward your pledge. 

Thank you for your loving support of Christ Church.

Evening Woman

Evening Women will be held on May 1 at 71 Degrees West at 5 PM. The cost is $30 CASH. You will receive a salad and a choice of chicken parm or fish or steak tips. All drinks and dessert are on your own. Please RSVP to Donna Lawrence at or 508-243-2293 by April 30.  

The 2024 Bishops’ Annual Appeal

Next week is our “Ingathering Weekend” for the 2024 Bishops’ Annual Appeal.

Please place your gift in the Offering plate on “Ingathering Weekend,” May 4th and 5th. You may also mail it back directly to the diocesan office or donate online at The appeal newsletter and donation envelope are available at each entrance to the church or by contacting the parish office. Thank you for your generous support.

Pentecost Readers

As has been our tradition, we have the Gospel read in may languages on Pentecost. Please let us know if you are able to read in a different language(s) for any service(s) on the weekend of May 18/19. Contact Connie at or 508.746.3805.

Celebration of a New Ministry

All are invited to the Celebration of a New Ministry for Christ Church Parish and our new Rector, The Rev. Melissa Howell. Thursday, May 2, 2024 at 7 PM. The Rt. Rev. Carol Gallagher presiding. A reception will follow in our Parish Hall. Clergy: white stoles.

Diocesan Election

A Note From Your Delegates to Convention - The election for our next Diocesan Bishop is fast approaching. If you have any questions or any thoughts you would like to share, one of your delegates will be available after each service this weekend. Robb Pflock –, Louise Woodruff -, Deborah Dines -

Notes from the Vestry meeting of April 10, 2024


Please note that ALL vestry meeting minutes are posted on the bulletin board outside our parish office following their approval at the subsequent vestry meeting.


Rector’s report:

  • Deborah Dines accepted the call, and was appointed as an alternate delegate to diocesan convention.
  • Nominations for a vestry one-year term were discussed, and Rev Melissa will reach out to those nominated.
  • Vestry received & reviewed copies of The draft Policy for Protection of Children and Youth in Christ Church Parish and the draft Policy for the Protection of Vulnerable Adults in Christ Church Parish. Specific language & details pertinent to implementation will be discussed before next vestry meeting, with a goal of voting to adopt the policies at the May 8th meeting. The parish will then work to be in compliance with the policies by the end of 2024.
  • The upcoming Vestry Retreat is April 26, 6-8pm and April 27, 8:30am-3:30pm.

Junior Warden’s report:

  • Bathroom door handles have been replaced
  • Food Pantry ramp improvement project details were discussed
  • A complete parking assessment is a priority summer project, and all issues with parking need to be addressed – more spaces, designated spaces for those with mobility concerns, schedule conflicts.

Treasurer’s report: 

  • Finances through the month of March are in good shape. 

April 9, 2024 was the first full day of solar production on the Hall House. The meter still needs to be installed on the parish hall.

The Thrift Shoppe 1st quarter net proceeds will be donated to Christ Church food pantry. 

The Food Pantry reports that they are having increasing problems with connecting with clients, and a solution they have recently implemented is texting with clients in order to overcome language barriers and improve communication. Vestry discussed a possible addition of a phone line.

The Men’s Group will host a brunch on 4/14 for the celebration of Elijah’s music ministry. 


The next regular vestry meeting will be held on Wednesday, May 8th at 6:30pm in the Hospitality room.  

Christ Church Thrift Shoppe

Happy 80th Birthday to parishioner Jack Willett! 

In honor of Jack, family and friends celebrated by gifting the Thrift Shoppe and Food Pantry ministries cash donations and an assortment of household and food items that will greatly benefit our community. We are grateful for Jack and to those who celebrated his special day by helping those in need.

Shoppe Hours

Thursday and Friday 10-4

Saturday 10-2

Christ Church Food Pantry

This week we are low on:

Canned peaches and fruit cocktail (mixed fruit)

Pork and beans

Canned corn

Ramen noodles

Chef Boyardee

All are welcome to the Christ Church Food Pantry! 

We are open by appointment: 

Tuesday 4:00-5:15

Thursday 12:00-1:15 and 4:00-5:15 

Saturday 10:00-11:15.

Call the pantry message line: 508-746-4959, ext 6, BY 1 PM THE DAY BEFORE YOU WISH TO PICK UP YOUR ORDER. Our volunteers check messages and return your call from their homes to ask you what you need.

Leave a message if you wish to donate non-perishable food and household items, or you may leave your donations under the mailboxes outside the office or in the front entrance to the sanctuary. Squirrels like to get into any bags left on the porch of the food pantry!


If you wish to volunteer, contact Eileen Paris at

For more information, please contact Barbara Wojtklewicz at 617-291-4634, or by email at

Pastoral Care

For any pastoral care needs of Christ Church, please call Robin Nielsen (774-454-2776) or email ~ A home visit, a home visit with holy communion or a phone call can be arranged. Although a small group, our Pastoral Care Ministry team meets monthly in confidence.

For any pastoral emergencies, please call Rev. Melissa Howell 508-746-4959 ext 4, and follow the instructions in her voice message.

Diocesan News

Final slate with additional nominee by petition announced:

Final slate (from left): Brendan J. Barnicle; Edwin D. Johnson; Jean Baptiste Ntagengwa; Gideon L. K. Pollach; Julia E. Whitworth

April 19, 2024

The Standing Committee of the Episcopal Diocese of Massachusetts is pleased to announce that, having added one additional nominee from the petition process, it has approved a final slate of nominees for election as the 17th bishop diocesan of the Diocese of Massachusetts. They are:

• The Rev. Dr. Brendan J. Barnicle,

Rector, St. Francis of Assisi Church, Wilsonville, OR

• The Rev. Edwin D. Johnson,

Director of Organizing, Episcopal City Mission, Boston, MA

• The Rev. Canon Jean Baptiste Ntagengwa, Th.D.,

Canon for Immigration and Multicultural Ministries, Diocese of Massachusetts

• The Very Rev. Gideon L. K. Pollach,

Rector, St. John's Church, Cold Spring Harbor, NY

• The Rev. Julia E. Whitworth,

Rector, Trinity Church, Indianapolis, IN

More information about each nominee can be found at

Members of the diocese will have the opportunity to meet the nominees in a series of Meet-and-Greets that will take place May 7-11. Information about the schedule and locations of the Meet-and-Greets is available at

The election will take place on Saturday, May 18 at Trinity Church in Boston. All canonically resident clergy of the diocese and lay delegates (two elected from each of the diocese’s parishes and missions) vote separately as “orders”; a majority of votes on the same ballot from both the clergy and lay orders is required for election. Information about the electing convention is available at

Please keep the nominees, the Nominating Committee, the Transition Committee and the people of our diocese in your prayers as we move into this next phase in the discernment of our 17th bishop.

The Rev. Dr. Karen Coleman, President, Standing Committee

Grace Knowles, Vice President, Standing Committee

William Boyce, Co-Chair, Bishop Nominating Committee

The Rev. Diane Wong, Co-Chair, Bishop Nominating Committee

Linda Ouellette, Co-Chair, Bishop Nominating Committee

Visit for more information and updates.

Community News

The Episcopal Diocese of Massachusetts Click Here for the April FYI

The Episcopal Diocese of Massachusetts Diocesan News

We want to keep you in the loop regarding the happenings at Christ Church. Please send your announcements for the weekly bulletin and Keeping Connected, to the office by 12 Noon on Wednesday. They should include date, time, place, description of event, contact information and should be written exactly the way you want them to appear.

The Church Office will be closed on Wednesday May 1st after 12:00 PM

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