Weekly Newsletter | November 9, 2021
Worship and Devotions
Sunday Morning Worship
We will continue to gather in person each Sunday at 8:30, 9:45, and 11:00 a.m. in our sanctuary. 

Also, please remember that we will continue to offer an online worship service every Sunday at 10 a.m. As in the past, this will be a livestreamed on our Facebook page and also available on our St. Mark's website.

Evening Prayer every Wednesday at 7:30 p.m. in the Parish Commons. This weekly in person evening service includes contemplative music and readings along with candlelight prayer around the cross. We will wear masks and observe the same COVID safety guidelines that we use on Sunday morning.

Share prayer requests with us by sending them to prayers@smlutheran.org. If you would like us to include them in the Prayers of the Church during Sunday worship, please make note of that. 
The Bells of St. Mark's Ring Out the Sounds of the Gospel!
Hello. My name is Sean Peterson and I'm a member of the Stewardship Committee for St. Mark's. One of the many fun things that the stewardship committee is doing right now is getting to know St. Mark's constituents better. Whether your an employee, or Wednesday night service attendee or online observer, we are getting to know all of you. With that being said, we would like to bring attention to individuals who are making a great contributions to the church. This month the Bells of St. Marks is ripe for an introduction!

If you were able to attend Reformation Sunday on October 31, you would have heard the Bells of St. Mark's. The Bells of St. Mark's have been around for many years, and currently is under the direction of Karen Moats! Karen started ringing with the bell choir in 2012 and became the director in 2015. Besides playing Reformation Sunday they play services at least once a month and for festivals such as Christmas, Easter, and more.  

"I love the bells for many reasons," said Karen. "A bell choir is the epitome of teamwork because there is only one person on each bell. I love the opportunity to teach ringers the many techniques for ringing bells, and the opportunity to create community around music. Ringing a bell, considering it an extension of my arm, creates amazing vibrations that flow to the listeners ear. It is always my greatest honor to toll the bells on All Saints Sunday. It is a deeply moving experience and is a beautifully meaningful part of that worship service."

Currently there are 12 regular ringers and two subs in the bell choir. Members are Sharon Bebop, Steve Cox, Rebekah Doll, Peggy Ellingson, Barb Haueisen, Sally Hyde, Kathleen Murray, Melanie Palmer, Carolyn Petersen, John Rodin, Tarrie Rychlinski, Elizabeth Skarshaug, Vonnie Tallon, and Betty Zaloudek-Moore. These ringers participate through a nine month season from September through May with weekly rehearsals and worship presentations. When the bells are scheduled to play in worship they attend all three services. All together throughout the season they accumulate over 850 hours worth of work and dedication.  

Karen mentions that she, "loves to create a variety of repertoires for the ringers and listeners to experience. The techniques create such unique sounds. It is fun to prepare pieces with layers of sound texture. From percussive sounds with mallets and plucks, to haunting sounds of swings and vibrato. Playing hymn based pieces is always solid, resulting in good feelings all around."

New members are always welcome as there are plenty of bells to ring. If you are interested please contact Karen at Kmoats@harbornet.com. Thank you Bells of St. Marks for bringing your musical gifts of sound to the church halls. We all appreciate your current and past works!
Chase the Chill
It's time to Chase the Chill! The weather is turning cold and damp which means many people on the streets and in shelters are in need of something warm and cozy. If you like to knit or crochet please join us in making scarves and hats to distribute this year to agencies who help those in need. There is a basket on the shelves outside the office for your finished projects. If you have questions, please talk with Eleanor Sherry on Sunday mornings or call the church office Monday-Friday mornings at 253-752-4966. Thank you!
Children, Youth, and Family Faith Formation
Sunday AM classes for children 3 years old to 12th grade are in person November 14 and 21 9:45-10:45 a.m. Preschool-4th grade students meet in the lower Preschool/CFC wing of the building; 5/6th grade in the Youth Room; 7/8th grade in the Parish Commons; 9-12th grade in the Fireside Room. 

Zoom Options: 
  • 1-4th grade 9-9:30am with Hollye(the weeks we have in person class). Contact Hollye for the Zoom link. 
  • 5/6th and 7/8th grade students join in over zoom live with your class Contact Ingelaurie for the Zoom link. 
Preparing for Advent and Christmas:
Advent Faith in the Home Bags--they are back- fun Advent activities for the whole family. All in-person Sunday School families will receive a bag on November 21. If you aren't able to gather in person yet please sign up here for your Advent bag. Bags will be available on Sunday, November 21, through a Drive Thru Event between 12-1p.m. in the church parking lot. 

November 28: Cross-Generational Advent Wreath making is back!  Join us between 9:45-11:30 a.m. in the Parish Commons, students make sure you bring an adult with you. Something for the whole family.

December 24: 4 p.m. Christmas Eve Family Worship--students-children and youth are invited to help lead this virtual service. Please sign up here if your student wants to be one of the storytellers for this service--this service will be pre-recorded and then shown online at 4 p.m. on Christmas Eve. 

It is not too late to sign up to attend the 2022 ELCA Youth Gathering in Minneapolis, MN this summer (July 24-28, with a couple travel dates added on)- If you are a youth grades 8-12 please check out the bulletin board near the Welcome Center in the Narthex for registration materials or see the attached. Questions? Please contact Ingelaurie Lisher.

Youth grades 4-7(entering fall 2022) information and dates for camp at Flathead coming soon.

For youth grades 6-12:
Thursday Nights at St. Mark's: 
  • 5:30-6:30 p.m. Youth Group--1st and 3rd Thursday of each month. Remaining dates for 2021: November 18 and December 2(we will have a pizza party). 
  • 6:30-7:30 p.m. Youth Choir--Weekly with Cooper--no meeting Nov. 25
  • 7:30-8:30 p.m. Youth Marimbas--Weekly with Jeff--no meeting Nov. 25

The Well (High School Youth) meets the 1st and 3rd Sunday of each month at Bruce and Ingelaurie's outdoor patio--from 6:30-7:3 p.m.--remaining 2021 dates: Nov. 21 and Dec. 5. Dress for the weather. 

High School Fall Baking Event-Wednesday, November 24 10-noon. Sign up here by Sunday, November 21 at the latest. There is an in person and Zoom option. 
Adult Faith Formation 

Wednesday Noon Bible study: Join us for Bible study with the pastor! On Wednesday at noon on we will meet. This fall, we will offer a hybrid Bible study. With Covid safety in mind, we invite you to wear a mask and to eat before Bible study (no food will be served). You are invited to join in person in the Fireside room, or join remotely via this Zoom link. For questions, please email Pastor Hallie. 

Sunday forums at 10 a.m. in the parish classroom:
On Sunday, November 14, at 10 a.m., we invite you to join Ray Shjerven for an informative and dynamic presentation on Lutheran Disaster Response (LDR). The forum will include a short synopsis of how LDR works at the local, Synodical, Regional, National, and International level for incidents. The forum will also include information on how you can prepare yourself, your family, and the broader community to respond to disasters, and how the community of St. Mark's can support responses to disasters close to home or far away.

November 21, "To be Takei" with Dr. Michelle Marshmann
Good films, like good books, draw us into stories. Have you ever watched a film that changed or challenged your perspective on life? And then wanted to talk about it with friends? Join us as we discuss the film "To be Takei," a documentary on Star Trek icon, LGBTA activist, and guest Howard Stern announcer, George Takei. We invite you to watch the film on your own and explore the movie guide in our Google drive.

Other faith formation events:

At 1 p.m. on Sunday, November 14, we invite you to join us in person at St. Mark’s for a virtual book conversation with John Philip Newell about his new book “Sacred Earth, Sacred Soul: Wisdom for Reawakening to What Our Souls Know and Healing the World.” Rev. Dave Brown (Blues Vespers) and Rev. Dave Wright (University of Puget Sound) will be joining Pastor Hallie in-person for a Zoom conversation with John Philip Newell.
Following the book event, you are invited to a series of conversations on November 16th, November 23rd, and November 30 at Peaks and Pints, 7-8:30 p.m.! Please email Pastor Hallie with any questions.

The University of Puget Sound will host Imam Abdullah Antepli, Associate Professor of Practice at Duke University Sanford School of Public Policy for a lecture entitled, “Saving Religion from its Extremes: A Muslim Perspective.”
For more information and tickets, please click here.
Wednesday Morning Bible Study
The Wednesday 9:30 a.m. Bible study has resumed in the Fireside room with our study of Proverbs-God’s wisdom for applying to our daily experiences and challenges. All are welcome to arrive at 9:15 for coffee and visiting. We encourage sharing insights, questions, and concerns. Join us! For information, contact Linda Durant (253) 363-8202, hotdouug@centurylink.net. Masks will be worn.
Fully Alive Bible Study
Fully Alive Bible Study meets Tuesdays at 5:15 p.m. We will meet in the Fireside Room and study: Elohim: God the Creator, Yahweh Yireh: God the Provider, El Roi: The God who sees ME. These are just a few of the names of God. In our English Bible, the Supreme Being is called "God' or "LORD'. However, the original translations in Hebrew and Greek have a rich, full variety of names for God. We learn these names through different Biblical stories, and as we study them, we begin to experience the breadth of God's character. Join us as we explore the characteristics of God. For more information please contact Sherry Maiura 253-303-1681.
Advent Devotional and Study
Advent is coming!  November 28 is the first Sunday of Advent!
Using the Living Well Advent devotional we will be exploring the theme “Practicing patience with all your heart, soul, strength and mind." Each day during Advent there will be a daily reading with reflection questions from various perspectives. Who couldn’t use a little help with practicing patience these days? You are invited to be part of a book study group during Advent to discuss the content and questions on Wednesday nights beginning December 1 at 6:15 p.m. in the Parish Commons Classroom. An online option will also be available through Zoom.

Sign up for the Advent book study and devotional Sunday, November 14 and 21 in the Narthex. Or you can email sigi.helgeson@smlutheran.org to reserve your copy. The devotional books are free to all. 
Congregational Care
Caregiver support group meets this Friday, November 12, at 10:30 a.m. in the Fireside room or on Zoom.

Grief support group meets Friday, November 19, at 11:00 a.m. in the Fireside room or on Zoom.

If you would like to join a support group to walk with you during a season or would like to be connected with a care minister, contact Pastor Sigi either by phone at the church office or email.
Peace and Justice
LATEST UPDATE on Refugee Needs
THANK YOU to everyone who has contributed furniture, household items, and money to our refugee resettlement efforts! The shipping container in our parking lot now holds more than enough to get a family started. We are now focusing on the financial support which will allow us to purchase additional items once we know more about the family and assist them with basic needs as they settle in to our community.

To support our these efforts financially, you may write a check to St. Mark’s with the note “refugee support” on it and mail it or bring it to church. You may also go to smlutheran.org, select “Give”, then ONLINE GIVING, then “refugee support”. Thank you! Questions? Contact Paula Friedmann pfzebra@me.com or John Avery johnavery@gmail.com.
Autumn “Starter Kits” for Youth Host Home program
We are halfway there!
THANKS TO YOUR EFFORTS, Roger and I delivered the first 3 Starter Kits to Mark, Janelle and Apa of the YHH Program/Shared Housing Services! They were very excited to receive our gifts, especially because they had an immediate need for a young woman who had her move-in the day before! Perfect!

We are more than halfway there!  Maybe you can donate detergent, hand sanitizer or non-perishable snack items (or more). Check out the missing items for the last 3 Starter Kits: follow this link to sign up. Purchase your items, label them “YHH Starter Kit” and place them in or in front of the SHS/YHH Starter Kit bin at church on Sunday or during office hours during the week.  If you would prefer to make a monetary donation, (much appreciated) write your check to St. Mark’s and clearly note in the memo area “YHH Starter Kits”. If you have questions, contact Roz Lueck-Mammen at RozLM28@gmail.com.

Mark Merrill, director of SHS, asked me to share the following success story with all of you.

Why We Do What We Do -
TP came into the Youth Host home program after the ACT Outreach Team came across her living on the streets. She had left her parents’ home at 17 years old due to extreme family drug use in the home. TP is an honor student at Pierce College completing the running start program. Her ambitions are to complete her AA Degree through running start and work towards a BA Degree in Psychology. She wants to be a therapist when she completes school. She was matched with one of the home providers during the summer and quickly gained a part-time job and is now working and continuing school online in the running start program. She is very excited to keep moving forward on her goals and stated she feels secure in her new host home. – TP 2020/2021  ***Six-month Update: TP graduated high school and the Running Start program 06/2021, and she has been accepted into University of Washington –Tacoma for the fall quarter. 
Worship Volunteers Needed
Would you like to volunteer to be a part of worship services as a greeter, usher, lector, or communion assistant? We need you and would love to include you in this important ministry. Call the office at 253-752-4966, email linda.mckeller@smlutheran.org, or drop by the office any morning from 8:30-12:30 to sign up to be involved in the worship service of your choice. Thanks!
Altar Flowers
Would you like to donate flowers for the altar in honor or memory of a person, event, or special occasion? You can sign up on the flower chart calendar on the board outside the office door. Questions? 253-752-4966. Thank you!
St. Mark's Lutheran Church by The Narrows