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A Letter from the Rector to our Families

4 September 2016


Dear Saint Ignatius Families,

We at Saint Ignatius are thrilled to begin a new year of programs for families and children this coming Sunday, September 11.

Personally, I am very happy to be back with you after being away last year. I am sorry my absence created a prolonged period of uncertainty. I am incredibly grateful, therefore, to those of you who assumed leadership for our family programs. I am especially indebted to Associate for Family Ministries Lucy Yates and our family ministry committee led by vestry member Meredith Strauss, along with Family Committee members Rachel McDermott, Katy Peterson, and Kristy Milkov. Together they worked with the churchwardens and other parents to ensure that our family programs continued.

Mass is celebrated three times on Sunday, with Low Mass at 8, Sung Mass with hymns at 9, and Procession and Solemn Mass with our professional choir at 11. Children are most welcome at all services, although many families choose to attend the 9 o’clock service. We provide childcare for children up to six years of age from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. For older children, we will be continuing to offer activities at the 9 o’clock mass in which they can participate, including serving at the altar, singing in the choir, ushering, or reading the lessons. Otherwise, older children can participate in the service or read quietly. For reasons of safety and security, children can not wander around the building without supervision, nor can older children be in the playroom, where the childcare providers need to concentrate on the needs of the younger children.

Starting this Sunday, Christian Education is offered for all school-aged children from 10:15 to 11 A.M. Our youngest class, pre-school through third grade, is taught by Meredith Strauss and is based on the widely-used, Montessori-based, Godly Play curriculum. Our middle school group, grades four through six, led by Eric Moser, will focus upon the weekly scripture readings as their point of departure for discussion and exploration. Beginning this year, the clergy will be offering a two year program for seventh and eighth graders that will lead to confirmation. Lucy Yates will continue to lead our children’s choir and rehearse on a bi-weekly basis following the Sunday School hour.

As we have in the past, there will be other events and programs throughout the year, including Advent Lessons & Carols, our Christmas Party and Greening of the Church, the Christmas Pageant, and the Shrove Tuesday Pancake Supper. A further exciting development is that, together with Lucy Yates we are in the process of working to develop a relationship with the Washington Heights Choir School, who will be joining us for special liturgies throughout the year. You will hear more about this going forward.

I am truly looking forward to seeing each and every one of you. With all my warmest wishes, I remain,

Faithfully yours,

The Revd Dr Andrew C. Blume +
Rector, Saint Ignatius of Antioch Episcopal Church