Newsletter-November/December 2015

Anticipation of Advent and a Time of Thanksgiving

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

November is the beginning of a 40-day period of spiritual and moral preparation for each of us. It is the forty days we anticipate and prepare for the coming (Advent) of Christ into the world and into our lives.

November is also the month during which we give thanks. After a harsh winter during which half of the pilgrims died, the pilgrims welcomed the opportunity of a new year to clear land, plant seed and cultivate their lands. When fall arrived they were blessed with a good harvest. Together with their new friends, native American, whom they invited to the celebration, they held the first feast of Thanksgiving, a feast which Archbishop Iakovos described as “The Birthday of America’s Soul.”

With the coming of the Feast of Thanksgiving we have much to be thankful for. We are thankful for almost a total remodeling of our Church and with one last project the remodeling of our Church Kitchen. We are thankful for the past fund raisers we have had for our community with our old kitchen and we anticipate with gratitude the coming fund raisers we will provide for our community through our new kitchen. We are grateful that we have literally worn out our old kitchen. We praise our Lord for hard work our parishioners especially the elders of our community who put forward so much of their time and talents each year. In thanksgiving we ask God to bless them and continue to keep them healthy and safe. Along with being thankful the sacrifice of time and talents our parishioners put forward we are also very thankful for the treasures shared by our parishioners.

We look forward with thanksgiving in the coming years the continuation of being able to service our Lord through our time, talents, and treasures so we can continue in God’s Holy house to be able to bless, praise and worship our Lord.

However we are most thankful for Advent the coming of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
Truly salvation is at hand, Let us be thankful.

In Christ service,
Fr. John


The General Assembly Meeting and Parish Council Elections will be held on Sunday, December 6. Five seats are open for election. If you are interested in serving on the Parish Council, please contact Rob Fischer or Father John for the application and instructions. For those who are willing to vote, but cannot attend the meeting on December 6, there is a process to vote by absentee ballot. A ballot may be obtained from the Election Board Chairperson and must be received in the church mailbox before December 5, 2015. Proxy votes are not allowed. If a quorum of parishioners in good standing is not present on December 6, the General Assembly and Election will be held on December 13.

(2007 UPR Article 31, Parish Assembly: Section 2: Notice of a Parish Assembly shall be mailed to all Parishioners in good standing at least ten (10) days prior to the Assembly.

(2007 UPR Article 31, Parish Assembly: Section 4: The quorum for a Parish Assembly under local By-laws shall be as high as possible in such number of parishioners in good standing as its By-laws may determine. If a quorum cannot be achieved, no vote can be taken. If a quorum is not present, the Parish Assembly shall be called a second time within twenty-one (21) days. At such time, decisions may be taken by the number of parishioners in good standing present, with the exception of matters pertaining to the purchase, sale or encumbering of Parish property, in which case a quorum of parishioners in good standing shall be required.)

Please recall the requirements that need to be met to be considered a member in good standing.

At a minimum, a parishioner in good standing must: be eighteen years of age or over; be current in his or her stewardship and other financial obligations to the Parish, abide by all the
Uniform Parish Regulations and the Parish Bylaws; and cooperate in every way towards the welfare and wellbeing of the Parish. (2007 UPR Article 18, Section 1)

(1) Stewardship is recommended to be ten percent (10%) of one’s annual income as stated in Holy Scripture to help meet the financial obligations of the Parish, the Metropolis and the Archdiocese. (2007 UPR Article 18, Section 1)
(2) A member in good standing is expected to submit the proportional share of his or her stewardship pledge on a weekly basis to the Parish.
(3) Any person wishing to be a parishioner in good standing in more than one Parish must remit his or her Stewardship financial obligation to each Parish as stated above. A parishioner wishing to move from one Parish to another must present a letter of transfer from the Priest of the Parish from which he or she is moving stating that he or she is in good standing. (2007 UPR Article 18, Section 2)
(4) No person shall be deemed a parishioner in good standing while: not adhering to the standards outlined above; retaining affiliation in an Orthodox Parish which defies the jurisdiction or the ecclesiastical authority of the Archdiocese; being a member of or practicing a non-Orthodox faith or other religion; and deliberately disregarding and transgressing the moral law of the Church. (2007 UPR Article 18, Section 3) If you have any questions, please call Father John.

We strongly encourage everyone to please mark your calendars and attend. On top of elections, we will be approving a budget for 2016 and we will be voting on the kitchen remodel project.

Kitchen Remodel Project

The construction committee is in the final stages of plans and preparations for getting our kitchen remodeled. We are still short of our goal for the kitchen remodel fund. Our goal is $100,000. Currently we have $84,545.92. The difference from our goal is very close to the amount that will be spent on the new kitchen appliances. To make up that shortfall, we are offering the opportunity for those who wish to donate to sponsor or donate directly towards the cost of appliances. You can do this on our website under the “parish events” heading and then clicking on Donation. As donations come in, counters on the Web site will tell you when our goals have been reached. If you would rather donate by sending in your contribution, enclosed is a list of the appliances and the costs. Please specify which appliance you are donating towards. The cost of our range has already been donated! We are so close to making this project a reality!

The New Web site

We have a new Web site that is up and running. The web address is We are very excited about this Web site. You can now submit your stewardship (use the donation button and specify stewardship in the “purpose” field), donate to the appliances for the kitchen, and even purchase goods from the bake sale. You can access back issues of the newsletter as well as find current and past information about our church. There are links to our Facebook page and articles related to our Metropolis. We would like to thank Antoinette Goddard for all of her hard work on making this possible. We sincerely hope that our parish and community find this Web site to be helpful in keeping in touch with not only our parish members but also our community!

The Bake Sale
The bake sale will be November 20 from 1:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. and if we have any product left over we will sell on Saturday from 9:00 a.m. until the product is gone. We will need a full crew all day Friday to help with the sell. Please make whatever arrangements you can to be available to help all day and again on Saturday if necessary.

Our bakers have already started baking. Tina Faigl (307-354-8283) and Effie Manely (307-707-7050) are the people to call for the baking schedule and times that help are needed. Please find time to lend a hand. For those who work during the week, there are two opportunities on Saturdays to get involved. Those dates are November 7 and November 14. Baking will begin at 8:00 a.m. Up to this point, we have only had a few helpers and we are desperately in need of more help! Several of our key senior bakers are in poor health and it will take everyone’s participation to make this event a success.

We have something new and exciting for our bake sale this year. We are taking orders online through our new Web site. Again, the web address is There are several ways to get to the online order link. You can click on the “upcoming events” tab or either one of the “parish events” tabs. If you click on the pictures of the items it will give you a description of the item and how it is packaged for online purchasing. Online purchases will be picked up on November 16 between the hours of 1:00 p.m. and 4:00 p.m. or from 5:30 p.m. until 7:30 p.m. We are hoping that this will eliminate some of the supply and demand issues that we have had in the past. We will need people to help package online orders and be present during pickup hours on November 16. Please give Tina Faigl a call and let her know that you will be there!

Stewardship Packet

Enclosed is the stewardship packet as well as the steward card to be filled out and returned to the church. This card is very important as it enables your secretary to keep accurate records of the members of our church.

As you fill out your stewardship pledge, here are some things to keep in mind:

  • Stewardship is recommended to be ten percent (10%) of one’s annual income as stated in Holy Scripture to help meet the financial obligations of the Parish, the Metropolis and the Archdiocese.
  • Stewardship is designed to be the income that covers all of the general operating expenses of the church. Our church has not been meeting this goal for quite some time. We have been depending on fundraising to keep our church going. This can no longer be allowed to continue. Our core group of “fundraising workers” is diminishing with only a handful of individuals constantly shouldering the workload. We cannot continue to depend on fundraising that may one day, in the near future, be gone. We have to support our church through stewardship!
  • Stewardship vs Operating Expense facts:
    Year Total Stewardship Income Total Expenses (Not including Construction or remodeling) Percentage of Expenses Covered by Stewardships Percentage of Expenses Covered by Fundraising/Donations
    2010 24,925.00 54,933.89 45% 55%
    2011 27,440.75 64,267.98 43% 57%
    2012 27,840.00 72,336.72 38% 62%
    2013 25,800.00 69,748.53 37% 63%
    2014 26,953.00 74,431.50 36% 64%
  • In 2014 we had 50 families contributing stewardships. Of those 50 families this is how the stewardships broke down for the year:
  • (a) 1 family contributed $2,000.00 or more per year
    (b) 8 families contributed $1,000-$1,999 per year
    (c) 5 families contributed $800-$999 per year
    (d) 10 families contributed $500-$799 per year
    (e) 6 families contributed $300-$499 per year
    (f) 20 families contributed under $300 per year

Please seriously consider the numbers when you fill out your stewardship pledges. .

Annual Christmas Party

Our annual Christmas Party will be on December 13. For those who have children who are still in school and younger, please get your child’s information to Jenny Gaviotis no later than December 6. We want to make sure that Santa’s bag has a little something for all of the children that are attending the party. You can reach Jenny at 307-389-3416 or The dinner is a potluck. We are not sure what state our kitchen will be in so please consider hot dishes that can be brought in crockpots. We look forward to this opportunity to enjoy each other’s fellowship and celebrate the Nativity of our Lord, Jesus Christ!

November 2015
November 1, 2015
Orthros 9:00 am
Divine Liturgy 10:00 am

November 8, 2015
Orthros 9:00 am
Divine Liturgy 10:00 am

November 15, 2015
Orthros 9:00 am
Divine Liturgy 10:00 am
Monthly Parish Council Meeting
(Providing that there is a quorum)

November 20, 2015
Annual Bake Sale

November 21, 2015
Entrance of the Theotokos
Into the Temple
Divine Liturgy 10:00 am

November 22, 2015
Orthros 9:00 am
Divine Liturgy 10:00 am

November 29, 2015
Orthros 9:00 am
Divine Liturgy 10:00 am

December 6, 2015
Orthros 9:00 am
Divine Liturgy 10:00 am
First call for general assembly

December 13, 2015
Orthros 9:00 am
Divine Liturgy 10:00 am
General assembly meeting if there was not a quorum on December 6
Annual Christmas Party

December 20, 2015
Orthros 9:00 am
Divine Liturgy 10:00 am

December 25, 2015
Nativity of the Christ
Orthros 9:00 am
Divine Liturgy 10:00 am

December 27, 2015
Orthros 9:00 am
Divine Liturgy 10:00 am

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