New Toilets in the Parish Hall!
Quick! Get a peek at the new toilet rooms before they board the area up again.
Every weekday morning they open up this space.
By 3pm everything is cleaned up, and it all disappears again behind plywood.
Aha! Framing is up and it looks like some drywall is coming up soon....
(view looking EWA into the space)
Yes, indeed, look at that--three rooms and a hallway leading to them!
(view looking DH into the space)
The first is the ADA accessible bathroom with a changing table, the second is a toilet and sink,
and the third is a toilet, sink, and changing table
(Use your imagination on those for now.).
Oh, and by the way, they installed
THICK insulation between those walls.
Meet our Stained Glass Artisans!
Jim Erickson and Annalee Jones
We simply have THE BEST stained glass artisan team on the island! For the past 40 years, Jim Erickson has specialized in church window design and restoration with a studio on the North Shore. His knowledge and experience in the field are vast. He is our stained glass consultant and the one who worked with us in designing the new and improved window. A colored pencil rendition of it currently resides in the church office. Annalee Jones is the fabricator of our new window. Her studio, Glass Rainbows, is on the windward side. Annalee has an art background and entered the world of stained glass in 1995. She quickly became known for her meticulously crafted, beautiful work. Both Jim and Annalee consider the way their partnership for this project evolved to be, well, divinely guided! Are we surprised? :)
These are the blues!
Blue is just one color in the window....no, that's not right! "Blue" is many colors in the window as you can see from the samples below. In addition, there is the center cross which will remain red as well as the browns and grays of the rock on which the cross stands and other colors that will be used in the composition. Some of the glass in the original altar window will be used to make a unique and special touch--a ti plant at the base of the cross.
The replacement of this altar window is an emergency project, the need for which was discovered after our construction contract went out to bid. We are very, very blessed, with the original altar window being a gift from the Kong family in memory of Rev. Kong's father, that the descendants of Rev. Kong as well as the Kau and Liu families are gifting St. Peter's with this window in gratitude for their faithful family members who loved and were dedicated to this church. What a gorgeous tribute, and huge gratitude from us!
In memory and honor of lifelong members Samuel P.K. Liu, Sarah Kau Kong and Christopher S.C. Kong, and The Rev. Ernest Kau, brother of Sarah. Chris was the son of Rev. Kong, and Samuel and Sarah served as a team at St. Peter's, Samuel as a long time treasurer and Sarah as a long time secretary. The ti plant rising from the rock is constructed of glass harvested from the original altar window.
Get used to this entrance!
This is an important place!!
These are the bathrooms! Yes, plural. Enter through the door and you're in a little hallway.
Open the first door and you are in the ADA accessible bathroom. Open the second door and you are in small room with toilet and sink. Open the third door to your right as you walk in and you are in another bathroom (3 new bathrooms!!!) with a changing table for those babies!
(Actually, the ADA accessible bathroom will have a changing table, too.)
We sang our alleluias and basked in the resurrection light. We had conquered the journey of Lent and Holy Week! Yet one more journey is ahead we are to conquer... RENOVATION!
Renovation has now begun on the sanctuary and other areas of the complex and our liturgies are being held in the parish hall. Will we have the strength to endure no organ, no beautiful stained glass, kneelers, and everything else that makes our liturgy special? Can we endure the "hall" experience and yet be as one in Christ? We've been reminded that the church is not the building but it is the people.
At the end of the 3 months (or so), I will be the first to run in the sanctuary and play the organ and wonderful grand piano. I will be so excited to worship in our space again. And yet, I am enjoying the hall experience. The people... the church... are talking to those they might not have before. The choir is closer to the congregation and singing has been heightened. The incredible people at St. Peter's continue to ensure that Christ is present in our liturgies and in each other.
Through the next few months, my question will be how to capture this elevation of singing and bring it to the sanctuary when we return. What will we be able to do to heighten the music ministry? The thoughts enter my reflections but for now, we must continue to bask in the light of the resurrection. We must continue to worship and see God in all. We must continue and we must carry on.
"Come let us praise the living God, joyfully sing to our Savior. Alleluia, alleluia! Give thanks to the risen Lord Alleluia, alleluia! Give praise to his Name." - #178, Hymnal 1982.
St. Peter's in Scaffolding
Anyone want to climb to the top? Now's your chance!
Our church sanctuary is temporarily undergoing repairs & renovation along with the addition of the restrooms in the Parish Hall. Updated photos will be posted to this blog and our Facebook page throughout the construction process. Expected completion of this phase is through July 31st.
For more info, see our newsletter.
I find Lenten music inspiring and enjoyable to sing. As singers, we are able to read the words and sing them to music, and almost all of the Lenten music with which I am familiar is lovely, both in words and in music.
Lent is a particular time of the Christian year in which we are able to think about what we might do better, and during the eight years in which I cared for my parents, I came to really appreciate the ability to sing, as an adjunct to the spoken Confession of Faith (I prefer, as usual, Rite I, because I love the language), and to get myself into a state of mind that was helpful to me as a caregiver. I'm not perfect - and perhaps much less so than some of my fellows, and I know it, and the period of Lent, painful though it might be, prepares me for Easter and the Resurrection of our Lord. It's a reminder that thoughtfulness and sacrifice come before joy.
When I sing, I'm not alone, and I'm not just in the company of my fellow singers, but in the company of all those who have sung this music before, and put the words so carefully to music. My voice swells to be singing with them.
"To decline from sin, and incline to mercy: That we may walk with a perfect heart."
I was working with a patient this week that will be transitioning soon. I began our time together by playing some Sinatra that, in my mind, would comfort her. Even though she is not able to speak, she let me know very soon that the music was not comforting her! I saw the body gestures and heard the growl and changed the music. She became calm, rested, and even hummed to IZ singing "Somewhere Over the Rainbow".
Today is Ash Wednesday and we begin our Lenten journey. The last few weeks have been preparations for this time including music. It won't be easy. Some of the texts just rub us the wrong way and irritate us to no end. "Wilt thou forgive the sin, where I begun, which is my sin, though it were done before?" UGH!!!!! And to wrap up the verse comes the comforting statement "... when thou hast done, thou hast not done, for I have more." Oh and let's not forget the numerous verses throughout our hymns about suffering and reminders to take up a cross and follow. It's uncomfortable!!! It makes us want to forget about Lent and jump to the alleluias of Easter Sunday. And yet, maybe that is precisely why we must sing these hymns. This is not a time to just "be" in the liturgy. It's a time to question, assess our walk with Christ, and maybe be a little uncomfortable.
As we draw close to Holy Week, let us be reminded of times in our lives when "my God, my God, why have you forsaken me?" was all we could mumble. It is this horrible reality in our lives that creates our Passion and allows us to experience Good Friday. It is this horrible reality that allows us to remember, to relive, to be, and to change.
Our Lenten hymns develop beyond the above frankness and bring the promise and comfort that life will be renewed. Our walk on this earth will be made light in the next. If you stop to check the text carefully and really reread the sentiments you will find this.
"Abide with us, that so, this life of suffering over past,
an Easter of unending joy we may attain at last!"
Accept the challenge of our walk ahead. Take up your cross - whatever that may be - and follow, listen, pray, and sing our Lenten hymns with courage!
Dr. Joseph Eppink
Director of Music
I was recently googling music ministry and ran across this definition of music ministry from St. John the Divine in Houston, TX... "Music at SJD exists to glorify God and is integral to our worship and liturgy – worship being the core of our congregational life. It encourages the congregation’s song in corporate prayer and praise. Through its unique power, music goes beyond words, enabling all present to encounter the mystery of God in Christ Jesus."
Have you considered the importance of music in our liturgy? There may be variations in thought, hymnody, psalmody, anthems, etc. but the foundation for everyone is powerful.. "enabling all present to encounter the mystery of God in Christ Jesus."
We are at a crossroads of new beginnings here at St Peter's. The choir is rehearsing and leading worship on Sundays, the organ is in full steam of being completed, and a variety of music is being used to promote a worship for all, a blended worship.
Continue to keep our music program in your prayers. Consider how you can participate more fully in the choir, ukulele ensemble, jazz service, and even through song and prayer in our liturgy.
May our music lead us to encounter the mystery of God in Christ Jesus!
Dr. Joseph Eppink
Director of Music
Dear St. Peter’s Ohana,
I can’t believe it has been nearly three years since I left you all to set out on the journey that has been seminary. There have been moments where it felt like school would never end. Now, looking back, it feels like it is over in the blink of an eye. I have been incredibly blessed by my experience at Virginia Theological Seminary. Over the past three years, I have had the opportunity to travel to both Canterbury and Jerusalem, to study with brilliant professors who have made scripture and theology come alive, to become a part of a church community in Washington D.C., to worship with classmates who I know will be both colleagues and lifelong friends, and so much more.
As I approach the end of my seminary career and look forward to starting my ministry as an ordained person, I am thankful for the role St. Peter’s has played. The support you have given me-through prayer, encouragement, and finances-has been invaluable. It has afforded me the luxury of knowing there is a community of support back home in the islands to both advocate for me and walk with me through this season.
My graduation from VTS is Thursday, May 19, 2016, at 10:30am EST. The ceremony is live streamed, and I will pass on the link as soon as I have it. The recording will stay up on the VTS website, for those of you who may not want to get up that early in Hawaii! I will be traveling home to Oahu shortly after graduation for a break before I start the next chapter of my life. I look forward to catching up with all of you once I am home. Thank you for everything you have done for me the last three years! My thoughts and prayers are with all of you!
Love and Blessings, Annalise
Dear St. Peter’s Ohana,
I can hardly believe months have passed since I was in the islands finishing up my chaplain internship at Queens Hospital. My third and final year of seminary has been full and rewarding. Looking back now, it hardly seems possible that my time on the East Coast is starting to wrap up.
My classes are going well. I am currently taking Christian Ethics (my toughest class), Liturgics, Introduction to Singing, a seminar on the Gospel of Luke, Ministry of money, and Field education. I have a few more credits to take, but I will finish most of my required classes this semester.
I have been working off-campus a few mornings a week at a preschool. It has been a great joy. Some weeks I have found it hard to balance school and work, but I continue to work at it.
In September, I coordinated the Episcopal Relief & Development 75th Anniversary Photo Exhibition for VTS. It went fabulously. I was so pleased to share the amazing work that organization is doing, and has done, with my community. I love working with Episcopal Relief & Development. I hope to extend that work beyond my time at seminary.
The Virginia Theological Seminary community was a buzz in October as we consecrated our new chapel. We had over a thousand visitors on campus. We hosted the Archbishop of Canterbury, The Presiding Bishop, The Presiding Bishop Elect and so many others. I was honored to serve as an oblation bearer and to help distribute communion at the consecration service. The students got to have a question and answer session with the Presiding Bishop and Presiding Bishop Elect at our own dinner. It was a special time that I will never forget.
Personally, I had the opportunity to travel back to Oregon and celebrate my younger sister’s wedding in early October. It was ridiculously busy and full of joy. Many of you know that I am the oldest of three girls. We were excited to welcome our very first brother into the family. I couldn’t be happier for my sister and brother-in-law. It has been a very special season for family, and I am grateful for that.
As you can likely tell, these past two months have been a whirlwind. I am looking forward to things settling down in November. I am hoping to really focus on school, maybe even taking on some extra reading. I would also like to focus on my prayer life more intentionally. One of the most important lessons I have learned at school is that it is impossible to have a successful ministry and sense of personal well being without prayer!
I hope all is well at home, and I look forward to hearing from you all soon!
Message from Jar Pasalo
Over the past weeks I have found myself waking up to temperatures below freezing. As I lay in bed snuggled up in three layers of blankets, I think to myself, this is probably be the last time I will be living in this kind of weather. I can’t believe that I am in my final semester at seminary. This time, three years ago, seminary was just a thought, never a reality. I have never dreamed that I will have the chance to travel to theHoly Land. Never thought I would drive up to NewYork City, see the sights, and return on the same day or even drive 14 hours to Orlando, Florida to spend the weekend. Most of all, it was never part of my goals to obtain a graduate degree, yet alone, one focused in theology.Seminary has been the most challenging that I have done in my whole life. The funny thing is that it is justthe very beginning my journey. The next thing for me is graduation which will be on May 21, 2015. There are things in works for what I will do after that, but at the moment that is all I can share. I am continuallyamazed to see what God has in store for me next.Thank you all for your continued support and prayers.I look forward to returning home, where the sun is warm.
Message from Annalise Castro
I am writing to you on my third snow day of the semester. It has been snowing all day, and it doesn’t appear to be slowing down anytime soon! I am not complaining,though. It has given me a day to catch up on the little things. School has been going very well. I gave up working my on-campus job, which has helped me immensely. My budget is tighter, but my grades have risen substantially. I am confident that this was the best decision for me. The second year is widely considered to be the most academically challenging of the three years. That has been my experience so far. I am learning a lot, though.I love the church where I am working, St. Patrick’s, very much! They have been incredibly supportive and gracious as I continue to learn and grow in ministry. I preach and participate in the liturgy regularly. I know that this will be one of my fondest memories of seminary.This summer I will be participating in the Clinical Pastoral Education program with Pacific HealthMinistries. I will be serving as a chaplain at Queens Hospital. I will be on staff during the day, with some classroom work and on-call weekends. CPE, as we refer to it, is an intense time that many priests point to as an incredibly important part of their formation. I am excited to return to Oahu to fulfill this requirement. Iwill do my best to show up to St. Peter’s when I am not at the hospital, but admittedly may need a few Sundays to relax and catch up on sleep! That is my most recent news. I hope everything is well back home!
One of the great privileges in my time at VTS so far has been serving as a Seminary Representative for Episcopal Relief & Development. I have learned so much about what this action arm of the Episcopal Church is doing throughout the world. There are several amazing campaigns going on as we celebrate 75 years of healing a hurting world. The campaign I would like to highlight today is Gifts for Life.
This year, the Seminary Representatives of Episcopal Relief & Development are challenging the VTS community members to purchase at least one Christmas gift from the Gifts for Life catalogue. It can be in addition to the gifts you are already purchasing or as a gift in place of something else. One gift from each member of our community could make a very real difference across the world. You can purchase anything from a goat to seeds to postnatal care for infants. The full catalogue is available online. For hard copy catalogues and cards to give to someone in recognition of the gift you purchased, visit the Episcopal Relief & Development table in Scott Lounge during lunch on December 3-5. If you can’t stop by at lunch, send an e-card when you purchase your gift online. In this season of Advent, as we prepare and await our savior, let us take every opportunity to live out the Gospel and offer Christ’s love to the world!
Check out the giving opportunities here: https://www.episcopalrelief.org/what-you-can-do/gifts-for-life/all-gifts
Seminarian and Postulant in the Diocese of Hawaii
My middle year, second year, of seminary is well under way. It's been a busier year for me academically, but I continue to learn so much from my amazing professors.
My passion outside of schoolwork this year is Episcopal Relief & Development. I am serving as a seminarian representative for Virginia Theological Seminary. I attended a conference last month to learn more about the work that Episcopal Relief & Development does around the globe. It is truly amazing, and I am so honored to work this organization.
In my free time, I have been exploring the East Coast. There is so much to do in DC. I have had a blast spending more time in the city and making the most of living near the nation's capital. One of the highlights of the year so far was getting a library card from library of congress. The landscape is especially colorful right now as the leaves change. It is starting to get cold, but I am a little better prepared for my second winter here! I hope all is well in the islands!
We were very blessed to have our Seminarians Jar and Annalise lead our service on Sunday, July 27th. We also enjoyed having them present photos from their trip to the Holy Land during our 9am Adult Forum. It is always great to hear experiences from everyone's travels and our different walks of life. Please continue to keep them in your prayers.
Annalise Castro, has completed her first year of seminary at Virginia Theological Seminary, and is doing an internship this summer at All Saints Episcopal Church in Kapa`a on Kaua`i.
JaR, who completed his second year of seminary at Virginia Theological Seminary, is recovering well from ALC surgery on his knee, and will be returning to Maui on July 4th to recuperate over the summer.
We received notice recently that JaR has been awarded a $3,000 scholarship by the Society for the Increase of the Ministry (SIM). He is one of 64 seminarians from 40 dioceses attending eight Episcopal seminaries and four non-Episcopal divinity schools who have received scholarships. Besides monetary support, the organization supports their "SIMinarians" with semi-annual pastoral visits at their seminaries, regular communication, and praying for each of them on a daily basis. We can join in that prayer support and regular communication for both JaR and Annalise. They will be leading worship with us on Sunday, July 27th. Mark your calendars!