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a newsletter of St. Luke’s Episcopal Church and School


St. Luke’s Episcopal Church is called by God to illuminate San Antonio with the light of Christ through transformative education for people of all ages, compassionate care for every member of our community, and inspiring worship and music in the Episcopal tradition.


From the Rector

Holy Expectation I’m a priest, so it probably makes sense that I would love the liturgical seasons of the church. But even before I became a priest I thought the season of Advent made a lot of sense. Advent means expectancy, waiting for Christmas, and longing for the coming of the Christ child. Children understand waiting for Christmas, so Advent makes more sense to them than any of the other season’s of the church year. But Advent is more than just waiting for Christmas.

The word Advent means "coming" or "arrival." The focus of this season is the celebration of the birth of Jesus the Christ in his First Advent, and the anticipation of the return of Christ the King in his Second Advent. Advent is a whole lot more than simply marking a 2,000 year old event in history. It is, in fact, celebrating the revelation of God in Christ through which all of creation was reconciled to God. That reconciliation with God is something that you and I continue to be a part of and something that the second coming of Christ will bring to a conclusion. The scripture reading for the First Sunday of Advent will reflect this emphasis on the Second Advent, including themes of accountability for faithfulness at His coming, judgment on sin, and the hope of eternal life.

Advent therefore has a kind of double focus on the past and the future. It symbolizes our spiritual journey as we affirm that Christ has come, that He is present in the world today, but also that He will come again in power. That acknowledgment provides encouragement for us to try to live the lives that Jesus called us to live. It also reminds us that we live "between the times" and are called to be faithful stewards of what is entrusted to us as God’s people.

May the Advent be a blessed and holy time for you as we prepare our hearts and souls for the coming of the Messiah.


Dates to Know November 26th • Friends of Music Choir Christmas CD Fundraiser in the Parlor from 8:30 AM - 1:00 PM. $15 per CD. five for $70

December 17th • Christmas Pageant At the 11 AM service. More info on the Childrens Christmas Pageant page!

December 1st • Parents Night Out

December 24th• Christmas Eve Services service info below

December 3rd • Lessons and Carols On Sunday, December 3rd at 5:00pm. More info on the next page

December 25th • Christmas Day No worship services will be held on Christmas Day.

December 3rd • Advent Wreath Event On Sunday, December 3rd, at 6:00 PM in the Gym. More info on the next page December 9th• St. Luke's Parish Profile Workshop On Saturday, December 9th, at 9:30 AM More info on the next page

December 31st • New Year's Eve There will be two worship services at 8:00 am & 10:00am on New Years Eve Sunday. January 5th • Parents Night Out

Christmas Eve Services The parish nurseries will be open during the 4:00 PM and 7:00 PM, worship services.

*10:00 AM - Advent 4 Service* Advent 4 and Christmas Eve land on the same sunday this year, so we are going to offer one morning Advent 4 service in preperation for the Chirstmas eve services in the evening. 4:00 PM This service includes joyful Christmas music, Christmas sermon, and Holy Communion. In addition, Children will be invited up front for a special Children’s message just for them.

7:00 PM & 10:00 PM These services are our most traditional. The parish Choir will be joined by the Avanti String Quartet to lead the congregation in traditional Christmas hymns. These worship services include Christmas Sermon, Holy Communion and candlelight.

Meet... Hi there! Some of you already know me but for those who don’t my name is Jill S. Martinez, and I am the new Administrative Assistant to Christian Formation. My family and I have been attending church here at St. Luke’s for over 9 years and we absolutely LOVE our church and church family. My past work experience has been as a Treasury Management Sales Officer and an Account Analysis Specialist but the past 10 years I’ve been a “volunteer extraordinaire” at both my children’s schools and here at St. Luke’s. Some of the volunteer roles I’ve held here at St. Luke’s include the Green Door Chair, Christian Giving Chair, and VBS Chair. I am excited to be part of the St. Luke’s staff and look forward to this new chapter in my life.

December 3rd • Lessons and Carols

December 3rd • Advent Wreath Event

On Sunday, December 3rd, at 6:00 PM in the Gym. Advent is the very first season of the church year. It is a season of waiting, and in Godly Play it is called a "getting ready season" as we prepare our hearts and our homes to remember and celebrate the birth of Jesus. The Advent wreath and its candles that are progressively lit during the four Sundays of Advent are a visible reminder of this "getting ready" season, and so ALL are invited to come to the Gym following the service of Lessons and Carols on Sunday, Dec. 3rd and create an Advent wreath for your home! A pizza dinner and everything you need to make your wreath will be provided. There is no cost for this event; it is our gift to you to help you observe this season in your homes. Feel free to bring friends!

Nominations for Vestry

The Vestry Nominating Committee is seeking names of individuals wanting to serve a 3 year term on the Vestry starting in 2018. The Episcopal Church says the following: "The basic responsibilities of the vestry are to help define and articulate the mission of the congregation; to support the church's mission by word and deed, to select the rector, to ensure effective organization and planning, and to manage resources and finances." Anyone who is at least 16 years of age and is a member in good standing at St. Luke's can serve on the Vestry. Whether you've been at St. Luke's for 1 year or 50 years, whether you are 21 or 91, it does not matter. If you are able to work with others in shaping the direction St. Luke's will head for the next 3 years, and if you are able to commit the time to attending one 2-hour meeting on the 3rd Monday of each month, you are welcome. If you wish to submit your name or another person's name for consideration, please reply to David Cotton via email at

St. Luke's Parish Profile Workshop

Saturday, December 9th, at 9:30 AM to 1:30 PM in the Gym. This work session, facilitated by the diocesan office, encourages participation from each and every member of the congregation. The purpose of the work session is to identify who we are and where we are going as a congregation. The profile is essential in the discernment and call process for Vestry, for the search committee and for clergy who may be considering a call to St. Luke's. Curt Mowen is appointed chair of the search committee.

St. Luke's Church

On Sunday, December 3rd at 5:00 PM The choir will perform the annual Advent Procession when we herald the imminent news of the Coming of Jesus. The church is filled by hundreds of candles representing the Creator's starry night, when the choir sings the Matin Responsory by Palestrina which calls us to look ahead and prepare ourselves. Mary figures strongly during Advent and the choir sings Hadley's I Sing of a Maiden, and Bruckner's luscious Ave Maria. As the choir processes around the church and the congregation's candles are lit, we hear Poston's Jesus Christ the Apple Tree which likens Jesus to a tree laden with fruit and the life of that tree. Finally the choir arrives at the east end of the church where Morten Lauridsen's O Nata Lux is sung: O light born of light, Jesus, Redeemer of the world, accept our prayers and praises as you are clothed in flesh. This is one of the most beautiful and atmospheric events during the church year, and you are invited to join us and then continue to the Advent Wreath-Making in the Parish Hall following the service.

Music at St. Luke's

CHRISTMAS ON THE HILL St. Luke's Choir has made a recording of traditional and exciting Christmas music featuring best-loved carols, anthems, solos, and organ works. This is to help support our upcoming residency at Ripon Cathedral, UK, in 2019. Sherry Millican sings Adams' The Holy City, David Heller plays Bach's Sleepers Wake, and your favorite carols with descants. The CD is $15 and will be available on Sundays starting November 26 after services, or call/email to reserve - Perfect for Christmas gifts or just to add some atmosphere to your home!

CHORAL INTERN SCHOLARSHIPS St Luke's Music Program has been so blessed to have four section leaders and also four choral interns. The leaders provide stability to our choral program, and the interns are gifted musicians mostly drawn from local universities; they gain experience of the Anglican choral tradition while supporting the choir as a whole. Most of the music budget is spent on stipends so we are looking to gain financial support for the interns. If you would be interested in sponsoring a position (soprano, alto, tenor or bass) we would love to hear from you. It costs approximately $2700 to cover one intern. We would list you as sponsor for the position in notices and information. Please contact me if you would like further information: 210-828-6425, x255, or

Russell Jackson

Children's Christmas Pageant Sunday, December 17th during the 11:00 a.m. worship service There is probably nothing that brings a smile to our face and reminds us more of the meaning of Christmas than the annual children's Christmas pageant! On Sunday, December 17th children ages 2 years through elementary will bring this incredible story to life. In addition to the "key players" (Mary, Joseph, the angel Gabriel, the "wise persons", etc.) expect to see a flock of wandering sheep, some dutiful shepherds, a heavenly host of angels, and one fairly unusual camel. This pageant also includes a portion of the folk carol, "The Friendly Beasts" and so there will be other "creatures great and small" who may have been present in that stable in Bethlehem. Though we will draw for certain parts ahead of time (see Drawing for Parts below), know that ALL children who wish to be a part of the pageant are welcome! So, feel free to bring cousins, friends and neighbors ~ truly, the more the better! Here are a few details:

#1 ALL COSTUMES ARE PROVIDED! #2 Drawing for Parts This will happen during the Sunday School time on Sunday, December 10th...and only involves the Kindergarten/1st grade class and the 4th/5th grade class. Kindergarten and 1st graders will have a chance to draw for the parts of one of the "friendly beasts" and 4th and 5th graders will be able to draw for the parts of Mary, Joseph, the Innkeeper, the angel Gabriel, the "Wise Persons", the Star of Bethlehem and the camel! Everyone else (truly, everyone!) may be in the pageant too, either as a sheep (2's and 3's), or a shepherd or angel!

#3 Practice There will be ONE practice on Saturday, December 16th from 10:00-11:15 a.m. in the church. 2 and 3 year old sheep do not need to come!

#4 Adult Crew Members Needed If you can help on the morning of the practice and/or on the morning ofthe pageant, please let Ann Allen know!


Frequently asked questions!

* What if my child can't come to the practice on the 16th? * What if we have cousins who will be in town? * What if my child would like to invite a friend? * What if they come on the morning of the pageant and change their minds about participating? All of these things are fine! This pageant is always perfect in the way that intends it to be, so just come!! Questions? Contact Ann Allen ( or Jill Martinez (

The Ibsen Family A few weeks ago St. Luke’s Church was blessed to host the Ibsen family. Kyle, Maggie, Haley and Barrett are missionaries we met in Haiti last summer. We were so incredibly blessed by their ministry to the Haitian people, that we have stayed in touch with them. Because of our wonderful experience with them our St. Luke’s Haiti team has grown close to them. We have found this family to be faithful and spirit filled as they serve in Haiti. The Ibsen’s serve the Amoveo mission organization. This year, they were given an opportunity by Amoveo to connect with the people they served with in Haiti, which included us! They will also be going to Iowa, Alabama, Georgia and Pennsylvania. During their time here they had the opportunity to reconnect with the St. Luke’s Haiti team and also visit our amazing city. They enjoyed the river walk and Haley and Barrett loved SeaWorld. Some of you had the opportunity to listen to them speak during the Sunday School hour as well. They shared with us the amazing work that they are involved in such as partnerships with coffee growers, women’s empowerment groups, bible studies, English classes, and much more. Kyle spoke about the importance of sustaining a local economy and not just dumping money into it, but having a long term solution with long term employment opportunities for the community. We are continuing to pray and ask God how we might partner with this amazing family as they live out the Gospel in Haiti. If you are interested in taking part in this, please let me know. This is a great opportunity to follow the words of Jesus by making disciples. Please continue to pray for them as they encounter unique obstacles, also pray that God fills them up spiritually. Haiti can be difficult with little to no infrastructure. Everyday life can be a challenge. Feel free to follow them on Facebook @Ibsens on an Island. It is my prayer that we will continue this relationship with them as they faithfully serve Haiti.

Glenn Meschko

Advent Outreach The expectation and hope felt by children during this season is both special and universal...not to mention contagious! So many of us are blessed to be able to provide the abundant joy of this season to the children in our families. At the same time, we know that there are many children for whom this abundance is not a reality. The Salvation Army, through their Angel Tree project, helps to provide a joyous Christmas to over 7000 children here in San Antonio each year. Once again this year, St. Luke's Church and School will be partnering with the Salvation Army to "adopt" 200 children ("angels"). Here's How It Works: The Salvation Army prepares and provides "tags" with information on a specific child, including their age and their Christmas "wish list." These "angel tags", along with specific instructions, will be available at all services beginning on Sunday, November 12th as well as on subsequent Sundays. You will have an opportunity to select an "angel" to "adopt" by taking their tag and filling a gift bag (provided) with items on their wish list. You may return your child's gift bag to the church on any Sunday, or to the church office during the week (8 a.m. to 4 p.m.). The deadline for returning your angel's gifts is Monday, December 3rd. There are lots of ways to participate: * * * *

adopt an angel as a family (whether your household is one or many!) partner with another family/friend/neighbor to adopt an angel adopt an angel as a group (your office, Scout group, Bible study, etc.) make a financial contribution (write check to St. Luke's memo "Angel Tree")

Youth Christmas Party Wednesday, December 13th Hey youth group! We are going to have a Christmas party Wednesday December 13th. Bring a white elephant Christmas present $5 or less. Don’t forget to wear your ugliest Christmas sweater for the ugly sweater contest.

• 4th-5th Grade 4:00-5:00

• Middle School 5:45-7:15

• High School 7:15-8:30

This will be the LAST youth group for 2017! Youth group will resume in 2018 on January 10th.

Thank you from AHISD

Bibles for 2 Year Olds! Sunday, January 21st A few years ago, St. Luke's began a tradition of presenting Bibles to 2-year-olds. These Bibles are especially designed to engage the minds and hearts of 2's as parents share with them the stories of the God who created and loves them, and of his Son Jesus. On Sunday, January 21st during both the 9:00 and 11:00 a.m. worship services (whichever you choose!) 2-year-olds and their families will receive their Bible and a special blessing. The Bibles are St. Luke's gift to you! Parents of 2's will be receiving more information in the beginning of January. We would love to include ALL 2's and their families, so if you have a 2-year old, or if your child will be turning 2 at the beginning of 2018, please let Ann Allen know (

Welcome to the Body Welcome the newley baptized: Ava Rose Thompson Emmett Allan Boebel Catherine Grace Duffield Welcome the newly married of St. Luke's: Rebecca Bonham Bagby and Drew Johnston Luna Jr. Daniel Kittrell and Emily Vandewalle Scott Arneson Allen and Rebecca Marie Brizendine Welcome the new members of St. Luke's: Michael Neely Rachel and Jason Lincoln and family Vivian Phillips Michaela Rogers For more information on being baptized or having your child baptized at St. Luke's, contact Michaela Rogers, Administrative Assistant to the Clergy, at Upcoming Baptism dates are: November 26th, January 7th, February 4th, & March 30th

St. Luke’s Episcopal Church and School 11 St. Luke's Lane San Antonio, Texas 78209

Nonprofit Org US Postage Paid San Antonio,TX Permit No. 1001

St. Luke’s Episcopal Church 11 St. Luke’s Lane, San Antonio, TX 78209 (210)828-6425 | The Rev. John D. Badders, Interim Rector -

Ann Allen, Children’s Ministries -

The Rev. Michael Koehler, Associate Rector -

Jill S. Martinez, Admin. Assistant to Christian Formation -

Michaela Rogers, Administrative Assistant to Clergy -

Glenn Meschko, Youth Ministry -

Tom McLaughlin, Head of School -

Daniel Kittrell Director of Communications -

Russell Jackson, Music Director & Organist -

David Thomas, Parish Administrator -

Dr. David Heller, Associate Organist -

Rhonda Jordan, Parish Secretary -

Joseph Degollado, Facilities Manager - Catherine Landis, Mustard Seed Director -

Vol. 58, No. 6

Advent (November) Tidings  

Advent Tidings for St. Luke's Episcopal Church in San Antonio