Your Weekly Parish Briefing!
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Thursday, February 25, 2021

1188 Hamp Mil Road, Dahlonega, Georgia 30533 • PH (706) 864-5423    
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Father John Writes
Finding God in Lent
When Not Understanding IS Understanding

The church where I was baptized was Presbyterian and we had a very set theology expressed in the Westminster Confession of Faith. From childhood I was versed in these teachings and in them I believed to find the truth about God. This was attractive. I was young and as the world broke into my consciousness one little bit at a time, sometimes wonderful, sometimes frightening, it was reassuring to believe that everything was in the care of a God who, thanks to the Westminster Confession of Faith, I understood all I needed to know. 

As I grew up, especially in teenage, I began to be deeply dissatisfied with this idea of  a group that had been shown the truth. Feeling that the world was under the care of a divine being always rang true to me, but I began to doubt more and more that my community had all the answers. It was apparent to me in their attitudes expressed about black people, about liberals, about those other people in other churches and faiths, that they themselves did not truly believe in this "truth" either. 

In this time of questioning, and in a time when my body was going through so many changes which my mind could not subdue, I was more and more drawn to the Holy Communion. It defied my mind to grasp it. It was a simple act resembling a meal, and yet it promised through bread and wine to connect me to the spiritual God. It was the weekly celebration of the Holy Communion that first attracted me to the Episcopal Church. It did not offer understanding, but it did offer relationship to this baffling elusive and yet also loving and ever-present God.

That was perhaps the first step in a long journey that enabled me to value the mystery of God over understanding. Jesus' teaching also prodded me down that path. Jesus tells us the Spirit will lead us into truth. He does not tell us that the Spirit will give us truth. Indeed, Jesus says that he himself is truth, not some meager understanding we can hold in our grey matter or write in the Westminster Confession of Faith.

I slowly grew to trust God not because I understand God, but, because I feel I bump into the holy in all the dimensions of my being, not just my mind. The multi-faceted richness of life keeps bumping me into its author, into God. I dwell in both life and God, and understand neither. My understanding of God has come to be NOT understanding God. It is faith in God, not knowledge of God, that leads me deeper into the abundant life that Jesus promises.

Have a blessed week everyone!
Father John+
New This Week

Five Lenten Questions

A Reflection Series by our Bishop

He asks us to embrace the self-examination of Lent as a spiritual practice to bring us closer to God. He posts the next video each week. There is also a study guide. Check it out here. Father John is willing to watch the video and go through the study guide with anyone who would like. Give him a text or a call to set up a time. His number is (914) 512-8156.

The Second Lenten Service is this Tuesday at Noon
You can attend and listen in the safety of your car!
A call to submit articles for the  FEB | MAR | APR  issue


Deadline for articles: Sunday, March 7
Please email: or call Margo for information.
Spotlight on Nature

by Rosalie Jensen

Owl in the Desert

Hearing the Gospel lesson about Jesus in the desert on the first Sunday of Lent brought to mind the lament in Psalm 102, “I am like an owl in the desert.”   In the same chapter the Psalmist says, “For I eat ashes like bread.” 
The little Screech Owl in this picture is not in the desert nor does it lack proper food to eat.  After an accident, it was rescued and taken to Amicalola State Park, where it is now protected and cared for with other injured raptors.  
 Thanks, Rosalie. 

Saint Elizabeth's Episcopal Church is a NWF Certified Wildlife Habitat

H A P P Y    B I R T H D A Y   
Spring is getting closer and birds will come to feed or find residence at the church's grounds... 

Our birds will happily chirp welcoming your provided houses, feeders (especially hummingbird feeders), grains, suet or any monetary donation towards that purpose. "Chirp-chirp!" (Thank you!)
Please send our donation indicating Creation Keepers at the memo line to: St. Elizabeth's Episcopal Church ● 1188 Hamp Mill Road ● Dahlonega GA 30533
Our Parish This Week

Sue Spence, Devon Olivia Rooney, Davis Burns, Pam Stimers, Elise Sullens, Jackie Peabody, Paul Hamm, Rosa St. Claire, Pat Hughes, Pete Pratt, Henry Grimes, Angie Elmore, Terry McLendon, Jenna Brown, Christy Lowe, Keegan Plumley, Ginger Macheski, Robert Wright, Richard Lutz, David Baker,  Margaret Skelly, Sharon Hall, Judy Miller, Joy Schyler, Vicky Schyler, Ricie Eubanks, Ken Dusen, Ruth Purcell, Bill Vogt, Randy Pruitt, Nancita Palomos Knuckles, Wynell Pace, Bob Shields, Susan Shields, Paul Roberts, Marti Carter and Frances Thrasher.


Merry Meal Makers

The food ministry has adopted a new name. "Merry Meal Makers". We would like to invite you to join us. A new list of individuals willing to make & deliver a fresh home cooked meal when needed is being compiled. As of today I know of no one in need so just looking toward the future and being prepared. If you would like to accept this invitation simply send an email with your best contact information to Suzanne Ryerson at When you are called upon you will be given all the particulars the recipient has requested. Thank you, Suzanne.
NOTE: The use of the freezer can be reopened once the pandemic is over and we can all gather again at the church. Thank you for your support.


4        D. Loux
14      M. Callender
17      K. Duke
19      J. Hayes
25     R. Jensen

See the source imageFebruary


No anniversaries

If we missed your special day please email your BIRTHDAY & ANNIVERSARY dates to:


8        Alice Moore-Wherry
12      Mike Saunders
12      Gerald Skelly
28     Wendel Long
29     Warren Johnson

See the source image

19        Jackie & Walton Peabody
20        Pam & Jarell Jones
23        Martha & Tom Roberts

26        Lynda & Mike Duke

Please email us your special dates:
Thanks to Harriet!
I would like to express thanks to Harriet Connolly for her faithful weekly preparation of the Sunday Bulletin. Martha

Thanks for the new feeder pole donation!
Our feathered friends are appreciative of Creation Keepers efforts maintaining and expanding their feed supplies! 

NOTE: Please email us to recommend someone to thank in our Parish.
Personal Notes for the Parish Family
Do you have personal news you'd like to share with the parish? It might be the birth of a niece, a new job, an article accepted for publication, a godson you love, a concert or an art exhibition? Send in a short sentence or two with your news and we will include it for one week. This is a project suggested by a parishioner and we are willing to give it a try.

Please email your THURSDAY's NEWS to:
Worship in the Coming Weeks
Making our Worship Vibrant and Joyful!
Sunday Worship is on YouTube Each Week. The Service is available every Sunday after 9:50 am. Like all our parish videos, it can be found on our YouTube channel
Tuesday, March 23 at noon
 Hancock Park, Dahlonega
Fruits of the Spirit: GOODNESS with Father John
Community Helping Place of Dahlonega PANTRY needs:
 Grits  Spaghetti Sauce  
Personal Care Items: 

● Shampoo ● Conditioner  Body wash  Deodorant  
Community Helping Place of Dahlonega DENTAL CLINIC needs:
● Dental floss  Toothpaste for sensitive teeth 
NOA needs: ●  Canned goods  ●  Bedding sheets  ●  Towels  ●  Wash clothes  ●  Toilet paper  ●  Paper towels  ●  Antiseptic wipes
• Anyone wishing to continue to donate items for NOA may feel free to drop off such items at:
c/o Betty & Shirley: 26 Blue Ridge Overlook Drive, Dahlonega, GA 30533 
Please call Betty first at 706-344-7100 to let us know you are coming so the garage door will be open. 
• There is a plastic bin along the left hand wall of the garage for you to put things for NOA in. 
Thank you so much for thinking of others in these difficult times. - Betty Greene -
Events in the Weeks Ahead...
Ongoing Items and the Weekly Schedule
Regrettably Distribution of Communion has Been Suspended ...
due to a high incidence of COVID infection in our area. We cannot say when we will begin again, especially with the advent of the British variation. The decision will be based on public health advice, scientific observation, and an abundance of caution. Pray that God will remind us that loving one another right now means not getting together.
Our Core Values

Faith. By prayer, worship, fellowship, service, and study we are deepening our trust in God each day.
Love. Jesus said the first and greatest commandment is to love God with all our hearts, souls, and minds. Second, we are to love our neighbors as ourselves. We believe people come to know Jesus Christ through relationships made of love and compassion.
Service. We are the hands and feet of Jesus now so we must act in the service of others. We are called to help those in need, especially the sick, the hungry, the marginalized, and the poor.
Justice. Our world is not perfect. Because of God’s love and justice, we advocate, and fight for justice, equality, and the dignity of every human being.
Stewardship. God has blessed all of us richly in many ways so we cherish opportunities to bless others and to do good in the world.

F E B R U A R Y   |   M A R C H   |   A P R I L

F O R W A R D   D A Y   b y   D A Y
For online podcast listening: 
Megaphone: A Modern Podcasting Platform
Additional information: 
Forward Movement

Sign up for Lenten Daily Prayer

Do you want support as you seek to pray? Are you willing to support others? Consider being part of the Lenten Daily Prayer Group. Individually we will use the book “Celtic Benediction” by John Phillip Newell daily and then gather Tuesday evenings on Zoom as a group to share our experiences. We chose this book because it draws on the poetry and the celebration of nature and natural rhythms characteristic of Celtic Spirituality. The prayers are simple, beautiful, and do not require an enormous commitment of time.

Group Meetings are: March 2, 9, 16 and 23rd  from 7:00 to 7:30 PM
Sign up by February 16th in order to get the book which we will provide.
On Zoom (Sign up to receive Sign in information)

To learn more and to sign up go to

Search for a Relevant Faith
A group for spiritual renewal

Most of us began following a spiritual path (though we call it "going to church") because we were told it was a good thing to do. While many people have stopped practicing any faith, we are still here. This group will offer a forum and resources to explore why we are still here: ways faith enriches life, reasons a spiritual path might still be relevant in 2020. What is it about this path and about Jesus that attracts us? Are their aspects of this path that are unhelpful? What do we do about those? The group will also serve as an introduction to the Episcopal Church, preparation for Confirmation, Reception or Renewal of Baptismal Vows. The intention is to truly honor any who seriously wonder whether a life of faith still matters in 2020. If you are interested please send an email to the parish office or leave a telephone message there. (706) 864-5423 or 
It is never too late to make a 2021 Pledge Onlin
It is safe and confidential and very much appreciated. Thank you. Go to this Link: 
Support our Certified Backyard Habitat
laine Clark and Rosalie Jensen have donated handmade cards that are selling at the nave to benefit the Certified Backyard Habitat. Each card is approximately  5" x 7" and includes an envelope. Suggested contribution per card $5.
In Thanksgiving to Julie & the Choir...
Saint Elizabeth's Episcopal Church's Artists & Photographers are donating the proceeds from the sale of their work displayed in the Art Gallery at the Boyd Hall to St. Elizabeth's Music Fund 

 Thank you for your support! Please, make check payable to: St. Elizabeth's Episcopal Church, and write MUSIC FUND in the memo line
Moving to 10:00 am
Join us, while at the comfort of your home and watch Sunday service together!
ZOOM meeting:
Sundays at 10:45 am
Come see how others in the Parish are doing!
ZOOM meeting: 

Thursdays at 11 am
All welcome to FABS in these extraordinary! 
ZOOM meeting:

Need volunteer READERS for Sunday Service
We will love it if you read to us in a Sunday Service! Please contact Fr. John at 914-512-8156 or email us at: Your "virtual" presence at a service video/recording it's a way to visit each other while staying apart. Thank you.

Parish Office hours during pandemic
The Parish office is open on Monday from 9 am to 1 pm. We recommend to call before you visit since we are keeping up with the restrictions on limited amount of people at the premises. Wednesdays and Thursdays the parish administrator works for home. Thank you.
Sunday Ministries


Second Sunday in Lent

Genesis 17:1-7, 15-16
Romans 4:13-25
Mark 8:31-38
Psalm 22:22-30

The Collect

O God, whose glory it is always to have mercy: Be gracious to all who have gone astray from your ways, and bring them again with penitent hearts and steadfast faith to embrace and hold fast the unchangeable truth of your Word, Jesus Christ your Son; who with you and the Holy Spirit lives and reigns, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.
You can follow our services on FaceBook:

Also, on You Tube:
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