During the Christmas season, the post office collects letters written to “Santa” by children and families in need and makes them available for answering. Each year, we have a selection of letters to choose from in the Parish House. We pre-sort the letters and choose those that ask for necessities; e.g winter coats, shoes and smaller gifts. All are invited to participate in shopping, wrapping and/or mailing gifts. Children of any age can make Christmas cards. Thanks to all who participated in Operation Santa 2015. We purchased, wrapped and packaged gifts for over 100 children!
Human Trafficking Awareness
Human trafficking is the fastest growing criminal enterprise in the world and enslaves thousands in our city. In October, the Rev. Adrian Dannhauser gave an awareness training and suggested two immediate actions everyone can take:
- Learn the signs of human trafficking and save the National Human Trafficking Resource Center hotline in your cell phone contacts. Call if you encounter a potential human trafficking situation: 1-888-373-7888
- Urge your Congresspersons to co-sponsor the Runaway and Homeless Youth and Trafficking Prevention Act by submitting this letter.
In November, parishioners traveled to the Cathedral of St. John the Divine to experience the UN GIFT Box, a walk-in piece of art that educates viewers about the realities trafficked individuals face. The GIFT Box is on view at the Cathedral through the end of the year.
During Lent 2016, Incarnation will offer a two-part education series on human trafficking, “Unbind and Let Go.”
In John’s Gospel, Jesus is called by his friends to the tomb of their brother, Lazarus. The scene is one of grief and hopelessness, until Jesus prays that God’s glory might be revealed, calls Lazarus out, and says to his friends, “Unbind him, and let him go.” Unbind him, and let him go. This is how God has always restored to life those enslaved by death. It is the same command that calls us as Christians today to combat human trafficking, to pursue with compassion the restoration of victims, and to be agents of God’s glorious, life-giving work in the world. “Unbind and Let Go” is a Christian education series developed for congregational use. Blending Bible study with teaching about modern-day slavery, it provides participants with an introduction to the issue of human trafficking from a faith perspective.
“Unbind and Let Go” will be offered from 12:30 to 1:30 pm on the following Sundays:
- February 14
- February 21
Computer Help for Seniors — Senior Resource Day
Responding to current needs of senior citizens, some of whom have limited experience with computers and social media, Church of the Incarnation has developed a unique outreach program to teach and assist those who would like to learn computer skills or put the knowledge they already have to better use. Three times a year, Incarnation holds “Senior Resource Day,” when parish volunteers offer one-on-one tech assistance to help seniors in the neighborhood navigate the Internet and email, video chat, Facebook, smartphones, and tablets (such as iPads).
One of the first attendees of Senior Resource Day asked to get connected to Twitter so she could stay in touch with her granddaughter living far away. An 84-year-old who said her parents lived well into their 90’s decided to set up a profile at a dating site. Others have learned computer skills and how to use new APPS.
Our last Senior Resource Day was Sunday, November 22 from 1:00 to 3:00 pm. Local physical therapist and parishioner, Todd Edelson, also joined us to discuss preventing falls in a presentation and Q&A.
Senior Resource Day continues to be a meaningful experience for seniors and volunteers alike, a testament to the power of ministry in Jesus’ name. To quote one volunteer, “I got a hug from one of the seniors, as she was so happy with what we were able to do for her. I certainly made a new friend. It really felt good and for me; the presence of the Holy Spirit was evident. We get so much from helping our neighbors as Christ taught us.”
The next Senior Resource Day will be offered from 12:30 to 2:30 p.m. on Sunday, March 13, 2016, and will include a presentation on life-time planning documents (wills, powers of attorney, medical directives, burial designations).
Moravian Open Door
Incarnation is often involved in projects at Moravian Open Door, a transitional housing program for homeless seniors. One ongoing volunteer opportunity is writing birthday cards so that every resident gets a note of support and care on their birthday.
To get involved or to learn more, please contact email@example.com.
The Center was founded as “Incarnation Camp” in 1886. Now a 700-acre site in Ivoryton, Connecticut, east of New Haven, the facility includes almost 60 buildings and a mile-long private lake. It is open 365 days a year for overnight and day camps, conferences, nature study and recreation. The Incarnation Vestry annually elects the governing Board of Directors, which has representatives from our parish and 25 other sponsoring parishes. A link to the camp is provided; its main phone number is 860 767-0848.
Link Parish in London
In 2009, our parish established a link with a Church of England parish in the Diocese of London, with which the Diocese of New York has a “companion” relationship. Our link is St. Vedast Alias Foster, located in the ancient City of London, just behind St. Paul’s Cathedral. Incarnation members visiting London are encouraged to attend St. Vedast’s and to make themselves known to the clergy and parishioners there. We recently received a visit from Father Alan McCormack who has been our chief contact. Father McCormack is moving on to a new position in the summer of 2015 but our association with St. Vedast will continue as will our friendship with Father McCormack.
Our next exchange visit to St. Vedast Alias Foster will be May 6-10. Parishioners are very welcome to join the group for worship, fellowship and an insider’s perspective on that great city. Details are in a flyer available in the Parish House, or contact Ann or Ted Rast, firstname.lastname@example.org, 212 363-0422.
“Ask me for a blessing. God’s grace is meant to be shared.”
Each Tuesday at 9:00 a.m., we put out a sign with this message in front of the church. One of the clergy stands outside to offer blessings and prayers for healing to those who pass by.