Centennial Launch Brunch Celebration
Our church is truly a place of great blessings!
By Barbara Lockwood Russell
The opening event, in the heralding of St. Simon Cyrenian Church’s first 100 years was celebrated on Saturday, January 21, 2012 from 11 am until 3 pm in the church parish hall community center. Despite the chilly threatening weather, a dedicated crowd of worshippers and friends ventured out to extend the vision of God’s calling.
In a setting meant to signal the initiation of a full year of renewal observances, the great turn-out of attendees experienced an involved afternoon. The reception area of the church was beautifully transformed.
Several clergy members included Bishop Bruce Caldwell, representing the Episcopal Diocese of New York, the Rev. Robert Gahler of Trinity St. Paul’s, the Rev. Canon Kris Lee, the Rev. Deacon Paulette Remppel and guest speaker, the Rev. Dr. Allen F. Robinson. The gathering was further stirred by St. Simon's young praise dancers.
Truly blessed by our Lord, the Face Lift for Your Spirit group had accomplished a superior job of providing new caulking, fresh painting, new ceiling tiles, crisp window curtains, exquisite table arrangements and decorations. Among strategically place shelves displaying artifacts and pictures of former and current congregants, floral pieces were colorfully arranged.
Varied, unusual, tasty abundant foods sated appetites amid amazing raffle prizes, love filled spiritual addresses and testimonies from parishioners about St. Simons history and sentiment.
Truly energizing the parish to carry on its travel toward the second century, the Rev. Dr. Robinson delivered a rousing, soul raising, head filling, heart and hand clapping address.
Following Dr. Robinson’s salute and encouragement, Senior Warden Colette Phipps accepted citations and commendations from city, state and church officials. The Warden introduced and praised Junior Warden Richard Francis, the Vestry, the Centennial Planning Committee and other church leaders and the congregation for their magnificent prayers, planning, execution and support!
Photos courtesy of Bennie Giles
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At the January Centennial Launch, the Episcopal Diocese of New York was represented by assisting bishop the Right Rev. Bruce Caldwell, former bishop of Wyoming. The Keynote Speaker was the Rev. Dr. Allen F. Robinson, rector of St. James Episcopal Church, Baltimore, MD. New York State Assemblyman George S. Lattimer presented a centennial recognition citation to St. Simon's.