Brenda Wallace
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The "Giving Tree" is in its place in the foyer, loaded with gifting opportunities for each of us. The three agencies to which our giving will be directed are McMan Calgary, Brenda's House and the Food Bank. On Sunday last, we had as special guest speakers Tenchoe and Stephanie (and Stephanie's baby.) The women shared with us the work that is done at McMan and Stephanie, who has been on the receiving end of the programming for the past five years, stressed how important the support given by the agency is in the lives of the young people that it serves. Stephanie told us that she is originally from El Salvador, arriving in 2008. McMan has given her a voice. The agency began as a Group Home in Edmonton in 1975 and, since 1980, has operated in Calgary. Over 2500 vulnerable youth have been served since its inception. Our gifts will provide food for families during the Christmas season. 

In keeping with our Giving Tree tradition, mystery surrounds the event. This year our stars come from Faith Quest with Nicolas, Hugo and X disguised as Batman, Robin and the Riddler along with Stephanie and Vanessa. The mystery riddles will be resolved over the next few Sundays. 

Following service Sunday morning, we enjoyed a delicious lunch (provided by council) and then attended the Annual General Meeting of St. David's. Some congregational statistics are found on page 31: Confirmed Membership is 491, Households under Pastoral Care are 283 with 240 Households financially supporting Local operations. During the 2017-2018 year, we had six child baptisms, five adult confirmations, 8 deaths, 6 marriages and 10 funerals & memorials. I will be attaching the Annual Report 2017/18 for your perusal. (p.s. I was thrilled to have my pen and ink sketch of St. David's featured on the cover page.)

A Highlight of the AGM was the status report from the Edge Committee with Colin Outtrim. The program is built around the image of a frog, sitting on the edge of the lily pad. Should he retreat? Freeze? Leap? Explore? The program was developed in Ottawa in 2014 and has served many church communities since that time. Colin discovered during 12 weeks of conversations with members of the congregation, present and past, that we are willing to change - exploration is the consensus. 

Using the nine recommended questions, Colin gathered 727 comments (with 8800 words). He ranked the comments on a five point scale. It is now the job of council to analyze, review and select areas of change we might explore. Excitement awaits us!!!  I will upload Colin's powerpoint to the Home page. 


We were so privileged to watch the magic woven by Janice Rider and her Chameleon Drama Group that presented "The Scarlet Pimpernel" after service on Sunday. The cast of 15 were mostly young teens with the youngest being Hugo (age 9). They knew their lines exceptionally well but hadn't anticipated laughter. When the audience responded in laughter, the actors just barrelled on with their lines, unheeding to the audience response. With the help of Yvonne Adams and Debbie Charnuski, along with pianists, Sierra and Mae, and veteran actress, Sophia, the young people carried the day. Kudos to Tapas Sidker and Brenda Wallace, PSALT, for handling projection, sound and lights. Well done, team. We can hardly wait to begin rehearsals in the spring!!!

Speaking of good things, our weather has been quite phenomenal this past week. Our snow has disappeared and our roads are bare and dry. Not bad for November. Speaking of November, Christmas is around the corner - 35 more sleeps until the 25th. Before that arrives, we have our ACTS Annual Book Sale, the Giving Tree, four Advent Sundays - December 2,9,16,23rd with White Gift Sunday on the 16th (service lead by the children of Faith Quest) with our Annual Christmas Brunch following, the Blue Christmas Service on December 21, 2018 and, of course, our Christmas Eve Services at 4:30 p.m. and 8:00 p.m. on December 24, 2018. 

November highlights include our Coffee and Muffin Ministry on the 22nd (next one is Dec. 13) and our Friendship Club Annual Christmas Dinner and Dance on November 30 (supper at 6:30). Check out the Event page to get more information on our upcoming events. 



The congregation was so privileged to have the "Perfectly Imperfects," a Confederation Seniors Choral Group, directed by Alison Demeter, accompanied by Brent Tucker and David Baker, present the story of "In Flander's Fields" and John McCrae in word and song. Familiar old tunes had words projected and St. David's was filled with music as the congregation joined in. Following the service (the Postlude was LARGO  from "Xerxes." There was nary a dry eye as the words to this famous poem were read in unison. 

So many people contributed to our worship experience Sunday morning. Betty's Sacred Service team, the singers and readers, the musicians, the PSALT team, the counters and office folk and the congregation which gathered after service in the T.M. room to visit and enjoy the treats provided. Truly, St. David's is a great place to be Sunday morning (and during the week, too.) 

First the news from St. David's to November 5, 2018

On Friday night and Saturday, Nov. 2 and 3,  the Calgary Alliance of the Common Good (CACG), under the leadership of Ryan Anderson, held a Leadership Development Seminar at St. David's. We had 40 people from a variety of affiliated organizations (churches, unions, synagogues etc.) who came together to learn how to implement the ideas supported by CACG to create change in our Calgary community. In October, about 200 people came together at B'Nai Tikvah Temple in a ACTION ASSEMBLY which was attended by four city councillors and one M.L.A. where each committed to advocate for seniors and reconcilliation between indigenous and non-indigenous issues. St. David's was represented by 13 people and our Adult Spiritual Development Leader, Wayne Holst, introduced us. 

Friday night, in Robertson Hall, our Friendship Group met for their November Social. Entitled “Rocks, Ridges, and Rivers: Geological Wonders of The Canadian Rockies," the folks gathered there were guided by Dr. Dale Leckie, through the Canadian Rocky Mountain National Parks. His eye- catching illustrations and photographs were much appreciated. This presentation along with his guidebook blended story telling with science and natural beauty and his easy-to-understand explanations were enjoyed by all. Many of the places he highlighted were familiar to the gathered assembly. 

Colin Outtrim, our one-person Edge Committee volunteer, has become an even more familiar face at St. David's as he continues to gather data and begins to implement some of the congregations new ideas. He has interviewed 20 people so far, more this week. Nine questions were asked with 369 responses. September Sacred Service team was interviewed. Demographics represented congregants 20 to 90 years old. Answers ranged from 100 answers to 500 answers.

Ten per cent participation of the congregation is considered to provide a basis for a process like Edge. Colin has reached out across Canada to broaden his understanding of the process. You might even find advertisements for upcoming events in Coffee News. Currently it will highlight the Scarlet Pimpernel Play (November 18, 2018 following service). And... if you drive down Crowchild at night, glance up at our stained glass window facing west and it will be lit up for all to see. Thank you, Colin, for your dedication to this very timely ministry that you are providing on our behalf.

Following service Sunday morning we were privileged to listen to a piano recital by Carlos Santos. who started his musical studies on the organ at the age of six. Starting piano lessons at the age of 12, he completed Grade 10 from the RCM (Royal Conservatory of Music) of To-ronto with First Class Honours within 5 years, studying with Allen Reiser in Calgary. After a four-year hiatus to complete his Mechanical Engineering degree from the University of Calgary, he resumed studying with Allen Reiser and completed the Associate Exam (ARCT) in Piano Performance from the RCM with First Class Honours in 2015. As an active performer, Carlo has performed in solo recitals across Alberta and has won scholarships and awards at lo-cal festivals and competitions in Calgary. He has adjudicated in festivals across Alberta, and his students have been recommended to provincial competitions. His current project in music is the Licentiate of Piano Performance from the Royal Conservatory of Music of Toronto. He currently teaches piano, rudiments and history lessons privately in his Calgary studio. 

The sanctuary was quite full after service as we listened attentively to his offerings. 

Yes, November 2018 is off to a fine start. As I write this, it is snowing slightly as it has been doing all day. Session #7 for Monday Night book study has been uploaded (see all the sessions thus far that are attached as files at the bottom of the Adult Spiritual Development Ministry page), Session #8 of the Thursday morning Bible Study is slated for the upcoming week, the year round Wednesday morning  Qigong sessions meets on Wednesday morning and the Chameleon Drama Group will be having a dress rehearsal for their presentation after service on Nov. 18. P.S. Get your tickets to the Friendship Group Christmas Dinner and Dance on Nov. 30. See Events.