Both youth and adults serve as Acolytes at St. Barnabas, assisting in our worship by carrying the cross, bearing candles, and helping the priest with the elements of communion. The Acolytes are led by Acolyte Master Bill Bjorkquist.
Altar Guild is responsible for the care of the altar, including set up, clean up, linens, and arranging flowers, which are mostly donated by parishioners. They are twelve members strong, rotating each week. The group meets at least twice a year to conduct business and elect officers. Altar flowers are distributed on Sundays, delivered to the sick or given to those who have birthdays that week and to newcomers.
The bounty from our Community Garden is served at our monthly community dinners or donated to those who attend, shared with parishioners on Sunday, or given to Neighborhood House for their food pantry. Volunteers plant, weed, and water the garden throughout the growing season. The garden also includes a large strawberry patch along Vermont St., offering free berries to all!
It is great to have cheerful faces welcoming each of us as we arrive Sunday morning for worship. This is an essential faith effort to welcome newcomers — whether visitors or those looking for a place to worship. We currently have a team of eight Greeters, but could use more volunteers for fifth Sundays and as substitutes. This is a volunteer task that only takes a few minutes. The main requirements are a smile and a greeting! If you are called to this ministry, please see either Sheila Dougherty or Lisa Begley. We are hoping to have some training in the near future to make sure we ask the right questions and get the right information from visitors to pass along to Father Sean and Deacon Laurel for follow-up calls and/or visits. Thank you to Sheila for implementing our Greeter program!
Lay Eucharistic Ministers
There are currently eight Lay Eucharistic Ministers who assist the priest during worship services by reading psalms and prayers and by serving communion. The group has just begun to meet with Deacon Laurel on a regular basis for continuing education and planning. They serve at the weekly Sunday services at both 8 and 10 A.M., and at special services throughout the year.
Loaves and Fishes
An important outreach of St. Barnabas for many years has been our Loaves and Fishes team. Our current team of ten members is led by Lisa Begley. We meet on the second Wednesday of each month from 9:30 A.M. to 1:15 P.M. at the Multnomah Arts Center. While there, we help prepare lunch, set the dining room tables, serve lunch, and clean up. We work hard, but the rewards are great. So many of the diners have touched our hearts in ways that cannot be described. We would love to have more join our team, as regular members or as substitutes. Often there are months when we are short a few members of our crew and extra hands are needed. If you think this might be a calling for you, please contact the church office at (503) 246-1949.
The demand for meals is on the rise. Many of the participants in this program receive SNAP benefits (food stamps), and with the recent cuts made to these benefits, their need for a nutritious meal is higher than ever. They can no longer purchase the fresh fruits and vegetables needed for a balanced diet. At lunch there is always salad, soup, a main course, fruit, vegetables, and dessert. Just last year, the number of meals requested increased by 8%. A typical year-over-year increase is just 3%. With retirement benefits becoming much smaller for our seniors, we will only see the demand for meals continue to increase. If you would like to help with a donation, you may go online to www.mealsonwheelspeople.org.
Lewis “Judge” Needham uses both the organ and the piano during services and has been the Organist at St. Barnabas for many years. At Christmas and Easter, we add a trumpeter to our musical offerings. When Judge is on vacation during the summer, it is not uncommon to have young people from the congregation fill in with special piano music.
A small but mighty group of eight to ten adults sings during the 10 A.M. service and at other special services. Rehearsal is held on Tuesday evenings at 7 P.M. Glenn Bjorkquist is the Choir Director.
Second Sunday Singers
This group formed a few years ago and is for anyone who likes to sing, but who is unable to join the Choir on a regular basis. Rehearsal is at 9:15 A.M. on the second Sunday of each month, with a corresponding performance taking place during the offertory at that day’s 10 A.M. service. This group is for adults and children alike, and is also led by Glenn Bjorkquist.
This “occasional” group performs several times throughout the year, either with the Choir or separately, and is open to all ages. Glenn Bjorkquist directs the Chime Choir.
Neighborhood House Emergency Food Box Program
Emergency Food Box Distribution Guidelines have changed drastically, and Neighborhood House needs your help! Guidelines now follow the USDA plate: Every meal should be comprised of 1/2 fruits and veggies, 1/4 grains, and 1/4 protein. That means lots of fruits and veggies, and very few processed items. Please help Neighborhood House keep their shelves filled! Below are listed their most-needed items in order of importance:
- Canned vegetables and fruit
- Cold cereals
- Dairy (condensed milk, powdered milk, shelf-stable non-dairy milk. etc.)
- Spaghetti and tomato sauce
- Canned beans
- Peanut butter
- Low-sodium, low-sugar, gluten-free, or whole-grain non-perishables for families with special dietary needs
Food items are a priority, but other goods are also welcome, including shampoo and laundry soap, which cannot be purchased with food stamps. Please, no glass containers.
Pastoral Care Committee
The Pastoral Care Committee is led by Sheila Dougherty. The committee’s mission is to reach out to those members who can no longer make it to St. Barnabas to worship with our church family, but who are still in our hearts and prayers daily. The team currently has 11 members who reach out to 16 homebound parishioners by sending cards and photos on a regular basis. Summer is a great time to send postcards to help cheer up these folks’ days!
Sheila is very excited about developing the next phase of this mission. For now, it is called “Two by Two.” She is organizing teams of two members each to go out and make personal visits to homebound parishioners. Several of us have done this occasionally in the past, but it will be a more organized activity moving forward. Please let Sheila know if you are interested in joining this important outreach team.
Pennies from Heaven
We use pennies and other coins for outreach through the Women of St. Barnabas, and in support of the West Women’s & Children’s Shelter. Please empty your coins into the penny jars located in the narthex.
Prayer Shawl Knitters
This group meets once a month at the church, or members can work independently at home. The group provides shawls for those who are ill, hospitalized, or homebound. The shawls are blessed during a special service, with the congregation participating in a “laying on of hands” prior to distribution.
The Prayer Shawl Knitters meet on the first Tuesday of each month from 10 A.M. to noon in Room 1. The core group of knitters is currently seeking additional members to help support this ministry. Don’t know how to knit? We will give you all the necessary materials and one-on-one instruction! How can you resist that offer?
Ushers at St. Barnabas help to greet visitors, carry the communion elements forward to the altar, pass the collection plate among the congregation, and assist members with physical mobility issues in receiving communion.
Weekly Prayer Listing
Praying for our parish community, the needs of our friends and families, and the world is an important ministry at St. Barnabas. Please contact the church office and/or Deacon Laurel when you know of a need for prayer. Prayers requested by parishioners will appear on the list in the weekly service bulletin for six weeks. The office administrator will track this time and remove the prayer requests after six weeks. If a need for prayer continues, please notify the office to continue the listing for an additional six weeks. If you have any questions or concerns about the weekly prayer list, please see Deacon Laurel.
Women of St. Barnabas
The Women of St. Barnabas are very active in our parish life. Not only do they provide the coffee, tea, and paper products for coffee hour and receptions, they also host a number of fellowship events throughout the year. These annual events include the Women’s Holiday Tea, spring’s Spaghetti Dinner, an all-parish Graduation Reception, and the “Oktober” Sausage-and-Song Fest, which is always great fun!
Outreach projects sponsored by the Women of St. Barnabas include an in-gathering of toiletries, household goods, bedding, and personal items on behalf of the West Women’s & Children’s Shelter. Additional projects are supported as needed throughout the year, with funding for these raised via an annual Rummage Sale.