St. Michael & All Angels
Episcopal Church

Transforming lives through Christ

St. Michael's ~ Friday Brief

May 29, 2020
Reopening Update

    As states and communities begin the process of reopening, controversy seems to be as much a part of the process as the reopening itself. In a few places there have been demonstrations for and against, and even a few fistfights. What a variety of reactions: from total happiness to carelessness to fear and anger. I suppose the reaction is not all that surprising, given the state of our culture, a widespread absence of faith and the unprecedented nature of our present covid-driven environment. 

    As I said in an email last week, Bishop Smith has sent a letter to clergy permitting but not requiring a gradual reopening of the churches in the diocese. He has also delegated the specific decisions regarding when and how to the rectors and priests-in-charge of individual parishes. I have had two Zoom meetings this week, one with a group of medical professionals and priests, and the other with the people involved in scheduling and operating our worship services. Following these meetings I have determined that this is not the right time to begin the reopening of our parish facilities.

    Over 60% of our congregation are age 66 and up, a high risk category for COVID-19, and many of those have pre-existing health issues which increases the risk even more. While Sanibel has had only 11 cases of the virus and no deaths, it is reopening restaurants and shops which will increase possible exposure. Also, a significant number of parishioners live in the Fort Myers area. Lee County has the sixth highest number of infections among Florida counties, and the third highest number of deaths.

    As for the diocesan requirements, we are able to meet the majority of them. However, we do not have the appropriate equipment to sanitize our facilities before and after every function. Disinfectant wipes and cans of spray disinfectant are simply not adequate. 

    With all of this in mind, I do not believe it would be wise to begin in-person worship and meetings at this time.  I have scheduled another meeting mid-month to reevaluate the possibility of reopening.  Until then, be careful and stay healthy.

Sunday Morning at 10:30
On Sunday, Morning Prayer (Rite II) begins at 10:30 a.m. Remember, if you are not able to view the service when it is live, it remains on the St. Michael’s website to be viewed at other times.   The Sunday service will continue at 10:30  a.m. until we are able to have in-person services again.

A copy of the service bulletin is attached to this email (red button below) and will be current each week.  You can follow online or print out the bulletin.  Either way, I encourage you to not only follow along, but participate as well.  You can read the congregational responses and prayers aloud; and sing along with the music. It may feel a little strange at first, but you will quickly become used to it, and you will know that you are worshiping together with many others of our St. Michael’s online congregation.

Also attached to this email is the link (blue button below) to watch the service via or recorded.  If you sign on early...wait for the service to begin.  You'll see the timer counting down.  DO NOT press the "Go Live" button at the top.  
LIVESTREAM ~ 5/31/2020

John Pryor (5/31)
Margery Almas (6/1)
Stuart Theis (6/1)
Mary Ann Boorn (6/3)
Sue Shipley (6/3)
Susan Gonzalez (6/3)
Donna Hubbard (6/5)


Jamie & Neil Smith (6/2)

Louise & Gerry Fitzgerald (6/4)

Jan & Douglas Burdick (6/6)


Barry Gordon     •     Ralph Sloan     •     Judy Workman
Susan Elam     •     John Roz Burroughs     •     Ed Pereles
Pat Van Alstyne     •     Kristen Beltz
Polly Pinney     •     Paula Traxler     •     Wes Rooker
Brenda Demaree     •     George Craig     •     Jim & Pat King
Jan Pearson-Graham     •     Jean Chapman-Castle
Joan Downey     •     Mary Lou Flynn     •     Gretchen Van Walterop


May He Rest in Peace

Tom Altman
(Brother of Joanne Syversen)
May 25, 2020
Prayer for New Rector Search
God of patient and gentle strength, who knows our needs before we ask, may your loving presence guide us as we seek the next rector for St. Michael and All Angels. Give us an open spirit, discerning hearts and clear minds, that we may trust your will for us and become ever more united in your son our Savior, Jesus Christ.  Inspire our conversation, deepen our prayer, and make us a community of humility and grace.  Raise up for us, we pray, a priest and pastor who will boldly proclaim your Gospel, faithfully administer your sacraments, and serve your people with love and compassion.  Amen.
Bahamas Mission Trip 2019

Hurricane Dorian was the most intense tropical cyclone on record to strike the Bahamas, and is regarded as the worst natural disaster in the country’s history.  The Category 5 185 MPH hurricane made landfall on September 1st, hovering over Greater Abaco for 30 hours.  This is where our personal mission story is centered, specifically on Green Turtle Cay.

The good folks of Sanibel Sea School were quick to respond, receiving many contributions and personally delivering a load of supplies to The Green Turtle Cay Foundation.  Thanks to St. Michael’s for contributing to that very important fund.  Linda and Jerry Davenport along with Doug Viets from St. Michael's partnered with Joan Desilets and Julie Vergin from Iona Hope and Mike Grashof from Good Shepherd in Tequesta to form a disaster relief mission trip to Green Turtle Cay from January 25 to February 1.  Sanibel Sea School coordinated our work host, supported by Georgia Baptist Missions.  Great financial support filled in with donations from the Southwest Diocese, St. Michael’s Discretionary Fund and Outreach Ministry, as well as a private donation to add up to $4,500.

The amount of $3,500 was hand delivered to St. Peter’s Anglican Episcopal Church on Green Turtle with $700 donated to our mission hosts.  We worked exclusively on St. Peter’s Church with grounds cleanup, landscaping, floor tile preparation, rectory exterior wall prep for painting, plumbing, concrete form setting and more.  Restoration of the church has come a long way, but there is still much to do.  There continues to be no electricity and the roof leaks in places, with many other interior repairs needed.  The interior of the rectory has to be completed and the classroom/fellowship hall no longer exists and must be totally rebuilt.  Besides all the good work done during our week mission, a very good take-a-way was the relationships built and plans made for work to continue.  Our contact with the Episcopal Relief and Development National Office facilitated work with Episcopal Charities from the Southeast Diocese and from there came contacts with two congregations who will follow in our footsteps to continue the work at St. Peter’s. 

Making contact with Bishop Laish Boyd of the Bahamas and the Turks and Caicos was a blessing as work was then facilitated with Father Bryton Ward at St. Peter’s.  The Bishop came on our first day and worked with the Priest, Senior Warden, ECW Chairperson and our team to set the course for a successful week.  As our week was coming to a close additional needs were identified for possible assistance.  Many of the center pew braces were damaged and will need replacing.  We brought back a damaged pew brace and Iona Hope took the lead in fabricating 28 new pieces and those are on their way back to St. Peters. 

In addition to St. Peter’s, Father Ward serves four other churches that are damaged and he requested help purchasing a truck to get supplies around to all of his parishes scattered across Greater Abaco.  Good Shepherd took that on as a Lenten project and $20,000 has been raised with St. Michael’s ECW contributing $4,000 to that fund. Covid-19 has slowed the recovery process, but the truck has been purchased with much thanks to our congregations for the love they have shared. 

Thanks to all who shared thoughts, ideas, prayers, and financial contributions to continue the recovery of these beautiful island churches and assist so many wonderful people in piecing together lives that have been greatly disrupted.  Our involvement has been a blessing to so many, and we hope to continue our support over the years of recovery to come.

~ Jerry Davenport

[Click below to see photos from trip.]
Mission Trip Video Photo Album
Social Gathering on Zoom

It was great to see everyone whom participated last week in our socials. We will be continuing the Social Gatherings on Saturday night at 6 PM and Sunday mornings at 11:30 AM. 

Hope to see you all this weekend.  Have a great week and be safe.

~ Susie Wilson


 Meeting ID: 306 087 5790
Password: 535859
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2304 Periwinkle Way  |  Sanibel Island, FL  33957
[239] 472-2173

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St. Michael & All Angels Episcopal Church · 2304 Periwinkle Way · Sanibel Island, FL 33957-3209 · USA

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