St. Francis Bulletin

March 2014

From the Rector


Although late this year, we begin the observance of Lent early in March, the fifth to be exact. On Ash Wednesday, I will celebrate the Holy Communion service at 12:00 noon and 7:00 pm and will distribute ashes during each service. Ashes, of course, are a sign that an individual intends to take on Lent with a passion. It is not simply a ritual observance that holds some magical power to change us. It is a sign that we want to change ourselves and become more like Christ as we seek first the kingdom of God. I don’t believe that this should be taken lightly. By that I mean that receiving ashes should be an indication that one is willing to take on the burden of conversion. Prayer, fasting, immersion in the word of God, acts of charity are all indications that I desire to become holy as God is holy. 


In the Gospels the disciples asked Jesus to teach them to pray. Jesus responded with what we know as the Our Father. The prayer, of course, is a model for prayer, more than something simply to be recited. It contains all the genuine essentials of prayer. But even with that, many people find prayer challenging and difficult. So during Lent this year we are going to take a look at prayer. Beginning on March 12 and continuing through Holy Week, those who wish to participate can join with fellow parishioners in a study called Pray in Faith. It is authored by T. W. Hunt and Claude King, who coauthored Experiencing God with Henry Blackaby. The format is the same. It includes five separate lessons per week which individuals do on their own and a weekly discussion group session. This will take place on Wednesday evenings at 7:00 pm. The lessons include Six Kinds of Prayer, Developing Your Prayer Life, Responding Prayers, Asking Prayers, Petition, and Intercession. If you are interested in enhancing your prayer life, I would encourage you to participate.


Also beginning on Ash Wednesday, March 5, 40 Days for Life begins its spring campaign. This prayer vigil at the four abortion clinics in Austin runs seven days per week, twelve hours per day and is designed to end the practice of abortion here and around the country. Throughout the history of this campaign thousands of women have chosen to keep their babies rather than abort them. The program operates in close conjunction with pregnancy resource centers in the area to help women and men who are considering abortion make a better choice. I encourage you to participate in this if you can. All that is necessary is that you donate at least one hour per week to pray on the site of an abortion clinic here in the area. Go to for more information. 


Part of Lent for St. Francis for the past several years has been participation in a food drive for the benefit of The Storehouse in Pflugerville. Over the years we have contributed thousands of pounds of food to help people feed their families. We will begin collecting food on the first Sunday in Lent, March 9, and continue until Palm Sunday. You have always been quite generous in giving to these food drives and I hope that you will be again. 


Finally, the Annual Pancake and Sausage Supper will take place on Tuesday, March 4, from 5:30 to 7:30 pm. This meal on the evening before Ash Wednesday developed as a means to “clean house” in order to prepare for Lenten fasting and of course coincides with Mardi Gras or Fat Tuesday. Since I assume that none of you will be going down to 6th Street on that evening, you are welcome to have dinner at St. Francis

Fifth Sunday Activities

March is the first of the four months in 2014 with five Sundays (June, August, November are the other months). As many are aware, this means there are two extra activities -- the potluck luncheon and the nursing home visit.

One of the perks of our temporary location is the space we have for fellowship. On the fifth Sunday (March 30), Kim and David Norris bring out many of the round tables and extra chairs and decorate the tables with a tablecloth and flowers. Your task is to bring something tasty to eat after the 11:00 service. It can be from any of the food groups -- bread, sides of veggies, pasta, salad, or a main course. The utensils and drinks are provided. The next task is to enjoy the fellow-ship of your St. Francis friends - the easiest one on the list and the most enjoyable!

From 3:30 - 4:30 pm on the afternoon of the fifth Sunday, a small group of St. Francis members gather at the Retirement and Nursing Center at 6909 Burnet Ln, Austin, TX 78757 where we sing 10 - 12 hymns that many of the residents might have sung in their youth, pray and read from the Bible. We always could use more people to sing joyfully to the Lord with these people. Your presence makes a difference to them! I lead this effort, along with Jim Crandell, Claire Ducker and Martha Freeman. Contact me with any questions at or 512-452-7231
- Amy Crandell

Sunday School News

The younger Sunday School class has begun Unit 3 of the One Room Sunday School Winter curriculum, entitled Jesus' Ministry. The inspirational Bible verse for this unit is John 3:2: "We know that you are a teacher who has come from God. For no one could perform the signs you are doing if God were not with him." 

We will study the following stories:  Jesus Calls His Disciples (Luke 5:1-11), Jesus Heals Peter's Mother-in-Law (Matthew 8:14-17), Jesus Teaches the Beatitudes (Matthew 5:3-12), and Jesus Calms the Storm (Luke 8:22-25).  This will take us into Lent.  The kids enjoy watching illustrative videos for each lesson - usually animated short pieces created for children.  

We have also re-instituted the thanksgiving prayer service at the end of each class. We gather round the Nativity on the floor and light a candle.  Each person gives thanks to God for something important. Then we pray the Lord's Prayer together and the kids blow out the candle.  Thanks to Amy Crandell for the inspiration to do this again!  It really brings everyone together.

The older class continues to study the Teach Deep curriculum with Doug Cooper. Thanks to everyone at St. Francis for your support. Please keep the Sunday School in your prayers.
- Missy Bernard

Austin City Prayer Walk

The prayer walkers continue their ministry on the first Saturday of each month of walking the neighborhoods to the east and little to the north of our location. We recognize that Austin must be covered in prayer and are part of an informal network of prayers from other churches and organizations who are doing just this. What do we pray for? The prayers are not set, other than we begin by asking for the presence of the Holy Spirit and for Him to give us the inspiration and the words that we are to say as we walk in the neighborhood. We meet at the church at 9 am for opening prayers and then drag out our map and pick an area we haven't covered and then drive to the spot. For the next hour, the pattern is to walk a bit, stop and pray as the Spirit leads us. The prayer is completely extemporaneous. Come and join us on Saturday, March 1 at 9 am. Kim and David Norris are spearheading this minis-try. Contact them at or 281.923.9028 for more information.  
-Amy Crandell
Mother's Prayer Group
To all mothers: before you dismiss this article as a identical repeat of what has appeared before, please read on. It is my sense that most of the women in our congregation are mothers with some having children living at home and most with adult children who live on their own. I am almost positive that regardless of the age of the "child", the love and concern for the well being, both physically, emotionally and most importantly, spiritually remains with all mothers. This is what drives the small group of women who gather on the 3rd Monday of each month. We want our children to experience God's blessings, to seek Him out in prayer, worship and study, to recognize that through sin they easily fall away from God and always need to be seeking His face. Of course, we want these things for ourselves as well, but why not extend our prayers to our children and grandchildren? Please consider joining us on Monday, March 17 from noon until 1 pm. Charlotte Ready leads this group and will happily answer any questions at or 512-288-5597.
- Amy Crandell

Anglicans for Life

Anglicans for Life will be meeting on the fourth Sunday this month, March 23. By this time the Forty Days for Life Campaign will be well under-way. If you are not able to participate in person, don't forget to put some time aside to pray for life and all those who stand and pray in front of abortion facilities.
- Phoebe Hughes

Newsletter Submissions

Any parishioner who has news of any kind to share is welcome to send it in writing to Tricia McLean at 640 Lakeside Dr., Wimberley, TX 78676 or to her e-mail address ( If received by the 20th, it will appear in next month’s newsletter.
10435 Burnet Road, #125
Austin, TX 78758
The Rev. Canon Len Giacolone 
Assisting Priest
The Rev. Peter Nganga
Altar Guild
Becky Hunt
Ray Merrill, Ed Sandlin, Arthur Woodgate and James Glomb
Al Parker
Mark Rambin
Music Director & Organist
Paula Blaha
Amy Crandell
Senior Warden
Mark Rambin 
Junior Warden
Keith Harrell
Michael Ready
Jim Crandell
Vestry Members
Grady Collins, Doug Cooper, Carole Martin, Don St. Martin, and Fr. Len Giacolone
Women of the Church
Leanne Read
St. Claire's Guild
Eileen Cole
Mothers' Prayer Group
Charlotte Ready
Christian Education for Youth
Missy Bernard
Anglicans for Life
Phoebe Hughes
David and Kim Norris
Jim Crandell
Grace Rowse
Newsletter Editor
Tricia McLean
Saturday, March 1
9 am, Austin City Prayer Walk

Sunday, March 2nd
9:30 am, Holy Communion
9:30 am, Sunday School for Youth
10:00 am, Choir Practice
11:00 am, Morning Prayer and Holy Communion
  • Exodus 24:12-18
  • Psalm 99
  • Philippians 3:7-14
  • Matthew 17:1-9
Tuesday, March 4th
Noon, Anglican Rosary
5:30 pm, Pancake and Sausage Dinner

Wednesday, March 5th
Ash Wednesday
12 pm , noon and 7 pm, Holy Communion with the distribution of ashes
  • Joel 2:1-2, 12-17
  • Psalm 103:8-14
  • 2 Cor. 5:20b-6:10
  • Matthew 6:1-6, 16-21
Thursday, March 6th
7 pm, Evening Prayer

Friday, March 7th
7 pm, Games Night

Sunday, March 9th
1st Sunday in Lent
9:30 am, Sunday School for Youth
10:00 am, Choir Practice
9:30 am and 11:00 am, Holy Communion
  • Gen. 2:4b-9, 15-17, 25-3:7
  • Psalm 51
  • Romans 5:12-19
  • Matthew 4:1-11
Monday, March 10th
5:30 pm, Vestry meeting

Tuesday, March 11th
Noon, Anglican Rosary

Wednesday, March 12th
7 pm, Pray in Faith Study
Thursday, March 13th
7 pm, Evening Prayer

Sunday, March 16th
2nd Sunday in Lent
9:30 am, Sunday School for Youth
10:00 am, Choir Practice
9:30 am and 11:00 am, Holy Communion
  • Genesis 12:1-8
  • Psalm 33:12-22
  • Romans 4:1-5, 13-17
  • John 3:1-17
Monday, March 17th
Noon, Mothers’ Prayer Group

Tuesday, March 18th
Noon, Anglican Rosary

Wednesday, March 19th
7 pm, Pray in Faith Study

Thursday, March 20th
7 pm, Evening Prayer

Sunday, March 23rd
3rd Sunday in Lent
9:30 am, Sunday School for Youth
10:00 am, Choir Practice
9:30 am and 11:00 am, Holy Communion
  • Exodus 17:1-7
  • Psalm 95
  • Romans 5:1-11
  • John 4:5-42
After the 11:00 service, Anglicans for Life Meeting

Tuesday, March 25th
Noon, Anglican Rosary

Wednesday, March 26th
7 pm, Pray in Faith Study

Thursday, March 27th
7 pm, Evening Prayer

Sunday, March 30th
4th Sunday in Lent
9:30 am, Sunday School for Youth
10:00 am, Choir Practice
9:30 am and 11:00 am, Holy Communion
  • 1 Samuel 16:1-13
  • Psalm 23
  • Ephesians 5:1-14
  • John 9:1-38
After 11:00 service, Potluck Luncheon
3:30 pm, Retirement and Nursing Center Visit
Mason Jensen
Andy Adkins
Heather Pangle, Penny Sandlin
Shirley Ellis, Missy Bernard
Joe Gardner, Grady Collins
Larry and Eileen Cole
G.W. and Carole Martin