Monday, November 23, 2009

Thanksgiving service at St. Bernard

St. Bernard Prep School's annual Ecumenical Thanksgiving Service was held recently in the Abbey Church. SBP Headmaster, Fr. Joel Martin, O.S.B. said each year students and staff of the school are given the opportunity to invite clergy representing their various congregations and religious traditions.

The Service was composed of prayers, psalms, scripture readings and hymns that helped those present to be aware of and thank God for His loving care. The visiting clergymen offer the prayers and scripture readings, and students offer thanks and petitions to God as they lay symbols of their lives before the altar.

The sermon was delivered by The Rev. Robert Blackwell, Rector of Grace Episcopal Church in Cullman. Rev. Blackwell spoke to the crowd and stressed the importance of being thankful not only for the good things that have happened in the past but also for the tough times; and to be thankful for things in the future. Blackwell said, “We are people of Thanksgiving - always knowing God’s hand is forever at work in our lives.”

The St. Bernard Choral Ensemble under the direction of Dr. Rebecca Whited took part in the service. The service was followed by a dinner for all guests, students, faculty and staff. The guest clergymen were served by the students.

Fr. Joel said, “This is an opportunity for all of us in the school community to give thanks to God for the many gifts we have received, and to do so along with those pastors, ministers and priests who are so important in the lives of our students. These men and women are very busy, so we are all impressed with and grateful for their taking time to join us.”

Ministers who were present:
The Rev. Robert Blackwell, Grace Episcopal Church, Cullman
The Rev. Mr. Michael Branch, Sacred Heart Church, Cullman
The Rev. Patrick Cullen, St. Aloysius Church, Bessemer
The Rev. Michael Deering, St. Elizabeth Anne Seton Church, Gardendale; St. Henry’s Church, Warrior
The Rev. Dr. Edwin Hayes, First Baptist Church, Cullman
The Rev. Harold Hermetz, St. Paul’s Lutheran Church, Cullman
The Rev. Andrew Kennedy, Our Lady of Lourdes Church, Birmingham
The Rev. Alan C. Mackey, St. Jude’s Church, Scottsboro
The Rev. Mark Parris, First United Methodist Church, Cullman
The Rev. Raymond J. Remke, Annunciation of the Lord Church, Decatur
The Rev. Warren Ruland, St. Paul’s Lutheran Church, Cullman
Sr. Teresa Walsh, C.S.J., Annunciation of the Lord Church, Decatur

Present from St. Bernard were:
Fr. Marcus Voss, O.S.B.
Fr. Joel Martin, O.S.B.
The Rev. Bede Marcy, O.S.B.

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