Priest-in-Charge Address

The first annual meeting of the combined parishes of Episcopal Church of All Saints and Ascension was called to order on Sunday, January 28, 2018 by Father Dunnington as his sermon during the Holy Eucharist. His message was that our new parish is answering the call of God for resurrection…and that God will be with us during this challenging time.


  • 2017 was a challenging year
  • Court and audit concluded no acts were committed that were illegal or unethical
  • Father Daniel Pearson has been retained to help with ongoing merging process
  • Bishop has asked Father to stay on until the merger if totally finalized in 2019
  • Bishops Committee and the Vestry members have been asked to remain until 2019
  • Statistics on services performed, funerals, visitation, vacation, conferences


During the business part of the meeting (conducted after Eucharist) the meeting was called back to order.  Reports and the following agenda was distributed to members:

  • Opening Prayer
  • Explanation of modified elections-recommended by Diocese
  • Vestry Election
  • Election of Lay Delegates
  • Adoption of Revised By-laws (mailed to members in advance)
  • Financial Report
  • Senior Wardens report
  • Architectural Committee Report
  • Report of Merger/Name Change
  • Election Results
  • Fr. Pearson’s Presentation
  • Questions and Concerns
  • Closing Prayer

Election of Vestry and Lay Delegates

The following 10 people were elected to the new unified Vestry:

  • Betty Brown
  • Walter Fox
  • Michael Griffin (Appointed Senior Warden)
  • Georgia Harrell
  • Sondra Harrell
  • Prince Thomas
  • Annie White
  • Gaylard Williams
  • Margarett Williams
  • William Young

The following were elected as Lay Delegates to the Diocesan Convention:

  • Patricia Heeter
  • Machelle West (Alternate)

Financial Reports

Tabulated financial reports were handed out to members that attended the annual meeting.  It included a balance sheet and an income/expense sheet for All Saints.  And a separate balance sheet and income/expense sheet for Ascension.  The finances for both parishes have not yet been combined.  This is part of the ongoing merger process.

The Food Pantry also provided a tabulated income/expense report for 2017.  It itemized donations that were made by parishioners and organizations, and summarized expenses.  It illustrated that additional financial support from the congregation can be used.

Senior Wardens Report

Michael Griffin began by thanking everyone for their prayers and support during 2017.  He indicated that we have made great progress as we move closer to completing the merging process.  Mr. Griffin indicated that going forward that the leadership team pledges to transparent and will do everything possible to ensure that the church will continue to meet the needs of its parishioner.  He detailed the following accomplishments during the past year:

  • Fr. Dunnington’s contract was renewed for another year.
  • First annual stewardship campaign completed
  • Established a parish newsletter, “The Messenger”
  • First annual homecoming event as a combined parish
  • 18th Annual Gospel Jubilee was successful
  • Active outreach committee (community picnic, trunk or treat)
  • Updated member information with member-profile-form
  • New music director, Andrea Hunter
  • All Saints building/grounds sold
  • Proceeds from building sale deposited to restricted account
  • Furniture and fixtures from sold building in storage
  • All Saints altar/altar rail have reinstalled in Ascension building
  • Working with architect Jim Riddle on plans to improve building
  • A new stove was purchased for the kitchen
  • Parking lots were painted and striped
  • Building alarm system has been updated

Mr. Griffin also announced the receipt of a generous donation  to the church from the trust fund of Henry B. Wallace in December of 2017.  Henry was a childhood member of All Saints who passed away in 2014.  He was a loving brother of parishioner Suzanne Harris, and the uncle of Sanford Hamilton.

Other Reports

Episcopal Church Women (ECW) provided a report for 2017.  They emphasized that funds that they collect support many activities of the church.  And in addition to funding some building improvements and stocking the kitchen, they often support the Men’s Club with activities when asked to so.  The activities for 2017 include:

  • Pancake supper (for Altar Guild in recognition of Shrove Tuesday)
  • Lenten Quiet Day
  • Fathers Day breakfast and gift
  • Juvenile detention birthday party (community outreach)
  • “Back to” Sunday
  • Homecoming (including chicken dinner fundraiser)
  • Trunk or Treat (community outreach)
  • United Thank Offering (UTO) fall in gathering
  • Advent Quiet Day