Regular Service Times resume August 21

This Sunday, August 21 we will return our regular service schedule:

 7:45 am      Holy Eucharist, Rite I
 9:00 am     Holy Eucharist, Rite II
11:00 am    Holy Eucharist, Rite I
 6:30 pm     Autry House Eucharist (St. Bede’s Chapel)


Serve Sunday August 21

Over 200 Palmer members participated in our first Serve Sunday in April, going out in teams to serve the city of Houston. Our next Serve Sunday is August 21st. Please join a team and join the fun! Note that, for this Serve Sunday, we will not have one combined service; rather, we will work around the existing service schedule of 7:45, 9:00, and 11:00. Please wear your blue Serve Sunday t-shirts again, and if you don’t have one, you can purchase one on Sundays between services! To join a team, email the team leader directly, as described below. For any other questions, please email The Rev. Alex Easley at 

SERVE SUNDAY 8/21 — Join a Team!

The Beacon — Morning
The Beacon is a downtown non-profit connected with Christ Church Cathedral. It serves Houston’s poor and homeless by providing meals, showers, laundry services, legal services, counseling, and more. Palmer team members will be serving in the kitchen and doing laundry. 1212 Prairie Street.
Time: 7:00 am– to 10:00 am
#: 10 people
Age: 16 or older, 13-15 if with a parent
To join this team, please email Team Leader Elizabeth Hagens at


The Beacon — Afternoon
The Beacon is a downtown non-profit connected with Christ Church Cathedral. It serves Houston’s poor and homeless by providing meals, showers, laundry services, legal services, counseling, and more. Palmer team members will be serving in the kitchen and doing laundry. 1212 Prairie Street.
Time: 10:45 am to 2:00 pm
#: 10 people
Age: 16 or older, 13-15 if with a parent
To join this team, please email Team Leader Ragna Case at


New Hope Housing
New Hope Housing provides permanent supportive housing to the homeless and those on very limited incomes. This team will be hosting a party for the residents of this apartment complex, including food, games, and fun! 6311 Gulf Freeway. Please note that this a different New Hope Housing location than the Perry St. location that we visited last Serve Sunday. They wanted to share the love with all their residents!
Time: 10:30 am to 1:00 pm
#: 30 people
Age: Children, Youth, and Adults
To join this team, please email Team Leader Jim Mercurio at


Vita-Living – Hazen House
Vita-Living, Inc. provides lifelong support to almost 500 individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities in the Houston area. Hazen House is a small group home in the Sharpstown neighborhood. This team will be doing beautification work as well as hanging out and playing games with the residents. 8322 Hazen St.
Time: 1:30 pm to 3:30 pm
#: 12 people
Age: Adults
To join this team, please email Team Leader Alex Easley at


On-Campus Project
This team will meet on Palmer campus in the Parish Hall between the 9:00 and 11:00 services. There will be many opportunities to serve, including baking cookies and making cards for the teachers and staff of Archway Academy; sorting canned goods and clothing for the Emergency Aid Coalition; and collecting soccer cleats (new or used) and athletic clothes (new) for the children of the diocesan schools in Costa Rica (ages 7-12). Please also bring in backpacks (new or used) to be distributed by the Emergency Aid Coalition.
Time: 10:00 am
#: No limit!
Age: Children, Youth, and Adults
To join this team, email Team Leader Roger Hutchison at


Fun With Our Refugee Family
Palmer is blessed to co-sponsor the Kabionas, a Congolese refugee family who have recently arrived in Houston after years in a refugee camp in Tanzania. Join us for an afternoon of fun with this family! This opportunity is ideal for families with young children.
Time: 10:00–11:00 am
#: 12
Age: Children, Youth, and Adults!
To join this team, email Team Leader Frances Vonk at


Choir Hymn Sing at Nursing Home
This team will sing hymns and well-known songs with the residents of Belmont Village Nursing Home. 2929 W. Holcombe.
Time: 3:00 to 4:30 pm
#: 25
Age: Children, Youth, and Adults!
To join this team, email Team Leader Johnna Kincaid at


This Serve Sunday, we are gathering backpacks (new or used), kids’ soccer cleats (new or used), and kids’ athletic clothes (new).

Youth Acolyte Training

If you are in 4th-12th grade, or know someone who is, I invite you to join us in the church (Nave) after the 9:00 service on Sunday, August 21st for Youth Acolyte training! We will talk about the different roles and do some practicing. Current acolytes are strongly encouraged to attend as a refresher. Acolytes will serve at the 9:00 service approximately once every 3-4 weeks. If you have any questions, please contact me, Margie French, at or 281-687-7155.

PARISH-WIDE Picnic & Pool Party!

Colored inflatable beach ball

Palmer PARISH-WIDE Picnic and Pool Party
Saturday, August 27, 2016 – 7:30–9:30PM
Colonial Park Pool | West University Place


Come one, Come ALL to our 1st Annual Fall Kick-Off Pool Party FOR THE ENTIRE PARISH!
This is a great way to kick off the fall season, reconnect with friends you’ve missed over the summer, meet new friends, and celebrate what it means to be a Palmer! Come out and join the fun on Saturday, August 27th, from 7:30-9:00 p.m. at the Colonial Park Pool in West University—4130 Byron Street 77005. Children, youth, and adults of ALL ages are invited! Please bring a plate of goodies to share. There will be lots of food, fun, and fellowship! Palmer will provide nonalcoholic beverages but you are invited to BYOB if you would like.


Palmer Downtown Lunch |August 29

Join us Monday, August 29 at noon at Treebeards inside Christ Church Cathedral for fellowship among Palmers who live or work downtown, or anyone who finds themselves downtown for the lunch hour. Look for the reserved Palmer tables in the back. This is an informal gathering the last Monday of each month (except December and May). Feel free to bring a friend, and we look forward to seeing you!

Welcome our new Associate Rector | The Rev’d Liz Parker


Parker-Liz & AndyIt is with great joy that we are able to announce this week that The Rev’d Liz Parker will be coming to Palmer on September 1 as our new Associate Rector. Liz is a 1976 graduate of Pennsylvania State University, where she studied theater. She is also a 1988 graduate of Yale Divinity School, where she met her husband, The Rev’d Andy Parker, who is a native Texan and also an Episcopal priest. For the last 15 years, they have shared pastoral leadership of St. Timothy’s Episcopal Church in Lake Jackson, Texas, where their three sons grew into adulthood. Prior to that, Liz served on the clergy staff of St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church & School in Amarillo for eight years and clergy staff of the Episcopal Church of the Heavenly Rest in Abilene for three and a half years

Although Liz will not officially begin her duties until the beginning of September, you will first have the opportunity to be introduced to her at our morning liturgies on Serve Sunday, August 21. That is also the day that we will return to our regular Sunday worship schedule with Holy Eucharist at 7:45, 9:00, and 11:00 a.m. in the church and 6:30 p.m. in St. Bede’s Chapel. While that evening service is organized by the college chaplain for the students and faculty of Rice University, it’s open to all of us and, in fact, recorded in our parish register. So choose a service to attend and join us as we give thanks to God for Liz’s call to Palmer

Look for a letter in the mail soon from the Rector with more details about this exciting announcement. In the meantime, join us in praying for Liz as she prepares to come here:

O God, watch over Liz in all her going out and her coming in; keep all evil away from her door; and let her share the hospitality of the Lord’s Table at Palmer Memorial Episcopal Church, that she and all those who are fed there may know your love and peace. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.

Community of Hope Training

If you are interested in pastoral care ministry, seeking training, and connecting with others in the community who are serving and making visits beyond our walls, please contact Linda Shelton for information about Community of Hope. A new training session will be offered this fall through our partnership with Christ the King Lutheran Church and deadline for applications will be August 8. Contact the Rev’d Linda Shelton at 713-529-6196 x116.

Baby Shower for Refugee Family

Palmer is joining with St. Christopher’s Episcopal Church to host a baby shower for Chantal, who is expecting a son in November. Diapers of all sizes are being collected as gifts, but other practical gifts such as infant sleepers, t-shirts, etc. are also welcome and needed. Please join us, or if you wish to give a gift, they may be left in the church office. Please mark with my name. Contact Francis Vonk / for questions.

Walking the Mourners’ Path

A small group for those mourning the death of a loved one is currently interviewing participants for a new group. If you would like information for yourself or someone you know, please contact Linda Shelton 713-529-6196×116.

“Good News” from the Costa Rica Trip

Recently, a group of parishioners from Palmer went on a life-changing Mission Trip to Costa Rica. Click here to read a firsthand account of their experience written by Catherine Thompson.

2016 Stewardship Update

We’d like to provide a quick update on how we are tracking in fulfillment of our 2016 pledges. As of May 31st, 43% of the $1.5 million of pledges has been received, in line with month-to-date planning. Thank you for your generosity! With a tight 2016 budget, we are depending on every dollar coming in. During the summer months which may include holiday travel, we remind you that you can utilize “MyPalmer” for online payments or send checks to the church office to keep your giving current.

Call for Art | HOPE

A new art exhibit “Hope” is planned for for August 21–October 16, 2016. All 2D media is welcome. Please contact Sherry Byrd at or Jackie Campbell at for information on how to submit your entries. Deadline is August 19 for submissions.


EAC needs funds this month for back-to-school supplies

The Emergency Aid Coalition (EAC) invites you to join them in their “Annual Backpacks, School Supplies and Uniform Distribution” to over 1300 underserved children. Donate funds so EAC may purchase the correct items for each age group and help these students put their “best foot forward” with new supplies and with smiles on their faces as they begin the new school year. Go to for more information or make checks to Palmer and note EAC in the notation line.

New groups forming | Outreach Council and Ministry to Seniors & Older Adults

Outreach — A new council is forming to support our current outreach ministries, act on future plans, and plan Serve Sundays. If you have a heart for service beyond our walls, would like to be part of supporting Palmer’s outreach initiatives in the future, or want to share some ideas, we want to hear from you.

Senior Ministry — A small sub-committee of the Pastoral Care Council is forming to explore special needs of and ministry opportunities for serving older adults within and outside the walls of Palmer. Your ideas, knowledge of resources, experiences, and awareness of challenges are needed as we plan for future ministry.

Contact Linda Shelton at or 713-529-6196×116 for more information.

Travel toiletries benefit the Star of Hope & Ben Taub

Remember that your small travel size toiletries are much needed at the Star of Hope and our county hospitals. Old towels of various sizes are also sought. Bring them to the basket in the hallway near the reception area and we will deliver them.

Summer “Occasional Choir” dates

All are invited to join the Palmer choir for the summer occasional choir on the following dates:

  • August 7
  • August 14
  • August 21

Anyone from the congregation who is not able to sing with the choir during the school year is invited to join on Sunday mornings. There are no regular Wednesday night rehearsals in the summer. Please arrive at 9:15 am for the 10:00 am services on Sunday.

Come sing with us this summer!


Summer Worship Schedule

This Sunday, May 29 our summer worship schedule begins. Through mid-August, our Sunday morning liturgies will include Holy Eucharist, Rite I, at 8:00 a.m. and Holy Eucharist, Rite II, at 10:00 a.m. That early service will be a complete traditional liturgy and not one of the shortened versions that we use for all of our traditional services throughout most of the year due to time constraints. The mid-morning service, which brings together most Palmers who don’t always see one another during the rest of the year, will include the summer adult choir, a sung psalm, and limited use of incense (i.e., not filling the church with it while the gospel is read).

  8:00 AM | Holy Eucharist, Rite I | Nave

10:00 AM | Holy Eucharist, Rite II | Nave

In addition to those morning liturgies, there will also be a more informal service through mid-August in St. Bede’s Chapel. On most of those evenings, this service will include some bluegrass music from a banjo player. Individuals will have the opportunity to volunteer to participate, perhaps for the first time, in parts of the service as they arrive. Folks who do so might want to sign up for those ministries to serve at other services after the summer. This is a way of inviting people to offer part of their lives to the whole community gathered in worship and, above all, to the glory of God.

  5:00 PM | Holy Eucharist, Rite II | St. Bede’s Chapel 

Without that last part, all of these things are merely a clanging symbol because love is absent from our hearts. Fill our hearts with love divine, Lord Jesus!

Additionally, Palmer staff hours will switch to summer office hours on Tuesday, May  31: Monday–Thursday 9:00 am to 3:00 pm and Friday 9:00 am to noon. Regular office hours will resume August 29.

A gift for Fr. Dub & Suzanne Brooks

Father Dub Brooks recently celebrated his final Sunday of serving as the Senior Associate Rector of Palmer. It is a custom to thank a retiring priest with a monetary “purse.” There is still time to build this gift! Make your checks payable to “Palmer Memorial Episcopal Church” with “Fr. Brooks’ Retirement Purse” on the memo line and mail to the church office. Please be generous… Dub and Suzanne have given so much of themselves to us.

Summer Formation Offerings


Palmer’s much-beloved Sharing Our Faith discussions will resume on Sunday, June 5, 2016 during the 9:00 hour in Room A102. Sharing Our Faith will continue through Sunday, August 14th – except for Sunday, July 3rd.

This thought-provoking and fun class will explore the blessing of parenthood through conversation, fellowship, and laughter. While geared to families with younger children, this class is open to everyone: dual parents, single parents, stepparents, godparents, and grandparents. Time/Location: 9:00AM in Holy Cross Chapel

Palmer’s Sacred Arts Room will be open before and after the 10:00 AM service beginning June 5, 2016 for creative reflection, prayer, and occasional guided art experiences. A special thank you to Adrienne Bond and Sherry Byrd for your leadership with this. Please contact Adrienne Bond at if you are interested in learning more about this special offering.

Photos | Costa Rica mission trip

mission trip 2016-64

More photos to follow this week! View the photos here.