Christmas 2011 was a turning point at St. Augustine’s Episcopal Church in Homer.
On this particular holiday with parishioners out of state, snowy weather and illness, the church closed its red door on the very night when every church’s door should be open, Christmas Eve.
The church that the Reverend Joe and Elizabeth Aprill foresaw since the 1950s and worked to establish with hope and perseverance, had survived many problems including meeting locations, fluctuating congregation size, and lack of a regular priest.
With a sense of determination, the present St. Augustine’s congregation decided that would not happen again. The year 2012 began with a dedicated group of people willing to take lay leader training, provide worship services and proceed with licensing from the Episcopal Diocese of Alaska.
The Reverend Katherine Hunt from Anchorage started the training in March until her health prevented future sessions. The Reverend Gail Loken, also from Christ Church in Anchorage, carried on the next set of trainings with continued vigor. St. Augustine’s Senior Warden, Greg Guy, then assisted with weekly practice sessions reviewing service requirements, setting up bulletins and selecting sermons.
Long-time St. Augustine’s parishioner, Judy Mullikin, was invaluable with an extensive knowledge and ability to guide the lay leaders continually back to the Book of Common Prayer when questions arose. Each of these people devoted many hours to help the lay leaders nurture their potential leadership skills. All of the trainers’ time was sincerely appreciated.
Now, in 2013, the Senior Warden has a rotation of qualified lay leaders to call upon for services when a priest is not available.
Holy Eucharist is held the first Sunday of the month with The Reverend Judith Lethin, from Seldovia, weather permitting.
Morning Prayer Lunch is on the third Sunday of
each month with the meal provided by the congregation.
A prayer labyrinth is available for use next to our garden where all food is produced for the Homer Community Food Pantry.
With renewed congregational vigor and regular services, St. Augustine’s welcomes all to its house of prayer. The Sunday service is at 11 a.m. The church is located at 619 Sterling Highway. Those who plan to attend with children and want them to attend Sunday School are asked to call Judy Mullikin in advance at 235-8975. For more information, call 235-1225.