Late News/Announcements/Upcoming Events


Struggling families in Contra Costa County trying to make ends meet often don’t have enough during the holidays.  Through your kindness, you can be a part of helping to put a smile on a child’s face and help ease the financial burden on the family this Christmas season.  Please bring your new, unwrapped gift for children or teens to St. Anselm’s no later than Tuesday, December 5th.   Suggested gifts are listed on the flyer inserted in today’s service leaflet.  Please no books, toy guns, knives, bow/arrows! 


Outreach Sunday is next Sunday, December 10th. Be sure to come and indicate your preferences among the charities we support. After both the 8 o’clock and 10 o’clock services that day, you’ll get to view the poster boards, created by the charities, and “vote” with tickets to determine what percent of our outreach funds will go to each of the charities. All individuals will be given tickets to distribute – this means our young people too! Please come and participate.


Breakfast will be served following the 8:00 a.m. and 10:00 a.m. services on December 17th.  Let’s take this opportunity to celebrate the season and to enjoy each other’s company.  If you would like to help by making an egg casserole or biscuits, please contact Sara Nelson at


 Did you know that weekly Yoga classes are held in Jackson Hall every Wednesday morning starting at 9:30 a.m.  Classes last an hour and cost $10/session. Please feel free to contact Anne Brown ( if you have any questions.

Join in the fun and get a great start to your day!


Neighbor to Neighbor Interfaith Women’s Groups are inviting women of all faiths to join with them on Thursday, December 7 for an Advent Celebration, “Bringing Light into a Darkened World.”   It will be held at the Lafayette-Orinda Presbyterian Church (LOPC), 49 Knox Drive, Lafayette, from 7 to 8:30 pm with refreshments and conversation to follow.   Women from Christian, Muslim, and Jewish congregations will share their insights through Scripture, music, poetry, and personal stories.   If you are interested or want to hear more, get in touch with Anne Brown, 925-788-0664 or


Outreach Sunday is coming up on December 10th. Be sure to come and indicate your preferences among the charities we support. After both the 8 o’clock and 10 o’clock services that day, you’ll get to view the poster boards, created by the charities, and “vote” with tickets to determine what percent of our outreach funds will go to each of the charities. All individuals will be given tickets to distribute – this means our young people too! Please come and participate.


We are seeking bakers for Art Clarke’s Memorial Reception in Jackson Hall on December 16th, immediately follow the 2:00 p.m. memorial service.  For those interested in helping, we can use a dessert items to share which you may bring to Jackson Hall before the service.  If anyone is interested, Art’s legendary brownie recipe is provided below.  If you have any questions, please contact Eva Woo at


  • 1 pound unsalted butter
  • 1 pound plus 12 ounces semisweet chocolate chips
  • 6 ounces unsweetened chocolate
  • 6 extra-large eggs
  • 3 tablespoons instant coffee granules
  • 2 tablespoons pure vanilla extract
  • 2 1/4 cups sugar
  • 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3 cups chopped walnuts


Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Butter and flour a 12 x 18 x 1-inch baking sheet.

Melt together the butter, 1 pound of chocolate chips, and the unsweetened chocolate in a medium bowl over simmering water. Allow to cool slightly. In a large bowl, stir (do not beat) together the eggs, coffee granules, vanilla, and sugar. Stir the warm chocolate mixture into the egg mixture and allow to cool to room temperature.

In a medium bowl, sift together 1 cup of flour, the baking powder, and salt. Add to the cooled chocolate mixture. Toss the walnuts and 12 ounces of chocolate chips in a medium bowl with 1/4 cup of flour, then add them to the chocolate batter. Pour into the baking sheet.

Bake for 20 minutes, then tap the baking sheet against the oven shelf to force the air to escape from between the pan and the brownie dough. Bake for about 15 minutes, until a toothpick comes out clean. Do not overbake! Allow to cool thoroughly, refrigerate, and cut into squares.


Sometimes, Art would substitute M and M’s for some of the chocolate chips.


St. Anselm’s Ministry for Seniors provides assistance for those in our congregation who need rides, particularly to church on Sundays.    We also try to be available for those who have to get to medical or other appointments.   Our original  volunteer sign-up list has become depleted, so we are asking for your help with rides as well as visits to those who may be housebound for whatever reason.    If you can help at all please contact Kelvin Booty — or 934-0114.


Maybe you aren’t able to be on the vestry or altar guild, or be a deanery delegate, but here’s a chance for you to serve the parish and get to know people at the same time – host our coffee hour following the 10 o’clock services in 2018.   [The 8 o’clockers manage to do this without fanfare!]

The Parish Life Commission is responsible for this part of St. Anselm’s ministry and we’re looking at a new way to ensure that we have hosts signed up for at least six months, if not the whole year.  In order for this to work we would need each host to be willing to commit to TWO hostings a year, so that we can establish our roster.  We would like to hear from you about this relatively easy assignment – after all,  you’re at church anyway, aren’t you?!  Obviously there are going to be certain dates which will and won’t work for people, but we can work that out later in association also with the church’s annual activities.  We appreciate your support in many of the past years, but now we need your input for this plan in 2018.   Please email your views and willingness to sign up for TWO hostings in 2018 to Sheila Gorsuch –


St. Anselm’s Episcopal Church has an active Stephen Ministry group. The Stephen Ministers at St. Anselm’s are: Gene Bozorth, Naomi Chamberlain-Harris, Ina Merrill, Judy Peak, Gerry Starr, and Sara Swimmer. Vicki Pappas is the Stephen Ministry Leader. Stephen Ministers have received 50 hours of specialized training so that they can provide one-to-one Christian care to people who are experiencing grief, loneliness, divorce, hospitalization, job loss, and many other life difficulties. All care-giving relationships are absolutely confidential. We listen, care, encourage and pray for our Care Receivers. We walk alongside those who are going through a difficult time. We hope that you will consider asking for a Stephen Minister when you or someone you know has a need. It is not necessary for the person to be a member of St. Anselm’s. We also have a relationship with a consortium of churches so we have people from other churches who can act as Stephen Minsters for our church members. We are a small church, so some of you may be more comfortable with someone you don’t know. We also hope that you will consider becoming a Stephen Minister. For more information please speak with Father John or Vicki Pappas.




The Altar Guild would like you to know:

  • Opportunities to donate altar flowers in 2017 are still available!  Each week the Altar Guild provides beautiful flowers for our church.  By making a donation you can have these flowers dedicated to the memory of a loved one, in honor of a family member or simply to the glory of God.  Sign up chart and donation cards are located near the side door of the church (toward the garden.)
  • There is an opportunity for you to be more involved in the worship service without having to stand up in front of the whole congregation! Try the Altar Guild! Once per month you and your teammates meet on Saturday morning to  prepare the Sanctuary for Sundays’ services. On Sunday, you clean up after the service.  There is always an experienced member on hand to help out. All are welcome; parents who want their children to know more about the Episcopal service can create a family team. Altar Guild meets monthly, on the first Sunday of the month (except July and August) between services.  Contact Sally Morrison: 925-482-0267 or click here for more information.
We are trying something new in the Canterbury Tales. On a monthly basis we will publish what we are calling the “Recipe of the Month”.  Where do the recipes come from?  Anyone in the Parish is welcome and encouraged to submit as many recipes as they desire. Here are some guide lines:  Recipes must be easy to prepare for anyone with basic cooking skills, must not take too long to prepare (say 20 minutes or less), be aimed at the diner meal, be such that left overs for 1-2 nights will be available, and of course  must be nutritious and good tasting. Thanks in advance for your participation.  Please submit your recipes to Dick Orear by clicking here or by mail to Dick at 237 Overhill Road, Orinda, CA 94563.


Established in 1976, the Contra Costa Child Care Council is a nonprofit organization that is the only child care resource and referral agency serving all of Contra Costa.   Our mission is to provide leadership to promote and advance quality care and early education. Innovative programs, free or low cost services and child development expertise help parents work and children grow, learn and fulfill their potential.  Contact us for assistance and/or support our work for children and families (925)676-5442;

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