Christopher, Sheena and Malachi Richardson

Congratulations to the Rev. Christopher Richardson, assistant rector at St. Mark’s, Columbus, and his wife Sheena, on the birth of their son Malachi McKinley Richardson on Dec. 5.


Mary Carson

The Rev. Mary Carson

St. James, Westwood, is pleased to announce they have called the Rev. Mary Carson as Priest-in-charge. A graduate of Kenyon College and Bexley Hall Theological Seminary, Mary spent most of her twenty years of ordained ministry in the Diocese of Ohio, most recently as rector of Church of the Redeemer, Lorain. But it was time for this Southern Ohio girl to come home – Mary was born and raised in Hillsboro, where her father John Carson was long-time rector of St. Mary’s. Please join the people of St. James in welcoming Mary “back home!”


RTB Newport Mayor's AwardOver 150 volunteers came together in October for the same cause, to Rock the Block in Newport, Kentucky – at a neighborhood cleanup and repair event organized by Habitat For Humanity of Greater Cincinnati. The event was a huge success, with special thanks to the HOPE Coalition, a collaboration of five Episcopal congregations (Calvary, Clifton, St. Andrew’s, Evanston, Ascension & Holy Trinity, Wyoming, Christ Church Cathedral, and the Church of the Advent, Walnut Hills, led by the Rev. Jason Leo) that volunteer with HFHGC to build homes. Not only did the coalition provide over 15 volunteers, they also provided meals for EVERY volunteer at the event, and partial funding for the event t-shirts. On December 12, Habitat For Humanity of Greater Cincinnati was awarded the Mayor’s Award in Newport for the Rock The Block event, and the HOPE coalition was thanked publicly during the presentation. This coalition is a great example of service in our community. Thank you HOPE Coalition!


9781469626987Peter Williams, church historian at Holy Trinity, Oxford, has published a new book, Religion, Art, and Money: Episcopalians and American Culture from the Civil War to the Great Depression. According to the publisher, the University of North Carolina Press, Williams argues that wealthy, successful New York City Episcopalians “left a deep and lasting mark on American urban culture. Their sense of public responsibility derived from a sacramental theology that gave credit to the material realm as a vehicle for religious experience and moral formation, and they came to be distinguished by their participation in major aesthetic and social welfare endeavors.” Williams is Distinguished Professor Emeritus of Comparative Religion and American Studies at Miami University and is the author of several books. He is also a member of the General Board of Examining Chaplains. Religion, Art, and Money is available from the publisher at


St. James Belles and Whistles member Bill Whittle with the train display and a few of the delighted fans.

St. James Belles and Whistles member Bill Whittle with the train display and a few of the delighted fans.

St. James, Westwood, has a 20+-year tradition of setting up a large model train layout at Christmastime to delight both youngsters and the young of heart. Erected each year in the parish hall and dedicated to the people of St. James, it is a project of the St. James “Belles and Whistles,” a group of about 12 model train enthusiasts at the church.

The layout was designed more than twenty years ago by Belles and Whistles member Robert Mokren. Various members of the Belles and Whistles group own the locomotives and rolling stock. The present layout even includes Thomas the Tank Engine pulling the “Candy Cane Train”, which always stops in front of all the kids waiting for a candy cane! It is truly a wonder, spiced with a bit of magic, to watch a child at Christmastime, for there is nothing more precious and enduring than watching the eyes of a small child when they are happy!

~ Submitted by Bill Whittle, St. James Westwood


Members of the Knitting Circle at St. James, Piqua.

Members of the Knitting Circle at St. James, Piqua.

The Knitting Circle at St. James, Piqua, meets every Tuesday morning to knit and share in deep conversation on many different topics. The group consists of five to fifteen people, both church members and non-church members, and their purpose is to make prayer shawls for people with terminal or long term illnesses, broken hearts, grieving or people who just need some prayers. The Knitting Circle has been together for 10 years and has made many prayer shawls, which have been given to the Cancer Center at Wright Patterson AFB, community nursing homes, the V.A., Upper Valley Medical Center, local Senior Housing and to hundreds of individual people who need them. Each shawl includes a prayer to help the individual get through their day as they wrap themselves in the shawl.

scarf picsThe group has extended their talents to include making scarves for every kindergartener in the Piqua public school system. The group made about 300 scarves in 2015. The children made pictures of themselves wearing the scarves, and we posted them on the wall in our parish hall for everyone to see. The St. James knitters were excited to do the same in 2016 – 250 scarves were needed. The children received their scarves on their last day before the holiday break. In the coming year the knitting circle will make scarves for the students, and will also add another 50 scarves for the Riverside Disabled Adult Work Program.

The Knitting Circle was invited in 2016 to participate in Mainstreet Piqua’s Christmas on the Green by knitting scarves, and getting donations of new hats, gloves and mittens, to decorate the small trees downtown. Anyone who needs a hat, scarf, gloves or mittens is welcome to take one off the trees. St. James is proud and excited to be a part of this community project.

The St. James Knitting circle is supported mainly by monetary and yarn donations of church members and members of the knitting circle, but any donations of money or yarn are accepted from anywhere it should come from.

~ Submitted by Krista Abernathy, St. James, Piqua