When the 10:00 a.m. Sunday service is over, almost everyone adjourns to the hall to chat over tea or coffee. Those who are able take turns in providing baking, and on most Sundays the conversation lasts for about an hour. The willingness of busy people to take so long to sit with their neighbours reflects the importance of this social time. All are aware that some older single folk find this a particularly welcome opportunity for seeing and talking to others. Apart from friendly conversation, coffee time is used to make announcements, to welcome visitors, and to celebrate such events as retirements, anniversaries, baptisms, and confirmations. More festive gatherings follow such evening events as the Advent service of Lessons and Carols, and Candlemas, when the parish welcomes the theological students of the College of Emmanuel and St. Chad. As well, each service of Evensong through the year is followed by a pot luck supper - there is always plenty of food, and all are welcome!
All Saints has been involved in Outreach in their local community and in the world community since its very existence. This summary will deal with Christian Outreach at All Saints over the past decade to the present time.
Parishioners have long supported the outreach done by PWRDF, who do wonderful work in the world community. All Saints outreach has also focused upon the Bishop Patrick Fund, which supported the work of Bishop Patrick and the needs of his Diocese in Masasi. All Saints hosted a fund raising send off for Bishop Patrick, following his stay in Saskatoon.
All Saints decided to strike a Local Christian Outreach Committee in late 2009. It began with two members and has grown to four members. All Saints small, generous and encouraging congregation along with the present and past priests provided the needed support to keep our local outreach both proceeding and succeeding.
All Saints has long supported Interval House in Saskatoon with Christmas bags of essential items for women and children fleeing from abusive situations with little more than the clothes on their back. Also, support of the Saskatoon Food Bank and Learning Center has been relentless with non-perishable food items and clothing items being delivered at least once a year if not more often. During the Lenten Outreach of 2014, we learned a great deal more about The Learning Center portion of the Saskatoon Food Bank. We focused our support on the program called Creating Opportunities, which provides people of all ages with an opportunity to enhance literacy skills while providing the needed skills and contacts to enter the work force and live an independent life.
All Saints supported the needs of Mayfair Community School through the Saskatoon Public Board of Education for 2 years. Our particular focus was to raise funds to support the purchase of literacy materials. Under the direction of Community School Coordinator we also gathered gently used clothing and small household goods and linens for the store which was housed at the school and used by needy families. When Mayfair Community School chose in 2014 to no longer respond to our involvement, we placed our support behind the Newcomers Group, who needed money to purchase special lifestyle dictionaries and other emergent reading material for new immigrant children attending school and for their family learning English. (This group is also part of the Saskatoon Public Board of Education.)
We have previously launched three Outreach sessions each calendar year with a special coffee hour presented by the Outreach Committee following the morning service. Our congregation loves this time of fellowship. The weekly fellowship is briefly interrupted by a speaker related to the Outreach focus being launched. Each Outreach session lasts 3 - 4 weeks and concludes with another special coffee hour again presented by the Outreach Committe.
The Committee has now decided to launch two formal Outreach sessions rather than three sessions as in previous years. We will continue with the special coffee hour and also put up a Mitten Tree for December & January. We will very likely continue our very long history with Interval House.
Last of all, it is important to note that a group known as the Serendipity Quilters meet in our lower church hall at least once a month. This group then donates the quilts they have made to a variety of groups throughout the city including children and families in need and families who have experienced a disaster. Once yearly this group holds a strawberry tea and donates the profits (less their expenses) to All Saints.
As long as our doors remain open so must our hearts to the needs of our brothers and sisters in Christ. All Saints is ever mindful of the needs of others. The Local Christian Outreach Committee are very thankful to our parish.