ST. ANDREW'S Episcopal Church celebrated St. Andrew's Day a day late this year - but with a parade from Bushy Park Elementary School to the congregation's new home in Glenwood.
A bagpiper led the procession, followed by a horse trailer carrying the altar that had been used for seven years at Bushy Park. A convoy made up of the entire congregation followed behind.
About 280 people filled the new Parish House in Glenwood to enjoy the first service held by the 22-year-old church in its own building.
"It's really wonderful for us to have our own space so that we can have a permanent presence in the community," said Lee Ann Tolzmann, assistant to the rector.
St. Andrew's was founded by St. Peter's Episcopal Church of Ellicott City on St. Andrew's Day - Nov. 30, 1980. "There was a need for a location to be in western Howard County," Tolzmann said.
The congregation met at historic Union Chapel in Glenwood. "It's small and intimate," Tolzmann said.
But St. Andrew's quickly outgrew the space and, in 1996, added services at Bushy Park Elementary School.
Church members found that a school was not an ideal location to hold church services. They had to take the altar and platforms into the building each week.
"People carried everything in and out with a horse trailer," Tolzmann said. The altar and platforms were stored in the trailer during the week.
In 1997, St. Andrew's purchased a 10-acre tract near Union Chapel, and began construction of the multipurpose Parish House. Church members helped with fund raising, financing, planning, construction, landscaping and decorating the building.
"We have a huge meeting space [now] that we use for worship," Tolzmann said of the finished structure. "We plan to build a sanctuary within the next five years."
The Rev. Harry Brunett arrived at St. Andrew's in 1992 as vicar, and serves as the church's rector.
St. Andrew's holds services at Union Chapel at 8 a.m. and 11:15 a.m. Sundays. Services at the Parish House are at 9:15 a.m. Journeys Community, an outreach program of St. Andrew's, meets at 10 a.m. Sundays at Clemens Crossing Elementary School in Columbia.
The St. Andrew's Parish House is at 2892 U.S. 97. Information: 410-489-4035.
The PTSAs of River Hill and Atholton high schools invite the public for an evening for women at 7:30 Jan. 16 in the River Hill media center.
"Women to Women" will provide guidance on well-woman care and sexuality for teen-age girls, and give women of all ages an opportunity to share insights on being a woman. Health care professionals and staff members of Contemporary Health for Women in Clarksville will discuss well-woman care, sexually transmitted diseases, skin care, nutrition and self-esteem.
Psychotherapist Debbie Martin, nutritionist Arlene Swantko, aesthetician Joyce Steedman, nurse-practitioner Jane Kapustin and nurse-midwife Lisa Starr will share their expertise.
Jean Aziz and Peggy Stout, who have co-written a series of books featuring quotes from average women, will share their experience collecting the personal narratives they used for their first book, Wise Women Speak to the Woman Turning Thirty. The authors will be available for book signing.
Information: Lorraine Seelaus, 410-531-9990 or Shel Kelley, 410-531-1108.
Glenelg resident Geri Hastings has been named Maryland's Social Studies Teacher of the Year.
Hastings teaches at Catonsville High School and is chairwoman of the school's social studies department. She also oversees SAT and PSAT preparation programs at the school.
Principal Rob Tomback and former Catonsville High School teacher Bruce Lesh nominated her for the honor.
The award was a surprise for the longtime teacher: Hastings didn't know she had been nominated until she learned that she had won.
River Hill High School's Elizabeth Shin has been selected by the National Association for Music Education to play cello in the All-Eastern Honor Orchestra. She is one of seven Maryland students selected for the ensemble.
Elizabeth will be one of about 150 students who will attend a three-day rehearsal, followed by a concert March 9 at the Veterans Memorial Auditorium in Providence, R.I.
She will prepare for her part with assistance from River Hill orchestra director Rosemary Lather.
Time to say goodbye
After writing for The Sun for almost three years, this is my final column. I have enjoyed meeting all of you - my neighbors and friends - and sharing your stories. I'm sure I'll see many of you in the future at the church bazaars, the summer picnics, the school events, and all the places we meet each other in western Howard County.