Parish News

Click here to view the Parish Calendar for a full listing of events!

General Community News

Christmas Flowers: One correction and two additions should be mentioned: “in thanksgiving for the friendship of Heidi and Michael Brenner by Larry and Faye Beach” / “in loving memory of Elizabeth and Dean Avery, and Jane and Dick Turner by Rick and Marilyn Turner” / “in thanksgiving for their children, Alex, Ben, and Madeline, by Jeff and Carol Stratton.”

Save the Date: Parish Meeting // On Wednesday, January 24, a parish-wide meeting will be held after a 6:00 pm dinner in the parish hall. Childcare will be provided in the nursery. Please sign-up for the parish supper should you wish to eat before hand. However, all are invited to attend once dinner finished at approximately 6:45/7:00 pm.

The Lunch Bunch: January Special Edition // Tuesday, January 16, 11:30 pm // Join The Lunch Bunch in a special edition featuring Jim Haslam, Sr.! From the history of the Governors of Tennessee to UT football, come hear Jim Haslam, Sr. deliver an engaging lunchtime presentation. Bring $2, and an appetizer, side dish, or dessert with enough to share. RSVP in the parish office or by emailing It is vital to know everyone who is attending so that we may fill everyone’s tummy!

Save the Date: Mardi Gras // Save the date! Tuesday, February 13, is Mardi Gras night at Ascension. Your favorite food, auction items, and music will be back to give you a heavy dose of celebration before Lent. Block off the whole night as you eat, dance, and laugh your way through the evening.

A Valentine’s Day Surprise: Chocolate Dipped Strawberries from LAMBs Minsitry // The LAMBS ministry is offering Valentine’s Day gift boxes of delicious chocolate-dipped fresh strawberries for sale in time for Valentine’s Day giving and in support of the Pantry for Feeding Pets.  All. proceeds will purchase pet foods for distribution through the FISH pantry to needy families. Pre-orders, including payment, will be taken in the Church foyer on the following Sundays:  January 28 and February 4.  All pre-ordered, pre-paid gift boxes will be available for pick-up in the Church foyer on Sunday, February 11 – just in time for February 14! Pricing for the gift boxes of strawberries will be available on Sunday, January 28.  Questions:  please contact the

VMC Dinner Outreach Opportunity // The once-monthly Ascension hosted VMC dinner rotation is in need of additional ministries to assist with preparing and serving dinner at the Volunteer Ministry Center. Minimal labor is involved, only food preparation and serving. Imagine, a dinner you can cook without cleaning up! For more information, read the poster outside of Andrew Morehead’s office or email Bert Ackermann at, or Allen Douglass at for further information.

Adult Sunday School

The Forum // Parish Hall-Old Transept // Continuing with their study from last semester, The Good Book by Peter Gomes.

The Seekers // Room 102 // An open “drop-in” style Sunday School with no preparation or previous reading required. Various speakers and topics are chosen by the class. Just bring an inquisitive mind!

The Sojourners // Parish Hall-New Transept // Beginning this semester with a study of Being Christian by Rowan Williams. Make sure to pick up a copy from your favorite retailer and join the discussion. However, everyone is welcome regardless of whether you’ve read the book or not; it will be presented in such a manner that everyone will be able to participate. We will begin the year with some yummy snacks, so come to class hungry, i.e., skip breakfast.

Contemplative Prayer // Library // A relaxing and loving time of what Jesus referred to as “prayer in secret.” We begin with twenty minutes of silent prayer, letting God come into our hearts, followed by discussion and contemplation from read-aloud portions of the book Tears of An Innocent God by Elias Marechal. No prior reading or preparation is required.

Children’s News

Date Night // Date Night will take place Friday, January 12. Please RSVP to Dinner will be served. Please bring pizza donation money.

Tweens are Back! // The Tween Youth Group’s first meeting of 2018 will be January 12, from 6:00-9:00 pm. Kids in grades 3-5 are welcome.

Girls’ Reading Crew is Back! // We will being 2018 with the beloved book, Anne of Green Gables, by L. M. Montgomery. This book group is open to girls in grades 4-6. We will begin on January 28, from 4:00-5:00 pm in the garden room and continue on February 4, 11, and 18. If you need a copy of the book, please let Megan Alden known by January 15 (

Youth News

Ascension Youth Group // Ascension Youth Group programming resumes tonight at 6:00 pm with a Movie Night!

Grace Point Winter Sessions // Grace Point Camp is a camp and retreat center owned by the Diocese of East Tennessee. They are hosting two Winter Sessions for teens: For Grades 9-12, January 12-15, 2018 and for Grades 6-8, February 2-4. To sign up, check out

Introducing Dinner Angels! // Introducing Dinner Angels, a program in which our parishioners and parents provide meals for our hungry teens during youth group. Our teens have expressed a desire to add some variety to their meals during AYG meetings. Parents and other parishioners are invited to sign up and share in this service and fellowship opportunity. Want to try out a new recipe? Have a flair in the kitchen? Just want to feed a small crowd? We welcome home-cooked meals and catered meals. Our sign-ups, details, and schedule are available online.

Wednesday Night – Food for Body and Soul

Parish Supper // Wednesday, January 10, 6:00 pm // The Wednesday evening parish supper will feature beef stroganoff lasagna, green beans, mixed greens salad with walnuts, cranberries, and feta cheese, bread, and dessert. The price is $10/adult, $5/child, and $25/family maximum. Sign-up in the parish office by Tuesday, January 9, or by emailing

Wednesday Night Programming // Following Dinner at 6:45 pm // Our semester kick-off will feature Bishop Brian Cole joining us to discuss and reflect on Thomas Merton’s most famous prayer, found in his book Thoughts in Solitude: “My Lord God, I have no idea where I am going. I do not see the road ahead of me. I cannot know for certain where it will end. Nor do I really know myself, and the fact that I think that I am following your will does not mean that I am actually doing so. But I believe that the desire to please you does in fact please you. And I hope I have that desire in all that I am doing. I hope that I will never do anything apart from that desire. And I know that if I do this you will lead me by the right road, though I may know nothing about it. Therefore will I trust you always, though I may seem to be lost and in the shadow of death. I will not fear, for you are ever with me, and you will never leave me to face my perils alone.” In speaking about his own spiritual journey, Bishop Brian has said that “Thomas Merton made me an Episcopalian.”

Worship // Two worship opportunities are available on Wednesday evenings. Evening Prayer begins at 5:45 pm in the chapel and is finished in time for the parish supper. Or you can, at 6:30 pm in the Parlor, “Come Say Good Night to God!” Join Sr. Anna Kathleen for the daily office of Compline, a service of quietness and reflection at the end of the day for approximately 15 minutes. For those who desire, a period of approximately 20 minutes for contemplative prayer or meditation will follow.

Ascension Trekkers: Anniversary Hike // The Ascension Trekkers will go on their fourth anniversary hike on Saturday, January 20 to Middle Prong and Indian Flats Falls, leaving the church at 8:30 am.  This popular 8 mile hike is rated moderate in difficulty because of the length and because the immediate area to/from the falls is tricky.  Join the group for this interesting and fun winter outing.  RSVP to Emily Vreeland (

Please keep these individuals in your prayers this week:

Paul and Mary Lee Bergeron, Freddi Birdwell, Darlene Clark, Larry Crowson,
Anna Fraser, Joyce King, Martha and Allen Neel, Margaret Nelson,
Ned and Beth Patterson, Bobbye Reynolds, Donna Riggs, Caroline Schusterick

The Episcopal Church of the Ascension maintains two prayer lists. The first list is for parishioners, staff, and their immediate families, and prayers are offered for these people during Sunday services. Their names can be found on the white prayer board in the office area.

The second list includes additional names as requested by you. The people on this list are prayed for by members of those leading morning and evening prayer at the Daily Office. Names will remain on this list as needed for appropriate prayer support.

Ascension Cares – No One Walks Alone

Caring and compassion for fellow parishioners in need is central to our service to God and each other. All of our pastoral care ministries fall under the umbrella of the “Ascension Cares” ministry to ensure that ‘No One Walks Alone’ in times of spiritual or emotional crisis. This is facilitated by pastoral care leaders called shepherds. They see that the pastoral care needs in the community are met with one of Ascension’s many ministries. An email to your Shepherd team will go to the clergy as well.

Team 1 Last Names A-L:

This list is administered by Annette Burton and Bill Perry.

Team 2 Last Names M-Z:

This list is administered by Bettie Corey and Anna Fraser.

To volunteer for a caring ministry,
contact The Rev. Christopher Hogin at