Parish News

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

General Community News

The chancel flowers are given to the glory of God and in loving memory of Felder S. Weeks, what a difference you made, by Katie McHargue.

Chancel Flower Sign-ups // Narthex // The 2018 chancel flower sign-up board is in the narthex. You may sign up for one or two slots. The suggested donation amount for both flower arrangements is $150, or $75 for one. Please provide your name and phone number. You will be contacted at a later time by Linda Hawley for your dedication message. For questions or inquiries, please email Linda at

Save the Date: Parish Meeting, Finishing the Business Portion of the Annual 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!

Taking Donations: Mardi Gras // For this year’s Mardi Gras auction, we are focusing on the donation of gifts, talents, skills, services, or time in addition to items. You may be an expert cook hiding in the back of the transept, a wonderful dinner host waiting to throw the perfect party, or someone with a hidden gem vacation property. Whatever it may be, the Mardi Gras auction would love your donations. Items and services may be brought in to the church or put in written form and dropped off at the parish office. For questions about your donation, email The Rev. Brett Backus at

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:

Middle School Dinners:

High School Dinners:

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.

The Sisterhood Heads to a Favorite: Altruda’s // Thursday, January 18, 6:00 pm, 125 N. Peters Road // Happy New Year to the Ascension Sisterhood! Our first “Girls’ Night Out” will be at 6:00 pm on Thursday, January 18, at Altruda’s Italian Restaurant, located at 125 N. Peters Road. We look forward to seeing you there. Please RSVP to Charlotte Wood at 615-594-1781 by Tuesday, January 16.

Quaker Steak and Lube Fundraiser // Come eat dinner at Quaker Steak and Lube on Monday, January 29, from 5:00-9:00 pm, as 20% of all money spent will go to help pay for all children participating in the Ascension Parish-wide Kanuga Retreat this Spring. Quaker Steak and Lube is located at 8355 Kingston Pike, Knoxville, TN, next door to Rooms to Go. Remember: The Ascension Parish-Wide Retreat is for the entire parish and all are invited to attend!

Adult Sunday School

All Sunday School classes are open to everyone! It is not necessary to have read the books prior to attending, as each Sunday School class presents the material in such a manner as everyone can participate.

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 // Continuing 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.

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

Tweens: Project Linus // The Tween Youth Group will meet next Sunday, January 21, from 5:00-6:30 pm for dinner and blanket making for Project Linus! A perfect combo for a winter day and a wonderful service project.

Girls’ Reading Crew is Back! // We will begin 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

Sunday School // Teen Sunday School meets today at 9:15 am in the youth room.

AYG Meetings // AYG for High School will meet tonight at 6:00 pm in the Youth Room. AYG for Middle School will meet Wednesday at 6:30 pm in the Youth Room.

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

AYG Lock-ins // We are having an AYG Lock-in! Details are still in the works, but there will be dinner, snacks, games, and fellowship! We are asking that all interested teens please RSVP to GiGi by the Monday before their Lock-in is scheduled. The Lock-ins will run from 6:00 pm Friday to 8:00 am Saturday. We will need release forms for all teens attending the lock-in. The High School lock-in will be February 2-3, and the Middle School lock-in will be February 9-10. Please email with any questions.

Happening #75 // Happening is a spiritual awakening and renewal weekend where high school youth have a face-to-face encounter with Christ through Christian community. This is done through a series of talks given by youth about their experiences in faith and life. It’s honest. It’s up front. Happening #75 is February 23-25. Registration is available online thru January 31:

AYG High School Mission Trip 2018 // Our Mission Trip for 2018 will be the week of July 22-27 and we will be serving communities along the Eastern Shore of Virginia through YouthWorks. Details are still in the works including fundraising. Cost to our teens will be $299 per person. To secure your spot, a $99 deposit and your AYG release forms will need to be turned in no later than Monday, February 12. This trip is open to our teens currently in grades 8-12. Please email with any questions.

Wednesday Night – Food for Body and Soul

Parish Supper // Wednesday, January 17, 6:00 pm // The Wednesday evening parish supper will feature chicken, artichoke, and rice casserole, roasted asparagus, tomatoes, and onions, mixed greens salad with mandarin oranges 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 16, or by emailing

Wednesday Night Programming // Following Dinner at 6:45 pm // This Wednesday’s programming will feature a showing of The Lion, The Witch, and The Wardrobe along with a “Candlelight Theology” discussion led by The Rev. Christopher Hogin.

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.