COME STAY GROW GIVE:
Last year these four simple words captured the theme of the 2019 Annual Appeal as we embarked on our strategical planning program with Wellspring Consulting. Over many months, we have worked together to ask what makes our Parish so special, what must be preserved, and what needs to change. It has been lay-led from the start and we have consulted over 1200 people, and many of them multiple times. Our strategic plan is a joint effort with a common vision and you can be part of that as we move to implement it.
The four words, COME STAY GROW GIVE, will now be expressed in a series of action plans as we move forward to build on a rich heritage of tradition and commitment. I need your commitment to this vision more than ever as we seek to live out our common life to worship, love and serve our Lord Jesus Christ through the Anglican tradition and our unique choral heritage.
What better time for us to step forward in confidence than with the 100th anniversary of the founding of our Choir School. Saint Thomas Church and its Choir School is a story of success in the face of many challenges and we will be all the stronger as we move forward together in unity of purpose and with bonds of love.
Please join Alison and me as we pledge to the 2020 Annual Appeal which provides needed funds to our Operating Budget. If you have pledged before, thank you and I hope you will feel inspired to do so again, as generously as possible. If you have never pledged, I invite to join the more than 500 other Saint Thomas pledgers who show their faith and loyalty to the church through a pledge to the Annual Appeal.
With best wishes,
You should be immensely proud of the achievements underway at Saint Thomas Church and our beloved Choir School.
We are experiencing a revival that is awakening the soul of this place and it is just the beginning. At every turn, our parish is evolving and the campaign for a successful future is taking hold. People feel a renewed sense of belonging and our collective identity is growing stronger every day.
As we move forward with implementing our strategic plan, our progress will be measured against five tangible goals: financial sustainability, belonging
and trust, congregational development, visibility, operations and infrastructure. If we can implement these goals properly, our parish will continue to thrive
– yet it begins with the Annual Appeal campaign.
Nowhere in this city, or country, can one experience the majesty of the liturgical and musical excellence offered at Saint Thomas. Our ability to promulgate the Anglican choral tradition is exceptional, but we need your help to sustain it. With an operating budget of almost $12.5 million (including $3 million for the Choir School), donations from parishioners and friends support 20 percent of our total expenses.
We have increased these contributions over the last several years, but we can do better.
On behalf of the 2020 Annual Appeal Committee, please join us in financially supporting this remarkable community. Our Church, Choir School, and Music ministries are transforming lives and we are commanded to ensure that our mission endures for generations. The money we raise together serves to strengthen the financial fabric of this irreplaceable institution and it merits our time and treasure.
2020 Annual Appeal Committee Chair
Saint Thomas Church Fifth Avenue is a parish church of the Episcopal Diocese of New York. Renowned for its liturgy and choral music, our Rector, The Reverend Canon Carl F. Turner, leads a team of clergy and staff who are committed to excellence in preaching, education, and pastoral care. The church is open every day of the year and the Eucharist is celebrated daily.
The Saint Thomas Choir School was founded in 1919 and plays a vital role in the life of the church. The school is the only church-affiliated residential choir school for boys in the United States and one of only two such schools in the English-speaking world. Headmaster Charles F. Wallace ensures that the 30 boys in grades 3 through 8 receive a stimulating and nurturing education in a Christian environment. In addition to academics and sports, each boy receives musical training in the Anglican tradition and participates in special travel and extra-curricular activities. Choristers attend regardless of ability to pay and their lives are transformed through this extraordinary experience.
The Saint Thomas Choir of Men and Boys is known throughout the world. The Choir has developed an international reputation as one of the leading ensembles in the Anglican choral tradition. Under the direction of Jeremy Filsell, renowned pianist, organist and teacher, the Choir of men and boys sings at five weekly worship services and prepares over four hundred pieces of sacred music a year. The Choir also offers a full concert series each year and has toured throughout the United States and Europe