News and Events




Deaconess Anna Ellison Butler Alexander

The only Black deaconess in the Episcopal Church, teacher and minister in southern Georgia.

Anna Ellison Butler Alexander (1865-1947) was born to recently emancipated slaves on Butler Plantation in MacIntosh County, Georgia. She was the first African-American set aside as a deaconess in the Episcopal Church in 1907. She founded Good Shepherd Church in rural Glynn County’s Pennick community where she taught children to read—by tradition, from the Book of Common Prayer and the Bible—in a one-room schoolhouse. The school was later expanded to two rooms with a loft where Anna lived. She ministered in Pennick for 53 years, leaving a legacy of love and devotion still felt in Glynn County. Deaconess Alexander served in difficult times, however. The diocese segregated her congregations in 1907 and African-American congregations were not invited to another diocesan convention until 1947. Similarly, it was only in the 1950s that a woman set aside as a deaconess was recognized as being in deacon’s orders. However, her witness—wearing the distinctive dress of a deaconess, traveling by foot from Brunswick through Darien to Pennick, showing care and love for all whom she met—represents the best in Christian witness.

A Collect for Deaconess Alexander
O God, you called Anna Alexander as a deaconess in your Church, and sent her as teacher and evangelist to the people of Georgia: Grant us the humility to go wherever you send, and the wisdom to teach the word of Christ to whoever we meet, that all may come to the enlightenment which you intend for your people; through Jesus Christ, our Teacher and Savior. Amen.


Psalm 78:1-7

Deuteronomy 6:4-9, 20-25
2 Timothy 3:14-4:5
Matthew 11:25-30



In our meetings of August 23rd and September 6th we worked together to prepare for this year’s Christian Education at Saint Athanasius – thank you all who came to the meetings, thank you for your input and your hard work.

This year we have planned for three groups

1.- 1st through 6th grade – Mrs Charlene Parker will be leading that group using the Children’s Curriculum from Virginia Theological Seminary. Our young ones will meet in the Rector’s office while the Sunday-School room is getting ready

2.- 7th through 12th grade – Ms. Caroline Banks will be leading that group using the Episcopal Youth Curriculum from VTS – our youth will meet in the Chapel at the Martin Center

3.- Adult Education – Father Iané will begin leading that group with a theme of Scriptural, Historical, and Cultural Background of our common prayers such as The Lord’s Prayer and The Nicene Creed – adults will meet in the Parish Hall

All groups begin September 13th at 9:45 am –

We have solid programs aiming to strengthen not only our knowledge of the Holy Scriptures, and the liturgy, but also our relationship with God – in Spirit, through Jesus Christ. Join us for this part of our journey.

We are following strict Diocesan guidelines with the qualifications, requirements, and special trainings for our youth ministers and teachers.

If you wish to assist with Sunday-School teaching, please see Father Iané for further information on Diocesan guidelines.

See you Sunday –


UPCOMING YOUTH EVENT: A message from Rebekah Stewart, Communications and Events Planning SpecialistEpiscopal Diocese of Georgia | 611 East Bay Street | Savannah, Georgia 31401


Registration for Fall Gathering: Servant of All, is now open. This year Fall Gathering will be a High School only event. Fear not, we still have 2 events between now and December that are open to middle-schoolers. Please share the following information with your high school youth and have them register AS SOON AS POSSIBLE. If any youth need a scholarship to participate, please have your priest contact me directly with the request. Fall Gathering 2015 registration is now open to all 9th through 12th graders. This event will be held at Honey Creek September 18-20th, 2015.The cost is just $100 to attend, which includes meals, snacks and a t-shirt. Participants will discuss the value of serving each other. Youth and Adult Leaders from around the Diocese will share about ways they serve their communities and how you can get involved too! During Fall Gathering participants can expect to participate in fun team building games, to meet other young youth and adult leaders from across the diocese; to discuss the true meaning of servitude, humility and grace; to share their own servant experience; and to have fun! The weekend schedule will be a mix of structured programming and free time to forge new friendships. Invite someone from home to come with you! To register go to


September 6th – Sunday School Teachers/Facilitators Meeting in the Chapel at 9:45 AM

                                  Meeting with Ushers – Sanctuary – following the service


Thursday, September 10th at 5:30 PM – Choir Rehearsal begins – Sanctuary 


September 13th – Sunday School begins – locations as last year


First Sunday of each month – meeting with group ministries – Sanctuary, immediately following the service

September – Ushers

October – Readers / Lectors

November – Altar Guild

December – LEMs and LEVs 


Second Sunday of each month – Lunch with Friends – Cover-dish lunch (starts in October)


September 17th at 6 PM – Celebration of a New Ministry followed by Reception

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