Holy Family Closing Celebration

Holy Family Closing Celebration

by the Rev. Dr. Gail Cafferata, Priest-in-Charge, Holy Family Rohnert Park

Holy Family Episcopal Church will hold its last public service Sunday, May 20th at 4:30 p.m. The community is invited to attend this service of thanksgiving and praise for over 30 years of ministry in Rohnert Park, Cotati and Penngrove. Members of the congregation will be dispersing. The Episcopal Diocese of Northern California, hopes that the property will purchased by another church.

The congregation would like to take this occasion to express their deep gratitude to the communities of Rohnert Park, Penngrove and Cotati for their ongoing support. In 2008, Rebuilding Together refreshed the church by painting its windows and trim. In 2009, Sonoma State University’s (SSU) Sustainable Landscape program designed and installed the church corner garden. In 2010 and 2011, SSU’s graduate students from the Department of Psychology and the Executive MBA Program provided invaluable consultation to the NOAH Board of Directors.

For the past two years, the Church became the home of The Neighborhood Farm, a community garden nurturing the life of our wider community. The garden’s many beds filled and flourished with help from iGrow Sonoma, local farmers, dedicated volunteers from SSU’s JUMP community service club, SSU’s Sustainable Landscape Program, Sonoma Compost Company, Canyon Quality Tree Service, neighboring police and firemen, Episcopal Community Services and over twenty-five generous gardeners.

The community has offered the congregation many opportunities to share their gifts with others. In the 1990’s the church provided temporary winter housing for families referred by COTS (The Community on the Shelterless). Since its construction, the church has hosted diverse choral performances and workshops for Sonoma State University, the Sonoma Bach Society and the Santa Rosa Junior College. In early 2011, the church began the Holistic Arts and Learning Organization (HALO), sponsoring, designing, and presenting quality education and arts programs and concerts such as the ecumenical La Primavera Benefit Concert, the Northwest Boychoir, a children’s choir program using the Voice for Life curriculum of the Royal School of Church Music, and a 2011 community-wide summer music camp.

In 2005 the church joined with Cross and Crown Lutheran Church, St. John’s Methodist Church, Rohnert Park Assembly of God and Rohnert Park Bible Church to found the non-profit NOAH (Neighbor Organized Against Hunger). NOAH provides supplemental food for families from the Rohnert Park, Cotati, and Penngrove area, providing over 20 pounds of food to 200 to 300 households each week. The Neighborhood Farm’s abundance of produce has been regularly shared with the Redwood Gospel Mission’s soup kitchen and other community feeding programs. NOAH has been funded by Episcopal Community Services and is a designated Jubilee Ministry Center of the Episcopal Church of the United States of America.

The congregation wishes to express its deep appreciation to all in our community and the diocese who gave generously to assist the congregation with its ministries of feeding the hungry, serving children and their families, and nurturing our wider community through the arts.

Those seeking further information about the ministries of the church should call 707.795.7500 or email holyfamilymission@sbcglobal.net.

When: Sunday, May 20th at 4:30 p.m.
Where: Holy Family Episcopal Church, 1500 East Cotati Avenue (map)

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