May 21st: Tom Adamson's Last Official Sunday at St. Agnes'
May 6, 2017: With tears of joy, the congregation at St. Agnes' in Cowan will celebrate the completion of The Rev'd Tom Adamson's three years of field ministry in Cowan during his program of study at The University of the South.
On Sunday, May 21st, the Adamson's will join us for their last official Sunday. Tom will lead our 11:00 a.m. service alongside Bishop Paul Lambert. Afterward will gather everyone together in the parish hall for a farewell luncheon.
Tom and his family - Elizabeth, Abby, Sam, Zeke, and Joanna - will relocate a few days later to Angola, Indiana where Tom will begin a full-time cure at Church of the Holy Family.
We are grateful for Tom's three years of dynamic work at St. Agnes' first as a Resident Seminarian and more recently as our Resident Deacon. We have grown in grace by his contributions of music, teaching, outreach, home visits, hospital visits, work projects, and program development, to name a few.
Tom also made enormous contributions to the town of Cowan with the Kids' Zone at the Fall Heritage Festival, the H.O.P.E. Project at Cowan School, and the It's Still Christmas Party.
We invite everyone in the extended church family and in the town at large to join us on Sunday, May 21st.
May God ever watch over the Adamson's in their new home and in the continuing work of the gospel!
Here is the announcement for the ordination of The Rev'd Tom Adamson to the Sacred Order of Priests on June 24, 2017:
St. Agnes' Welcomes Bishop Lambert
November 27, 2016: The congregation of St. Agnes' Church in Cowan, with the consent of the Bishop of Tennessee, welcomes The Right Reverend Paul Lambert as Pastor and Celebrant under a supply arrangement.
Lambert served in the Diocese of Dallas (Texas) for 30 years before retiring in early 2016. At this retirement, he and his wife Sally relocated to Monteagle, Tennessee in order to live in the greater Sewanee area and be closer to their children and grandchildren in the Atlanta area.
Bishop Lambert's new ministry at St. Agnes' is a great fit and a great opportunity. We look forward to ways we can grow and serve together for the work of the gospel!
November 20th: Fr. Wise's Last Official Sunday at St. Agnes'
November 18, 2016: Six years ago we welcomed The Rev'd Gene Wise and Janelee to our church family.
Fr. Wise had retired from St. Paul's Murfreesboro in 2007. Although he was not planning to supply a small congregation in retirement, everything changed when he got the call from St. Agnes' in October 2010!
Sunday, November 20th, was Fr. Wise's last "official" Sunday with us; however, it won't be his last Sunday ever.
Fr. Wise will still be on call to lead us on occasion. In the meantime, he and Janelee are starting an outreach ministry for senior citizens in the Murfreesboro area through St. Paul's Church.
We bless and appreciate the leadership and fellowship that the Wise's have shared with us and pray for their continuing ministry in Murfreesboro!
Electrical Improvements Under Way
October 16, 2016: The campus master plan at St. Agnes' calls for a list of electrical improvements in key areas of the church property. We are pleased to report that in the Year 2016 we have completed a number of small projects that move us closer to our goal:
In 2017 we plan to add outdoor lighting on the east side of the property to improve the safety of the parking lot and also make electrical improvements inside the parish hall.
The historic facility at St. Agnes' is in good repair and 100% debt free. Every improvement we make sustains our ministry and presence in the community.
St. Agnes' Procures a New HVAC System for the Nave
July 25, 2015: The St. Agnes' Mission Council proudly reports that the congregation procured a new and up-to-date heating and air conditioning system for the Nave. The new system effectively replaces a 28-year old air conditioner and a 35-year old furnace with a higher level of safety, accuracy, and energy efficiency. We are very pleased to mention that the entire cost of the project was covered by funds readily available in the operating account. In other words, we did not take a single penny from our savings account, we did not apply for a grant, we did not borrow from the Diocese, and we did not hold a capital drive or special fundraiser to cover our costs. The Lord blesses us with what we need for a healthy and sustainable church budget.
Bishop of Tennessee Signs Communion Partners' Statement on Christian Marriage
July 3, 2015: Bishop Bauerschmidt signed a statement issued by the Communion Partners in support of the definition of marriage as one man and one woman that is defined by Holy Scripture and properly summarized in the Book of Common Prayer.
St. Agnes' Church in Cowan, Tennessee adds our support to this statement. Please click here to read the full statement with a list of supporting bishops. Click here to see a list of priests, deacons, and laity who added their names to the statement, one of which is the Senior Warden at St. Agnes', Cowan.
Annual Easter Dinner Outgrows the Parish Hall!
April 6, 2015: We are glad to report that the Third Annual Easter Sunday Dinner at St. Agnes' grew too big for the church parish hall! With over 50 people in attendance and a bounty of delightful dishes, the 2015 Easter dinner relocated to the Cumberland Ballroom at the Franklin-Pearson House. The meal and the fellowship have become an extension of our ministry at St. Agnes' and provides a meaningful extension of our celebration of the Resurrection of Our Lord.
Father Werlein Memorial Christmas Reception
Dec. 26, 2014: St. Agnes' Church in Cowan honors the memory of a legendary priest in a special way. For three years now St. Agnes' has hosted the Fr. Werlein Memorial Christmas Reception following the Christmas Eve service.
The Rev'd Philip Prentiss Werlein was a retired priest from the Diocese of Louisiana who moved to Sewanee to retire after many years of serving various churches in his home diocese. Prior to entering the priesthood, he was a Second Lieutenant in the US Army during World War I and was also a Rhodes Scholar at Oxford University in England. Through the better part of his retirement years, from 1966 until 1978, Fr. Werlein served as the priest-in-charge at St. Agnes' and was dearly loved by the people of Cowan.
Fr. Werlein went out of his way year after year to share Christmas cheer with people in the community. He would put together a Christmas party in the church parish hall with cookies and wassail and provide a wrapped gift for each of the children. For some of the children, the party and the gift were the only celebration of Christmas they were able to have.
To remember his wonderful legacy, St. Agnes' offers the Fr. Werlein Memorial Christmas reception with cider and refreshments. In addition, the church puts together an old-fashioned Christmas gift bag for each child who attends the Christmas Eve service. It's a most enjoyable time for our extended church family and a great way to continue our celebration of the holy birth of our savior, Jesus Christ.
St. Agnes' welcomes Fr. Bob Dedmon for an extended visit:
November 28, 2014: On Sunday, December 14th, and on Christmas Eve, St. Agnes' will welcome The Very Rev'd Robert Dedmon as a visiting priest while Fr. Wise is recovering from surgery.
Fr. Dedmon recently retired as Dean of St. Paul's Cathedral in Peoria, Illinois. Prior to that he was Canon to the Ordinary in the Diocese of Tennessee under Bishop Herlong. He is a native Tennessean and attended The University of the South. After being ordained into the priesthood in 1983, he served at St. Paul's Chattanooga, St. Matthew's Antioch, and St. Bede's Manchester.
He and his wife Judy, also a native Tennessean, recently moved to Manchester. We look forward to Fr. Dedmon's visit and appreciate his assistance while Fr. Wise recuperates.
May 25, 2014: Today our church family held a special recognition for Richard Paton who recently graduated from Franklin County High School.
Richard first came to St. Agnes' with his younger brother Jason over a year ago and quickly became part of our extended church family. It was a pleasure to share in this joyous occasion with Richard and we want to hold him in prayer as he makes plans for his future.
Read About Our Front Door
February 28, 2014: We didn't realize that the front door at St. Agnes' is an amazing and inspiring story. Mr. Seawell Brandau, a member of St. George's Episcopal Church in Nashville, encouraged us to put in writing how our church managed to procure a replacement front door to make our church a more welcoming place.
We did, and Seawell sent the story to the Diocese of Tennessee and got published in the Connections newsletter. Karen McCallie, our resident photographer, took the photo at dusk showing how the cross above the altar is visible through the door at night.
Here is the link to the article: http://edtn.org/PDF/Connections_2014_3/HTML/#/10/
Church Organ to be Upgraded in February 2014
February 6, 2014: St. Agnes' owns a rare, unique and valuable 1952 model Hammond C-2 Series organ that was a gift to the church in the late 1960's. One of our goals for the Year 2014 will be met this month when this faithful old instrument receives a long overdue sound upgrade.
Over the last few years we have noticed the sound deteriorate, and then in recent weeks we started hearing the "hornets nest" sound indicating that the original sound tubes are just about gone. The upgrade will involve replacing the original tube-type sound emitters with solid state sound pre-amplifiers. Mr. Albert Holt, a Chattanooga-based organ technician, says that the new pre-amplifiers will restore and enhance the original sound quality expected from a Hammond.
Hammond organs of this vintage use an electro-mechanical tonewheel to produce a warm, harmonic sound. Compared to other popular organ designs, the Hammond organ closely resembles the sound of a human voice, which works very well in church settings.
We look forward to the upgrade, and hope everybody will sing out loud when it's done!
Chris Capaldo Ordained Into the Diaconate
December 9, 2013: Chris Capaldo, our seminarian, was ordained a Transitional Deacon in the Diocese of Florida on Sunday, December 8th, at St. John's Cathedral in Jacksonville, FL.
Fr. Wise participated in the service alongside The Rt. Rev'd Samuel J Howard, Bishop of Florida.
Chris will complete his Field Education Program at St. Agnes' at the end of December, 2013, and then complete his program of study at Sewanee School of Theology at the end of April, 2014.
We have truly enjoyed Chris' time with us and are truly blessed by his ministry. Chris has been an enthusiastic supporter of our Sunday school program and has helped build a stronger relationship between St. Agnes' and the seminary as well as the Society for Promoting Christian Knowledge (SPCK).
We will see him from time to time in the Easter Semester 2014 before he moves back to Florida to work toward his calling in the priesthood.
Bishop Bauerschmidt's Visitation
October 28, 2013: The church family at St. Agnes' welcomed The Rt. Rev'd John Bauerschmidt, Bishop of Tennessee, for a pastoral visitation on Sunday, October 27th.
The Bishop celebrated the Rite of Confirmation with 57 people in attendance, making this one of the largest Sunday crowds at St. Agnes' so far this year. Sheila Robertson Leitzel, baptized into the Christian faith in 1974, received Confirmation. The Bishop also welcomed four parishioners who were registered by Letter of Transfer, and welcomed Patti Posan, director of the Society for Promoting Christian Knowledge (SPCK) who was in attendance as well.
The Bishop also blessed and dedicated the new front door in loving memory of Mrs. Mamie Garner and Mr. Roosevelt Garner, and then dedicated the new front transom window in loving memory of Travis Cantrell.
Following the service, the entire congregation gathered for a luncheon in the parish hall and a time of fellowship.