All Saints Sunday/El Día de los Muertos

The names of the St. Paul’s Family members who have died since All Saints Sunday 2013 will be read during each of the morning worship services on November 2. 

Also on November 2, members of St. Paul’s Fe y Esperanza congregation will erect El Día de los Muertos ofrendas (altars) on the Plaza for all to remember our deceased loved ones and to pray for them. The congregation will hold a Spanish-language All Saints service at 1 p.m. in the chapel.

To conclude the All Saints observance, the St. Paul’s Choir will sing an Evensong service at 4 p.m. in the Sanctuary.

More about these observances

All Saints Day goes back to the early history of the Church, and today Protestants use it to remember all Christians both past and present. 

In the United Methodist Church, it is celebrated not only to remember Saints, but also to remember all those that have died that were members of the local church congregation, particularly those deceased since the previous All Saints Sunday.

When the Spanish conquistadores landed in the Western Hemisphere, the indigenous people in what is now Mexico and South America were practicing a ritual that was at least 3,000 years old. Although it was in honor of the dead, the Spanish thought it mocked the dead and tried to eradicate it.

Eventually, the Spanish moved the Day of the Dead observance to the day of the Christian observance of All Saints, incorporating this indigenous tradition into the Christian liturgical calendar, although the day also is celebrated as an indigenous cultural tradition.

This Day at St. Paul’s

The altars, or ofrendas, designed by the Fe y Espearanza community, are a reminder that death is not the end, it is the beginning of new life. Stop by and light a candle to celebrate the memory of your loved ones.

To learn more about the celebration, visit with Fe y Esperanza members at the altars or watch the video on the Jones Building monitor, Día de los Muertos: A Brief Overview by the National Hispanic Cultural Center in Albuquerque, NM. 

The community also will be serving  sweet tamales, cheese jalapeño tamales, pan del muerto, and Mexican hot chocolate.

A Spanish-language All Saints/El Día de los Muertos worship service will be in the Sanctuary/Chapel at 1 p.m. Everyone also is invited to attend, whether or not you can speak or understand Spanish.  All are welcome! ¡Son bienvenidos!


All Saints Choral Evensong

St. Paul’s Choral Scholars will join St. Paul’s Choir to offer Choral Evensong for All Saints’ Day at 4 p.m. November 2.

The repertoire is drawn from the rich body of work inspired by this principal feast of the church year that celebrates all Christians and the spiritual bond between those in heaven (the “church triumphant”) and the living. 

The Choral Scholars will sing Alice Parker’s thrilling arrangement of Hark, I hear the harps eternal, and St. Paul’s Choir will offer music of Herbert Sumsion and Richard Shephard. 
The choirs will combine to sing a resplendent polychoral work, Alleluia, in resurrectione tua Christe by Jacobus Gallus (1551-1591), also known as Jacob Handl.

The service of Choral Evensong has its origins in the ancient custom of marking the hours of the day and night in prayer, all in an effort to fulfill the Lord’s precept to “pray without ceasing.”

The basic form of the liturgy as currently practiced was devised in the 16th century to provide a form of daily evening prayer common to clergy and laity alike. The service features singing of the Psalms, Canticles, Hymns, Scripture readings, and prayers for the Church, the world and those in need.

Developing Healthy Relationships with Your Teens

Youth Parents P.R.A.Y. Together presents Audrey Omenson, M.A., LPC, a clinician with Nick Finnegan Counselling Center, who will talk about communications skills between parents and teens, including boundaries and how to  navigate highly emotional/difficult situations.

Omenson believes in equipping clients with skills they can use outside the therapy session and in giving them ownership for their personal growth. She strategically uses art, movement, meditation, and play in her counseling while recognizing the importance of parent-child relationships, which forms the foundation of her therapeutic work. She also understands the unique dynamics of mother-daughter relationships, especially as what young girls need from their mothers changes as they and the relationship matures.

The group meets in the Fellers Room (S-312) after an optional supper with the Youth in the Youth Center at 5. All are welcome. One does not have to be affiliated with St. Paul's to attend.

Poetic Faith

On Sunday, November 2 at 5:15 p.m. in the Chapel, Rev. Eleanor Colvin, St. Paul’s Associate Pastor of Community and Global Ministries, will share “Poetic Faith,” readings of her creative works inspired by scripture and faith. 

This is the second in a series of events giving parishioners the opportunity to engage new staff and clergy and learn more about them. The hour with Eleanor will include a time for Q&A.

Willing Friends Annual Luncheon

St. Paul's United Methodist Church (map)

The annual Willing Friends luncheon honors individuals who have included St. Paul’s Foundation or St. Paul’s United Methodist Church in their estate plans. 

This year’s luncheon in Fondren Hall at noon on Monday, November 3, will feature a special treat by St. Paul’s Director of Music Dr. Paolo Bordignon. He will share his experience traveling to Leipzig and Berlin where, as part of his doctoral studies he examined Johann Sebastian Bach’s 1724 autograph and original performance materials of Cantata, Halt im Gedächtnis Jesum Christ, BWV 67.    

sCurrent Willing Friends and those interested in learning more about the Willing Friends Society are invited to attend this special event.   Please RSVP to Kat Denton at or 713-528-0527.

Prior to coming to St. Paul’s in the spring of 2014, Dr. Bordignon was Associate Director of Music at St. Bartholomew’s Church in New York City, where he helped oversee one of the nation’s pre-eminent church music programs.

In performance through three continents, Dr. Bordignon has received critical acclaim ranging from “outstanding... lively and distinctive” for his interpretations of early music to “compelling” for performances of avant-garde repertoire. His engagements have included organ recitals at The Metropolitan Museum of Art (New York) and St. Eustache (Paris), and conducting appearances on NBC’s Today.

Dr. Bordignon earned Master’s and Doctor of Musical Arts degrees from the Juilliard School, studying organ and harpsichord, and he was the first person to graduate Philadelphia’s Curtis Institute of Music with a degree in harpsichord (a double major with organ).


Being One: A Marriage Seminar

St. Paul's United Methodsit Church (map)

A marriage seminar, “Being One,” for engaged and newly married couples, will be conducted at St. Paul’s on Saturday, November 8 , from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. 

Seminar leaders are Dr. Sherry Beeman and Dr. Bill Kerley. Married to each other, each also is a former president of the Houston Association of Marriage and Family Therapists.

This seminar fulfills the “Twogether in Texas” marriage education requirements. It is free of charge for couples who have been or who are scheduled to be married at St. Paul’s. For others, the fee is $60.  Lunch included.

For more information or to register, contact Kat Denton via 713-528-0527 or 

Brochure with more information.


Choral Scholars Concert Benefiting the EAC

The Choral Scholars will present a benefit concert Sunday, November 9, on behalf of the Emergency Aid Coalition (EAC).

In the Sanctuary at 4 p.m., the concert will feature soloists singing works ranging from Schumann to Sondheim. A dessert reception will follow.

Admission is free of charge with donations accepted for the EAC.

“Choral Scholars would like to give back to the St. Paul’s community,” said their director Eddie Quaid. 

“This wonderful idea of presenting a recital to benefit the EAC has come from three-year Choral Scholar Emily Wolfe, who is organizing it. Her goal is to present an entertaining program that will help in this worthwhile venture.”

The Choral Scholars are choir of select high school vocalists who lead the 9:45 worship service during the school year.

Get to Know Bill G.

The minister for Congregational Care and Senior Adults — Rev. Dr. Bill Gandin — will present the November 13 Salt & Light program. But the program will be as much about those attending as it will be about him.

“This will be a time for sharing ideas,” he said, “to explore together the possibilities of what we can do together with each other and for each other as well as the community.”

The meeting will be in Fondren Hall, gathering at 10:30 followed by the 11 a.m. program and an $8 lunch for those who RSVP to 713-528-0527 or by Tuesday, November 11.

Save the date for the December 11 meeting when a singer and pianist from Houston Grand Opera who will present a 45-minute performance of opera excerpts and some conversation/Q & A about opera. 

Organ Recital

St. Paul's United Methodist Church (map)

Dr. Paolo Bordignon, St. Paul’s Director of Music and Organist, will present an organ recital on Tuesday, November 18, at 7 p.m.

Selections for the first half of the program will be

  • Prelude and Fugue in B Minor (BWV 544) by Johann Sebastian Bach
  • A Fancie (in C) by William Byrd
  • Second movement from Méditations sur Le Mystère de La Sainte Trinité by Olivier Messiaen
  • Scherzo in G Minor (Op. 49, No. 2) by Marco Enrico Bossi

Following an intermission, the evening will conclude with the six-movement Première Symphonie (Op. 14) by Louis Vierne.

Chapter One Book Group

St. Paul's United Methodist Church (map)

Tonight's book for discussion will be The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion.

Chapter One Book Group is open to anyone who enjoys reading and discussing a wide variety of books. The group meets at 7 p.m. the third Tuesday of the month in J-202. To be added to the email list, please contact Linda Harmes at

The group's reading schedule through October 2015:

  • November 18, 2014. The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion
  • December 16, 2014. The Invention of Wings by Sue Monk Kidd
  • January 20, 2015. Song Yet Sung by James McBride
  • February 17, 2015. Among Schoolchildren by Tracy Kidder
  • March 17, 2015. Someone by Alice McDermott 
  • April 21, 2015. The Hungry Tide  by Amitav Ghosh
  • May 19, 2015. A Tale for the Time Being by Ruth Ozeki   
  • June 16. 2015. All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doer      
  • July 21, 2015. The Tiger’s Wife by Tea Obreht     
  • August 18, 2915. Cloud Atlas by David Mitchell
  • September 15, 2015. Me Before You by Jojo Mayes        
  • October 20, 2015. The Night Guest by Fiona McFarlane