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St. George's Celebrates the Rev. Bernie Poppe's 10th Anniversary as Rector
September 30, 2012
Ten years ago this week, the Rev. Bernard W. Poppe stepped into the pulpit for the first time as the seventh Rector of St. George's.
Through the use of a special email list that includes everyone in the parish except Bernie, members of his flock hatched a plan to celebrate at a special coffee hour after services today. There were deviled eggs and carrot cake, two of his favorite treats, and Warden Cheryl Notari held back some of the deviled eggs to make sure they would still be available when Bernie arrived after greeting people at the main door of the church.
Early in the planning stages, the decision was made to let Bernie know that an observance was planned -- otherwise he might have been worried when the Rev. Canon Gregory A. Jacobs materialized in the pew. Greg is Canon to the Ordinary, the number two official of the Diocese of Newark, and he read a letter of congratulations from Bishop Mark Beckwith, who was at a long-planned visit to another parish.
There was one surprise visitor -- the Hon. Victor DeLuca, Mayor of Maplewood, arrived at coffee hour to read a proclamation on behalf of the Township Committee. The proclamation traced the history of Bernie's life and ministry, and noted his civic involvement as a long-time member of the board of Turning Point Community Services, which provides housing for victims of domestic violance. The proclamation noted that Bernie also has worked with Deputy Mayor Kathleen Leventhal in planning "Maplewood Loves Wellness," an upcoming celebration planned for the week of October 8.
After the Mayor's proclamation it was on to other things -- there was an organizational meeting upstairs for the Broadway musical planned for next year, and then Bernie and Youth Minister Olivia Pope left with the middle school youth on a trip to the Cathedral of St. John the Divine in Manhattan.
St. George's is a busy place. Congratulations, Bernie, and thank you for your ministry and service.