This Sunday, Aug. 11, marks the 83rd annual memorial service for the Garden Club of Shelter Island, a tradition begun in 1936.
Father Charles McCarron of St. Mary’s Episcopal Church will preach. His topic is “The Divine Gardener.”
Barbara Hayes will chair the service, which honors the work of the Garden Club and remembers members who passed away during the previous year. Garden Club officers, family and friends of the deceased will present a rose and remembrances for Glorian Dorsey, Martha Williams and Judith Winship. Garden Club co-president Suzanne Louer will read the Scripture lessons. The altar flowers will be arranged by Carolyn Stromberg, and co-president Joan Buonocore will design the reception table flowers.
Father McCarron was born and raised as a Roman Catholic in the Fordham section of the Bronx, the only child of Scottish parents. After a stint as a New York City corrections officer, he was ordained as a Capuchin Franciscan Friar in 1986. His degrees include a bachelor of arts degree from Fordham University, a master’s of divinity from Maryknoll School of Theology, and a master’s from the Franciscan Institute at St. Bonaventure. He graduated from the CUNY School of Law, holds several certificates, including one in transitional and interim ministry and is currently participating in The Living School of the Center for Action and Contemplation in Albuquerque, N.M.
After working to help people with AIDS on Long Island and chairing a national AIDS conference, Father McCarron became parish outreach developer for HIV and AIDS at Catholic Charities Health Services. He has created parish-based immigration services and is involved with local migrant ministry.
He was received into the Episcopal Church as a priest in 2002 after receiving a master’s in sacred theology from the General Seminary of the Episcopal Church and has been a diocesan Canon, serving as executive director of Episcopal Community Services Long Island for the past 10 years. During that time he also served as vicar of the churches of St. Lawrence of Canterbury in Dix Hills and Resurrection in Richmond Hill. After writing the proposal for its creation, he was appointed a diocesan missioner for the Great Neck Episcopal Ministries, uniting three congregations, two English-speaking and one Korean.
As a member of the Third Order of the Society of St. Francis, he taught the friars at Little Portion Friary and conducted retreats in Franciscan Spirituality, methods of prayer and vestry retreats.
Father McCarron loves walking, bike riding, visiting museums, and spending time with friends and his two Yorkies, Bogart and Kate, as well as practicing his newly acquired skill of icon writing. He has hosted foreign exchange students, Shelter Island Bucks and hopes to become a foster parent.
Music will be performed by chapel organist Linda Betjeman and alto soloist Christina Herman. Ms. Herman lives in Washington, D.C. and has summered on Shelter Island since meeting her husband, Christopher Herman, in the early 1990s. She sings with the Chancel Choir of St. Mark’s Episcopal Church on Capitol Hill and is a member of the St. Mark’s Chamber Ensemble, and studies voice with Diane Atherton, a graduate of the Guildhall School. She currently coordinates the Climate Change Program of ICCR (Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility), a coalition of over 300 faith- and values-based global institutional investors that engage corporations on a broad range of sustainability and human rights concerns.
A reception in the Grove will follow the service.