GloucesterTimes.com, Gloucester, MA

May 18, 2013

Talk of the Times: St. John's Church celebrates 150th anniversary

By All Hands
Gloucester Daily Times

---- — St. John’s Episcopal Church, located at 48 Middle St., will kick off its 150th anniversary celebration with a choral and organ concert coordinated by music director Mark Nelson Sunday beginning at 4 p.m.

The concert, which is open to the public, features the church’s festival choir of 18 singers from the area and the church’s organ, an Opus 97 — the last pipe organ designed by Charles Fisk — along with other wind and percussion instruments.

Founded in 1867 by fishing families from Nova Scotia and Newfoundland, St. John’s will celebrate its Gloucester roots with a program that includes several anthems dealing with the sea, including Sumsion’s “They That Go Down To the Sea in Ships,” based on Psalm 107, as well as Britten’s “Festival Te Deum.”

A reception will follow in the parish hall.

Human chain at Good Harbor

A group called Hands Across the Sand will once again be looking to form a human chain along Good Harbor Beach today in a demonstration aimed at saying “no” to any offshore oil drilling and “yes” to clean energy.

The planned chain at Good Harbor, set for noon today, marks the third year for the event which was held here for the first time during St. Peter’s Fiesta in 2010. It will be one of more than 100 such presentations planned for across New England and along coastlines around the country.

Hands Across the Sand organizers, whose project is endorsed by environmental groups Oceana, the Sierra Club and others, say the chains are significant this year because the federal government is targeting permits to carry out seismic testing in an effort to locate oil and natural gas deposits offshore.

A special GHS reunion

When Gloucester High School graduates its Class of 2013 on Sunday, June 9, some very special GHS graduates are expected to join in the ceremony.

GHS teacher Donna Tarr and others are coordinating an effort to include in the ceremony members of the Class of 1938, who will be marking their 75th reunion.

“These graduates are in their 90s,” said Tarr. “I know the president of the class is coming from California, and my own mother-in-law is a proud member of the class as well.”

To that end, Tarr is asking for information regarding a number of graduates to invite for the event. They include:

Katherine Arges, Phyllis Arnold, Pauline E. Brown, Francis Bruni, Hester Budrow, Gardner Cahoon, Lorraine F. Cooley, Marion H. Day, Mary Florence DuLong, Irene Early, Elizabeth M. Fattie, Bertha D. Fleming, Norman T. Hatch, Mary P. Hill, Marjorie A Hudder, James C. Jeffery, George Mallio and Irene M. Laine.

Also, Davis E. Lawson, Barbara MacDonald, J. Russell McDonald, Dorothy E. Maskell, Frank C. Morrissey, Elizabeth F. Nickerson Tarr, Madeline E. Nugent, Clifton Parady, Carmen C. Paynotta, Elizabeth E. Porper, Patrick Reardon, F. Chester Roberts, Phyllis M. Rook, Maude E. Sargent, Ruth Shoares, Lawrence K. Silva, Beatrice M. Souza, Analia M. Thome Vadala, Gibert Travers, Everett Tyne, Cecilia T. Warner, Harold Wolozin, Elizabeth A. Wonson and Marcia M. McCarthy.

Any graduates, family members or friends are asked to contact Joan at GHS at 978-281-9870, extension 14002.

GHS students earn Forum honors

Cape Ann Forum president Dan Connell recently presented the organization’s 2013 “international awareness” award to two Gloucester High School seniors at the group’s final forum of the 2012-13 season, held at the Unitarian Universalist Church on Middle Street.

Elizabeth Stephens and Madeleine McDougal each received a $300 scholarship with a certificate recognizing their “pursuit of academic, international and cultural enrichment within and beyond the traditional classroom and a demonstration of exceptional creativity and commitment in educating other students and the wider community.”

The candidates were nominated by their teachers at GHS.

The forum featured veteran diplomat Mark Bellamy discussing the growing U.S.-China competition for economic and political influence in Africa.

Both Connell and Bellamy teach international relations at Simmons College in Boston.

Stephens and McDougal are the co-presidents of the GHS environmental club, which is known as the Student Environmental Action League, and co-editors of the school literary magazine, “The Elicitor.” Among their many other accomplishments, this year they organized raised gardens at the high school to produce food for local charities, according to their teachers.

Stephens is a top student and played Thump in David Campton’s “The Cagebirds” at this year’s regional drama competition involving 100 high schools. Her teachers also called her a “remarkable photographer,” working both digitally and with film.

McDougal is also the treasurer of the GHS Human Rights Initiative and has worked with the Youth Food Project. She’s an honor student and a former winner of the Sawyer Medal for outstanding academic achievement. She has also been a star performer on the GHS track team, running the low hurdles.

Stephens plans to attend UMass Amherst next fall to study sustainable agriculture; and McDougal plans to attend Bennington College in Vermont to pursue her ecological interests. Both students are accomplished poets who have read their work at the Gloucester Writers Center.

Paul George reception

BankGloucester will host a public reception for local painter Paul George today from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., in the bank’s lobby, 160 Main St.

A collection of his work is currently on display at the bank. The free public reception is an opportunity to meet the artist. Light refreshments will be served.

George studied at the Museum of Fine Arts School in Boston and is a signature member of the National Watercolor Society. He is an active member of the New England Watercolor Society, Cape Cod Art Association, North Shore Art Association and former vice president of the Rockport Art Association.

He has won more than 50 awards for his work.

Honored veteran

The flag at the Veterans’ Center will fly this week in honor of World War II veteran Gerald Peter Pothier. Born Dec. 20, 1911, he entered the U.S. Marine Corps on March 9, 1943.

Sgt. Pothier served with Marine Aircraft Group 32, Marine Wing Service Squadron Nine, 9th Marine Aircraft Wing, and Fleet Marine Force. He served in the Southwest Pacific during the Philippine Campaign and the Bismarck Archipelago Campaign.

Pothier was awarded the Asiatic Pacific Campaign Medal, and the World War II Victory Medal.

He was discharged Sept. 18, 1945, and died May 9, 1969.

The flag was requested to fly in his honor by his son, Alan Pothier, of Gloucester.

Anyone wishing to fly a flag in honor of a deceased veteran can call the Office of Veterans’ Services at 978-281-9740.