The Cathedral of St. Philip - Atlanta, GA

The Dean's Christmas Letter

Dear Friend of the Light!

I write this Christmas letter of appeal to you on December 13, the feast of Saint Lucy.

Some of you may know the story of Saint Lucy. Tradition has it that she was blinded and martyred, and has now become the symbol of light. Indeed, the name “Lucy” comes from the Latin, “lux” which means “light.” In some Scandanavian countries, Saint Lucy’s Day is observed by having a young girl process through the house in a white dress with a crown of lighted candles on her head! Be careful! 

Before the 1582 reform of the Western Calendar, December 13 was the date of the winter solstice, the shortest day of the year – the day of the least amount of light. Thus, Saint Lucy, on December 13, was said to be the one bringing more and more light into the world!

I am asking you, today, to also bring light into the world. The true light of the world, of course, is Jesus Christ, whose birth and incarnation we will celebrate with great festivity at Christmas. Thank you for joining us then! But we need your personal light, too.

Yes, every year, besides inviting your participation in Christmas, I also make a special appeal for your financial help. We need it. It is your special gift that helps us start a new year of growing light. That gift can be either the fulfillment of a previous pledge, or—very often—a gift over and beyond what you have pledged! Thank you!

I love those special gifts of light! Every check, every dollar, every transaction, is a ray of light that helps the Cathedral of St. Philip be an illuminating beacon of great light in the world.

David Rocchio, our Director of Stewardship, will note below how much money we need to end the 2022 year with balanced finances. It’s always a lot, always over one million dollars. That seems like a lot, but each year you respond – with gifts of every shape and size.

Thank you! Thank you, on Saint Lucy’s Day, as you do your part to light a candle and bring the Light of Christ into the world.

May God bless you and your family and your community in this holy season!

In the Light of Christ,

The Very Reverend Samuel G. Candler
Dean of the Cathedral of St. Philip


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PS. The treasurer has just informed me of the amount of money the Cathedral needs to balance our end-of-year finances. That figure is $1,400,000. It’s a lot of money, but we can get there with your contribution. Your gift, small or large, is critical for us! Please join in our efforts to bring the Light of Christ into the world! Thank you!