of St. Aidan's
In 1993 at St Davidís in Roswell, the Rt.
Rev. Frank Allan announced that the diocese would open a mission church in
the Alpharetta area, and in early 1994 St. Aidanís was started with on
Easter Sunday, April 3, 1994, at sunrise in Windward Park. About 75
people gathered as the priest in charge, the Rev. Noel Burtenshaw, led the
Before a year passed, St. Aidanís moved from
being an aided parish to being recognized as a full parish at Diocesan
Council in November 2004. The name St. Aidanís was chosen because St.
Aidan of Ferns (not Lindesfarne) was a missionary monk sent to preach the
gospel by St. David in 7th Century Ireland, and the
relationship between St. Davidís and St. Aidanís has remained strong
through the years.
Father Noel led the parish for 10 years and
became the inspiration and driving force for our new church. Father Noel
worked many long hours and nurtured the community spirit for the new
church, which adopted as its mission statement: ďTo Know Jesus Christ and
Make Him Known.Ē
The new St. Aidanís congregation met for
regular worship first on June 26, 1994 in a leased space of the AT&T
building in Alpharetta, and during the first year everyone pitched in
because of the limited space for worship and mid-week storage. Prayer
books, vestments, the altar items and a large, standing cross had to be
brought in every Sunday, and many of the childrenís Sunday school classes
were held in corners of the hallway.
The next temporary space of meeting was the
Alpharetta Senior Center, which was large enough to accommodate the
growing membership of St. Aidanís, but soon the congregation purchased the
present 19 acre site at 13560 Cogburn Road, built a church to seat 400,
and held its first Holy Eucharist on Palm Sunday 1997.
Some of the ministries at St. Aidanís
include: volunteering at the Foster Care Support Foundation; yearly
Habitat for Humanity builds; cooking and serving dinner to the clients of
HomeStretch as they seek to come back from homelessness; regular support
and involvement with North Fulton Community Charities; mission trips both
domestic and international; a wonderful prayer chain; exuberant and active
Christian Education; and a large and active Daughters of the King chapter.
Father Noel retired in June 2003, but that
didnít keep parishioners from beginning the next phase of growthóa Parish
Hall for education and fellowship, which was completed in September 2004.
The Rev. Robert Wood was called as St. Aidanís next rector the very next
month, so one of the first events in the new Parish Hall was a grand
reception following his institution by the Rt. Rev. Neil Alexander on
January 19, 2005.
In their first year in the new building, the
people of St. Aidanís have also welcomed over 120 each Sunday for a full
breakfast cooked by the men of the parish, doubled the size and scope of
Vacation Bible School, and hosted other parish-wide fellowship events,
including a gala reception on the Feast of Pentecost 2005 to honor Father
Noel by naming the parish hall as Burtenshaw Hall.