Friends of St. James
St. James is a small parish. We average around two hundred communicants at Sunday morning worship. However, many of those are visitors, or parishioners who are not financially able to support the church. Therefore, we are constantly seeking to find help from outside the parish.
Over thirty-five years ago we created the FRIENDS OF ST. JAMES, people mostly in the United States who had once been parishioners or who had visited St. James or had perhaps been married here, or simply thought the idea of an Episcopal Church in Florence was a good idea. Many of these have been faithful contributors through the years.
Also about thirty-five years ago the St. James Altar Guild became the American International League, a charity organization that used to hold its annual bazaar on 8 December at St. James. However, this popular event outgrew the premises, and we formed the FRIENDS OF THE AMERICAN CHURCH, many of whom were not parishioners, but they felt that the church is an important institution in Florence. The FRIENDS have organized the annual Spring Fairs, the Christmas Gala Dinners, the Artisan Fairs, and many other fund-raising events through the years.
People often fail to consider that churches too have financial obligations and budgets to meet