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Second BCEF Call of 2023: All Saints', Leonia

organ console

The Bishop’s Church Emergency Fund (BCEF) provides financial support for church buildings in the diocese needing repairs and renovation, usually with a special focus on emergency and unforeseen needs. Through the BCEF, you can support the critical needs identified by the Bishop.

The second BCEF call of 2023 is for organ repair at All Saints', Leonia. You can donate online, or mail a check payable to Diocese of Newark with BCEF Call #2 in the memo line to: Diocese of Newark, Attn: BCEF, 31 Mulberry St., Newark, NJ 07102.

All Saints’ Church is strategically located on a lovely residential block between Broad and Grand Avenues, Leonia’s two main thoroughfares. The property consists of the church and parish hall, the lower level of which serves as a child care center. Beautifully simple, the church’s foundation is fieldstone which supports a wood frame structure. Founded in 1893 and now the oldest church in Leonia, All Saints’ has an admirable record of service to the community, both through making its parish hall available for use by other educational and cultural organizations and through its active child care center.

John Sposato has been a member of All Saints’ for close to three decades. He and Annie Byerly currently serve as wardens of the parish. John says, “I love that we’re a very tightly knit congregation and this helped us face the challenges posed by the pandemic. We take care of each other. We’re also very glad to be able to serve the community with our Child Care Center.”

All Saints’ primary ministry to Leonia and the surrounding area is its Child Care Center, which serves 60 children from three months old through pre-K. About half the children are from the town of Leonia, the other half from nearby communities. The program has been in existence since 1956 and is fully licensed by the state. All the teachers are CPR certified and the staff includes teachers trained in Early Childhood Education. Owned and operated by All Saints’ Church, the Center aims to provide working families with a warm, nurturing environment for their children.

Average attendance each Sunday at All Saints’ is about 25. Although the parish does not have a regular Sunday choir, music and congregational singing have an important role in their worship and for this reason the recent repairs made to their historic Austin pipe organ were considered a high priority. The Austin Organ Company of Hartford, Connecticut has built hundreds of instruments for churches throughout the U.S. since its founding in 1898. The company is also credited with many innovative designs in organ building. In the 1970s, All Saints’ purchased their Austin opus 863 from another denomination. The organ is a three manual instrument with 19 stops. Not surprisingly, maintaining an organ that is over a century old can be expensive,

To cover the most recent repairs to the organ, the parish received a loan from the Ward J. Herbert Fund for the work done on the bellows and reed stops, the cost of which exceeded $6,000. In addition to Sunday worship, All Saints’ is a congregation committed to providing a highly needed service to many families in its community. Your generosity in contributing to this our second BCEF call for 2023, will help the people of All Saints’ to repay this loan without impacting other areas of their parish life and ministry.

God's peace,

+Carlye J. Hughes

The Rt. Rev. Carlye J. Hughes
Bishop of Newark