Parish News

Welcome & Worship Information


Holy Cross is an Episcopal Church and Member of the Diocese of
Western North Carolina
(828) 963-4609


COVID-19 Precautions Update
While not required at services or gatherings,
MASKS continue to be RECOMMENDED for ALL attendees.
For the protection of others,


Sunday Morning Worship Services:  


Autumn & Winter Schedule

Sunday of Labor Day weekend through Sunday of Memorial Day weekend

  • 8:30 a.m. - Holy Eucharist, Rite II at Holy Cross - this is a quiet service with no music 
  • 9:30 a.m. - Fellowship time in Skiles Hall
  • 11:00 a.m. - Holy Eucharist, Rite II, at Holy Cross with music and hymnody - This service is Live-Streamed via our YouTube Channel
  • 12:00 p.m. - Fellowship time in Skiles Hall

The 11:00 a.m. service from Holy Cross is Live-Streamed via our YouTube Channel.
Click here  to view our Live Streamed and previously recorded services.
Click here to view & download this week's worship leaflet.


Healing & Eucharist Services take place at 5:30 p.m. on Wednesday evenings at Holy Cross.


Weekday Worship Services offered via "Zoom":

Compline at 8:00 p.m. every Monday & Thursday - click  here  to join the Zoom meeting

The "Virtual Waiting Room" opens 15 minutes before each service begins.
(Meeting ID: 894 5800 3478)


Online giving is now available - click here or click "Give Online" in the Navigation Bar at the top of the website.


The Sacrament of Reconciliation: 
This Sacrament is offered at any time by appointment. Please contact the Rector directly at (828) 963-4609 ext. 22

To read recent sermons, visit the Sermons page.
The current Prayer List  is  here.

The Latest Sunday Worship Leaflet is here

The Current Holy Cross Newsletter is here.


This Sunday

Sunday, December 4 - 

The Second Sunday of Advent

  • 8:30 a.m. - Principal Worship Service of Holy Eucharist, Rite II at Holy Cross - this is a quiet service with no music
  • 9:30 a.m. - Fellowship time in Skiles Hall
  • 9:45 a.m. - Adult Christian Education with Katerina Whitley - this will take place in Upper Skiles
  • 11:00 a.m. - "A Service of Nine Lessons & Carols for Advent" - Hear the scriptures which foretell Christ's coming, along with carols, vocal anthems, and the chimes of handbells! - This service is Live-Streamed via our YouTube Channel 
  • 12:00 p.m. - Fellowship time in Skiles Hall

We thank those who will serve this Sunday:

  • Randy McDonough, Crucifer
  • The Holy Cross Vocal Choir
  • The Holy Cross Handbell Choir
  • Elaine Kallestad, Organist and Choir Director

And our Greeters & Ushers: 

  • Jim & Darby Logan

And our Lectors: 

  • Lesson 1: Katerina Whitley, on behalf of the Parishioners of Holy Cross.
  • Lesson 2: Alicia Toomey, on behalf of the Parish Episcopal Church Women.
  • Lesson 3: Sis Kinney, on behalf of the Parish Daughters of the King.
  • Lesson 4: Keith Martin, on behalf of the Parish Choir.
  • Lesson 5: Judy Bondi, on behalf of the Parish Mission & Outreach Commission.
  • Lesson 6: Walter Browning, on behalf of the Valle Crucis Conference Center.
  • Lesson 7: Terry Fulton, on behalf of the Vestry.
  • Lesson 8: Ahren Koenig, on behalf of the Parish Staff.
  • Lesson 9: The Rev. R. Allan McCaslin, Parish Rector.
Next Sunday, December 11 - 

The Third Sunday of Advent

  • 8:30 a.m. - Holy Eucharist, Rite II at Holy Cross - this is a quiet service with no music
  • 9:30 a.m. - Fellowship time in Skiles Hall
  • 9:45 a.m. - Adult Christian Education with Katerina Whitley - this will take place in Upper Skiles
  • 11:00 a.m. - Holy Eucharist, Rite II at Holy Cross - This service is Live-Streamed via our YouTube Channel 
  • 12:00 p.m. - Fellowship time in Skiles Hall


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News & Happenings

December Adult Christian Education Classes

Gather in Skiles Hall on Sunday, December 4th, 11th, and 18th at 9:45 a.m. in upper Skiles Hall as Katerina Whitley provides an overview and group discussion on the Advent Season. We will begin by looking at the tradition of Lessons and Carols, we will examine the great gift of our Creator - that of imagination. We will examine the role of music throughout the centuries in telling the Advent/Christmas story, and above all, throughout the three Sundays, we will focus on the wonder and mystery of the Incarnation. Please come for an experience that honors tradition yet brings newness to habit.

Angel Tree

It's Angel Tree Time! 

There are several children at Valle Crucis school and several residents of The Life Care Center in Banner Elk for whom Holy Cross Church is their only Santa Claus.  We also are helping out our Valle Crucis Teachers with gift cards this year as well. Thank you all in advance for your generosity!
Below is this year's "Virtual Angel Tree" registry and sign-up for gift donations.  Here is how the Angel Tree gift donations will work this year:

  • Sign-up for gift(s) donations via this SignUpGenius link:
  • Bring your wrapped and tagged gift(s) to Skiles Hall. A Christmas tree will be in place after November 26.   
  • Please begin bringing wrapped and tagged gifts starting on Sunday, November 27.
  • All gifts and teacher gift cards need to be delivered to Skiles Hall no later than Sunday, December 11
  • For those buying gifts for Life Care Persons please add a few nice toiletries (lotions, creams, body washes, etc.)

THANK YOU so much for your help!


Coffee Hour Hosts Needed

Coffee Hour is an important time of not only fellowship, but also a time to get to know our visitors and newcomers. This time after each worship is most successful when we have a little more than just coffee to serve. People tend to stay longer and interact more when there is food.

Hosting Coffee Hour means providing light refreshments and a non-coffee beverage. Teams of two volunteers work best. The sign-up sheet can be found on the kitchen serving window ledge in Skiles Hall. Please consider hosting after the upcoming services !


Episcopal Women's Church Potluck

The Episcopal Church Women (ECW) will meet on December 8 at 4:00 p.m. in Skiles Hall for a potluck dinner, so please bring a dish to share! There will be no gift exchange.


Daughters of the King Quiet Day

Daughters of the King (DOK) will host a quiet day on Saturday, December 3 at 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. in Skiles Hall. Coffee and light refreshments will be served. Katerina Whitley will present a program of prayer and quiet reflection followed by lunch. All are welcome to attend! For questions or to RSVP, please contact Sis Kinney at (828) 260-0485 or by email at


Blue Christmas Gathering

Grief and loss are part of the ebb and flow of our lives. Holiday times are especially difficult for those who are alone or needing to be distant due to health issues. Being together with others of faith can be helpful. Each year, near the longest night of the year, family and friends of the Holy Cross community gather in candlelight, to read scripture, remember those who have died, sing songs, sit in silence, and experience God’s presence as the world awaits Christ’s birth. This year, we will gather in Skiles Hall around the hearth on Sunday, December 18 at 4:00 p.m. Please join us. To attend via Zoom, click the following link.


The 103rd Hanging of the Greens

 Just as they have for the past 102 years, all parishioners and friends are invited to gather for the annual Hanging of the Greens in advance of Christmas. We need as many people as possible to help transform the décor of our beloved church from the somber tones of Advent to the glorious brightness of Christmas. Normally we do the greening of the church on the Sunday before Christmas. With Christmas Eve being on a Saturday this year, are planning to meet on Thursday, December 22 at 4:00 p.m. Also, we need a crew on Sunday, December 18 to gather after the 11:00 a.m. worship service to install pew candle holders, window candle holders, and all the candles.
So bring your clippers and a lot of enthusiasm! The garlands and wreaths are purchased but we need folks to find greenery such as fir, white pine, Galax leaves, boxwood, etc. and bring it to the church by Wednesday, December 21. Please let Dedy Traver know if you can help. She may be reached at 828-898-5771 or email
Everyone’s help is needed putting greenery in the windows, hanging wreaths and garlands, etc. There is plenty for everyone to do, including children!


Flower Donations for Altar Guild

The Altar Guild relies upon donations in order to decorate the Church for Christmas. Please give generously using the envelopes provided in the church. Completed forms must be submitted by 5:00 p.m. Sunday, December 18 in order to be included in all Christmas Service Leaflets. Thank you!


Christmas at Holy Cross

Gather amid the quiet beauty of The Church of the Holy Cross for the joyous celebration of The Nativity of our LORD Jesus Christ.

CHRISTMAS EVE: Saturday, December 24
  • 5:00 p.m. - Holy Eucharist, Rite II
  • 7:30 p.m. - Special Music and Carol Singing
  • 8:00 p.m. - Holy Eucharist in celebration of Christmas
CHRISTMAS DAY: Sunday, December 25
  • 10:00 a.m. - "Come just as you Are" Holy Eucharist celebration of prayer and scripture

O Come, Let us adore Him, Christ, the Lord!


Coffee's On

December’s Coffee’s on by Zoom will drop in on December 17th at 10 a.m. Click to here  to join Coffee's On.

Meeting ID: 878 3876 2772


The Salvation Army Personal Need Pantry Drive

The Salvation Army in Avery, Ashe and Watauga Counties is collecting donations for personal needs and hygiene products! Can you help by providing any of the following items?

Most used items include: Dish detergent, feminine hygiene pads, hand soap, laundry pods, men's & women's deodorant, men's & women's disposable razors, paper towels, shampoo, toilet paper and incontinence pads.

Other commonly used items include: Toothpaste, dental floss, body wash, shaving cream, band-aids, sunscreen, tissues, hand sanitizer, household cleaner and dishwasher pods.

Please note that we will not be accepting drop-offs at the Church - take all donations directly to the Salvation Army at 136 Furman Rd, Boone NC 28607. For any questions, please call (828) 262-1005.


Men's Night Out

Please note: We'll be taking three months off during the winter season, but will resume our Men's Night Out gatherings in March 2023.


A Simple Gesture Continues

Food/Grocery Drive for the Hunger & Health Coalition

One in four children in the High Country are hungry. Along with other churches in the area, we have a simple way to meet this immediate need. Green recyclable grocery bags are available in Skiles Hall. Simply fill them with the items listed on the bag and return it to the Welcome Center area in Skiles Hall on the date listed on the bag.  Thank you!


Hospitality House Dinners

Holy Cross parishioners supply Hospitality House with dinners several times a month. This involves teams preparing a dinner for about 100 people.  Each team prepares 1 meal per year for the Hospitality House. Since Covid, some teams have been having the meals catered.  The Valle Crucis Conference Center will cater meals as will F.A.R.M. Cafe and area restaurants. At this time there is a need for more team members for this important mission.  There are funds available, if needed, to help sponsor this service.  If you would like to help, please call Suzie Long at 828-264-0685


Daughters of the King

Daughters of the King (DOK) meets weekly on Wednesday afternoons at 4:00 p.m. in Skiles Hall. The group invites any women of the church interested in finding out more about DOK to join them. Click here to learn more about DOK!


2022 Valle Country Fair

The 2022 Valle Country Fair took place on Saturday, October 15. The Mission & Outreach Commission at Holy Cross Episcopal Church determines, with the Vestry's approval, the outlay of the proceeds from the Valle Country Fair. Abou two-thirds of Fair proceeds are used for emergency calls to the church for such things as rent, utilities, car repairs, medical expenses, etc. The remaining funds go to local non-profit organizations who apply for our grants.


The 2022 grant amount, based upon proceeds from the Fair, was $25,000 and was awarded to the following recipients: 


Children's Council of Watauga County - Builds strong foundations for children's learning and development by strengthening familieis, the early childhood system, and the wider community.

Girls on the Run - Inspires girls to be joyful, healthy, and confident using a fun, experienced-based curriculum which creatively integrates running.

High Country Caregivers - Multi-pronged programs include community education, financial support for health-conscious youth activities and counselling support. They serve grandparents raising their grandchildren in Avery and Watauga Counties. 

LIFE House - Strives to meet the ongoing residential needs of adults with autism and related challenges, as well as serving as a community resource for people of different abilities and their families. They provide diverse social and recreational programming, including summer programs, life skills and vocational training, adaptive sports, support groups, and workshops. 

Mediation and Restorative Justice Center - Strives to reduce the physical, emotional, and financial harm caused by unresolved conflict, litigation, and incarceration by providing meditation, alternative sentencing and other restorative processes that increase the respect, peace, productivity, and safety in the communities served.

Mountain Alliance - Provides transformative experiences and support so that all High Country Teens have the opportunity to lead an empowered, adventurous and service-oriented life, regardless of means or background.

Reaching Avery Ministry - An ecumenical ministry devoted to helping low-income people in Avery County to improve their lives. They provide assistance with food, clothing, prescriptions, fuel, household necessities, emergency shelter and other needs as they relate to a person's ability to meet their basic needs, to be gainfully employed, or care for their family. 

Spirit Ride - Provides children with a wide array of diagnoses the opportunity to learn, grow, and strive to become their ideal selves through equine-related therapeutic and educational activities.

The Jason Project - Strives to provide healthy and rigorous outdoor excursions and challenges where at-risk youth can be encouraged and inspired to rise above their adversities and ecell mentally, spiritually, and in life.

Watauga Co. Schools Extended Learning Centers - Strives to promote the academic mission of Watauga County Schools while providing the working parents of our community a sanctuary of safety as well as intellectual, social, emotional, and physical well-being for their children.