Guest Preacher and Celebrant: This Sunday the Rev. Frank Wilson will be with us as guest preacher and celebrant in both services. Frank was Associate to the Rector with rector Jerry Zeller in our parish’s early days. Frank is an accomplished musician and writer. G. Yandell
The Broadcast Team Needs You! The parish Broadcast Team really needs at least one additional person to operate the soundboard in the production booth. Please consider volunteering to help as this team is responsible for the successful broadcasting of our 10:30 service and also providing it on Facebook, YouTube, and the church website. The soundboard may look complicated, but it is not and there is no experience necessary. We will train you and help you along the way as you become more comfortable with it. Please contact the office if you are interested in helping the team.
Wonderful Wednesday – August 17: Mark your calendars now for the next Wonderful Wednesday at 5:00 on August 17 at the Bent Tree pavilion. These gatherings include a simple outdoor Eucharist, potluck picnic, and fellowship. This month we will host a cookout and make hamburgers, hotdogs, veggie burgers, and condiments. Tea, water, plates, and utensils are also provided. Please bring a side dish or dessert. BYOB if you choose. G. Yandell
Be Extra Vigilant on Email and Social Media: We’ve experienced a recent uptick in scam emails in the past couple of weeks and we want to remind everyone to be extra careful to protect yourselves from these con artists. They are getting trickier! In one recent incident, a church leader supposedly sent a request for a directory to someone, who replied to the email that Christie in the office would be able to help with the request and copied Christie. Christie felt something was off and noted the email address was not that of the church leader but something that might be easily overlooked (firstname.lastname@example.org). Christie then received an email from this same email addressing her by name, making the same request, and signing with the church leader’s name. Christie called the church leader directly and confirmed that the email was not from them. Email addresses might not always be a giveaway, however. In an example last week, several people received an email from one of our members and the email address was indeed the member’s email. Though the speech pattern was not what we would expect of this church member and the request to reply only by email was odd, a few people did reply to the email. Two received response emails asking for money and they immediately knew it was a scam. Speech patterns and gut feelings were more telling in that example. And recently a bank warning highlighted a new social media scam. Financial assistance is requested in the form of gift cards. After the gift cards are sent, the scammer claims the cards don’t work and the scammer gives instructions that actually lead the victim to call a fake phone number. They are then requested to scan a QR code at a Bitcoin ATM…and the victim’s account is quickly drained. One recent email scam received looks like it comes from a common mortgage company and highlights their new program to fight fraud…then requests you click a link and provide your password. Following is a short list mixed with some advice from Google of things you can do to protect yourself:
- Look at the sending email address; if it doesn’t match the email you have for that person, it is likely not them (not always foolproof).
- Never respond to requests for private information.
- Don’t click links, download files, enter passwords, etc. from untrustworthy or unknown senders.
- Never enter your password after clicking a link in a message.
- Beware of messages that sound urgent and request your help, especially when they request to correspond via email only.
- Know that when you’re on the computer you can hover your cursor over a link before clicking on it and it will show the URL (address) of the web page; if this doesn’t match the description of the link, it might be leading you to a phishing site.
- Trust your instincts. If something feels off in the way something is being said or what is being said, try calling the person to ask them if they sent you the email.
- Rather than clicking a link in an email from a company or organization you usually trust, like Amazon, UPS, your bank, etc., use your browser to access the site directly and check your messages and account from there (not an email link). Scammers can make their emails look like — and sound like — they are legitimate to trick you into clicking a link.
Ukraine Relief: For links to donate to the International Disaster Response Fund and a list of other organizations you might consider if you wish to help Ukraine relief efforts, please visit our home page at holyfamilyepiscopalchurch.net.