St. Dunstan (circa 909-988),
English prelate, statesman and reformer after whom this community of faith is named.
Dunstan, who was born near Glastonbury, England and educated by Irish clerics, became accomplished in the arts of metalworking, manuscript illumination, and music. He rejoined the court of Athelstan, King of England, and then became a monk at Glastonbury. In about 940, Edmund I, Athelstan's successor, appointed him Abbot of Glastonbury. Dunstan expanded the Abbey, which became a famous school under his administration. After Edred (who reigned 946-955) succeeded to the throne, Dunstan became virtual ruler of the kingdom and instituted religious reforms and policies for political unification and the establishment of royal authority. Under King Edred a favorable peace with the Danes was accomplished. That peace was credited to Dunstan. When Edwy became King in 955, Dunstan fell into disfavor for reproving his conduct, was outlawed, and fled to Flanders, where he took refuge in the Abbey of Mont Blandin, near Ghent, one of the European centers of the Benedictine monastic revival. He was recalled to England in 957 by Edwy's brother Edgar, then King of Mercia and Northumbria, and later, king of the entire English kingdom, who appointed Dunstan, successively, bishop of Worchester (958), bishop of London (959), and archbishop of Canterbury (960). Once again the most influential figure in the kingdom. Dunstan introduced monastic reforms based on a strict observance of the Benedictine rule, with which he had become acquainted during his exile. He rebuilt churches and promoted education. When Edgar died, Dunstan succeeded in placing the king's son, later Edward the Martyr, on the throne. When Edward was murdered in 975, Dunstan's influence at court ended, and he retired to Canterbury, where he spent the remainder of his life working for the spiritual and temporal improvement of the people, building and restoring churches, establishing schools, judging suits, defending the widow and the orphan, promoting peace, and enforcing respect for purity. He practiced his handicrafts of making bells and organs, and illuminating the books in the cathedral library. He encouraged and protected scholars from all lands who came to England, and was unwearied as a teacher of boys in the cathedral school. He died on May19, 988.
Dunstan is regarded as one of the great Anglo-Saxon saints, and has been called one of the makers of England. Dunstan is a patron saint of armorers, blacksmiths, goldsmiths, locksmiths and musicians. In art he is often represented holding an evil spirit's nose in a pair of tongs. St. Dunstan's feast day is May 19.
HISTORY OF CHURCH OF ST. DUNSTAN IN MINEOLA
Almost 1000 years later, in the summer of 1947, the Rev. Henry Fullerton, accompanied by the Rev. T.P. Ball, Chaplain to the Bishop of Dallas, visited Mineola, Texas, seeking persons interested in organizing an Episcopal Mission in the community. The first meeting of the Episcopalians in Mineola was held during the second week of July, 1947, at the home of Mrs. Helen Wade. Evening Prayer was held on July 20,1947. There were eight people in attendance. The first celebration of the Holy Eucharist was held on July 21,1947, at the McDaniel home with six present. Following the receipt of a letter of commitment containing twelve signatures, the small group became a Mission Church. The first Holy Baptism at Saint Dunstan's was on August 31, 1947. The first Confirmation was on October 13,1947. Bishop C. Avery Mason confirmed and preached with twenty-seven in attendance.
Saint Dunstan's Episcopal Church broke ground for a Parish Hall at 800 N. Johnson St., Mineola, on December 5, 1948. On Palm Sunday, April 10,1949, the first service was held in the newly constructed Parish Hall. Thirty-nine were present. The first Church School was held on October 1, 1949, with sixteen students present. The first marriage held at St. Dunstan's was that of Everett and Beth Nix.
On April 27,1952, the first service was held in the new church building. By September, 1954 air-conditioning had been installed in the building. Adult Bible Study following Evening Prayer was begun in January 1955. Parish status was reached by January 1,1956.
The Rev. Henry Fullerton was the parish priest at Saint Dunstan's from its beginning until May 1963. The Rev. Henry Roberts became the parish priest in 1963 for approximately eight months. The Rev. Ralph Woods became the parish priest in September, 1964, and retired in 1983. The Rev. Michael Metcalf succeeded Fr. Woods, and remained with St. Dunstan's until 1986, when he accepted a call to a church in Dallas. Fr. Metcalf was the first priest at St. Dunstan's to be married with a family. The Rev. R. E. McCrary and his family came to St. Dunstan's in 1987, and remained until his death on January 23,2001. During this time the construction of the new office wing and covered porch was completed and consecrated by Bishop Donis.
The Rev. Thomas A. Pantle succeeded Fr. McCray, and celebrated his first Holy Eucharist at St. Dunstan's on September 1, 2002. During the 13 years that Fr. Pantle+ has served here, the church has grown both in membership and the physical plant. The Columbarium, Memorial Wall and Courtyard was begun in 2004 and completed a year later.
During 2004 the need to increase the physical plant was discussed informally among the members. The discussion in 2006 led to the action of the Vestry to begin planning for physical expansion and aparking lot. The expansion of the physical plant was formally dedicated by Bishop James M. Stanton in an evening service.
Because of a bequeath in the will of Fr. Fullerton, the first rector of St. Dunstan, we were also able to enlarge the Nave, rewire, relight, and repaint the Nave of the church, finish the standing seam metal roof over the old buildings. In addition we were able to make the old kitchen area into a working sacristy and vesting sacristy for the clergy, lay readers, and acolytes. The fulfillment of the total plan was accomplished in October 2014 with the completion of the paved parking lot with designated markings.
St. Dustan is a small rural parish within the Diocese of Dallas. But as you can see by the website, the church and its members are involved in many activities outside of just St. Dunstan.
We also look after each others needs with in the parish.