|Parish Post, November, 2010||November 1, 2010|
|➤Parish Post, October, 2010||October 1, 2010|
|Parish Post, September, 2010||September 1, 2010|
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|Parish Post, July, 2010||July 1, 2010|
|Parish Post, June 2010||June 1, 2010|
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|Parish Post, Jan, 2010||January 1, 2010|
Parish Post, October, 2010
ST. PETER’S PARISH POST
Being Christ’s Body
The time I spent with people near death over a period of years while I worked for Mary Washington Hospice changed my outlook on life in many ways. I came to realize that every breath each of us is privileged to take is a gift from God, and that each moment of life is one to treasure. I found, as I spent time with people who were in the process of dying, that very few of them ever focused much at all on their material possessions as they prepared for death. Instead, they wanted to talk about what they had done with their lives, and how what they had done had given meaning to their lives.
As disciples of Jesus, what we do in our lives takes on meaning in the context of our discipleship.
As a disciple of Jesus, what does God want me to do with my life, whether I’m young or old, and the wealth that I have, whether I’m rich or poor?
Wealth includes not only the material things that God has placed into our care, but also things like our health, our time, the unique talents that each one of us has. We can use all of these things as disciples of Jesus, to continue the work that he began during his time on earth with us.
Jesus himself described that work in Luke, Chapter 4, verses 18-19 as he quoted from the prophet Isaiah. “The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he has anointed me to bring good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim release to the captives, and recovery of sight to the blind, to let the oppressed go free, to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.”
In all of the gospels, we follow Jesus as he carries out his work in the world, work that included loving people, forgiving people, healing people, casting out the demons that held people captive, feeding the people, and spreading the good news of God to all, both rich and poor.
How do we continue the work of Jesus today as his disciples? The answer to that question will be unique to each one of us, based on the particular gifts God has given each of us to use to promote God’s purposes here on earth.
As a church we also ask ourselves this question. “How do we at St Peter’s come together to continue the work of Jesus, to promote God’s purposes here on earth?” The many answers to this question will be complex and intricate, much like the beautiful designs we see as we look into a kaleidoscope, as we mingle our many gifts and talents together into life giving ministries for the world that will be particular to us, the gathered together people of St Peter’s.
Our continued study and prayerful meditation on scripture and the words of Jesus himself guide us as we think about how to use all of the things that God has blessed us with on God’s behalf, both as individuals and as our church. I also commend to you the following meditation by St Teresa of Avila of Spain, a Carmelite nun who was a mystic, a reformer and a writer who lived from 1515-1582. She is the author of The Interior Castle, a famous book on prayer.
Christ Has No Body
Christ has no body but yours,
No hands, no feet on earth but yours,
Yours are the eyes with which he looks
Compassion on this world,
Yours are the feet with which he walks to do good,
Yours are the hands, with which he blesses all the world.
Yours are the hands, yours are the feet,
Yours are the eyes, you are his body.
Christ has no body now but yours,
No hands, no feet on earth but yours,
Yours are the eyes with which he looks
compassion on this world.
Christ has no body now on earth but yours.
A message from your Stewardship Chairman
This month you are being asked to make your pledge in support of your church for the upcoming year, 2011, and you find yourself thinking about how much the pledge should be. Perhaps one of the following would be the answer you would choose.
I give because the Bible tells me I should.
I certainly wouldn’t want anyone to see me not putting something in the plate.
I get something back for my money because of the music, fellowship, etc.
I give to help pay the church’s expenses.
I give since all I have comes from God including the amount I pledge.
As things stand now the church’s expenditures for 2011 are projected to be 30% above this year’s level and so your support is needed. While each of us must make the decision as to how much we feel comfortable to give, hopefully you will push your comfort level and increase your pledge amount.
Will you be ON BOARD as your church moves in to 2011?
Pledge cards will be distributed soon. Please return in the offering plate or mail to the treasurer by Oct. 24th.
The Blessing of the Pets Oct. 2
We will gather at 4PM this Saturday in the Parish House yard for the Blessing of the Pets. This tradition has developed over the years as a way to remember the love that St Francis of Assisi had for all of God’s creatures. As we love and care for the creatures with which we’ve been entrusted, day by day, we also are reminded of God’s love and care for us. So bring your pet for a blessing, and we will enjoy a time of fellowship with one another and with the creatures who have blessed us so deeply. Both human and pet snacks will be available!
“Blessed are you, Lord God, maker of all living creatures. You called forth fish in the sea, birds in the air and animals on the land. You inspired St. Francis to call all of them his brothers and sisters. We ask you to bless this pet. By the power of your love, enable it to live according to your plan. May we always praise you for all your beauty in creation. Blessed are you, Lord our God, in all your creatures! Amen (Traditional Franciscan pet blessing)
ECW Yard Sale – Another Successful Day –
$400 raised for Charity – Most items sold for 25 cents
Rocking Chair purchased by ECW for Nursery
The ECW thanks all who helped with the yard sale that took place on Saturday, September 25th, on what had to be one of the hottest days of the year. A special thanks goes to Jim and BJ Anderson who took a truckload of donations from the yard sale all the way to the Tappahannock Goodwill after the yard sale ended. And in addition, a special thanks goes to the members of Christ Church, Spotsylvania, Dave Moynahan and Ray Crafton, and their two teenage helpers, who showed up to help pack up and carry away two truckloads of what was left so that those items can be sold at the Christ Church Thrift Shop. Thanks to Catherine too for taking all the left over clothes to Goodwill in Fredericksburg. We appreciate Steve who carried away the trash too! Great helpers all!
St. Peter’s ECW – Fall Fundraiser
Halloween Dinner Dance
Saturday, October 30, 2010 at 6:00 PM at the Barn
See Crystal for Tickets $25 each
Youth Sunday School
Catherine has been meeting with the older children to help them prepare to serve as acolytes. Terri Harrison and Elizabeth Heimbach have also been working with the children. They are using the first unit of The Chalice series which focuses on material from the Old Testament. Here are the stories in the unit.
Session 1: “Joshua” emphasizes his example as a servant of God. He challenged the Hebrew people to do what was right and good in God’s sight and led them into the Promised Land. (Joshua 1:1-2)
Session 2: “Deborah” tells the story of a wise woman and prophet. She helped amass an army to defeat a well-armed enemy who threatened the Hebrew’s peaceful existence. She joined Barak, a military leader, to provide moral support for the troops. (Judges 4:4-5)
Session 3: “Gideon” was chosen to battle against the Midianites who threatened the Hebrews about 100 years after Deborah’s victories. Gideon protested that he was too young and weak for the task, but ultimately obeyed God. With God’s help, he won a victory over the Midianites. (Judges 6:14-16)
Session 4: “Samuel” was a priest and prophet who was called to help Israel establish a monarchy. He served in the temple with Eli, and grew up to be a priest, judge and prophet. He anointed Saul as the first king and later anointed David as Saul’s successor. (I Samuel 1:20; 3:19)
Session 5: “Ruth” recalls the story of the Moabite woman who remained faithful to her mother-in-law, Naomi, after the death of Ruth’s husband. This session describes how she was permitted to glean for wheat in the field of Boaz. She later married her benefactor and they had a son, Obed, the grandfather of King David.(Ruth 2:2-4)
Session 6: “David” tells the story of the restoration of the Ark of the Covenant to a place of honor in Jerusalem. The Ark was a symbol of God’s presence and Israel’s most sacred object. (II Samuel 6:12)
Session 7: “Solomon” describes the building of the temple in Jerusalem. Having completed the temple of his father David’s dreams, King Solomon presided at its dedication with prayers and offerings. (I Kings 8:2-23a)
Session 8: “Josiah” focuses on one of the good kings of Judah. Josiah came to the throne when he was only eight years old. He later called the people to be faithful once again to God. While restoring the temple, an old text reaffirming the covenant with God was discovered that is believed to be the Book of Deuteronomy. (II Chronicles 34:1-2a)
Session 9: “God’s Saints Rejoice” helps learners celebrate all those people, past and present, who have been faithful to God. The saints include the people in the stories from the unit and both the famous and ordinary people who have been faithful to God. The communion of saints includes all of us who continue to seek God.(II Chronicles 6:41)
from Episcopal Children’s Curriculum
“Pumpkins on the Farm” Oct. 17th for the Children
Cookie and Johnny have invited the Sunday School Children to come to the farm on Oct. 17th at 3pm to see the tractors and decorate pumpkins for themselves and for the ECW Barn Party to be held there later. Cookie’s grandchildren will be there and you are invited to bring your “Grands” too. Come on down to the farm—8123 Camden Rd. and join in the fun. Refreshments served! RSVP to Terri or Cookie.
Village Dinner Rice Pudding – A hit last month!
REMEMBER OCT. 6
1/2 CUP WATER
1/2 CUP UNCOOKED INSTANT RICE Mashed Potatoes
3 EGGS SLIGHTLY BEATEN
3/4 CUP SUGAR
2 TEASPOONS VANILLA
1/4 TEASPOON SALT
2 1/2 CUPS MILK, SCALDED (I heat my mild in microwave)
1/2 CUP RAISINS (GIVE OR TAKE )
1/4 TEASPOON CINNAMON
NUTMEG (TO TASTE)
1 Heat oven to 350 degrees. Boil water, stir in rice: Cover and let stand 5 minutes.
2. Blend eggs, sugar, vanilla and salt. gradually stir in heated milk. mix in cooked rice, cinnamon and nutmeg.
3. Pour into ungreased 1 1/2 quart casserole dish and place dish into 1 1/4 inches of hot water. sprinkle top with cinnamon if desired.
4. Bake appox. 60-70 minutes or until knife comes out clean halfway between center and edge. remove casserole from water. serve warm or cool If desired serve with fruit toppings, whip cream, etc.
Note from Eunice: I doubled each ingredient to fit a 9” X 13” casserole dish.
REMEMBER OCT. 6
Next VillageDinner: Meat Loaf
Choc. Cherry Cake
Reservations with Eunice !
St. Peter’s CELEBRATES 175 YEARS IN HIS SERVICE
“MUSIC THROUGH THE YEARS”
HISTORIC TRACKER ORGAN CONCERT
PRESENTED BY TOM MARSHALL
OCTOBER 10, 2010
Tom Marshall, organist, harpsichordist, and forte pianist, combines an impressive musical personality with the rare ability to integrate recent research into performance practice, for both the 17th century instrument & the modern organ. He has been a key figure in organizing and producing hundreds of “historically informed” performances at Williamsburg. His interest in historical tuning systems allows for an expressive dimension sometimes neglected in performances. He has made seven study tours of Europe studying surviving organs from the 15th to 19th century. He is a member of the Southeastern Historical Keyboard Society. He is organist for the Williamsburg United Methodist Church and a member of the faculty at William and Mary. He has been an active member of the American Guild of Organist since 1970. He loves coming to St. Peter’s!
ECW 119th Annual Meeting at St. George’s Oct. 21st
“Feeling the Spirit Through God’s Glorious Grace”
All women of St. Peter’s are invited to attend this wonderful meeting in Fredericksburg which celebrates “God’s Glorious Grace.” Keynote speaker will be The Rt. Rev. Edwin F. Gulick, Jr. who will be Assistant Bishop of the Diocese of Virginia on Jan. 1, 2011.
The day will begin with fellowship and exhibits of Ministries at Work in the Diocese. Lunch is included in the $20 Registration fee. Tours of the newly renovated church will be available. Holy Eucharist at 1:30 will conclude the meeting. See Cookie if you can go. (Cookie serves as Secretary of the Diocesan ECW Board as well as Dominican Republic Mission Chair.)
ECW Discusses Bishop’s Letter
Important Letter from Bishop Shannon Tuesday, September 14, 2010
Dear Diocesan Family,
Five listening sessions will be held across the diocese over the next several weeks entitled "Listen and Be Heard: Faithful Sexuality and the Blessing of Same-Gender Unions." Ever since these forums were first announced, I have heard a variety of responses. I have heard from people who feel that this is all about liberalism and who simply cannot believe that we would even have such discussions in the first place. At the same time, I have heard from others who feel that this is all about stalling and who simply cannot believe that we are having yet more talk. Very many of you are uncomfortable with extreme positions and describe yourselves as being "in the middle" with understanding and sympathies for both sides. Many others are largely confused in profoundly mixed feelings. It is also my experience that a large number of you feel that you have not had the opportunity to be heard and to listen on these issues in a safe environment.
Such a range of positions and experience is itself the reason why we need to go about this conversation in a different way. As the Church, the Body of Christ, we certainly must be able to come together in good faith and good will in order to engage and understand one another, if only to agree to disagree.
So I want to clarify for you what these listening sessions are and what they are not. First, I know that from 2003 we have some very painful history of such sessions in our diocese. At that time, we experienced a substantial amount of inappropriate anger. That history began to heal with the successful and much appreciated Town Hall meetings last year. Allow me to ask each one of you personally to help us continue that good work for the good of all. I believe that the listening process we are going to undertake should prevent a repeat of that difficult chapter.
The bulk of the time will be in small groups in which each person present will have the opportunity to speak and be heard in answer to specific questions about faithful sexuality and the blessings of same gender unions. I have asked that the information be gathered in a way that I can use it as a reference in leadership as your bishop. The opinions expressed in all groups will be posted for all to see and consider by the evening’s end. I will study your comments very carefully, as will the Standing Committee. I need to hear from you, and you should be assured to know that you are, by this process, reaching your diocesan leadership in a truly meaningful way.
The focus of these sessions is to listen and to be heard; it is not on convincing, cajoling, or changing one another’s minds. These forums will not be open-microphone crossfire debates, nor will they be voting sessions. I will speak at the end of each session about what I heard during the session and share a small piece of my journey with these issues.
Why are these listening sessions necessary, and why should you attend? These sessions are truly intended to be what the title suggests – a time to listen to one another. The people of the Diocese of Virginia have been grappling with issues of human sexuality for over 30 years. During much of that time, however, diocesan conversations took place in task groups or dialogue groups that were appointed for that purpose. The conversations have not always taken place more widely and have not always included the people in the pews of our congregations. It is my desire to broaden the conversation and to give every person in our diocese an opportunity to speak and to be heard on the important matters of faithful sexuality.
I also want to make clear that these sessions are separate and distinct from the work the R-14s Task Group is doing. You may remember that Council passed a resolution that requested that I empanel a group of clergy and lay people, including lawyers and experts on canon law, to recommend consistent standards should services of blessing same-gender unions be authorized at some point. I appointed the requested group in the spring of this year and they have been working faithfully to prepare their report for the Executive Board. The timing of this work parallels the listening sessions, but the work is not tied together. Please be assured that the listening sessions are not simply for show. I am committed to ensuring this process is authentic.
(The closest session for St. Peter’s is Wednesday, November 3, St. John’s, Tappahannock, 4:00-6:00 p.m. The ECW encourages all to come and “listen”. Call Marion or Johnny if you need a ride.)
In closing, I strongly believe these forums have the potential of forging a new way for the Diocese of Virginia to be together in contentious times. I look forward to undertaking this vitally important work with you, and I remain confident that God’s grace will prevail upon us and upon our common life as a diocese.
Faithfully yours in Christ,
Shannon Sherwood Johnston, Bishop of Virginia
Dancing With God
When I meditated on the word Guidance,
I kept seeing "dance" at the end of the word.
I remember reading that doing God’s will is a lot like dancing.
When two people try to lead, nothing feels right.
The movement doesn’t flow with the music,
and everything is quite uncomfortable and jerky.
When one person realizes that, and lets the other lead,
both bodies begin to flow with the music..
One gives gentle cues, perhaps with a nudge to the back
or by pressing Lightly in one direction or another.
It’s as if two become one body, moving beautifully.
The dance takes surrender, willingness,
and attentiveness from one person
and gentle guidance and skill from the other.
My eyes drew back to the word Guidance.
When I saw "G": I thought of God, followed by "u" and "i".
"God, "u" and "i" dance."
God, you, and I dance.
As I lowered my head, I became willing to trust
that I would getguidance about my life.
Once again, I became willing to let God lead.
My prayer for you today is that God’s blessings
and mercies are upon you on this day and everyday.
May you abide in God, as God abides in you.
Dance together with God, trusting God to lead
and to guide you through each season of your life.
(Read by Eunice Key, Hostess at the Sept. 14, 2010 ECW Meeting.)
Welcome Brad Volland
We welcome Brad Volland as our organist and choir director. Brad has agreed to be with us at least through Christmas and we are so grateful for his willingness to join us.
Brad graduated with a degree in Church Music from Virginia Commonwealth University in 1974. Earlier, he studied organ with Harold Abmyer at the Fredericksburg Methodist Church for 9 years and later became their organist for 10 years. In addition, he has been employed as a para-legal for 31 years, including the last 15 years for Catherine M. Saller. In recent years, he has served several Episcopal Churches as an interim or supply organist, including Aquia, Trinity and St George’s.