February 23, 2021
Let Us Pray + Presiding Bishop's Message
+ Tuesday Holy Land Discussion
Strengthen us, your servants, O God, to do what we need to do,
and to bear what we need to bear; that by
following the disciplines of wearing, washing and watching,*
and by accepting your gifts to maintain our health through the inspired insights of medical caregivers,
we may, with grateful hearts, be kept safe from disease,
and our communities may be restored to wholeness and health;
through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
BCP, p.459, adapted
*i.e. wearing masks, washing hands, and watching our distance
In a somber message to the Episcopal Church, Presiding Bishop Michael Curry takes stock of where we are in the pandemic, encourages us all to get vaccinated when it's our turn, and puts our response -- as you might expect from him -- in the context of God's call to us to "love God, love your neighbor, and, while your at it, love yourself." You can find it here.
Let us pray for all who are commended to the parish's prayers:
All who are ill, including
Diane L, Kelly Taylor, Philip, Jerry,
Jack's daughter, Jim R, Jason, and Peter;
and for Buster, Dale,
and all who are contending with Covid-19 disease;
for the medical caregivers who minister of God's healing gifts;
and for all facing financial hardship because of the pandemic.
May they all know the healing power of
Christ's presence and love.
We've learned of the February 8th death of former parishioner,
Mary West Marconi, at age 99, on Fletcher Island, FL;
her granddaughter Sarah Lam reported her grandmother's gentle passing brought to a close a "long good-bye."
Therefore, let us pray for the repose of Mary,
and for all who have died --
including the over 500,000 of our fellow citizens
claimed by the coronavirus.
Rest eternal grant to them, O Lord;
may light perpetual shine upon them.
Look with favor, O Lord, upon
David Jones and Janet Moffat,
as they celebrate their birthdays;
may they continue to grow in grace and wisdom.
Send your blessing, O God, upon Diane & David Barker,
as they celebrate the anniversary of their marriage,
that their home may continue a haven of blessing and peace.
Jimmy C, Patrick and family, Felipe, Diane L, Richard D, Andrew M, Alice M, Elizabeth Ann, Parker, Webb, Jill, Andrew E, Ed C, Pastor Bryan Meyers, Bob C, Carol U, Sue S, George H, Alex & John H, Jeremy H, Shelly, Philippe, Kate, Frank, Jack, Judy & Ed S, Michael M, Richard D, Dave K, Brian A, Annie, John, Joan G., Lois C., Winnie Z, Bernie and family, Susie & Paul, Pam McG, Julie H, Murray E., Brooke & family, Kate S., Tracy M., Carl,
Michael S, Joanne N-R, Madeline H, and Kelly G,
Also: Paul D, Susan S, Linda B, Charlie K, Anne C, Mark S, Angela G, Maria, Bob, Olivia, and Jo B.
Please also remember: St. Luke’s School & Church in Martel (Haiti)
To add names and concerns for Wednesday's and Sunday's intercessions, and this "Let Us Pray" letter, please send them to YFNR at firstname.lastname@example.org with any details you care to share. Names will move to the longer term list upon request.
Our Tuesday Lenten Discussion, "A River Through the Desert," begins this evening at 7p.m. We are taking advantage of a "Virtual Lenten Pilgrimage" from St. George's College in Jerusalem. This evening's focus explores the desert/wilderness setting for Sunday's Gospel reading. The College's dean Richard Sewell leads the video and provides a discussion guide. Here's his introduction to the series. And I've pulled up some photos from my experiences of the Holy Land's desert. Click here to link to this evening's conversation.
Wednesday's Order for Evening will combine observances of St. Matthias' Day, and the Lenten Ember Days of prayer for all of us in our various callings. The livestream of the services will start before Noon and 7p.m. at www.facebook.com/cecguilford.
Thursday Bible Study continues February 25 at 9:30a.m. with the songs and dances (?!) of the Hebrew people following their deliverance at the Red (Reed?) Sea. Join the conversation via this new Zoom code. There are no prerequisites or homework!
Rooted in Hope in a Time of Anxiety: A Day for Laity -- Join our bishops and laity from across the Episcopal Church in Connecticut on Saturday, February 27, for a day of spiritual refreshment and learning. Living in the midst of chronic anxiety impacts all of us; our relationships with our children, spouses/partners, family, friends, colleagues, and faith communities. Together we will learn about the predictable ways humans react to chronic anxiety from Dr. David Olsen, a nationally recognized expert on the impact of anxiety on families and churches. We will also explore patterns of behavior that can help alleviate stress and anxiety. Interspersed throughout the day our chaplains from the Bethany House of Prayer will offer opportunities for reflection, meditation, and prayer.
Note: This is a free event, 9:30a.m. to 2:30p.m., open to all laity in ECCT; preregistration is required in order to receive the Zoom link. To register click here.
Our experiment continues -- keeping the side door, closest to the Guild Room, unlocked between 10a.m. and 3p.m. This provides an opportunity for a quiet moment of prayer in the church, likely alone, as well as to pick up a candle stub to light during prayers at home.
On Sunday, our morning worship continues online with our own Holy Eucharist at 10a.m. Depending upon which forecast you look, Prayers in the Garden (or perhaps on the driveway) appear to be entirely possible on Sunday, February 28, at 1p.m.
And another thought about keeping this Lenten season. If ever there were a Lent where wit, along with serious spiritual insight, was welcome, this is that Lent! If you haven't tried "Lent Madness," I commend it to you. It's a clever introduction to 32 saints of the Church -- most of whom are not widely known -- who are in "competition" for the "Golden Halo." And we get to participate in deciding who receives it! Of course, the "Golden halo" aspect is totally bogus. Nonetheless, the light of Christ which shines through these saints who have gone before us, is totally genuine. Find it here: www.LentMadness.org .
O God, the King of saints, we praise and glorify
your holy Name for all your servants
who have finished their course in your faith and fear: ...
for the holy patriarchs, prophets, apostles, and martyrs;
and for all your righteous servants, known to us and unknown; and we pray that, encouraged by their examples,
aided by their prayers, and strengthened by their fellowship,
we also may be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light; through the merits of your Son Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
BCP, p. 504
In the faith, hope and love of Christ,
Your Friendly Neighborhood Rector
We feature various authors from around our parish, commenting on topics of interest to our community. Enjoy! Comment if you are so moved!