As I finish this message, a group of seven Christ Church folk, led by Senior Warden Rose Robinson, are working on Raise-the-Roof's current project house on Lenox Street in Fair Haven. On Sunday, April 22, we will hear more about the endeavors of Raise-the-Roof as the Shoreline arm of Greater New Haven's Habitat-for-Humanity. Instead of building a new house from the ground up, this house is a gut renovation of a house that has sheltered families since the late 19th century.
Our "confirmands" -- that's church jargon for candidates for Confirmation -- have a busy week ahead of them: On Thursday, April 26, they will have dinner with our Bishops, +Ian Douglas and +Laura Ahrens, at The Commons in Meriden. We will travel together from Park Street, departing at 4:50 p.m.
Beginning Saturday evening, our confirmands and YFNR will be participating in The Big Sleep Out on the Guilford Green. The evening begins with registration at 5:30 p.m. and the Opening at 6 p.m. During the course of the evening, we will be learning together about the lives of folks who find themselves "homeless." Our own Bobbi Stuart will help lead a workshop on the "Economics of Homelessness," -- how just a few bad breaks and/or poor choices can render a person, or a family, homeless. This and other presentations, and a shelter-style supper, will fill the evening, before lights out, in a fenced area, on the Green at 10:30 p.m.; wake-up, clean-up and clear-out will be by 7:30 a.m., Sunday morning.
Although organized primarily by and for young folk, it is open to all ages. The Big Sleep Out came together under the auspices of Columbus House, a major support for homeless folk, and those on the margins of homelessness, in New Haven and beyond. More information is available by clicking here.
When I was with our confirmands, some parents and others, serving at Chapel-on-the-Green in New Haven, on April 8, the organizer used some terms that were new to me. She described the Chapel-on-the-Green;s community as a spectrum of folks who are "housed,'" "un-housed," and "formerly un-housed." We were part of that community, along side all other participants. I found that re-framed perspective helpful.
Also coming up next Saturday, April 28, is the Evening ECW's lunch of soups, breads, fruit and desserts between 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. Be sure and tell your friends and neighbors who might be at the other end of Park Street for the Library's Paperback Book Sale, that a fine lunch awaits them in the Parish Hall! Free-will donations will support the EECW's Parish Hall projects.
Our daytime ECW is reprising their "Roses for Mothers" project this year. Look for announcements and envelopes to honor and remember women who have been important in your life. Gifts over the past several years funded the new white frontal on the altar.
Thursdays Bible Study is on its Eastertide journey through the First Epistle of John. Given John's unwavering belief that "God is love," this should be an entirely lovely journey. The Rectory Forum and Tuesday Suppers are on their parallel journeys, with the rest of the Episcopal Church, in reading through the Acts of the Apostles, with particular portions read and discussed each week. So, there's actually no homework required!
Children's Chapel, Sunday School, and the Middle and High School programs will all meet at their usual times and places this Sunday. These are important Sundays for our Sunday School as they prepare for their Pentecost "Festival" on May 20.
I hope everyone who was on Spring Break this past week had a great time, and that any travels are ending safely! I look forward to seeing you in on Sunday.
In faith, hope and love,
p.s. As I have been writing this, I have been mindful of the funeral for former First Lady Barbara Bush that is happening at the same time in St. Martin's Episcopal Church in Houston, Texas. With her husband, Mrs. Bush was a regular worshiper and active member of their local parishes in Houston, Kennebunkport, and Washington, D.C. We will remember her in the Prayers of the People on Sunday.
May your faithful servant rest in peace,
and may light perpetual shine upon her.
4/22/2018 06:35:11 am
The blog image is "The Good Shepherd," by Julien Dupre, ca. late 19th century, and resides at the California Palace of the Legion of Honor in San Francisco. "Images of women agricultural workers became a popular subject in French painting of the mid-late 19th century. Julien Dupre drew on that popular theme and moved it to allegory, with the naming of a shepherdess as the 'good shepherd.' Christ, the spiritual Good Shepherd, becomes a calming presence without being pictured, simply by the artist's use of sheep, staff/rod, and one who tends the flock."
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