An Invitation for the Rainy Season

The fundamentals of football are simple: a team earns points by carrying the ball over the opposing goal line or by kicking the ball over the goal posts. Knowing this much, you can watch a football game and get a general sense of what is going on, but you’ll miss a lot of things that a fan enjoys.

The fundamentals of visiting France are simple: good food, historical sites, and pretty landscapes. Knowing this much, you can visit France and get something out of it, but you might walk right by a fascinating location that a student of French culture or history could have pointed out.

The fundamentals of Christianity are simple: God, the creator of the universe, sent his son, Jesus, to live and die to save us from sin, evil, and death. Jesus’ early followers wrote about their experiences and those books are collected in the New Testament. Knowing this much, you can visit a Christian church and get a general sense of what is going on, but you’ll miss a lot. Christians have been studying the New Testament for two thousand years. That’s a lot longer than football and even France have been around. There are a lot of wonderful things to discover. You may be a beginner, wondering what is going on with the bread and wine; you may be a Christian from childhood who never received instruction beyond juvenile Bible stories; you may have a historical interest in how and when the Nicene Creed was written. One of the glories of the Anglican tradition is that questions are encouraged. We will work with you to find answers.  

As the seasons change, the increasing rain and gloom encourage indoor activities. One of the most exciting intellectual adventures you can have is learning about Jesus and the Christian Church, joining centuries of great minds around the world who have followed the same path. We invite you to join us. Bring your questions.

Our new Covid worship accommodations are drive through Eucharist at 9:00 am on Sunday. Stay is your car and we will bring communion to you! There is no music, sermon, or full liturgy at this pre-consecrated Eucharist. This will no longer be offered in November 2020 and going forward.

Inside the church our Mass is celebrated at 10:00 am on Sunday mornings. This is a complete liturgy with music, the Mass and a sermon. Masks are required and social distancing. We are celebrating from the BCP 2019 prayer book.

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From All Saints Catholic Church in Manassas, VA
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The whole family in heaven and earth.1

One God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all.2 Ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus.3 That in the dispensation of the fulness of times, he might gather together in one all things in Christ, both which are in heaven, and which are on earth; even in him.4

He is not ashamed to call them brethren.5 Behold my mother and my brethren! Whosoever shall do the will of my Father which is in heaven, the same is my brother, and sister, and mother.6 Go to my brethren, and say unto them, I ascend unto my Father, and your Father.7

I saw under the altar the souls of them that were slain for the word of God, and for the testimony which they held: … and white robes were given unto every one of them; and it was said unto them, that they should rest for a little season, until their fellow-servants also and their brethren, that should be killed as they were, should be fulfilled.8 That they without us should not be made perfect.9


1Eph 3:15; 2Eph 4:6; 3Gal 3:26; 4Eph 1:10; 5Heb 2:11; 6Mat 12:49,50; 7Joh 20:17; 8Rev 6:9-11; 9Heb 11:40;

From Bagster’s Daily Light (K.J.V.)

Tomorrow Sunday Oct. 11th at 10:00 am we consider the Kingdom of God from Matthew’s Gospel. Join us at the Heavenly Banquet, everyone’s welcome!

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A Hymn you can Sing at Home!

We are pleased to be back worshipping inside the church while celebrating a full Eucharist. We have limited our singing to “service music”. Due to mask restrictions it can be hard to sing hymns for some without getting short of breath. We also acknowledge that a community choir practice back in March brought about one of the first group exposures to the Corona virus in Mt. Vernon, WA. Do not despaire, here is a hymn you can sing at home:

God the Omnipotent! King who ordainest thunder thy clarion and lightning thy sword;

Show forth thy pity on high where thou reignest;

Give to us peace in our time, O Lord.

God the All-merciful! Earth hath forsaken thy ways all holy and slighted thy word;

Bid not thy wrath in its terrors awaken; 

Give to us peace in our time, O Lord.

The words were written in 1842 by Henry Chorley, an English writer and critic of literature and music. The words echo a passage from the Book of Revelation, 19:6: The Lord God omnipotent reigneth (as the King James version has it). Two more verses were added in 1870 by John Ellerton, an English chaplain and hymn editor.

The tune was originally titled “God Save the Tsar!” It was written by Alexei Lvov and chosen as the national anthem of Tsarist Russia from a competition in 1833. It was quoted in several compositions by Tchaikovsky, memorably in the 1812 Overture. Its majestic tones make it a good match for Chorley’s powerful words. 

This hymn reminds us of some of the paradoxes of God. God is omnipotent, in charge of the entire universe, and in some moods we would like God to rise with thunder and lightning to defeat sin and vindicate virtue. On the other hand, we recall that we are sinners and that we would deserve to be overwhelmed in any such divine uprising, so we ask for pity and mercy. Finally, we confidently ask the God of the universe to look down on this tiny planet and give us peace. Why are we confident? Because God’s son, Jesus, came to this tiny planet and said, “Peace be with you!” 

Of course, we are not in charge of the universe and we have no power to grant our own prayers. God will do what is best, whether we can see it or not. But Jesus instructed us to address prayers to God, and we believe that praise and petitions for mercy and peace are among the prayers that he approves. You are welcome to join us for these prayers.  We are currently offering a limited drive through communion from 9:00 am to 9:30 am on Sunday mornings. Stay in your car, masks are not required. Just pull up to the red doors and we will come out to meet you. Following the drive through Eucharist, we celebrate Mass, inside the church at 10:00am. Masks are required, as is social distancing. We will make sure you have what you need to worship safely inside the church. May all be blessed.

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A call to Friday night prayer

God shall judge the secrets of men by Jesus Christ.1

Judge nothing before the time, until the Lord come, who both will bring to light the hidden things of darkness, and will make manifest the counsels of the hearts: and then shall every man have praise of God.2 The Father judgeth no man, but hath committed all judgment unto the Son: because he is the Son of man.3 The Son of God … hath his eyes like unto a flame of fire.4

They say, How doth God know? and is there knowledge in the most High?5 These things thou hast done, and I kept silence; thou thoughtest that I was altogether such an one as thyself: but I will reprove thee, and set them in order before thine eyes.6 There is nothing covered, that shall not be revealed; neither hid, that shall not be known.7

Lord, all my desire is before thee; and my groaning is not hid from thee.8 Examine me, O Lord, and prove me; try my reins and my heart.9


1Rom 2:16; 21Co 4:5; 3Joh 5:22,27; 4Rev 2:18; 5Psa 73:11; 6Psa 50:21; 7Luk 12:2; 8Psa 38:9; 9Psa 26:2;

From Bagster’s Daily Light K.J.V.

Coming Judgment of the Secrets of Men - Charles Spurgeon Sermon | Charles spurgeon, Sermon, Spurgeon
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It is good for me to draw near to God

It is good for me to draw near to God.1

Lord, I have loved the habitation of thy house, and the place where thine honour dwelleth.2 A day in thy courts is better than a thousand. I had rather be a door-keeper in the house of my God, than to dwell in the tents of wickedness.3 Blessed is the man whom thou choosest, and causest to approach unto thee, that he may dwell in thy courts: we shall be satisfied with the goodness of thy house, even of thy holy temple.4

The Lord is good unto them that wait for him, to the soul that seeketh him.5 Therefore will the Lord wait that he may be gracious unto you, and therefore will he be exalted that he may have mercy upon you: for the Lord is a God of judgment: blessed are all they that wait for him.6

Having therefore, brethren, boldness to enter into the holiest by the blood of Jesus, by a new and living way, which he hath consecrated for us: … let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience.7


1Psa 73:28; 2Psa 26:8; 3Psa 84:10; 4Psa 65:4; 5Lam 3:25; 6Isa 30:18; 7Heb 10:19,20,22;

(From Bagster’s Daily Light – K.J.V.)

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Following Jesus

Readers of this blog may have been jarred to see the faces of some of the greatest monsters of the 20th century in the previous entry. The pictures remind us that evil exists. Historically, other religions have accepted evil as something the gods are powerless or unwilling to oppose, something in which the gods themselves may participate. Some have even denied that evil exists, claiming it is just an illusion. Judaism and Christianity are committed to the idea that God is all-powerful and all-loving, so for Jews and Christians the existence of evil is a problem asking for explanation. The Bible does not give us a full answer to the problem. The Book of Genesis suggests that some evil arises from the fact that people (and heavenly beings) are free to obey or disobey God. The Book of Job goes further and explores the fact that bad things happen even to people who obey God. Job complains bitterly but he continues to serve God. At the end of the book, God speaks. He offers no philosophical explanation of evil but he urges Job to trust that, given the way the world has been set up (which Job cannot possibly understand), God is working in the right way.

In the New Testament, we see the perfect man, Jesus, also confronted with evil. Rather than combating it with bolts of lightning or troops of angels, he bows to the evil and lets it defeat him, even to the point of dying in agony following a false charge of blasphemy. But then he rose from the dead and told his followers that he had defeated evil and that even death could not separate them from eternal life with God. We still struggle in how to explain evil in the world, but we know that the all-powerful and all-loving God has subjected himself to evil and death to save us, out of love for us. This is a leader we can follow.

This day, September 21, we remember St. Matthew, one of the original 12 disciples of Jesus. He was working for the Roman occupying government as a tax-collector when Jesus called him, at which point he dropped his job and followed. He is traditionally thought to have written the Gospel that bears his name. May we all follow Jesus and learn from him.

As confusing as our current times may be, this is the ideal time to learn about Matthew as we are reading from his Gospel every Sunday. The message or sermon is also taken from this Gospel. Join us in learning more, not only about Matthew, but the teacher and Lord that Matthew followed. To accommodate covid precautions we are practicing socially distant worship and fellowship. Masks are provided when you enter the building. We have a drive through communion from 9:00 am until 9:30 am for those not yet ready to enter a church. Our regular worship service, inside the church, starts at 10:00 a.m. We look forward to meeting you!

St. Matthew, Apostle
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The God of All Grace

The God of all grace.1

I will proclaim the name of the Lord before thee; and will be gracious to whom I will be gracious.2 He is gracious unto him, and saith, Deliver him from going down to the pit: I have found a ransom.3 Being justified freely by his grace, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus: whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare his right-eousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God.4 Grace and truth came by Jesus Christ.5

By grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God.6 Grace, mercy, and peace, from God our Father and Jesus Christ our Lord.7 Unto every one of us is given grace according to the measure of the gift of Christ.8 As every man hath received the gift, even so minister the same one to another, as good stewards of the manifold grace of God.9 He giveth more grace.10

Grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. To him be glory both now and for ever.11


11Pe 5:10; 2Exo 33:19; 3Job 33:24; 4Rom 3:24,25; 5Joh 1:17; 6Eph 2:8; 71Ti 1:2; 8Eph 4:7; 91Pe 4:10; 10Jam 4:6; 112Pe 3:18;

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Join us to explore Grace, Truth and the Generosity of God. New service times:

Drive through Eucharist 9:00 a.m. until 9:30 a.m. (drive up to the red door and stay in your vehicle)

Mass inside with music 10:00 a.m. (mask’s required, bring a BCP2019, if you have one)

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Remember!

A recent survey indicates that a majority of young people do not know about, or actively doubt, the reality of the Holocaust. This hideous crime, which was worldwide knowledge only 75 years ago, has been forgotten by many. Probably the greater evils of Stalin and Mao are even less well known.

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Hitler, Stain, Mao

As a consequence, many young people support policies that would give more power to government to achieve favored ends, but their ignorance of history does not allow them to weigh potential benefits against the millions who died in just the last 100 years under regimes that exercised dictatorial power. It is the job of parents and schools to communicate this important knowledge but the survey shows that we do not always succeed.

Even more worrying is another recent survey indicating that many Christians do not understand the basic truth that we are saved from sin, evil and death not by our own merits but by the free gift of God, through the life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. As a consequence, many believe that if they live pretty good lives then God will surely favor them. This weak theology evaporates in the face of distraction and hardship. It is the job of organized religion to preserve and communicate this important knowledge but the survey shows that we do not always succeed.

At Saint Barnabas we are not perfect, but we strive to teach Christian truth, the Good News of Jesus Christ. Jesus lived 2000 years ago, but we all need to remember that his life, death and resurrection are the most important events in the history of the world. Do you want to know why? Please join us and see how your life can become more peaceful through deeper knowledge of God.

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There are two ways that you can explore these truths on Sunday. At 9:00 a.m. until 9:30 a.m. we have drive through Eucharist at the red doors in the front of the church. At 10:00 a.m. we have worship inside the church. Masks and social distancing are required while inside the church. Join us in either service to grow in your understanding of eternal truths.

Blessings,

The members of St. Barnabas

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Smoke

On Tuesday, residents of Puget Sound woke to the smell of smoke and a red sun rising. It was caused by wildfires in Central and Eastern Washington. This morning the region woke to a smokey haze from the smoke of fires from Oregon.

Fires are part of the natural order. Plants grow, they dry out in summer, and eventually they catch fire. We can control fires to some extent, but we can’t eliminate them.

Pray for those whose lives and property are in danger and for those helping to contain the fires. Remember also in your prayers those who have been shut in for weeks because of the Covid-19 quarantine. Christians have always led in serving those afflicted by natural disasters and diseases. Here is another opportunity.

We have resumed our services inside the church after observing drive through communion since March 22, 2020. Our schedule is as follows:

Drive through communion – 9:00 am to 9:30 am Sunday mornings.

No mask required

Indoor communion, service with music – 10:00 am, masks and social

distancing required. Bring your BCP

2019 if you have one.

May all be blessed,

Fr. Harley+

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Whatever the day may bring…

August 29, 2020 – Saturday Morning

Whoso trusteth in the Lord, happy is he.1

Abrahaml staggered not at the promise of God through unbelief; but was strong in faith, giving glory to God; and being fully persuaded that, what he had promised, he was able also to perform.2 The children of Judah prevailed, because they relied upon the Lord God of their fathers.3

God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. Therefore will not we fear, though the earth be removed, and though the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea.4 It is better to trust in the Lord than to put confidence in man. It is better to trust in the Lord than to put confidence in princes.5 The steps of a good man are ordered by the Lord: and he delighteth in his way. Though he fall, he shall not be utterly cast down: for the Lord upholdeth him with his hand.6

O taste and see that the Lord is good: blessed is the man that trusteth in him. O fear the Lord, ye his saints: for there is no want to them that fear him.7

1Pro 16:20; 2Rom 4:20,21; 32Ch 13:18; 4Psa 46:1,2; 5Psa 118:8,9; 6Psa 37:23,24; 7Psa 34:8,9;

(From Bagster’s Daily Light KJV)

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