Happy Epiphany

The twelve days of Christmas concluded on January 5. Now begins the season of Epiphany (from a Greek word that means “show forth” or “reveal”). This season celebrates the fact that Jesus was revealed to the world as God with us. Three events are highlighted. First, the visit of the Magi shows that Jesus was recognized even by distant wise men. Second, Jesus’ baptism includes God’s voice announcing to the world that Jesus was God’s son. Third, Jesus’ transformation of water to wine revealed his miraculous powers. You will hear about these events in the coming weeks. Come and join us!

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Merry Christmas!

The Christian celebration of Christmas begins on December 25 and runs for twelve days (twelve days of Christmas, there is a song in that). Throughout this festival, we remember with awe and wonder the fact that God, who created the universe, became human to save us from our sins.

Want to hear more about this story? On Saturday December 31 (New Year’s Eve) we will gather at 2:00 pm for lessons and carols that tell the story of God’s mercy for all, culminating in Jesus coming to be with us. We will have hors d’oeuvres type foods afterwards.

On Sunday January 1, we will celebrate Jesus’ resurrection (as we do every Sunday) at 10:00 am. Following that service, there will be the final installment of our class about the Hebrew prophets. The focus will be on prophets who were active after the people of Israel returned to the Holy Land after their captivity in Babylon.

Everyone is welcome to join for both of these events!

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Christmas Eve & Christmas Day

We are celebrating Christmas at two services and hoping you can join us at one or both!

Christmas Eve: Saturday December 24, 2022 at 7:00 pm.

Christmas Eve will be a candlelight service and our Christmas choir will sing. Enjoy the sights and sounds of Christmas as we celebrate the newborn King!

Christmas Day: Sunday December 25, 2022 at 10:00 am.

For to us a child is born, to us a son is given; and the government shall be upon his shoulder, and his name shall be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.
Of the increase of his government and of peace there will be no end, on the throne of David and over his kingdom, to establish it and to uphold it with justice and with righteousness from this time forth and forevermore. The zeal of the LORD of hosts will do this. (Isaiah 9:6-7 ESV)

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Third Sunday in Advent – Rose Sunday

Third Sunday in Advent – The season of Advent continues. If you wish to join the Christmas choir, you are welcome to arrive at 9:00 am on Sunday for practice.

The third Sunday of Advent is traditionally called Gaudete Sunday, Gaudete being a Latin word meaning to rejoice. The Bible readings will emphasize the joy we have in the approaching festival of Jesus’ birth, echoing the joy Mary felt as the mother of Jesus and providing refreshment in the otherwise rather somber and penitential season of Advent.

Following the 10:00 am service on Sunday the class on the biblical prophets continues. This week we will look at prophets who experienced the time of Exile, following the destruction of Jerusalem by the Babylonians. All are welcome.

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Advent 2022

The first Sunday in Advent for the start of the Christian year is Sunday November 27, 2022. Here are some of the activities planned:

Our seasonal choir meets for a practice session at 9:00 am.

The pre-service music begins at 9:50 am with the Mass starting at 10:00 am.

After the service, during coffee hour, we begin a new Christian Education series:

Advent Class:  Prophets in Israel

Some of the most puzzling parts of the Old Testament are the books of the prophets.  Isaiah and Jeremiah may be familiar, but what about Amos, Hosea, Micah, and Nahum? The books of the prophets spoke to the people of Israel in a particular historical context. They were treasured and quoted in the New Testament. The Advent class this year will explore the prophets, what they meant to their times and what they mean to us. The class will meet during the coffee hour period after the 10:00 service, starting on November 27. Join us for this study, refreshments will be served.

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Thanksgiving Day Service – Nov. 24, 2022

Join us for a service of Thanksgiving on the morning of Thursday November 24, 2022 at 10:00 am. There will be a selection of pre-service hymns starting at 9:50 am. Take time from a busy National Day for prayer, music, the Eucharist and an expression of gratitude.


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Veterans Day – November 11, 2022

We will remember…

From In Flanders Fields by John McCrae (W.E. Rudge, New York, 1921)

A grateful nation remembers the sacrafice of the fallen, those who served and those who serve today.

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Nov. 1 Feast of All Saints Day

On Tuesday November 1, 2022 there will be two Masses celebrating the Feast of of All Saints.

We celebrate at two services on that day at Noon and 7:00pm.

All are welcome to join in the celebration.

Blessings,

Fr. Harley+

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Faith, Hope and Love

Paul of Tarsus (Saint Paul), an early Christian leader, wrote letters giving advice and encouragement to young churches. One was sent to the church in Corinth, a Greek port city. You may have heard part of this letter quoted at a wedding: “Now these remain, faith, hope, and love, but the greatest of these is love.” When you are lonely or anxious or depressed, think about these words.

Faith is trust in something you cannot prove. Everyone has faith in lots of things. We have faith that our car will not fall apart as we drive on the freeway, we have faith that our doctor is well trained and skillful, we may even have faith that the Mariners will win the playoffs this year. Some kinds of faith are indispensable. Science would be impossible without faith that our observations are meaningful and that the laws of nature do not change. Sometimes our faith can let us down, as the case of the Mariners shows (and sometimes cars do fall apart). Paul would say that Christians have faith in something that will never let us down, the all-powerful and loving God who made the universe and wants us to live with him forever. God’s purposes are revealed most clearly in the life of Jesus, who is some mysterious way was both human and God. The more we learn about Jesus the more we understand what we are to have faith in.

Hope, like faith, involves an attitude about something we cannot prove, but it adds a positive spin: hope tells us that everything will end up all right. This may seem an unrealistic expectation in a world filled with war, disease, and cruelty. Paul knew about these things. In his missionary career he was falsely accused, beaten, and imprisoned, and in the end he was executed. Similar fates awaited other early church leaders. Why then would Paul tell us to be hopeful? He knew that Jesus also suffered and was crucified, and yet Jesus said, “In this world you will have trouble, but take heart! I have overcome the world.” John 16:33. This is not only an assurance of eternal life after death, it is an assurance that in this life, despite its troubles, we can know God and see how the light of God’s love shines even into our darkest times.

Love (or “charity” in some older translations) needs explanation. It translates the Greek word agape (ah-gah-pay) and refers not to exclusive romantic love (despite the use of this passage at many weddings) or donating to worthy causes (which is what the term “charity” has come to mean) but rather to a bond where you work for their welfare of another without expecting anything in return. Jesus illustrated this kind of love in stories like that of the Good Samaritan, where religious officials passed by an injured man but a social outcast took the time to care for him. In the story of the Prodigal Son, the father welcomed his son home with rejoicing, even though the son had wasted half of the family property. This is the kind of love Christians are to have for one another and, mysteriously, the kind of love God wants to have with us. That is why “the greatest of these is love.”

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Let us pray for your pet

We will recognize the feast of St. Francis on Sunday October 2, 2022. We will offer pet blessings after the Sunday service at Noon. Rain or shine, meet us at the red doors. All pets and creatures are welcome!

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