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The Rev. Maryalice Sullivan, Priest-
The Rev. James Kelliher, Deacon
Holy Eucharist @ 10:00 am Sunday
Morning Prayer @ 8:30 am Friday
We welcome you in the name of God. Enter St. Peter’s & St. Andrew’s not as a stranger, but as a guest of God. If this is your first visit here, we are honored and blessed to worship with you. We pray that you will feel welcome and that you receive spiritually for this worship time. We hope you return to worship with us again. We invite you to join us for coffee hour following the service.
St. Peter’s & St. Andrew’s weekly E-pistle: August 19, 2018
This past week we were blessed to be able to go to Vermont and enjoy our small cabin in the woods for a couple of days. Normally the best part of going to the cabin is being able to sit and listen to the quiet babble of the brook. It is soothing and able to lull you to sleep and definitely lowers blood pressure. Not so this time, it was a raging stream, making enough noise to keep one awake and alert. The brook by this time of year is usually nothing more then bits of water passing over the rocks, great for putting your feet into on hot days. It is always cold and just the water passing over your feet can cool your entire body. The rain had come. It was a deluge of water dumping out of the sky and filled this little stream to nearly overflowing. It rushes down the mountain and passes in front of our cottage and then flows into small river. Hurricane Irene filled this brook so much that three of our neighbors lost their houses and their land. The power of the water destroyed what was and left in its wake, large rocks and a very different landscape.
The raging brook that flowed six or eight feet in front of the cabin this past trip was a reminder of how much we have to be thankful for. By the time we left and with the help of the sun the brook had slowed sufficiently and the rush of the water had once again become a lullaby rather then a song of thunder. We have the cabin because it was a gift from John’s parents. It is filled with memories and stories and if one day the water claims this cabin too, it will never claim our stories and memories. They are ours. They are part of who we are and have formed and shaped us, our children, our grandchildren and now our great children; so much to be thankful for! It is so easy to forget that all we have is gift and we are simply stewards of the gifts.
All things come from you O God and you have blessed us with much. Thank you!
We have received a gift of new hymnals from the Prayer Book Society. Thirty copies each of “Lift Every Voice and Sing” and “Wonder Love and Praise”. We are blessed by this very generous gift and very thankful for for the support of the Prayer Book Society and our Bishop.
- The rectory kitchen is not only gutted, it is fairly clean of debris and ready for a new lease on life. -Thank you Art
- We had a slight set back with the rectory roof with a leak in one of the valleys, it has been fixed-Thank you John
- Office between the rectory and the church is almost done, please take a look at it. -Thank you Alisa
- More furniture has been removed from the basement of the parish hall.- Thank you Art
- Two dehumidifiers have been purchased, one for the basement of the parsish hall and one for the rectory basement, -Thank you Art
Now to get them in place and get them working (all things are a process and it takes time and many hands to make things happen-help is Always welcomed
- A new door has been placed in the bathroom, no more curtain -Thank you Dean and John
- Please check out the lighting around the Altar space-new LED bulbs have brightened our sanctuary-Thank you Brad and Art
We need to eventually replace all of the bulbs in the parish hall and the church with LED this will reduce our electric bill-maybe this is something you could help with
- the modem in the office is being replaced- the modem that we have is old, actually ancient for modems and therefore not able to keep our wifi secure and as up to date as it should be.
There is much left to do, almost overwhelming, but if we continue to slowly choose each project it will all be done before we know it. Just a reminder that living in construction and change, and there is a lot of change, is difficult, but also wonderful. Let us together keep praying for each other and for God to give us a vision of where we are being led.
August 4, 2018
As many of you know last week I preached about how we as a congregation might be the living Gospel. How we might be Chrirst’s hands and heart to those who are in need in the small village of Magila in the Diocese of Tanga in Tanzania. Through your generosity and the generosity of several other parishes so far more then a $1,000 has been raised and sent to Holy Cross School to help with science equipment for the classrooms. Please see the picture and the thank you note below and hear from my heart a very large thank you indeed.
Dear Partners in Ministry
On Sunday we raised $1,160 to purchase lab supplies and renovate the computers and the computer room at the Hegongo Anglican High School in the Diocese of Tanga, Tanzania.
The money has been sent to the school and will arrive just in time for the schools to buy the supplies and spif up the computers for Parent's Day which is this Saturday.
Ellie and Eric and the teachers promise to send us pictures. The headmaster and the teachers are so excited that they can purchase what they need that they are beside themselves. I will send along the pictures as soon as I get them.
Thank you Thank you Thank you.
The Rev. Rebecca Blair
Rector of St. Andrew's Church
New Bedford, MA
Update: On building progress:
Rectory roof- done
Parish Hall roof- done
Dormer roof - done
Dormer- rotting shingles and wood- replaced, repaired and painted
We have one estimate on painting the rectory- more estimates will be gathered this week
We have one estimate on sanding the floors-more to be gathered
This week we will be gathering estimates on repairing and painting of the parish Hall
What can you do:
We need to gather a group of people to demolition the kitchen to make it ready for new cabinets etc.
We need help removing clutter from downstairs in the parish hall
We need help removing old and not needed information from the file cabinets in parish office
We need everyone’s help in decluttering and making sure we stay decluttered
We will need help in removing everything from the parish office to repaint and repair that room- this will be parish effort
There is more, because there is alway more, as you know when you start any projects there is always the unexpected, the unknown. So with some healthy fear let us move forward.
All of this is very good, but it is also very disruptive of how we live our lives together. How we have always done things previously may just not work going forward, so remember to love, remember to laugh and most of all remember to pray. This time, although very exciting and good, will be hard because all this change is hard, no matter how good it is, it is just plain difficult. We do have choices as we move through this time. We can ask God to give us eyes of generosity towards each other and thanksgivings for what is being given or we can choose to be angry because things are not the way they have always been.
When I was a child I was taught the following the verse from Deuteronomy and it has helped me so much to get through many things in my own life, I hope it will help us as we move through this time together.
“God has set before you blessings and curses
Life and death
Choose Life” - May God give us the eyes and the wisdom to choose life.
St. Peter’s & St. Andrew’s - weekly e-pistle, July 29, 2018
There are numerous things happening right this moment at St. Peter’s and St. Andrew’s. We have stepped into the beginning phase of re-newing and restoring our buildings. Each thing we do is a kind of prayer. We have been given much. We have a beautiful church, parish hall and rectory along with lovely grounds. We are located in a lovely neighborhood where most days it is quiet except for the wonderful sound of the church bells and the delightful sound of the music coming from the ice cream truck. Our lovely brick walk and quiet circle are invitations to all who pass by to come and pray, to sit awhile and just enjoy the beauty of the space. My own thoughts wander to what is God up to at this moment? What kind of seeds have already been planted and are now beginning to poke through the ground of our parish longing to be watered and nurtured. It will take time and listening on our part to hear God’s voice, to see ourselves as God’s hands, and heart and face to each other and to the community and exactly what that means for us.
Pray with me that as each new shingle that was placed on our roofs, a new awareness of God’s loving care for us may materialize in our hearts. As each space is restored and repaired we do not only see the physical work that is being done, but understand the out pouring of God’s holy grace into our space and into each of us. Amazing things are happening. All our work is prayer, even the emptying of file cabinet draws with documents from long ago, the removing of old furniture no longer useful, the cleaning of closets and shelves. We are the stewards. We are co-creating with God. We really do have to become empty so that we may be full again, not full of unwanted and unneeded stuff, but full of grace, joy, love and peace. For our neighborhood we need to be the beating heart of Christ.
Among the things that God is doing here is the gift of sign language. We are blessed to have Brad and Jimmy with us each Sunday. Brad lovely translates our service into sign language. I hope that we all may be able to learn a bit of sign language. It is such a beautiful expression of our language and such a privelege for us to have this be part of who we are. Prehaps you know someone who could benefit from this gift, invite them. I am suggesting that we might all learn the “Holy, Holy, Holy.” We just need to watch Brad and follow his lead.
What is next:
Maybe reading a book together as a parish
Providing Halloween for the community with the help of Shekinah.
Prayer shawl ministry
Orginizing for our Christmas Fair
Cleaning of closets and all spaces-pick a closet or cupboard - it can actually be fun
Cleaning and clearing of the back yard of the rectory-stop by and give an hour,
Keeping our yard neat and tidy-come pull some weeds, mow the lawn
Weekly E-pestle for July 22nd, Feast of St. Mary Magdalene
I am finding that I am holding the hearts of the parents and the children that were separated at the border in my heart and my soul. They are in my prayers and my thoughts. I long for them to be reunited and know for some of them it will never happen. I also know that God’s heart is hurting to see so much pain. So I offer you this prayer.
A Prayer: For the Children and Parents
Listen, listen with the ears of your heart,
Hear the voices of the children,
Who cry in the night and cower during the day,
Longing for their mothers and fathers.
Some in far away places,
Places that are strange and different,
Without the comforts of home.
Things familiar gone from their sight.
Surrounded by strangers,
Some caring, some not,
Longing for the hands of their parents,
To hold their hands.
Longing to hear their voice,
To listen to family stories,
To feel secure, to hold their favorite cuddly toy,
To sleep in their own bed.
Childhood lost, simple things gone,
Replaced by nightmares and buckets of tears,
Each and every tear caught by our God,
Who hovers over them, filling them with breath.
A loving God full of compassion,
Loving each child and each parent with the totality of God-self,
Wrapping them in all that is good and holy,
And praying for them and with them that they may once again be family.
Our Buildings and Grounds: Just a glimpse!
There is much to be done but we are moving forward
Rectory Roof - done
Parish House Roof-done
Dormer repairs-to be finished today
New seamless Gutter along the side of the parish house-done
The valve on the boiler is fixed
What is next:
Meeting with construction company to design the replacement of the rectory kitchen
Gathering bids for painting inside of the rectory
Gathering bids to repair and paint inside of parish house
Priest office to be painted in August
Gathering Bids for sanding of the floors in the rectory
On-going work to the back yard of the rectory
Sanctuary painting will be scheduled for fall
This is an exciting time in the life of this parish. The prayers of many through out the years are gathered here and giving us roots for what the future will bring.
An Invitation from Presiding Bishop Michael B. Curry to Practice the Way of Love
I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God. – Ephesians 3:17-19
In the first century Jesus of Nazareth inspired a movement. A community of people whose lives were centered on Jesus Christ and committed to living the way of God’s unconditional, unselfish, sacrificial, and redemptive love. Before they were called “church” or “Christian,” this Jesus Movement was simply called “the way.”
Today I believe our vocation is to live as the Episcopal branch of the Jesus Movement. But how can we together grow more deeply with Jesus Christ at the center of our lives, so we can bear witness to his way of love in and for the world?
The deep roots of our Christian tradition may offer just such a path. For centuries, monastic communities have shaped their lives around rhythms and disciplines for following Jesus together. Such a pattern is known as a “Rule of Life.” The framework you now hold – The Way of Love: Practices for Jesus-Centered Life – outlines a Rule for the Episcopal branch of the Jesus Movement.
It is designed to be spare and spacious, so that individuals, ministry groups, congregations, and networks can flesh it out in unique ways and build a church-wide treasure trove of stories and resources. There is no specific order you need to follow. If you already keep a Rule or spiritual disciplines, you might reflect and discover how that path intersects with this one. By entering into reflection, discernment and commitment around the practices of Turn - Learn - Pray - Worship - Bless - Go - Rest, I pray we will grow as communities following the loving, liberating, life-giving way of Jesus. His way has the power to change each of our lives and to change this world.
Your brother in the Way of Jesus,
The Most Reverend Michael B. Curry, Primate and Presiding Bishop of the Episcopal Church
From the Diocese
The Rhode Island deputies and I are back home from General Convention, reflecting on days of hard work on the part of thousand of Episcopalians. Highlights included a unified response in support of the immigrant children and their parents who were separated at the border. Prayer Book revision garnered considerable interest (see article below). The presiding bishop's call to a commitment to a common rule of life, the Way of Love, is something many of us will be talking about and working on in the coming months. And in Rhode Island, we are launching another river pilgrimage in the fall (article below) which is one way we can deepen our spiritual lives.
I've attended many General Conventions over the years. This one was marked by the willingness of people to work to find compromises. For the most part, everyone sought to find out how to hold together rather than battling each other from divergent positions. I think its because the younger generations are beginning to assume leadership roles and they have a different approach than the older generations. I see that as hopeful for the future of the church.
This is the last of three special editions of the newsletter during General Convention. Please share with others and encourage them to sign up for these newsletters at www.episcopalri.org/news.
Weekly E-pistle, July 15, 2018
Last week I happen to arrive at church a bit earlier then usual on Friday morning. I expected to be alone but instead I met a beautiful three year old boy and his grandmother. They live just down the street from the church. Neither of them spoke a word of English, yet we had fun, playing ball or rather playing chase the ball. The church doors were open and both of them wanted to peak inside. The child was curious, the grandmother was just happy to sit in the pew and spend some quiet time with God. Our visit ended with the sharing of a few cookies and lots of smiles. Truly a blessed way to start any day. It did make me think that we need to have some material about the church and the parish that are in Spanish. We have now ordered the small book of prayers, “Day by Day” in Spanish, so that is a start. Friday mornings have become so special. Whenever possible Jim and I share Morning Prayer or maybe a simple Eucharist on the stone benches outside the church, I am wondering who we might meet this week.
God of goodness and delight
Always ready to fill our hearts with all good things
In this world where there is so much darkness
Give us the grace to turn towards the light.
Help us to have eyes to see the simple things
Quiet our minds so we can take them in,
Give us courage to be open
To love and be loved.
Greetings from National Convention
Greetings from Austin
The Rhode Island deputies and I are now in the middle of the General Convention, wading our way through the budget and innumerable resolutions! And we have had amazing opportunities to bear witness to God's love.
Yesterday the Bishops Against Gun Violence, of which I'm a member, organized a gathering at a local park where an Episcopal father whose daughter was killed at the Parkland Florida school gave a powerful witness to how he found God in the midst of that awful experience.
Bishop Curry was joined by over a thousand Episcopalians who traveled to a nearby immigration detention center in a public witness to the recent policies that separated families. "We do not come in hatred, we do not come in bigotry, we do not come to put anybody down, we come to lift everybody up. We come in love, we come in love because we follow Jesus and Jesus taught us love,” said Presiding Bishop Michael Curry, in his sermon during the noontime Prayer of Vision, Witness and Justice held in sight of the Hutto Detention Facility.
Bishop Curry and our own Patrick Greene, rector of St. Matthew's and St. Mark's, Barrington, were featured on a Fox News video (after the ad).
This is the second of three special editions of the newsletter during General Convention to help you stay informed. The message from the Presiding Bishop (below) is especially important. Please share with others and encourage them to sign up for these newsletters at www.episcopalri.org/news.
Presiding Bishop urges us to embrace 'Way of Love' for spiritual growth
[Episcopal News Service – Austin, Texas] The opening Eucharist of the 79th General Convention of the Episcopal Church on July 5 included lively music in many styles, communion for thousands of people and a sermon by Presiding Bishop Michael Curry calling on members of the Episcopal Church to embrace spiritual practices that can help lead them to a Jesus-centered life.
Called the “Way of Love,” the seven practices provide a Rule of Life that all Episcopalians are encouraged to adopt.
Turn: Pause, listen and choose to follow Jesus.
Learn: Reflect daily on scripture, especially the life and teachings of Jesus.
Pray: Spend time with God in prayer every day.
Worship: Gather in community for worship every week.
Bless: Share one’s faith and find ways to serve other people.
Go: Move beyond one’s comfort to witness to the love of God with words and actions.
Rest: Dedicate time for restoration and wholeness.
The first of many projects:
The picture is the new tiles for our roofs! The first of many projects that will be happening throughout the summer and into the fall. The parish house, the rectory and the parish office will soon have new roofs and then no more leaks. We will work on the garden area behind the rectory this Saturday and probably many other Saturdays to come. Everyone is welcome, we plan on beginning at 10:00am, bring your enthusiam and joy and come. More clean up to come in our upstairs area above the parish hall and in the downstairs. Plenty of things to let go of and clear out space for new adventures. What new adventures, well those that the Holy Spirit will stir deep in our hearts as we open ourselves to respond to our Baptismal promises. We are afterall called to be the heart and hands of Christ to all that we meet. The heart and hands of love to each other and to the neighborhood and to the world beyond. We are called to be co-creators with our God wheather we are painting, cleaning, creating, imagining, dreaming, praying, washing dishes or scrubbing the kitchen floor.
We have much painting to do, painting will be happening in the parish hall from the money we received from our insurance claim. The parish office between the rectory and the church will soon be painted and there there is a whole rectory that needs painting, And as you know we received all the money for the paint for the santuary which we will paint this fall. So what else, well I am sure there is more but this is enough for now.
Come and be part of this journey, restoring our buildings, listening for the call of new ministries and catching the fire of the Holy Spirit!
Happy Birthday Elsie!
100 years young!
It is a privilege to be able to celebrate Elsie’s 100th birthday with her and thank her for sharing her birthday with the congregation. This is most certainly a precious moment in her life. This parish has been of Elsie’s life and she part of its life for ten decades. This is where she was baptized on Easter Eve in 1919 and this is where she has come to pray for all of her life. If the walls of this church could talk the stories they could tell. They would tell stories of Elsie setting the Altar, cleaning the pews, laughing with her good friend June and so many others; fixing meals for those in need and simply loving all who come through the doors.
Elsie may God continue to be your light,
As you are our light,
May each day be blessed and full of grace,
May you continue to read and enjoy the simple pleasures of life
And be surrounded by the love of Christ and this your family. Amen.