Saturday, June 25, 2011
To all our volunteers, teachers, helpers and leaders - Martha, Tabitha, Mary Vay, Gayle, Kay, Brenda, Jean, Bill, Karen, Karen, Miles, Grace Anne, Annie, Abby, Josey, Jake, Jeanne, Ken, Alan, and Sara - I give you a hearty, "WELL DONE AND THANKS!" And to my wife, Samantha, I must give a special thank you for organizing and running a fantastic VBS week. The decorations are still up in the Parish Hall, and I hope that everyone will come by and see the pandas, the posters and our new "Old Rugged Cross" which was lovingly hand crafted by Frank and Peggy Ragland from antique wood donated by Barry and Connie Rambin. Also, a special thanks to Sims Brown for cleaning the carpet so quickly and so well.
To the parents and grandparents of our attendees, I say thank you for sharing your children and grandchildren with us over the past five days. We have all be blessed by our time together, and we are all looking forward to doing it again next year.
Monday, June 13, 2011
Come early, eat often!
Call Fr. Michael or Samantha to get more details.
Tuesday, June 7, 2011
St. George's is located at 1959 Airline Drive in Bossier City, Louisiana.
Jaime asked me to extend this invitation to all the folks at Christ Memorial, and I think it would be great if we could show up in force to support him in his new calling as Rector of St. George's.
Monday, June 6, 2011
Thursday, May 26, 2011
Thursday, May 19, 2011
Wednesday, May 18, 2011
Monday, May 9, 2011
God is very good!
Wednesday, May 4, 2011
We are now accepting registrations for children from age 4 up through 5th grade. If you are interested, please contact the church office at 318 872-1144 or click on the panda and fill out a registration at our VBS website.
We are also looking for adult and teenaged volunteers to help with setup, VBS activities and clean up. If you would like more information about volunteering, please contact Samantha Millard at 318 872-1237.
There is no charge to attend VBS, so bring your children, grandchildren, neighbors and their children to a great week of learning, playing and singing about God's love.
Friday, April 29, 2011
Wednesday, April 13, 2011
Tuesday, March 15, 2011
Know therefore, that the LORD your God is not giving you this good land to possess because of your righteousness; for you are a stubborn people. Dt 9: 6This, Dear Reader, is a straight-forward admonition from God, through Moses, to the Hebrew people. Do not think that I am giving you this land, the land which I promised to your forefather Abraham, because you have somehow earned it. YOU HAVEN'T! Don't think that you are somehow entitled to this land because of all the great things you have done or the excellent way that you have kept my laws. YOU HAVEN'T!
God is saying to His People that despite the way they have acted; despite the things that they have done, and left undone; despite their failures to uphold God's commandments and laws; He is delivering them into the land which He had promised to them. He is giving them a home. He is providing for them. He is saving them from the wilderness.
God continues to do that for us everyday of our lives, through Jesus Christ. We did nothing to deserve Jesus' ministry and teaching. We did nothing to rate His love. We, in fact, did everything possible to earn His everlasting condemnation. Yet, God is a just and loving God, and in Jesus He proves it to us in the most magnificent way.
Jesus Christ died on the cross because that was the sacrifice necessary to wash His stubborn people clean of their sin and wickedness. By His death, we no longer fear the icy grip of the grave. We no longer must labor under the weight of sin or be separated from Our Father by anything or anyone. In Christ, God again tells us that we, stubborn as we are, are worth saving.
Remember the Anglican Axiom: "All may; none must; some should!"
See you tomorrow night.
Wednesday, March 9, 2011
Now, we turn our attention to the observance of a holy Lent. Mass with Imposition of Ashes will be offered today at Noon and at 7 PM. If you cannot come to church today, please give me a call, and I will either bring the ashes to you, or come and visit tomorrow with Communion and a word about this Lenten season.
I invite you, therefore, in the name of the Church, to the observance of a holy Lent, by self-examination and repentance; by prayer, fasting, and self-denial; and by reading and meditating on God's holy Word. BCP pg. 265Fr. Michael+
Tuesday, March 8, 2011
Ash Wednesday is tomorrow (and that is a traditional day of fasting), and we will have Mass with Imposition of Ashes at Noon and 7 PM.
Lent is a time of penitential preparation in anticipation of Easter. Now is the time to decide on what you will give up and what you will take on during this season. Many choose to give up a type of food or an activity during Lent, and that is a great way to refocus our attention on God. But it is also very important to take on something that will bring us closer to Him. Maybe that is a daily reading of Scripture. Maybe it is reading a book by C.S. Lewis or G.K. Chesterton or St. Augustine or N.T. Wright. Personally, I am going to sit down with C.S. Lewis' Mere Christianity.
Lent is also a time of reflection, examination and repentance. We take this opportunity to consider and to confess all that which has separated us from the God and turn away from those things, setting ourselves, with God's unbounded Grace and Love, on a new path towards Him.
I am available to hear Confessions, by appointment. Please call me at 318-840-9196.
Friday, March 4, 2011
My numbers are: 840-9196 (cell)
872-1144 (church office)
My scheduled office hours during the week are:
Friday: By appointment
I am setting aside on my schedule Monday, Tuesday and Thursday afternoons to make scheduled pastoral visits to parishioners at home or in hospital. Additionally, I am available on Friday by appointment.
If you, or someone you know needs a visit or to have Communion brought to them at home, please let me know so I can schedule a recurring visitation schedule with them.
Please also know that in the case of an emergency, I am available 24 hours a day 7 days a week. My door is always open and my cell phone is always on.
Monday, February 28, 2011
Thursday, February 24, 2011
During the discussion of the BCP last week, the class requested if it would be possible to celebrate Holy Eucharist according to the 1928 Prayer Book, a liturgy which some in the group remembered fondly and which others had never experienced. After obtaining permission from Bishop MacPherson, last night, I celebrated the Mass according the '28 "Order for The Administration of the Lord's Supper or Holy Communion". The chapel was nearly full, and during a discussion of the service during dinner, it was decided, again unanimously, that I would request permission from the Bishop to continue to use the '28 liturgy for our Wednesday night Eucharist. Happily, the Bishop responded to me this morning granting me permission to do just that.
Therefore, beginning next Wednesday and for each Wednesday during Lent, we will worship according to the 1928 prayer book. Because of the changes in the lectionary over the years, I will be using the readings from the Lesser Feasts and Fasts, but the service itself will be done according to the rubrics in the '28 book.
I also take this opportunity to remind and invite everyone to our Wednesday night program during Lent. Amy will continue to provide our meals for us, but in keeping with the penitential nature of Lent, we will be scaling back slightly by serving a selection of soups and bread each Wednesday night. We will also observe the Stations of the Cross each Wednesday following the Mass; therefore, the service will be held in the Church during Lent instead of in the Chapel.
For Bible Study during Lent, we will return to the Old Testament with a study of Exodus, the second book of the Pentateuch. I hope that this will be a rich opportunity to reflect on God's redemption of His Chosen People from the bonds of slavery in Egypt in the light of His redemption of the whole world through His Son, Jesus Christ.
O Almighty Lord, and everlasting God, vouchsafe, we beseech thee, to direct, sanctify, and govern, both our hearts and bodies, in the ways of thy laws, and in the works of thy commandments; that, through thy most mighty protection, both here and ever, we may be preserved in body and soul; through our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. Amen.Fr. Michael+
Wednesday, February 16, 2011
I look forward to seeing y'all there.
Monday, February 14, 2011
Now we just need to see if we can get grass to grow in front of the rectory again.
Wednesday, February 9, 2011
I will be celebrating the Mass at 6PM for anyone who wishes to attend, but there will be no dinner or Bible study tonight. We will resume next week with a discussion of the origins and use of the Book of Common Prayer.
Tuesday, February 8, 2011
Because of the possibility of inclement weather tomorrow, Gayle has decided to cancel choir tomorrow, and I concur. I will be watching the weather tonight and plan to make a decision about Wednesday Bible Study in the morning. I will post any news here and on Facebook.
Monday, February 7, 2011
The women met for their first class in a ten week study of the Book of Esther tonight. It was a good crowd, and an important decision was made by those gathered. Starting next week, the class will meet on Thursday night from 6-8PM in the Parish Hall. This change was made in the hope that more women would be able to come on Thursday rather than Monday. Workbooks are still available at the church office.
Sunday, February 6, 2011
This morning, I had the honor of baptizing Alison Camille LeBouef at Christ Memorial. We all got to share in this joyous moment with her family from Mansfield, Lafayette and Houston. We thank God for the improved weather and ask Him for safe travels for all those headed home.
We thank God for this Sacrament and for all his Grace and Love.
Thursday, February 3, 2011
Wednesday, February 2, 2011
We will be have our first team meeting on Tuesday, February 15 at 6:30PM in the Parlor. Anyone who is interested should come to this meeting so that we can make our plans for raising the necessary funds and working toward our departure in September.
If you have any questions about the trip or would like to discuss it prior to the meeting on the 15th, please call me, and I'll be happy to help.
Monday, January 24, 2011
But in those days, after that tribulation, the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light, and the stars will be falling from heaven, and the powers in the heavens will be shaken. And then they will see the Son of man coming in clouds with great power and glory. And then he will send out the angels, and gather his elect from the four winds, from the ends of the earth to the ends of heaven. (Mk 13: 24-27 RSV)Jesus spoke of the time when every knee will bow before the Lamb and all the brokenness of creation will be set right. This is the eschaton, the Second Coming. Part of what Jesus preaches refers to that promise, the promise when God will rule the world with pure justice and pure mercy and pure grace; setting all things right and in their proper place. We do not know the time of this conclusion of history; but we know that it is on the way.
When speaking of the "Kingdom of Heaven", however, Jesus tells us not only of a coming event that may or may not be distant in its arrival. Jesus also speaks of a present reality; the presence of God in the midst of His people. Jesus, the only begotten Son of God, is the Kingdom of Heaven.
The new proximity of the Kingdom of which Jesus speaks - the distinguishing feature of his message - is to be found in Jesus himself. Through Jesus' presence and action, God has here and now entered actively into history in a wholly new way. The reason why now is the fullness of time (Mk 1: 15), why now is in a unique sense the time of conversion and penance, as well as the time of joy, is that in Jesus it is God who draws near to us. In Jesus, God is now the one who acts and who rules as Lord - rules in a divine way, without worldly power, rules through the love that reaches 'to the end' (Jn 13: 1), to the Cross. John Cardinal Ratzinger, Jesus of NazarethWe live in a history that has been touched irrevocably by the physical presence of God. He chose to make himself one of us, fully man and fully God, so that we might not only look forward to the promise of life eternal with Him; but that we might share in a restored relationship with our Father right here and right now. Jesus points to the future, but he is not only about prophesy and promises. Through our faith in Christ, our actions guided by the Holy Ghost and our participation in the Body of Christ, the Church, we find that we are in the presence of the Kingdom even while we await its arrival at the end of time.
Thursday, January 20, 2011
There are times when those words apply to us today just as much as they did when Isaiah first spoke them. Can we honestly say that we hear what God speaks to us through Holy Scripture, or that we see Him in our neighbors as we should? Do we read His Word as we should, or do we seek to live out His Commandments as we ought? Do we turn to our Father every day when we rise and do we commit ourselves to conform ourselves to His Will?
The Book of Acts ends with Paul "preaching the Kingdom of God and teaching about the Lord Jesus Christ quite openly and unhindered." To be disciples of Jesus of Christ we must spend time learning and living the Word delivered to us through his Apostles to his Church. We must spend time with Christ in Holy Scripture. We must put into practice what we learn and make ours a Christian life well lived in love and service to God. In this, we find that we may show the way to others and may support others as they strive to live a life dedicated to the Word of God.
In other business last night, we decided that beginning next week, January 26, we will begin a study of the Church which I am calling Anglicanism 101. It is a refresher course in things Anglican and is meant to give folks on opportunity to learn or re-learn many basic principles and facts about our Church. The syllabus for this class looks something like this:
January 26: Liturgy - A tour of the Church with discussion of our tradition and liturgy
February 2: Sacraments - The seven Sacraments of the Church
February 9: The Book of Common Prayer - Cranmer's Legacy
February 16: The Seasons, Fasts and Feasts of the Church - What do all those colors mean?
February 23: The Episcopal Church of the United States of America - Why we are who we are
March 2: Wrapping up loose ends and general discussion
Lent begins with Ash Wednesday on March 9, so there will be no dinner or Bible Study that night. There will be Mass with the Imposition of Ashes in the Church at 7:00PM. Beginning on March 16, we will begin a study of Exodus which will run through the season of Lent. We will continue to have choir practice, Mass, dinner and Bible Study according to our normal schedule during Lent, but the meals will be very simple, consisting of soup and bread. Looking even further into the future, our study for the season of Easter will be "Jesus of Nazareth" by Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger (Pope Benedict XVI).
I would like to encourage everyone to come and join us on Wednesday night. Coming together to worship, to share a meal and to study the Word of God are important ways that we grow in our relationship with the Father and make ourselves disciples to our Savior Jesus Christ.
Everyone is welcome. Please, bring a friend.
Monday, January 17, 2011
It is not too early to start thinking about OCC for next year. One easy way to help is to keep a watchful eye when you go to the store. If you see plastic shoe boxes on sale, pick up a few. If you see toys or toiletries that we can put in the boxes, pick them up and stash them away. Make it a habit to pick up a little something here and there; and then when box packing time rolls around again, we'll be ready to make it happen.
I would also ask your prayers for all those who do so much to bring the Light of Christ to the nations of the Earth. Pray for those who have heard and received the Gift of Christ, that they may be strong and joyful in their faith. Pray for those who have yet to hear the Word, that God will touch them with His infinite Goodness and Mercy.
Friday, January 14, 2011
I ask your prayers for my son, Miles, who is on a bus with the Youth Group from St. Paul's, Shreveport. They are bound for Ashville, NC for Youthquake 2011. Accordong to his last message, he did not sleep last night. God help them all.
I also wanted to update you on my friends, Tom and Mathew, who are in Uganda right now. They arrived safely on Wednesday, but their bags went to Uzbekistan or some such place and should get to them in Hoima today. Please pray for those who are travelling and for those working in the mission field.
More to come.......
Monday, January 10, 2011
Tuesday, January 4, 2011
I post this because I think it is important to remember the work that is being done by missionaries around the world. In addition to these short term mission trips, there are folks who have dedicated their lives to teaching the Gospel and bringing the Love of Jesus Christ to all the people of the world, just as Christ instructed us to do. I have been on two mission trips, one to the D.R. and one to Peru, and both experiences effected me deeply.
While this team is in Uganda, I would ask that everyone who reads this blog take a minute and say a prayer for their safety and for their success in bringing the Word of God to those in Uganda who need to hear it. I also ask that you pray that their hearts and minds are open so that they can learn and grow from their experience with those who live the Christian life in Uganda. One of the blessings of going on a mission trip like this is to experience life in a country where the Gospel is not just something that is read on Sunday; it is the Word that effects every aspect of their lives. The people in Uganda may seem poor by our standards, but, believe me, they are richer beyond our wildest dreams when it comes to their faith in the Risen Christ.
Two Prayers for Missions
Everliving God, whose will it is that all should come to thee through thy Son Jesus Christ: Inspire our witness to him, that all may know the power of his forgiveness and the hope of his resurrection; who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Ghost, one God, now and for ever. Amen.
Almighty God, who hast given unto thy Son Jesus Christ the Name which is above every name, and hast taught us that there is salvation in none other: Mercifully grant that as thy faithful people have comfort and peace in his name, they may ever labor to publish it unto all nations; through the same Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
MEA CULPA: My recollection was faulty. This is not Matthew's first trip to Uganda; he went with his dad on last year's trip to Hoima.
Monday, January 3, 2011
Also on Thursday evening, we will observe an old tradition of the Church by blessing chalk. This chalk is then used to inscribe a blessing on the door post of one's home as an acknowledgement of God's blessing upon us for the new year. The chalk will be blessed prior to the conclusion of the Mass.
Finally, we plan on having a King Cake Thursday evening, so plan to hang around to enjoy is traditional treat of Epiphany (at least in Louisiana).
See you Thursday!
As for me, I shall behold thy face in righteousness; when I awake, I shall be satisfied with beholding thy form. Psalm 17: 15This short quote from the Psalms seems to encapsulate an important concept that we should all strive to understand and make a part of our lives. There will always be things and people to distract us; there will always be things that we want but don't necessarily need; there will always be those who have much more stuff that we do in this world: but, in Jesus Christ, we share in the promise of spending our eternal lives in the presence of God The Father, and all the rest of that stuff just doesn't matter that much.