The Lord bless you and keep you. The Lord make His face to shine upon you and be gracious unto you. The Lord lift up His countenance upon you and give you Peace. (Numbers 6: 24-26)

Monday, September 30, 2013

Sunday's Sermon

Feast of Saint Michael and All Angels
Patronal Feast Day

Revelation 12: 7-12



Fr. Michael+

Challenge Questions for Sunday, October 6, 2013

ONE IN CHRIST
Ephesians 2: 11-22

1.  Why were "you Gentiles in the flesh" separated from Israel?

2.  What does it mean to be "brought near in the blood of Christ"?

3.  Have you felt like a "stranger and a sojourner" before?  Did you feel like that among friends?  In the community?  In your church?

4.  How important is it that we are members of the church, the body of Christ?  How important is it that we participate in the body of Christ?  Can we remain sojourners?

Ephesians for Monday, September 30, 2013

Ephesians 2: 11-12

11 Therefore remember that at one time you Gentiles in the flesh, called the uncircumcision by what is called the circumcision, which is made in the flesh by hands - 12 remember that you were at that time separated from Christ, alienated from the commonwealth of Israel, and strangers to the covenants of promise, having no hope and without God in the world.

Also:  Isaiah 57: 19

Saturday, September 28, 2013

A Reminder

Tomorrow is the celebration of our Patronal Feast: St. Michael and All Angels.  For those who might be wondering about this, Christ Memorial was consecrated as a memorial church for the soldiers, Confederate and Union, who fought and died at the Battle of Mansfield in April 1864.  As such, several years ago, it was decided that it would be appropriate to name St. Michael the Archangel, patron saint of soldiers, as the Patron of Christ Memorial.

Please come and celebrate this day with us, worship God our Father, study his Holy Word and stay after the 10:30 am Mass for a cook out.  Cal is cooking burgers and hot dogs.  Anyone who can, please bring your favorite side or covered dish.

The St. Luke's Medical Van will be visiting us tomorrow as well, so if you need your blood pressure checked or would like to learn more about helping St. Luke's in its ministry, this is your chance.

We are also very pleased that Deacon Kay Hunter will be with us tomorrow.  It has been some time since she was transferred to St. Matthias, and this is our opportunity to say hello to her again.

See y'all tomorrow.

Fr. Michael+

Friday, September 27, 2013

The Feast of St. Vincent de Paul



St. Vincent de Paul was born at Pouy, France on April 24, 1581. He was ordained a priest on September 23, 1600. Vincent devoted himself entirely to the alleviation of the sufferings of the poor, and to that purpose established the Confraternities of Charity, later known as the Ladies of Charity, in 1617. In 1625 he founded the Congregation of the Mission, his community of priests and brothers. With Louise de Marillac, he co-founded the Daughters of Charity in 1633. Vincent died in Paris on September 27, 1660 and was canonized in 1737. Pope Leo XIII declared him patron saint of all works of charity.

You can read more about St. Vincent de Paul here.


Fr. Michael+

Ephesians for Friday, September 27, 2013

Ephesians 2: 10

10 For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.


Thursday, September 26, 2013

Random Bible Verse(s) of the Day




10 Why do you pass judgment on your brother?  or you, why do you despise your brother?  for we shall all stand before the judgment seat of God; 11 for it is written, "As I live, says the Lord, every knee shall bow to me, and every tongue shall give praise to God."  12 So each of us shall give account of himself to God.  Romans 14: 10-12


It seems to me that there are two questions that everyone should ask themselves fairly often: 1) Do I believe that some day, on the day of my death or at the end of times, that I will stand before Jesus Christ sitting on his throne and receive judgment?  If the answer is yes, then the second question immediately applies: 2) Do I think Jesus will be pleased with what I have done?

If we take our faith seriously, if we really believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God and has redeemed the entirety of Creation with his most Sacred Blood, then we should ACT LIKE IT!  This is not always easy.  We are fallen and broken creatures who, because of the stain of original sin, cannot come to the Father and have a right relationship with him on our own.  We must do so through creation's only Savior, Jesus Christ.  This means that we must confess our sins and lay them at the foot of the Cross of Christ.  If we turn to him and away from our sins, we will be forgiven; and when our judgment day arrives, he will remember the times we spent with him for our sins will have already been forgotten.

31 When the Son of man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, then he will sit on his glorious throne.  32 Before him will be gathered all the nations, and he will separate them one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats, 33 and he will place the sheep at his right hand, but the goats at the left.  Matthew 25: 31-33

But what if the answer to the original question is, "No, I do not believe that some day, on the day of my death or at the end of times, that I will stand before Jesus Christ sitting on his throne and receive judgment."  The way that I read Scripture, it won't matter that you don't believe it.  It will happen.  Every knee will bow before the King of kings and the Lord of lords.  The sheep, those who have believed and acted according to that belief, will be at his right hand and will, "...inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world...(Matt 25: 34)"  However, those who did not believe or who believed but failed to act according to that belief will, "Depart from me, you cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels... (Matt 25: 41)"




Perhaps it is time for us and for our families and for our society to remember that we all will be judged; and that we should give thanks to God that the one who is doing the judging is merciful.

It is time to stop living for ourselves and worrying about the insignificant things of this world.

It is time to start considering the joyous promise of eternal life that can only come through our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

It is not our place to worry; it is our place to rejoice.

Live like Jesus Christ is the only thing that matters in our lives, because he is.

Fr. Michael+



Ephesians for Thursday, September 26, 2013

Ephesians 2: 8-9

8 For by grace you have been saved through faith; and this is not your own doing, it is the gift of God - 9 not because of works, lest any man should boast.

Also:  Galatians 2: 16

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

From the Daily Office

1 Corinthians 5: 9 - 6: 8

9 I wrote to you in my letter not to associate with immoral men; 10 not at all meaning the immoral of this world, or the greedy and robbers, or idolater, since then you would need to go out of the world.  11 But rather I wrote to you not to associate with any one who bears the name of brother if he is guilty of immorality or greed, or is an idolater, reviler, drunkard, or robber - not even to eat with such a one.  12 For what have I to do with judging outsiders?  Is it not those inside the church whom you are to judge?  13 God judges those outside.  "Drive out the wicked person from among you."

Chapter 6 - Lawsuits among Believers
1 When one of you has a grievance against a brother, does he dare go to law before the unrighteous instead of the saints?  2 Do you not know that the saints will judge the world?  And if the world is to be judged by you, are you incompetent to try trivial cases?  3 Do you not know that we are to judge angels?  How much more, matters pertaining to this life?  4 If then you have such cases, why do you lay them before those who are least esteemed by the church?  5 I say this to your shame.  Can it be that there is no man among you wise enough to decide between members of the brotherhood, 6 but brother goes to law against brother, and that before unbelievers?  7 To have lawsuits at all with one another is defeat for you.  Why not rather suffer wrong?  Why not rather be defrauded?  8 But you yourselves wrong and defraud, and that even your own brethren.

These are two very powerful passages that require us to think, not as citizens of the world, but as citizens of the Kingdom of God.  As I understand it, Paul is telling the people of the Church of Corinth not to harbor evil and immoral men within their ranks.  He is presupposing, rightly I might add, that those in the church are committed to avoiding immorality.  I do not think Paul is claiming the members should be perfect and that people be shunned for minor transgressions.  Paul is talking about unrepentant sinners.  We are all sinners, but as believers in Christ Jesus we seek to turn away from sin and find in Christ's forgiveness the means to walk apart from sin and death.  Those who refuse to repent and continue to engage and promote sinfulness remain mired in the ways of the world, and must therefore return to the world, until he can be reconciled to God through Christ.  See 2 Cor 5: 11 - 6: 13

The second part of the reading for today speaks to our present condition; namely the current practice of one group of Christians suing another group of Christians for property and money.  The Current Unpleasantness that grips the Episcopal Church, in truth the entire Anglican Communion, is one that must be settled within the ranks of the Church, not in courts of law in Texas, Illinois, California and Virginia.  It is reprehensible that the leadership of the Church has sought to gain financial advantage over fellow believers in Christ.  Many of those who sought to leave the Church over profound and deeply held doctrinal issues offered means to bring about a fair and equitable departure; yet those offers were rebuffed.  Now, millions upon millions of dollars have gone into the pockets of attorneys around the country.  That is money that could have been used to teach, preach and reinforce the Good News of Jesus Christ among the people of the nations.

Our mission is to bring the people of this land to a personal relationship with God our Father through his Son Jesus Christ.  Why?  Because He is the only way to salvation.  He is the only way to the Father.  He is the only way to everlasting life in Heaven.  If we spend all our time and effort suing each other, how are we supposed to do that?

Fr. Michael+

Ephesians for Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Ephesians 2: 6-7

6 ...and raised us up with him, and made us sit with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, 7 that in the coming ages he might show the immeasurable riches of his grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus.


Tuesday, September 24, 2013

 CHRIST MEMORIAL EPISCOPAL CHURCH
WEEKLY NEWSLETTER

WEEKLY GIVING
           
            Week of September 22 – $1,011.00
           
ATTENDANCE

            Sunday, September  22  @ 8:am -14  @ 10:30 am – 24
            Sunday, September 22 @ 9:15 am Family Bible Study -11

            Wednesday, September 18- 11
           
THIS WEEK’S EVENTS –
            Scriptures: 
            Genesis 28: 10-17; Psalm 103; Revelation 12: 7-12; John 1: 47-51
           
*Sunday School  September 29 with continental breakfast at 8:55 am.
 Family bible study begins at 9:15 am. in the Parish Hall.
           
**Principal Sunday Mass will be at 10:30 am.**

            Altar Guild team 4

This Sunday, September 29,  is our Patronal Feast, the Feast of St. Michael and All Angels.    
Cal will be cooking up a wonderful meal for the party following the 10:30 mass.  Please join us and bring a friend.
Also the St. Luke’s Medical Ministry will be here to show us what the ministry is doing in the communities of Northwest LA.

            Tuesday,  7:00 am will be coffee and conversation in the parish hall. 

            Bro. Lawrence on Tuesday.

Wednesday, September 25 Mass at 6:00 pm., chili supper, and Discussion  
                                   
Morning Prayer Monday through Friday 8:am in the chapel

            Reminder to all those who attended Sunday’s Family Bible study: 
            This weeks’s SOAP  – Ephesians 2: 1-10
           
BIRTHDAYS

            September
            2nd Mary Vay Cobb
            3rd Annie Durr
            10th Gayle Laffitte
            22 Emma Millard and Reed Laffitte
            23 David Maroski and Jean Calvert
            24 Joan McFadden
            26 Scott Stone
           
UPCOMING EVENTS

All announcements are posted on the bulletin board along with sign up sheets for Wednesday night attendance.  Also there is a sign up sheet if you would like to host the supper one Wednesday night.

Time to start collecting items for Operation Christmas Child.  National Collection Week is November 18-25. **You can pick up boxes in the parish hall to fill at home.  There is a sign up sheet so Fr. Michael can keep up with the number of boxes that are out.  Thanks!

SHOUT OUTS

            To Samantha for the wonderful breakfasts she has provided for the Bible Study class the past two Sundays!
            To All the Altar Guild volunteers!

ECW

            ***BAZAAR***BAZAAR***BAZAAR***BAZAAR***BAZAAR***
The time is drawing near and we are extremely short handed.  We need all volunteers, young, oldish, male, and female.  Please give some careful thought and prayer to helping with this year’s bazaar, November 7. Contact any of the ECW members if you know you can help.  Also it is not too soon to start baking and freezing for the bake sale. 
            Volunteers are needed to be in charge of the White Elephant sale.  
Please give careful consideration to the items you donate to the White Elephant sale .  Those items need to be usable and in good repair.   

                       
PRAY THIS WEEK ESPECIALLY FOR

            All those on our Intercession list.
           
            Helen Jordan
            Kermie Valentine
           


THINK ABOUT IT

It is by faith we understand that the whole world was made by God’s command so what we see was made by something that cannot be seen.  Hebrews 11:3


If you know of someone who would like to receive this newsletter
or have something you would like to add please have them send their email address to:
 jeancr71052@yahoo.com














The Feast of Our Lady of Walsingham

Today we observe the Feast of Our Lady of Walsingham.   


HAIL MARY full of grace, the Lord is with thee;
     blessed art thou among women, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus.
HOLY MARY, mother of God;
     pray for us sinners, now and at the hour of our death.  Amen.




Fr. Michael+

From the Daily Office

Psalm 78: 5-8

5 He established a testimony in Jacob, and appointed a law in Israel, which he commanded our fathers to teach to their children;

6 that the next generation might know them, the children yet unborn, and arise and tell them to their children,

7 so that they should set their hope in God, and not forget the works of God, but keep his commandments;

8 and that they should not be like their fathers, a stubborn and rebellious generation, a generation whose heart was not steadfast, whose spirit was not faithful to God.

One of the reasons for the steady decline of the Episcopal Church (and most mainline churches for that matter) over the past 50 years has been a woeful lack of catechism.  Have we taught our children well?  And I don't just mean in Sunday School.  Have we as Christian parents done a good job of raising children who knew Jesus Christ, not just as some abstract concept, but as their personal Lord and Savior?

The Church must do a better job of providing Christian Formation to all ages: children, youth and adults.  That is why we are working so hard at Christ Memorial to provide Bible Studies that will strengthen the flock.  This will not work, however, if nobody comes, and if we don't take it seriously.

How will our children and our children's children come to know Jesus Christ if we don't make learning his Word and Worshiping his Holy Name a major part of our lives?  Ours is a rebellious generation, and we should strive to show our children that it is better to live according to the law of God, the example of Jesus Christ and the guidance of the Holy Spirit.

Fr. Michael+

Ephesians for Tuesday, September 24, 2013

4 But God, who is rich in mercy, out of the great love with which he loved us, 5 even when we were dead through our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved),

Monday, September 23, 2013

Ephesians for Monday, September 23, 2013

Ephesians 2: 1-3

1 And you he made alive, when you were dead through the trespasses and sins, 2 in which you once walked, following the course of this world, following the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that is now at work in the sons of disobedience.  3 Among these we all once lived in the passions of our flesh, following the desires of body and mind, and so we were by nature children of wrath, like the rest of mankind.

Also:  Col 1: 13

Friday, September 20, 2013

Our Facebook Page

The Christ Memorial Facebook page is back up and running.  Post messages.  Post pictures.  I will be posting items of interest, schedules and announcements there soon.  Check it out.

Fr. Michael+

Not So Random Bible Verse(s) for Friday

"And when they had mocked him, they stripped him of the purple cloak, and put his own clothes on him.  And they led him out to crucify him.  And they compelled a passer-by, Simon of Cyrene, who was coming in from the country, the father of Alexander and Rufus, to carry his cross.  And they brought him to the place called Golgotha (which means the place of a skull).  And they offered him wine mingled with myrrh; but he did not take it.  And they crucified him, and divided his garments among them, casting lots for them, to decide what each should take.  And it was the third hour, when they crucified him.  Mark 15: 20-25

I think it is good to contemplate the crucifixion of Jesus Christ on Friday, the day traditionally observed as the day of his death.  It is good to cast our eyes upon the Cross which bears his body and remember the sacrifice paid by the Son of God so that all might be made free.  It is proper, I think, to do this as a preparation for the Feast which comes on Sunday as we celebrate his sacrifice and his resurrection.

Good Friday may only come around once every calendar year, but should we not also take the time to consider the Cross of Christ the other fifty-one Fridays of the year?

Fr. Michael+

Ephesians for Friday, September 20, 2013

Ephesians 1: 22-23

22 ...and he has put all things under his feet and has made him the head over all things for the church, 23 which is his body, the fulness [sic] of him who fills all in all.

Also:  Ps 8: 6; Col 1: 19; Rom 12: 5; Col 2: 17

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Ephesians for Thursday, September 19, 2013

Ephesians 1: 20-21

20 ...which he accomplished in Christ when he raised him from the dead and made him sit at his right hand in the heavenly places, 21 far above all rule and authority and power and dominion, and above every name that is named, not only in this age but also in that which is to come;

Also:  Ps 110: 1; Col 1: 6; 2: 10; 2: 15

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Ephesians for Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Ephesians 1: 18-19

18 ...having the eyes of your hearts enlightened, that you may know what is the hope to which he has called you, what are the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints, 19 and what is the immeasurable greatness of his power in us who believe, according to the working of his great might.

Also:  Deut 33: 3

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Ephesians for Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Ephesians 1: 17

...17 that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give you a spirit of wisdom and of revelation in the knowledge of him,

Monday, September 16, 2013

Pictures of the Altar

These are not the best quality.  I will have some better ones soon.



Sunday's Sermon

Luke 15: 1-10



Fr. Michael+

Random Bible Verse(s) of the Day

"Then arose Jeshua the son of Jo'zadak, with his fellow priest, and Zerub'bablel the son the She-al'ti-el with his kinsmen, and they built the altar of the God of Israel, to offer burnt offerings upon it, as it is written in the law of Moses the man of God.  They set the altar in its place, for fear was upon them because of the peoples of the lands, and they offered burnt offerings upon it to the Lord, burnt offerings morning and evening.  And they kept the feast of booths, as it was written, and offered the daily burnt offerings by number according to the ordinance, as each day required, and after that the continual burnt offerings, the offerings at the new moon and at all the appointed feasts of the Lord, and the offerings of every one who made a freewill offering to the Lord.  Ezra 3: 2-5

Not sure why these verses jumped out at me.  Maybe it's because we just restored the Altar to its proper place in the Sanctuary.  Maybe it's because we burn a lot of incense as an offering to God.  Feel free to comment.

Fr. Michael+

Ephesians for Monday, September 16, 2013

Ephesians 1: 15-16

15 For this reason, because I have heard of your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love toward all the saints, 16 I do not cease to give thanks for you, remembering you in my prayers,

Also:  Col 1: 9: Col 1: 3

Saturday, September 14, 2013

From the Rector

Yesterday was Friday the 13th.  I know this because I stumbled upon a marathon showing of all the Friday the 13th movies on SyFy Thursday night.  Gross!

I hope that this past week has been blessed by their daily study of Ephesians; and I am looking forward to seeing everyone at Mass and Bible Study tomorrow.

BIG NEWS:  The work in the Sanctuary is done!  The floor is in, the Altar is restored to its proper place and it all looks fantastic.  Thank you so much Joe Cobb for the outstanding workmanship.  It will be nice to have things back to normal.

A really big thanks also goes out to Walter, John and Robert Asseff who provided the contributions to make the restoration of the Sanctuary possible.

Please be thinking, praying and shopping in preparation for our Operation Christmas Child effort this year.  We also need contributions to pay for the shipping of the boxes overseas.  This year, we are planning on registering our boxes so that we can track where they go.  We are also going to put a personalized card into each box so the recipient will know from whence it came and who is praying for them.

 I hope to see everyone on Sunday!

Fr. Michael+

Friday, September 13, 2013

Ephesians for Friday, September 13, 2013

Ephesians 1: 13-14

13 In him you also, who have heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation, and have believed in him, were sealed with the Holy Spirit, 14 who is the guarantee of our inheritance until we acquire possession of it, to the praise of his glory.

Also:  2 Cor 1: 22

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Random Bible Verse(s) of the Day

"Joshua summoned all Israel, their elders and heads, their judges and officers, and said to them, 'I am now old and well advanced in years; and you have seen all that the Lord your God has done to all these nations for your sake, for it is the Lord your God who has fought for you.  Behold, I have allotted to you as an inheritance for your tribes those nations that remain, along with all the nations that I have already cut off, from the Jordan to the Great Sea in the west.  The Lord your God will push them back before you, and drive them out of your sight; and you shall possess their land, as the Lord your God promised you.  Therefore be very steadfast to keep and do all that is written in the book of the law of Moses, turning aside from it neither to the right and nor to the left, that you may not be mixed with these nations left here among you, or make mention of the names of their gods, or swear by them, or serve them, or bow down yourselves to them, but cleave to the Lord your God as you have done to this day.  Joshua 23: 2-8

The admonition from God to his people about staying true to the law of Moses should ring true to us today.  God set forth a law so that his people would be able to tell the difference between right and wrong; the Truth and the lies of the Prince of this World.  It would behoove us well to remember that.

Fr. Michael+

Ephesians for Thursday, September 12, 2013

Ephesians 1: 11-12

11 In him, according to the purpose of him who accomplishes all things according to the counsel of his will, 12 we who first hoped in Christ have been destined and appointed to live for the praise of his glory.

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

In the Rector's Humble Opinion

Twelve years ago, I stepped out of the shower and heard the radio reports of a plane crashing into the World Trade Center in New York.  Being a student of history, my first thought went to a similar incident which occurred during the Second World War.  A B-25 bomber, lost in bad weather, hit the upper floors of the Empire State Building.  A tragedy, to be certain, but an accident nonetheless.

Our current condition, however, was no accident.  Throughout the day, twelve years ago, I and my co-workers managed to get a small amount of work done in between trips to the break room where the television was bringing us the minute by minute details of what was happening in New York, Washington, and Pennsylvania.  I watched as the South Tower fell.  Everyone in the nation watched in stunned disbelief.

Since that time, our nation has gone to war and won many victories.  We have endured many trials and upsets to our lives which we all knew would never be the same as soon as the second plane flew hit the building.  Many have died and been wounded in the service of their country.  They deserve our praise and thanks.  Those who died on 9/11/01 shall be remembered.

It is only by the grace of God that we enjoy our liberty and our freedom; and we forget that simple fact at our own peril.  God has provided for us.  He has protected us.  His guiding hand can be seen at work throughout our collective history, and in our personal lives, if we only take the time to see it.

On this anniversary of 9/11/01, may we all remember the fallen and give thanks to those who stand tall in defense of our nation.  Most of all, may we render honor where honor is due, praise where it is most deserved and give thanks to the most holy Name of Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior who delivers us from the fear and oppression of sin and the grave and gives to all who believe in him everlasting life.

Fr. Michael+

Random Bible Verse(s) of the Day

"There shall come forth a shoot from the stump of Jesse, and a branch shall grow out of his roots.  And the Spirit of the Lord shall rest upon him, the spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of counsel and might, the spirit of knowledge and the fear of the Lord.  And his delight shall be in the fear of the Lord.  Isaiah 11: 1-3a

This is a message of hope.  I think that is a message we need today.

Fr. Michael+

Ephesians for Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Ephesians 1: 7-10

7 In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of his grace 8 which he lavished upon us.  9 For he has made known to us in all wisdom and insight the mystery of his will, according to his purpose which he set forth in Christ 10 as a plan for the fulness [sic] of time, to unite all things in him, things in heaven and things on earth.

Also: Col 1: 14; Gal 4: 4

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

 CHRIST MEMORIAL EPISCOPAL CHURCH
WEEKLY NEWSLETTER

WEEKLY GIVING
           
            Week of September 8 - $7,320.96
           
ATTENDANCE

            Sunday, September  8  @ 8:am -16  @ 10:30 am – 34
            Sunday, September 8 @ 9:15 am Family Bible Study - 34

            Wednesday, September 4- 18
           
THIS WEEK’S EVENTS –
            Scriptures: 
            Jeremiah 4: 11-12, 22-28; Psalm 14;  1 Timothy 1: 12-17; Luke 15: 1-10
           
*Sunday School  September 15 with continental breakfast at 8:55 am.
 Family bible study begins at 9:15 am. in the Parish Hall.
           
**Principal Sunday Mass will be at 10:30 am.**

            Altar Guild team 2

            Tuesday,  7:00 am will be coffee and conversation in the parish hall. 

            Bro. Lawrence on Tuesday.

Wednesday, September 11 Mass at 6:00 pm., dinner, and Discussion  
            This week’s dinner will be a Mexican fiesta! Ole’
                       
Morning Prayer Monday through Friday 8:am in the chapel

            Reminder to all those who attended Sunday’s Family Bible study: 
            This weeks’s SOAP  – Ephesians 1:1-14
           
BIRTHDAYS

            September
            2nd Mary Vay Cobb
            3rd Annie Durr
            10th Gayle Laffitte
            22 Emma Millard and Reed Laffitte
            23 David Maroski and Jean Calvert
            24 Joan McFadden
            26 Scott Stone
           

YOUTH NEWS         


UPCOMING EVENTS

All announcements are posted on the bulletin board along with sign up sheets for Wednesday night attendance.  Also there is a sign up sheet if you would like to host the supper one Wednesday night.

Time to start collecting items for Operation Christmas Child.  National Collection Week is November 18-25.

SHOUT OUTS

            To all those who attended Christ Memorial’s First Family Bible Study this past Sunday.  The parish hall was very festive with fresh flowers on each table and cheerful table coverings.  Thanks Samantha! A delicious breakfast presented by Hwy 171 CafĂ© got us off to a great start.
            Fr. Michael presented an over view of the Bible study program SOAP in which we all study the Bible together with our own families and our church family.   
            It is never too last to join us on Sunday mornings.  See you there!!

ECW

            ***BAZAAR***BAZAAR***BAZAAR***BAZAAR***BAZAAR***
            The time is drawing near and we are extremely short handed.  WE need all volunteers, young, oldish, male, and female.  Please give some careful thought and prayer to helping with this year’s bazaar, November 7. Contact any of the ECW members if you know you can help.  Also it is  not too soon to start baking and freezing for the bake sale. 
            A volunteer or volunteers are needed to be in charge of the White Elephant sale.  
            Please give careful consideration to the items you donate to the White Elephant sale .  Those items need to be usable and in good repair.   

                       
PRAY THIS WEEK ESPECIALLY FOR

            All those on our Intercession list.
           
            Helen Jordan
            Kermie Valentine
           


THINK ABOUT IT

Who are you listening to??

            God’s voice stills you.                        Satan’s voice rushes you.
            God’s voice leads you.                       Satan’s voice pushes you.
            God’s voice reassures you.    Satan’s voice frightens you.
            God’s voice comforts you.      Satan’s voice worries you.
            God’s voice calms you.                       Satan’s voice obsesses you.




If you know of someone who would like to receive this newsletter
or have something you would like to add please have them send their email address to:
 jeancr71052@yahoo.com














Random Bible Verse(s) of the Day

"I know your works, your toil and your patient endurance, and how you cannot bear evil men but have tested those who call themselves apostles but are not, and found them to be false;  I know you are enduring patiently and bearing up for my name's sake, and you have not grown weary.  But I have this against you, that you have abandoned the love you had at first.  Remember then from what you have fallen, repent and do the works you did at first.  If not, I will come to you and remove your lampstand from its place, unless you repent.  Yet this you have, you hate the works of the Nicola'itans, which I also hate.  He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.  To him who conquers I will grant to eat of the tree of life, which is in the paradise of God."  Revelation 2: 2-7

I wonder what this message to the Church in Ephesus says to us today?  What does it say about standing firm for the faith and acting according to the love of God and love of neighbor?  What does it say about resisting heresy (the Nicola'itans may have been a gnostic sect associated with a return to pagan worship)?  What does it say about our nation, founded according to the principle that our rights and responsibilities are given to us from God?

Discuss.  Please.  Use the comments below.  Start a discussion.

Fr. Michael+

Ephesians for Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Ephesians 1: 5-6

He destined us in love to be his sons through Jesus Christ, according to the purpose of his will, to the praise of his glorious grace which he freely bestowed on us in the Beloved.

Also:  Rom 8: 29-30; Col 1: 13

Monday, September 9, 2013

Sunday's Sermon

Jeremiah 18: 1-11



Fr. Michael+

Random Bible Verse(s) of the Day

"You shall make for yourselves no idols and erect no graven image or pillar, and you shall not set up a figured stone in your land, to bow down to them; for I am the Lord your God.  You shall keep my sabbaths [sic] and reverence my sanctuary: I am the Lord.  If you walk in my statures and observe my commandments and do them, then I will give you your rains in their season, and the land shall yield its increase, and the trees of the field shall yield their fruit.  And your threshing shall last to the time of vintage, and the vintage shall last to the time for sowing; and you shall eat your bread to the full, and dwell in your land securely.  And I will give peace in the land, and you shall lie down, and none shall make you afraid; and I will remove evil beasts from the land, and the sword shall not go through your land.  And you shall chase your enemies, and they shall fall before you by the sword.  Five of you shall chase a hundred, and a hundred of you shall chase then thousand; and your enemies shall fall before you by the sword.  And I will have regard for you and make you fruitful and multiply your, and will confirm my covenant with you.  And you shall eat old store long kept, and you shall clear out the old to make way for the new.  And I will make m abode among you, and my soul shall not abhor you.  And I will walk among you, and will b your God, and you shall be my people.  I am the Lord your God, who brought you forth out of the land of Egypt, that you should not be their slaves; and I have broken the bars of your yoke and made you walk erect."  Leviticus 26: 1-13

In my Bible (RSV), this passage is subtitled "Rewards for Obedience".  God made a covenant with his people; he entered into a contract, really.  He asked his people to follow him and not the dumb idols and false gods of the world.  He asked that they abide in him.  He gave them the Law of Moses so that they could begin to understand what about the world is so dangerous and by avoiding them grow in their knowledge and love of God.  In doing all that, God promises to take care of them, to provide for them, to protect them.  Now, contrary to the teaching of some misguided, modern "profits" (that is a pun), God does not promise that if you do everything just right, you'll get the Cadillac you always wanted or have a huge mansion or be happy and carefree all the time.  No!  He does promise that through obedience to his will, we will find all the things necessary to be joyful in the Lord.  He will see to that we have what we need.  He will see us through times of trouble and grief.  He will console, and he will elevate us when we obediently turn to him.

The next passage: "Penalties for Disobedience".  It is quite long.

Fr. Michael+

Ephesians for Monday, September 9, 2013

Ephesians 1: 1-4

1 Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God, To the saints who are also faithful in Christ Jesus: 2 Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.  3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places, 4 even as he chose us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before him.

Also:  2 Cor 1: 3

Saturday, September 7, 2013

Sunday Bible Study and New Mass Schedule

Tomorrow is the beginning of a new year of Sunday School at Christ Memorial.  We begin with Mass at 8 am in the Chapel of St. Anne.  Then we move to the Parish Hall for breakfast at 8: 55 followed by Sunday Bible Study for all ages.  The principal Mass of the day is now at 10:30 am in the Church.

During the Mass, I will be installing the new members of the Altar Guild and recognizing the many years of service of our retiring Altar Guild Chair, Ms. Ann Peters.

Following the 10:30 Mass, there will be a meeting of the ECW in the Parlor.

Blessings to everyone this night, and I look forward to seeing you tomorrow!

Fr. Michael+

Friday, September 6, 2013

Random Bible Verse(s) of the Day

"Draw near to me, you who are untaught, and lodge in my school.  Why do you say you are lacking in these things, and why are your souls very thirsty?  I opened my mouth and said, 'Get these things for yourselves without money.  Put your neck under the yoke and let your souls receive instruction, it is to be found close by.  See with your eyes that I have labored little and found for myself much rest.  Get instruction with a large sum of silver, and you will gain by it much gold.  May your soul rejoice in his mercy, and may you not be put to shame when you praise him.  Do your work before the appointed time, and in God's time he will give you your reward.'"  Sirach 51: 23-30

Seems appropriate with Sunday Bible School about to start.

Fr. Michael+

Reminder

ALTAR GUILD MEETING

Saturday, September 7

9:00 am in the Church

Thursday, September 5, 2013

In the Rector's Humble Opinion

IS IT A JUST WAR?

Congress is currently deliberating a resolution to authorize military intervention in the civil war that continues to plague the people of Syria.  There has been much debate about what role the United States, indeed all the nations of the world, should play in regard to the recent use of chemical weapons in what has become a human tragedy of immense proportions.  In times like these, many look to the Church with questions about what the proper course of action might be; and for centuries the Church, the Body of Christ, has tried to find the best answer to some very difficult theological and moral problems.

It was St. Augustine of Hippo who laid the groundwork for the Church’s doctrine on Just War; and, while this brief article cannot embrace every aspect of that doctrine which has continued to develop over the past 1500+ years, we can consider a few of the key points relevant to our current situation.

First, our Judeo-Christian heritage has long recognized the need for a neighbor to come to the aid of another neighbor, particularly when that neighbor is threatened by someone of greater strength.  Is it moral to stand by and allow a preventable evil to befall a neighbor when one has the ability to save them?  Put another way, if we are walking down the street and come upon a poor fellow being beaten by a gang, do we lend a hand by calling a cop or even by intervening directly, or do we walk to the other side of the street and go about our business?

Certainly, there are people in Syria who are in need of help, but for the last two years, the United States and the rest of the world has been walking across the street and looking the other way.  It is an unconscionable tragedy that so many people lost their lives on August 21 because of Bashar al Assad’s decision to use chemical weapons, however, where was the demand for action over the past two years as thousands, perhaps hundreds of thousands of men, women and children have died throughout the country.  Since their deaths were caused by bullets, bombs, mortar rounds and conventional artillery shells, are their deaths somehow less meaningful in the eyes of the international community?  We have had plenty of humanitarian cause to involve ourselves in Syria over the last two years, so perhaps it is now finally time to acknowledge our moral responsibility to our neighbor.

Second, the question of whether a war is just cannot be answered simply on the basis of providing help to a neighbor, however.  It is much more complex than that.  We must also consider whether what we are intending to do will actually help the people who are being hurt.  In our current situation, the President cannot say often enough how isolated and temporary our strike against Syria will be.  No one wants to see American troops deployed to Syria, and our military and civilian leadership are all taking great pains to assure the nation that there will be no “boots on the ground”.  The United State Navy has ships in the Eastern Mediterranean which, we are told, have more than enough ordinance to strike targets in Syria that will seriously degrade Assad’s ability to wage war.  I have great confidence in our men and women at arms, and their ability to put the right weapons on the right targets; but that is really not the issue.  The issue is whether that will bring about the end of the problem at hand.

We might be able to destroy major elements of Assad’s army, possibly even his chemical weapon stores, but will cruise missile strikes alone so degrade his ability to fight that he will sue for peace?  I have serious doubts.  Is our goal the removal of Assad from power, and if so, who will we support in his place?  Are we prepared to do everything that is necessary to bring about such a change in regime and the nation building that will result from such an occurrence?

Then, we must consider the almost inevitable unintended consequences of any military action.  Any missile strike, no matter how well coordinated, will most likely produce additional damage to an already weakened social infrastructure and result in collateral damage, injury and death among the civilian population.  We must also consider the possibility that, if successful, our efforts to help the Syrians might bring about a new government headed by the same extremist elements that are currently destabilizing so much of the Middle East.

Third, we must ask whether all other options have been exhausted.  As it stands today, no other country in the world is prepared to join in a military intervention in Syria.  Much of the reason for that is politics, pure and simple.  Russia is Syria’s closest ally and trading partner and, therefore, has no political incentive to act as a catalyst for peace even though they may be in the best position to make it happen.  Have we really exhausted every diplomatic option?  Have we considered other options short of launching cruise missiles at the country?  Would it not be more just to address the individual who is the only person in the country with the authority to order the use of weapons of mass destruction?  If Bashar al Assad is the problem, would it be more appropriate, and, in the end, more moral to eliminate him and spare the people of Syria from a punishment more suited to their leader and their leader alone?


The way I read it, Just War Doctrine does not seek to absolve us of our culpability; rather, it seeks to find a way to reconcile how we, a broken and fallen people, can navigate a dangerous minefield of moral and ethical problems.  It is not right to wage war upon another nation or culture merely because we can or because we think it in our best interest.  Conversely, it is not right to turn a blind eye to the suffering of our neighbor.  The real problem lies in doing that which will cause the least amount of harm; help the greatest number of people; and allow us to stand repentant and humble before God on the Day of Judgment.

Fr. Michael+

(Author's note:  This is not meant to be an exhaustive theological treatise on Just War Doctrine.  This is a blog post which seeks to bring to the fore what I consider to be the most germane parts of a very complex discussion.  Probably the best thing that any of us can do is pray for the guidance of the Holy Spirit and for the peace of God which passes all understanding for all the people of the world who suffer.  Please do not be afraid to comment on this post.  I welcome the discussion.  MWM+)

Random Bible Verse(s) of the Day

"You have heard that it was said, 'You shall not commit adultery.'  But I say to you that every one who looks at a woman lustfully has already committed adultery with her in his heart.  If your right eye causes you to sin, pluck it out and throw it away; it is better that you lose one of your members than that your whole body be thrown into hell.  And if your right hand causes you to sin, cut it off and throw it away; it is better that you lose one of your members than your whole body go into hell."  Matthew 5: 27-30

This comes from a discussion I recently had about purity.  Our culture today is totally disordered when it come to our perspective of human sexuality and how men and women relate to one another.  God created us, man and woman, and gave us the gift of love and sex so that we might find comfort and pleasure in one another, and for the purpose of procreation.  According to God's economy, man and woman mutually support and respect each other and that gift is properly shared within the bond of the union which we have come to recognize as the Sacrament of Marriage.

Today, however, society places a much higher value on the heightened sexuality of individuals and the power and status that imparts to them.  Children have become more sexualized at a younger and younger age, to the point where the Chicago Public Schools are about to start teaching sex ed to kindergartners.  Young men and women are bombarded with images of scantily clad people on every form of media.  Pornography is only a click away on any computer or smart phone.  The institution of Marriage is routinely mocked and is no longer held up as the ideal for a sound culture.

We must embrace the notion that sex, a gift from God, is not meant to be displayed and flaunted in the public square at every opportunity.  Dressing provocatively, sexting and posting inappropriate posts on social media sites are not examples of men and women exercising their freedoms or displaying their personality or innate sense of self.  These actions are demeaning and pervert the true nature of God's intentions for us.  There are other ways to define oneself than to compete to see who can show the most skin or pose in the most provocative manner.

We are called to remain pure in two ways.  First, we should dress appropriately and to avoid being the object of temptation for someone else.  Second, we should look away and to avoid putting inappropriate images and temptations in our minds that can be used against us by the Enemy.

Adam and Eve did not recognize there nakedness until after the Fall.  We are the sons of Adam and the daughters of Eve, and we therefore have a disordered view of human sexuality.  We are also heirs to the Kingdom of God through our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, and through him we find the ability to repent of our sins and to find a sense of order in our lives according to God's Will.  I believe that it is God's Will that we remain pure in heart, body and spirit; man and woman united in the bond of marriage and sharing in the intimacy of the marriage bed.

Fr. Michael+

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Announcements

THERE WILL BE A MEETING OF THE ECW 
AFTER THE 10:30 MASS THIS SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 8 
All women are invited to attend.


THIS SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 8, WE BEGIN OUR NEW SUNDAY SCHEDULE
8:00 am - Mass in the Chapel of St. Anne

8:55 am - Breakfast Served in the Parish Hall

9:15 am - Sunday Bible Study
This is a family style Bible Study that is open to all ages.  Families are encouraged to attend 
and spend time in God's Word together.

10:30 am - Mass in the Church *NEW TIME*


A NEW PARISH DIRECTORY IS IN THE WORKS.
Draft copies should be ready in a week or so.

Not Quite So Random Bible Verse(s) of the Day

"Be appalled, O heavens, at this, be shocked, be utterly desolate, says the Lord, for my people have committed two evils: they have forsaken me, the fountain of living waters, and hewed out cisterns for themselves, broken cisterns, that can hold no water."  Jeremiah 2: 12-13

This is not a totally random set of verses because they come from last Sunday's Lectionary.  I preached a little bit about the broken cisterns, but it has been bugging me all week that I didn't say more about this imagery and how it relates to our relationship to God.  To me, it seems obvious that God is telling his people, through the prophet Jeremiah, that they have come to rely far to much on themselves and on their own abilities.  The Living Water, a recurring image in Scripture, refers to God's continued provision for the welfare of his people and to the promise of redemption and heavenly renewal contained in the Living Word, Jesus Christ.  Yet, we have a tendency to look for ways to collect or manufacture our own provision and even to seek our own way to the Father.

Unable to shake this image, this morning another account from Scripture occurred to me.  When God lead his people out of bondage in Egypt and into the desert of Sinai, he heard the cry of the people in need and provided them with food and water.  God provided manna from Heaven each day for the people, but he warned that no one should collect more than their portion each day (twice that for the Sabbath), and that no one should store up the manna from day to day for it would not last.  God promised to feed them, and to take more than their share or to store it up implied a mistrust that God would continue to give them everything that they needed.  When the people grew tired of the manna, God provided quail so they would have meat.  The message is that God provides us what we need, and it is not up to us to second guess or to doubt  that he will continue to do so.

Other passages about widows with bottomless jars of flour and oil also come to mind.  Then, there are a couple of places in the Gospels where Jesus provides food for some people - several thousand at a time, I believe.

There is nothing wrong with digging a cistern, as long as that is what God desires.  There is nothing amiss about making plans and executing them, as long as the Holy Spirit is the author of those plans.  There is nothing erroneous about believing, as long as the focus of that belief is Jesus Christ.  We have everything to fear when we dig, plan and believe according to false gods and lifeless idols.  Our God is a jealous God, not because he needs our undivided attention to support his flagging ego, but because he knows what is best for us, and he wants us to be righteous in his sight and present with him in the life to come.

Fr. Michael+

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Weekly Newsletter

 CHRIST MEMORIAL EPISCOPAL CHURCH
WEEKLY NEWSLETTER

WEEKLY GIVING
           
            Week of September 1 - $1,432.58
           
ATTENDANCE

            Sunday, September  1  @ 8:am -12  @ 10:am - 23

            Wednesday, August  28- 18
           
THIS WEEK’S EVENTS –
           
            WONDERFUL THINGS HAPPENING THIS WEEK!!!!!!!!

            Saturday, September 7, at 9:00 am a meeting of the altar guild.  Everyone who is
interested in this ministry is invited and needed.  Fr. Michael will instruct us on the duties of the altar guild.  
                       
*Sunday School will resume September 8 with breakfast at 8:55 am.  Family bible study begins at 9:15 am. in the Parish Hall.
           
            **Principal Sunday Mass will be at 10:30 am.**

            Tuesday,  7:00 am will be coffee and conversation in the parish hall. 

            Bro. Lawrence on Tuesday.

            Wednesday, September 4 Mass at 6:00 pm., dinner, and Discussion  
            This weeks dinner will be pot luck.
                       
Morning Prayer Monday through Friday 8:am in the chapel
           
BIRTHDAYS

            September
            2nd Mary Vay Cobb
            3rd Annie Durr
            22 Emma Millard
            23 David Maroski and Jean Calvert
            24 Joan McFadden
            26 Scott Stone
           

YOUTH NEWS         


UPCOMING EVENTS

All announcements are posted on the bulletin board along with sign up sheets for Wednesday night attendance.  Also there is a sign up sheet if you would like to host the supper one Wednesday night.

Time to start collecting items for Operation Christmas Child.  National Collection Week is November 18-25.

SHOUT OUTS


To all the many individuals who volunteer at Christ Memorial, to love and serve as one body in Christ.   

ECW

            Meeting Sunday, September 8, following 10:30 am mass.
                       
PRAY THIS WEEK ESPECIALLY FOR

            All those on our Intercession list.
           
            Helen Jordan
            Kermie Valentine
           


THINK ABOUT IT

To forgive is to set a prisoner free and discover that prisoner was you.
           
(please take note that some of these are not my original thoughts, just a little
                plagiarism going on)



If you know of someone who would like to receive this newsletter
or have something you would like to add please have them send their email address to:
 jeancr71052@yahoo.com