|News for and about Grace Episcopal Church
||May 9, 2008|
This Sunday, we celebrate Pentecost (see Vicar's message below). It's traditional on Pentecost to wear something red. Red recalls the tongues of flame in which the Holy Spirit descended on the first Pentecost. The color red also reminds us of the blood of the martyrs.
See you in red!
Ken Lyon, EditoreGraceNotes@gracecollegehill.org
Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
Receive the Holy Spirit!
This Sunday--Pentecost Sunday--we arrive at the end of our journey through Easter. Once again, we will celebrate God's gift of the awesome and life-sustaining presence and power of the Holy Spirit.
Our Gospel taken from John 20:19-23 reads:
When it was evening on that day, the first day of the week, and the doors of the house where the disciples had met were locked for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood among them and said, "Peace be with you." After he said this, he showed them his hands and his side. Then the disciples rejoiced when they saw the Lord. Jesus said to them again, "Peace be with you. As the Father has sent me, so I send you." When he had said this, he breathed on them and said to them, "Receive the Holy Spirit. If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven them; if you retain the sins of any, they are retained."
Jesus tells his disciples, "Peace be with you. As the Father has sent me, so I send you." He then breathes on them and says "Receive the Holy Spirit." We too are given God's peace and invited to "Receive the Holy Spirit."
Along with this amazing gift, God invites us into his creative presence by allowing us to be his agents of forgiveness. Verse 23 says,
"If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven them; if you retain the sins of any, they are retained."
As always, God gives us the choice to either let go of and release or hold onto and retain the sins of any. If we make the decision to accept and receive the Holy Spirit, we have but one choice: to open ourselves and let go of anger, hurt, resentment and whatever else that keeps us from experiencing the fullness of this marvelous gift. We must let go in order to receive the gift and blessing of God's Holy Spirit.
So, my brothers and sisters, on this glorious Pentecost I invite you to RECEIVE THE SPIRIT. As the Father has sent Jesus, so Jesus sends us out to use this gift of forgiveness and reconciliation to heal our broken world.
Peace be with you. Amen. The Vicar.
|Get Homemade Shopping Bags; Save Planet; Swell Vicar's Discretionary Fund
You can save the planet and help the Vicar's Discretionary Fund by purchasing a homemade cloth shopping or book bag.
Barbara Todd has volunteered to make these bags from some of the designer fabrics in her collection. They are beautiful, sturdy, and will not only support the Discretionary Fund but, if used, will support our environment conservation efforts. The bags are $5.00 each.
See Barbara to select the fabric for your bag.
|More Work Day Thanks
We missed some Work Day "thank you's" in our previous issue. Here are more people who made that day a success.
- To Phyllis Schoenberger who arranged for the men to help.
- And to the those who supervised and worked with the men: Chuck Bowles, Laura Hall, Roger Perna, Bob Poyer and Bob Jones.
- To David Mukasa who loaned his truck for us to get the mulch.
- To Grace Staples and Chuck Bowles who organized and provided much of the excellent meal,
- and to the following who contributed and worked to serve it: Susan Dewbrey, Ernestein Flemister, Judy Handy, Wanda Miller, and Roger Perna.
- To Barbara Todd for contributing energy efficient light bulbs for many places throughout the building.
- To Belinda Perna for chairing our upcoming Ladies Luncheon.
- To Walter Handy for writing our Health and Wellness article each month.
- To Ken Lyon for his continuing help with our computers, web site, eGraceNotes, and all the other things he helps us with.
- To J. White, Judy Handy, Maria Mukasa, and all who helped in making our effort to assist Christian efforts in Africa through the sale of crafts such a success.
If you know of others who deserve a public "thank you," please let us know at firstname.lastname@example.org
|A Stewardship Moment: "Praise God from all Blessings Flow"
"Praise God from whom all Blessings Flow" is known by many of us as the "Doxology." This is perhaps the most frequently used piece of music in public worship today. Many churches sing it every Sunday. The words are so familiar that here at Grace we don't even have the lyrics printed in our Sunday Bulletin. However, most of us sing it loudly each time that we have the opportunity to do so.
This is actually the last verse of a longer hymn, "Awake, My Soul, and with the Sun," written by Thomas Ken in 1674 for his students at Winchester College. It does not say "Praise God from whom some Blessings Flow," but we are reminded that all of our blessings come from the Lord. Psalm 100 tells us that "it is He that has made us and not we ourselves."
When do we sing this hymn? We sing it as we present our offerings at the Altar each Sunday. We thank and praise God by giving back some of the abundance that we have received from him. During the same part of the service, we also recall Paul's message to us in Ephesians to "walk in love, as Christ loved us and gave himself for us . . . "
Let us remember to pay homage to our Lord as we thank him and praise him for all our blessings. Every time we sing "Praise God from whom all Blessings Flow," let us pay attention to the message that is being given to us.
Roger Perna, Chair, Stewardship Committee.
|Opportunities to Serve
- Volunteer needed to chair Grace Church participation in the College Hill Block Party, scheduled from Aug 5 to Aug 8, 6:30 pm to 9:00 pm nightly. If you can help, please let Ernestein or Jim know.
- Help us honor our Ladies on May 18.
- If you are a lady, please reserve your place at the luncheon with Belinda Perna or Jim Edgy.
- If you are a man, please volunteer to help us cook and/or serve the food. Please see Belinda Perna or Jim Edgy.
- Help Sponsor a child at the Rafiki School in Africa. The cost is between $40 and $50 per month. If you are willing to pledge toward this, please let Ernestein or Jim know.
- We are reviving the Grace Cook Book. Please bring us your recipes and give them to Judy Handy.
| Team Lachey Performs to Benefit IHN on Sunday, May 18
If you haven't yet seen Team Lachey perform in person, don't miss this golden opportunity to see the choir that won NBC's Clash of the Choirs this past December and made our city so proud. Team Lachey will be performing to benefit the Interfaith Hospitality Network
* Sunday, May 18 at 5 pm at First Unitarian Church, corner of Reading and Linton Sts. in Avondale (three blocks north of Wm. Howard Taft Av.).
Act fast! Seating is limited and ticket prices are reasonable--$20 per adult, $10 per student, children under 12 free. You can't beat the price or the cause! Tickets are being handled by First Unitarian coordinator Mimi Gingold, not by IHN. So please contact her at email@example.com
or at 513-531-9218 if you're interested (which of course you are!!).Grace Staples
*In 2007, the Interfaith Hospitality Network housed and provided food and social services to 116 adults and 208 children through its network of area churches. Grace Church is a long-time supporter of IHN.
- Drumming, Rieke and Healing: May 14 and every 2nd Wednesday at 6:30pm.
- Evening Prayer & Confession: May 17 and every 3rd Saturday at 5:00pm.
- Ladies Luncheon served by men: May 18 following 10:00am service.
- Stewardship Committee: May 21 and every 3rd Wednesday at 10:00am.
- Mission Council: May 21 and every 3rd Wednesday at 6:00pm.
- "Got Questions Brunch" & Discussion: May 25 following the 10:00am service.
- Outreach Committee: June 4 and every 1st Wednesday at 6:00pm.
- Hip-Hop Service: June 7 and every 1st Saturday at 5:00pm.