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Issue 195, December 9
, 2012

A spiritual home where all are welcome; a healing place in a broken world.

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The Meaning of Advent


Dear People of Grace:


During Advent, we contemplate the three comings of Our Lord Jesus Christ.  


Last Sunday, we pondered His Second Coming at the end of the ages. What do we believe about that? Do we take seriously the words of the Nicene Creed- "He shall come again in glory to judge both the living and the dead?"  What do we believe about our personal day of Judgment before the seat of Christ?  Heavy questions to consider at the beginning of a season filled with light and joy.  Are we ready to meet Jesus at the end of the ages?   


For the next two Sundays we contemplate the call to repentance as we prepare for the coming of Jesus in the flesh at Christmas.  John the Baptist is central to this call.  He, along with the Blessed Virgin Mary, is the hero of Adventide.  He calls us to our own personal repentance and asks us the telling question:  Are we prepared as a follower of Jesus to be ready to come and meet Him at the Altar on Christmas Eve?  Can we say yes to our Savior by our lives and actions and will Christmas mean more to us than a secular holiday filled with gifts, and food, and merriment.  Will Christmas be celebrated with Christ in it as our primary focus?   


The fourth Sunday of Advent is Mary and Joseph's Sunday.  It reminds us of these holy saints moving slowly to Bethlehem.  Mary is pregnant because she was willing to accept the angel Gabriel's proposition despite any difficulties which it might cause her and Joseph.  Joseph is willing to trust Mary and to believe that she is the Mother of God, the Theotokos, the God-Bearer.  The Fourth Sunday helps us to remember another coming of Christ.  Not the Second Coming, not the Coming in the Flesh at Christmas--but the Coming of Jesus into our hearts in our everyday actions and choices and behaviors.  Are we as bold as Mary to let Him into our every decision---even the hard ones?  Is our heart prepared for such a complete coming as this/?  These are things to ponder during the Advent Season - the Second Coming, the Incarnation, God in the Flesh, and finally the Incarnate One hopefully living every day in our words, our actions, and our hearts.  


A Blessed Advent to all from Fr. Bob+

Lighting Our Advent Candles
The Advent season is not
without its own sense of drama. During Advent at Grace, our worship begins in darkness until the Advent candle(s) are lit, signifying the soon-to-be-coming light of the world in the person of Jesus, the Christ.

Each of the first three Sundays of Advent, we light a purple candle, 
signifying a time for repentance and reflection on the coming of Christ.  


On the fourth Sunday, we add a rose candle, signifying joy in the hope of his coming.  


Finally, on Christmas, we light the final candle--a white one--the Christ candle!

 Thanks to ...
... Pastor Rita Bryant, husband Cornell, and members of the Life Renewal Fellowship Church for repainting the downstairs women's restrooms.  Take a look!

... David Mukasa and Bob Jones for installing the new stove.

... Ruth Bertram and Roger Perna for all the work you've done getting the treasurer's files in order the past couple of weeks.

... Wanda Miller and Roger Perna for help with a personal matter this week, from Rhonda Sharp.

... Rhonda Sharp, Grace Staples, Fr. Bob, Jackie Millay and Carol Lyon for their contributions to this week's eGraceNotes and Grace Notes.

Absalom Jones Altar Flowers
Altar flowers this week donated in honor and memory of Rhonda Sharp's mother, Cloma Partin, who died on December 8, 2004 (1934-2004).

Last week's altar flowers were given in honor of the late Donald G. Wake (1926-60) by Don Wake.

Sign Up Now for Christmas Flowers

Welcome the Christ child this Christmas with beautiful flowers on the altar and poinsettias around the baptismal font. If you would like to help donate flowers please sign the Christmas Flower Sheet by the Belmont door or donate online on Grace's website. Please sign up as early as possible so we can get the best selection of flowers. Thank you.


To donate altar flowers
on the Sunday of your choosing, see the sign-up sheet in the church near the upper Belmont entrance. Or call the office. Or donate online here.    
Prayers and Thanksgivings

Prayers of praise and thanksgiving are offered for the unexpected improvement of Patty Rogers, the 14 year old girl with Neuroblastoma the congregation has been praying for.


Prayers for healing are asked for Judy Handy, Rev. Ernestein, Patty Rogers, The Rogers Family, Ken Lyon, Carl, Jackie, Robb Martin, Kim Martin, Melissa, Tara, Paul, The Erik Handy Family, The Darryl Handy Family, The Burlew Family, The Fantetti Family, Harry Shafer, Viola and Bill and Johnny, Lee Hardy, Christine Hicks, Debbie, Chris and Charlie, Derek, Denise, The Visbal Family, Rhonda, The Partin Family, The Sharp Family, The Marshall Family, The Bennett Family, Nadine Renee, Bob, Teresa and Kids, Jo Jo, Jared, Shirley L. Allen, Melissa, David , Theresa Buskirk Neabrey, Marrilee Atkins, Leroy, Carol Lyon, Maree White, Verene and Katrina, Tom, Gayle, Elaine Robinson, Rita Lyon, Anna Keefer, Brenda Armbruster and her family, JB, Christine Zuniga, Tonya, Shonda and her Mother, Cornell Bryant, Pastor Rita and Family, Karen and Diane, KiKi, Sonia, The Coal Miners and their family's who are being laid off, Virginia Chapel, Hurricane Sandy Victims, Bonnie Willenbrink, Kay, Our President and Our Country, Judith, Peter Hawkins, Doug Jones, Katrina Gamble, Donna, Sam Spade, Judy Jenne, Bill Jenne.


Prayers for "shut-ins," (members and friends who are often not able to attend) are asked for Nancy Hall, Janet Henthorn, Carl Relyea, Mary Jane Showers, Elizabeth Kelly, Jane Strohmeier, Naomi Koester, Elva Gscheidle, Jo Carroll, Anne Henneberg.


To add or subtract from this list, please contact the Church Office (513-541-2415, office@gracecollegehill.org) with the names of the persons to be included on this list.  If you email, please place "Prayer Request" in the subject line.  Please also indicate whether the name of the prayer recipient is to be listed in the bulletin.


Names remain on the list for about a month. Please let us know if people should be put back on the list.   


Pastoral Care. If you need pastoral care or know of someone who does, please call or email the office (513-541-2415, office@gracecollegehill.org). Keep us informed about about illness, hospital stays, requests for visits, communion, and prayers for special concerns.
Episcopal Community Services Foundation Serves Needy in Southern Ohio  
The eleven volunteers of ECSF's grants committee logged over 3,000 miles in site visits throughout the Diocese this fall, then worked incredibly hard to draft a recommended grants budget to leverage your donation for greatest impact by teaming up with practical front-line ministries.



Now the grants committee is praying in Advent hope--and passing the baton to you. ECSF's grants budget comes entirely from freewill donations to the annual fund. 100% of these donations goes into community ministry grants. A pantry can turn one dollar into four meals of groceries! It's easy to give online.


Communities in Appalachian Ohio continue to suffer soaring unemployment and meager wages. "Wow! It's just been one of the harder years of our lives just to survive!" one family wrote to volunteers organizing the free Christmas toy store at St. Andrew's in Washington Court House. "We have a family of 4 on an income of $350-$400 a week with rent at $272.00 a week.  I am overwhelmed with the gratefulness to have gifts that they like." 


Your gifts to ECSF last year equipped us to send 18 grants totaling $55,000--31.9% of our 2012 grant dollars--to churches providing food, shelter, and emergency assistance to people in the Appalachian communities of the state.    

Read more about what ESCF has done, is doing, and will do with your help at  ecsfsouthernohio.org.   

Selected Short Subjects

Empower Your Weekend--Ease the Shift into 2013--With ChiKung/TaiChi. Jackie Millay is offering intermediate level ChiKung/TaiChi classes at Grace Church on Friday evenings from 6:30 to 8 pm starting Friday, January 4 and ending Friday, February 1. This series of 5 classes will expand and strengthen your connection with the 'Chi' (vital life force energy).  We are building on what we have started with.  Please join us in further enjoyment of your abundant Chi flow. The cost is $50.00 for the 5-class series ($40.00 if you preregister before Wednesday, January 2).   

A small female cat came to the Convent of the Transfiguration looking for a loving home, but the sisters aren't able to keep her. She's had all her shots and is house-trained. Phone Sr. Hope at 513-846-4675 if you're interested.
Christ Church Cathedral has announced several special music programs for Advent. See their most recent newsletter here

Lost & Found. There is a box of Lost and Found items in the office.  Please stop by and take a look at it and see if anything is yours. 

The Education for Ministry people are now publishing an enewsletter--EfM News.  You can see the most recent issue here. There's a place to sign up for your very own subscription at the bottom of the page.
Give to a Well-Deserved Tribute to Retiring Bishop Price:  Buy Mosquito Nets

Some of our congregation may not be aware of the huge impact retiring Bishop Kenneth Price made on us back in 2006. At that time, due to circumstances beyond our control, our parish was teetering on the brink of closure.  


A call went to interim Bishop Price, who appeared the following Sunday and in the following weeks surrounded us with resources: worshipers, deacons, Sunday School teachers, IT and graphic specialists, a Canon of the diocese to meet with us and advise us, a supporting grant and, finally, a full-time subsidized intern priest. These timely resources truly helped us recover both in spirit and substance and literally saved our parish and our ministry in this area.


We haven't seen much of Bishop Price recently because after the election of Bishop Breidenthal he was called to help with another effort of reorganization and rejuvenation of the diocese of Pittsburgh. After three years in this successful effort, he is now retiring. To honor his service, the diocese is mounting a campaign to raise $18,000 from the parishes to purchase mosquito nets to save lives (by 50%) in Africa through the NetsforLife program of Episcopal Relief & Development. Funds raised by Dec. 31, 2012 will be matched 100% by the Diocese of Southern Ohio.


Time is short, the need is great and we have so much for which to be thankful. Please pick up an envelope on the sign up table starting Dec. 2 or put a check or cash in the offering plate designated for NetsforLife, or donate online on the Grace website.  


Thank you!


The Outreach Team

 Coming Attractions

The online Grace Church Calendar lists most everything we know about that's happening at Grace Church. Here's a snapshot of a week's worth of the online calendar as of today.  If something's not listed, or if you see errors, please tell the office (office@gracecollegehill.org, 513-541-2415).



Worship Service Schedule & Participants

Here is the worship schedule through the end of December, as of today.  The up-to-date schedule is available on our website (gracecollegehill.org).

If you're scheduled and can't make it, find a substitute and let Ken Lyon (webmaster@gracecollegehill.org, 513-542-2941) know so the schedule can be updated. 

Sunday Service Participants are needed in all volunteer positions. We will provide training as needed. We are a Common Ministry Parish - everyone is encouraged to serve. Contact Judy Handy (jhandy23@cinci.rr.com, 513-681-5829).      

Sunday, December 9: Eucharist II

  • Celebrant: The Rev. Bob Hufford
  • Keyboards: Bill Jenne
  • Acolyte: Mariah Mukasa
  • Healing Minister (lead): J White
  • Chalice: Carol Lyon
  • Lector: Maria Mukasa
  • Prayers of the People: John Thayer
  • Offering Counters: John Thayer & Ruth Bertram
  • Usher: Phyllis Mukasa
  • Altar Guild: Jacqueline McCray
  • Flower Guild: Wanda Miller
  • 9am Adult Bible Study: Ken Lyon
  • 10am Sunday School: Maria Mukasa 

Wednesday, December 12: Celebration of Wholeness and Healing

  • Officiant: Hawley Todd, TSSF

Sunday, December 16: Celebration of Wholeness and Healing

  • Officiant: Hawley Todd, TSSF
  • Keyboards: Bill Jenne
  • Acolyte: Ken Lyon
  • Healing Ministers: J White, Ray Betts, Tammy Robertson, Hawley Todd, Bill Jenne
  • Lector: Tammy Robertson
  • Litany of Healing: Mary McLain
  • Offering Counter: Roger Perna & Ken Lyon
  • Usher: Wanda Miller
  • Flower Guild: Wanda Miller
  • 9am Adult Bible Study: Ken Lyon
  • 10am Sunday School: Toussaint Thrower  

Sunday, December 23: Eucharist II: Bishop's Visitation

  • Celebrant: The Right Rev. Thomas Breidenthal
  • Keyboards: Bill Jenne
  • Acolyte: Mathias Mukasa
  • Healing Minister (lead): J White
  • Chalice: Ken Lyon
  • Lector: Mary McLain
  • Prayers of the People: Toussaint Thrower
  • Offering Counters: John Thayer  & Carol Lyon
  • Usher: David Mukasa
  • Altar Guild: Carol Lyon
  • Flower Guild: Carol Lyon
  • 9am Adult Bible Study: Ken Lyon
  • 10am Sunday School: Virginia Chapel  

Monday, December 24, 7 pm: Christmas Eve Eucharist II

  • Celebrant: The Rev. Bob Hufford
  • Keyboards: Bill Jenne
  • Acolytes: Jamanuel Thrower, Toussaint Thrower
  • Healing Minister (lead): J White
  • Chalice: Wanda Miller
  • Lector: Judy Handy
  • Prayers of the People: Maria Mukasa
  • Offering Counter: Roger Perna & Bill Jenne
  • Usher: Phyllis Mukasa
  • Altar Guild: Wanda Miller
  • Flower Guild: Wanda Miller

Tuesday, December 25, 11am: Christmas Day Eucharist II

  • Celebrant: The Rev. Bob Hufford
  • Keyboards: Bill Jenne
  • Acolyte: Ken Lyon
  • Chalice: Carol Lyon
  • Lector: Ken Lyon
  • Prayers of the People: Carol Lyon
  • Offering Counters: John Thayer & Wanda Miller
  • Altar Guild: Wanda Miller
  • Flower Guild: Wanda Miller

Sunday, December 30: Eucharist II

  • Celebrant: The Rev. Susan Lehman
  • Keyboards: Bill Jenne
  • Acolyte: Jamanuel Thrower
  • Healing Minister (lead): J White
  • Chalice: Ken Lyon
  • Lector: Toussaint Thrower
  • Prayers of the People: John Thayer
  • Offering Counters: Roger Perna & Ruth Bertram
  • Usher: Mary McLain
  • Altar Guild: Carol Lyon
  • Flower Guild: Carol Lyon
  • 9am Adult Bible Study: Ken Lyon
  • 10am Sunday School: Grace Staples 



Absalom Jones You are receiving eGraceNotes because you subscribed online, or because you provided us with your email. You can unsubscribe instantly at any time using the link at the bottom of each issue.

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Ken Lyon, Editor.
Grace Episcopal Church | Phone: 513-541-2415 | 5501 Hamilton Avenue at Belmont Avenue | College Hill (Cincinnati) | OH | 45224