I hope that your Lent is going well. Last Sunday’s snow certainly put a dent in the start of the season for some folks. But if you haven’t yet delved into this forty-days-plus-Sundays preparation for Easter, you can start now! Take a look at the announcements below, especially:
- Film: “The Way” (Lent)
- Veterans’ Community Dinner (Helping Hands)
- World War I French Battlefield Presentation (Fellowship & Fun)
- Scout Sunday (Worship)
- Learning to Use Silence (Christian Practices)
Veterans Community Dinner, Feb. 24 at 5:30 pm - Vets and their families from our local community and from the V.A. in Lyons are invited for fellowship, conversation, and friendship...and a wonderful home-cooked meal in All Saints' Parish House at no charge. How can you help? Set up, clean up, serving, cooking (side dishes, salads, desserts). And please get the word out and invite any Vets you know! This ministry is a partnership with our friends in the Christian (Catholic) Community. Need to make a last-minute RSVP? Call Kerrie Stepko.
Film: “The Way” Monday, February 26, 7:00 pm in the Parish House Lower Room. Come and watch this feature film starring Martin Sheen about a man’s journey along the Camino de Santiago, the ancient pilgrimage route in Spain, as he searches for answers about his relationship with his son. Time for discussion afterwards. Sign up on the sheet in the Narthex.
Labyrinth Walk, Sunday, March 11, 3-5 pm in the Parish Hall. This is a time of prayerful walking meditation along the labyrinth (borrowed from the Community of St. John Baptist). Walk it at your own pace. There will be time for reflection and journaling. Drop in any time during the two hours. Bring your questions, your burdens, your prayer intentions for yourself and others. Sign up on the sheet in the Narthex.
Lenten Prayer Pilgrimage - On the interior walls of the Church are twelve Lent/Easter pictures. Pick up a Pilgrimage Brochure and baptismal shell from the basket in the Narthex; follow from one picture to another with the Bible passages, prayers, or silent contemplation. You are invited to do this whenever the Church is open.
FELLOWSHIP & FUN
World War I French Battlefields, Sunday, March 11, 11:15 am in the Parish Hall. Randy Gaulke will present reflections on his 6 months as a tour guide for the World War I battlefields in the Meuse-Argonne forest in France, which saw the largest numbers of American troops in the war. Come to learn more about this part of our history, during the centennial of that great conflict.
Epworth Youth Choir Tour Concert & Dinner, Tuesday, March 27, 7 pm in the Church. This high school choir from First United Methodist Church in Cuyahoga Falls, OH, will present a concert of traditional anthems by Craig Courtney, Allen Pote, Dan Forrest, and George Friederich Handel. The second half of the program is a musical by Dean Wagner called “Keeping Vigil with Jesus.” This concert is a wonderful Lenten opportunity and will appeal to kids as well as adults. Parishioners are invited to have dinner with the choir before-hand. More info coming soon.
Maundy Thursday Agapé Meal, March 29, 6 pm in the Parish House Lower Room. Agapé is the Greek word for God’s love – and the way we share it in community. We’ll gather for a simple pot-luck meal, as Jesus and his disciples did, before our worship. We’ll be sharing this meal with our brothers and sisters in the Christian (Catholic) Community. Sign up on the sheet in the Narthex. Hope to see you there!
Scout Sunday, March 4, 10 am – We’ll honor and celebrate all Cub Scouts, Boy Scouts, and Girl Scouts of our parish and our community, and to give thanks for the Scouting movement. All Scouts and adult leaders are invited to attend in uniform. Please pass the word along.
Celtic Worship with Irish music in honor of St. Patrick’s Day, Sunday, March 18, at 5:00 pm, St. Mark’s Episcopal Church, 9 E Main St., Mendham, NJ. Sponsored by the parishes of St. Mark’s, St. Bernard’s, & All Saints’. Come for peaceful evening worship.
Lenten Sunday Worship – during the more reflective and penitential season, we will use the Rite I version of our service at both 8 & 10 am. At 10 am we’ll also engage in a Lenten experiment of “Quiet Peace” in which we exchange the Peace with those closest to us, sharing God’s Peace with our neighbor, and yet keeping us in the quiet flow of worship.
Bible Study/Book Study – Wed. at 10:15 am, in the Rath House. We are reading and discussing Inwardly Digest: The Prayer Book as Guide to a Spiritual Life, by Derek Olsen. Can’t come Wed. mornings? Pick up a copy and read it on your own. The books are in the Narthex and cost $20.
Pilgrim Study Group Mondays, 7-8:30 pm in the Rath House. The next 6-week session, starting on March 5, is Church & Kingdom: “What does it mean to live as a child of the kingdom of God and follow in the way of Christ each day as a member of the Church? How does it affect our life at work as well as at home? How is the Christian faith changing us and shaping us so that we become more like Jesus?” Questions? Speak to Mother Vicki and sign up on the sheet in the Narthex.
SAVE THE DATE
Sunday, May 13 for Bishop Beckwith’s last visitation with us before his retirement.
2/26 Film: The Way Parish House, 7:00 pm
2/28 Book Study Rath House, 10:15 am
3/1 Holy Eucharist Church, 7:00 am
Junior Choir Choir Room, 5:15 pm
Adult Choir Choir Room, 7:30 pm
For a full schedule of our buildings check the website calendar www.allsaintsmillington.org.
Learning to Use Silence – There is an old saying about the way to approach a service of Christian worship:
Before the service, speak to God § During the service, let God speak to you § After the service, speak to one another.
This is still true, but why is it important? We often arrive at Church in a rush, maybe a little agitated because we’ve had cross words with our children or spouse, or because we are squeezing Church into a very busy day and our mind is more on our to-do list than on God. So taking a few minutes before the beginning of the service to let our bodies and brains settle into being in worship with others can be very helpful in making us more aware of God’s presence.
What does this look like in practice?
- Before the service starts go sit down in a pew, take time for quiet prayer, read over the Scripture lessons or Psalm, call to mind any particular people or concerns you want to bring before God, listen to the prelude, and respect the quiet for others who are praying. Leave chit-chat at the door.
- During the service there are brief silences after the readings and the sermon. Being silent together as a congregation is a skill that is valuable as we seek to hear what the Holy Spirit may be saying to you/us through the Scriptures. The exchange of the Peace is not the start of coffee hour (!), but an expression of God’s Peace we all share, having just confessed our sins and received absolution. The music at the offertory (choral anthem or instrumental piece) is a time to listen respectfully to the gift the musicians have prepared and offer on behalf of us all. Join your heart and mind to the offering being made.
- After the service, greet and speak to those around you. Linger in Church. Come to Coffee Hour. Get into a good and rich conversation. Fellowship with other Christians is important, part of the way we grow stronger in our faith.
Lenten blessings, Vicki+