Ice on the River, Epiphany 2, Jan 14, 2018
Jan. 17 – 11:00am – Join here at 10:30am for gathering. Meeting ID: 758 2547 5827 Passcode: 5Lw6DL
Jan. 20 – 3:00pm – 6pm – Village Harvest distribution
If you would like to volunteer, please email Catherine or call (540) 809-7489. Pack bags for distribution 1-3PM Deliver food to client’s cars 3-5PM.
Jan. 24 – Third Sunday after the Epiphany
Jan. 24 – 11:00am – Join here at 10:30am for gathering – service starts at 11am Meeting ID 834 7356 6532 Password 748475
Epiphany – Jan 6 until Lent begins Feb. 17, 2021
Adoration of the Magi – Bartholomäus Zeitblom (c. 1450 – c. 1519)
The English word "Epiphany" comes from the Greek word epiphaneia, which means "appearing" or "revealing." Epiphany focuses on God’s self-revelation in Christ.
Epiphany celebrates the twelfth day of Christmas, the coming of the Magi to give homage to God’s Beloved Child.
The Epiphany celebration remembers the three miracles that manifest the divinity of Christ. The celebration originated in the Eastern Church in AD 361, beginning as a commemoration of the birth of Christ. Later, additional meanings were added – the visit of the three Magi, Christ’s baptism in the Jordan River with the voice from heaven that identifies Jesus as God’s son, and his first miracle at the wedding in Cana. These three events are central to the definition of Epiphany, and its meaning is drawn from these occurrences.
Confession of St. Peter – “Who do you say I am?”
"St. Peter"- Peter P. Rubens
This is not a confession of the church but relates to Peter, the Apostler !
Jesus went to the predominately pagan region of Caesarea Philipp. Here is the Mark reading (Mark 8:27-30) ” Jesus went on with his disciples to the villages of Caesarea Philippi; and on the way he asked his disciples, “Who do people say that I am?” And they answered him, “John the Baptist; and others, Elijah; and still others, one of the prophets.” He asked them, “But who do you say that I am?” Peter answered him, “You are the Messiah.” And he sternly ordered them not to tell anyone about him.” Peter nailed it at this time
A sermon in August, 2014 was all about Peter. Here’s the link
Jan 18 is the day appointed for this event. The collect – "Almighty Father, who inspired Simon Peter, first among the apostles, to confess Jesus as Messiah and Son of the living God: Keep your Church steadfast upon the rock of this faith, so that in unity and peace we may proclaim the one truth and follow the one Lord, our Savior Jesus Christ; who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen. "
In Pursuit of Peter
The first 5 minutes are the most important. You are there at the same place where the confession occurred.
Read the Gospel of Mark during Epiphany
The Good Book Club is an invitation to all Episcopalians to join in reading the Gospel of Mark during Epiphany 2021. Mark is the Gospel in Year B which will be a part of us in 2021. Episcopalians will read a section every day through the Epiphany season. Most of the readings are 20 verses or less.
1. There is also a free ChurchNext course to go along with it –
Mark opens with words from the prophet Isaiah: “See, I am sending my messenger ahead of you,” and indeed the gospel itself serves as a messenger for the life and ministry of Jesus. Written around 65-75, Mark proclaims the good news that Jesus is the messiah and Son of God.
Celebrating the Legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King on his birthday, Jan. 18
“Today I find myself a long way from you and the children. I am at the State Prison in Reidsville which is about 230 miles from Atlanta. They picked me up from the DeKalb jail about 4 ’0 clock this morning. I know this whole experience is very difficult for you to adjust to, especially in your condition of pregnancy, but as I said to you yesterday this is the cross that we must bear for the freedom of our people. So I urge you to be strong in faith, and this will in turn strengthen me. I can assure you that it is extremely difficult for me to think of being away from you and my Yoki and Marty for four months, but I am asking God hourly to give me the power of endurance. I have the faith to believe that this excessive suffering that is now coming to our family will in some little way serve to make Atlanta a better city, Georgia a better state, and America a better country. Just how I do not yet know, but I have faith to believe it will. If I am correct then our suffering is not in vain.”
-An excerpt from a letter from Dr. King to Coretta King -October 26, 1960
Week of Prayer for Christian Unity Jan 18-25, 2021
Theme for 2021:
"Abide in my love and you shall bear much fruit”, is based on John 15:1-17 “To abide in his love reminds us that we live in a community celebrating our gift of unity."
At least once a year, Christians are reminded of Jesus’ prayer for his disciples that “they may be one so that the world may believe” (see John 17.21). Hearts are touched and Christians come together to pray for their unity. Congregations and parishes all over the world exchange preachers or arrange special ecumenical celebrations and prayer services. The event that touches off this special experience is the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity.
Traditionally the week of prayer is celebrated between 18-25 January, between the feasts of St Peter and St Paul.
Epiphany 3, Year B Lectionary Sunday, Jan. 24, 2021
I.Theme – Discipleship and change
"Christ Calling the Apostles Peter and Andrew" -Duccio, di Buoninsegna, d. 1319
The lectionary readings are here or individually:
By Bruce Epperly – Process and Faith
"Today’s lectionary readings highlight change – divine and human. Many “orthodox” people see God as impassible – any possibility of change taints divine purity and holiness. What makes God is the absolute discontinuity between God and us: we wither and perish but God endures, always complete in knowledge and power. Before the earth was created, God determined everything without our consultation. Even our turning from evil – or refusal to follow God’s path – is somehow known in advance and since God’s knowledge is always active, determined in advance. Any change on God’s part, such “orthodoxy” maintains, would put in doubt God’s fidelity. But, such changeless visions of God are bought at a price – God is aloof from our world, insensitive to our pain, and – much worse – the likely source of the evils we experience.
"Jonah no doubt expected hell-fire and brimstone to rain down on Nineveh. He preached doom and gloom as the natural – or divinely ordained – consequence of their wickedness. I suspect Jonah believed that humans don’t change – once evil always evil, once corrupt always corrupt. Although the scripture telescopes this ancient story, the only words from Jonah’s mouth are “Forty days more and Nineveh shall be overthrown.” Repentance and moral reformation aren’t even part of his message. But, the people change their ways, perhaps hoping to avert disaster. Regardless of their motivation, they are saved. As the story goes, because they change, “God changed God’s mind” and the city was spared.
"Two key theological points emerge. First, this passage describes the vision of a changing God, who not only calls but also responds. In the dance of relationship, when we change, God also changes. God is not bound by God’s past eternal or temporal decisions. God is free to act creatively in relationship to our creativity. Second, this vision begs the question: does God choose to destroy cities and nations, or is there a dynamic synergy of acts and consequences which leads to certain results to which even God must respond? The philosopher Alfred North Whitehead takes the latter viewpoint: God’s aim or vision for each moment is the “best for that impasse.”
"Always contextual, God’s movements in our lives respect our autonomy. Just as unbelief in Jesus’ hometown limits his healing power – he could no great work, but some small acts of transformation – our thoughts and actions shape and may limit the extent of God’s work in the world. Sometimes the best God can do in certain situations is to attempt to place boundaries on pain and evil-doing, rather than achieving something of great beauty. God never gives up – in relationship to Nineveh or us – but must respond creatively to our actions.
"The Psalm invites us to contemplate God’s faithfulness and loving power. When we pause amid the storm and stress of life, we will see a pattern of divine fidelity. The affairs of life are seen for what they are – temporary in light of God’s enduring love. This perspective enables us to be active in the world without becoming overly attached to the results of our actions. This enables us to be committed to justice without polarizing and to seek transformation without succumbing to the culture wars.
"The passage from I Corinthians highlights the perpetual perishing character of life. All flesh is grass. Only God endures. Accordingly, we must take our commitments seriously but not urgently. The key to a spiritually centered life is to affirm our current commitments, yet experience freedom in relationship to them. Relationships change and grow, mourning passes, possessions fade away, and rejoicing turns to sorrow. There is something Taoist about Paul’s words. When we experience the flow of life without clinging to what eventually passes, we experience the peace that passes all understanding.
"The Gospel reading describes Jesus’ inaugural message. “The realm of God has come near; repent and believe in the good news.” Divine intimacy challenges us to change. In changing our ways, we open the door to hearing the good news. We believe ourselves into transformed actions and we act our way into transformed beliefs. The good news is that you can be changed – as Paul asserts in Romans 12:2, “be not conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind.”
"Mark began his gospel with "the good news of Jesus the Christ, the Son of God," and now we hear Jesus’ version of just what that Good News is. The first disciples abandon their jobs and homes, their security to follow him.
"In the Epiphany season of divine revealing, we challenged to ask: Where do we need to be transformed? What changes do we and our institutions need to make to be faithful to God? We can change and in our changing, we are responding to God and enable God to do new and innovating things in our lives and the world."
How do we follow Jesus ? (Mark 1:14-20)
by David Lose, president of Lutheran Theological Seminary at Philadelphia
"So perhaps Mark’s message to those reading back in the first century – as well as to those of us following along in the twenty-first – was more about following Jesus in general than it was about any following him only by leaving everything to proclaim the coming kingdom of God. Except that we can never follow “in general.”
"We follow him in particular and distinct ways that may or may not be like the first disciples. And that, I think, is the point. Perhaps we follow by becoming a teacher. Perhaps we follow by volunteering at the senior center. Perhaps we follow by looking out for those in our schools who always seem on the outside and invite them in. Perhaps we follow by doing a job we loathe as best we can to help others. Perhaps we follow by doing a job we hate but contributes to supporting our family and helping others. Perhaps we follow by being generous with our wealth and with our time. Perhaps we follow by listening to those around us and responding with encouragement and care. Perhaps we follow by caring for an aging parent, or special needs child, or someone else who needs our care. Perhaps we follow by….
Discovering New Worlds: Mark 1:14
Here in v14 is the Man and his Message – his Gospel. This is a summary statement of Jesus’ message: “The time is fulfilled and the Kingdom of God has drawn near. Repent and believe in the Good News!”
We have already been given strong hints that the Kingdom of God is something that is going to cause huge ructions. This is a message of confrontation between the powers of Imperial Rome and the religious authority of the Temple and its leaders. This isn’t a message that will be received with the enthusiasm that Nineveh showed! The message of the Kingdom will set Jesus and those who respond on a collision course with those who will oppose it. It is the beginning of a life and death struggle.
This is not a message to be assimilated quietly and easily. To “repent and believe” requires a fundamental reorientation and the embracing of a whole new set of values and norms. It will change forever the way in which those who respond – the disciples – will view the world and live in it. It is a call to take up the Struggle against the Strong Man and all the powers that hold the world and its people captive – demons, sickness, hatred, discrimination, political and religious authorities.
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4. Server Schedule January, 2021
10. Recent Services:
Christmas 1, Dec. 27, 2020 Readings and Prayers, Christmas 1, Dec. 27, 2020
Christmas 2, Jan. 3 Readings and Prayers, Christmas 2, Jan. 3
Epiphany 1, Jan. 10 Readings and Prayers, Epiphany 1, Jan. 10
Block Print by Mike Newman
3-Minute Retreats invite you to take a short prayer break right at your computer. Spend some quiet time reflecting on a Scripture passage.
Knowing that not everyone prays at the same pace, you have control over the pace of the retreat. After each screen, a Continue button will appear. Click it when you are ready to move on. If you are new to online prayer, the basic timing of the screens will guide you through the experience.
Daily meditations in words and music.
Your daily prayer online, since 1999
“We invite you to make a ‘Sacred Space’ in your day, praying here and now, as you visit our website, with the help of scripture chosen every day and on-screen guidance.”
Saints of the Week, – Jan. 17, 2021 – Jan. 24, 2021
|Antony, Abbot in Egypt, 356|
|The Confession of Saint Peter the Apostle|
|Wulfstan, Bishop of Worcester, 1095|
|Fabian, Bishop and Martyr of Rome, 250|
|Agnes [& Cecilia], Martyrs at Rome, 304 & c.230|
|Vincent, Deacon of Saragossa, and Martyr, 304|
|Phillips Brooks, Bishop of Massachusetts, 1893|
|Florence Li Tim-Oi, 1992|