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The Clergy Corner
Wednesday is a day when we look both backward and forward. As we look backward to the events of last weekend, I ask you to continue in prayer for our country. As disciples of Jesus Christ, we can make no peace with those who disrespect and destroy God's Creation - which includes all people of every race and nation. Pray that we may each know and do our own work against hatred and violence. And please read Dean Hollerith's excellent words in "Thoughts to Ponder."
As we look forward, it's hard to imagine that in just a few weeks the Second Best Sale will be over and it will be September. Holy Spirit will celebrate two special Sundays in September, and I want to be sure you know about them.
First it's important for you to know that we are changing our worship calendar so Holy Eucharist will be the 2nd and 4th Sundays in September, and Morning Prayer will be the 1st and 3rd. These changes are for
Sunday, September 10 will be our "Literacy Sunday." This morning we will celebrate Holy Eucharist with a special blessing for our Explore & Soar Reading Club staff, volunteers, and everyone whose life is touched by this ministry. The Reading Club enables children who are struggling with reading to get extra practice and meet their grade level objectives. That's a formal way of saying that it opens children up to the amazing potential of a good book to help them discover a different world. After church (time TBD) we will also dedicate the "Little Free Library" we steward for the community.
Our faith practices include the reading of Holy Scripture and cultivating a relationship with God through common prayer; both require literacy in the church. We are happy to set aside a Sunday to honor our work for literacy in our community as well.
Sunday, September 24 we will host the Rev. Elizabeth DeRuff, a national pioneer in agriculture and ministry whose heirloom wheat project is coming to Plainsong Farm. The Rev. DeRuff's ministry supplied all the communion bread for General Convention 2015, which is where she and I met. Her communion bread was heavenly, and the way she blends an understanding of care of creation, communion, and sustainable agriculture is inspiring. Got chef friends? Invite them to church to meet her! She also will be leading a Community Planting Day at Plainsong Farm the day before (Saturday, September 23) and a Farm to Altar Table Workshop on Sunday afternoon. (
Those details are here.)
In between our special Sundays I will be in North Carolina for a week speaking first at a retreat and then to a seminary. When I originally accepted the call to serve Holy Spirit, I had no idea the farm ministry would involve travel. But we have been blessed with national interest in our work and in order to enable its growth I have to be on the road. Father Mike Fedewa has agreed to serve as emergency pastoral care provider in my absence. As we look toward the fall and our mutual ministry evaluation, please consider if my travel is an issue for the church. You will hear more about the process of mutual ministry evaluations in the months to come.
It is as always a privilege to serve you. Sign up to work at the Second Best Sale and look forward to September with me!
For too long, too many Americans have falsely believed that the evil of racism is largely a thing of the past. We have failed to take seriously the cancer of white supremacy that lurks beneath the surface of our collective life. Today, in Charlottesville, that ugliness exploded into public view, and we must not look away.
Let me be perfectly clear: Violence and extremism in the guise of racial identity or racial pride are as sinful and twisted as violence and extremism committed in the name of God. The tragic events in Charlottesville today, and the hatred that fueled them, grieve the heart of God. All of us need to repent of the racism that still flourishes in our nation.
Together, we join with all people of conscience and goodwill to pray, in the words of our Prayer Book, that God would “take away the arrogance and hatred which infect our hearts; break down the walls that separate us; unite us in bonds of love; and work through our struggle and confusion to accomplish your purposes on earth.”
We will pray for the victims of this tragedy; for God to soften the hearts of those blinded by racial hatred; and for all Americans to find the courage and strength to do the hard work of repairing the racial divisions among us.
~Very Rev. Randolph Marshall Hollerith, dean of Washington National Cathedral
Eucharist will be available on the 1st, 3rd & 5th Sundays of each month.
All other Sundays will be Morning Prayer service.
Will you serve as a crucifer or acolyte? We need more people to serve as crucifers (carries the cross into the church) or acolytes (serves at the altar with Mtr. Nurya). Please prayerfully consider helping in either of these ways. If you are not sure what is involved, don't worry, you can serve as a "trainee" for a few months. Please see Mary M. if you are interested.
Old cell phones: do you have a cell phone you don't need or want? Donate it to HopeLine® from Verizon Wireless, which helps support victims and survivors of domestic violence while ensuring that phones are reused in an environmentally responsible way. Any phone from any provider is accepted. Thru the end of August, we have a box in the office to collect phones. PLEASE make sure you erase any data (such as speed dial numbers) from the phone and disconnect the phone’s wireless service before donating.
Donation deadline for the Second Best Sale has passed! If you are looking for someplace to donate your gently used goods, we suggest North Kent Connect's new store, which serves the same people our food pantry serves: