Collect for Ascension Day, BCP
Dear Sisters and Brothers in Christ,
This Sunday, May 13th, the Seventh Sunday of Easter, our hymns will celebrate Jesus’s Ascension into heaven forty days after his Resurrection. We are told that Jesus appeared to his disciples as well as to many others during those precious days. Before he left them, he told his disciples to wait in Jerusalem until they were “clothed with power from on high.” We will be celebrating that event, when the Holy Spirit fell on the disciples, on Pentecost Sunday (May 20th).
This Sunday our Bishop Andrew Dietsche invites us to remember Episcopal Charities, the organization that helps to support all of the many social outreach programs offered by various churches and organizations in the Diocese of New York. There will be a special envelope for that donation in your bulletin. Please be generous. Your gifts matter!
And it is also Mother’s Day! How glorious to remember our mothers and all of those who have mothered us throughout our lives in ways that have revealed to us that love beyond our understanding. My very first spiritual director told me that I needed to learn how to be “my own best mother.” I asked what she meant, and she said, “You know, the mother that no one actually has—the one who anticipates all of your needs and gives you unconditional love all the time.” What she was telling me was that I was very hard on myself, and that until I could learn to love myself the way that God loves me, I could not really love others.
We held our first class of “Via Media” (“The Middle Way”) on Monday evening, May 7th with six people in attendance. This is a great group! It is not too late to join. If you are struggling with your faith, the Bible, doctrine, and/or the Episcopal Church, this is a safe place to find out more and ask questions. Each session includes a video, handouts and group discussion. Seven more classes will be offered on Monday nights with the next one in the Library on Monday night, May 21st from 7 – 8:30 p.m. (see below for specific dates). This is also preparation for adults who might be interested in Confirmation, Reception or Reaffirmation with Bishop Mary Glasspool in September. Please let me know if you are coming (email@example.com; 914 969 2969).
Our next big Festival Eucharist is Pentecost Sunday, May 20th. Both choirs will be singing, along with our wonderful tenor soloist Jason Slayden. Thanks to our faithful choir members who have been diligently rehearsing--the Saint John’s Children’s Choir (from 4:30 – 5:15 p.m.) and the Saint John’s Festival Choir (5:45 – 6:30 p.m.) on Wednesdays through May 16th.
As we reclaim our voice in Getty Square, we ask your continued prayers for this Congregation, for the Sharing Community, for the City of Yonkers, for Westchester County and New York State social services, and for the homeless, tourists, and residents of Yonkers. May God bless us all with new resolve, new energy, and new ideas for this wondrous city. And may we learn to love God and to love ourselves so that we too can love others!
Easter blessings and love,
The Reverend Canon Victoria Sirota