Thursday, November 14, 2019

From Mother Vicki

Collect for the 23rd Sunday after Pentecost
Blessed Lord, who caused all holy Scriptures to be written for our learning: Grant us so to hear them, read, mark, learn, and inwardly digest them, that we may embrace and ever hold fast the blessed hope of everlasting life, which you have given us in our Savior Jesus Christ; who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

Dear Sisters and Brothers in Christ,

This particular Collect dates from 1549 and was included in the very First Prayer Book of Edward VI, the son of Henry VIII.  Originally the Collect for the second Sunday of Advent (and included as such in the 1928 Prayer Book), this prayer encourages us to study the holy Scriptures and to “hear”, “read, mark, learn and inwardly digest them.”

In the Ordination Services for all three Orders (Bishop, Priest and Deacon), a vow is taken that not only states that the Bishop-elect or the Ordinand engages “to conform to the doctrine, discipline, and worship of The Episcopal Church,” but also that this person believes “the Holy Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments to be the Word of God, and to contain all things necessary to salvation.” The reiteration of this strong statement about the importance of scripture and of its intense study is a reminder of how vital that continuing study is to our faith and hope in our Savior Jesus Christ.  Presiding Bishop Michael Curry, who spoke at the Episcopal Charities Dinner on Tuesday night, reminded us that Jesus touched his little band of disciples in an extraordinary way, transforming them into the “Beloved Community.”  Through Jesus’s words, presence, life, death and resurrection which we read about in holy Scripture we too are invited to join one of the most revolutionary movements in human history.  We too can be part of this Beloved Community.

Our last Farmers’ Market is next Thursday, November 21.  Don’t forget to join us, and especially to check out the used clothing and kitchen goods in our Thrift Store.

Presiding Bishop Curry said as part of the Opening Remarks at the 79th General Convention of the Episcopal Church on July 4, 2018:
“This Jesus Movement goes way back.  Biblical scholars have long described the earliest days of Christianity.  Its earliest origins as a Jesus Movement.  As people who gathered around Jesus of Nazareth, who listened to his teachings…. looked at his life, who imbibed his spirit, and his spirit began to become their spirit – that’s what we call Pentecost. 

His spirit became their spirit.  They found themselves loving the way Jesus loves, giving the way Jesus gives, forgiving the way Jesus forgives, doing justice, loving mercy, walking humbly with God just like Jesus! And folk watched them and saw them and said, “Y’all look like little Christs.” And they nicknamed them Christians.

My brothers and sisters, we are not just the Episcopal Church. We are the Episcopal branch of the Jesus Movement.  That’s who we are.  And that’s what the world is pleading and hungering for us to be.” 

May we have the courage to be part of the Jesus Movement, part of the Beloved Community.
In Christ and with love,
The Rev. Canon Victoria R. Sirota

No comments: