- Published: Saturday, 19 April 2014 18:09
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Weekly Words of Wellness
April 11, 2014
"Holy Is As Holy Does"
In a few days Christians around the world will begin the observance of Holy Week. Holy Week is the week preceding the celebration of Easter and is marked by a range of sacred traditions and celebrations. Holy Week begins with Palm Sunday, continues with Maundy Thursday, Good Friday, Holy Saturday, and concludes with celebrations of the Easter Vigil and Easter Sunday. Throughout history, throughout the world, and across the many expressions of the Christian faith, there are countless variations of how Holy Week is enacted, but the one common theme of all Holy Week celebrations is that they are characterized by a wide variety of dramatic actions.
Palms are blessed. Processions occur around the church, and sometimes through neighborhoods, with some that even include live donkeys. The Gospel is proclaimed or sung with many joining in to portray different voices in the stories being read. Feet are washed. Bread is broken. Some of the faithful stay awake for all night prayer vigils. Hymns are sung. Flowers are arranged. Fires are lit. Trumpets are blown. Resurrection is proclaimed.
How long is YOUR procession?
Here are the details for the Spring Luncheon at St. Matthews. You may also print the pdf here.
[Episcopal News Service] When drought conditions worried Oklahoma City environmental groups, Ferrella March and Bishop Steven Charleston organized a gathering to pray for rain.
There was a downpour.
The Rev. Dr. Scott Stoner
"Christmas. Locally Sourced"
Locally sourced restaurants are gradually becoming my favorite places to eat. In case you are not familiar with this term, a locally sourced restaurant feature food that is produced by local farmers. These restaurants typically provide a list of the nearby farms who are supplying the food they are serving so you know exactly where your food is coming from. "Farm to table" is another phrase used to describe these restaurants because the restaurants buy directly from the farmers, getting the food from the farm to the diner's table as quickly as possible. "Eat local." Whether eating at a restaurant or shopping at a grocery or other store, this motto sums up the commitment to support the local community and to have a close relationship with those that feed us.
I like at least two things about locally sourced restaurants. I like that the food is healthy, fresh, whole, and delicious. Although the diner may have fewer options to choose from on the menu of such a restaurant, the freshness and quality of the food more than make up for this. The other thing I like about eating at these restaurants is that I know that I am supporting local farmers, knowing if I wanted to visit one of their farm that the farmers would most likely welcome me, and be happy and proud to show me what they do. These reasons together serve to create a different dining experience with better taste and a different feel than if instead my food was coming from some distant, nameless source.
The Dominican Development Group] On a hot, humid day in mid-June 2013 a group of intrepid Episcopalian missioners from Michigan arrived in the Dominican Republic to continue the building of the San Simon church in San Marcos. An amazing discovery awaited one of the missioners, Tammy Mazure, for she found a small, 6-8 weeks old, approximately 5 pounds puppy, dehydrated, malnourished and with a healed dislocated hip under a pile of discarded wood. Had the puppy been abandoned there or had she sought sanctuary? The rest of the story: Tammy immediately took the puppy under her wing and bought her dry puppy food and made sure she got adequate water. However, Tammy was scheduled to leave several days later so when the next group of 8 missioners arrived from Michigan, she sought out Norma York-Bremer and Janine Dekker to ask if they would continue caring for her, which of course they agreed to do. On the Monday of their mission, Padre Bienvenido advised that he would be unable to be at the site the following morning for morning prayer, but that Deacon Lourdes would be there instead. Nobody realized at that time what an impact this change would have on the puppy. Norma and Janine realized that their group was possibly the last missioner group until the following January and Janine bemoaned this fact to Deacon Lourdes during a waterbreak at which time she said “Mio esposo esta medico veterinario” and the next day she brought her husband, Hector, to the site. Norma indicated the many things that would need to be done before even thinking of bringing the puppy back (a long shot at that time). Hector answered to each item “no problemo” and so he took the puppy with him.
There are many on-line sites that can provide rich content for your spiritual life! Through periodic e-spirituality articles on this website, we will draw attention to those that you, our readers, find to be the best. Please share your thoughts through the Contact Us button on the upper right of the homepage.
d365.org is a devotional site supported by an ecumenical partnership with the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship and the Presbyterian Church USA and The Episcopal Church.
Each daily devotion follows a Pause, Listen, Think, Pray, and Go path and provides an opportunity for comment and prayer requests.
The d365 daily devotional site is produced by Passport, Inc. Passport's seasonal devotional series, Following the Star and Journey to the Cross, help readers journey through Advent and Lent. A third series, Back2School, recognizes the significant transition between summer and fall in the lives of students and offers encouragement and wisdom from scripture. These series are written especially for students and seek to provide reflections on themes that impact our faith journey. We hope that in the midst of busy or boring days, these sites will create a quiet space in your life for contemplation and prayer.
Have you ever accomplished or created something significant in a short period of time? While there are exceptions to everything, I would guess that most of us would answer this question negatively. It takes time and patience to create a life of meaning. It takes time and patience to create a trusting, caring friendship, marriage, or family. It takes time and patience to create a new initiative in your community. It takes time and patience to create a spiritual life. It takes time and patience to create meaningful work. It takes time and patience to create physical wellness. It takes time and patience to create a life of giving and service to others.
No one would ever confuse me with a person who is good at practicing patience, but as I get older, I am working on it. It takes time to learn the practice of patience! Too often I want to see immediate fruit from some effort I am making, whether it be getting in better shape, strengthening a relationship in my life, or starting a new project in my work. Even in my prayer life I can find myself acting like a line from an old joke: "Lord, please give me patience, and please give it to me now!"
Sybil MacBeth is the author of Praying in Color, Praying in Black & White: a hands on practice for men, Praying in Color: Kids edition and Rezando En Colores. MacBeth is a doodler, dancer, and former community college math professor and the spouse, of Andy, an Episcopal priest. Her website is here and she blogs here.
She posted this poem, Prayer as Manicure on her website some time ago and we share it with you.
PRAYER AS MANICURE
The polish goes everywhere
Slides down my pinky,
Spreads like measles,
Drops in a blob
On the nearest drycleanable surface.
Like my prayer life:
Words run together
In a bright sticky mess:
Syllables smudge, collide,
Drop in a blob
On the nearest excuse for a dog.
Before they’re even dry,
I’m waving new ones in the air
Better start over:
The brush splays bristles
In unladylike manner
Flings an embarrassment
Of bright spots,
Incites a barrage of red hot expletives.
Yet another botched makeover.
Sybil MacBeth © 2003
Today the church remembers Teresa of Avila, Nun, 1582.
Undisciplined mystics sometimes become so enthralled in their rapturous experiences, so heavenly minded, that they are of no earthly use. A sterling example of a more orthodox and incarnational mystic piety is found in Teresa of Avila, a Spanish contemplative who founded a major religious order (the Discalced Carmelites), wrote a number of excellent books, and engaged in countless charitable activities and in theological dialogue with some of the best minds of her day.Although a deeply spiritual and intuitive person, she resisted the temptation to dismiss the rational, analytical, and practical. Her powerful mystic experiences with God led her to love, not reject, humankind, and to hope, not despair, concerning human history. Her confidence in God's love and grace for all gave her a sparkling optimism and good humor which enabled her to minister to the heirs of the Renaissance in ways that the more dour and world-rejecting theologians of her day could not. Her brutally honest and deeply insightful autobiographical writings caused Frederich Heiler to call her a modern "psychologist among the saints." Her openness to change and her reforming spirit raised the suspicions of the Inquisition and she found herself the center of much controversy.Her most famous pupil was John of the Cross. Her most famous book is The Interior Castle.Give us a discerning mind so that we can see your vision and know your will. Amen.
O God, by your Holy Spirit you moved Teresa of Avila to manifest to your Church the way of perfection: Grant us, we pray, to be nourished by her excellent teaching, and enkindle within us a keen and unquenchable longing for true holiness; through Jesus Christ, the joy of loving hearts, who with you and the Holy Spirit lives and reigns, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.
New Home for Craine House
The John P. Craine House, a place of hope and justice for female offenders, was begun by Bishop John P. Craine and the Rev. Jackie Means of our diocese. Craine House is a non-profit organization in its 36th year as a unique, court-appointed alternative sentencing, work-release program dedicated to serving non-violent female offenders with pre-school children. At Craine House, women and their children live with dignity in a safe, structured, supportive environment.
Learn about the history and services at Craine House here.