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Sunday, May 1, 2016

THE SIXTH SUNDAY OF EASTER

The Sixth Sunday of Easter is often called Rogation Sunday, as it precedes the three rogation days that always fall on the Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday before Ascension Day. You'll notice hints of prepartion for the rogation days in the morning services today, when at times there is an emphasis on God our creator and provider. For example, pay attention to the words of the psalm and the hymns. See also the words of the collect, which, through petition and gratitude, approaches God as the provider of all things.

Among the sermons in the archive that can help you understand God as creator and provider, consider these:

The Father Almighty, Maker of Heaven and Earth (2011) by Fr Spurlock
On Providence (2010) by Fr Austin
Bread and Life, Freedom and Friendship (2009) by Fr Austin
All Ours as Gift (2008) by Fr Austin
Food in the Wilderness (2003) by Fr Mead

Collect:

O God, who hast prepared for those who love thee such good things as pass man’s understanding: Pour into our hearts such love toward thee, that we, loving thee in all things and above all things, may obtain thy promises, which exceed all that we can desire; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

8:00 am, Chantry Chapel
9:00 am, High Altar
Sung by the Junior Choristers.
11:00 am, High Altar
Sung by the Saint Thomas Choir of Men and Boys. Sermon by Fr Turner.
4:00 pm, High Altar
Sung by the Saint Thomas Choir of Men and Boys. We welcome particpants in the 43rd Annual Choirmasters Conference. Our guest conductor this year is Andrew Nethsingha. Sermon by Fr Spurlock (read by Fr Daniels).

Monday, May 2, 2016

SAINT PHILIP & SAINT JAMES

Collect:

Almighty God, who didst give to thine apostles Philip and James grace and strength to bear witness to the truth: Grant that we, being mindful of their victory of faith, may glorify in life and death the Name of our Lord Jesus Christ; who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

8:00 am, Chantry Chapel
12:10 pm, Chantry Chapel
5:30 pm, High Altar
Sung by the Saint Thomas Choir of Men and Boys. We welcome particpants in the 43rd Annual Choirmasters Conference. Our guest conductor this year is Andrew Nethsingha.
6:15 pm, High Altar

Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Rogation Tuesday

To learn about Rogation Days, consider listening to this Rector's Weekly Message from 2011.

That we should remember to be thankful for, and good stewards of, the earth on these three days before Ascension Day makes a good deal of sense. After all, on Ascension Day we commemorate Christ's ascent to the right hand of the Father, thereby leaving us to go forth throughout the world, and (among other things) to care for the world.

So Rogation Days remind us of our placement in time and space, and prepare us for the physical absence of Christ, who will come again, but who for the present moment is not with us in the way he once was. He has sent the Comforter to guide us in our work, and Christ remains with in the Eucharist, and the Father provides all we need (and the Father and Christ remain accessible to us through prayer). Yet, the work we have been given is for us to do, and this work is very much tied to our lives as physical creatures in time and space. Therefore, by reminding us of our earthly responsibilities, Ascension Day, and these Rogation Days leading up to Ascension Day, ground us.

Collect:

Almighty God, whose Son Jesus Christ in his earthly life shared our toil and hallowed our labor: Be present with thy people where they work; make those who carry on the industries and commerce of this land responsive to thy
will; and give to us all a pride in what we do, and a just return for our labor; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with thee, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

8:00 am, Chantry Chapel
12:10 pm, Chantry Chapel
This Mass includes a healing service of Holy Unction.
5:30 pm, High Altar
Sung by the Saint Thomas Choir of Men and Boys. We welcome particpants in the 43rd Annual Choirmasters Conference. Our guest conductor this year is Andrew Nethsingha.
6:15 pm, High Altar

Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Rogation Wednesday

To learn about Rogation Days, consider listening to this Rector's Weekly Message from 2011.

That we should remember to be thankful for, and good stewards of, the earth on these three days before Ascension Day makes a good deal of sense. After all, on Ascension Day we commemorate Christ's ascent to the right hand of the Father, thereby leaving us to go forth throughout the world, and (among other things) to care for the world.

So Rogation Days remind us of our placement in time and space, and prepare us for the physical absence of Christ, who will come again, but who for the present moment is not with us in the way he once was. He has sent the Comforter to guide us in our work, and Christ remains with in the Eucharist, and the Father provides all we need, the Father and Christ remain accessible to us through prayer. Yet, the work we have been given is for us to do, and it is very much tied to our lives as physical creatures in time and space. Therefore, Ascension Day, and these Rogation Days leading up to Ascension Day, ground us.

Collect:

O merciful Creator, whose hand is open wide to satisfy the needs of every living creature: Make us, we beseech thee, ever thankful for thy loving providence; and grant that we, remembering the account that we must one day give, may be faithful stewards of thy bounty; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who with thee and the Holy Spirit liveth and reigneth, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

8:00 am, Chantry Chapel
12:10 pm, Chantry Chapel
5:30 pm, High Altar
Sung by the Gentlemen of the Choir.
6:15 pm, High Altar

Thursday, May 5, 2016

ASCENSION DAY

As you contemplate the ascension, consider these sermons:

He Ascended into Heaven (2011) by Fr Spurlock
Ascension Day Greetings (2010) by Fr Mead
A Presence within an Absence (2008) by Fr Austin
The Ascension, the Church, and the World (2006) by Fr Austin
The Ascension: Christ Fills All Things (2002) by Fr Mead

Collect:

Grant, we beseech thee, Almighty God, that like as we do believe thy only-begotten Son our Lord Jesus Christ to have ascended into the heavens, so we may also in heart and mind thither ascend, and with him continually dwell; who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Ghost, one God, world without end. Amen.

8:00 am, Chantry Chapel
12:10 pm, Chantry Chapel
5:30 pm – 6:30 pm, High Altar
Sung by the Saint Thomas Choir of Men and Boys.

Friday, May 6, 2016

8:00 am, Chantry Chapel
12:10 pm, Chantry Chapel
5:30 pm, Chantry Chapel

Saturday, May 7, 2016

12:10 pm, Chantry Chapel

Sunday, May 8, 2016

THE SEVENTH SUNDAY OF EASTER

The Seventh Sunday of Easter is also called The Sunday after Ascension Day. Because Ascension Day is always the 40th Day of Easter and Pentecost is always the 50th Day, The Sunday after Ascension Day is always the Sunday preceding the Day of Pentecost.

These last 10 days of Easter are called Ascensiontide, the period of time after Christ ascended to the Father, yet before the coming of the Spirit on the Day of Pentecost. To the contemporaries of Christ, it was therefore a time of waiting.

Collect:

O God, the King of glory, who hast exalted thine only Son Jesus Christ with great triumph unto thy kingdom in heaven: We beseech thee, leave us not comfortless, but send to us thine Holy Ghost to comfort us, and exalt us unto the same place whither our Savior Christ is gone before; who liveth and reigneth with thee and the same Holy Ghost, one God, world without end. Amen.

8:00 am, Chantry Chapel
9:00 am, High Altar
Sung by the Junior Choristers.
11:00 am, High Altar
Sung by the Saint Thomas Choir of Men and Boys. Sermon by Fr Spurlock.
4:00 pm, High Altar
Sung by the Saint Thomas Choir of Men and Boys. Sermon by Fr Austin.

Monday, May 9, 2016

Gregory of Nazianzus

Bishop of Constantinople
d.389

Lesser Feasts and Fasts summarizes the life of this great theologian as follows:

Gregory of Nazianzus, one of the Cappadocian Fathers, loved God, the art of letters, and the human race — in that order. He was born about 330 in Nazianzus in Cappadocia (now Turkey), the son of a local bishop. He studied rhetoric in Athens with his friend Basil of Caesarea, and Julian, later to be the apostate emperor. Gregory, together with Basil, compiled an anthology of Origen’s works, The Philokalia. Two years later, he returned to his home, a town then rent by heresies and schism. His defense of his father’s orthodoxy in the face of a violent mob brought peace to the town and prominence to Gregory.

In 361, against his will, Gregory was ordained presbyter, and settled down to live an austere, priestly life. He was not to have peace for long. Basil, in his fight against the Arian Emperor Valens, compelled Gregory to become Bishop of Sasima. According to Gregory, it was “a detestable little place without water or grass or any mark of civilization.” He felt, he said, like “a bone flung to the dogs.” His friendship with Basil suffered a severe break. 

Deaths in his family, and that of his estranged friend Basil, brought Gregory himself to the point of death. He withdrew for healing. In 379, Gregory moved to Constantinople, a new man and no longer in despair. He appeared as one afire with the love of God. His fame as a theologian rests on five sermons he delivered during this period on the doctrine of the Trinity. They are marked by clarity, strength, and a charming gaiety.

The next year, the new Emperor Theodosius entered Constantinople, and expelled its Arian bishop and clergy. Then, on a rainy day, the crowds in the Great Church of Hagia Sophia acclaimed Gregory bishop, after a ray of sunlight suddenly shone on him. 

Power and position meant nothing to Gregory. After the Ecumenical Council of 381, he retired to Nazianzus where he died in 389. Among the Fathers of the Church, he alone is known as “The Divine,” “The Theologian.”

Collect:

Almighty God, who hast revealed to thy Church thine eternal Being of glorious majesty and perfect love as one God in Trinity of Persons: Give us grace that, like thy bishop Gregory of Nazianzus, we may continue steadfast in the confession of this faith, and constant in our worship of thee, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit; who livest and reignest for ever and ever. Amen.

8:00 am, Chantry Chapel
12:10 pm, Chantry Chapel
5:30 pm, Chantry Chapel