Fourth Sunday of Advent
Week Commencing 21 December 2014
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The Advent Wreath has three purple candles, reflecting the liturgical colour for Advent, with a pink candle for the Third Sunday, in a ring around a white candle. The first candle is lit on Advent Sunday; additional ones are lit, one on each Sunday, and the white one on Christmas Day.
There are several traditions about the meaning or theme of each candle. The scheme that accords best with the Principal Service Lectionary is:
Advent 1 The Patriarchs
Advent 2 The Prophets
Advent 3 John the Baptist
Advent 4 The Virgin Mary
Christmas Day The Christ
Each of the four Sundays then reminds us of those who prepared for the coming of Christ. ‘The Patriarchs’ can naturally focus on Abraham, our father in faith, and David, the ancestor in whose city Jesus was born. ‘The Prophets’ gives an opportunity to reflect on the way the birth of the Messiah was ‘foretold’. John, who proclaimed the Saviour, and Mary, who bore him in her womb, complete the picture.
The next Bible Study: the Book of Revelation!
I know that some of you have felt it too difficult in the evening to travel to the West End and that some are reluctant to cross the threshold of my apartment, so I am suggesting some changes. The Book of Revelation is weird and wonderful and tells of the glory of God. We shall resume on Tuesday, Jan 13th at 7:30pm in my apartment and continue alternate weeks. On Tuesday, February 3rd at 7pm we shall repeat the session here in the church, again on alternate weeks, same format, light refreshments and an interactive study. Studying the Scriptures is the duty of all Christians and I urge you to avail yourself of this opportunity. I would be happy to also host a further session on Wednesdays after the Eucharist for those who do not wish to venture out in the evening. Let me know please!
My Journey to St John’s Shaughnessy
My journey began almost 50 years ago when I moved to Vancouver and lived close to the Vancouver General Hospital. As a cradle Anglican brought up in the Church of England, attending church on a Sunday had always been an important part of my life, so even when young and single I attended church from time to time very often at St. John Shaughnessy.
When I got married our family moved to Tsawwassen and I became involved in the Anglican Church in that community: St. David’s. Our three children were christened there and over the years I became very involved and active in the Parish.
Once the children were older I began a journey of my own at the University of British Columbia and subsequent studies at Regent College and the Vancouver School of Theology leading to my ordination by Bishop Michael Ingham in June 2000 as a Deacon in the Anglican Church of Canada, Diocese of New Westminster, serving at the Parish of St. David, Delta.
As Clerical Secretary for Synod I had learned of the return of the Parish of St. John Shaughnessy to the Diocesan family and of the arrival of The Reverend Michael Fuller from London, UK as the priest tasked with reviving worship in the parish. I was very honoured to be asked to serve as Bishop’s Chaplain and Deacon for the service of Induction for Fr. Michael in September 2012.
The experience of that service in the beautiful church had a profound effect upon me. I felt like a moth drawn to a flame. Having recently retired from St. David’s it was appropriate for me to worship in a different parish, and of course there was only one place I knew I needed to be: St. John Shaughnessy!!
Over the past two years I have come to meet so many wonderful people and enjoy the magnificent liturgy and music which surrounds our worship every Sunday. I appreciate the warm welcome given to me, and my dog Summer, and I am honoured to be part of our congregation and do what I can to grow and enrich our parish family.
My prayer is that we may continue to draw others to our flame by sharing the love, that is so evident in our church, with our community and the wider world, as we are lead by our Lord.
St John’s - The Place Just Right
A Shaker spiritual expresses where I am and where I wish you to be during 2015:
‘Tis the gift to be simple,
‘tis the gift to be free,
‘Tis the gift to come down
where you ought to be
And when we find ourselves
in the place just right.
‘Twill be in the valley of love and delight
To turn, turn will be our delight
Till by turning, turning we come round right.
Invitation from Bishop Melissa
"The Bishop would like to invite all laity interested in having a discussion around the Diocese restarting a CURSILLO. The meeting will take place on Saturday, January 17 at St. Alban’s in Burnaby from 9:30 for a 10am start until noon. We look forward to sharing and listening to your insight, wisdom and experience. Please RSVP 604-522-4363.The Rev. Faun Harriman”
What is Cursillo? An opportunity to grow in faith and in spirituality; a deeper understanding of the teachings of Jesus and how we can serve Him; an experience of living and sharing with others in a loving and caring Christian community and realising that this can be extended into our own environment; a continuing community that gives support and encouragement to help Christians carry out their Baptismal Vows.
More ‘All change’
As I mentioned to you previously, there are a lot of changes taking place! The church hall has now been let to the Synod Office and they began their refurbishment this week. Unfortunately this means that the Trendell Lounge will be out of commission for a while. In the interim period we shall make temporary arrangements for our time of hospitality. We are currently experiencing difficulties with our somewhat antiquated telephone system and Paul Bunnell is working hard to fix this. If you are experiencing difficulties getting through to us and you have access to the internet. Please send us an email and we will call you back, or if it is a genuine emergency call on my cell ‘phone 778-788-7442, (Coffee and cookies do not constitute an emergency).
December 26th Service: St Stephen, Deacon and Martyr
Please plan to join us at 10:00am for the Holy Eucharist (said with Carols). This is an important service and lasts about 40 minutes.
Christmas at St John’s Shaughnessy
We do hope you will join with us to celebrate the Birth of our Lord & Saviour, Jesus Christ.
Our Services on Christmas Eve (24th December):
4pm Carols & The Christmas Story
(40 minutes, children friendly)
11pm Carols by Candlelight
1130pm Midnight Mass (One Hour)
Our Services on Christmas Day:
8am Holy Communion from The Prayer Book (30 minutes)
10am Sung Eucharist with Carols (One hour)
Our Services on Boxing Day to celebrate the Feast of St Stephen:
9.30 Morning Prayer (said) (20 minutes)
10am Eucharist with Carols (40 minutes)
Welcome Back Ross Bliss!
We are thrilled to have Ross back with us for the Christmas holidays, and as guest preacher today. He currently resides in Ontario where he attends seminary school.
Jesus not only gave us a prayer but in that prayer there is a model for all prayer. I am of course referring to the Lord’s Prayer.
I think most of our prayer is of the give me this, give me that and so on. However, first of all, the Lord’s Prayer teaches us to put God first, our Father holy is your name - then a request for the coming of the Kingdom - not one of power, but of love, justice, mercy and peace.
Then the prayer points us to the asking part: Thy will be done - We ask that God’s will be done in our lives and those of others. We can then ask God things for ourselves: Give us this day our daily bread - note the word daily is used, not the next day, the next week.
So, I think you all get the point. God first, others, second, myself last. Next week some forms of prayer based on the Lord’s Prayer.
Fr Michael Forshaw
Wanted: free sewing supplies for young Aboriginal woman
Did you used to spend a lot of time in front of your sewing machine? Do you have sewing supplies that you will never use again? Scissors, needles, bobbins, measuring tape, thread, pins, fabric, iron, ironing board, stitch ripper, sewing table, sewing books, etc. etc. I am helping a young Aboriginal woman start up her own home-based sewing business. She won sewing awards in high school, and would like to get back into her passion of sewing. She doesn't know it yet, but she will be receiving a brand new sewing machine for Christmas. This young lady has talent and deserves some happiness, so I hope some kind people who are down-sizing will see this posting. Please drop off at St John’s Shaughnessy, or I can pick up if you are closeby. I will make sure she receives the supplies on Christmas Day. Thank you!
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