Sixth Sunday after Pentecost
Week Commencing 20th July 2014
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The Gospel for this Sunday Matthew 13; 24 -43.
The parable of the wheat and tares explained.
Last week we look at the parable of sower and the prolific amount of seed that he had to sow, hence the extravagance of his throwing over all types of soil. The imperative was to get the seed (Good News) out into the field as represented by our world. Today however we see one of the results, others will try to choke the faith with distractions, temptations, wickedness and disinterest as represented by the tares (weeds). Again explanation is sought from Jesus and received, the judgement of God is invoked: at the end of the day injustice will be dealt with by the justice of God. Subtext: make sure you are the wheat and not the tares! For even if you are choked by the sins of others, God’s love and mercy will prevail.
Music this Week
Cesar Franck was born in Liège, Belgium. His father had ambitions for him to become a concert pianist, and he studied at the conservatoire in Liège before going to the Paris Conservatoire in 1837. Upon leaving in 1842, he briefly returned to Belgium but went back to Paris in 1844 and remained there for the rest of his life. Franck was a fine pianist and made concert tours in his early years, but he made his living at the organ, becoming organist of Sainte-Clotilde in 1858, a position he held for life. From 1872 to his death he was organ professor at the Paris Conservatoire. As an organist he was particularly noted for his skill in improvisation, and it is on the basis of only twelve major organ works that Franck is considered by many the greatest organ composer after J.
Panis Angelicus was written in 1872 for tenor voice, organ, harp, cello and double bass. Music was an act of faith for Franck, and this piece is a reserved religious meditation.
What is tithing all about?
OK So we are having a stewardship campaign to encourage us all to give more, yes? Well, yes and no! Like all organisations we need money to continue the work we have begun, but tithing is not what that’s about. Tithing (giving a tenth of one’s income) is a firmly established biblical principle.
Although the Church teaches that offering some form of material support to the Church is obligatory for all Christians, it doesn't specify what percent of one's income should be given, it merely uses the Old Testament guideline of 10%. Remember, tithing was an Old Testament obligation that was incumbent on the Jews under the Law of Moses. Christians are dispensed from the obligation of tithing ten percent of their incomes, but not from the obligation to help the Church, by the giving of time, talent and money.
The key to understanding how God wants us to give to the Church is found in 1 Corinthians 16:2, "On the first day of the week [Sunday] each of you should set aside whatever they can afford," and in 2 Corinthians 9:5-8,
So to make sure there will be no slipup, I’ve recruited these brothers as an advance team to get you and your promised offering all ready before I get there. I want you to have all the time you need to make this offering in your own way. I don’t want anything forced or hurried at the last minute. God loves it when the giver delights in the giving.
To paraphrase: God doesn't demand a fixed amount of money from us; he wants us to give from the heart. If people are forced by their church to give a certain percent of their income, that's extortion. If they give freely and cheerfully the amount they are able, that's a gift.
Who are we really at St John’s Church?
We are the body of Christ. We are people living out our baptismal vows in this corner of Christ’s Body that we call Anglican. But we so often bound gleefully down the rabbit holes of false dichotomies. It is either this way or that way. It can only be progressive or traditional; it can only be liberal or conservative; it can only be building-centric or emergent. The fact is we all have different gifts and we need each other. The progressive brother cannot say to the traditional sister, “I have no need of you.”
Our God is amazing and Christ died to offer all of us the new life of grace, mercy, forgiveness, and love. So let us climb out of the holes we have dug for ourselves and see the dayspring from on high again as if for the first time.
The most transformational words the church can offer are these, “This is Body of Christ. This is the Blood of Christ.” So let us take and eat, take and drink. Let us taste and see. Let us be the Body of Christ and live more fully into this great and holy calling, nourished by Word and Communion, and strengthened for service in a world which God still loves abundantly.
The Rev. Ryan Whitley serves as Rector of St. George’s Episcopal Church in Aardmore, PA.
Stewardship in Community
The Benedictine Way
A one day reflection
This stewardship conference is about creating pathways to discipleship through our baptismal promises and the Marks of Mission. It is framed in the Benedictine way, which all of us experience as an ongoing conversion of life as we listen for God’s direction and find stability and support in our faith community. The day will be led by Bishop Melissa and the Reverend Marilyn Hames. Please let Fr Michael know as soon as you can that you will be attending to enable us to organise carpools.
Saturday October 18, 2014
9:00am - 4:00pm
Parish of St. Dunstan
Clergy on Holidays
Father Michael Fuller will be away on holidays from July 22nd to August 9th. Fr Michael Forshaw will be leading the service on July 27th and August 3rd. Bible study classes will resume late in the summer. Please contact the office if you have a pastoral emergency. We have arranged for pastoral coverage during this time. We wish Fr Michael a well-deserved rest!
Choral Evensong September 28th
Christ Church Cathedral
To celebrate our Cathedral's 125th Anniversary and to commemorate the Feast of St. Michael and all Angels there will be a Choral Evensong with a Massed Choir from the Diocese at 3:30pm on Sunday September 28th at Christ Church Cathedral, 690 Burrard Street at West Georgia. I do hope that many of us will join in this celebration, in addition to our own celebration of St Michael & all Angels at 10am here.
We offer our prayers for a speedy resolution to the ongoing dispute between the BCTF and the provincial government.
PWRDF Sends Initial $25,000 to Ahli Arab Hospital in Gaza
PWRDF has announced an initial grant of $25,000 to the Norwegian Church Aid (NCA) appeal through the ACT Alliance to support the continuing work of the Al Ahli Arab Hospital, an Anglican ministry located in Gaza City. The grant will help to provide fuel to keep the hospital operational around the clock, medications and medical supplies to help care for those wounded in the continuing violence in Gaza as well as their regular patients, and to provide counselling and support to women and children affected by the ongoing violence.
Violence between Hamas and Israel has escalated recently, leading to over 17,000 Palestinians fleeing their homes, according to the UN. Over 175 Palestinians have been killed in the latest conflict, and the Al Ahli Arab Hospital is treating over 300 wounded in the violence.
PWRDF has had a relationship with the Ahli Arab Hospital dating back to 1990, with several support grants in the last few years, including a $30,000 donation from the Diocese of Ottawa’s GIFT campaign. Last fall, PWRDF worked with NCA to help place a Canadian nurse in the hospital for a month of volunteer work.
More details: http://www.anglicanjournal.com/articles/pwrdf-issues-appeal-for-gaza
You can donate to PWRDF’s Gaza response in the following ways:
Jennifer Brown 1-866-308-7973
Please make cheques payable to PWRDF, Gaza Response and send to:
The Primate's World Relief and Development Fund
The Anglican Church of Canada
80 Hayden Street
Toronto, Ontario M4Y 3G2
At Wednesday’s meeting of the St John’s Shaughnessy Church Committee it was agreed to make a donation of $2000 towards the Gaza hospital support project. We are hoping that we might be able to receive matched funding from our community - please would you help? If 20 people were able to give $100 each we would be there. However, every little helps, please? This is not a political donation. We are not supporting the Palestinians over the Israelis. We are attempting to meet a humanitarian need.
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