February 4, 2024
THE FATHER IS MY HOPE; THE SON IS MY REFUGE;
THE HOLY SPIRIT IS MY PROTECTIOR.
ALL HOLY TRINITY, GLORY TO THEE!
LIVE AUDIO STREAMING during today’s service is available on the Order of Service page. Recorded audio will be added following worship.
GETTING READY FOR SUNDAY: PREVIEW OF THE READINGS.
On this Sexagesima Sunday we continue our pre-Lenten preparations with the Parable of the Sower where we are encouraged this Lent to cultivate the soil of hearts so that “hearing the word of God, we might hold it fast in an honest and good heart, and bear fruit with patient endurance.” In our Epistle lesson St. Paul describes just how much need there is for patient endurance in the face of outward circumstances and inward weaknesses that would impede our progress, on account of which need to encourage one another in community and pray for God to defend us against all adversities.
THE LESSON: 2 Corinthians 11:21-29
To my shame, I must say, we were too weak for that! But whatever any one dares to boast of—I am speaking as a fool—I also dare to boast of that. Are they Hebrews? So am I. Are they Israelites? So am I. Are they descendants of Abraham? So am I. Are they servants of Christ? I am a better one—I am talking like a madman—with far greater labors, far more imprisonments, with countless beatings, and often near death. Five times I have received at the hands of the Jews the forty lashes less one. Three times I have been beaten with rods; once I was stoned. Three times I have been shipwrecked; a night and a day I have been adrift at sea; on frequent journeys, in danger from rivers, danger from robbers, danger from my own people, danger from Gentiles, danger in the city, danger in the wilderness, danger at sea, danger from false brethren; in toil and hardship, through many a sleepless night, in hunger and thirst, often without food, in cold and exposure. And, apart from other things, there is the daily pressure upon me of my anxiety for all the churches. Who is weak, and I am not weak? Who is made to fall, and I am not indignant?
THE HOLY GOSPEL: Luke 8:4-15
When a great crowd gathered and people from town after town came to him, he said in a parable: ‘A sower went out to sow his seed; and as he sowed, some fell on the path and was trampled on, and the birds of the air ate it up. Some fell on the rock; and as it grew up, it withered for lack of moisture. Some fell among thorns, and the thorns grew with it and choked it. Some fell into good soil, and when it grew, it produced a hundredfold.’ As he said this, he called out, ‘Let anyone with ears to hear listen!’ Then his disciples asked him what this parable meant. He said, ‘To you it has been given to know the secrets of the kingdom of God; but to others I speak in parables, so that “looking they may not perceive, and listening they may not understand.” ‘Now the parable is this: The seed is the word of God. The ones on the path are those who have heard; then the devil comes and takes away the word from their hearts, so that they may not believe and be saved. The ones on the rock are those who, when they hear the word, receive it with joy. But these have no root; they believe only for a while and in a time of testing fall away. As for what fell among the thorns, these are the ones who hear; but as they go on their way, they are choked by the cares and riches and pleasures of life, and their fruit does not mature. But as for that in the good soil, these are the ones who, when they hear the word, hold it fast in an honest and good heart, and bear fruit with patient endurance.
PARISH LIFE NOTES
LOWER HALL RENOVATION UPDATE. Our thanks to Simon, Len, and Nino for their work on Thursday and Friday in painting the walls of the Lower Hall. Next week, a professional painter will be spraying the ceiling, and we look forward to the installation of new flooring at the end of the month.
2023 TAX RECEIPTS will be available in the coming weeks. If you would like to receive yours electronically, please send Blair a note. If you have previously received yours by email, Blair will email your 2023 receipt when it is ready.
2024 PLEDGE CAMPAIGN. To date we have received 38 pledges for a total of $ $115,280. If you have not submitted a pledge for the coming year, please be encouraged to do so, and so aid the Vestry in its plans and stewardship.
RECTOR’S FORUM will follow the service today (Sexagesima). Topic: Making the most of Lent. What is Lent? Where did it come from? How can I enter into Lent with depth of purpose and meaning?
BURNING BUSH ALERT! Please visit the “Burning Bush Exhibit” in the Upper Hall from the story of Moses and the Burning Bush ( Exodus 3.1-14) which the Faith Quest children are studying. What is God telling you, challenging you, or promising you? Write a prayer on the flame and tape it to the bush.
CONFIRMATION SERVICE. On February 11th, Bishop Helen will be at St. Mary’s to administer the laying on of hands with Prayer to Anya. Salad Sunday lunch will follow in the Parish Hall. Please bring finger food/salads to share.
NOMINATIONS FOR 2024. Our Churchwardens, Andrew and John will be seeking out nominations for people to serve as warden and vestry members for the coming year.
ANNUAL MEETING has been scheduled for Sunday, March 3rd. The business will be to review ministry reports, financial statements and to elect parish officers for the coming year.
LENTEN MISSION 2024
Blessed are You: Living the Beatitudes
Guest Speaker: Dr. John Patrick, President and Professor of the History of Science, Medicine and Faith Augustine College, Ottawa
February 23 – 25 Friday and Saturday at 7:00 p.m. Sunday at 10.30 a.m.
PUBLIC LECTURE with Dr. John Patrick: “What Hyppocrates Knew and The Practice of Medicine in the Modern Age.” The loss of transcendent values and religious faith in the modern age has had a profound effect on the practice of medicine for physicians and patients alike. What role, if any, does faith play in the practice of medicine, and what does Hippocrates, the “Father of Medicine” have to teach us? Saturday, February 24 10.30 a.m.
WORSHIP THIS WEEK
Morning Prayer: Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday at 8:30 a.m. Wednesday at 9:00 a.m.
Evening Prayer: Wednesday at 5.30 p.m.