The Episcopal Church of St. John the Baptist
invites you to
A St. Francis Festival
October 1 – 4, 2015
Thursday, October 1 Celtic Eucharist
7 p.m. – Snack Reception Follows
Saturday, October 3 Blessing of Animals
10 a.m. – Takes place outside
Sunday, October 4 Festival Eucharist
10:30 a.m. – Blessing of Stuffed Animals
The Rev. Elaine H. Breckenridge
Sunday, September 28, 2014
The Sixteenth Sunday after Pentecost: Proper 21Listen to this…Sermon 2014.09.28 EHB
The Rev. Randy Knutson
Sunday, September 21, 2014
Sermon The Fifteenth Sunday after Pentecost: Proper 20 A
Listen to this…Sermon 2014 09 21 Proper 20A RK
“The First shall be Last and the Last shall be First.” These words are important for this gospel and are found in many of the Gospels. This reversal, this idea, this spark, is in our outlook and thinking as Christians. In some cases, it may turn the world on its head, but it also opens more to explore here: Expectation, Envy and Generosity.
There are many views and understandings of this parable from Matthew; it important to know it is the continuation of the theme in the previous chapter, chapter 19, just before our Gospel text, which ends with this: “But many who are first will be last, and the last will be first.” Today’s Gospel continues this theme and the careful arrangement of this switch, first/last and last/first creates the dilemma in this parable. If those hired first had received their pay first, and then gone home, there would be no problem, no misunderstanding; but also no parable to learn from and ponder. So this is a key in this parable and in the Gospels, but I would like to deal also with what it unlocks.
The first is expectation. Expectation is a part of life; everywhere we go, with everything we do, we act and react many times with expectation. Where we wake up in the morning, when we can stumble to the bathroom in the dark in the middle of the night without turning on the light: we deal with expectation. When we pull out of the drive way and then come to the signal lights on Lower Sacramento Road to get here; that we can go when the light is green and others stop (we hope) when they get a red light: expectation. Certainly we see expectation play a part in our first lesson, about the prophet Jonah. He calls on the great city of Ninevah to repent and they do, but they repent not up to Jonah’s expectations, but certainly to Gods, so they are spared. However, Jonah is not satisfied and it shows. He would rather go away and die than see things not live up to his expectations. So God sends him a bush to shade his final, hot days and he laments it’s early death more than he does the possible loss of thousands of people in Ninevah. His expectations are in the wrong pace and are dashed. Expectation, however are not bad or good, just a part of life we should see and know about; something we have to be aware of, how they mold and shape our lives and our behavior.
The Rev. Elaine H. Breckenridge
Sunday, September 14, 2014
The Fourteenth Sunday after Pentecost: Proper 19
Listen to this…Sermon 2014.09.14 EHB
People interested in being part of a contemplative prayer circle are invited to attend sessions being offered Thursdays, September 18 & 25 7:00-8:30 p.m. The group will convened initially by The Rev. Elaine H. Breckenridge. The purpose of the group is to practice quiet prayer (at least twenty minutes of silence) and reflect with others in the group on the prayer experience. This will be a covenanted group, meaning that participants will learn to practice deep listening skills and be comfortable participating in the conversation.
After the initial session, depending on participant’s calendars, the group will continue meeting twice monthly. For questions or additional information, please contact Elaine Breckenridge firstname.lastname@example.org.
A Celebration of the Life of Jack Harkins will be held on Sunday, September 21 at 3:00 p.m. A parish reception will follow in the narthex.
The Rev. Elaine H. Breckenridge
Sermon from September 7, Proper 18A 2014
Listen to this…Sermon 2014.09.07 EHB
Once upon a time, there was a Jewish synagogue that had a conflict. And the conflict centered around the SHEMA, the sacred moment in the Hebrew liturgy when the congregation says, “Hear O Israel, the Lord is One God and you shall love the Lord God with all your heart, mind and soul.” There was one group in the synagogue that said, “When we hear the SHEMA, we should stand in respect and reverence. But there was another group that said, “ We should sit in the posture of learning, as a symbol that we are being taught.” These two groups continued to argue about it until one day, the rabbi said, “The only solution to this conflict is to visit Mr. Finkelstein, the oldest living member of the original congregation. Let us go to him and ask him what the practice was when they started this synagogue.” So the rabbi took three standers and three sitters and went to see Mr. Finkelstein. One of the standers said, “Now Mr. Finkelstein, surely when they heard the SHEMA in those early days of the synagogue, you stood. Can you remember? Tell us and help us out of this impasse.” Mr. Finkelstein, said, “I can’t remember.” Then a person representing the sitters said, “Surely when that great moment of instruction came you sat down to hear the SHEMA, “Hear O Israel.”
Mr. Finkelstein said, “I can’t remember.”
Then the rabbi said, “Now Mr. Finkelstein , you’ve got to put your mind to this question. Tell us what it was like in those old traditional days. Members of our congregation are now fighting each other, tearing each other apart. The congregation is divided. “That,” Mr. Finkelstein said,
Please note that the Men’s BBQ is scheduled for Sunday, September 7, 2014
at 5:00 p.m. Please join us for fun and fellowship.
We look forward to seeing you there!
St. John’s Parish Choir begins another year of singing on Wednesday,
September 10, from 7 pm to 8:30 pm. Our Parish Choir serves weekly at the 10:30 am liturgy, providing music and leadership for that service, but also at special times in the year, like Christmas Eve, Liturgies in Holy Week, Easter and other times. If you are interested in coming, please call (327-1870) or email Randy Knutson (email@example.com), so we can have music and a choir folder ready for you when you come.