Weekly ePistle 10/2/14

Men’s Breakfast Saturday, October 4th at 8:00 a.m.

All men of the parish (and their friends) are invited to share breakfast and conversation at Kim & Patty’s.

Celebrating the Feast of St. Francis of Assisi

Sunday afternoon at 3pm
October 5, 2014
Rain or Shine
On the grounds of St. Paul’s Episcopal Church
Everyone and all pets are most welcome!
Leashes and/or crates please!

A thank you note received from Heather Dodge, daughter of Donald Mergler:

My Dearest family, St. Paul Episcopal brothers and sisters,

St. Paul, McHenry, has always been my home and refuge and also became my dad’s. Thank you for loving us, being there for us, and showing God’s love, mercy, and Grace. Peace and blessings to all and thank you for the time, effort and generosity after the memorial service luncheon. I can’t begin to express my gratitude and love for everyone at my little St. Paul Episcopal Church, McHenry. Thank you Altar Guild for the loveliness of the church. Julie, thank you for the music. My dad was singing along. Lisa, thank you for all the church programs, obituary, copies, rewrites, phone calls, everything.

Thoughts from Lori +

On Lesser Feasts and Saints

This week’s calendar of saints is full of wonderful names: St. Michael and All Angels, Jerome, Therese of Lisieux… and Francis of Assisi.  This Saturday, October 4th, is the feast day for Francis, who is perhaps the most popular of the traditional saints.

He was born into a wealthy merchant family in Assisi (Italy), and until the age of about 20, worked for the family business.  Seeking his own fame and fortune, he entered military service to fight in the border dispute between Assisi and a neighboring city-state.  He was captured and held prisoner for a year until his father could ransom him.  After returning home, he was bedridden for another year with a life-threatening illness, probably tuberculosis.  He recovered sufficiently to rejoin his military unit, but before he could do so, he experienced a series of encounters with paupers and lepers that moved him deeply.  On the way home, he had a vision and heard the voice of God calling him.  As a result, he devoted the rest of his life to following Jesus by disavowing material comforts and identifying with the poor.

This, however, was anything but a smooth road.  As a result of his fervor and passionate preaching – to say nothing of his radical example – he gained followers and supporters.  Eventually, those known as Franciscans were recognized by Rome as an order devoted to helping the poor.  But even this wasn’t smooth sailing.  The order became divided over exactly how to help the poor; one group building grand friaries and churches while the other continued to shun such outward signs of wealth.  Eventually, Francis was granted permission to establish The Third Order, a group of friends and devotees who continued to live in the world while living in strict simplicity and service.

During the Christmastide of 1223, he and his followers put on what he called his “games” to explain the meaning of the Christmas story.  In a cave on the slope of a mountain, they arranged a crèche with a manger, hay, an ox and donkey.  Bringing candles, they held a Solemn Mass at which Francis sang the gospel.  This was the origin of the world-wide tradition of the Christmas crèche.
As difficult as it is to separate the legends from the history of Francis, much can be learned about him through countless biographies.  On the 700th anniversary of Francis’s death, Pope Pius XI said this: “…in no one has the image of Christ our Lord…been more faithfully and strikingly expressed than in Francis…He has been justly called ‘the second Christ’…”

In some of the stories about Francis, he was described as preaching to a flock of birds.  In another, he reportedly tamed a wolf that was terrorizing a village.  In his famous poem, “The Canticle of Brother Sun,” he extoled our connection with the whole creation, including all of God’s creatures, thus leading to his association with animals.  This week, many Christians, including St. Paul’s, will celebrate his life and ministry of Francis by having a Blessing of the Animals.  But let us not forget the true identity of Francis: that is, his absolute devotion to the poor.  Here is the collect for his feast day:

Most high, omnipotent, good Lord, grant your people grace to renounce gladly the vanities of this world; that, following the way of blessed Francis, we may for love of you delight in your whole creation with perfectness of joy; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.  Amen.

And this, as prayer attributed to Francis himself:

Lord, make me an instrument of your peace;
Where there is hatred, let me sow love;
Where there is injury, pardon;
Where there is discord, harmony;
Where there is error, truth;
Where there is doubt, faith;
Where there is despair, hope;
Where there is darkness, light;
And where there is sadness, joy.
O Divine Master, Grant that I may not so much seek
To be consoled as to console;
To be understood as to understand;
To be loved as to love.
For it is in giving that we receive;
It is in pardoning that we are pardoned;
And it is in dying that we are born to eternal life.

Lori +

Diaper Bank  Silent & Live Benefit Auction  October 25th, 2014

D’Andrea’s Banquets
4419 Northwest Highway, Crystal Lake
Tickets $50/person
Send reservations and check to:
The Diaper Bank, PO Box 2014, McHenry, IL 60051
Tickets are available in St. Paul’s office.
Call (815) 382-0004 for more information!

Upcoming Community Events!

Annual Rummage Sale
First United Methodist Church, McHenry
October 2nd-4th
1st UMC McHenry is hosting their annual rummage sale October 2-4. Proceeds will be donated to mission work. There is a flyer with  details posted in the narthex. Questions? Call their church office at 815-385-0931.

St. Ann’s Lobsterfest  October 18th
St. Ann’s Episcopal Church in Woodstock is hosting their annual Lobsterfest! Portions of the proceeds will benefit Woodstock area ministries. The order deadline is October 13, and cards are available in the narthex to fill out. You may call 815-338-0950 or order online at www.lobsterchurch.org.

Lessons and Hymns  Sunday, September 28th

(Pentecost XVI – Proper 21 A)
by the Rev. William McLemore


The First Reading: The Track I readings are Exodus 20:1-4,7-9,12-20 and Psalm 19; the Track II readings are Isaiah 5:1-7 and Psalm 80:7-14.   Exodus gives the Ten Commandments. Isaiah portrays the House of Israel as God’s vineyard. The Track I Psalm includes, “the statutes of the Lord are just,” and the Track II Psalm has the verse, “You have brought a vine out of Egypt.”
The Epistle: Philippians 3:4b-14. Here, St. Paul recounts his Jewish heritage and desire to press on with his new faith in Jesus Christ.
The Gospel: Matthew 21:33-46. Jesus tells the parable of the landowner who plants a vineyard and hires tenants to watch over it, but they selfishly kill his son, his heir.


PROCESSIONAL HYMN: No. 372. “Praise to the Living God.” This hymn was written by Thomas Olivers and is based on an ancient Jewish creed called the “Yigdal.”   It has thirteen articles that praise God in every way imaginable.   Translated into English, it begins with these words, “Extolled and praised be the living God, who exists unbounded by time.” The tune was written by a Jewish cantor, Meyer Lyon, thus the name, “Leoni.”
THE SEQUENCE HYMN:  No. 628. “Help Us, O Lord, to Learn the Truths.” This hymn was written by William Watkins Reid, Jr. (1923-2009), who earned degrees from Oberlin in 1945 and 1947, and then obtained a degree from Yale Divinity School. He served the Methodist Church not only in local parishes but also through his involvement in annual conferences and membership on various commissions and boards of that denomination.   The hymn extols the benefits of studying Holy Scriptures and therefore is in this section of our hymnal. The tune, “St. Ethelwald,” was composed by William Henry Monk (1823-1889).
PRESENTATION HYMN: No. 474. “When I Survey the Wondrous Cross.” This is another hymn written by Isaac Watts.. He wrote this hymn being inspired by Galatians 6:14, “May I never boast of anything except the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by which the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world.” The tune, “Rockingham,” was adapted from an old English psalmody hymnal by Edward Miller (1731-1807).
COMMUNION HYMN:   No. 711, “Seek Ye First”   This hymn is based on Matthew 6:33 and was written and composed by Karen Lafferty.   Karen is a well-known Christian musician who lives in New Mexico, but travels around the world spreading the faith through music.   She says that after years of singing in bars and saloons, she felt she needed to get closer to God. Somehow, she read this passage in Matthew and “the hymn simply fell together, along with the alleluias!” She has produced many hymns now and can be found on Facebook.
RECESSIONAL HYMN: No. 495. “Hail, Thou Once Despised Jesus.” This hymn is one which praises Jesus in his various roles: Galilean King, Universal Savior, Paschal Lamb, God Appointed, Reconciler, Intercessor, and the Emmanuel. The original composition is ascribed to John Blakewell (1721-1819) with later adaptations by Martin Madan (1726-1790). The tune, “In Babilone,” is a traditional Dutch melody. When the 1906 hymnal was being produced, the hymn was harmonized by Ralph Vaughan Williams (1872-1958) and has been in our hymnals since.

October 5th Servants

Ushers:  Bob Backer, Terry Jaworski
Lector:  Rick Carlstedt
Intercessor:  Judy Robel
Eucharistic Ministers:  Nancy Backer, Al Robel
Vestry Person of the Day:  Beth Lukas

101 Reasons to be an Episcopalian

Reason 50

“As an Anglican I can be myself. I can be authentic and feel accepted and respected.”

Glauco Soares de Lima, Bishop Primate of Brazil

From the cartoons created by the Rev. William P. McLemore

1965 – 2014

video game