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Vision Statement for St. Paul’s, Marfa, Texas
St. Paul’s is an open, loving community
growing in the experience and understanding of the love of God,
acting to share the visible presence and compassion of Christ.
 
Mission Statement for St. Paul’s, Marfa, Texas:
Our mission is to be a welcoming, prayerful, caring community
actively sharing the love of God.

Values Statement for St. Paul's Marfa, Texas
To accomplish our mission, St. Paul’s Episcopal Church bases its decisions and actions on the following core values:
Love of God and neighbor by honoring the worth and dignity of every human being including ourselves.
Daily relationship with God all through our lives through prayer and service.
The importance of giving and receiving forgiveness through the generosity of the Holy Spirit.
We value continual learning.
We value the Episcopal tradition of communal worship.
Practicing hospitality by welcoming all and serving and sharing with our communities.
The stewardship of God’s creation and all its inhabitants.
 

 

"Never lose an opportunity of seeing anything beautiful,
for beauty is God's handwriting." -Ralph Waldo Emerson 

 


 


The Bishop's Committee has set a threshold number for active cases in the Tri-county area to determine whether to offer in-person worship. When that threshold is crossed, we will have only live-stream worship on that particular Sunday. The decision will be made every Friday and put in an email with the regular Saturday announcements We will always live-stream!

LIVESTREAM


Just go to the VIDEO tab and at 10:30 a live stream will begin, you just need to push the play button on the live video to join us.

As we have done since our pandemic responses have been in place, please let me know if you wish to receive communion at home or wish for a pastoral visit in person or by Zoom. We will look forward to seeing you, one way or another, on Sunday.


Love one another.
Pray for one another.
Stay calm.
Wear a mask, keep your distance and wash your hands.

 

A Prayer for Quiet Confidence
O God of peace, who hast taught us that in returning
and rest we shall be saved, 

in quietness and confidence shall be our strength: 
By the might of thy Spirit lift us, we pray thee, 
to thy presence, where we may be still and know that thou art God; 
through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Book of Common Prayer, p. 832




 

~FEBRUARY~


 
23rd - Tuesday

Tuesday, February 23: To withhold forgiveness is the adoration of the past when it is the present that de- mands the best of us.

Polycarp of Smyrna, Bishop and Martyr, 156 
 

24th - Wednesday

Wednesday, February 24: Try to remember this insight: “There isn’t anyone you couldn’t love once you’ve heard their story.” You know yours and how it affects you. Have you ever bothered to hear anyone else’s?

SAINT MATTHIAS THE APOSTLE 
3:30 - Sin Fronteras Book Study
Cruelty as Citizenship:
How Migrant Suffering Sustains White Democracy

Beltrán, Cristina

Chapter 2

Join Here

7:00 PM - LENTEN STUDY

Spending Time: The Eternal Value of Numbering Our Days

We need to manage our time with eternity in mind. None of us knows how many days, hours, or seconds we have left on Earth; all of us want to spend those days, hours, and seconds on something significant. This study will instruct us on the value of numbering our days. By doing so, we realize how few we actually have, spend them wisely, and live them out for God’s eternal purposes.

Scripture: Psalm 90
Click Here


25th - Thursday

Thursday, February 25: It’s one thing to “forgive” for the sake of civility. It is another thing to forgive “from the heart.” Civility urges us to maintain the connections we have for the sake of our own advantage. The heart urges us to go beyond the hurt to the place where freedom lies and learning happens and trust is possible again, even if not here, not this.

John Roberts, Priest, 1949
4:00 - Book Study Group on Zoom
The Book of Longings by Sue Monk Kidd
CLICK HERE

26th - Friday

Friday, February 26: Forgive- ness does not ignore responsibility but it does not tolerate vengeance. To jail criminals for life in order to protect the public is one thing; to become killers in order to punish them is vengeance. Where does that fit in a Divine schema that says, “Vengeance is mine; I will repay,” says God?

Photini, The Samaritan Woman, c.67 
Emily Malbone Morgan, Prophetic Witness, 1937

27th - Saturday

Saturday, February 27: Beware of premature forgiveness: the kind that absolves another person with- out taking the time, making the effort to examine what the bitterness is saying to your own soul about your own needs and expectations.

George Herbert, Priest and Poet, 1633 
 

28th - Sunday

Sunday, February 28: A preacher stood over the bed of a dying man shouting, “Renounce Satan; renounce Satan and be forgiven!” The dying man opened one eye, looked at the preacher and said, “Sure, easy for you to say, Pastor, but in my situation, I don’t dare alienate anybody.” The old man may have a point: You have to won- der if forgiveness that comes with strings at-tached is really forgiveness at all.

 
10:30 - The Second Sunday of Lent
https://facebook.com/stpaulsmarfatx
Live Streamed at 10:30 am


Anna Julia Haywood Cooper, Educator, 1904 
Elizabeth Evelyn Wright, 1904, Educator

~MARCH~
1st - Monday
David of Wales, Bishop, c. 544
12:30 - 1:00 -  Centering Prayer
The Casita

2nd - Tuesday
Chad of Lichfield, Bishop, 672  
7:00 PM - WAY OF LOVE GROUP

3rd - Wednesday
John and Charles Wesley, Priests, 1791, 1988 
3:30 - Sin Fronteras Book Study
Cruelty as Citizenship:
How Migrant Suffering Sustains White Democracy

Beltrán, Cristina

Chapter 3

Join Here

7:00 PM - LENTEN STUDY
Finding Financial Freedom

A great number of Americans today are enslaved by money. They’re in bondage to their creditors, the consumer culture, and their own insatiable appetites for more and more stuff. The purpose of this Bible study is to provide biblical steps to financial freedom. If you want your life to count, you have to master your money.

Scripture: Proverbs 11:24; 13:6–16; 17:16; 22:26–27
Click Here

 


4th - Thursday
Paul Cuffee, Witness to the Faith among the Shinnecock, 1812

4:00 - Book Study Group on Zoom
The Book of Longings by Sue Monk Kidd
CLICK HERE

5th - Friday

6th - Saturday
William W. Mayo, 1911, and Charles Menninger, 1953,
and Their Sons, Pioneers in Medicine

7th - Sunday
10:30 - The Third Sunday of Lent
https://facebook.com/stpaulsmarfatx
Live Streamed at 10:30 am


Perpetua and Felicity, Martyrs, 202

8th - Monday
12:30 - 1:00 -  Centering Prayer
The Casita

 
9th - Tuesday
 Gregory of Nyssa, Bishop and Theologian, c. 394 
 

10:30 - Marfa Ministerial Alliance

10th - Wednesday
Harriet Ross Tubman, Social Reformer, 1913 

 
3:30 - Sin Fronteras Book Study
Cruelty as Citizenship:
How Migrant Suffering Sustains White Democracy

Beltrán, Cristina

Conclusion

Join Here

7:00 PM - LENTEN STUDY

Tithes, Offerings and Thieves

God wants to minister to our nation and our world in many wonderful ways, yet he chooses to work through the obedience and generosity of his children. The purpose of this study is to awaken a desire for obedience and generosity in our hearts. To have a life that counts, we must stop robbing God and start giving generously.

Scripture: Malachi 3:7–12
Click Here


11th - Thursday

4:00 - Book Study Group on Zoom
The Book of Longings by Sue Monk Kidd
CLICK HERE


12th - Friday
Gregory the Great, Bishop and Theologian, 604 

 
13th - Saturday
James Theodore Holly, Bishop of Haiti, and of the Dominican Republic, 1911

14th - Sunday
10:30 - The Fourth Sunday of Lent
https://facebook.com/stpaulsmarfatx
Live Streamed at 10:30 am

Vincent de Paul, Priest, and Louise de Marillac,
Monastic, Workers of Charity, 1660


15th - Monday
12:30 - 1:00 -  Centering Prayer
The Casita

 
16th - Tuesday
 
17th - Wednesday
Patrick of Ireland, Bishop and Missionary, 461
3:30 - Sin Fronteras Book Study
Cruelty as Citizenship:
How Migrant Suffering Sustains White Democracy

Beltrán, Cristina

Open Forum

7:00 PM - LENTEN STUDY

Use Your Talents Wisely

Every Christian has God-given talents. Unfortunately, it seems that only a few Christians have learned how to mobilize those talents to make an eternal impact for the kingdom of God. The purpose of this study is to help us use our God-given talents for maximum impact. To do that, Christians must focus on their strengths, use their gifts with excellence, and live with intensity.

Scripture: 1 Peter 4:7–11

Click Here


18th - Thursday 
Cyril, Bishop of Jerusalem, 386


4:00 - Book Study Group on Zoom
The Book of Longings by Sue Monk Kidd
CLICK HERE

19th - Friday

SAINT JOSEPH 

 
20th - Saturday
Thomas Ken, Bishop of Bath and Wells, 1711

 
21st - Sunday
10:30 - The Fifth Sunday of Lent
https://facebook.com/stpaulsmarfatx
Live Streamed at 10:30 am


Thomas Cranmer, Archbishop of Canterbury, Liturgist, and Martyr 1556

22nd - Monday
James De Koven, Priest, 1879

12:30 - 1:00 -  Centering Prayer
The Casita

 
23rd - Tuesday
Gregory the Illuminator, Bishop and Missionary of Armenia, c. 332
24th - Wednesday

Oscar Romero, Archbishop and Martyr, 1980 and the Martyrs of El Salvador 
7:00 PM - LENTEN STUDY

Give It All To Jesus

All of us have time, money, and talents. And all of us have something that could potentially cause us to walk away from Jesus and become deprived of a life that counts. The purpose of this study is to warn about the danger of holding back our resources from Jesus. Jesus offers us a life that counts, now and forever; all we have to do is let go of what we want and put our resources in his hands.

Scripture: Mark 10:17–31

Click Here


25th - Thursday
THE ANNUNCIATION OF OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST TO THE BLESSED VIRGIN MARY 

4:00 - Book Study Group on Zoom
The Book of Longings by Sue Monk Kidd
CLICK HERE

26th - Friday
Harriet Monsell, Monastic, 1883 

Richard Allen, First Bishop of the
African Methodist Episcopal Church, 1831

 

27th - Saturday
Charles Henry Brent, Bishop of the Philippines,
and of Western New York, 1929

28th - Sunday
10:30 - The Sunday of the Passion: Palm Sunday
https://facebook.com/stpaulsmarfatx
​Live Streamed at 10:30 am

James Solomon Russell, Priest, 1935 
 
29th - Monday
MONDAY IN HOLY WEEK
https://facebook.com/stpaulsmarfatx
Live Streamed at 6:00 PM


John Keble, Priest and Poet, 1866

12:30 - 1:00 -  Centering Prayer
The Casita



CREATION JUSTICE
LENT 2021

In Lent, we reflect on Christ’s ministry, death, and resurrection. We slow down, and examine our internal spiritual lives as well as the way we live out our Christian faith in the world. Our faith teaches us that humans were put on this earth with the responsibility to be stewards. We also know our individual as well as collective U.S. lifestyles have led to serious harm to God’s good creation. This Lenten reflection and action guide will help individuals take time to learn, reflect, repent, ask God for forgiveness, and take concrete steps to change course. 

February 23 

Save energy and add some beneficial humidity to your house by air-drying your laundry. 

February 24 

Watch the “oldie but goodie” 14-minute video “God’s Creation and Global Warming” at www.creationjustice.org/videos 

February 25 

Consider making a plan with others at church for an Earth Day Sunday celebration, on April 18. (Earth Day is April 22). Resources available at www.creationjustice.org/earth-day- Sunday 

February 26 

Write a note to a child in your life who inspires you to sustain God’s creation for future generations. 

February 27 

Watch a nature documentary. Planet Earth and Earth’s Natural Wonders are good options. Marvel at the miracle of God’s creation.

February 28 

The average person spends 87% of their time indoors. Consider adopting a new spiritual practice that makes you more attuned to God’s creation. Find ideas at www.centerforspiritualityinnature.org/p ractices 

March 1 

Write down one planned action you will take to honor God’s creation with your landscape or garden plans in the spring. Find ideas from the US Forest Service at www.fs.fed.us/wildflowers/Native_Plant _Materials 

March 2 

Watch the “Story of Stuff” online video at www.storyofstuff.org 

March 3 

Decide not to add any items to the landfill today. Use real cups, cloth napkins, reusable bags for groceries, and reusable water bottles. 

March 4 

If you don’t already have one, consider ordering a copy of The Green Bible. All passages related to care and justice for God’s creation are in green print. It is available online. 

March 5 

Are there “energy vampires” in your home which you can unplug to make a difference? Check www.smartenergy.com/energy-vampire for ideas. Then, try out a practice of observing the Sabbath by unplugging your electronics! 

March 6 

Take note of how your church’s coffee hour is run. Look for opportunities to become more sustainable, such as eliminating Styrofoam, using china instead of paper cups, or buying from local vendors.

March 7 

Labor exploitation is often tied up in sustaining our current levels of consumption. Take the Human Slavery Footprintsurvey at (slaveryfootprint.org). Consider ways to decrease your participation in modern-day slavery. 

March 8 

Do you know what watershed you live in? Find out, explore, and consider connecting with a local watershed stewardship organization: https://watersgeo.epa.gov/mywaterway/ rlist.html 

March 9 

For Easter baskets, consider buying Fair Trade chocolate, dried fruit, tea and coffee or small gifts made by fair trade cooperatives. www.equalexchange.coop 

March 10 

Refugee displacement and hunger relate to damage to God’s creation. Spend some time reflecting on how issues of care for God’s creation relate to your faith community’s anti-hunger, peacemaking, and refugee resettlement ministries. 

March 11 

Learn where your food comes from. Explore the Christian food movement to learn how Christians across the country are making a difference through food: www.christianfoodmovement.org 

March 12 

Say a prayer for God’s threatened and endangered creatures. Consider sharing an Endangered Species coloring book for children to color during worship or Sunday School: fws.gov/nativeamerican/pdf/endangere d-species-coloring-book.pdf. 

March 13 

Do a “water fast” by turning off water while brushing your teeth, and flushing your toilet half as often. Around the world, many people have access only to the amount of water each day that Americans use in one toilet flush.

March 14 

Give up two degrees: for every degree the thermostat is below 68 in the winter or above 78 in the summer there’s a 3- 5% savings in energy use and cost. 

March 15 

Many of the actions necessary to care for God’s creation require coordinated, collective action. Often, government is the best instrument for such action. Check to make sure your voter registration is current, and prepare to vote in every election. 

March 16 

Lower the temperature of your water heater to 120 degrees. 

March 17 

Check the light bulbs in your house. Are they the most efficient possible? Energy savings from LED light bulbs pay off quickly for God’s creation and your energy bill. 

March 18 

Begin the process of thinking through how to give away unneeded clothes, bakeware, and other goods to people who could use them, and rethink, reuse, and recycle other items. Learn more at www.earth911.com 

March 19 

We can see through the biodiversity of all God’s creation that God loves diversity. God loves diversity among people, too. Virtually connect with someone who differs from your usual social bubble. Read Ephesians 2:11-22. 

March 20 

Schedule a tune-up to set your car tire pressure to the recommended level for optimal gas mileage. Practice driving mindfully. Higher speeds (55 mph+) reduce fuel economy.

March 21 

Remember your baptism today. What does it mean to you to be baptized? Spend some time praying or journaling about what happens to this sacrament when the world’s waters become polluted and inaccessible? 

March 22 

It’s World Water Day. Observed annually, today we recognize how people around the world are affected by water issues: www.un.org/en/events/waterday 

March 23 

Visit waterfootprint.org to learn more about water footprint. Say a prayer of gratitude every time you sip water today. 

March 24 

Nearly half of all food in the United States never gets eaten, while one in eight people in the U.S. suffer hunger. Check out local resources for reducing food waste, and how to help encourage local stores to give to those in need. 

March 25 

Choose a reusable water bottle and commit to using it instead of purchasing individual, disposable water bottles. 

March 26 

Plan or plant seeds for a garden, even a window garden, to support a local food system, and to remember hope and new life in Christ: almanac.com/content/beginners-vegetable-garden 

March 27 

To show love for our Creator, we respect and protect all of creation. Take a moment today to pick up trash off the street, or from a local stream or storm drain.

March 28 

Read Psalm 31. As we think about Christ’s journey during Holy Week, may we recognize the lament, grief, and despair of the world around us. Climate injustice, poverty, hunger, and human suffering seem insurmountable. Trust that God hears us. 

March 29 

Read Duane Elgin’s essay Choosing a New Lifeway: Voluntary Simplicity. www.duaneelgin.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/11/choosing_a_ne w_lifeway.pdf 

March 30 

Burial rituals can help, rather than harm, God’s creation. Learn about how to leave a sustainable legacy at www.GreenBurialCouncil.org. Schedule a time to talk with a loved one regarding your feelings about this subject. 

March 31 

Choose one of the practices from this Lent that may be meaningful to you to adopt for the year ahead. Write down your choice and share your commitment with a family member or friend. 

April 1 - Holy Thursday 

Read John 13:1-17, 31b-35. How does creation participate alongside humanity as Jesus institutes the Lord’s Supper? How can we love God’s creations as Christ has loved us? Write down your commitment to show love to God’s creation today. 

April 2 - Good Friday 

Read Hebrews 4:14-16. In confidence of God’s presence and attention, may we confess all that we have done and failed to do, willing to be made new in Christ for a reconciled and reconciling world. 

April 3 

Support Creation Justice Ministries (CJM), the eco-ministry arm of the National Council of Churches, dedicated to combining the truth of Christ with ecological justice. Visit www.creationjustice.org/donate

Matthew 28:1-10 

Do not be afraid! Go out into God’s good world, holding onto God’s steadfast love and joyfully answering the call to be Christ’s disciple. 
 

Creator of the universe,you made the world in beauty,and restore all things in gloryt hrough the victory of Jesus Christ.We pray that, wherever your image is still disfiguredby poverty, sickness, selfishness, war and greed,the new creation in Jesus Christ may appear in justice, love, and peace,to the glory of your name. Amen. 

(from the Revised Common Lectionary Prayers) 


Easter Sunday - April 4 

The calendar was adapted for ecumenical use by Creation Justice Ministries from the Presbyterian Hunger Program’s Environmental Ministries and Enough for Everyone offices, drawing heavily on the 2018 version. 

A note from the Creation Justice Ministries Team: 

We hope you found great use in this years Lent resource and wish our Creation Justice Ministries community a wonderful Easter celebration. As we look ahead to our busiest month of the year, we hope you'll take a moment to ensure that you're following us on Facebook, Twitter & Instagram @CreationJustice. 

April has a special place in our community as the month we celebrate the Earth and all of God's beautiful creation. April 22nd is Earth Day, and if you have not yet we encourage you to check our our annual Earth Day resource at www.earthdaysunday.org. 

Would you like to see more resources like this? We can do that with your help! To all that are able, we are grateful for any gifts at www.creationjustice.org/donate.


 



 

Prayers of the People--First Sunday in Lent

Come quickly to help us, O Merciful One, for we are assaulted by many temptations and our people suffer from so many ills. Hear our prayer as I pray...We put our trust in you, O God; and you respond by saying let none who look to you be put to shame.

+ Visit your Church in mercy and compassion, O Gracious One, as we enter these forty days of Lent, and grant us renewal of your Spirit and a rekindling of your light....We put our trust in you, O God;....let none who look to you be put to shame.

+ Almighty One, you guide the humble in doing right and teach your way to the lowly: Let the treacherous be disappointed in their schemes, and show your ways to all in authority, that they may follow your paths of love and faithfulness....We put our trust in you, O God;....let none who look to you be put to shame.

+ Let the risen Christ who has suffered for all bring your divine power and hope throughout the world to all who live in wildernesses of violence, poverty, oppression and injustice, that your angels may deliver them from their distress and comfort them with your everlasting love;....We put our trust in you, O God;....let none who look to you be put to shame.

+ Give to our President and his advisors honesty and trustworthiness in all their dealings, so that they may come before their people with a good conscience and the integrity that flows from a sound spirit;....We put our trust in you, O God;....let none who look to you be put to shame.

+ You established your covenant with Noah and gave us the rainbow as a sign of your protective care, let your providence extend over us in our day, protect your creation and inspire us to be responsible stewards of the Earth you have given us;....We put our trust in you, O God;....let none who look to you be put to shame..

+ Descend upon this faith community with your gracious Spirit, O God, that we and all our neighbors may embrace the good news of your kingdom and live as beloved children in your new creation as we live out our mission to be a welcoming, prayerful, caring community actively sharing the love of God;....We put our trust in you, O God;....let none who look to you be put to shame.

Lord, have mercy upon us, and guide our reason and imaginations as we continue the offering of our prayers.

+Remember, O God, your compassion and love, for they are from everlasting, as we bring to you our intercession on behalf of we know and can name in the silence of our hearts; for those we don’t know but know about, and for those worldwide who suffer....We put our trust in you, O God;....let none who look to you be put to shame.

+We come to you in grateful thanksgiving for all the blessings we name at this time....We put our trust in you, O God;....let none who look to you be put to shame.

+Let those who have died be made alive in the spirit to dwell with Christ at the right hand of God, with angels, authorities, and powers made subject to him. We remember especially Sue, victims of Covid-19 and all those we wish to name at this time....We put our trust in you, O God;....let none who look to you be put to shame.

Concluding Collect said by the Officiant: Send your angels to uphold us, O God, whenever the wild beasts of oppression or the inner beasts of temptation assault your people, that we may be your beloved, living faithfully in the kingdom given to us through your Son, our Savior Jesus Christ, in the power of the holy Spirit, for you are one God, who lives and reigns for ever and ever. AMEN.

 

For Our Country

Almighty God, who has given us this good land for our

heritage: We humbly ask you that we may always prove

ourselves a people mindful of your favor and glad to do your will.

Bless our land with honorable industry, sound learning, and

pure manners. Save us from violence, discord, and confusion;

from pride and arrogance, and from every evil way. Defend

our liberties, and fashion into one united people the multitudes

brought here out of many kindreds and tongues. Endue

with the spirit of wisdom those to whom in your Name we entrust

the authority of government, that there may be justice and

peace at home, and that, through obedience to your law, we

may show forth your praise among the nations of the earth.

In the time of prosperity, fill our hearts with thankfulness,

and in the day of trouble, suffer not our trust in you to fail;

all which we ask through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Prayer for St. Paul's 
(adapted from a prayer written by Richard Rohr)

O Great Love,

thank you for living and loving in us and through us.
May all that we do

flow from our deep connection with you and all beings.

Help our faith community become a community
that vulnerably shares each other’s burdens and the weight of glory.
Listen to our hearts’ longings for the healing of our world.
Guide us in living out our mission to to be a
welcoming, prayerful, caring community

actively sharing the love of God . . .

Knowing you are hearing us better than we are speaking,

we offer these prayers in all the holy names of God,
Amen+

 

Prayer for the Pandemic

Loving God, hasten the day when the virus will have run its course; quicken scientists to develop medications and vaccines; call out the best instincts of your people- love, neighborliness, compassion, and a sense of caring for every member of your beloved community on Earth. We pray out of the depths to you, O God of hope. Amen.

 

Prayers are asked for…..

The Church

Justin, the Archbishop of Canterbury, Michael, our Presiding Bishop, Michael, our 

Bishop and Michael, our Vicar….In the Anglican cycle of prayer we pray for The Church of the Province of Central AfricaThe Diocese of Argentina – The Anglican Church of South America, The Diocese of Northern Argentina – The Anglican Church of South AmericaThe Diocese of Argyll & The Isles – The Scottish Episcopal Church, The Diocese of Arizona – The Episcopal Church, The Diocese of Arkansas, The Diocese of Armagh – The Church of Ireland....In the Diocesan Cycle of PrayerSt. Thomas of Canterbury, Albuquerque. We also pray for St. James, Alpine, St. Stephens, Ft. Stockton, Santa Inez, Terlingua, Chapel of St. Mary & St. Joseph, Lajitas, and the Marfa and Alpine Ministerial Alliances…. For Connor Travis and the ministry of Young Life

 

For Our Leaders

For Joseph, our president, Greg our Governor, Manny our mayor and the mayors and city managers of our surrounding communities…. For Joe, our president-elect and 

Kamala, our vice president-elect and all newly elected officials as well as our elected officials in Washington and all who exercise authority at any level of government. For all who struggle to make a more just society

St. Paul’s Prayer Box and Prayer Wall

Living out our mission to be a welcoming, prayerful, caring community actively sharing the love of God….On our wallTo day I Pray: Peace...our President...Healing...for my business...for accountability...for Tom and family...For truth and light...Rudy with ALS....Today I Hope: Happy...Joyous...Free...health and healing for all...Blessing of grandchildren...for my child...For the future...safety of Jorhey...Today I Thank: my family...thankful for my daughter...sobriety...chosen family...opportunities/expanded community...my family +community...family & health...For a safe trip...For a home, work...my sister...The Earth...Jesus,... Heavenly Father...St. Paul's....Merry Christmas....God for Camillia my friend....His grace, patience, guidance...Prayer Box: For our long trip and our families far away...Becca's recovery from a broken ankle...For our family friend "R" who is facing serious surgery on October 1...Mariano Faiardo reecovery from cancer (my father)...Victor Amram, grandfather of 92 that is struggling for strength...Zanfini...

 

St. Paul’s Prayer List

Gail, Patty, Holly,  D'Ette, Merit and the Fowlkes family, James, Shere, Kevin and Jay, Lesly, Lila, Melodie, Mimi, Pat & Mary, the Vana Family… FOR Jeanie Olivas, Vijaya, Frank, Larry, Jack Risen, Kathryn Anschutz, Sue Ellen, Kelly, Brian Hutchins who have cancer… for Michael Simpson, Lee Ann,. for James, Brian Neal & Jacob, Linda, for Jenny, Megan and Elizabeth, for David who has MSA, Frank, for Ralph...Kathleen….Bishop Jerry and Jane Lamb…Jessie Ann….Francisco Javier Del  Hierro Vega, Juan Paul Del Hierro Vega, Arlyn Del Hierro…..Canon Carole McGowan... Help us remember that whereas some sections of the media are skewed and biased or even untruthful, Your essence is truth and light...for the media that  they present with truth, compassion and unbias... Douglas...for those with the coronavirus, those living in isolation because of the virus, caretakers and researchers to find a cure and a vaccine...MEMBERS OF THE TIPTON FAMILY...Amanda, a nurse on the frontlines in New York City....Debbie Hamilton who is a paramedic on the front lines in San Antonio....Dawn who has cancer..Airman First Class Sidney Davis who is overseas.....Andrea, a nurse recovered from COVID-19 and back at treating others, Safe travels, Protection from COVID-19,...Ellen Boyd. After 15 years of being cancer free, her cancer has returned.... Itze who is in hospice...For the Kinney-Morrow family...Father Phil West recovering from a stroke...Gary Stonum who has Covid-19....for Katie who is dying.....Aurie....Mary Steele who is battling stage 3 breast Cancer...Kellie and Rick on their journey together....Pearl....Paul Woods, Cancer....Dorothy Swanson who fell and now has the Coronavirus....Lee Ann....Kaley Bowerman & Judah...Kristy Kimmell...Burt and Doris Ann Brownfield.......Corina & Carlos and their daughters, Iris and Lily....Rudy and Allison....Roberto who has cancer and Julia his wife....Luane Porter...Carol Janocek who has cancer...Layne who is struggling....Marina Z with Covid-19....Yvonne who is in hospice care...Roger Cribdin, Cancer medical trial...Markus who had a heart attack....

 

Those who have died

Sue Ferrell, Steve Hilton, Gina Abbott, Clara May Bogel Cowsar & John D Cowsar, Victims of Covid-19,...

World News This Week in Prayer

 

I have decided to stick with love… Hate is too great a burden to bear.  

~~Martin Luther King

Oh Lord, your house is built with understanding and compassion – it is our quiet center.  If only we could grasp its power. In small agitations and overwhelming calamities, during times of lament and great injustices help us to turn toward Love.

We pray for the people of Myanmar as the military coup places tanks in the major cities shutting down free speech and the internet. We see photos of monks wearing surgical masks, silently holding signs. The world is watching as journalists are incarcerated and the State Counselor and Foreign Minister Aung San Suu Kyi is held incommunicado. We continue to pray for the Rohingya people who have suffered genocide, displacement, and many horrors. Help us to stick with love.

Create in us a yearning for justice as we read and watch and digest the impeachment trial proceedings and their conclusion in the United States this past weekend. Help us to understand the power of our words. We continue to pray for the police officers who defended the US capitol at great cost. Support their families and communities as we continue to discern what happened.

We hear of heightened extrajudicial killings taking place in the Philippines during the pandemic as reported by Human Rights Watch. We pray for our elected leaders around the world.

The U.S.A. news heralds the release of Joe Ligon, 82-years old, sentenced as a juvenile in 1953 at the age of 15 to life imprisonment. “I like to be free,” he said. His attorney worked for his full release without parole after serving 68 years. Lord we ask you to protect those who defend justice. Walk with those who transition from incarceration to community. Sustain those who prepare the way of re-entry with compassion and forethought. Protect our children of color. Help us to dismantle racism and white supremacy that is pervasive in our institutions and world. Open our eyes to the over 2,121,600 men, women and youth imprisoned in the USA – the highest in the world.[i]

Lord you witness families, states and countries divided even as a pandemic ravages and has killed 2,418,543 people[ii] across 192 nations. How much suffering can we endured? We see persons of color, women as essential workers, the impoverished, those with disabilities and the imprisoned carrying a disproportionate burden. We pray especially for the people and healthcare workers of Mexico and Yemen where the death per case diagnosed with COVID-19 ratios are the highest in the world.

Sometimes it feels like we are in this alone, powerless, cowering in some place without direction. In these moments bring your understanding. Forgive us for the things we should have done, might have done, the “if only” we toss about. Help us to consider the times when we remained silent, the places in our heart where we indeed nurtured hatred. Justice is hard work, awkward and sometimes painful. We stray, we recommit, we reconsider, we vow. It does feel like sacrifice. We feel the pressure of time. We ask ourselves how long? Return us to the quiet center that we may discern your will to work among the most vulnerable and those that need our collective voice in the world.

We are glad of heart as the Great Backyard Bird Count took place this past weekend around the world. We observe the ancient great migrations, journeys that transcend borders and boundaries and hemispheres! We take delight in our bird feeders, yet we are witnessing extinctions, habitat destruction, and the attack of the Migratory Bird Treaty Act itself.

As we entered Lent in worship on this past Ash Wednesday, we are reminded of our physical needs our need for heat and electricity, shelter and food, safety and access to rescue services. We are reminded of our vulnerabilities in conflict, pandemic, and climate disruption. And we are so very aware of how much we have lost this past year, given up, or had taken away from us — Lord have mercy. We are also compelled to look at what we cling to needlessly, harbor at great cost and burden. Help us, Dear God, to let go of what is no longer of use to us, to hold close the treasure of one another, and in all things to stick with love.

Amen+

 


A Lenten Devotional 2021

Meditations and invitations by Father Justin Gibson Illustrations by Sondra Jones

Using this Devotional

This devotional is meant to be a companion for the Lenten journey. Each of the scripture readings are pulled from the daily office and feast day readings. The reflections and words of encouragement are my own. I hope you find this a thought provoking, contemplative, challenging and friendly correspondence. I am a pilgrim along the way with you, even if we are still at a distance.

Attached to the end of the daily devotional are some resources and liturgies for Stations of the Cross and Holy Week. These are intended for use at home to add another layer to your celebrations and devotions. Many thanks to Sondra Jones for drawing the plates for the stations.

Blessings on your journey.
May God be revealed on your travels.

Fr. Justin+ Lent 2021

February 23

For if you forgive others their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. -Matthew 6

Forgiveness is the prayer of Jesus. It is central to the Lord’s Prayer and it is the last words that Jesus speaks before he dies. When you forgive someone, you repair the relationship. When you forgive yourself, you begin to heal. Where is forgiveness missing in your life? Where is it missing in your relationships?

In order to forgive, you have to open the lines of communication. Today is a good day to send someone a card, a note, a text. It is a good day to make amends and repair. Forgiveness is tough work of the heart, but it is also medicine for the soul and the world.

Open the door.+



February 24

 

This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you.
-John 15

Love is the way. It is the way that Jesus paved and the path he left for us to follow. In this four-letter-word is a lifetime of work. With your words, speak love to someone. It feels good to love and be loved. With your actions, show the same. With the meditations of your heart, cultivate love from within.

Love each other.+
 


February 25

Queen Esther, seized with deadly anxiety, fled to the Lord. -Esther 14

Where do we turn when anxiety seizes us? We have many tools to help us cope with anxiety. Some of these tools include medicine, therapy and compassionate friends to listen to our struggles. Many of our psalms are written from a place of deep anxiety in an effort to connect with and be heard by God. Offering the things you are anxious about to God is another tool that can help. Write down the things that give you anxiety, pray with them and find comfort in God’s loving presence.

Name them. Give them to God.+



February 26

 

My soul waits for the Lord, more than watchmen for the morning, more than watchmen for the morning. -Psalm 130

A prayer: We wait, but our souls are uneasy. We wait because we long for you Lord. We long to be in your presence; to let the dark night pass and watch the sun break over our eyes. Be near to us Lord. Be near to our hearts. Let our patience be courageous and let our courage be filled with your love.+

Longing for God is a prayer. Write a prayer today.+

February 27

Today you have obtained the Lord’s agreement: to be your God. -Deuteronomy 26

The people made a covenant with God and God made a covenant with the people. The people made an agreement that they would ‘walk in God’s ways’ and submit their lives. God desires relationship and within a relationship there are vows to uphold. It is important to keep our commitments and hold ourselves accountable. One way of practicing this spiritual covenant relationship is to keep a rule of life. Some rules, like that of St. Benedict, are long and detailed, but they can also be simple. Write a rule that will help you keep up your relationship with God (ie. I will spend five minutes in silence every morning).

Be in relationship daily.+

February 28

Get behind me, Satan!
For you are setting your mind not on divine things but on human things.
-Mark 8

These words to Peter always sound harsh. Peter was well intentioned, but he had let himself get in the way. What things are getting in the way for you? What things are diverting your attention away from God?

We are wise to see ourselves in Peter. Like the apostle, we can sometimes get in the way of God’s work. Today is a good day to be an attentive listener. Listen before you speak; pay attention before you dismiss someone; get out of the way. Sometimes in order to focus on heavenly things we have to step back.

Listen first.+

March 1

If anyone strikes you on the cheek, offer the other also.
-Luke 6

Jesus never resorted to violence. There was not violence by Jesus in any word or action on the way to the cross. But, there is a big difference between being non-violent and getting pushed around. Jesus challenged the oppressive powers both of religion and the political sphere. He challenged them as a means to change them.

How might we stand against oppressive powers in ways that are non-violent? The civil rights movement made creative use of sit-ins, boycotts and marches. It is relentless work to be non-violent, but it is the way that leads change. Find creative waystochallengeviolenceandoppression;w​ herethereishatred, let us sow love.

Hold your ground in love.+

March 2

I know every bird in the sky,
and the creatures of the fields are in my sight. -Psalm 50

What does it mean to be known? What does it mean to be known as a member of creation? Scripture tells us that God creates and knows every part of creation; every plant in the field, bird of the air and bug in the dirt. Be creaturely today. What animals, birds, and bugs are sharing your space? Give them names and say hello. To be known is to be a friend. To be known is to be loved.

Find other creatures like you.+

March 3

The Son of Man came not to be served but to serve. -Matthew 20

How often do we dismiss those who are called to a work of service? Those whose jobs are to serve our needs and the needs of the community. Sometimes we see Jesus as a king and a prophet and a very important person, but he sees himself as a servant. How do you see yourself? What are your jobs and titles? (parent, spouse, profession, gardener, pet owner etc.)

How might those identities be thought of in relation to service? Everyone has aspects of their life that are devoted to service. Be proud of the ways in which your life serves others. It is in serving that we become more aware of our love for others. It is in serving that we become more like Jesus.

Servants are close to Jesus.+

March 4

Cursed are those who trust in mere mortals and make mere flesh their strength, whose hearts turn away from the Lord. -Jeremiah 17

We trust in many people. We trust in our elected officials, we trust in those who are physically strong, and we trust in those who have achieved fame. Why do we trust in these people?

Today is a good day to turn down the volume on the loud voices and opinions. You may turn off the news, put down the magazine and log off of social media. With the noises turned down, think about how you might trust more deeply in God? To trust in God means trusting that you are loved and cared for and in relation with a God who cares for you.

Trust is a relationship.+

March 5

The stone that the builders rejected has become the cornerstone. -Matthew 21

When colonialism finally started to crack and crumble in the Americas, there were large populations who had been excluded from power that began to see new opportunities. Liberation Theologians in South America reflected on this in terms of Jesus’ preference for the poor. It is a principle of preferential option and God’s care for the powerless.

Jesus came to proclaim Good News to the poor, the disenfranchised and those left out of the power structures. Jesus took up the work of God in the flesh. The challenge for us is to continue in that liberative work. It is work that puts power in the hands of those who are marginalized. What power might you be willing to give away? Whose voices might you elevate? Instead of giving to those in need we might adjust our framework so that we partner with people and communities who have been overlooked.

Liberation is a partnership.+

March 6

Son, you are always with me, and all that is mine is yours.
But we had to celebrate and rejoice, because this brother of yours was dead and has come to life;
he was lost and has been found.

-Luke 15

You may have guessed it, but this text from Luke comes from the parable of the Prodigal Son. The parable may be more aptly named “The Parable of the Good Father.” It is a beautiful and challenging story about family relations, wayward characters and the arms-open quality of welcoming that is portrayed by the father. Read the full parable in Luke 15 and see who speaks to you. How would you rename the parable?

Rethink grace.+

March 7

I am the Lord your God,
who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of slavery. -Exodus 20

Passover is just a few weeks away. These words from Exodus are central to Jewish identity and central to the celebration of Passover. The crossing of the Red Sea was crossing the threshold of being a slave to being free. The Red Sea was the Mason-Dixon line of freedom for Jewish people.

Jesus’ identity from birth to death is rooted in this leberative act of Passover. Jesus crossed the threshold of death as an act of liberation. It was a way to unbind the power of death and set humanity free.

We still have many people around the world who are bound in oppression and slavery. Even in our city are women and children forced into the sex slave trade. Today, pray for those who are enslaved to be set free. Learn how you can help and engage in continuing God’s work around us.

Pray, learn, break the chains.+

March 8

As the deer longs for the water-brooks, so longs my soul for you, O God. -Psalm 42

As the whole natural world yearns for sustenance and replenishment, so our souls long for God. If you are empty, if you are tired, if you are filled with the pandemic blues, set aside a few minutes for you and God. You may offer your prayers and petitions, you may offer your laments or thanksgivings, you may just sit quietly. How is God pulling and calling to you? What is deep within you that longs for God?

Longing is presence.+

March 9

Lord, if another member of the church sins against me, how often should I forgive?
-Matthew 18

Forgive. Forgive. Forgive. Peter asks Jesus how many times he should forgive someone who offends and the answer is ten times as many as you think. We talk about sin in a number of different ways. It is a transgression of rules, it is bad behavior, but there is a simple definition I would like to submit: to sin is to damage a relationship. Anything that we do to damage our relationship with each other, with our community and with God is a sinful action. How do you fix the damage done to a relationship? One way to ‘fix’ the damage is to forgive and to ask for forgiveness. Without forgiveness the relationship stays in the same damage that it was in.

Forgive and repair.+

March 10

But take care and watch yourselves closely. -Deuteronomy 4

It has now been 3 weeks since Ash Wednesday. How is your Lenten journey going? Are you still keeping your fasts? Are you still connecting with yourself, with God and with your neighbor? We are at the midway point in this season. It is time to take stock and measure your commitments. If something is not working, revise it. It is worthwhile to reevaluate while you are on the journey.

Pay attention to yourself.+

March 11

Come, let us bow down, and bend the knee, and kneel before the Lord our Maker. -Psalm 95

There is a posture to prayer. It is a posture of submission and openness. We bend to our knees and bow down to show our humility and reverence. We hold our hands up as an invitation. What is your favorite prayer posture? Do you put your hands together as you did when you were a child? Do you kneel? Do you have another body posture that is comfortable and reverential?

Find a position that works and pay attention to your body. How do your hands feel? Where is your head? Are your breaths short and choppy or are they slow and calm and long? Let this be a position that you come back to. It is your place of prayer within your own body. You are always inside of your own temple.

Bodies pray too.+

March 12

 

‘Hear, O Israel: the Lord our God, the Lord is one;

you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart,
and with all your soul,
and with all your mind,

and with all your strength.’ -Mark 12

Jesus is asked about the greatest commandment and he responds by quoting the ​schema​ from Deuteronomy 6. The greatest command is to love God with everything you have. The second commandment is to apply that same love to yourself and your neighbor. To love God is not just an emotion. Love includes the participation of your mind, your inner self, your body and your strength. Love is full body participation. Love is an action, a word, a thought and a prayer. Cultivate love in all its faculties today. Love God with everything you have and love yourself and neighbor too.

Be love.+

March 13

Open my lips, O Lord,
and my mouth shall proclaim your praise. -Psalm 51

You may recognize these words from our service of Morning Prayer. They are the first words said by the congregation in the service. If we were observing a monastic life, we would enter into the Great Silence at nighttime after compline (about 8 PM) and then in the morning our first words would be: O​ pen my lips, O Lord, and my mouth shall proclaim your praise.​

How are your days starting? Are they frazzled and hurried? Are they thoughtful and regular? Think about the way you start your mornings. What are the first words to come out of your mouth? We might turn our attention towards Psalm 51 and begin our day with a word of praise.

Begin with praise.+

March 14

God did not send the Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him. -John 3

God enters the world in Jesus’ body to open up a new way of life. It is not a way of punishment and condemnation, but a way of redemption and salvation. God came to save, redeem, and gather the world to Godself. Why do you think God wanted to save the world? Finish the sentence and pray with the words that you write.

God loves the world because_______________________________________________________________________________________________________.+

March 15

The wolf and the lamb shall feed together, the lion shall eat straw like the ox. -Isaiah 65

God’s vision of a reorganized earth is one in which there is no more death, war, famine, child loss or hunger. It is the inverse of what we see around us so much of the time. Do you think such a vision can be seen now? Could we live in a place where we take care of each other instead of hurting each other? It may be a naive thought, but I think we can see parts of such a vision now. What might we change in order to see the kingdom of God in our midst? What ways can you help the vision of God’s kingdon come to life?

Thy kingdom come.+

March 16

Do you want to be made well? John 5

“Do you want to be made well?” - Jesus says this to a man who has been sick for 38 eight years. All that time he had been sitting and waiting to enter the healing waters, but the opportunity always evaded him. Jesus tells the man to stand and walk and the man does. All those long years of waiting and healing was just a few words away.

What have you been waiting for? What healing have you longed for? Maybe it is time to speak, stand and be renewed. Maybe it is time to help someone else recover if you are well. We cannot enter into healing if we only sit by waiting.

Stand, be healed and help another.+

March 17

Can a woman forget her nursing-child,
or show no compassion for the child of her womb? -Isaiah 49

God speaks these words in consolation to Zion. God is portrayed as a mother who will not forget her child. What does it mean for you that God is like a mother? What traits of a mother come to your mind? Maybe you think of a mom who holds her child tight or feeds her hungry little one in the middle of the night. Think about these images and pray with them. Draw an image if you are able. In your mind, see the nurturing and life-sustaining motherly image of God. Feel her arms around you. She is a protector, a nurturer, a mother who is constantly present and concerned with her children.

God is a Mother.+

March 18

Moses implored the Lord his God... And the Lord changed his mind. -Exodus 32

In the Hebrew Scriptures, we see that the leaders, heroes, and prophets all argue with God. In this passage, God is upset with the stiff- necked people of Israel and Moses pleads his case against God’s anger. These encounters with God depict a real relationship between the divine and the people. What arguments do you need to have with God? Where do you see God’s presence and justice lacking? Write out your concerns, say them in a prayer, argue your case. You might just find consolation in the process and a new aspect to your relationship with God.

Argue with God.+

March 19 Feast of St. Joseph

When his parents saw him they were astonished. -Luke 2

Today is St. Joseph’s feast day! Our reading comes from the story of Jesus wandering off in the temple and his parents lose track of him. Joseph and Mary were worried, but they were also amazed to see their little boy at work with the teachers. Before Jesus could love and care for us, he was loved and cared for by his mom and dad. Let Joseph be warmth, protection and care for you today.

Jesus was loved.+

March 20

Let anyone who is thirsty come to me. -John 7

To be thirsty is to desire life abundant. What do you thirst for? What do you desire that cannot be quenched by anything less than God? Write a prayer or poem about the thirst you have.

I am a desert longing for God hold the cup
to my mouth and I will drink. Only You

bring life
to my drought. Quench me rain

down
a deluge

And fill my soul.+

March 21

Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me. -Psalm 51

We get clean by coming clean. We confess and God forgives. We make our confessions each week in church as a way to evaluate our wrongdoings and make amends. The purpose of confession is always to repair relationships. What relationships do you need to repair? Offer your confession out loud, in silence, with a priest or a friend and repair the relationships that are broken.

Lord have mercy.+

March 22

Susanna groaned and said, “I am completely trapped.” ...Then Susanna cried out with a loud voice, and said, “O eternal God, you know what is secret
and are aware of all things before they come to be.” -Susanna

“Woman, where are they? Has no one condemned you?” She said, “No one, sir.”
And Jesus said, “Neither do I condemn you.
Go your way, and from now on do not sin again.” -John 8

The story of Susanna is one that many of us have never read. It is an addition to the book of Daniel that many consider late. In the story, Susanna is blackmailed and has the choice to give in or face death. She cannot bear to give in and so she is condemned. Daniel is stirred by the Lord and foils the attempted murder. You probably recognize the second scripture from Jesus and the woman caught in adultery.

How often do we have the choice to do the right thing and just go with the crowd? How often do we see someone in a struggle and we cast stones with our words? In these stories, we find more than plots to murder. We see agency, the power of will, and the opportunity to forgive instead of condemn. Read

these stories today. What gives you hope in the story of Susanna? How can you be more like Jesus in the way he treats the woman?

Be strong to challenge.+

March 23

Let this be written for a future generation,
so that a people yet unborn may praise the Lord. -Psalm 102

Blessings often sit in time capsules. They wait for the next generation to open them. The same might be said of curses. During the pandemic, we have worried about our immediate existenceandsurvival,butmaybeitistimetothinkforward. What blessings are you sowing for tomorrow? What are we doing that will help the next generation of children continue to praise the Lord?

The praise of tomorrow begins today.+

March 24

If you continue in my word, you are truly my disciples; and you will know the truth, and the truth will make you free. -John 8

The ​word​ is a living thing. It is not ink on a page or somethingthatdeterioratesandfades.Thew​ ord​isthetruthof God’s goodness and love that we search for and unravel all the days of our lives.

What is the truth you know? It is time to write an affirmation of truth. Write something true of yourself. Write something true of God. Write something true of the discipleship you are called to.

Truth is power.+

March 25
Feast of the Annunciation

Then Mary said, "Here am I, the servant of the Lord.” -Luke 1

Today, Mary is told that she will give birth to a son. This son is destined to be a savior. Mary speaks to us as a woman whose world is being tossed upside down and yet her heart is open and her words are constant and ready. Mary embraces the Presence of God and becomes a servant-mother of a servant-son. Look for Mary today. Is she the mom that you see in passing? Does she sit comfortably in your own willingness to be present?

Here am I.+

March 26

O Lord, you have enticed me, and I was enticed;
you have overpowered me, and you have prevailed. -Jeremiah 20

Poets, prophets, martyrs and saints all speak of God in a lover’s tongue. God draws the heart in love and pursues the beloved. Divine love can be fierce like an earthquake or gentle like a whisper. It can rage like a fire and also hold you close in the long dark night. Find some imagery and language that speaks to you. Write it down as a prayer or poem. How does it feel to see and say those words? How is God like a lover to you?

God is Love.+

March 27

So from that day on they planned to put him to death. -John 11

Can you feel it? We are in the final stretch of Lent and tomorrow begins our journey into Holy Week. The tides are shifting; the prophesied end is near. When we enter into Holy Week, we will enter holy space and holy time. We will walk the way of the cross, wash the feet of our family and friends and ultimately, we will be present as Jesus is put to death.

Before we enter the next week of pilgrimage, we must take a final breath and prepare ourselves. Have you set time apart for Maundy Thursday, Good Friday, Holy Saturday, and Easter? Have you gathered your palms for tomorrow and your lilies for Easter Sunday? Take some time and look at the week ahead.

Get ready.+

March 28 Palm Sunday Passion Sunday

Blessed is the one who comes in the name of the Lord! -Mark 11

“Crucify him!” -Mark 15

It is hard to describe today...cognitive dissonance...whiplash...surreal...these are a few words that come to mind. The entry into Jerusalem rings out will bells, palms waving and shouts for joy. The scene quickly turns red as the crowd gathers around and demands that Jesus is crucified.

Usually, we are the crowd surrounding Jesus. We are the ones singing Hosanna and we are the ones condemning Jesus to death. Today is not an easy day to reconcile and there is no simple solution to solve the tension. All we might hope to do is sit with it. Be still. Be quiet. Can you hear the shouts for joy turn angry? Can you hear the palm leaves whistle past you as they become whips?

Be present.+ 

March 29 Monday in Holy Week

Mary took a pound of costly perfume made of pure nard, anointed Jesus' feet,
and wiped them with her hair. -John 12

Is there a more selfless picture of love and devotion than Mary wiping the perfumed feet of Jesus with her hair? It is a beautiful picture of love and devotion. She is anointing her friend before he enters the tomb. It might be easy this week to get busy with all the things you need to take care of, but let’s not forget to think outward. Be selfless today. Do something for someone out of pure love. You might send a note to a loved one or pay for a meal of a stranger. Today, be Mary. Be one act of kindness to someone else.

Love is a gift to give.+

March 30 Tuesday in Holy Week

"Sir, we wish to see Jesus." -John 12

We pull at Jesus' coat, we knock on the door, but soon he will be gone. It is a worthwhile daydream to think about what it would have meant to know Jesus. What would it have been like to see him, to walk with him? What was once present is not absent. Seek and you shall find; listen and you shall hear. Where do you see Jesus around you? Do you feel Jesus calling from within? Adjust your eyes today. See something you have never noticed. See Jesus in a new way.

Free your eyes.+

March 31 Wednesday in Holy Week

At supper with his friends, Jesus was troubled in spirit, and declared, "Very truly, I tell you, one of you will betray me." -John 13

In all the moments of Jesus’ life, we find ourselves most often at the table with him. We will be there tomorrow as he washes our feet. We are there weekly to commune with him. It is a moment of real vitality and presence for us to be at the table. But it was also a troubling moment for Jesus.

He sat with a friend who was going to sell him out and betray him. Jesus was troubled. Jesus was a real person with real feelings. It hurt him that a friend would treat him in such a way. What strengthens your faith knowing Jesus lived a life in the skin of humanity? The same body of emotions and strength that you have.

Incarnate.

April 1 MaundyThursday Foot-Washing and Agape Meal

At the Foot-Washing - ​These are the words of invitation for the foot washing. Set out a bowl of warm water with towels and invite each other to participate.
Fellow servants of our Lord Jesus Christ: On the night before his death, Jesus set an example for his disciples by washing their feet, an act of humble service. He taught that strength and growth in the life of the Kingdom of God come not by power, authority, or even miracle, but by such lowly service.

Therefore, I invite you who share in the royal priesthood of Christ, to come forward, that we may recall whose servant we are by following the example of our Master. Come remembering his admonition that what will be done for us is also to be done by us to others, for “a servant is not greater than his master, nor is one who is sent greater than the one who sent him. If you know these things, blessed are you if you do them.”

OverWine-P​rayer for the wine.
Blessed are you, O Lord our God, King of the universe. You create the fruit of the vine; and on this night you have refreshed us with the cup of salvation in the Blood of your Son Jesus Christ. Glory to you for ever and ever. Amen.

OverBread-P​rayer for the bread.
Blessed are you, O Lord our God, King of the universe. You bring forth bread from the earth; and on this night you have given us the bread of life in the Body of your Son Jesus Christ. As grain scattered upon the earth is gathered into one loaf, so gather your Church in every place into the kingdom of your Son. To you be glory and power for ever and ever. Amen.

Over the Other Foods - ​Prayer over the other foods.
Blessed are you, O Lord our God, King of the universe. You have blessed the earth to bring forth food to satisfy our hunger. Let this food strengthen us in the fast that is before us, that following our
Savior in the way of the cross, we may come to the joy of his resurrection. For yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory, now and for ever. Amen.

During the meal or toward its close, a person appointed reads the seventeenth chapter of the Gospel according to John. The agapé concludes with a psalm, such as Psalm 69:1-23, or with a song, or with a prayer, or with a blessing or dismissal.

Maundy Thursday Bread Recipe Recipe for 8 loaves-single batch


      

7/8 cup of warm (not hot) water 1pkg of yeast (rapid rise is fine) 3 TBLS honey
1 1/2 TBLS canola oil

1/2 teaspoon salt
2 2/3 cup whole wheat flour Preheat oven to 350 degrees

1. Mix warm water, honey, and yeast. Let sit for 10 minutes to allow yeast to act.
2. Mix in oil and salt.
3. Add flour and mix until ingredients are well moistened. Knead mixture until a dough ball forms. ( I use the mixer with the dough hook until well mixed without kneading dough)

4. Cover with cloth and let rise until doubled in size (approximately 1-1 1/2 hours)
5. Roll out half of the dough to approximately 1/4 to 1/2 inch thickness.
6. Cut circles (at least four inches in diameter) out and place on non-stick cookie sheet, or use parchment paper on regular cookie sheet. You may also use a cooking stone. You can use a small coffee can to cut out the circles, or find a cookie cutter of the right size. It doesn’t need to be exact, but try not to make the diameter less than 4 inches. Repeat step 5 with remaining dough. 7. Using a knife, score a cross (“X”) on the loaf.

8.Let the loaves rise for 10 minutes. 9.Bake at 350 for 10-12 minutes.
10.Let loaves cool completely on wire rack

April 2 Good Friday

Surely he has borne our infirmities and carried our diseases;
yet we accounted him stricken, struck down by God, and afflicted. -Isaiah 52

This is the darkest day of the year. Good Friday is a profoundly difficult day, but it still calls to us every year. It pulls at us and begs us to be present. The ground beneath us sighs heavily as we carry our pilgrims’ cross. Find a time and a space to walk the Way of the Cross. There is a liturgy at the end of the devotional for you to use. If you can go no further than your home, then let your home be the place of pilgrimage.

Blessings for the journey.+

 

April 3 Holy Saturday Easter Vigil

They took the body of Jesus
and wrapped it with the spices in linen cloths. -John 19

He has been raised; he is not here. -Mark 16

The day begins in silence. Jesus has been taken from the cross and laid in the tomb. Jesus is dead. The disciples have scattered. All is quiet. In the darkness of limbo, a candle begins to flicker. The gate that led to death is pulled back. An empty tomb is revealed. The linen cloths lie folded in place.

Saturday in Holy week is a thin place. It is the twilight moment when the fabric of the universe is torn and sewn together again. What has connected with you on this journey? Take a moment to catalogue the journey you have been on. Was it the silence that inspired you? Or maybe walking, or writing a poem/prayer? Where were the places that brought heaven ever closer? Take those thin places with you. They are fertile ground that you can till over again.

Be known to us Lord.+

April 4 Easter

“I have seen the Lord” -John 20

The sun is rising, lean in. Today is a radiant day of gladness. Sing out loud, dance in the garden, break your fast and make a feast! Be the smile that lights up the world. Be the voice of encouragement to those around. Be the love that is Easter.

Shine!+


 

The Way of the Cross

Opening Devotions
In the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.

Amen. +
Lord, have mercy. Christ, have mercy.
Lord, have mercy. Presider and People
Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy Name,
thy kingdom come,
thy will be done,
on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those
who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation, and deliver us from evil.

V. We will glory in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ:
R. In whom is our salvation, our life and resurrection.
Let us pray. (Silence)
Assist us mercifully with your help, O Lord God of our salvation, that we may enter with joy upon the contemplation of those mighty acts, whereby you have given us life and immortality; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
The procession goes to the First Station.

 

First Station
Jesus is condemned to death

We adore you, O Christ, and we bless you: Because by your holy cross you have redeemed the world. As soon as it was morning, the chief priests, with the elders and scribes, and the whole council, held a consultation; and they bound
Jesus and led him away and delivered him to Pilate. And they all condemned him and said, “He deserves to die.” When Pilate heard these words, he brought Jesus out and sat down on the judgment seat at a place called the Pavement, but in the Hebrew, Gabbatha. Then he handed Jesus over to them to be crucified.

V. God did not spare his own Son: R. But delivered him up for us all.

Let us pray. (Silence)
Almighty God, whose most dear Son went not up to joy but first he suffered pain, and entered not into glory before he was crucified: Mercifully grant that we, walking in the way of the cross, may find
it none other than the way of life and peace; through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord. Amen.

Holy God, Holy and Mighty, Holy Immortal One, Have mercy upon us.


  

Second Station Jesus takes up his Cross

We adore you, O Christ, and we bless you: Because by your holy cross you have redeemed the world. Jesus went out, bearing his own cross, to the place called the place of a skull, which is called in Hebrew, Golgotha. Although he was a Son, he learned obedience through what he suffered. Like a lamb he was led to the slaughter; and like a sheep that before its shearers is mute, so he opened not his mouth. Worthy is the Lamb who was slain, to receive power and riches and wisdom and strength and honor and glory and blessing.

V. The Lord has laid on him the iniquity of us all: R. For the transgression of my people was he stricken.

Let us pray. (Silence)
Almighty God, whose beloved Son willingly endured the agony and shame of the cross for our redemption: Give us courage to take up our cross and follow him; who lives and reigns for ever and ever. Amen.

Holy God, Holy and Mighty, Holy Immortal One, Have mercy upon us.


  

Third Station Jesus falls the first time

We adore you, O Christ, and we bless you: Because by your holy cross you have redeemed the world. Christ Jesus, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped; but emptied himself, taking the form of a servant, and was born in human likeness. And being found in human form he humbled himself and became obedient unto death, even death on a cross. Therefore God has highly exalted him, and bestowed on him the name which is above every name. Come, let us bow down, and bend the knee, and kneel before the Lord our Maker, for he is the Lord our God.

V. Surely he has borne our griefs: R. And carried our sorrows.

Let us pray. (Silence)
O God, you know us to be set in the midst of so many and great dangers, that by reason of the frailty of our nature we cannot always stand upright: Grant us such strength and protection as may support us in all dangers, and carry us through all temptations; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Holy God, Holy and Mighty, Holy Immortal One, Have mercy upon us.


  

Fourth Station
Jesus meets his afflicted mother

We adore you, O Christ, and we bless you: Because by your holy cross you have redeemed the world. To what can I liken you, to what can I compare you, O daughter of Jerusalem? What likeness can I use to comfort you, O virgin daughter of Zion? For vast as the sea is your ruin. Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted. The Lord will be your everlasting light, and your days of mourning shall be ended.

V. A sword will pierce your own soul also: R. And fill your heart with bitter pain.

Let us pray. (Silence)
O God, who willed that in the passion of your Son a sword of grief should pierce the soul of the Blessed Virgin Mary his mother: Mercifully grant that your Church, having shared with her in his
passion, may be made worthy to share in the joys of his resurrection; who lives and reigns for ever and ever. Amen.

Holy God, Holy and Mighty, Holy Immortal One, Have mercy upon us.


  

Fifth Station
The Cross is laid on Simon of Cyrene

We adore you, O Christ, and we bless you: Because by your holy cross you have redeemed the world. As they led Jesus away, they came upon a man of Cyrene, Simon by name, who was coming in from the country, and laid on him the cross to carry it behind Jesus. “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me; for my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.”

V. Whoever does not bear his own cross and come after me: R. Cannot be my disciple.

Let us pray. (Silence)
Heavenly Father, whose blessed Son came not to be served but to serve: Bless all who, following in his steps, give themselves to the service of others; that with wisdom, patience, and courage, they may
minister in his Name to the suffering, the friendless, and the needy; for the love of him who laid down his life for us, your Son our Savior Jesus Christ. Amen.

Holy God, Holy and Mighty, Holy Immortal One, Have mercy upon us.


  

Sixth Station
A woman wipes the face of Jesus

We adore you, O Christ, and we bless you: Because by your holy cross you have redeemed the world. We have seen him without beauty or majesty, with no looks to attract our eyes. He was despised and rejected by men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief; and as one from whom men hide their faces, he was despised, and we esteemed him not. His appearance was so marred, beyond human semblance, and his form beyond that of the children of men. But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities; upon him was the chastisement that made us whole, and with his stripes we are healed.

V. Restore us, O Lord God of hosts:
R. Show the light of your countenance, and we shall be saved.

Let us pray. (Silence)
O God, who before the passion of your only-begotten Son revealed his glory upon the holy mountain: Grant to us that we, beholding by faith the light of his countenance, may be strengthened to bear our cross, and be changed into his likeness from glory to glory; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Holy God, Holy and Mighty, Holy Immortal One, Have mercy upon us.


  

Seventh Station Jesus falls a second time

We adore you, O Christ, and we bless you: Because by your holy cross you have redeemed the world. Surely, he has borne our griefs and carried our sorrows. All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the Lord has laid on him the iniquity of us all. He was oppressed, and he was afflicted, yet he opened not his mouth. For the transgression of my people was he stricken.

V.Butasforme,Iamawormandnoman: R. Scorned by all and despised by the people.

Let us pray. (Silence)
Almighty and everliving God, in your tender love for the human race you sent your Son our Savior Jesus Christ to take upon him our nature, and to suffer death upon the cross, giving us the example of his great humility: Mercifully grant that we may walk in the way of his suffering, and also share in his resurrection; who lives and reigns for ever and ever. Amen.

Holy God, Holy and Mighty, Holy Immortal One, Have mercy upon us.


  

Eighth Station
Jesus meets the women of Jerusalem

We adore you, O Christ, and we bless you: Because by your holy cross you have redeemed the world. There followed after Jesus a great multitude of the people, and among them were women who bewailed and lamented him. But Jesus turning to them said, “Daughters of Jerusalem, do not weep for me, but weep for yourselves and for your children.”

V. Those who sowed with tears: R. Will reap with songs of joy.

Let us pray. (Silence)
Teach your Church, O Lord, to mourn the sins of which it is guilty, and to repent and forsake them; that, by your pardoning grace, the results of our iniquities may not be visited upon our children and our children’s children; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Holy God, Holy and Mighty, Holy Immortal One, Have mercy upon us.


  

Ninth Station Jesus falls a third time

We adore you, O Christ, and we bless you: Because by your holy cross you have redeemed the world. I am the man who has seen affliction under the rod of his wrath; he has driven and brought me into darkness without any light. He has besieged me and enveloped me with bitterness and tribulation; he has made me dwell in darkness like the dead of long ago. Though I call and cry for help, he shuts out my prayer. He has made my teeth grind on gravel, and made me cower in ashes. “Remember, O Lord, my affliction and bitterness, the wormwood and the gall!”

V. He was led like a lamb to the slaughter:
R. And like a sheep that before its shearers is mute, so he opened not his mouth.

Let us pray. (Silence)
O God, by the passion of your blessed Son you made an instrument of shameful death to be for us the means of life: Grant us so to glory in the cross of Christ, that we may gladly suffer shame and loss for the sake of your Son our Savior Jesus Christ. Amen.

Holy God, Holy and Mighty, Holy Immortal One, Have mercy upon us.


  

Tenth Station
Jesus is stripped of his garments

We adore you, O Christ, and we bless you: Because by your holy cross you have redeemed the world. When they came to a place called Golgotha (which means the place of a skull), they offered him wine to drink, mingled with gall; but when he tasted it, he would not drink it. And they divided his garments among them by casting lots. This was to fulfill the scripture which says, “They divided my garments among them; they cast lots for my clothing.”

V. They gave me gall to eat:
R. And when I was thirsty they gave me vinegar to drink.

Let us pray. (Silence)
Lord God, whose blessed Son our Savior gave his body to be whipped and his face to be spit upon: Give us grace to accept joyfully the sufferings of the present time, confident of the glory that shall be
revealed; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Holy God, Holy and Mighty, Holy Immortal One, Have mercy upon us.


  

Eleventh Station Jesus is nailed to the Cross

We adore you, O Christ, and we bless you: Because by your holy cross you have redeemed the world. When they came to the place which is called The Skull, there they crucified him; and with him they crucified two criminals, one on the right, the other on the left, and Jesus between them. And the scripture was fulfilled which says, “He was numbered with the Transgressors.”

V. They pierce my hands and my feet: R. They stare and gloat over me.

Let us pray. (Silence)
Lord Jesus Christ, you stretched out your arms of love on the hard wood of the cross that everyone might come within the reach of your saving embrace: So clothe us in your Spirit that we, reaching forth our hands in love, may bring those who do not know you to the knowledge and love of you; for the honor of your Name. Amen.

Holy God, Holy and Mighty, Holy Immortal One, Have mercy upon us.


  

Twelfth Station Jesus dies on the Cross

We adore you, O Christ, and we bless you: Because by your holy cross you have redeemed the world. When Jesus saw his mother, and the disciple whom he loved standing near, he said to his mother, “Woman, behold your son!” Then he said to the disciple, “Behold your mother!” And when Jesus had received the vinegar, he said, “It is finished!” And then, crying with a loud voice, he said, “Father, into your hands I commend my spirit.” And he bowed his head, and handed over his Spirit.

V. Christ for us became obedient unto death: R. Even death on a cross.

Let us pray. (Silence)
O God, who for our redemption gave your only-begotten Son to the death of the cross, and by his glorious resurrection delivered us from the power of our enemy: Grant us so to die daily to sin, that we may evermore live with him in the joy of his resurrection; who lives and reigns now and for ever. Amen.

Holy God, Holy and Mighty, Holy Immortal One, Have mercy upon us.


  

Thirteenth Station
The body of Jesus is placed in the arms of his mother

We adore you, O Christ, and we bless you: Because by your holy cross you have redeemed the world. All you who pass by, behold and see if there is any sorrow like my sorrow. My eyes are spent with weeping; my soul is in tumult; my heart is poured out in grief because of the downfall of my people. “Do not call me Naomi (which means Pleasant), call me Mara (which means Bitter); for the Almighty has dealt very bitterly with me.”

V. Her tears run down her cheeks: R. And she has none to comfort her.

Let us pray. (Silence)
Lord Jesus Christ, by your death you took away the sting of death: Grant to us your servants so to follow in faith where you have led the way, that we may at length fall asleep peacefully in you and
wake up in your likeness; for your tender mercies’ sake. Amen.

Holy God, Holy and Mighty, Holy Immortal One, Have mercy upon us.


  

Fourteenth Station Jesus is laid in the tomb

We adore you, O Christ, and we bless you: Because by your holy cross you have redeemed the world. When it was evening, there came a rich man from Arimathea, named Joseph, who also was a disciple of Jesus. He went to Pilate and asked for the body of Jesus. Then Pilate ordered it to be given to him. And Joseph took the body, and wrapped it in a clean linen shroud, and laid it in his own new tomb, which he had hewn in the rock; and he rolled a great stone to the door of the tomb.

V. You will not abandon me to the grave: R. Nor let your holy One see corruption.

Let us pray. (Silence)
O God, your blessed Son was laid in a tomb in a garden, and rested on the Sabbath day: Grant that we who have been buried with him in the waters of baptism may find our perfect rest in his eternal and glorious kingdom; where he lives and reigns for ever and ever. Amen.

Holy God, Holy and Mighty, Holy Immortal One, Have mercy upon us.


  

Concluding Prayers before the Altar

Savior of the world, by your cross and precious blood you have redeemed us:
Save us, and help us, we humbly beseech you, O Lord.

Let us pray. (Silence)
We thank you, heavenly Father, that you have delivered us from the dominion of sin and death and brought us into the kingdom of your Son; and we pray that, as by his death he has recalled us to life, so by his love he may raise us to eternal joys; who lives and reigns with you, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

To Christ our Lord who loves us, and washed us in his own blood, and made us a kingdom of priests to serve his God and Father, to him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.


 



"SEE" YOU SUNDAY!


The Rev. Michael Wallens
Vicar - Saint Paul's Episcopal Church
P.O. Box 175, Marfa, Texas 79843

stpaulsmarfatx@gmail.com
Office - 915.239.7409  |  Cell - 214-862-7292

Parish website - www.stpaulsmarfa.org
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