Epiphany 7 02/20/22

Link to PDF

The Still Point: A Time of Meditation and Reflection

The Seventh Sunday after the Epiphany   

… At the still point of the turning world. Neither flesh nor fleshless;
Neither from nor towards; at the still point, there the dance is,
But neither arrest nor movement. And do not call it fixity,
Where past and future are gathered. Neither movement from nor towards,
Neither ascent nor decline. Except for the point, the still point,
There would be no dance, and there is only the dance…

T.S. Eliot, Burnt Norton

            Peace on each one who comes in need;

                        Peace on each one who comes in joy.

                        Peace on each one who offers prayers;

                        Peace on each one who offers song.

                        Peace of the Maker, Peace of the Son,

                        Peace of the Spirit, the Triune One. 

Opening Prayer

Spirit of energy, Spirit of change, in whose power Jesus is anointed to be the hope of the nations: pour yourself also upon us, without reserve or distinction, that we may have confidence and strength to plant your justice on the earth, through Jesus Christ.  Amen.

The Gospel                                                                                                 Luke 6:27-38

Jesus said, “I say to you that listen, Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who abuse you. If anyone strikes you on the cheek, offer the other also; and from anyone who takes away your coat do not withhold even your shirt. Give to everyone who begs from you; and if anyone takes away your goods, do not ask for them again. Do to others as you would have them do to you.” If you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? For even sinners love those who love them. If you do good to those who do good to you, what credit is that to you? For even sinners do the same. If you lend to those from whom you hope to receive, what credit is that to you? Even sinners lend to sinners, to receive as much again. But love your enemies, do good, and lend, expecting nothing in return. Your reward will be great, and you will be children of the Most High; for he is kind to the ungrateful and the wicked. Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful. “Do not judge, and you will not be judged; do not condemn, and you will not be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven; give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together, running over, will be put into your lap; for the measure you give will be the measure you get back.”

Poem: “This Morning I Pray for My Enemies”                         By Joy Harjo (b 1951)

And whom do I call my enemy?

An enemy must be worthy of engagement.

I turn in the direction of the sun and keep walking.

It’s the heart that asks the question, not my furious mind.

The heart is the smaller cousin of the sun.

It sees and knows everything.

It hears the gnashing even as it hears the blessing.

The door to the mind should only open from the heart.

An enemy who gets in, risks the danger of becoming a friend.

 

Meditation

Jesus challenges us over and over in his parables, sermons, and actions.  But “love your enemies” must be one of the most difficult teachings to hear, let alone to obey.  After all, he’s not just asking us to ignore or tolerate our enemies, but to actively love them, do good for them, and bless them.  In other words, we are to bless the very people whose actions provoked Jesus’s “woe” statements last week.  Today, more than ever, our many divisions draw multiple lines in the sand between “us” and “them.”  Harjo’s poem reminds us that we all are under the same sun’s light, and by extension created by the same God.  She also suggests that we create enemies in our mind, often without consulting the heart first.

Questions for Reflection

What do you find most challenging about Jesus’s teachings in today’s reading?

Has your heart ever conflicted with your mind?  What practices do you follow to re-orient toward the heart?

Picture someone you often see as an enemy. Imagine this person sharing the same sunlight as you and created by the same God.  What does this image do to the way you perceive this person?  Reading Jesus’s words again, how do you feel called to act?

 

Prayers

We bring before God someone whom we have met or remembered today

We bring to God someone who is hurting tonight and needs our prayer

We bring to God a troubled situation in our world

We bring to God, silently, someone whom we find hard to forgive or trust

We bring ourselves to God that we might grow in generosity of spirit, clarity of mind, and warmth of affection

We offer our thanks to God for the blessings in our lives

We name before God those who have died.

Gracious God, you hear all our prayers: those we speak aloud, those we hold in our hearts, and those prayers for which we have no words. Hear the prayers of your people, and grant them as may be best for us, for the sake of your holy name. Amen.            

Accept our thanks for all you have done, O God. Our hands were empty, and you filled them.

May Christ’s holy, healing, enabling Spirit be with us every step of the way, and be our guide as our road changes and turns, and the blessing of God our Creator, Redeemer and Giver of life be among us now and remain with us forever. Amen.

 Poem and Reflections this month offered by: Matt Bentley

Reflection From Mission and Outreach

The theme of this year’s Stewardship Campaign is Good Gifts: Received and Given. This theme fits with the mission of the Mission and Outreach Ministry, which states that it “seeks to renew the world by serving the needs of the marginalized through action, love, and compassion. The ministry collaborates with like-minded partners in the areas of poverty, homelessness, education, and physical & mental health both locally and globally.” Throughout its history at St. Andrew’s, Mission and Outreach has received good gifts from the parish and distributed those gifts to meet the needs of the marginalized through action, love, and compassion. Your continued support through giving during this campaign will allow Mission and Outreach to use the gifts God has given us, to do the work God is calling us to do.

 

 

Reflection From Acolytes

Acolyte Ministry

The Acolyte ministry helps to facilitate the liturgy, which contributes to a holistic space in which the community worships. We also represent the community and serve as a bridge from the congregation to the altar. Our ministry helps revere and celebrate life milestones at memorials, marriages, and baptisms. We are the face of the community at the altar. As we serve, the gifts that we both give and receive are abundant and plentiful.

Quotes from acolytes:

I have been approached by people that haven’t attended a service in a while, and they tell me how nice it is to see a familiar face at the altar. So I think we provide continuity.

Giving and receiving is what it’s all about.

I love helping congregants to be in a worshipful space.

Serving the wine gives me a special relationship with each congregant.

It has something to do with us all working together for the glory of God rather than as individuals.

People have expressed to me how excited they are to see a woman thurifer. It’s welcoming for some people who have never seen certain things happen at the altar.

In giving, we receive.

The gift that we get from the community is that they go out of their way to acknowledge our contribution to the service and give us positive feedback.

We all function as a team — acolytes, clergy, and congregation functioning together to worship God in a beautiful liturgical space.

We contribute to a greater whole, a physical presence that helps inspire everyone to be more enthusiastic and be aware of the necessity to contribute.

I love serving at the Still Point service; it is a lovely, fulfilling, and simple format.

Let’s delight in words!

Connie Klein is available to share her experience using poetry and literature for healing. During these challenging times it is particularly important to awaken the senses and to savor beauty.  By engaging with a poem or a short selection of prose or fiction we can release difficult feelings and find our common human experience. Writing prompts and other exercises are introduced with the literature, to explore and enjoy your own creative expression.  Connie is a licensed clinical social worker. Virtual time together can be scheduled by sending an email to connie@treeoflifetherapy.org.

The Interfaith Alliance News

Seeking the renewal of the world

St. Andrew’s is a partner congregation of The Interfaith Alliance.  With their expertise in social justice advocacy to guide us, we can stay up to date on meaningful actions that can be taken to advocate for social and racial justice.  They provide education and up-to-date information on ways to affect the state legislative process and to participate in other events to influence the renewal of the world, which is part of the mission of St. Andrew’s.  You can check this site regularly.  Especially during the legislative session, we will try to keep you apprised of current legislation and of suggested actions you could take to make a difference.

If you have any questions or would like to get more involved or receive the weekly emails we get from The Interfaith Alliance, please contact Sue Torfin at storfin9@gmail.com

INTERFAITH ALLIANCE NEWS

The Progressive Congregations Network of The Interfaith Alliance (of which St. Andrew’s is a member) is beginning their year with the following exciting event about religious liberty. I would encourage anyone interested in learning more about the state of religious liberty in our country, current challenges to religious liberty, and ways to have an impact to come to all or part of this event presented by the Baptist Joint Committee.  If you have questions about this event or general questions about our involvement with The Interfaith Alliance, please let me know.  I will be your representative through the year and will bring to you current news and ways to be involved.  ~  Sue Torfin
The First DENVER METRO Progressive Congregations Network (PCN) gathering is on September 14.
In the interest of sharing resources we are SO EXCITED to partner with Calvary Baptist and the Baptist Joint Committee through a Conversation & Training about Religious Liberty, an issue that is CENTRAL to our work at Interfaith Alliance.  This program has three parts and while you are encouraged to attend all of it, you are welcome to attend any parts that your schedule and interest allows:
1. A morning conversation: The Why –> 10:00-11:30
2. The PCN Lunch (Our Who) –> 11:30-1:00
3. Afternoon training: The What–>   1:00-3:00
4. Afternoon Training: The How –>  3:00-5:00
The PCN will meet over lunch.  
 
We hope you can attend the whole day!  But if you can only attend part, please consider prioritizing the PCN lunch so we can launch our year together as progressive voices of faith in the public sphere.
To learn more details about the day’s training, please use the event webpage
To register for all or part of the day, please use this Registration Link. Registration Link
Registration fees for members the PCN are covered by the Interfaith Alliance.  Please select that option for payment when you register.
Thanks to Rev. Morgan Caruthers-Fletcher for bringing this amazing group to Colorado and for the partnership between Calvary Baptist and Interfaith Alliance in making this program available to progressive people of faith in Colorado!
PULL OUT YOUR CALENDAR and save the dates for these Additional Upcoming Partner / PCN / Interfaith Alliance Opportunities: 
 
1. Saturday, September 21: Interfaith Langar (A free Community Indian Meal celebrating Equality and Diversity) from 11-2 in Liberty Park (1440 Lincoln).  Check our the event webpage to volunteer / donate.  Or just come and be fed!  🙂
2. Wednesday, September 25: PCN Networking Happy Hour in Denver – from 5:00-7:00pm  Location: TBD
3. Monday, October 28 – Interfaith Alliance of Colorado Force for Good Award Ceremony and Fundraiser

 

Holy Week & Easter 2019 at St. Andrew’s

 

During the week before Easter, we gather as a community to journey with Jesus to Jerusalem and the cross, before celebrating his Resurrection.  The ancient services in which we participate invite us to move away from the routine of our daily lives, and transport us, as we walk the way of the cross, to consider the love of God shown to us in the person of Jesus.  We invite you observe Holy Week with us by participating in this journey.

 

Tuesday, April 16

The Way of the Cross at 7:00 pm | On this evening we retrace Jesus’ journey, from his Trial before Pilate and his walk to Golgotha, carrying his Cross, to his Death upon that Cross.  Nursery Available.

 

Wednesday, April 17 

Tenebrae Service at 7:00 pm

An ancient service in which the lights are extinguished during the chanting of psalms of penitence and lament.  Nursery Available

 

Thursday, April 18 

Morning Prayer at 9:00 am

Maundy Thursday Service at 7:00 pm

On this night, the Church remembers Jesus’ Last Supper with his disciples. With humility, we reenact Jesus’ washing of his disciples’ feet, and we commemorate the Institution of the Lord’s  Supper as we celebrate the Eucharist in obedience to his command. Nursery Available

 

All night Vigil at the Altar of Repose

 

Friday, April 19        

Morning Prayer at 9:00 am

 

Good Friday Service at 12:00 noon

On this most solemn day, we gather at the hour Jesus hung on the cross to pray for the whole world, to venerate the cross, and to share the bread and wine consecrated the night before.  Nursery Available.

 

Friday, April 19

Downward to Darkness: Poems, Prayers, and Music for the night of Good Friday at 7:00pm

On this most solemn night, we’ll gather in the church for a time of meditation and reflection, guided by poetry and music appropriate to the occasion.  Nursery Available.

 

Saturday, April 20    

Holy Saturday Prayers at 9:00 am

Our community gathers on this morning in a simple prayer service to remember Jesus’ descent into the Grave after which we begin to clean and prepare the Church for the Easter Celebration.

 

The Great Vigil of Easter at 7:00 pm

This service, traditionally begun at or after sunset, begins the celebration of the Resurrection.  Following a tradition going back to the earliest days of the church, we participate in the Blessing of the New Fire, the Liturgy of the Word, Holy Baptism, and the first Eucharist of Easter, with    bells and glorious music.  Our celebration continues with a festive reception in the Undercroft.    Nursery Available.

 

Sunday, April 21         

Easter Sunday Services at 9:00 am and 11:00 am

The celebration of the Resurrection continues at these festive services. Nursery Available at both services.

 

No Still Point service at 5:30 pm.

 

Monday, April 22 

Parish Office will be closed.

 

HOLY WEEK & EASTER 2019 AT ST. ANDREW’S

During the week before Easter, we gather as a community to journey with Jesus to Jerusalem and the cross, before celebrating his Resurrection. The ancient services in which we participate invite us to move away from the routine of our daily lives, and transport us, as we walk the way of the cross, to consider the love of God shown to us in the person of Jesus. We invite you observe Holy Week with us by participating in this journey.

Tuesday, April 16

The Way of the Cross at 7:00 pm | On this evening we retrace Jesus’ journey, from his Trial before Pilate and his walk to Golgotha, carrying his Cross, to his Death upon that Cross.
Nursery Available

Wednesday, April 17

Tenebrae Service at 7:00 pm | An ancient service in which the lights are extinguished during the chanting of psalms of penitence and lament. Nursery Available

Thursday, April 18

Morning Prayer at 9:00 am

Maundy Thursday

Service at 7:00 pm
On this night, the Church remembers Jesus’ Last Supper with his disciples. With humility, we reenact Jesus’ washing of his disciples’ feet, and we commemorate the Institution of the Lord’s Supper as we celebrate the Eucharist in obedience to his command. Nursery Available

All night Vigil at the Altar of Repose

Friday, April 19

Morning Prayer at 9:00 am

Good Friday Service at 12:00 noon
On this most solemn day, we gather at the hour Jesus hung on the cross to pray for the whole world, to venerate the cross, and to share the bread and wine consecrated the night before.
Nursery Available

Downward to Darkness: Poems, Prayers, and Music for the night of Good Friday at 7:00pm
On this most solemn night, we’ll gather in the church for a time of meditation and reflection, guided by poetry and music appropriate to the occasion. Nursery Available

Saturday, April 20

Holy Saturday Prayers at 9:00 am
Our community gathers on this morning in a simple prayer service to remember Jesus’ descent into the Grave after which we begin to clean and prepare the Church for the Easter Celebration.

The Great Vigil of Easter at 7:00 pm
This service, traditionally begun at or after sunset, begins the celebration of the Resurrection. Following a tradition going back to the earliest days of the church, we participate in the Blessing of the New Fire, the Liturgy of the Word, Holy Baptism, and the first Eucharist of Easter, with bells and glorious music. Our celebration continues with a festive reception in the Undercroft. Nursery Available

Sunday, April 21

Easter Sunday Services at 9:00 am and 11:00 am
The celebration of the Resurrection continues at these festive services. Nursery Available at both services.

No Still Point service at 5:30 pm.

Monday, April 22

Parish Office will be closed.

The Season of Lent

Stations of the Cross in Lent

On each Friday in Lent at Noon, a brief, simple Stations of the Cross service will take place in the church.  The Stations of the Cross provide a meditation on Christ’s “way of sorrows,” following him from Pilate’s judgement seat to the cross and the grave.  The service will last approximately 20 minutes, and is a spoken version of the Stations of the Cross that is sung on Tuesday evening in Holy Week.  Share Our Lord’s path this Lent.  All are welcome.

Lenten Labyrinth

The season of Lent often uncovers new pathways of inward transformation in our spiritual lives. This year, our church is physically reflecting this spiritual journey with a temporary labyrinth installation, which will be available for the duration of Lent.  An evening prayer office will be recited each Monday during Lent from 4-5pm, followed by an open period of silence to pray and walk the labyrinth.  The labyrinth will also be available for prayer walks on Thursdays before Evensong and on Sundays before Still Point. All are encouraged to engage with this powerful contemplative and meditative discipline.

 

 

The Interfaith Alliance News

 

St. Andrew’s is a partner congregation of The Interfaith Alliance.  With their expertise in social justice advocacy to guide us, we can stay up to date on meaningful actions that can be taken to advocate for social and racial justice.  They provide education and up-to-date information on ways to affect the state legislative process and to participate in other events to influence the renewal of the world, which is part of the mission of St. Andrew’s.  You can check this site regularly.  Especially during the legislative session, we will try to keep you apprised of current legislation and of suggested actions you could take to make a difference.

If you have any questions or would like to get more involved or receive the weekly emails we get from The Interfaith Alliance, please contact Sue Torfin at storfin9@gmail.com or Betsy Hoover at betsyhoover@me.com.

 

An ongoing event is Faithful Tuesdays.  Every Tuesday during the legislative session a coalition of faith-based organizations organizes a rally in the north foyer of the capital from 12-1:00 focused on a particular social justice issue.  The schedule is below.

 

The Interfaith Alliance  –  Seeking the renewal of the world

 

The Interfaith Alliance provides education and up-to-date information on meaningful action we can take to advocate for social and racial justice in Colorado.  As a partner congregation, we can utilize TIA’s expertise and take steps to affect identified legislative bills.

Check this site for information on the process of current legislation, suggested actions you can take, and upcoming “how to” classes.

 

If you are interested, we want to hear from you!  Please email us for more information on getting involved, or to request the weekly TIA email.

Sue Torfin, storfin9@gmail.com

Betsy Hoover, betsyhoover@me.com

 

Faithful Tuesdays at the Capitol

Join individuals from a variety of faith-based organizations, including TIA, for a rally focused on a particular social justice issue.  Every Tuesday, March 5 – April 30, in the north foyer.

March 5 – Mile High Ministries: Affordable Housing

March 12 – Rocky Mountain Synod (ELCA): Financial Equity

March 19 – Colorado Catholic Conference

March 26 – The Episcopal Church in Colorado: Economic Justice

April 2 – Colorado Sikhs

April 9 – Together Colorado

April 16 – Interfaith Alliance of Colorado

April 23 – Organization TBD

April 30 – Together Colorado: Closing Ceremony

 

Following are four bills up for consideration at the state legislature with recommendations on how to have an impact if you want to take action on their progression.

#1)

HB19-1118: Extending Notice to a Tenant Before Eviction

 

Monday, March 11th HB19-1118 will be heard on the House Floor.

Contact your representative before Monday, March 11 asking them to PASS HB19-1118.

This bill would extend notice before a landlord can file eviction from three days to 10 days. While many landlords are flexible and understanding when life – unexpected car repairs, medical emergencies, and layoffs – happens, the goal of this bill is to codify the grace that most landlords already give so that all Colorado renters, especially the ones who are most vulnerable to homelessness, can rely on a consistent standard.

Renters’ protections in Colorado lag behind most other states across the country, especially regarding eviction notice; in fact, 28 states give more notice before eviction than Colorado in the case of unpaid rent, and 36 states provide more notice in the case of other lease violations.

Continue reading…

 

UPDATE:

The consumer resource site regarding lending alternatives has been updated.

 

#2)

SB19-182 – Death Penalty

Please contact our Senators and request their support of Senate Bill 182 to repeal the death penalty. http://leg.colorado.gov/bills/sb19-182

On Wednesday, the Senate Judiciary Committee voted to pass SB 182, a bill to end the death penalty in Colorado and replace it with life without the parole. Governor Polis has stated publicly that he will sign a repeal bill passed by the legislature.

The next step is the debate on the Senate floor, which could come as early as next week.  That is why we are being asked to call our Senators today.


Use this tool findmylegislator (type your zip code into the search function) to find the contact information for your senator and call him or her and ask them to PASS SB 182 http://leg.colorado.gov/bills/sb19-182.


 

If you live in District 20 or 28, your Senators are two that are unsure of how they will vote and have asked to hear from you as one of their constituents. Their information is located below.

 

Senate District 20

Senator Jessie Danielson

Email: jessie.danielson.senate@state.co.us 

Phone: 303-866-4856

 

Senate District 28

Senator Nancy Todd

Email: nancy.todd.senate@state.co.us 

Phone: 303-866-3432

 

More Material on this Bill

 

 

#3)

HB19-1039 – Jude’s Law, Gender ID

On Wednesday, March 13 HB19-1039 will be heard before the Senate Committee.

Under current law, a person born in Colorado who seeks a new birth certificate from the registrar of vital statistics (state registrar) to reflect a change in gender designation must obtain a court order indicating that the sex of the person has been changed by surgical procedure and ordering that the gender designation on the birth certificate be amended, and the person must obtain a court order with a legal name change. The bill repeals that provision and creates new requirements for the issuance of birth certificates in cases of changes to gender designation or for an intersex individual.

More about this Bill

Please contact Committee Members to PASS Jude’s Law – HB19-1039

Senator Pete Lee – Chair

303-866-6364

pete.lee.senate@state.co.us

 

Senator Julie Gonzales – Vice Chair

303-866-4862

julie.gonzales.senate@state.co.us

 

Senator John Cooke

303-866-4452

john.cooke.senate@state.co.us

 

Senator Bob Gardner

303-866-4880

bob.gardner.senate@state.co.us

 

Senator Robert Rodriguez

303-866-4852

Robert.rodriguez.senate@state.co.us

 

 

#4)

HB19-1129 – Prohibit Gay Conversion Therapy for a Minor

On Monday, March 18 HB19-1129 will be heard before the Senate Committee.

The bill prohibits a licensed physician specializing in psychiatry or a licensed, certified, or registered mental health care provider from engaging in conversion therapy with a patient under 18 years of age. A licensee who engages in these practices is subject to disciplinary action by the appropriate licensing board. The bill also makes the advertising or practice of conversion therapy by a physician or mental health care provider a deceptive trade practice under the “Colorado Consumer Protection Act”. “Conversion therapy” means efforts to change an individual’s sexual orientation, including efforts to change behaviors or gender expressions or to eliminate or reduce sexual or romantic attraction or feelings toward individuals of the same sex.

Please Contact Committee Members to PASS HB19-1129

Senator Mike Foote – Chair

303-866-5291

mike.foote.senate@state.co.us

 

Senator Lois Court – Vice Chair

303-866-4861

lois.court.senate@state.co.us

 

Senator Rhonda Fields

303-866-4879

Rhonda.fields.senate@state.co.us

 

Senator Vicki Marble

303-866-4876

Vicki.marble.senate@state.co.us

 

Senator Jerry Sonnenberg

303-866-6360

jerry.sonnenberg.senate@state.co.us