Prelude:How bright appears the Morning Star by Dieterich Buxtehude
Welcome: Fr. John Burton
Hymn: H-497 "How bright appears the Morning Star"
Opening Acclamation BCP p. 355 Celebrant: Blessed be God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit People: And blessed be God's Kingdom, now and forever. Amen.
Collect for Purity: Almighty God, to you all hearts are open, all desires known, and from you no secrets are hid: Cleanse the thoughts of our hearts by the inspiration of your Holy Spirit; that we may perfectly love you, and worthily magnify your holy Name; through Christ our Lord. Amen.
Trisagion: Celebrant: Holy God Holy and Mighty Holy Immortal One, People: Have mercy upon us. Celebrant: The Lord be with you. People: And also with you.
The Liturgy of the Word Collect of the day: O God, who wonderfully created, and yet more wonderfully restored, the dignity of human nature: Grant that we may share the divine life of him who humbled himself to share our humanity, your Son Jesus Christ; who lives and reigns with you, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.
The First Reading:Jeremiah 31: 7-14 Maude March A reading from Jeremiah
Thus says the Lord: Sing aloud with gladness for Jacob, and raise shouts for the chief of the nations; proclaim, give praise, and say, "Save, O Lord, your people, the remnant of Israel." See, I am going to bring them from the land of the north, and gather them from the farthest parts of the earth, among them the blind and the lame, those with child and those in labor, together; a great company, they shall return here.
With weeping they shall come, and with consolations I will lead them back, I will let them walk by brooks of water, in a straight path in which they shall not stumble; for I have become a father to Israel, and Ephraim is my firstborn. Hear the word of the Lord, O nations, and declare it in the coastlands far away; say, "He who scattered Israel will gather him, and will keep him as a shepherd a flock."
For the Lord has ransomed Jacob, and has redeemed him from hands too strong for him. They shall come and sing aloud on the height of Zion, and they shall be radiant over the goodness of the Lord, over the grain, the wine, and the oil, and over the young of the flock and the herd; their life shall become like a watered garden, and they shall never languish again.
Then shall the young women rejoice in the dance, and the young men and the old shall be merry. I will turn their mourning into joy, I will comfort them, and give them gladness for sorrow. I will give the priests their fill of fatness, and my people shall be satisfied with my bounty, says the Lord.
The Word of the Lord Thanks be to God!
Psalm 84 in unisonJayne Ashworth 1 How dear to me is your dwelling, O Lord of hosts! * My soul has a desire and longing for the courts of the Lord; my heart and my flesh rejoice in the living God. 2 The sparrow has found her a house and the swallow a nest where she may lay her young; * by the side of your altars, O Lord of hosts, my King and my God. 3 Happy are they who dwell in your house! * they will always be praising you. 4 Happy are the people whose strength is in you! * whose hearts are set on the pilgrims' way. 5 Those who go through the desolate valley will find it a place of springs, * for the early rains have covered it with pools of water. 6 They will climb from height to height, * and the God of gods will reveal himself in Zion. 7 Lord God of hosts, hear my prayer; * hearken, O God of Jacob. 8 Behold our defender, O God; * and look upon the face of your Anointed. 9 For one day in your courts is better than a thousand in my own room, * and to stand at the threshold of the house of my God than to dwell in the tents of the wicked. 10 For the Lord God is both sun and shield; * he will give grace and glory; 11 No good thing will the Lord withhold * from those who walk with integrity. 12 O Lord of hosts, * happy are they who put their trust in you!
The Second Reading: Ephesians 1:3-6, 15-19a Dave Cuthbertson
A reading from Ephesians
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places, just as he chose us in Christ before the foundation of the world to be holy and blameless before him in love. He destined us for adoption as his children through Jesus Christ, according to the good pleasure of his will, to the praise of his glorious grace that he freely bestowed on us in the Beloved.
I have heard of your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love toward all the saints, and for this reason I do not cease to give thanks for you as I remember you in my prayers. I pray that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give you a spirit of wisdom and revelation as you come to know him, so that, with the eyes of your heart enlightened, you may know what is the hope to which he has called you, what are the riches of his glorious inheritance among the saints, and what is the immeasurable greatness of his power for us who believe.
The Word of the Lord Thanks be to God.
Gradual Hymn: H-124 "What star is this, with beams so bright" vss. 1-4
The Gospel:Matthew 2:1-12 The Holy Gospel of Our Lord Jesus Christ according to Matthew Glory to you, Lord Christ. In the time of King Herod, after Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judea, wise men from the East came to Jerusalem, asking, "Where is the child who has been born king of the Jews? For we observed his star at its rising, and have come to pay him homage." When King Herod heard this, he was frightened, and all Jerusalem with him; and calling together all the chief priests and scribes of the people, he inquired of them where the Messiah was to be born. They told him, "In Bethlehem of Judea; for so it has been written by the prophet: `And you, Bethlehem, in the land of Judah, are by no means least among the rulers of Judah; for from you shall come a ruler who is to shepherd my people Israel.'" Then Herod secretly called for the wise men and learned from them the exact time when the star had appeared. Then he sent them to Bethlehem, saying, "Go and search diligently for the child; and when you have found him, bring me word so that I may also go and pay him homage." When they had heard the king, they set out; and there, ahead of them, went the star that they had seen at its rising, until it stopped over the place where the child was. When they saw that the star had stopped, they were overwhelmed with joy. On entering the house, they saw the child with Mary his mother; and they knelt down and paid him homage. Then, opening their treasure chests, they offered him gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh. And having been warned in a dream not to return to Herod, they left for their own country by another road.
The Gospel of the Lord Praise to you, Lord Christ.
Homily - The Reverend John Burton
Nicene Creed - BCP p. 358 We believe in one God, the Father, the Almighty, maker of heaven and earth, of all that is, seen and unseen. We believe in one Lord, Jesus Christ, the only Son of God, eternally begotten of the Father, God from God, Light from Light, true God from true God, begotten, not made, of one Being with the Father. Through him all things were made. For us and for our salvation he came down from heaven: by the power of the Holy Spirit he became incarnate from the Virgin Mary, and was made man. For our sake he was crucified under Pontius Pilate; he suffered death and was buried. On the third day he rose again in accordance with the Scriptures; He ascended into heaven and is seated at the right hand of the Father. He will come again in glory to judge the living and the dead, and his kingdom will have no end. We believe in the Holy Spirit, the Lord, the giver of life, who proceeds from the Father and the Son. With the Father and the Son he is worshiped and glorified. He has spoken through the Prophets. We believe in one holy catholic and apostolic Church. We acknowledge one baptism for the forgiveness of sins. We look for the resurrection of the dead, and the life of the world to come. Amen.
Prayers of the People (Form VI) BCP p. 392 The Leader and People pray responsively In peace, we pray to you, Lord God. Silence
For all people in their daily life and work; For our families, friends, and neighbors, and for those who are alone. For this community, the nation, and the world; For all who work for justice, freedom, and peace. For the just and proper use of your creation; For the victims of hunger, fear, injustice, and oppression. For all who are in danger, sorrow, or any kind of trouble; For those who minister to the sick, the friendless, and the needy. For the peace and unity of the Church of God; For all who proclaim the Gospel, and all who seek the Truth. For Justin, Michael, Thomas, and all bishops and other ministers; For all who serve God in his Church. For the special needs and concerns of these congregations. Silence The People may add their own petitions here
Hear us, Lord; For your mercy is great. We thank you, Lord, for all the blessings of this life. Silence The People may add their own thanksgivings here
We will exalt you, O God our King; And praise your Name for ever and ever. We pray for all who have died, that they may have a place in your eternal kingdom. Silence The People may add their own petitions here
Lord, let your loving-kindness be upon them; Who put their trust in you. We pray to you also for the forgiveness of our sins. Silence may be kept.
Leader and People Have mercy upon us, most merciful Father; in your compassion forgive us our sins, known and unknown, things done and left undone; and so uphold us by your Spirit that we may live and serve you in newness of life, to the honor and glory of your Name; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
The Celebrant concludes with an absolution or a suitable Collect.
The Holy Communion
Eucharistic Prayer 2 Enriching Our Worship The Lord be with you. And also with you. Lift up your hearts. We lift them to the Lord. Let us give thanks to the Lord our God. It is right to give our thanks and praise.
We praise you and we bless you, holy and gracious God, source of life abundant. From before time you made ready the creation. Your Spirit moved over the deep and brought all things into being: sun, moon, and stars; earth, winds, and waters; and every living thing. You made us in your image, and taught us to walk in your ways. But we rebelled against you, and wandered far away; and yet, as a mother cares for her children, you would not forget us. Time and again you called us to live in the fullness of your love. And so this day we join with Saints and Angels in the chorus of praise that rings through eternity, lifting our voices to magnify you as we sing (say)
Holy, Holy, Holy Lord, God of power and might, heaven and earth are full of your glory. Hosanna in the highest. Blessed is the one who comes in the name of the Lord. Hosanna in the highest.
Glory and honor and praise to you, holy and living God. To deliver us from the power of sin and death and to reveal the riches of your grace, you looked with favor upon Mary, your willing servant, that she might conceive and bear a son, Jesus the holy child of God.
Living among us, Jesus loved us. He broke bread with outcasts and sinners, healed the sick, and proclaimed good news to the poor. He yearned to draw all the world to himself yet we were heedless of his call to walk in love.
Then the time came for him to complete upon the cross the sacrifice of his life, and to be glorified by you. On the night before he died for us, Jesus was at table with his friend. He took bread, gave thanks to you, broke it, and gave it to them, and said: "Take, eat: This is my Body, which is given for you. Do this for the remembrance of me."
As supper was ending, Jesus took the cup of wine. Again he gave thanks to you, gave it to them, and said: "Drink this, all of you: This is my Blood of the new Covenant, which is poured out for you and for all for the forgiveness of sins. Whenever you drink it, do this for the remembrance of me."
Now gathered at your table, O God of all creation, and remembering Christ crucified and risen, who was and is and is to come, we offer to you our gifts of bread and wine, and ourselves, a living sacrifice.
Pour out your Spirit upon these gifts that they may be the Body and blood of Christ. Breathe your Spirit over the whole earth and make us your new creation, the Body of Christ given for the world you have made.
In the fullness of time bring us, with (—- and) all your saints, from every tribe and language and people and nation, to feast at the banquet prepared from the foundation of the world. Through Christ and with Christ and in Christ, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, t o you be honor, glory, and praise, for ever and ever. Amen.
The Lord's Prayer: BCP p. 364
Fraction Anthem: Alleluia. Christ our Passover is sacrificed for us; Therefore let us keep the feast. Alleluia.
Prayer of Spiritual Communion: Presider: Since now we are apart, let us pray: In union, O Lord, with your faithful people at every altar of your Church, where the Holy Eucharist is now being celebrated, I desire to offer to you praise and thanksgiving. Since I cannot receive you today in the Sacrament of your Body and Blood, I beseech you to come spiritually into my heart. Cleanse and strengthen me with your grace, Lord Jesus, and let me never be separated from you. May I live in you, and you in me, in this life and in the life to come. Amen.
Post Communion Prayer Presider: Let us pray. Eternal God, heavenly Father, you have graciously accepted us as living members of your Son our Savior Jesus Christ, and you have fed us with spiritual food in the Sacrament of His Body and Blood. Send us now into the world in peace, and grant us strength and courage to love and serve you with gladness and singleness of heart; through Christ our Savior. Amen.
Closing Hymn: H-119 "As with gladness men of old"
Postlude:How bright appears the Morning Star by Johann Pachelbel + + + + + + + + +
Participants Celebrant and Preacher: The Reverend John Burton Musician: Dr. Daniel Pyle Vocalist: Marsha Lyons Readers: Maude March, David Cuthbertson Psalmist: Jayne Ashworth Prayers of the People: Mike Bullard Broadcast Editor: Jim Vallette
St. John the Divine's sanctuary is open for meditation. Please sign in and wear a mask.
If you need help or need to talk with someone, please call Gen MacKenzie, 244-7313 Ted Fletcher, 266-8415
SACRED GROUND: A FILM-BASED DIALOGUE SERIES ON RACE & FAITH
Stewardship 2021Winter/Spring study group on racism, racial healing, racial justice and reconciliation
Part of the Episcopal Church Becoming Beloved Community initiative
Documentary film and text-based learning with small group discussion twice monthly
Open to the MDI Episcopal community (registration for the entire series is required)
Sacred Ground is an Episcopal-developed series of gatherings that are "part of the Becoming Beloved Community initiative of The Episcopal Church, a long-term commitment to racial healing, reconciliation, and justice in our personal lives, our ministries, and our society. ...This is a race dialogue series designed for these times. It is an attempt to be responsive to the profound challenges that currently exist in our society. It is focused on the challenges that swirl around issues of race and racism, as well as the difficult but respectful and transformative dialogue we need to have with each other about them. It invites participants to walk back through history in order to peel away the layers that brought us to today, and to do so in a personal way, reflecting on family histories and stories, as well as important narratives that shape the collective American story. It holds the vision of beloved community as a guiding star – where all people are honored and protected and nurtured as beloved children of God, where we weep at one another's pain and seek one another's flourishing." (Quotes are from the Episcopal Church Sacred Ground website at: https://episcopalchurch.org/sacred-ground/ )
This study is part of a journey that requires an openness and willingness to examine our histories, our current lives, and how structural racism affects everything we know, including our faith. We hope that you will prayerfully consider making a commitment to joining us. If you have questions or are interested in becoming a part of the circle for Sacred Ground here on MDI, please contact Jayne Ashworth (firstname.lastname@example.org , (207) 244-5985) or Gail Leiser (email@example.com , (207) 288-9083). Should you need financial assistance for obtaining the books needed for the study, please contact Rev. Stephen Muncie: firstname.lastname@example.org We look forward to hearing from you. Jayne and Gail
St. John's Calendar
The full St. John's Calendar can be viewed <HERE>.
At St. John's Keep in your prayers this week:
Peppy Seavey, Ted Bromage, Jean Storace, Spencer Ervin, Geoff Schuller, Bill Krueger, Doris McCorison, Gail Leland, Jeremy Harkins, Michael Shook, Joyce and Jim Risser, Loretta Schmidt, Theresa Mitchell, David Douglass, Fred & Dollis Sprague, Sara Winchenbach, Ray & Susan McDonald, Richard Ramsdell, Dorothy & Jim Clunan, Bill and Barbara Loveland.
Give thanks for the life of Peter Loizeaux who died December 24th. Keep his sisters (Peggy Engel and Sonia Loizeaux) in your prayers.
Thanks to Stephen Sampson, Jayne Ashworth and Michael Shook, you may enjoy some piano music on the St. Andrew & St. John website. On the menu on the left-hand side of the home page there is now a link titled 'Music,' and clicking on that link brings you to recordings of piano pieces by Stephen Sampson.
Westside Food Pantry
Dear friends, I hope that everyone had a safe and happy Christmas! And now onward to 2021. When I reflect back one year ago, I am sure that I had every expectation that 2020 would be a normal distribution season. What will 2021 bring to our work?
Let's take a look at December 2020 first. We continued to operate using the windows for voucher distribution and dealing with any errors in our records. The only activity indoors is registration. That was in a separate room with a plexiglass window between the registrar and new neighbor. Here are the December numbers: $17,630 in regular vouchers and $5,000 in Christmas vouchers. This was a 4% increase over last year's regular voucher total. 347 neighbors served: 266 adults, 81 children from 200 households. We registered 2 new households with 4 members total.
Our faithful donor base has been generous as well as faithful. So many of the donations were increased this year. I was pleasantly surprised by this development, and grateful. Also, the use of our online donation button at westsidefoodpantry.org has received very good use since it went into service in late November. We have received new donations here--a welcome gain for 2020. Finally, to close out 2020, I want to thank the four of you who diligently hand-write acknowledgement notes to our donors. This is a crucial part of our operations. Thank you Ellen Gilmore, Ann Benson, Leza Colquhoun, and Genieve Mackenzie for your keeping up with the incoming donations this season.
Now, to 2021. The Pantry will open this Sunday, January 3, at Noon until 2 PM at St. John Church. The vouchers for January have been prepared thanks to Rita Redfield, Karen McFarland, Sandy Wilcox, and Carroll Fernald. Also, thank you Laura Sweeney who is monthly preparing all of our voucher labels, as well as mailing out vouchers to the neighbors who qualify to receive them this way. Approximately 35 neighbors who are over the age of 70 and/or disabled have requested mailed vouchers.
My wish is that we are able to continue our work as effectively and compassionately in the new year as we were able this past year. With your strong support, our faithful donors, and as long as the need to help our neighbors presents itself, I trust that we will continue this work as we have in the past 30 years. What a blessing and challenge this caring work affords us all! Thank you.
My best wishes always, Dean
We invite you to visit the facebook page for the Westside Food Pantry! You will find periodic announcements and information about the Westside Food Pantry. Please visit the page and like it. You can find it at: https://www.facebook.com/WestsideFoodPantry/
From the Diocese of Maine
As a Parish of the Diocese of Maine, we are part of a church family that extends from Kittery to Fort Kent, and connects us to the rest of the Episcopal Church and the worldwide Anglican Communion. We share ministry with our Bishop and with every worshiping community.
If you are not subscribed to the Diocesan twice monthly email newsletter, the DioLog, please click [here] to subscribe. If you are subscribed, don't forget to open it and read it every time! There is a lot going on in every corner of the Diocese, and you wouldn't want to miss anything.
MDI+ Episcopal Churches:
Confidential Prayer Chain: Unlike our published prayer lists, prayer requests that come into the Prayer Chain remain private to the prayer chain itself, which will pray devotedly for one week unless an updated request is made. If you'd like to know more about this or our Pastoral Care Team, please contact our office administrators.
St. Mary and St. Jude The Rev. Stephen Muncie is conducting a Zoom Bible Study on Wednesday mornings at 10:30 a.m. He is using the New Revised Standard Version (NRSV) translation of the Bible but you may use any translation you have on hand. For direct dial or URL information for this meeting, click here.
Church of Our Father Music and Chatter: On each Wednesday at 5:30 pm there is a 30 minute program entitled "Music & Chatter". The idea is to keep us all involved and up to date. It can be seen on the MDI Episcopal You Tube channel. Click on the link below: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC-fGpm4_aFoi0mNvMiXhSwg.
A variety of ways exist on Mount Desert Island for people to offer to provide help or to receive help during the current pandemic.
Connecting with the people who are coordinating this effort may happen:
6) Lincoln Millstein has put together a Quietside newsletter -- very interesting: theqsjournal.com
Stephen Byers Sampson, Music Director Michele Daley, Parish Administrator (244-3229) Sr. Warden, Gen MacKenzie (244-7313) Jr. Warden, Ted Fletcher (244-5225) The Church Office is open Monday and Thursday 8:30 - 2:30 (244-3229)