The message below by the late Most Reverend John T Cahoon is not on this Sunday's Epistle and Gospel but about this upcoming Wednesday -- Ash Wednesday -- the beginning of Lent.
But before Lent begins what is known as Fat Tuesday (this Tuesday) in some parts of the country is called Shrove Tuesday in our church. It's a chance for fellowship, evangelism, and good times to which we hope you will invite family, friends, and neighbors. There will be an Evening Prayer service at 7 PM followed immediately by a pancake supper cooked by some of the men of the parish. There will also be champagne and soft drinks. Hope you will be there and also be joining us on Ash Wednesday at either the noon or 7 PM service to start Lent properly.
And one other item, we've received some questions about giving online. Yes, it is possible to designate contributions. There's a drop down menu once you get to the actual donation page that gives you several choices including the general fund, building fund, charity and mercy, etc. Just highlight where you want your donation to go. Also, if you want to help either the food bank or Marih Crisis pregnancy center, you can designate the contribution for charity and mercy and then in the note section on the form you can say that you want the funds to go for food for the food bank or to Marih Center. Hope that answers the questions. If not just respond to this email, we'll be glad to help.
The Most Rev. John T. Cahoon, Jr., Metropolitan, Anglican Catholic Church; Rector, St. Andrew & St. Margaret of Scotland
Ash Wednesday, 2/12/1997
I got a letter last week from a friend of mine. She is a member of our church, but she has recently taken up a job as Director of Christian Education at a Protestant church near where she lives. Things are going along pretty well., she tells me, but there are some things about church life which she takes for granted but which are quite foreign to her new congregation.
For example, she writes, "The minister told me Lent 'doesn't work' for church growth--too negative." . She goes on, "I told him spiritual housecleaning seems positive to me."
In the early days of Prayer Book revision in the Episcopal Church, one of the notes the revolutionaries liked to sound was, "The 1928 Prayer Book is too penitential. People don't want to be reminded of their sins all the time. They don't like to say, 'we are not worthy so much as to gather up the crumbs under thy table,' or call themselves, 'miserable sinners." In other words, I guess, "Sin doesn't work for church growth--too negative."
A large element of my sin is precisely that I don't like to be reminded of it. That's why I have to come to church--to have my nose rubbed in it.
But God doesn't call attention to my sin to make me feel guilty or to make me wallow around in, dare I say it, negativity--God wants me to face my sin and confess it so he can forgive me by the blood of Jesus and give me the strength to go on--and, perhaps, even improve.
I agree with my friend when she writes, "I told him spiritual housecleaning seems positive to me." That is the only kind of church growth which lasts.
Ash Wednesday also sounds the note of mortality, "Human being, made of dust, you are going to wind up in the dust again." We die not only because we sin, but also because we try to cover our sin up and shift the blame onto people amd forces outside ourselves--just ask Adam and Eve.
But the Epistle to the Hebrews reminds us, "It is appointed unto men once to die, and after this the judgment" If the dust of death were the end of the story, we should have nothing to worry about. But we are going to face the judgment of God after we die. If we have not trained ourselves to examine our lives, confess our sins with sorrow, and ask for God's forgiveness while we are here; we shall be speechless at the judgment.
It is not random coincidence that Jesus' parable of the Prodigal Son is the New Testament lesson for Evening Prayer on Ash Wednesday. Let us put the prodigal's resolution on our own lips this Lent. "I will arise and go to my father and will say unto him, 'Father, I have sinned against heaven and before thee, and am no more worthy to be called thy son"--and I know he will take me back.
For "A broken and contrite heart, 0 God, wilt thou not despise."
Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal: but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal.
Please Click Here to Donate to St. Andrew & St. Margaret of Scotland Upcoming Events
Sunday Services, 7:45, 9:00 & 11:15 AM nursery care provided during 9 & 11:15 AM services (for online participation for the services go to: https://www.facebook.com/saintsofscotland/ )
Sunday school, 10:30 AM
Vestry Meeting, Monday February 28, 7:30 PM, undercroft
Pancake Supper, Shrove Tuesday, March 1, 7:00 PM, Evening Prayer followed by our famous Pancake Supper with great pancakes and more including bubbly. Invite your relatives, friends and neighbors.
Ash Wednesday Services with Imposition of Ashes 12 noon & 7:00 PM (can be seen also at https://www.facebook.com/saintsofscotland/)
Stations of the Cross & Lenten Suppers, Beginning Friday March 4 at 7:00 PM and every Friday following during Lent. If you can provide a soup without meat and a bread supper for one or more of these Fridays, please sign up on the sheet on the bulletin board in the undercroft.
Please remember to pray for everyone on the parish's prayer list that is in the attached bulletins.
Your Food Donations are Greatly Needed Please help this month with a food donation if you are able. Christ House is very thankful for the food we provide to them each month. Please also buy low sugar cereals (and not the kid's types that have lots of sugar). Current needs include the following: • canned meats (chicken, corned beef, spam) • peanut butter • jelly • tuna • canned vegetables (corn, green beans - (regular and low sodium) • individual fruit cups (low sugar) • canned fruit (low sugar) • cereal (low sugar) • pasta (regular and gluten-free) • instant potatoes • Macaroni & cheese kits • Coffee, cooking oil, flour, sugar
MaRIH Center is also in great need of our help (crisis pregnancy center) MaRIH Center with its all volunteer staff has been providing help to mothers-to-be and mothers in need. If you can provide some of the items that are needed, please do so. (You can leave the donations where the food for the food bank is collected on the pew in the undercorft.)
Especially Needed Baby wipes (an ongoing great need) Diapers (sizes 1, 4, 5, & 6) Similac Advanced Formula Batteries (all sizes)
Winter Clothing Boy/Girl (new only please) Sizes Clothing (0-6 months, boys and girls) Winter jackets(24 months to 2T, boys and girls)