This Sunday we commemorated St. James the Apostle who with his brother, St. John, were nicknamed the 'Sons of Thunder'.
"Are ye able to drink of the cup that I shall drink of, and to be baptized with the baptism that I am baptized with?"
Fr. Scott led our Holy Communion Service this Sunday, the Feast Day of St. James. This Sunday would normally be the Eighth Sunday after Trinity but was also July 25 which is the feast day of St. James. Our Anglican faith ranks events and people from the Bible as Major Feasts which are worthy of celebration and take precedence over the lessons for the Eighth Sunday after Trinity. Fr. Scott's sermon focused on the Gospel lesson which describes the day the mother of James and John asked Jesus to seat them on either side of Him in Heaven. Her intentions were pure, she wanted her sons to be all that they could be and wanted our Lord to consider them for places of prominence in the kingdom to come. Our Lord does not get mad at her request, though the other disciples do. She was interceding for her children and was worshiping our Lord. Jesus uses this opportunity to explain what the Christian Faith is about and more specifically what following Him entails. Unlike the modern 'name it and claim it theology', the Bible teaches us being a Christian is costly, full of suffering and pain. Our Lord and His saints suffered but we think we are entitled to wealth and happiness? The cup our Lord drank from and the baptism He was baptized into was suffering and death. Just as our Lord ministered instead of being ministered to, we are called to be ministers and servants to everyone both in the Church and outside of it. St. James did ultimately drink from the same cup and was baptized with the same baptism as our Lord. He was killed for his Christian Faith and suffered greatly before that. How have you suffered for Christ? How has your Christian faith impacted your life? Do you trust in wealth or your health or your social standing? Will you drink from the same cup and be baptized with the baptism as our Lord?
After services we celebrated Earl's 86th Birthday this past week. Rose Marie created a wonderful light lunch including sausage meatballs, croissants with chicken salad, and Earl's favorite - a German Chocolate Birthday Cake. Ambler, Teresa, and Rosalind contributed veggies, fruit, and homemade chocolate chip cookies!
Happy Birthday Earl!! Thank you both for all you do for St. Peters!
(Unfortunately, I got caught up in the festivities and didn't take pictures!)
Fr. Scott, Scott, Mike and Claudia journeyed to Atlanta for the Anglican Province of America’s triennial Provincial Synod and the Diocese of the Eastern United States (DEUS) Diocesan Synod this past week.
Fr. Scott sent the following summary:
This past week, I traveled down to Atlanta for our combined yearly Synod and triennial Provincial Synod with Scott, Mike, Claudia. Synod is a meeting of the Clergy and lay people of the whole diocese from all the Churches that come together to make decisions for our Church. Our Diocese of the Eastern United States (DEUS) meets every year and our whole Anglican Province of America (APA) meets every three years.
This year’s Synod was particularly important. We elected Bp Jones as our new Diocesan Bishop (of our Diocese) and our new Presiding Bishop (of the whole APA). We also honored Bishop Grundorf (who was the previous Diocesan and Presiding Bishop) for his many years of service to our Lord, the APA, and our Church. I have been personally blessed in the short time I have known Bishop Grundorf and I know he holds a special place in his heart for St. Peters. He will still be with us as Bishop, just in a different role going forward.
I am thankful to Scott, Mike and Claudia for coming to experience everything with me. We had a great time. I have discovered that Scott is a great chauffeur and could have a career as a Uber driver if the symphony doesn’t work out. He took me out to supper on Monday evening and we met with the board of examining chaplains together on Tuesday, right before my scheduled meeting with them. Mike and Claudia came on Tuesday, and we all went out to supper that night. The meetings began on Wednesday and went through Friday. They represented our Church extremely well. Mike and Claudia had to suffer through early mornings and late nights, the day started at 7:00 am and went to 9:00 pm at night. Every night I stayed up after that for cough, cough, extracurricular activities that I claim were for socializing.
I had meetings on Tuesday with the Board of Examining Chaplains and with the Standing Committee. Both meetings went very well and my status with the APA is moving forward. I also got the opportunity to give a “parish report” to the whole Synod (which I had no preparation time for) that allowed me to speak about how great St. Peters is. In somewhat of a summary of what I said, I told them that
“We don’t have all the money in the world yet, we don’t have all the programs in the world yet, and our building might be a little hard to find, but what we do have is a group of people from all over East Tennessee that love our Lord and want to see this Church succeed. I have been blessed to be able to minister to this remnant of believers in Word and Sacrament. Our model right now is ‘if you have a service, they will come’ and this has worked so far. We had two occasions (Easter and St. Peters Feast Day) where we had more people than our building could hold. That is encouraging for the future.”
I got to meet many new faces and many people who I had talked to over the past 8 months. All in all, St. Peter’s is loved and valued in the APA. I have been taken in by the APA and have found a home. I look forward to our future with Bp Jones and the rest of the APA and most importantly our future together here at St Peters.
Claudia sent the following pictures from the Synod!
Fr Scott, Scott, Mike and Claudia enjoying dinner!
Fr Scott and Mike with Bp Grundorf.
Fr Scott talking with Mary Grundorf, Bp Grundorf's wife.
Mike and Fr. Scott met up with our dear 'over the mountain' friend , Fr. Dennis!
Fr Scott K (one of our wonderful former supply priests) met up with Scott, Fr. Scott, and Mike!
Fr Dennis, Mike, and Fr Scott ate dinner with DJ Fulton, the retiring Diocesan & Provincial Treasurer.
St. Barnabas Church (now Cathedral!), host church for the Synods and home church of our new Bishop, Bishop Chad Jones.
Bishop Jones (fourth from left) after his Enthronement Service as both Diocesan and Provincial Bishop.
Thank you, Claudia for all those wonderful pictures! Also, thank you Fr. Scott, Scott, Mike and Claudia for going to Atlanta and so ably representing St. Peters at the Synods!
Sue continues to lead our weekly online prayer group on Tuesday at 11:30. Thank you so much Sue for taking the time each week to lead our prayers! If you have a special prayer request but cannot join us, please send your request to Sue. Please contact me (Rosalind) if you would like to join us on Discord.