Reflecting on The Body of Christ in the Time of a Pandemic
During these past ten months as we’ve hunkered down in our homes and prayed for health and healing for ourselves and our world, I’ve heard two wishes repeated more than any others. “I wish I could be with my friends in church again” and “I wish I could receive Holy Eucharist again.”
So in light of this second wish I humbly offer a brief reflection. Each time in the past as we gathered to receive bread and wine – the Sacred Body and Blood – we have heard these lines spoken to us. “The Body of Christ, the bread of heaven” and “The Blood of Christ, the cup of salvation.”
I remind us of this because more than any other action or ritual, the most important and significant action of my own priesthood is placing the “Body of Christ” and/or offering the “Blood of Christ” into your hands and gazing into your eyes. Without fail, it is the high point of most of my days and weeks.
What makes it so significant to me, however, might not be what you think it is.
Its importance to me is not because of my role as Eucharistic leader. Its significance doesn’t come from the fact that many of the actions performed in our worship are reserved only for myself and a few others. No, its meaning comes from this:Each time I place bread or wine into open hands, I am gazing into the eyes of CHRIST HIMSELF. YOU ARE THE BODY OF CHRIST. IT IS THE BLOOD OF CHRIST FLOWING THROUGH YOUR VEINS. This is what we have always believed and proclaimed as Christians. This is why we have gathered in the past and will soon, in God’s grace, gather together again. But until then, please know and always remember this.
Christ is not somehow out there. Jesus is not somehow gone. No, Jesus Christ is alive and well – LIVING IN YOU and ME. Whether we find ourselves worshipping and praying in our living rooms, on our telephones, or in a church, we are WITH and IN Jesus Christ because Jesus Christ is WITH and IN US. And when we log into Zoom and see all those faces looking back at us next Sunday, please don’t forget that we will be looking at the face(s) of Jesus Christ Himself!
With love and blessings in this New Year,
Connect With Us
National Service Day
You are all invited to join in on this opportunity to serve, called by President-elect Joe Biden and to be observed on Martin Luther King Day, January 18, by donating products or sending a check to the Non-Food Pantry. You could also donate food to the Putnam County Food Pantry, 200 Tennessee Street. Their hours next week are 9:00 a.m. to noon on Monday and Tuesday.
The most needed items for our Non-Food Pantry here are toilet paper, paper towels, shampoo, white or black trash bags, bar soap, dish detergent. Other items needed are aluminum foil, bleach, body wash, Comet, hair conditioner, deodorant, glass cleaner, Pine Sol, razors, spray cleaner, tissues, toilet bowl cleaner, toothbrushes, toothpaste. Special need items are diapers (Size 5), feminine hygience products, bladder protection pads (Size 5).
You can put your donated items on the front porch of Advent House if you miss Renee who is in Monday – Thursday 9:00 a.m. to noon. Christiane Wisehart will be at the church on Monday from 1:00 – 3:00 p.m. to receive donations and organize the products!
First Sunday after Epiphany: The Great Invitation
Sunday Worship January 17
You can connect via Zoom . Click on this link to connect. If you have not used Zoom before, you will be prompted to download Zoom, go ahead and do that. When you enter the meeting you should be able to see and hear others and others can see and hear you. If you come in a little late, please listen for a moment before speaking. In order to see everyone, go to Gallery view (upper right on PCs and upper left for Macintosh). When we get started everyone except the speaker will be muted. If you are reading or playing music, please be sure to unmute yourself.
If you are connecting via telephone dial 301-715-8592 and when prompted enter the Meeting ID: 847 8600 1703 and press #, then enter the password: pray and press # again.
Click here for the service booklet for January 17.
Do you wonder whether Christian life and church membership still make sense in our tumultuous world? And wonder how so many people claim to be Christian and yet act so differently? If so, then please join us beginning on Wednesday evening, January 27. Join us as renowned Biblical scholar, theologian, and fellow Episcopalian Marcus Borg takes us on a thoughtful, faithful, and hopeful journey. Join us in reading and discussing Borg’s final book, Convictions: How I Learned What Matters Most. Copies of this book will be available at the Parish Office beginning this weekend. Book Study dates will be: Wednesday evenings at 7:00 p.m. on January 27, February 10, February 24, March 10 Please join us as we read and discuss Borg’s final book, Convictions: How I Learned What Matters Most.
Wednesday Book Study
Starting Wednesday, January 27 • Via Zoom, 7:00 p.m.
Zoom Meeting link – click here. If you are connecting via telephone dial 301-715-8592 and when prompted enter the Meeting ID: 847 8600 1703 and press #. The password is: pray.
Non Food Pantry Latest
Non Food Pantry information here.
Top 3 Needed Items
Your prayers are asked for:
Lorrie Anderson, cousin of Joanne Haymaker
Beth Benedix, friend to many of us at Saint Andrew’s
JoElla Burns, friend of Terry Noble
Douglas Butler, brother-in-law of Claudia Butler
The family of Patty Clements, friend of Cathryn & Jim Ensley
The family of Tom Gibson, brother of Gwen Morris
The family of Micah Grimm, friend of Zac and Savannah Johnson
Mary Ellen Gurnon, aunt of Daniel & Stephanie Gurnon
The family of Frances Louise Hassler, mother of Suzanne Hassler
William Johnston, son of Kevin and Meggan Johnston
Keith Keysor, friend of Andy Cullison
Lisa Breese Kincaid, daughter of Bob and Mimi Breese
Grayson Lyons, great nephew of Peggy Angleton
Jill McDermott, mother of Jim & Karen Mannon’s son-in-law
The family of Nick Mourouzis
Jordan Sanders, sister of Jim Ensley
The family of Jeff Sheffler, son-in-law of Page & Narda Cotton
The family of Rogene Snook, mother of Caroline Good
The family of Pastor Daniel Stroebel, friend of Father Mark
Sydnor Thompson, brother of Harriet Moore
Father Bill Wieland
The family of Phyllis Wright, grandmother of Zac Johnson
The family of Eric York, husband of Christi York and father of Dunkin
Birthdays: Sarah Gerkensmeyer, January 17 . Pat Baylis, January 19
Diocesan Cycle of Prayer: Saint Luke’s Church, Cannelton: Mr. Frank Maffia, Senior Warden.
Our companion dioceses: The Anglican Episcopal Church of Brazil: The Most Rev. Mauricio Jose Araujo De Andrade, Primate of Brazil and Bishop of Brasilia. The people and Diocese of Haiti and Saint Andre’s in Mithon.
Anglican Cycle of Prayer: The Anglican Church of Australia.