A Message from the Rector:
Incarnation and Private Devotions, Water and Light
For many people, “private devotions” references a regular (or maybe occasional) practice of Bible reading and reflection, often with a book of thoughtful devotions. This discipline of reading and prayer can give shape to a day and, over time, to one’s life. A daily practice shapes the soul, slowly, over time, through years and through the stages of one’s life.
But private devotions can also be done in public, in the context of our worship together. They can be a meaningful way to focus on a moment that touches one personally and all of us as fellow seekers and worshippers. These are devotional practices such as lighting a candle in prayer, or blessing oneself with holy water.
We have recently added a votive candle stand in the sanctuary, and last Sunday, opened the baptismal font filled with holy water for personal devotions. Beyond common safety and courtesy, there are no specific rules on how to do devotions with candles and with blessed water. As creatures made of both spirit and dust, candles and water speak to us without words. We are creatures that carry deep yearnings, concerns, and cares on our hearts and mind—and we carry these yearnings, concerns, and cares in our fragile, mortal, bodies made of same stuff of the world around us. Lighting a candle, touching water and then touching head, hand, or heart, are ways to enact love and care, to wordlessly express what we carry inside. The wordless languages of gesture, focus, and the senses are every bit as meaningful and heartfelt as the most beautifully crafted prayer.
For myself, as I light a candle I often say the names of those I carry in prayer. Sometimes I know that I need to light more than one candle. Sometimes so many names start crowding my consciousness that I just pray “Lord, have mercy” as I light my candle. There is no magic in holy water—just the knowledge that it has been set aside and specially blessed precisely for you, here, now. Feeling the coolness on my fingers and then my forehead is a comfort as well as a point of entry into the sanctuary and worship. Sometimes as I touch the water I think about baptisms I’ve witnessed, and wonder what mine was like. Sometimes I think about my desire to move toward to holy and the pure. Taoists talk about how humble water is, taking the shape of its container, taking away dirt and detritus; yet water is strong and can wear away stone, drop by drop. Water reminds me of the moment when preparing the altar for the Eucharist when the server pours water over my hands for a ritual cleansing and offers me a small linen towel. I always pray “Create in me a pure heart O Lord, and renew a steadfast spirit within me, lines from psalm 51. Usually, however, I just touch the cool water, touch my forehead in the shape of the cross, and from there move into the moment of worship, the water as familiar a point of entry to the sanctuary and worship as “Hi, how are you?” is as we pass each other on the street.
But this is me, not you. If you feel drawn to light a candle or to bless yourself with holy water, please do so in a way that is most meaningful to you. If you need to extinguish a candle, there is a small snuffer in the space under the candles. If you can, hold the snuffer over the flame for a few seconds without dipping it into the molten wax…but if the snuffer has a little wax on it, no worries. We will extinguish the candles before the sanctuary empties at the end of the service. When you bless yourself with water, try to keep the drops away from the floor as people walk over that space. And whatever you choose to do—or choose not to do—remember that you are always in the presence of the Holy One, and that our sanctuary is a place to bring our awareness of that Presence closer and more immediate, heightening sensitivity and attention to the moment at hand.
Connect With Us
Rector’s Office Drop-In Time
Rev. Jen has set her office drop-in day as Wednesday of each week from 9:30 – 11:30 a.m. and 1:30 – 3:30 p.m. for anyone who would like to stop in and visit. You are always invited to make an appointment for a time convenient for you. Also, she has chosen Mondays as her Sabbath day.
The Third Sunday After the Epiphany
Sunday Morning In-Person Worship Service, January 22, led by Rev. Dr. Jennifer Oldstone-Moore, 10:15 a.m.
You can connect to the service 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: 858 0497 0006 and press #, then enter the password: pray and press # again.
Click here for the service booklet for January 22.
The Latest Updates
TUESDAY BIBLE STUDY – 4:30 P.M. IN HAMILTON HALL
Bible Study will be held on Tuesday, January 24. The reading for January 24 is Matthew 5:1-12. You can find the week’s readings at lectionarypage.net. Beginning January 31, we’ll start with a deep dive into John 3:16.
ELEMENTARY SCHOOL YOUTH SUNDAY SCHOOL – VOLUNTEERS NEEDED
The youth are up to some fun. Join them by being an occasional volunteer! Once you have completed your Safe Church training, all you have to do is show up – Macie and Jen+ have everything prepared. The youth come into the sanctuary for the Peace.
BUDGET PRESENTATION FEBRUARY 19 AND ANNUAL PARISH MEETING FEBRUARY 26
In order to streamline the Annual Meeting on February 26, the Sunday before the Annual Meeting we will have a presentation immediately following the service on the 2023 St. Andrew’s budget. You are invited to come with your questions and comments. The Annual Meeting will be the following Sunday.
MAUREEN CARKEEK’S MEMORIAL ARRANGEMENTS
Maureen’s Celebration of Life has been scheduled for late afternoon, May 27, 2023, the Saturday of Memorial weekend, here at St. Andrew’s. More details to follow.
COMMUNION AT THE WATERS
Once a month Sunday services have resumed at The Waters. The next service will be this Sunday, February 12 at 2:00 – 2:45 p.m. If you’d like to help with this ministry in any way, please contact Rev. Jen or Renee. All are welcome to attend!
ON-GOING COVID PROTOCOL
We continue to respond to both our county’s current CDC designation and to the current variant. Masking is optional. Those who serve bread and wine will mask so that anyone who comes to the altar can feel secure. Decisions on COVID policy have moved from the Reconvening Committee to Rev. Jen and the Wardens.
Prayers and Reflections for This Week
We have heard that the daily reflections and scripture readings provided during Lent were appreciated. The meditations are written by persons from Gobin UMC and Beech Grove UMC. They will be in the newsletter each week and go from Wednesday to Tuesday, except for Sunday. Whether you enjoy these every day or as the Spirit moves you, may this resource continue to bring you spiritual food for the journey. Blessings!
Click here to view the readings and accompanying links.
Non Food Pantry Latest
Saturday, January 28
• Noon to 3:00 p.m.
There will be a drive through distribution and sack lunches will be served. We are very grateful to Kate Berry, Martha Rainbolt, Carl Huffman, Karen Hirt Mannon, and Christiane Wisehart who have worked very hard to obtain supplies for the Non-Food Pantry. Kroger is not able to acquire enough products for us so the items are being purchased from a variety of sources. This is much more expensive. Donations to help offset this extra cost will be gratefully accepted!
Top 3 Needed Items
Your prayers are asked for:
Haile Bane, grandson of Joanne Haymaker
Beth Benedix, friend to many of us at Saint Andrew’s
Douglas Butler, brother-in-law of Claudia Butler
Richard A. Butler, father-in-law of Claudia Butler
Adam Cohen, friend of St. Andrew’s
Family & friends of Michael Condra
The family of Bernice Emrick, mother of Karen Hirt Mannon
Nancy Ferriani, friend of Warren & Connie Macy
Katie Gleichman, relative of Jim Ensley
Alan & Vickie Good, father of Tim Good
David Grueber, stepson of Scott Kissinger
Kimberly Heithaus, niece of Joe & Jenny Heithaus
Shandol Hoover, friend of Dave & Sue Murray
Terumi Imai, friend of Jen+
Kaylee, Ryan, and baby
Lisa Breese Kincaid, daughter of Bob & Mimi Breese
David Lawson, nephew of Peggy Angleton
Grayson Lyons, great nephew of Peggy Angleton
Tom Mullen, father of Patti Harmless
Lucas Murray, grandson of Dave & Sue Murray
Emmanuel Myril, Karen Hirt Mannon’s son-in-law’s father
Michael & Elizabeth Oldstone, parents of Jen+
Sarah Oldstone, sister-in-law of Jen+
Pamela & Linda
Elizabeth & Natalie Sheffler, daughter & granddaughter of Page & Narda Cotton
Jerry Taylor, friend of Warren & Connie Macy
Sydnor Thompson, brother of Harriet Moore
The family of Sharon Walters, friend of Connie Macy
The family of Verl Wisehart, father of Christiane Wisehart
Diocesan Cycle of Prayer: Peace Church, Rockport: Mr. Dan Kincaid, Sr. 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 Church of North India (United).
Birthdays: Tony Harmless, January 24; Kathy Jones, January 26.
THE COMMON CUP, INTINCTION, AND FULL COMMUNION
I would like to discuss our returning to communion by wine via the common cup.
Background: The Diocese of Indianapolis has stated that we may return to full communion (both bread and wine), but that receiving the wine can be by common cup only. Several parishioners have had questions about this. Here’s what I’d like you to know at this point.
- The Vestry voted and approved our new COVID guidelines recommended by the Regathering Committee.
- We might use the words “full communion” to indicate that we are finally back to both bread and wine, but it has ALWAYS been true that taking either one is a complete communion. You do not need both to fully commune.
- The choice is yours, Eucharist by Eucharist. You can decide to let the cup pass because you have a cold; if you are worried about others you can pass; you can wait until we return to intinction. Just cross your arms over your chest—or just shake your head and quietly demur.
Yours in health, restoration, liturgical engagement, and literature review,