A Message from our Rector:

An alternative reading…and the depth and challenges of the Bible

What is primary message of Jesus’ encounter with Zacchaeus, the tax collector? If the purpose of religion is to “comfort the afflicted and afflict the comfortable” then is Jesus’ encounter with Zacchaeus meant to afflict those persons like him who are rich, powerful, and taking advantage of rules at the expense of the little people? Or is there a surprise message, hidden, ready to zing the unsuspecting reader?

I have certainly focused on Zacchaeus himself. It’s a powerful story that is beautifully packaged—he’s easy to disapprove of, to rejoice with, and even to laugh at. At church camp we sing a song, “Zacchaeus was a wee little man, a wee little man was he…” (BTW, please feel free to thank me: I have NOT sung it to you on the off chance that you don’t know it, thus preventing a pernicious earworm that will haunt you for days.) It is not hard at all to think of a tax collector as the object of hatred and as a sinner in desperate need of redemption. Zacchaeus’ story is incredibly satisfying because he is so in need of redemption—and because he repents and transforms so completely.

But what if the story of Zacchaeus is not so much about Zacchaeus needing to change as it is about the crowd needing to change?

I bring this up as a wake-up to the crowd—to us—to me—and as a demonstration of how tricky the Bible and translation can be, and how our compass for reading is most true when it orients to the broad theme of failure, mercy, and grace.

Zacchaeus’s beautiful transformation is made evident in his cry, usually translated as “Look, half of my possessions, Lord, I will give to the poor, and if I have defrauded anyone of anything, I will pay back four times as much.” (Luke 19:8). Our understanding of Zacchaeus relies on the notion that Zacchaeus has been touched by Jesus reaching out to him as he perched in the sycamore tree, that Jesus wanting to have dinner with him was the turning point to repentance and transformation.

Here’s the thing: in Greek, the language of the New Testament, the verb “give” is in the present tense, not the future tense. Jesus tells Zacchaeus that he’s coming to his house. The crowd murmurs against Zacchaeus. Zacchaeus says, “Half my possessions, Lord, I give to the poor, and I have defrauded anyone of anything, I pay back four times as much!”

Not “will give,” but “give.” I give them now. Already. In other words, Jesus and the crowd may have misjudged Zacchaeus all along. Has he been a righteous tax collector, working behind enemy lines, as it were, giving people far more than what is owed them? Is the crowd—are we—the ones who need to be called out, to repent, to change their—our—ways? Is the crowd angry at generosity of spirit—and do we try to limit God’s grace to people who are like us, rather than having it spread to all people? I came across a sentence that simultaneously depressed me and rang true about why some people will not darken the doors of a church: they are afraid of the disapproving looks they will encounter, and “[s]adly, the most despising and diminishing looks come from the disciples of Jesus.”[1] And while I don’t know the answer to the question of whether this encounter points to the shortcomings of Zacchaeus, or the shortcomings of the crowd (or both), I will note that it follows hard on the parable of the tax collector and Pharisee where it is the tax collector, humble and repentant, who is the one justified before God.

There are many complicated reasons for the many translations of the Bible. Whether we read Zacchaeus’ sentence in the future or present tense, the crowd’s “murmuring” (the same word, by the way, as the people of Israel “murmuring” against God after God has freed them from slavery in Egypt) is ugly and revealing. Zacchaeus’ encounter with Jesus and the crowd’s angry response is a wake-up call for us all to remember that Jesus’ proclaimed mission is to “seek out and save the lost,” which may include, it turns out, us.

Rev. Jen

[1] Peter Woods, “I am listening,” https://thelisteninghermit.com/2010/10/26/camouflaged-by-shame/

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 Twenty-second Sunday after Pentecost

Sunday Morning In-Person Morning Worship Service, November 6, 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 November 6.

The Latest Updates


We will be celebrating All Saints’ Day on November 6. (The actual day for All Saints’ is November 1). It will be a big day! We anticipate two baptisms, Jubilee and Amelia Majors, and ask you to keep them in your prayers.

We also will be remembering those we love who are in God’s nearer presence. We will have several ways of remembering: the Necrology, a list of the departed read aloud during the service; an ofrenda which is a special table/altar where you can put messages, tokens, and things loved by the deceased as a way of showing love and affection, and a craft after the service where we will create votives with a picture of those who are missed on them.


On All Saints’ we will have materials to make votives with your loved ones’ picture on them. We will need a photo that we can print on a xerox machine. Please send your pictures (hard copy or jpg) to the office by Monday, October 31; we will have them ready and printed for the craft on November 6.


On All Saints’, we are sure to sing a favorite hymn, “I sing a song of the saints of God” which tells us that we meet saints every day–“in shops or at tea”–or in Vestry, diocesan meetings and the sacristy in Altar Guild. At All Saints’ coffee hour on November 6 we will be celebrating our local saint Sue Murray’s leadership and compassionate heart. A catered light lunch and celebration will follow the service before we turn to our votive candle craft.


Civic Fellows members will rake leaves for Putnam County residents who need assistance or cannot rake leaves themselves on Sunday, November 6 from 1:00 – 3:00 p.m. Click here for the link that has a QR code that will take you to the registration form. Please reach out to civicfellows@depauw.edu with any questions. You can also call (812) 549-4313 or (765) 346-2241.


Rev. Jen would like to compile a list of hymns that are most loved by the congregation. Hymn selection is based on the lectionary and season of the year, and we would like to include your favorites in our choices!


Your annual Pledge Drive letter and forms should have arrived in the mail by now. Kate Berry is the Pledge Drive Coordinator this year. Forms are due back November 21.


Brian Cox, Junior Warden, has compiled a list of small jobs still needing done on the property before winter sets in. Please sign up to complete a task or two to help lighten the load. Click here for the list. Thanks in advance for helping keep St. Andrew’s beautiful!


On Tuesday, November 8 we will be reading and discussing Luke 21:5-19. You can find the week’s readings at lectionarypage.net. All are welcome!


We need a volunteer each week to be in the Elementary Youth classroom. Our director, Macie Barker, will teach the class; the volunteer will be there as a part of safe church procedures. Please consider this occasional ministry.



Once a month Sunday services have resumed at The Waters. The next service will be Sunday, November 13 at 2:00 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!


We continue to change, responding to both our county’s current CDC designation but also by the severity of the current variant. Currently 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, October 29

• 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
  • Menstrual Pads
  • Tampons

  • Toilet Paper

Your prayers are asked for:

The family of Jack Angleton, brother of Peggy Angleton
Haile Bane, grandson of Joanne Haymaker
Beth Benedix, friend to many of us at Saint Andrew’s
The family of Lee Bird, nephew of Lucy Wieland
Douglas Butler, brother-in-law of Claudia Butler
Richard A. Butler, father-in-law of Claudia Butler
Maureen Carkeek
Bernice Emrick, mother of Karen Hirt Mannon
The family of Robert E. Fatzinger, Sr., father of Barbara
Nancy Ferriani and the family of Bob Ferriani, friends of Warren and Connie Macy
Katie Gleichman, relative of Jim Ensley
The family of Mary Ellen Gurnon, aunt of Daniel and Stephanie Gurnon
The family of Roxanne Harrison, friend of Jen+
The family of Bob Haymaker
Kimberly Heithaus, niece of Joe and Jenny Heithaus
Shandol Hoover, friend of Dave and Sue Murray
Terumi Imai, friend of Jen+
Lisa Breese Kincaid, daughter of Bob and Mimi Breese
Grayson Lyons, great nephew of Peggy Angleton
The family of Winkie Mitchell, friend of Jen+
Mary Mountz
Bryan Murray and the Murray family
Lucas Murray, grandson of Dave and Sue Murray
Gordon Redden
The family of Margaret Sammons, friend and colleague of Jen+
The family of Jordan Sanders, sister of Jim Ensley
Mike Schmidt, brother of Renee Hood
Elizabeth and Natalie Sheffler, daughter and granddaughter of Page and Narda Cotton
Gloria Smith
The family of Susan Stewart, friend of Jen+
Skip Sutton
Karen Swalley, friend of Joanne Haymaker
Jerry Taylor, friend of Warren and Connie Macy
Sydnor Thompson, brother of Harriet Moore

Diocesan Cycle of Prayer:
The Bishop and staff of the Diocese of Indianapolis; The Rt. Rev. Jennifer Baskerville-Burrows, Canon Brendan O’Sullivan-Hale, The Rev. Canon Kristin White, Ms. Janet Brinkworth, Ms. Kim Christopher, Ms. Kelly Nickson, Ms. Jen Phelps, The Rev. Mary Taflinger, Ms. Erinna Vandever, The Rev. Fatima Yakubu-Madus.

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 England.

Birthdays: Jubilee Majors, November 6; Nancy Lovett, November 11

Anniversaries: None.


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,

Rev. Jen

Most research has shown that the common cup transmits fewer microorganisms than intinction. Counter-intuitive perhaps; the problem with intinction is that some fingers make contact with the chalice and/or wine and the possibility of fecal-oral transmission. I’ve collated several articles for those of you who’d like to read up on this.

  1. From Living Church (an Episcopal magazine): Click here https://afkimel.wordpress.com/2020/02/29/germs-viruses-and-the-common-cup-is-intinction-safer/
  2. The 1943 article by W. Burrows and ES Hemmens about use of silver chalice as safe for communion. It is on JSOTR; I can get the full article if you want it. Click here
  3. 1998 CDC statement Risk of infectious disease transmission from a common communion cup. Click here
  4. Anne LaGrange Loving, “Controlled Study on Intinction: a safer alternative”. Click here
  5. 1995 controlled study concludes that intinction appears to be less likely to transmit disease (but also notes that this depends on the microbes on the hands of parishioners and priest). Click here https://www.jstor.org/stable/44536847 (another JSTOR article if you’d like me to access it for you).


Special Events and Services

Print Friendly, PDF & Email