Thoughts from Father Sam
The late 20th century brought a massive change in what Episcopalians do on Sunday mornings. For most of our church’s history, Anglicans celebrated communion at most once a month. But with the adoption of our current Prayer Book in 1979, we transformed into a people who treasure the eucharist as the center of our weekly worship life. And that focus has made our physical isolation since mid-March all the more difficult. We want to share the bread and cup as a marker both of God’s love for us and of our unity—but we know it would be foolhardy to do so. Our collective health is much more important right now.
So, in order for us to reclaim some of the power and meaning of this rite, beginning this Sunday we will worship following the 1979 Book of Common Prayer liturgy for the Holy Eucharist. We will continue on the Zoom platform (see below for the link to our worship, beginning at 10:00 am), and I will be celebrating at the altar in our beautiful church.
After the wine and bread have been consecrated, we will say together the following prayer:
My Jesus, I believe that you are truly present in the Blessed Sacrament of the Altar. I desire to offer you praise and thanksgiving as I proclaim your resurrection. I love you above all things, and long for you in my soul. Since I cannot receive you in the Sacrament of your Body and Blood, come spiritually into my heart. Cleanse and strengthen me with your grace, Lord Jesus, and let me never be separated from you. May I live in you, and you in me, in this life and in the life to come. Amen.
The apostle Paul assures us that nothing will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus (Romans 8:39). This practice of spiritual communion offers one way to sustain ourselves as we await the time when we can once again gather in the same space with other Christians to celebrate eucharist. Join us this Sunday as we proclaim once again our risen Lord. Welcome to St. Paul’s.
Come Hang out with St. Paul’s Folks – note the change to Thursdays!
Father Sam will be hanging out on Zoom on Thursday evenings from 6:00 to 7:00 PM. You may drop in for a few minutes or for the whole hour.
Click here on Thursday evenings any time between 6:00 & 7:00 PM to join Father Sam.
(dial in: 1-646-558-8656; meeting ID – 925 396 586)
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How You Can Help
St. Paul’s Church Community
In this unpredictable time, your church continues to give thanks for and need your support. If you are able to send your pledge now, thank you. If you are unable to give at this time, we understand. If you are able to give a bit more so we can respond to the needs of our community, we are very grateful. If you are in need, please contact Father Sam at firstname.lastname@example.org or 413-298-7001.
Since we are not gathering in person in community, we ask that you send your gifts in one of three ways:
- via mail to St. Paul’s Church, P.O. Box 704, Stockbridge, MA 01262
- give online through Realm, our trusted church financial giving site (click here to connect). You can give using a credit/debit card or via a bank draft. Just follow the prompts and you’ll be set.
- by texting one of the following options to 73256 on your smartphone.
Adjust the dollar amount as desired. Standard text message rates do apply.
- StPaulsStockbridge Pledge $100 (change amount to your usual pledge) to give towards your Annual Pledge
- StPaulsStockbridge Give $100 (change amount as desired) to give to the General Fund
- StPaulsStockbridge Easter $100 (change amount as desired)to give in celebration of Easter
- StPaulsStockbridge Discretionary $100 (change amount as desired)to give to the Rector’s Discretionary Fund
We pray, trusting that God will see us through this season and beyond. Thank you for giving generously to support the ministry of St. Paul’s Church.
Lee Food Pantry
During this time of social distancing we encourage you to continue to support our local food pantries. The need within the community is great. Monetary donations are most helpful at this time and allows the food pantry to provide what is needed most for those in need. You can make a donation to The Lee Food Pantry through Realm, our trusted church financial giving site. 100% of all donations go directly to the purchase of food for people in need.
DONATE TO LEE FOOD PANTRY HERE and select the Lee Food Pantry Fund.
If you have non-perishable food donations please leave them inside the church, near the back table. (Please be sure the food you bring for the pantry has not expired – we are not able to give away food beyond its freshness date.) Volunteers between the ages of 18-60 with no underlying health conditions continue to be needed at the pantry; for more information, or to volunteer, please send an email to Father Sam.
Resources for Worship and Prayer
A New Printable Bulletin to accompany our online service is now available. The bulletin for this week is attached to this email as a PDF file or you may access it here, Bulletin – The Second Sunday after Easter. Everything you need to participate is included in the bulletin.
|This Sunday, April 19|
|The Rev. Sam Smith|
The Rev. Jane Tillman
|Next Sunday, April 26|
|The Rev. Sam Smith|
Parish Prayer List
- People we pray for on Sundays: Cecilia, Katrina
- Long-term prayer list: George, Jeff, David, Doug, Barbara, Charles, ZsuZsa, Tom, Rich, Ronnie, Karen, Michael, Christy, John, George, Khali, Brian
- Prayers for the repose of the soul of Frank Tedeschi
- Our partners at Grace Church, Great Barrington and the Rev. Janet Zimmerman; Trinity Episcopal/Christ Lutheran, Sheffield and the Rev. Erik Karas; the Austen Riggs community and the Riverbrook Residence; victims of violence, abuse, persecution and disaster at home and abroad
- Outreach Ministries of the Week: Cathedral of the Beloved
- Diocesan Cycle of Prayer: St. Luke’s, Lanesboro
- Anglican Cycle of Prayer: Church of Ireland
- Birthdays: Kim Savery (16th), Diane Dillon (23rd), Arthur Schwartz (25th)