Annual Parish Meeting — this Sunday, January 28, 2024, immediately following a combined service at 10:00 a.m. It is very important that all parishioners attend this meeting, as the Parish’s budget and other business matters will be discussed and voted on. If you cannot attend this meeting and have not already provided a proxy, please respond to this email and state in your email to whom you want to provide your proxy (can be the Rector, Senior Warden, Junior Warden, or any member of the parish who will be in attendance).
New Bible Study by Father Bragg starting Wednesday January 31 at 7:30 PM, church undercroft, "The Gospel of Saint Mark in the World of Saint Mark" (more information on this interesting new Bible study by Father Bragg can be found later in this e-letter)
Septuagesima Bulletin for Combined 10:00 AM Sunday Service
One of the largely forgotten great churchmen of the nineteenth century is Richard Whateley, an English academic, economist, and theologian who became the energetic and effective Anglican Archbishop of Dublin in 1831. Whately was a writer and speaker of both deep learning and a gift for brief and precise language that made him one of the most quotable clergy of his day. If you Google “Richard Whateley quotes” I can almost guarantee that you will quickly see why.
On the matter of the relationship of divine revelation to reason, he wrote “As the telescope is not a substitute for, but an aid to, our sight, so revelation is not designed to supersede the use of reason, but to supply its deficiencies.”
It is a common error to think that revelation, especially scriptural revelation, should displace human reason for Christians, a position which ignores Jesus' words in Matthew 22:37 “Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind,” words which we hear at nearly every celebration of the Mass. Our reasoning, our ability to think logically about our lives and our world, is a gift from God.
When rightly used it can lead us to understand a great deal, but it cannot answer the most important questions of all. It cannot tell us why we exist nor can it explain any of the greatest mysteries of our existence.
Some of the greatest minds of the human race have wrestled with matters such as “What does it mean to be fully human,” “What is the good life,” and “What is the best form of human community,” and they have come up with wildly differing answers. This is true in part because they brought to these questions differing unproven assumptions about the nature of human beings themselves, assumptions that simply cannot be either proven or disproven. Are we Rousseau's noble savage or Hobbes's nasty brute?
Revelation is God's way of showing His people things that we need to know in order to live the lives that he intends us to live with confidence and courage. Whateley's point is that revelation can show us things that reason cannot. These revealed truths then become the basis for our use of reason in living out the challenges and opportunities that with which the particular circumstances of our lives present us.
It is obvious that to the Christian the greatest of these revelations is His revelation of Himself to us in His Incarnation in Jesus Christ and in His Passion, Death, and Resurrection. In this he shows us His absolute love for us and His absolute power to open to us a way to claim all of what the Morning Prayer service calls us to thank Him for when we pray in the General Thanksgiving: “We bless thee for our creation, preservation, and all the blessings of this life; but above all, for thine inestimable love in the redemption of the world by our Lord Jesus Christ; for the means of grace, and for the hope of glory.”
-- Father Bragg+
Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.
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New Bible Study by Father Bragg (Wednesday, January 31, 7:30 PM)
Those of you who have heard me preach know that I am convinced that a broad understanding of the religious, literary, historical, and cultural worlds in which the books of Scripture were produced can be of great value. I would like to test that by offering a somewhat different Bible study course beginning on Wednesday, 31 January. The title is “The Gospel of Saint Mark in the World of Saint Mark.” The goal is to provide a good deal of background material before examining the Gospel itself in both the King James Version and the Oxford Annotated Revised Standard Version (NOT the New Revised Standard Version). I would give at least two and possibly more lectures before addressing the text itself and then offer further context as we proceed through the Gospel. The sessions will each start at 7:30 PM in the undercroft and last no more than ninety minutes in a lecture/question and answer/discussion format. Look forward to seeing you starting this coming Wednesday evening.
SERVICES & EVENTS
Sunday January 28 Combined 10 AM Service followed by Annual Parish meeting, It is very important that all parishioners attend this meeting, as the Parish’s budget and other business matters will be discussed and voted on. If you cannot attend this meeting and have not already provided a proxy, please respond to this email and state in your email to whom you want to provide your proxy (can be the Rector, Senior Warden, Junior Warden, or any member of the parish who will be in attendance).
Wednesday, 12 noon, Holy Communion and anointing for healing
Saturday February 17, MEN'S GROUP, 8:30 AM, breakfast by Chef Extraordinaire Claude Crump, Grits by Fr. Roddy, Bible study by Fr. Bragg. Great food and fellowship
Monday February 26, 7:30 PM, Vestry meetings, members of the parish are always welcome
Each month parishioners provide food for the Christ House food bank and things needed for babies and infants to the local crisis pregnancy center. St. Andrew & St. Margaret parish has a long history of helping others in the community. Please take a look at the lists below and, if you can, please provide some of the needed items. You can also help by donating money through the secure donation button in this e-letter by selecting Charity & Mercy in the drop down menu on the donation page. Your help is needed. Thank you.
Please help this month with a food donation if you are able. Christ House is very thankful for the food we provide to them each month. Please also buy low sugar cereals (and not the kid's types that have lots of sugar). Current needs include the following:
• canned meats (chicken, corned beef, spam)
• peanut butter
• canned vegetables (corn, green beans - (regular and low sodium)
• individual fruit cups (low sugar)
• canned fruit (low sugar)
• cereal (low sugar)
• pasta (regular and gluten-free)
• instant potatoes
• Macaroni & cheese kits
• Coffee, cooking oil, flour, sugar
List of Needs for MaRIH Center (crisis pregnancy center)
MaRIH Center with its all volunteer staff provides help to mothers-to-be and mothers in need. If you can provide some of the items that are needed, please do so. (You can leave the donations where the food for the food bank is collected on the pew in the undercorft.)
In Bold and * are a critical need.
Diapers (sizes newborn, 1, 2, 3, 4*, 5*, & 6*)
Diaper rash ointment
Winter Clothing:0-3 mo*, 3-6 mo*, 12-18 mo*, 2T*
Formula: Simulac Advance Formula*
Formula: other but not recalled
Grocery gift cards*
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