Below is the text of my Easter Letter to you all. Also remember that we have a special time in-between the services this week to have brunch together. 9:30-10:30
Greetings in this joyous season of the Resurrection. When Jesus rises from death and then subsequently ascends to heaven and also sends back the person of the Holy Spirit, the main movements of the christian faith all come a wonderful completeness.
The story began with the creation of the world through god’s speaking, followed by the distortion of the fall and the struggle of humans to discover truth and meaning. Through the writings and the prophets, revelation began to lay down a rich background and understanding of the heart of the creator. When Jesus comes on the scene he does so in such a way that anyone can access him. It is his humility and his love that make him so attractive to us.
We have been reminded in this season of Lent however of the frailty and brokenness of the creation. This all comes to a dramatic moment in the death of Jesus upon the cross. It is not a long time, but it is a very dark time; the three days in the tomb, that are the very hinge point of human history. What emerges then, is a revelation that, whether you personally believe it or not, has changed the nature of all of creation. With the resurrection of Jesus the perspective and relationship that is available to us is completely changed. And there is more! The holy spirit is being poured out to anyone who desires it.
This is the age that we now live in. An age where relationship with the three persons of the trinity is not only possible, but normal. We gain a depth of understanding the heart and activity of God Himself and are forever linked to divine nature. All the riches of His creation are available to us now.
Jesus came so that we could be saved, healed and delivered, filled, equipped and sent out.
Rector of Renforth – The Day of Resurrection 2018
Mark Twain is understood to have said:
Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.
This may be the worst kept secret, but today Val and I would like to announce that we will retire from Parish of Renforth at the end of August this year.
Our last Sunday will be July 29th followed by our Vacation time.
August will be spent packing up and putting things in storage.
Val and I have thought and talked about doing a sailing adventure for awhile so early September we will set out on an extended Cruise on our boat “TEVAH” sailing down the eastern seaboard to Florida and then across the gulf stream to the Bahamas, where we will spend the winter.
Looking back over the past 20 years, our time here at St. James the less, has been rich with relationship, faith, the word of God and mission. We will always cherish the growth that we have seen in so many of you and ourselves over the years. We have celebrated together , we have grieved together, we have explored the Kingdom of God together and now it is time for something new.
St. James the Less Church in the Parish of Renforth
March 18, 2018 Fifth Sunday in Lent
Collects Almighty and everlasting God, you despise nothing you have made and forgive the sins of all who are penitent. Create and make in us new and contrite hearts, that we, worthily lamenting our sins and acknowledging our brokenness, may obtain of you, the God of all mercy, perfect remission and forgiveness; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.
Most merciful God,by the death and resurrection of your Son Jesus Christ, you created humanity anew. May the power of his victorious cross transform those who turn in faith to him who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.
FIRST READING: Jeremiah 31:31-34
31The LORD said: The time will surely come when I will make a new agreement with the people of Israel and Judah. 32It will be different from the agreement I made with their ancestors when I led them out of Egypt. Although I was their God, they broke that agreement. 33Here is the new agreement that I, the LORD, will make with the people of Israel:”I will write my laws on their hearts and minds. I will be their God, and they will be my people. 34“No longer will they have to teach one another to obey me. I, the LORD, promise that all of them will obey me, ordinary people and rulers alike. I will forgive their sins and forget the evil things they have done.”
PSALMODY: Psalm 51:1-12
1You are kind, God! Please have pity on me.
You are always merciful! Please wipe away my sins.
2Wash me clean from all of my sin and guilt.
3I know about my sins, and I cannot forget my terrible guilt.
4You are really the one I have sinned against; I have disobeyed you and have done wrong.
So it is right and fair for you to correct and punish me.
5I have sinned and done wrong since the day I was born.
6But you want complete honesty, so teach me true wisdom.
7Wash me with hyssop until I am clean and whiter than snow.
8Let me be happy and joyful! You crushed my bones, now let them celebrate.
9Turn your eyes from my sin and cover my guilt.
10Create pure thoughts in me and make me faithful again.
11Don’t chase me away from you or take your Holy Spirit away from me.
12Make me as happy as you did when you saved me; make me want to obey!
Prayer: Almighty God, to you all hearts are open, all desires known, and from you no secrets are hidden. Cleanse the thoughts of our hearts by the inspiration of your Holy Spirit, that we may perfectly love you, and worthily magnify your holy name; through Christ our Lord.
SECOND READING: Hebrews 5:5-10
5That is how it was with Christ. He became a high priest, but not just because he wanted the honor of being one. It was God who told him, “You are my Son, because today I have become your Father!”6In another place, God says, “You are a priest forever just like Melchizedek.”
7God had the power to save Jesus from death. And while Jesus was on earth, he begged God with loud crying and tears to save him. He truly worshiped God, and God listened to his prayers. 8Jesus is God’s own Son, but still he had to suffer before he could learn what it really means to obey God. 9Suffering made Jesus perfect, and now he can save forever all who obey him. 10This is because God chose him to be a high priest like Melchizedek.
GOSPEL: Luke 8:4-15 English Standard Version (ESV)
4 And when a great crowd was gathering and people from town after town came to him, he said in a parable, 5 “A sower went out to sow his seed. And as he sowed, some fell along the path and was trampled underfoot, and the birds of the air devoured it. 6 And some fell on the rock, and as it grew up, it withered away, because it had no moisture.7 And some fell among thorns, and the thorns grew up with it and choked it. 8 And some fell into good soil and grew and yielded a hundredfold.” As he said these things, he called out, “He who has ears to hear, let him hear.” 9 And when his disciples asked him what this parable meant, 10 he said, “To you it has been given to know the secrets of the kingdom of God, but for others they are in parables, so that ‘seeing they may not see, and hearing they may not understand.’ 11 Now the parable is this: The seed is the word of God. 12 The ones along the path are those who have heard; then the devil comes and takes away the word from their hearts, so that they may not believe and be saved. 13 And the ones on the rock are those who, when they hear the word, receive it with joy. But these have no root; they believe for a while, and in time of testing fall away.14 And as for what fell among the thorns, they are those who hear, but as they go on their way they are choked by the cares and riches and pleasures of life, and their fruit does not mature. 15 As for that in the good soil, they are those who, hearing the word, hold it fast in an honest and good heart, and bear fruit with patience.
Sentence: Anyone who serves me must follow me, says the Lord, and where I am, there shall my servant be also. John 12.26
Jonathan will be speaking about the third movement in “BELLS” today: Listen
St James the Less Church in the Parish of Renforth
November 6, 2016 Twenty-fifth Sunday after Pentecost
Collect Eternal God, who caused all holy scriptures to be written for our learning, grant us so to hear them, read, mark, learn, and inwardly digest them, that we may embrace and ever hold fast the blessed hope of everlasting life, which you have given us in our Saviour Jesus Christ, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.
FIRST READING: Job 19:23-27a
23I wish that my words could be written down 24or chiseled into rock. 25I know that my Savior lives,
and at the end he will stand on this earth. 26My flesh may be destroyed, yet from this body I will see God.
27Yes, I will see him for myself, and I long for that moment.
PSALMODY: Psalm 17:1-9 (Said Responsively)
1I am innocent, LORD!
Won’t you listen as I pray and beg for help?
I am honest! Please hear my prayer.
2Only you can say that I am innocent,
because only your eyes can see the truth.
3You know my heart,
and even during the night you have tested me
and found me innocent.
I have made up my mind never to tell a lie.
4I don’t do like others.
I obey your teachings and am not cruel.
5I have followed you, without ever stumbling.
6I pray to you, God, because you will help me.
Listen and answer my prayer!
7Show your wonderful love.
Your mighty arm protects those who run to you
for safety from their enemies.
8Protect me as you would your very own eyes;
hide me in the shadow of your wings.
9Don’t let my brutal enemies
attack from all sides and kill me.
God of truth and justice, watch over your people in adversity, that we may know the wonders of your love and see the glory of your presence; through Jesus Christ our Saviour.
SECOND READING: 2 Thessalonians 2:1-5, 13-17
When our Lord Jesus returns, we will be gathered up to meet him. So I ask you, my friends, 2not to be easily upset or disturbed by people who claim that the Lord has already come. They may say that they heard this directly from the Holy Spirit, or from someone else, or even that they read it in one of our letters. 3But don’t be fooled! People will rebel against God. Then before the Lord returns, the wicked one who is doomed to be destroyed will appear. 4He will brag and oppose everything that is holy or sacred. He will even sit in God’s temple and claim to be God. 5Don’t you remember that I told you this while I was still with you? 6You already know what is holding this wicked one back until it is time for him to come. 7His mysterious power is already at work, but someone is holding him back. And the wicked one won’t appear until that someone is out of the way. 8Then he will appear, but the Lord Jesus will kill him simply by breathing on him. He will be completely destroyed by the LORD’S glorious return.
9When the wicked one appears, Satan will pretend to work all kinds of miracles, wonders, and signs. 10Lost people will be fooled by his evil deeds. They could be saved, but they will refuse to love the truth and accept it. 11So God will make sure that they are fooled into believing a lie. 12All of them will be punished, because they would rather do evil than believe the truth.
13My friends, the Lord loves you, and it is only natural for us to thank God for you. God chose you to be the first ones to be saved. His Spirit made you holy, and you put your faith in the truth. 14God used our preaching as his way of inviting you to share in the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ. 15My friends, that’s why you must remain faithful and follow closely what we taught you in person and by our letters.
16God our Father loves us. He is kind and has given us eternal comfort and a wonderful hope. We pray that our Lord Jesus Christ and God our Father 17will encourage you and help you always to do and say the right thing.
GOSPEL: Luke 20:27-38
27The Sadducees did not believe that people would rise to life after death. So some of them came to Jesus 28and said: Teacher, Moses wrote that if a married man dies and has no children, his brother should marry the widow. Their first son would then be thought of as the son of the dead brother. 29There were once seven brothers. The first one married, but died without having any children. 30The second one married his brother’s widow, and he also died without having any children. 31The same thing happened to the third one. Finally, all seven brothers married that woman and died without having any children. 32At last the woman died. 33When God raises people from death, whose wife will this woman be? All seven brothers had married her.
34Jesus answered: The people in this world get married. 35But in the future world no one who is worthy to rise from death will either marry 36or die. They will be like the angels and will be God’s children, because they have been raised to life. 37In the story about the burning bush, Moses clearly shows that people will live again. He said, “The Lord is the God worshiped by Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.” 38So the Lord isn’t the God of the dead, but of the living. This means that everyone is alive as far as God is concerned.
Sentence: Jesus Christ is the first born of the dead; to him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen see Revelation 1:5-6
Donations for seafarers Christmas packages are now being requested. There is a list in the Narthex. Please sign up and let us know now what you would like to contribute. We will be purchasing what ever else is needed the week of December 4th – 10th Sunday after church on the 11th will be the packing day.
On Thursday Dec 8 St James the less church welcomes seniors in the area to:
an Advent Afternoon Tea. 2:00-4:00 Please talk with Sue, Sharon or Ada if you would like to help plan and run this event.
Exchange of ideas and resources for personal needs.
A cup of tea and light snacks
Some inspirational thoughts
We are looking for a volunteer to take the Remembrance Day Wreath to the Cenotaph service on the 11th. Please indicate to Eric if you are able to do that in remembrance of the members of this Parish lost in war.
Here are the details. After a short (45 min) service.
Please organize your selves into groups as quickly as possible.
*Every person matters Young or old.
*Prayer is the “work” of the Church.
*We are praying “on site with insight”
*Ask God to prepare your heart to “listen” as well as to help you pray
*Prayer is a two way communication.
At approximately 11:15 we will depart in groups to the following places.
Places to pray.
1 Dorothy Buckley’s home overlooking the entire parish. (Max 6)
2 Walking through K-Park
3 Walking along Rothesay Road and along the Shore Road.
4 At the top of the Fox Farm Road. Entrance to the community.
5. Walking or Driving through some of the side streets as the spirit leads
What to Pray
Lord Reveal your heart for this place
Lord what have you already begun?
Lord show us where to join you
When to eat and share
Please return to the Rectory by 12:15 at the latest.
We have asked people to bring a salad or a dessert to share.
Eric will have corn and hot dogs ready to serve. We will eat and then share and note our impressions.
We should be done at about 1:30
Prayer Walk 2016
This sunday is our annual prayer walk and corn boil. We will have a short (45min) service at 10:30 followed by a time to go into the community to pray in a number of designated locations. After the time of prayer you are invited to come back to the Rectory and enjoy some Corn and Hot Dogs. We are asking you to come and to bring a salad or dessert to share as well. Prayer is the work of the church and we hope that you will join us this sunday. Specific instructions and options will be given out during the service. Please call Eric if you have questions. Volunteers would be welcome to help with making tea and coffee and setting out the food.
St. James the Less Church in the Parish of Renforth
September 4, 2016 Sixteenth Sunday after Pentecost
Collect: Stir up, O Lord, the wills of your faithful people, that richly bearing the fruit of good works, we may by you be richly rewarded; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who is alive and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever.
FIRST READING: Deuteronomy 30:15-20
15Today I am giving you a choice. You can choose life and success or death and disaster. 16-18I am commanding you to be loyal to the LORD, to live the way he has told you, and to obey his laws and teachings. You are about to cross the Jordan River and take the land that he is giving you. If you obey him, you will live and become successful and powerful.
On the other hand, you might choose to disobey the LORD and reject him. So I’m warning you that if you bow down and worship other gods, you won’t have long to live.
19Right now I call the sky and the earth to be witnesses that I am offering you this choice. Will you choose for the LORD to make you prosperous and give you a long life? Or will he put you under a curse and kill you? Choose life! 20Be completely faithful to the LORD your God, love him, and do whatever he tells you. The LORD is the only one who can give life, and he will let you live a long time in the land that he promised to your ancestors Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.
PSALMODY: Psalm 1 (Said Responsively)
1God blesses those people who refuse evil advice
and won’t follow sinners
or join in sneering at God.
2Instead, the Law of the LORD makes them happy,
and they think about it day and night.
3They are like trees growing beside a stream,
trees that produce fruit in season
and always have leaves.
Those people succeed in everything they do.
4That isn’t true of those who are evil,
because they are like straw blown by the wind.
5Sinners won’t have an excuse on the day of judgment,
and they won’t have a place with the people of God.
6The LORD protects everyone who follows him,
but the wicked follow a road that leads to ruin.
Giver of life, save us from the desert of faithlessness and nourish us with the living water of your word, that we may bring forth fruit that will last, in the name of Jesus Christ our Saviour.
SECOND READING: Philemon 1-21
1From Paul, who is in jail for serving Christ Jesus, and from Timothy, who is like a brother because of our faith.
Philemon, you work with us and are very dear to us. This letter is to you 2and to the church that meets in your home. It is also to our dear friend Apphia and to Archippus, who serves the Lord as we do.
3I pray that God our Father and our Lord Jesus Christ will be kind to you and will bless you with peace!
4Philemon, each time I mention you in my prayers, I thank God. 5I hear about your faith in our Lord Jesus and about your love for all of God’s people. 6As you share your faith with others, I pray that they may come to know all the blessings Christ has given us. 7My friend, your love has made me happy and has greatly encouraged me. It has also cheered the hearts of God’s people.
8Christ gives me the courage to tell you what to do. 9But I would rather ask you to do it simply because of love. Yes, as someone in jail for Christ, 10I beg you to help Onesimus! He is like a son to me because I led him to Christ here in jail. 11Before this, he was useless to you, but now he is useful both to you and to me.
12Sending Onesimus back to you makes me very sad. 13I would like to keep him here with me, where he could take your place in helping me while I am here in prison for preaching the good news. 14But I won’t do anything unless you agree to it first. I want your act of kindness to come from your heart, and not be something you feel forced to do.
15Perhaps Onesimus was taken from you for a little while so that you could have him back for good, 16but not as a slave. Onesimus is much more than a slave. To me he is a dear friend, but to you he is even more, both as a person and as a follower of the Lord.
17If you consider me a friend because of Christ, then welcome Onesimus as you would welcome me. 18If he has cheated you or owes you anything, charge it to my account. 19With my own hand I write: I, PAUL, WILL PAY YOU BACK. But don’t forget that you owe me your life. 20My dear friend and follower of Christ our Lord, please cheer me up by doing this for me.
21I am sure you will do all I have asked, and even more.
GOSPEL: Luke 14:25-33
25Large crowds were walking along with Jesus, when he turned and said:
26You cannot be my disciple, unless you love me more than you love your father and mother, your wife and children, and your brothers and sisters. You cannot come with me unless you love me more than you love your own life.
27You cannot be my disciple unless you carry your own cross and come with me.
28Suppose one of you wants to build a tower. What is the first thing you will do? Won’t you sit down and figure out how much it will cost and if you have enough money to pay for it? 29Otherwise, you will start building the tower, but not be able to finish. Then everyone who sees what is happening will laugh at you. 30They will say, “You started building, but could not finish the job.”
31What will a king do if he has only ten thousand soldiers to defend himself against a king who is about to attack him with twenty thousand soldiers? Before he goes out to battle, won’t he first sit down and decide if he can win? 32If he thinks he won’t be able to defend himself, he will send messengers and ask for peace while the other king is still a long way off. 33So then, you cannot be my disciple unless you give away everything you own.
Sentence: Let your countenance shine upon your servant and teach me your statutes. Psalm 119:135
Notices and other Important things.
Time with Bishop David this Thursday evening at 7 in the Church. If you are concerned at all with the decision of the Anglican Church of Canada to begin the process of changing the Definition of Marriage from “one man and one woman” to “one person to another person” Than you really need to be here to help us all process the way forward. There are some resources on the Narthex table that may help. I was with the clergy of the diocese and Bp David for most of this past week. It was an encouraging time.
Annual Parish Prayer walk Sept 25th (Bridgetown service at 9:30) and Corn boil on the Rectory Lawn. We have done this several times now and always with real results (Renforth Wharf Days, Health Wellness and Safety ministry to Seniors) We will combine this with Bridgetown at 9:30 and follow it up with a Corn-boil on the lawn to discuss our impressions from God after our time of prayer. We will have a short service at 10:30 and then be sent out to pray.
The Blessing of the Animals at the zoo will take place on October 9th That is also Thanksgiving Sunday but it will be a fun afternoon to bring kids to. 2:00
Alpha will begin the following week Oct 16th on Sunday Evenings Sign up in the Narthex for yourself and friends. Val and I will host the first group, if there are more then 10 we will look for another host family. We will come together for the weekend on the Holy Spirit. The new Alpha Film series will be used. “Alpha as you have never seen it before”