February 25, 2010

A few reminders for the coming week:

This sunday, the Second Sunday of Lent, we will have services at 8:00 and 10:00. The Rev. Ellie McLaughlin, former rector at St. Barnabas, Berlin NH, a close friend of mine and of this church, will be preaching and presiding. Ellie has been with us a number of times in the past and is very much looking forward to being at Saint Andrew's.

We trust (hope) that the snow and power-outages will be taken care of by Sunday. If you are in doubt about whether there might be a necessary change in the service schedule, Sammie Wakefield (our Sr. Warden) will post a message on the church's phone service by 6:30 on Sunday. As always, if the weather doesn't seem safe to you, use your good judgement.

Duane and I will be taking a few days of vacation. I will be back in the office on Thursday, March 4th. If you have questions or pastoral concerns or emergencies in my absence, call Sammie (476-3246), Sally DeGroot, Jr. Warden (323-2050), Peg or Tom Reinfuss (367-8498), or the church office on Tuesday or Wednesday.

Holy Living: Approaches to Prayer, our Lenten study group, will be meeting on the following schedule. (Please note this reflects some changes, due to the weather this past week.)
Tuesday sessions:  March 9, 16, and 23 at 5;00 pm
Wednesday sessions: March 10, 17, and 24 at 10:00 am, followed by eucharist at 11:30.

Between the two groups about 23 people have signed up to participate! There is no "assigned text." The best preparation for the first session is to be in touch with prayer as you know and experience it, remembering that there are no "experts" in this business and the only "right answer" for you is your own experience! Of course, the best way to be in touch with prayer is to pray!
Photocopied handouts will be available in your mailboxes on Sunday March 7th. Additional participants are welcome, and it is fine if you  need to trade off between the Tuesday and the Wednesday meetings.

And some food for thought that I came upon recently, relating to Sunday's Gospel...

Lutheran professor David Sersen shares this experience from Tanzania:
"I spent several months in Tanzania where each day and night I passed the chicken house on the way to and from the campus. Regularly, mother hens had new broods of downy chick that stayed close as they pecked around in the grass. At night, one by one, they'd climb under her breast and you could see nothing but the hen on guard, her chicks lost somewhere under her feathers. When a fox attacked by night, she could not run away. Not a mother hen! She bared her breast and the fox took her first. In the morning, there was nothing but a cluster of of feathers here and there, and little chicks running around on their own. 
"The mother hen represents a new form of power and leadership, the one for others, the servant leader, the one whose extravagant love considers the welfare of her own foremost thus the means of survival over against the attack of the wily foxes of this world is  provided, not by retaliation or brute force, but by gathering the innocent, the victims, into a community in which the love of the mother hen lives on even after her death!"

(I'm curious, all you hen-keepers. Does this fit with your experiences?)