June 25, 2015

Prelude "Down by the River to Pray"
[Don’t miss Picnic picture gallery below]
Services for this coming Sunday, June 28th and the Fifth Sunday after Pentecost, will be at 8 and 10 AM, with coffee hour following both services. We hope you will join us for worship and fellowship.
Readings for this Sunday: 2 Samuel 1:1, 17-27, Psalm 30 1-6, 12-13, 2 Corinthians 8:7-15, Mark 5:21-43.
Reminder: Next Sunday, July 5th, we will have ONE service only, at 9 o’clock. Since this is will be July 4th weekend and often a time for returning friends, family members, and guests, don’t hesitate to remind folks that the service will be at 9, rather than 10.
 The 78th General Convention of the Episcopal Church opens today in Salt Lake City, Utah. I encourage you to take some time at the Convention website  http://www.generalconvention.org/ You will have access to the “Blue Book,” which contains all the resolutions, as well as daily reports.
General Convention takes place every three years and runs for slightly longer than one week. It is an intense, exciting, legislative event that shapes our church through democratic action by the House of Bishops and the House of Deputies, guided by the Holy Spirit. We will be represented by our diocesan deputation consisting of four lay deputies (Cathie Lewis is one of the alternates and will be there.), four clerical deputies, and our bishop.
A scan through the Blue Book will give you a sense of the vast range and depth of the resolutions that will be addressed. To name just a few:
·         The Election of the next Presiding Bishop
·         Issues of restructuring and re-imagining the Episcopal church and seminaries
·         Developing and maintaining online resources for licensed lay leadership in small congregation
·         Urging all congregations to establish relationship-based social justice minitreis with the people we serve
·         Pastoral ministry resources for victims of trauma
·         Taking a fresh look at Just War tradition as it applies to cyber warfare and robotics
·         Calling on the church to set a time of discernment regarding economic investment/divestment strategies.
·         Developing formation materials that relate to the 5 Marks of Mission
·         Urging all to become members of FORMA (www.episcofroma.org)
·         Developing liturgical materials to honor God in creation
·         Authorizing a variety of liturgies relating to Marriage and the Blessing of Lifelong Covenants
The New Hampshire deputies will be posting daily blogs reflecting on the issues under discussion, as well as personal reflections: http://nhgeneralconvention.blogspot.com/
The General Convention Media hub will have live streaming of some events: http://episcopaldigitalnetwork.com/gc/
Episcopal News Service (ENS):  http://episcopaldigitalnetwork.com/ens
And for on-site daily news coverage, opinions, and analysis from different perspectives:
Center Aisle  http://centeraisle.net/
Episcopal Café  http://www.episcopalcafe.com/
from the progressive perspective of “The Consultation:  http://www.theconsultation.org/
The internet makes it possible to be well-connected to this core event in the life of our church from the comfort of your own home … or wherever your mobile device takes you! I encourage you to jump in and explore. One suggestion is to zero in on a few issues that interest you and track them closely. You might want to interact with blog posts, especially with our own deputation. And regardless of your internet explorations, please KEEP GENERAL CONVENTION ACTIVELY IN YOUR PRAYERS, including prayers for strength and sustenance for the bishops and deputies, who will be working (often for grueling hours) to shape this branch of Christ’s Church to be all that we can be for the benefit of this world and to the glory of God.
Kayaks at the ready
 Picnic Reflections….
The weather may not have been what we had hoped for, but the rain was its own gift to our verdant world, and we all stayed dry under the pavilion. We missed you if you stayed home, but offer the gallery of pictures that follows.
Special thanks:
·         To David and Carol for taking care of the food arrangements
·         To Tom and Duane for getting the grills
·         To Tom, Jim, and Beverly for grilling
·         To Chris, Carolyn and Sammie for their impromptu sung prelude “Down by the River to Pray”
·         To Duane for leading the choir and the choir for their wonderful support of all of us in our hearty singing
·         To Sammie and Lisa for their altar guild work involved with taking church on the road!
·         To our photographers: Duane, Connor, Melissa, and Albert (And if there were more of you, please send your pix. Every photographer offers a different perspective!)
·         To those of you who made financial contributions
·         To the bakers, salad-makers, and snack provider
·         To ALL of you who came, for your enthusiasm, faithfulness, and hearty willingness to celebrate and delight in God’s creation, undaunted by dampness and cool temperatures
·         And to our children – some of whom flaunted the weather entirely and had a great time swimming!!!
Blessings, All!
See you in church!

Altar frontal, stole, and pillow designed and sewn by children of the parish
during our Liturgical Arts group two years ago
One of our parish photographers

Pondering the implications of the Gospel together
Delicious desserts, including Bunker strawberry
brownies and Preston blue-frosted
cupcakes (Blue's the water) with fish-shaped sprinkles.

Ellie’s t-shirt:
Laudamus te. Benedicimus te. Adoramus te. Glorificatmus te.
Translation: We praise you, we bless you, we adore you, we glorify you … for thy great glory!