News from St. Stephens
"I will arise and go to my father, and will
say unto him, Father, I have sinned against heaven, and before thee,
and am no more worthy to be called thy son." Luke 15:18,19
Quinquagesima, the Sunday next before Lent
Sunday February 26, 2017 is
Wednesday March 1, 2017 is Ash Wednesday, the first
day of Lent
Services are held: Sunday, at 9:30 a.m.
(Please Call (805) 524-1697 or e-mail
for further information and location.
The Collect for Sexagesima
O Lord God, who seest that we put not our trust
in any thing that we do; Mercifully grant that by thy power we may
be defended against all adversity; through Jesus Christ our Lord.
Epistle: 1 Corinthians 13:1, page 122
Gospel: St. Luke 18:31, page 123
You will find the text of these lessions as well as the Collect
of the Day, the minor propers and sermons at
The Sunday next before Lent, the name meaning "fiftieth" because it
is the fiftieth day before Easter. It is sometimes called "Charity
Sunday" because the Epistle is 1st Corinthians 13 and the Collect
Prays for "Charity".
shelf or table made of wood or stone at the side of the Sanctuary
upon (Color, Violet) - The first day of Lent recalling our Lord's
victorious overcoming of temptation in the wilderness.are placed the Elements of the Holy Communion preparatory
to their Consecration.
Crosier or Crozier
French for "Cross-bearer) -The person who carries the Archbishop's
Cross (in the Church of England); The official Staff itself, carried
by a "chaplain" before an archbishop, terminating in a cross with
two horizontal bars, to be distinguished from the Pastoral Staff of
a bishop, although both are emblematic of pastoral authority.
The official Staff, carried on or before a bishop, terminating in a
shepherd's crook, in token of his pastoral authoriy, for the Bishop
by his Consecration is to "be a Shepherd of the flock of Christ, not
a wolf," he is to feed them and devour them not." (Prayer Book Page
Facebook Page For St. Stephens
the St. Stephens facebook page by clicking of the icon at the left.
ACA Web Site
Anglican Church in America, the ACA, has a new web address:
http://www.anglicanchurchinamerica.org. If you have
bookmarked the ACA web site in your web browser, you should
consider updating it to this address.
Be a beacon of His love and redeeming power, to a world dark and
"Small numbers make no difference to God. There is nothing small if God is in it."
Your prayers are important and do make a difference.
If you know of anybody who is interested in being part of
building Christ's Body, within a traditional Anglican Church, please
tell them about St.Stephens and ask them to contact me. I would be
pleased to call on anyone who might be interested.
If you have any pastoral requests or needs, please contact
me, at (805) 524-1697 or at
Your Servant in Christ
Fr. Bob Hammond
Food for Thought
"I'm not a man who constantly thinks up jokes.
But I think it's very important to be able to see the funny side of
life and its joyful dimension and not to take everything too
tragically. I'd also say it's necessary for my ministry. A writer
once said that angels can fly because they don't take themselves too
seriously. Maybe we could also fly a bit if we didn't think we were
— Pope Benedict XVI
The film Chocolat is based on the book of
the same name. The film relates the story of a small French town
during Lent. Everyone is trying hard to avoid rich foods but what
should open at the same time? A chocolate shop. It is agony to walk
past the shop with its velvety chocolate smells. You can’t help but
think that the townsfolk had missed the point – especially when one
of the most self-righteous characters breaks into the shop and
gorges on the chocolates inside.
Lent is not about that kind of
‘self-denial.’ There is very little value in simply giving up stuff!
It's about giving stuff. Namely, the giving of your life to Christ.
Giving up stuff for Lent, as the rest of the New Testament reminds
us, does not really achieve anything.
— John Woods, Adapted from “Tests of Life”
Our Everyday Life Isn’t Everyday
When middle C is struck on the piano the
piston of bones in your inner ear vibrates exactly 256 times a
second. Each day you think about 50,000 different thoughts. When you
flex your hand you are using seventy different muscles. On the
surface of your body there are as many bacteria as there are people
on the surface of the earth. (I should have skipped that one.) The
mystery of your birth, the mystery of the love you feel, the mystery
of the deepest part of you are all most improbable. You are an
Sam Keen wrote, "I suspect that we are all
recipients of cosmic love notes. Messages, omens, voices,
revelations, and appeals are all part of each day’s events. If only
we know how to listen, to read the signs." Our everyday life isn’t
every day. The surface of what we see and hear isn’t all there is.
When you laugh, when you cry, when you feel something happening
inside, open yourself to the possibilities. The potential of the
life that we have been given is breathtaking. Open your eyes. Listen
carefully. Pay attention.
— Brett Younger, Glimpses of Glory
A Walking Children's Sermon
The Rev. Timothy J. Kennedy tells a wonderful
true story that is perfect for Ash Wednesday. It was told to him by
a colleague, Pastor Chris Mietlowski. It concerned a baptism that
Mietlowski once performed on an infant named Eric. Mietlowski took
Eric in his arms and traced the cross of Christ on Eric's forehead
using a special anointing oil.
Following worship, Eric's family celebrated
with a big backyard party. Family and friends ate burgers and chips
and played volleyball under a summer sun. Eric, being only six
months old, was left to nap in his backyard stroller. When Mom got
him up, whoops. Basted on Eric's forehead was the image of the
cross. Mom had forgotten to wash Eric's face following his baptism,
and the oil that the pastor had traced onto his forehead acted the
opposite of a sun screen. The Cross of Christ was imprinted on
Eric's forehead. "For several weeks until it completely
disappeared," says Rev. Kennedy, "that cross was a wonderful
reminder as to the meaning of Baptism and a reminder that the Cross
of Jesus was 'written' upon Eric's forehead."
And what a powerful witness it was, says Rev.
Kennedy. "Eric's Mom and Dad had to explain the cross to the
pediatrician, to the neighbors, to the stranger in the grocery
store. For a few weeks, Eric was nothing less than a [living]
children's sermon. It was only a bit of a sunburn to be sure, but
[it was] the best basting a child can have to be marked with the
cross of Christ! And why not? That cross is to be the foundation of
that child's life."
If I read the little book of Joel right, God's
desire is not that we wear a cross on our forehead, but that it be
basted on our hearts. "Rend your heart and not your garments," says
Joel 2:23. That's much harder to do, isn't it? It's much easier to
rend your clothes than to rend your heart. It's much easier to wear
a cross around your neck than it is to bear it daily in everything
— Timothy J. Kennedy, adapted by King
25 February 2017 at 1137 PST