Category: Announcements

Palm Sunday

Palm Sunday

 

 The passion begins. Ironically, the journey toward the most intense suffering is launched at the moment of greatest accolade. This is always the insidious deception associated at times with human approval. It is often fickle, shallow and insincere. Perhaps the Jubilation of Palm Sunday was not insincere. No doubt it was spontaneity without commitment, which usually leads to disaster in this life. Much has been written about the meaning of the palms. In the Jewish world, the palms would have probably come from Jericho, not an insignificant piece of information. Old Testament prophets foretold of a day when a new Joshua, an Elijah figure, would enter the land and retake it from the Gentiles. Remember, Joshua of old was the great military leader who brought down the walls of Jericho, the entry point for conquering the Canaanites The remarkable general of the army of God led the nation of Israel on to a complete route the land that had been given them by God. By the time of Jesus’ day, the Jews were in the land. Now they were dominated by the Gentiles, the Romans. It was in one sense the total upending of what Joshua, by the way the Old Testament name for Jesus, had accomplished.  In the former day, the Israelites had come into the land of the Gentiles and established the rule of God. At a later day, Jesus’ time, the Gentiles had overrun the people of God and set up their image over the land. The prophets had anticipated this moment. Under the inspiration of God, they had revealed, however, that a new Joshua would arrive in history. Like the Joshua of old, he would start at Jericho and take the land. Thus, the palms from Jericho were a symbol of the kind of conquest that they thought was about to occur, military triumph. Unfortunately, they forgot the rest of the teachings of the prophets. The new Joshua was to be the suffering servant of Isaiah, He would be stricken and smitten on His back for the sins of the world. Through sufferings and death, not power and might, the Gentiles, and even Jesus’ own people, would be overcome. What the people declared was true. It just did not come about the way they thought it would. Indeed, that first week long ago, had it not been for God’s purposes in the midst of the catastrophe, would have ended in complete defeat. But the darkness shrouding the cross on Good Friday was actually the beginning of victory. Just as the ecstasy of Palm Sunday was the start of something opposite, so was the darkest moment of the Christ’s passion. For, to put Christ on the cross, He had to be raised up high. And that raising up hinted at an even greater rising, the Resurrection!

 

Wednesday Evenings during Lent

Wednesday Evenings during Lent

Each Wednesday during Lent, we will begin with Holy Eucharist with Penitential Office at 5:45 p.m. After the Eucharist, we will meet for a soup and salad dinner in the parish hall. These meatless soup dinners are designed for us to come together as a parish family to support one another with our Lenten fasting. This will be followed by a Lenten study on the Core Values of Christianity. Please join us each Wednesday during Lent for these special evenings as we gather as a parish family. There is a sign-up sheet in the Parish Hall for those wishing to help out by bringing a pot of soup, or a salad, or help with clean up. Lenten Soup Nights are each Wednesday from March 8 through April 5.

Ash Wednesday

Ash Wednesday

Our traditional Ash Wednesday services of Holy Communion with the Imposition of Ashes will be this Wednesday, March 1. There will be a Said Service at 7:00 a.m. and a Choral Service at 7:00 p.m. Please plan to worship at one of these services and then leave in silence as we contemplate the seriousness of our Lenten Fast in Christ. (Ash Wednesday is a Prayer Book Day of Obligation.)

Shrove Tuesday Pancake Supper

Shrove Tuesday Pancake Supper

Join us this Tuesday, February 28, for our traditional Shrove Tuesday Pancake supper in the parish hall to celebrate the end of the Epiphany Season and to prepare for the Lenten Fast. We will serve pancakes, sausage, and bacon along with coffee, orange juice and milk to drink. We need everyone’s help in this project, most especially in the area of ticket sales . . . the pre-sale of tickets is where we make the majority of our income . . . please EVERYONE get tickets this morning from Jimmy Henry to sell now!! We also need volunteers to help cook, serve, and clean up. There is a sign-up sheet in the parish hall . . . please sign up to help where you can!

This is traditionally the day when all the leavening and sugar is used up in the home to prepare for Lenten fasting. This is done symbolically by cooking oodles of pancakes and using up all the syrup for dinner. It is called Shrove Tuesday because it is the day for shriving (old English verb meaning to cut off sins by going to confession) in preparation for receiving ashes the next day.

The Advent Wreath and Family Evening Prayer

The Advent Wreath and Family Evening Prayer

advent-wreath

“In family practice, the Advent wreath is most appropriately lit at dinner time after the blessing of the food. A traditional prayer service using the Advent wreath proceeds as follows: On the First Sunday of Advent, the father of the family blesses the wreath, praying: O God, by whose word all things are sanctified, pour forth Thy blessing upon this wreath, and grant that we who use it may prepare our hearts for the coming of Christ and may receive from Thee abundant graces. Who livest and reignest forever. Amen.” He then continues for each of the days of the first week of Advent, O Lord, stir up Thy might, we beg thee, and come, that by Thy protection we may deserve to be rescued from the threatening dangers of our sins and saved by Thy deliverance. Who livest and reignest forever. Amen.” The youngest child then lights one purple candle.

During the second week of Advent, the father prays: O Lord, stir up our hearts that we may prepare for Thy only begotten Son, that through His coming we may be made worthy to serve Thee with pure minds. Who livest and reignest forever. Amen.” The oldest child then lights the purple candle from the first week plus one more purple candle.

During the third week of Advent, the father prays: O Lord, we beg Thee, incline Thy ear to our prayers and enlighten the darkness of our minds by the grace of Thy visitation. Who livest and reignest forever. Amen.” The mother then lights the two previously lit purple candles plus the rose candle.

Finally, the father prays during the fourth week of Advent, O Lord, stir up Thy power, we pray Thee, and come; and with great might help us, that with the help of Thy grace, Thy merciful forgiveness may hasten what our sins impede. Who livest and reignest forever. Amen.” The father then lights all of the candles of the wreath.

Since Advent is a time to stir-up our faith in the Lord, the wreath and its prayers provide us a way to augment this special preparation for Christmas. Moreover, this good tradition helps us to remain vigilant in our homes and not lose sight of the true meaning of Christmas” (by Fr. William Saunders).

 

Episcopal Visit- December 4

Episcopal Visit- December 4

Episcopal Visit – December 4: We are excited that the Rt. Rev. Jack L. Iker will be making his Episcopal visit to St. John’s on December 4. Bishop Iker will be the homilist and celebrant at a special 10:30 a.m. Eucharist. Two parishioners will be confirmed that morning. After the 10:30 a.m. Eucharist, there will be a special pot-luck lunch in honor of the Bishop’s visit. This will be a very special Sunday in the life of our parish, so please make every effort to be here on that Sunday as our Bishop ministers to us!images (4)

Trinity Sunday Pot-Luck Luncheon

Trinity Sunday Pot-Luck Luncheon

Following the 10:30 a.m. Eucharist this Sunday, there will be a pot-luck luncheon. Everyone please bring plenty of your favorite foods to share with your fellow parishioners and a healthy appetite! This is always a great time of fellowship!

Men’s Breakfast

Men’s Breakfast

 

All the men of St. John’s (as well as any friends that you may wish to bring) are invited to breakfast tomorrow morning at 8:00 a.m. in the parish hall. During breakfast, Fr. Michael will give a brief presentation on the topic of the importance and technique of prayer in our daily lives. This is a timely topic as the Men of St. John’s are seeking God’s guidance in the establishment of a Brotherhood of St. Andrew’s group in our parish and the ministry direction of the group.

DFW Cursillio:

DFW Cursillio:

The DFW Cursillo community is holding a witness talk and small group sharing event hosted by the Church of the Holy Comforter, Cleburne on Saturday May 14. The gathering, known as an Ultreya (which is Spanish for “onward!”) is open to all and is held to encourage & strengthen our walk with Christ.  Cursillo’s pillars are piety, study and action, and, “Make a friend, be a friend, bring a friend to Christ”. Since the next Cursillo at Camp Crucis will be in October, please use this chance to find out more about this renewal movement within the Church. The Ultreya starts with a potluck at 12 noon and ends around 2:00 p.m. (bring your favorite dish). The address is:  209 E Wardville St, Cleburne, TX, 76031.  Email or call Kyle Spradley with ANY questions.  kylespradley@gmail.com  972-523-1109.

The Feast of Ascension

The Feast of Ascension

The Feast of Ascension of our Lord is Thursday, May 5. We will have a special Eucharist that evening at 7:00 p.m. Please make plans to join us for this important Feast Day in the life of the Church.

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