15th Sunday after Pentecost – Proper 18
A Note from the Rector
Our dedicated vestry met last Monday evening. Because of the high rates of transmission of COVID-19 in our community, and at the strong recommendation of our bishop, the vestry has decided to make mask wearing a requirement for indoor services at this time. There are two important additional aspects of the vestry’s decision: First, this decision will be reevaluated every two weeks. There is cause for cautious optimism about the eventual decline of new infections caused by the Delta virus, and the vestry is committed to making decisions based on facts as they emerge. Second, masking for outdoor services will be optional. There is little evidence of the spread of the virus in outdoor settings, especially if reasonable social distancing is maintained. That leads to another announcement:
Starting September 19th and continuing to the beginning of November (at least), we will offer a family oriented, outdoor service of Holy Eucharist at 9AM. This service will include a brief object lesson sermon and will be approximately 25 minutes in length. The service will be followed by coffee and donuts. All are welcome to attend this service (not just families!). It is my hope that many will attend the 9AM service who have been hesitant or unable to join us at 10AM, or who will be hesitant now that there is a mask requirement in place. I hope that 9AM attenders will stick around on the church lawn for a few minutes after the service, and I hope that 10AM attenders will come a few minutes early to service, to grab a donut and some coffee yes, but also so that folks who haven’t seen each other in person in a while can connect or reconnect safely.
I know we are all frustrated and exhausted by this pandemic. I also know that masks are a political hot-button issue in the wider society right now. However, they are not a hot-button issue inside the Body of Christ. We Christians do not have to play by the rules of the stupid game our society is playing with all its recrimination, division, pride, and willful ignorance. We don’t have to follow the scripts laid out for us by our erstwhile political commitments or media consumptions. All these things are passing away, but one thing remains—we belong to Jesus. We belong to Jesus and that means we possess a freedom that transcends any so-called freedoms that any government could possibly give or take away. True freedom is the power we have to love. Exercise your true freedom! We have true freedom because we belong to Jesus. We don’t belong to the powers and principalities whose reign of disorder we see at work in our world. We don’t belong to any politician, influencer, or media personality. We don’t belong to any message or ideology that would try to enslave us in patterns of hatred, suspicion, and despair. We belong to Jesus, so our primary ethical concerns are to love God and to love our neighbors as ourselves. So, come to church because you love God. Wear a mask indoors at church because you love your neighbor. Have a great Labor Day weekend and see you soon!
You can view our live-stream on our YouTube channel.
A link to this video will be posted to Facebook.
Sunday, September 5, 2021 – 15th Sunday after Pentecost, Proper 18
Holy Eucharist, Rite II with Prayers of Spiritual Communion 10AM
The Rev. James Stambaugh, celebrant & preacher
Sunday, September 5, 2021 – Backpack Blessings on the Lawn
Prayers, Blessings and Fellowship 4PM
The Rev. James Stambaugh, preacher
Sunday, September 12, 2021 – 16th Sunday after Pentecost, Proper 19
Holy Eucharist, Rite II with Prayers of Spiritual Communion 10AM
The Rev. James Stambaugh, celebrant & preacher
Beginning September 13, Morning Prayer Rite Two will be held every Mon, Tue, Wed and Thurs at 9:15AM
Morning Prayer from the Book of Common Prayer is a beautiful service and is very ancient. The Daily Office is simply a cycle of prayer services that are prayed at set hours of the day. If you cannot join us in person, you can pray Morning Prayer at home. The service begins on p. 75 in the BCP.
Zoom Compline is held every night at 7:30PM
A brief time of prayer and checking in with other members of CHA
“Zoom Compline has been really helped me through this difficult time. It’s such a great way to close the day.” – CHA Member
Follow this link to join: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/233415613?pwd=dTBDeUhrUUdSak9MS3RUaXdDSDhpUT09 or call into the meeting toll-free 1-888-475-4499 You will be prompted to enter this meeting ID: 233 415 613 and passcode: love
Zoom Bible Study is held every Thursday at 11AM
We are doing a combined study of the Books of Daniel and Revelation. Please join us as we discover a new view on the never-changing promises of God. No previous experience required.
Follow this link to join: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/788355291?pwd=R2FQRWltZ01LWG92WGtPSm54cXJSUT09 or call 1-888-475-4499 US Toll-free You will be prompted to enter this meeting ID: 788 355 291 and passcode: love
*note: the passcode for all CHA Zoom meetings is “love”
Outreach – Up Next
September Food Drive – for distribution Wednesday, September 15
This month we’re collecting Pop Tarts. Please drop off your donations no later than Tuesday, 9/14 so they can be delivered to the mission on time. Our total donation of Honey Nut Cheerios totaled 86 boxes! Let’s see if we can meet or beat that record!
BACK TO SCHOOL SUPPLY DRIVE
Join us this Sunday afternoon for the blessing of the backpacks! Bring your family, friends and neighbors.
Thank you to our volunteers covering September lunches. We will be making bagged lunches for Project Share every other month. Our next need for volunteers will be November 2021 and January 2022.
Calling on our BAKERS! If you are able to make some individual treats – cookies, brownies, etc. to add to these lunches for any week in September, it would be greatly appreciated!
Please contact Cassie (610-608-5440) with any questions or to volunteer!
+ BLESSING OF THE BACKPACKS
Join us on THIS SUNDAY, September 5, at 4pm on the lawn when Fr. James will be asking God’s blessing on the backpacks that have been donated. You are encouraged to bring your own backpacks (or briefcases) to be blessed as well. Invite your friends and neighbors to come along for this short but meaningful service, Have fun with a Back-to-School photo booth and enjoy some treats and fellowship!
+ YOUTH CONFIRMATION CLASS
The first class will be held on Tuesday, September 21 from 6:30pm to 8:30pm. We’ll meet outside the church, under a pavilion, near the Kitchen door. If you haven’t signed up but would like to join us, please contact Fr. James. We’d love to have you with us!!!!
+ ORGANIZATIONAL MEETING RE: AID FOR AFGHAN REFUGEES
Join us on Thursday, September 16th @ 6:30 pm for a meeting to discuss ways we can make a difference in the lives of the Afghan refugees coming to our area. The meeting will be held via Zoom. Watch this space for further details.
+ COFFEE HOUR
In the past, we have put together a list of dates/parishioners to host coffee hour for the year. In light of the pandemic situation, we will be moving to “sign up” mode for the foreseeable future. If you are interested in hosting coffee hour, please visit this link to sign up for the Sunday of your choice. Please note: only snacks that are individually wrapped can be served.
+ MORNING PRAYER RETURNS!
Beginning Monday, September 13th, Morning Prayer will again be held in the church at 9:15 am every Monday through Thursday. Please join us if you are able. See Fr. James September newsletter note on showing up late for work!
+ CLOSET CLEANOUT
We are working to repurpose the closet on the left side of the Narthex into a sanctuary for prayer as well as a place where brides can sit while waiting for their wedding to begin. It would be helpful to have the closet cleaned out by the end of September so we can start creating the new space.
We are looking for:
- Two to four volunteers to help move a very heavy wardrobe out of the closet and into the vesting sacristy. This will also require moving the Pageant costume wardrobe out of the vesting sacristy and up to the Choir room. A dolly will be required and, just for fun, there are stairs involved. This is best done on an evening or weekend when the daycare is not in session.
- A home for the George Steck spinet piano that is currently in the closet. It is dusty, and needs some tuning, but it is in working order. It is free to a good home – but the new owner would need to provide for transport out of the building.
If you or someone you know can help with either or both of these projects, please contact Katie Gentile: email@example.com or 610-642-6617
+ BLOOD DRIVE SATURDAY OCT 9TH – PARISH HALL
We will be sponsoring a blood drive for the Red Cross on Saturday, October 9th in the Parish Hall between 9am and 2pm. Click here to schedule an appointment.
+ MAY WE PRAY FOR YOU?
Intercession brings before God the needs of others (BCP p.857)
The Parish Prayer list is included in the monthly newsletter that is sent through the mail. Additional copies are also available on the table in the Narthex. To add your prayer needs to the list, you can contact Fr. James, Nancy Haas, or use the form on our website.
+ CHURCH SERVICE ATTENDANCE
We look forward to seeing you back at church if you feel comfortable there. Masks are required in the church building. Services will also continue to be livestreamed on our YouTube Channel. Be sure to hit the SUBSCRIBE button!
During this time, the rector and trained Eucharistic ministers may visit others to bring them the Eucharist. Meeting in outdoor spaces of homes will be preferred. Contact Fr. James if you would like to schedule a visit.
You can still mail pledge contributions to the church at this time. The mail is checked regularly. You can also securely give online. Go to holyapostlespa.org and click on the “Give” button on the top right hand corner of the webpage.
+CHURCH OFFICE HOURS
Office hours for the week of September 5:
Monday – 9/6 – Office Closed – Labor Day
Tuesday – 9/7 – 1:00pm – 5:00pm
Wednesday – 9/8 – 1:00pm – 4:00pm
Friday – 9/10 – 9:00am – 12:00pm
+ HURRICAN IDA RELIEF
On Sunday, August 29, sixteen years after Hurricane Katrina hit the Gulf Coast, Hurricane Ida made landfall in the same region. This Category 4 storm brought flooding and damaging winds that caused a loss of water to hundreds of thousands and a loss of electricity to over 1 million people. Episcopal Relief & Development is working closely with the Diocese of Louisiana and other regional partners in what will be a long-term response. Your generous gift will help alleviate suffering for the most vulnerable residents impacted by Hurricane Ida. Please visit episcopalrelief.org/hurricane-relief to make a gift today.
+ ASK THE BISHOP
Youth across the diocese are sending in questions for the bishop to answer. What is your favorite food? animal? Watch it all here and send in your questions via video to firstname.lastname@example.org
+ BLUE JEANS DRIVE
The deacons of the diocese are leading a blue jeans collection. Blue jeans are durable and in need by those who are without shelter. They are asking churches – and you – to collect what you can so they can be delivered to those with the most need.
- Clean, gently worn jeans.
- Those jeans that are in the back of the closet that you will never wear again.
- Brand new jeans, in your size. (It’s good to be generous.)
Churches and individuals can drop off at St. John’s Diocesan Center (Norristown); bring to The Philadelphia Cathedral on 10/23 before the diocesan convention begins; or contact email@example.com to make other arrangements.
If you wish, you may leave your donated blue jeans in a bag or box in the Admin office. Katie will be taking a trip out to the Norristown drop off location on Thursday, October 14.
The following folks have birthdays in the month of September
3rd John Day
4th Eleanor (Nora) Stambaugh
If your birthday, or the birthday of another parishioner is missing, please notify the Parish Office at firstname.lastname@example.org