April Parish News and Reflection

You can read the April parish newsletter here.

Dear Family and Friends of Church of Our Saviour:

As I write this letter the skies are grey and snow is falling. Despite the calendar assuring us it is Spring, Winter still casts its long shadow. Yet, if we look hard, the signs of change are breaking in. Tulips, daffodils, and crocus are poking their heads out of the snow. If we look hard, the trees have buds just waiting to wave in the new season.

This is the story of nature, and in this blessed season of Lent and Eastertide, this is the story of our God—life from death, light from darkness, and hope from despair. This pattern woven into the fabric of creation is seen most beautifully and dramatically in the Resurrection of Jesus Christ. The Resurrection illuminates a reality often veiled by the course of daily life. Hate will not win. Separation will not stand. Death is not the final word. Hope is not in vain.

More than a system of holidays, beliefs, or rituals, the Christian faith is about proclaiming the Hope of Resurrection in the face of our darkest despair. We have been brought from death to life by the power of Christ’s Resurrection. In joy and sorrow, in health and sickness, in confidence and fear, in peace and division, this hope lives on.

God invites each of us to be messengers of hope. When we feed the hungry, pray for our enemies, accept people without condition, and love one another, we let the hope that is in us break through the icy ground welcoming God’s future of peace and unconquerable love.

I warmly invite you to celebrate the eternal hope of the Resurrection this Easter Morning, and through the special services of Holy Week. I also invite you to consider giving generously to our Easter Memorial Flower Donations and Festival Days Offering, assisting Church of Our Saviour to continue living out the reality of the Resurrection as we devote ourselves to the work Jesus started.

 

With joy and love,

The Reverend Rachael Pettengill-Rasure

March 2017 News and Reflection

You can view the March parish newsletter here.

Hello COS Family,

I came back to the church around this time last year after being away for over ten years, and it was a little peculiar for me. I would imagine that  Lent is an interesting time to visit a church for the first time – the liturgy is more penitential, the hymns are somber, and there’s less decor. But at the same time, Christian spirituality seems to reach its peak during Lent. It’s the time when we are  most reflective of the burden of sin in our lives and the redemptive gift of Christ’s suffering, death, and resurrection.

I had already been used to this shift in environs from my childhood growing up in the Roman Catholic Church. Back then, Lent meant giving up chocolate and soda for six weeks – which as an adult I may find silly, but it was a sacrifice for my eight or nine year old self. This year, I’m being thoughtful  about what I want to sacrifice and focus on in Lent, and not just give something up simply because I have to. I am committing to being more disciplined about my prayer life, more intentional about my time, and digging deep into the work of dismantling my internalized racism.

This may seem like a tall order for six weeks, but there’s no better time to start than now!

In faith,

Ricky
Life Together Fellow

Lent 2017 at COS

Lent at COS

Book Study Schedule:

1. March 2nd – Diane & Art (host), Lori & Dave (meal)
2. March 9th – Rachael & Matt (host), René (meal)
3. March 16th – Rebecca & Tricia
4. March 23rd – Fleeka & Michael
5. March 30th – Karen (host), Betsy (meal)
6. April 6th – Kate & Medhi

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Commissioning Our Marchers

Several COS parishioners will be marching in the upcoming Women’s March on Washington and Boston Women’s March. After our service today, we held a brief service of commissioning to bless them and pray  for them and these upcoming protests. Below is the text used.

Leader A: Will those who will be marching in Washington and Boston please stand and join hands?

The people do so.

Leader B: You who are members of this congregation have discerned a call to march for justice. You have been moved by the Spirit to protest and denounce bigotry in the name of Christ. Do you accept this call?

People: We do.

The people will respond to each of the following petitions with “Strengthen us, O God.”

Leader A: We pray, in the name of Our Lord, that the fires of your inner strength be stoked for this journey, for God has given you “a spirit of power and of love and of self-discipline”.

Leader B: We pray that you would join with all those gathering from every part of the land in mass prophetic witness and raise your voices against all forms of hatred and prejudice.

Leader A: We pray that as you may find yourself wearied by the journey, that you may find sustenance and rest, and that the Holy Spirit may comfort you in times of doubt.

Leader B: We pray for you, that amid tension, fear, and hostility, you may carry out this work you are called to do in grace and in safety and return to your homes and to this church in good health, full of the spirit of God.

Leader A & B: We bless you, servants of justice.