SPIRIT OF ST. STEPHEN'S CATHOLIC COMMUNITY
Worship: 2201 First Ave, Minneapolis MN 55404
Mail: c/o 106 E. 24th Street, Phone: 612-767-4530 Fax: 612-767-4534
19th SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME
August 13, 2017 ~ 9:30 A.M.
Community Council email@example.com: Cathy Heying, Karen Klein, Virgil Mathiowetz, Darlene Mattson, Mark Muller, Hugh Smeltekop and Jeanne Wingenter
Community Life Coordinator: Marilaurice Hemlock firstname.lastname@example.org
Spirit of St. Stephen’s Catholic Community is an independent Catholic community rooted in Vatican II and Catholic Social Teaching. We believe in the priesthood of all people of faith, and we center our worship on the Eucharist. We support each other in trying to follow the nonviolent Jesus who was radically inclusive. Justice and inclusion in our worship and in our community support our work for justice and peace in our world. We are living the questions, and listening for the Spirit's guidance. All are welcome.
Please pray for mercy for all those who live on death row across the country, especially those scheduled to be executed in the coming weeks including Marcellus Williams on 8/22/17 in MO; Mark Asay on 8/24/17 in FL; and Steven Long on 8/30/17 in TX. Please also pray for the victims of violent crime, all the families involved, the prison staff, and those who hold vigil to end the death penalty. For more information about efforts to abolish the death penalty, go to www.deathpenaltyinfo.org.
This week we pray with all who seek the presence of God in the truth of Christ. We pray with all who have known the awe of God in the sheer silence and with all who seek this God-graced silence. We pray in gratitude for the silence of meditation and the teachers who guide us in this prayer. We pray with all who have been taken up, survived, or wonder what is next after the heavy winds of a tornado, hurricane or tropical storm, the crushing rock of an earthquake or the blast of fire. We pray with all who know the fear of wind and waves, especially some of our ancestors who braved such to get to the land of hope. We pray with all who can find no island in their river of fear. We pray in gratitude for the God who walks toward us in our time of need. We pray with all who hide their face from God. We pray in gratitude for prophetic voices and lives. We pray with all who believe whole-heartedly after seeing and all who rely a little more on faith. We pray in gratitude for our brother Jesus for reminding us to pray quietly in the evening, beside the water, from time to time. We pray in gratitude for our brother Peter who keeps us humble. We pray with all who “witness in the Holy Spirit.” We pray with all who struggle with the uncertainty of adoption and all who know the joy of the great love adoption can bring. We pray in gratitude for birth parents, adoptive parents, and the children who create families. We pray in gratitude for the wonders of creation, especially the wind, that cooling, fierce, miraculous, still breath of the Spirit of God. We pray in gratitude for the trees of the earth and all who honor them with love. We pray in gratitude for countries that welcome refugees and hope that our nation will step up and offer hospitality soon. We pray courage for all Sanctuary and Sanctuary-Supporting communities. We pray with all who seek dignified housing and all who work to make that a reality. We pray with all who know the treasure and tension of family reunions. We pray with sisters and brothers at the Dar al Farooq Islamic Center in Bloomington and for all people who are afraid to gather in prayer. We pray with all who know hate and yet can hunger for peace. We pray with sisters and brothers in Israel, Palestine, Venezuela, and every land seeking wisdom and a peace that will endure. We pray with all who mourn, especially those whose lives are changed forever by violence. We pray in horror at the escalation of the nuclear crisis in North Korea and in hope that things can be reversed. We pray with all the members of the Spirit of St. Stephen’s community, especially those whom we do not see often enough. We pray with all in need of healing especially, Kathleen C., Mary Kay O., Diane Loeffler, Maggie’s friend, Leslie and husband John and children, John and Loretta, all who are anxious about medical procedures, and all our dear ones. We pray with all who live in chronic pain. We pray with all who are beginning new adventures in any part of their lives, especially for the new St. Joseph Workers finishing orientation and beginning work this week. We pray with soldiers and their families all over the world. We pray for peace, peace and only peace. With the sick and suffering, faithful caregivers and all who have died, we pray to our God…
Belief, suggests Barbara Brown Taylor, is not a well-fluffed nest or an impregnable castle. Belief is more like a rope bridge over a deep gorge, swinging back and forth, with plenty of air but precious little to grab onto. What we need is to believe in the bridge more than the gorge and to cross the bridge trusting that it will hold our weight.
Elijah crossed his bridge and found not only that God was waiting to welcome him on the other side, but that God had been with him all along. Paul longed to shepherd and guide his fellow Jews across the bridge. He supported them with his own faith and tried to allay their fears with his unshakeable conviction. Jesus, for his part, became the bridge for Peter. His outstretched hand caught the frightened Peter and kept him seaworthy.
As we navigate the seas of our lives, those that are both treacherous and calm, Jesus is with us all the while. He is the bridge that carries us over the gorges and valleys of our lives. He is the outstretched hand that is always ready to save us from the deep. As we move from fear to faith, we are strengthened by the assurance that there is nowhere God is not, no heart in which God does not choose to dwell, and no hand that God will not reach out to save.
~Monika Hellwig, Gladness Their Escort
Family and Children program update: My name is Gretchen Hovan, and I am so pleased to be joining the program as the coordinator. I have worked for 18 years as an educator, with young children, middle schoolers and high schoolers, and I am excited to be working with all those groups, in one job! We will be gearing up for a new year of Church School (starting Sept. 17) and we are organizing childcare, teachers for Church school and guest speakers for school too! Please be on the look-out for e-mails from me (email@example.com) about these topics and more. I am also gathering and updating contact information as I go, so if you don’t get an e-mail from me, and want to be included!, please feel free to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org or 612.412.6163.
Sunday, August 20th, 11:00 a.m. in the Fireside Room - "The Mystical, Magical Monarch" is a presentation about Kathleen Reidell's work with the Monarch Butterfly. Kathleen has worked with Monarchs for over 15 years and established the Logan Avenue Monarch Sanctuary in Richfield 5 years ago. Come and get up close and personal with this awesome and majestic creature. Weather permitting, there will be a short prayer service and release of a community grouping of newly eclosed Monarchs.
Sunday, August 27th, 11:00 a.m. - Sanctuary Education Committee will meet after church in the All Saints Room.
Thursday, Sept. 7th, 5:00 – 8:00 p.m. - 2017 SEPTEMBERFEST – Please join us on the grounds of the Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet (1890 Randolph Ave.) for food, music, games, craft beer, door prizes and tons of fun. You’ll also get to reconnect with your favorite Sisters of St. Joseph. Admission is FREE! Food and beer (21 and older) available for purchase. Event is RAIN or SHINE!