Bishop Mark’s Pentecost Sermon

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This Sunday was beautiful day at Emmanuel. Two baptisms, sixteen confirmations and receptions, and a standing-room-only congregation. The children sang with the choir in a lovely Offertory that should drop later this week, so stay tuned.

Here is the Pentecost sermon by the Bishop of Southwestern Virginia, the Rt. Rev. Mark Bourlakas, May 15th, 2016.

Liturgy of the Word from May 8th 2016

Remember that next Sunday, May 15th, is Pentecost, and our episcopal visit! Our bishop, Mark Bourlakas will be here, and there’ll be 4 baptisms and 16 confirmations and receptions! It’ll be a beautiful day for the church. Keep a look out Monday or Tuesday of next week for a podcast of the service, featuring Bishop Mark’s sermon.

Liturgy of the Word, May 1st, 2016

Hello Listeners! You have slightly abridged liturgy today as someone who shall not be named forgot to press record. Stay tuned for later on this week when we’ll drop the choir’s lovely performance of The Lord is my shepherd by Howard Goodall, if we can sufficiently clean up the recording.

Another Confirmation Blog

Here’s another update for our youth confirmation candidates. All are welcome to read it, but this applies specifically to them!

Confirmation is just three weeks away, May 15th! Once those who do choose to are confirmed, this group will be a little less academic, and more about formation and ministry. Think hard about how we should continue once you are initiated into the life and ministry of the church.

I told the candidates at our last meeting that I’d send them some resources to help ease their anxiety about the spiritual autobiography. That, and several other to-do’s and resources are below. I like lists. Go down the list.

  • Spiritual Autobiography: See the attached .doc Confirmation 2016 for a description of the task, and some questions to help you on your way. Remember, it’s an exercise, not an assignment. It won’t be graded. It will take effort. Three pages is easy if you consider three phases or events in your life, and consider where God may have moved in that place. Candidates agreed they should be due May 8th.
  • Podcast: For those of you that missed the sermon, especially if you missed it because of a card game, you need to listen to it here. It pertains to our last class.
  • Commit yourself to a ministry!: You should be involved in a ministry of church by now. If you haven’t found one, talk to me. We have lots of them. And if we don’t have one you think we ought to have, let’s get it started! (See attached .doc)
  • Poll: Please respond and let me know two things:
    1. How many in your family will be at the bishop’s dinner on May 14th
    2. How many of you will be at the morning and afternoon classes on Mother’s Day, May 8th?
    3. Candidates, Mother’s Day is May 8th!
  • Confirmation Form: Please complete the attached Confirmation Form and return it soon as you can. We need the information to pass on to the bishop and to properly record the sacrament in the church records.

Confirmation 2016

Youth Confirmation Form

Dr. James Smith’s Lecture for the King Institute for Faith and Culture

Dr. James SmithDr. James Smith lectured at Emmanuel Episcopal on April 11th, 2016. His lecture is titled “Wonder, Mystery, Longing.” This blogger won’t attempt to summarize it, except to say that Dr. Smith will challenge us to consider Christian Formation that is not just about our minds, what we think and believe, but about our hearts, what we long for. Listen towards the end for Q&A.

Fr. Joe has mentioned Dr. Smith’s book, Desiring the Kingdom, in several recent sermons. Listen back through them to see thread.

James K.A. Smith teaches philosophy at Calvin College in Grand Rapids, Michigan, where he holds the Gary and Henrietta Byker Chair in Applied Reformed Theology and Worldview. A native of Embro, Ontario, Smith has written numerous books, including Who’s Afraid of Relativism?, and How (Not) To Be Secular: Reading Charles Taylor. His work has also appeared in publications such as Christianity Today, New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and Detroit Free Press. Smith also edits Comment magazine and is a senior fellow at Cardus, a Canadian think tank dedicated to renewal of North American social architecture.

This Week in Youth Confirmation

An interesting idea for this Sunday has emerged, and I need to hear from YOU on what we should do about it!

This Sunday at 3pm is a convocation meeting at Grace House on the Mountain in Wise County. It’s about an hour’s drive, but here’s the good that can come out of it:

  • a chance to see church polity on the convocation level
  • Deacon Preston will present on his trip to Haiti
  • Evening Prayer in their beautiful outdoor chapel

I expect it’ll take two hours, and we’ll be home around 6pm. Because Kathy Dunagan and Chris Yoder are already going, I think we’ll have transportation covered. What I need to know from you is if we can do it. Could you email or text John with your preference?

A. Let’s have morning and afternoon class and then go to Convocation at Grace House.

B. Let’s have morning class, then come back and go to convocation House.

C. Let’s have morning and afternoon class, and skip Grace House.

FYI, Grace House located at 14430 Marshalls Retreat Rd, St Paul, VA 24283, and you can read more about their mission here.