Grace Episcopal Church
28 March 2013
Today is Maundy Thursday. The name derives from the Middle English word for commandment, derived from the Latin mandatum, and recalling Jesus’ words at John 13.34, “A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another; even as I have loved you, that you also love one another.”
How do we love one another as Jesus has loved us? We begin by recognizing that love is not an emotion—it is a state of being; it is something we do. Jesus gave His disciples His new commandment in the context of gathering with them at the Last Supper, with His example of serving (in washing their feet), in the same setting that He instituted the Holy Eucharist. In other words, love involves identification with God, who is love (1 Jn. 4.8). “By this all will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another” (John 13.35).
How do we love one another? Another way to ask this is, How do we serve one another? We do this by keeping God first, others second, and ourselves last. We do this in recognizing and living that in a little quirk of grammar (both in English and in the Greek of the New Testament) we get a hint of a reality behind description. This hint is that adjectives such as “good” or “holy,” “faithful” or even “righteous” (let alone “saved”) are used in Scripture in ways that are generally not adjectival. What does this mean? If an adjective is used as such it modifies a noun. Saying that “The prayer book is red” describes the book. But an adjective can also be used in a substantive way, as a predicate which implies the verb “to be,” and this is how the words listed above are generally used in Scripture. For example, when Matthew says that Joseph is a “righteous” man (Mtt. 1.19) he is not describing Joseph but saying who and what Joseph is.
To the extent that we can by the Holy Spirit ever apply the words “faithful” or “loving” to ourselves and to the Church, we must embody these as realities of being. It is only then that the world might use these same words to describe us. The action remains God’s, which is why we can refer to the Church as “holy” (“set aside” for God) even when this fails to describe reality in action. We can make such a reference, for it is God who sets aside those whom He calls (John 15.16). But we need to be—to embody—this reality, so that the world can see and experience this reality.
In the second century St. Tertullian wrote that a hostile world looked upon the Christian faithful and said “See, how they love one another” (Apology 39.7). He could write this because the Christians embodied God’s love. May the words “faithful” and “loving” apply always because we live into the state of being to which these words apply. When this reality is lived, the words will become descriptors as well, and our faithfulness to Jesus’ new commandment will be lived to be seen by all.
Grace Abounds: Please thank Mary Snyder for hosting the Friday night lenten supper. Please thank Katy Prange and Bobbi Kraft for clearing snow prior to our gathering this past Sunday morining. Please thank Bob and Ann Hanlon, and Terry and Mary Kohler, for preparing coffee hours this past Sunday (and supplying hot cross buns!) Helpers at coffe hour included Bill and Deb Gagin, John and Jennifer Keller, Leslie Kohler, and Bob and Barb MacEwen.
Please take the opportunity to notify the office of any member or friend of the parish to whom we owe thanks, in order that we can publicize this in the weekly newsletter.
Holy Drama: Parents of children: This, of all times, is when children need to participate in worship. Let them welcome the new fire at the Easter vigil. Everybody: Bring a (small) bell you can ring, that when the lights come up and the Gloria in excelsis Deo! is first sung, you may ring your bell to celebrate Jesus’ victory over death, and to chase away the Devil!
Bring your cell phone! Believe it or not, we want you to use your cell phone in church (set on silent!) Bring your cell phone, and at a service like Maundy Thursday, the Great Vigil of Easter, or on Easter morning (not on Good Friday) take out your cell phone and (discretely) take a photograph of some aspect to of the service that particularly catches your attention. Then, if you use social media like Facebook, post the photo on your page, with a link to the Facebook page and website of the parish. Let’s see how much we can broadcast to those with whom we are connected how we connect with God, that we can lay more of a base to invite them to connect with God with us.
Be discrete. Don’t post a picture of someone without their permission.
Newsletter delay: With Easter falling on 31 March, our April edition of The Angelus will not issue until 5 April. For April calendare and event details, please consult the parish website during any delay.
Episcopal Youth Community: Grace and Peace to you! I have spent this past week deep in the Stations of the Cross, while preparing for a group trip to St. Thomas to experience the Stations through various media, and while writing a version of the Stations for our Sunday School class. Both, in my mind, were successful, and I don't think I'll ever be quite the same after experiencing these two renditions.
I have learned a lot about the people I work with in Sunday School, and the kids in our class. An—by the way—brokenness is not something that can only happen to you when you've "grown up a bit". There are some emotional injuries in our kids, from their peers, and others, yet they live lives of wholeness.
I have learned a lot about myself through writing a children's version, and through a series of Stations where the medium of cinema helps us to make a connection to the reality of Jesus, and His sacrifice. Movie clips, which are so normal to our lives, applied to the story and sacrifice of Jesus, stretch our imagination and help us to experience emotionally the story of Christ. Through both exercises I began to understand the Stations in a new way.
There are a lot of assumptions we make, and most of the ones I make are to lessen the pain, lessen the endurance, lessen the torture of the cross. It is really scary to face the reality of how much our Lord needed to endure. But He did, and He did it with a human body.
This, to me, adds greater weight to John 14:12 where Jesus says "Very truly, I tell you, the one who believes in me will also do the works that I do and, in fact, will do greater works than these, because I am going to the Father." If Jesus can endure the cross, what are we holding ourselves back from because we say "I can't..."? ―Nick
Music this week:
Maundy Thursday at 6 p.m.
Prelude Meditation on ‘Ubi Caritas’ Visser
Prelude on Adoro te devote Willan
Entrance Hymn “Zion, praise thy Savior singing” (Lauda Sion)
Gloria Missa ‘Alme Pater’ Plainsong
At the Maundy Ubi caritas Duruflé
God is love, and where love is Proulx
Offertory Hymn 315 “Thou, who at thy first Eucharist didst pray” Song 1
Communion Anthem Ave verum Corpus Plainsong
Comm. Hymn 314 “Humbly I adore thee” Adoro devote
At the Procession to the Altar of Repose:
Hymn 329 “Now, my tongue the mystery telling” Pange lingua
Good Friday at 1 p.m.
Sung Passion Gospel
At the Veneration of the Cross:
Adoramus te, Christe Mozart
God so loved the world Stainer
Organ: O sacred head, now wounded Bach
Procession from the Altar of Repose:
Hymn 166 “Sing, my tongue, the glorious battle” Pange lingua
Easter Vigil at 7:30 p.m., with the Gaudete Brass Quintet
Gloria in excelsis Deo William Mathias
Offertory Anthem Christus Vincit Noyon
Communion Motet Most glorious Lord of life Harris
Comm. Hymn 305 “Come, risen Lord” Rosedale
Closing Hymn 208 “The strife is o’er” Victory
Postlude Toccata (Symphonie V) Widor
Easter Day at 10:15, with String Quartet
Prelude Three Church Sonatas Mozart
Opening Hymn 207 “Jesus Christ is risen today” Easter Hymn
Mass setting Missa in C (‘Organ-solo’ Mass) Mozart
Offertory Hymn 175 “Hail thee, festival day” Salve festa dies
Communion Motet Jesus, Sun of Life Handel
Comm. Hymn 174 “At the Lamb’s high feast we sing” Salzburg
Closing Hymn 210 “The day of resurrection” Ellacombe
Postlude Prelude & Fugue in D Major Bach
Maundy Thursday Foot Washing: Everyone will have the opportunity to have their feet washed and to wash someone else’s feet following the example of Jesus washing his disciple’s feet. Please wear socks and shoes that are easily removed.
Jerusalem Offering: Every year since 1922 the church has taken a collection for the Church in the Middle East during Holy Week. Our loose plate offering on Maundy Thursday will go to support the church efforts in Jerusalem and throughout the Middle East. Please be generous as you are able.
Vigil before the Altar of Repose: Please sign up to watch and pray for an hour at the Altar of Repose beginning immediately following the Maundy Thursday Mass March 28 and concluding Friday, March 29 as the Good Friday Liturgy begins. There is a sign-up sheet on the table in the Narthex, more than one person can sign up for any given hour.
Sacrament of Reconciliation: Lent is a time of self-examination preparing for the death and resurrection of our Lord. The Sacrament of Reconciliation will be offered by appointment. Please contact Fr. Schaffenburg to set up an appointment to make your confession.
The Holy Noise: It is an ancient custom that parishioners bring bells from home to make the Holy Noise during the singing of the Gloria in exclesis at the Easter Vigil and to symbolize the waking of the dead in Christ because of His resurrection, as well as the proclamation to the entire world that Christ is risen from the dead.
Easter Gala Reception: We will continue our Easter celebration with a Gala Reception after the 10:15 a.m. Mass on Sunday, March 31. Please sign up to bring sweets or savories and to help clean up afterwards. There is a sign-up sheet on the table in the Narthex.
Christian Formation: there will be no Christian Formation for adults or children on Easter, March 31st. Christian formation for children will begin on April 7th for all ages.
Adult Christian Formation: During Eastertide we will take a break from formal study, and focus more on discussion. On Sunday mornings at 9, join us for coffee and a group discussion of the scriptural lessons for that Sunday. We will use the Bible study format (posted on the parish website during the prior week) which outlines the discussion points for each lesson. Come prepared to share in fellowship. Bring your questions. You can read the lessons in advance by following the Bible Study links on the parish website, which will give you the study outlines and a link to the full text of the lessons.
Bishop Search: For all information concerning the search for the eighth Bishop of Fond du Lac please go to bishopsearch.info.