Grace Episcopal Church
28 September 2017
Tomorrow’s Feast of St. Michael and All Angels (Michaelmas) makes it timely to review what scripture reveals about angels.
The Greek word for angel (‘αγγελλος/angellos) means “messenger”. Angels are supernatural created beings (not gods, Col. 1.16). They are pure spirit (Heb. 1.7, 14), lacking any physical body. As such, they can assume different forms (normally as a human being) to act as agents of God’s will, and are generally described with terms that refer to bright light, precious stones, and shining fire, i.e. as reflecting God’s glory (Dan. 10.5-6), and as dressed in white (Dan. 12.6). Angels lack gender and transcend time (Mtt. 22.30ff.) Their knowledge is superior to that of humans, but not unlimited (1 Pet. 1.12). Their strength is greater than that of humans (2 Thess. 1.7), and they speak a language of their own (1 Cor. 13.1), but can speak to humans.
The Bible says there are seven ranks of angels. These are angels, archangels, thrones, powers, dominions, cherubim and seraphim. Lucifer was the highest seraph, i.e., the highest created being, before he fell, and he can appear disguised as an angel of light (2 Cor. 11.14).
The three archangels named in Scripture include Michael (the name means “Who is like God?”), the captain of the host of heaven, as described in Revelation, Gabriel (the name means “Messenger of God”), mentioned, e.g., in the Annunciation to Mary in Luke 1, and Raphael (the name means “God has healed”), who is in The Book of Tobit. Tobit is found in the Apocrypha in Protestant bibles. This raises the issue of the fourth archangel, Uriel (“the light of God”). Uriel is not found in the Bible, but in a deuterocanonical work of the Old Testament period, The Book of Enoch, and is recognized in Judaism. His name is invoked in the version of hymn 282 (“Christ, the fair glory”—an eighth century hymn) found in The English Hymnal, but not in our hymnal. This may be because he was recognized by Pope Gregory the Great, who sermonized about the four archangels in the context of the four cardinal points of creation.
No archangel is thought to rank the others. Michael is generally thought of first because of his being described as the captain of the army fighting Satan. Note, as well, that the archangels are not the highest order, but the second lowest. We have no names for any in the other orders, other than Lucifer/Satan.
In terms of angels who interact with us, the rank is not defined. We think of them as ordinary angels, but remember that the word angel just means “messenger” (making Gabriel’s name rather redundant). Angels have free will, with those in heaven choosing to obey God (Mtt. 6.10). Angels worship Jesus Christ (Heb. 1.6).
Much outside of scripture has been written about angels. This includes the writing of saints, but also a lot of speculation that can border on the deranged. But before you dismiss the reality of angels, consider again that the word means “messenger”. For God, nothing is impossible (Mtt. 19.26; Mk. 10.27; Lk. 18.27), so why should we question His ability to appoint any messenger? Such messengers will normally be other humans given words for us, but we cannot dismiss the existence of supernatural beings without dismissing the supernatural.
Grace abounds: Please thank:
§ Mary Snyder for the Sunday coffee hours.
§ Mike Burg, Mary Snyder and Connie Stanley for the newcomers’ welcome reception.
§ Julie Davidson for janitorial help.
§ Paul Aparicio, Randie Barrows, Jim Gardner and Bryan Stenz for moving services for donated property.
Special “Thank You’ s” : A supply of Thank You note cards can be found on the table at the back of church nave. When someone in the parish does something special, take the time to write them a personal note. Also, from time to time, think about who you might want to thank for ongoing service, and let them know you have noticed!
Call for Contributions: If you have a spiritual reflection to share, or want to point your fellow worshipers toward a resource, submit your contributions to Fr. Karl (by email) by Wednesday in the week of publication.
Don’t forget “Something Extra for Grace”: Supplemental giving envelopes can be found in pews. If you want to give something extra, please use an envelope to ensure that you are credited.
Music this Week: The Seventeenth Sunday after Pentecost (Proper 21A)
Organist: R. Benjamin Dobey
Prelude Prelude on “Malabar’ (“Strengthen for service, Lord”)
Offertory no. 435 “At the Name of Jesus” King’s Weston
Communion Motet Thy perfect love John Rutter
Comm. Hymn no. 564 “He who would valiant be” St. Dunstan’s
Postlude Toccata in G Johann Speth
§ Stewardship Kick-Off Event: After the 10:15 a.m. mass coffee hour on Sunday, a presentation will be given by the Stewardship Committee in addition to a meal of Italian cuisine prepared by the Hospitality Committee.
§ White Board Selfie Project. Following Mass on Sunday, a member of the vestry will be present in St Nicholas Hall to take a photograph of each parishioner. We ask that you hold up a white board with a word or phrase you choose to express what you are passionate about at Grace Episcopal Church. This will be an ongoing project to help us discover connections and priorities amongst ourselves.
§ Parish Directory: As you may know, a picture directory is ‘in the works’ for this fall. The first step is to get the written information up to date. A print out of what we have can be found on the table in the narthex. Please check your entry. Initial the entry if it is correct, or write in any corrections necessary.
§ Coffee Hour: Thank you to all who have volunteered for coffee hour and all who have stepped in and made coffee and put out snacks. We do have a sign-up sheet in the white binder on the Narthex table. Some of the upcoming Sundays have been taken but we are still in need of more volunteers. The weeks that are open are 8:00am: 10/8,10/15. 10/22, 10/29, 11/12. 11/19, 11/26, 12/10, and 12/17. For 10:15am: 10/15, 10/29, 11/5, 12/3 and 12/10. If you can help please sign up on the sheet in the white binder on the Narthex table. Thank you so much.
§ As a community, are we really helping? Love INC is sponsoring a community event and volunteer training. The community event is entitled “The Defining Difference: Helping in Ways that Transform, based on the book Redemptive Compassion, by author, Love INC of Treasure Valley Executive Director, Lois Tupyi. This community event will take place at First Reformed Church, 927 Superior Avenue, Oostburg on Friday, October 6th 6:00 pm – 7:30 pm. Registration fee is $10 The following day, Saturday, October 7th volunteer training will be held, details of which can be found on the notice board in the narthex, and at www.loveincsheboygancountry.org For those of you who would like to attend, four free tickets are available by calling Grace Church office.
§ Walsingham Pilgrimage Music and Flowers: The Walsingham Pilgrimage is just around the corner and preparations are being made. Music will include the Gaudete Brass again this year. As you are able, please donate so we can once again offer beautiful music that has become so much a part of the pilgrimage and the flowers that add so much to the beauty of holiness. Please make your check out to Grace Church with Walsingham music or flowers or both in the memo. Reservations are required for lunch at a cost of $20 per person and will be served at noon on Saturday October 14th. Please make your reservations by using the sign-up sheet on the table in the Narthex or by calling Grace office at 452-9659.
§ Walsingham Volunteers Needed: There are many opportunities to help with hospitality for the Walsingham Pilgrimage. We will need volunteers to greet pilgrims as they arrive for both the quiet day on Friday as well as Saturday morning for the Solemn Mass and for the musical offering, healing prayer and Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament. We will need help with the set-up of St. Nicholas Hall for lunch and especially for clean-up after lunch. Please sign-up on the sheet on the Narthex table.
§ Walsingham Accommodation: We need accommodations for 12 choir members from Nashotah House (eight men and two couples) for Friday, 13 October. If you can take 1—2 choristers, please see the sign-up sheet on the table in the Narthex. You will not need to provide dinner. (A light breakfast on Saturday, 14 October will be appreciated.) You will need to provide pick-up and drop-off at the parish.
§ Our Lady of Walsingham Pilgrimage
§ Friday, October 13, 2017 - Quiet Day of Prayer and Meditation.
o 12:00pm Service for Noonday and Meditation
o 3:00pm Service of Prayer and Meditation
o 5:15pm Holy Rosary
o 6:00pm Solemn Evensong and Meditation
§ The Meditations will be led by Ms. Adowa Lewis-Wilson, Episcopal laywoman active in Boston, Massachusetts and an Oblate of the Order of Julian of Norwich.
Solemn Evensong will include the choirs of the parish and of Nashotah House Theological Seminary, under the direction of The Rev. Fr. Alexander Prior, Director of Music at the Seminary
§ Saturday, October 14, 2017 - Pilgrimage
§ 10:30 am Solemn Pontifical Mass with procession of Our Lady. Celebrant is The Right Reverend Matthew A. Gunter, Eighth Bishop of Fond du Lac.
§ The preacher is The Rev. Jeffrey Queen, Rector of St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church, in Ft. Thomas, Kentucky
§ Choral and organ music will include Dr. R. Benjamin Dobey Organist and the Gaudete Brass Quartet of Chicago.
§ 12:00 pm Harvest Lunch. The cost is $20.00.
§ Please make reservations by October 7, 2016.
§ 2:00pm Anointing with Walsingham water and Healing Prayer, musical offering, and Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament.
§ To register and for more information: (920) 452-9659,
§ Paper Drive: St. Paul’s Episcopal Church in Plymouth is having a paper drive! Please bring in ONLY newspapers (inserts included). We cannot accept magazines or anything with a binding. A semi-trailer will be in the Plymouth Furniture parking lot, 2133 Eastern Av, Plymouth, the month of September. Drop off times are Tuesdays and Thursdays 4:00 – 6:00pm and Saturdays 9:00 – 4:00pm. Pickups can be arranged by calling Jesse Cortinaz at 920-464-0303.
§ Something Extra for Grace: Envelopes are available in the pews if you are moved to give an extra gift, beyond your pledge or regular plate donation, toward the life of the church. Gifts are tax deductible if you write your name on the envelope.
§ Love INC Monthly Bulletin is now available online at:
§ Grace Notes is here: http://gracechurchgracenotes.blogspot.com/. You can sign up to receive the blog every Thursday
§ Grace Abounds: http://www.graceabounds.online Sermons, podcasts, the Bible Challenge
§ Like Grace Church on Facebook: @gracesheboygan
§ We Are on Itunes! Check out the new podcast!!!