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1502, 2020

A Discipleship Discussion

February 15th, 2020|Categories: Blog, Weekly Reflections|Tags: |0 Comments

Written by Rick Brown At Bishop Andrew’s urging and with our clergy and vestry leadership’s blessing, a new discussion is beginning at All Saints’ about how we do “discipleship”. Jesus tells us at the end of Matthew’s gospel to “Go and make disciples of all nations” and to “teach them to obey everything I have commanded you”. He makes it sound so easy! Just go and do it. He does promise to be with us “always, to the very end of the age”, which is reassuring, but that still leaves things somewhat undefined, don’t you think? These examples from Scripture show us how we might follow Jesus’ command to make disciples. In Acts 2:42 we read that the early believers lived out a way of discipleship as “They devoted themselves to the apostle’s teaching and to fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer”. In Hebrews 10:23-25 we hear the call to hold fast to the hope we profess so that “we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, not giving up meeting together…but encouraging one another—and all the more as you see the day approaching.” Both of these passages show how important it is for [...]

702, 2020

A Unified Body

February 7th, 2020|Categories: Blog, Weekly Reflections|Tags: |0 Comments

We, though many, are one body in Christ, and individually members one of another. Romans 12:5 St. Paul gives us the wonderful image of the Church being the body of Christ in the world. Christ is the head, but we are all the other parts of the body, each having an important function in the life of the body. All of our gifts function best when we understand ourselves as a unified body, all of us working together toward the same purpose in Christ. As Christ’s body in the world, we serve not only the members of the body, but we are sent out to give ourselves for the sake of the world. Jesus sends us out into the world as his messengers of the good news. This past fall Bp. Andrew helped us organize our ministries into task forces that are outwardly focused towards Amesbury and our surrounding communities. These seven ministry areas are: Discipleship, Outreach, Welcome, Music, Audio/Visual, Pastoral Care, and Children. Over the next two months in the Friday email, one of each of the task force chairpersons will be telling us about their particular ministry focus. We will be learning about each task force and how [...]

3101, 2020

One in Body and Spirit, One Eternally

January 31st, 2020|Categories: Blog, Weekly Reflections|Tags: , |0 Comments

We, though many, are one body in Christ, and individually members one of another. Romans 12:5 This past fall Bp. Andrew helped All Saints form task forces in six ministry areas, chaired by these leaders: Welcome—Janet McBrien Outreach—Tom and Patty Champion Audio/Visual—Bruce McBrien Pastoral Care—Dcn. Martha Learned Children's Ministry—Cindy Carter Discipleship—Rick Brown Each of these ministry areas seeks to reach out to Amesbury and our surrounding communities as well as serve the church body. In order to help these ministries to function well, we are inviting each of you to complete the attached very simple questionnaire so that we can gather information about which ministries you are involved in. You can also tell us if you would like to step back from a ministry or join a new one. There is also a link to a spiritual gifts assessment, to help you identify your spiritual gifts. Please help us by taking a few minutes to answer the questionnaire here. St. Paul gave us the wonderful image of the Church being the body of Christ in the world. Christ is the head, but we are all the other parts of the body. When each member uses their gifts for the sake [...]

2401, 2020

Farewell to the Blomquists

January 24th, 2020|Categories: Blog, Mission Moments, Weekly Reflections|0 Comments

When I first came to All Saints in the fall of 2018, I was grateful to God for helping me find a good church. However, All Saints had not yet become my church home. I wanted to serve and use my gifts in some way, but I did not know how. When I came back to All Saints after Christmas break, Father Nathan introduced me to Father Bill over text so that I could potentially be involved with the musical worship ministry. I soon met Bill in person, and we instantly hit it off. We talked about music and worship and how Jesus changed our lives for the better. After that, I quickly became involved with the worship team, and I soon met Mother Cinnamon. I was really glad to be given the opportunity to serve and to give back to my church in some small way.  In the spring of 2019 on the Sunday after my birthday, Cinnamon came up to me and asked if she could pray a “birthday blessing” over me. Bill joined her, and they laid their hands upon me and prayed for me. During that spring semester, I was going through a particularly dry spiritual [...]

1701, 2020

In Times of Change

January 17th, 2020|Categories: Blog, Weekly Reflections|Tags: , |0 Comments

This Sunday we will celebrate Cheryl for her faithful service to All Saints' as our Connections Coordinator these past few years. I hope to see y’all there as we give thanks for all her contributions. It's yet another transition that we are going through together in this season. And even though the uncertainty has been trying for each of us in different ways, I found myself filled with excitement as I was praying for us last week. I'm excited for the new thing God is working out that we cannot yet see. In some ways, I'm reminded of James' words: "Count it all joy, my brothers and sisters, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing." We can face our uncertainty and the trials it brings with a certain confidence that we remain in God's caring hands, and those hands are shaping us for that new thing we cannot yet see. I need to remind myself of this too, though! As I graduate from seminary this spring, I don't know what lies ahead and [...]

1001, 2020

Step into Christ’s Marvelous Light.

January 10th, 2020|Categories: Blog, Weekly Reflections|Tags: , |0 Comments

“God has brought you out of darkness into his marvelous light!”--1 Peter 2:9 The Christmas season is past, the festivities are over, the twinkle lights and decorations are put away, and forlorn Christmas trees line the streets, waiting to be picked up for burning. The long cold winter stretches ahead. As the old Christmas carol says, we are in the cold, dark and “bleak midwinter.” Epiphany season, however, reminds us that God has been revealed to us as Light—Christ is the Light of the world, the light that penetrates and dispels all darkness. Even in the midst of the dark winter, Christ is showering us with his love and light. We are never alone or distant from God. He is always in the midst of all that we experience. Many centuries ago St. Augustine said that God is closer to us than our next breath. And St. Paul said, “In Him we live and move and have our being.” Psalm 139 says, “Where can I go from your Spirit? Where can I flee from your presence? If I go up to the heavens, you are there; if I make my bed in the depths, you are there. If I rise [...]