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Bells of Peace – Sunday, November 11th at Sunset

Bell Will Ring Out at the Church of St Paul

1918-2018
Bells of Peace – A Remembrance of those who served in the First World War

An Initiative of the Royal Canadian Legion

 

Bells call us to wake, to pray, to work, to arms, to feast, and, in times of crisis, to come together.  “On November 11, 1918, the ringing of church bells erupted spontaneously across the country, as an outpouring of relief that four years of war had come to an end.” (BBC news).  The Bells of Peace initiative is designed to emulate that moment of remembrance in honour of our veterans who served in WWI.

 

There will be a gathering at the Church of St Paul in Barriere just after 4:00 pm to participate in the Bells of Peace Initiative.  Starting at 4:18 pm, which is “the going down of the sun”, until 100 peals are reached, individuals will take turns ringing the bell that is located at the front of the church.

The bell that had called the faithful of Clearwater United to worship until the congregation sold its building and the bell was moved to Barriere.

 

Statement on Attack on Tree of Life Synagogue, Pittsburgh

The United Church is profoundly saddened and outraged
at the attack on the Tree of Life Synagogue.

~ from The United Church Website, published on October 29th and modified on October 31st

Memorials outside Tree of Life Synagogue [Photo: AP Photo/Matt Rourke] ~ from United Church of Canada website

The United Church of Canada is profoundly saddened and outraged at the attack on the Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Our deep sympathy and prayers go out to the families and community of those whose loved ones died or were injured in this act of horrific act of violence. Our hearts are with all in the Jewish community who mourn, and are once again experiencing the hateful outcomes of antisemitism.The United Church of Canada denounces such acts of terror perpetrated in the name of religion as well as the rhetoric and worldviews that makes them possible. The suspect, a White nationalist accused of hate crimes, felt empowered to attack innocents and take lives because of their faith. That is not a coincidence in the global atmosphere of division and hate. We will continue to speak and act against all such acts of hatred and discrimination. We are disheartened that violence motivated by fear and hatred continues to claim the lives of so many in our world. An attack on members of one faith community is an attack on the fundamental values of respect for human rights and dignity that are basic to building just and compassionate societies.

May the families and friends of those who were killed or injured at the Tree of Life Synagogue find strength in the days ahead as they grieve the unbearable loss of their loved ones or tend to the physical and psychological wounds of those who survived.

In the days ahead, may civic and political leaders rise above calls for retribution and blame and echo the wisdom and grace being demonstrated by so many from communities near and far responding with sympathy, support and solidarity to this attack.

In Bearing Faithful Witness, a statement made in 2003, The United Church of Canada affirmed our common calling with Jews and others to align ourselves with God’s world-mending work, and encouraged all people in our church to be vigilant in resisting antisemitism and anti-Judaism in church and society. We continue to affirm those commitments and to remind our members that we need to cultivate love, understanding, and acceptance of each other, rather than giving in to fears that provide fertile ground for hate and extremism to flourish.

We offer our prayers that together we may build a world where all are treated with dignity and respect. May you be strengthened and blessed as you minister with those so deeply wounded by this attack, and may God’s healing love be with your community in the days ahead.

Oh, God, your children cry out,
and cry out, to you.

We pray for your people
of Tree of Life congregation,
for those who are waiting,
for those who are grieving,
for those who have died
because of senseless hatred
of your people, Israel;
may they find healing in your love,
and support from the community.

May any who have been part of this killing
be found quickly, and held accountable
for what they have done.

Help us, God of all creation,
to challenge the rhetoric that fans the hatred,
especially the interpretations of Christian scripture
that equate “Jewish” and “evil”;
help us, God of all love,
to fight anti-Semitism in all its forms.

We pray to you, The Name,
as disciples of Jesus,
as people filled with your love.

Amen.

—A prayer for the victims and survivors of the attack on Tree of Life Synagogue, Pittsburgh, by the Right Rev. Richard Bott. Originally posted on Facebook. Moderator Bott encourages the sharing of prayers he posts throughout his term.

Christmas Sale

November 13th – 15th from 9 am to 2 pm
at the Church of St Paul

This is your opportunity to easily look at all the Christmas items that the Church of St Paul Thrift Store has gathered over the year in the spacious surroundings of the Activity Room.  You are bound to find that decoration, trinket, or gift for which you have been searching!  As always, the prices make purchasing quite affordable.

 

Practices for Voices United Community Choir Start This Week

All Who Love to Sing in Harmony Are Welcome!

The Voices United Community Choir will start warming up their voices October 3rd as they begin the preparation for this year’s Cantata performances.  A new cantata has been chosen:  Pepper Choplin’s The Heart of Christmas.

Practices occur on Wednesdays starting at 4:30 pm and run for an hour.  They are held at St. James’ Catholic Church.  All who enjoy singing in harmony are welcome to be members.  There is a $10 membership fee that is used to help purchase the music. Part dominant CDs are available to help individuals learn the songs.  As well, there are section practices.

This Choir is sponsored by Trinity Shared Ministry.  It is ably directed by Louise Weaver.  The Cantata will be performed in mid-December.

 

We Commit to Upholding the Dignity of All People

Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada (ELCIC) National Bishop Susan C. Johnson has written a letter to the church affirming the commitment to upholding the dignity of all people and to standing with our LGBTQ2+ siblings in Christ, both inside and outside of our church.  It was posted to the ELCIC website on September 20, 2018.

A pdf of the letter can be found here. The text of the letter follows.

Dear members of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada (ELCIC),

Then [Jesus] took a little child and put it among them; and taking it in his arms, he said to them, “Whoever welcomes one such child in my name welcomes me, and whoever welcomes me welcomes not me but the one who sent me.” (Mark 9:36–37, NRSV)

Grace and peace to you.

On Sunday, we will hear how the followers of Jesus were arguing about who was the greatest. When confronted, they are silent. Jesus takes a child into his arms, and directs the disciples to welcome everyone with a sense of the holy in each person.

From the margins of society, Jesus draws people into his arms and into the centre of our communities; and asks us to reconsider our attitudes, our assumptions and our ways of welcoming. I am reminded of how tempting it is for leaders and communities to argue about who is important and who is not; to make decisions about who is in and who is out; and to magnify the significance of our own experience of normal. Even after we have committed to following Jesus, to treating people fairly and to being inclusive, there is much work to be done to turn our commitments into true and meaningful action.

In 2011, the ELCIC National Convention adopted a Social Statement on Human Sexuality, which calls us as a church to the following commitments.

We commit to upholding the dignity of all people. We recognize the image of Christ in every person and serve that person as Christ himself. In meeting diverse people, we begin with a core sense of respect for the value of each person as a unique child of God. We commit to following Jesus by welcoming everyone.

We commit to engaging in practices that more fully enable all people, regardless of their sexual orientation, to live as members of the body of Christ and as co-workers in ministry, and to help nurture disciples in the image of God. We recognize we are affected by the biases of our predominantly heterosexual culture. We commit to keep on learning.

We commit to engaging the diverse faces of the world in which we live. We recognize that meeting diverse peoples and forming a truly inclusive community is a journey of discovery that will include moments of discomfort and anxiety. We commit to using these moments to help us grow as disciples.

The ELCIC finds itself in an increasingly pluralistic context which invites us to think anew about how we preach and live the gospel. As we continue to learn and grow as God’s people, we gain new understanding of our world. When we name our complex history, it can assist us in repairing those broken relationships and moving us towards being a more inclusive church. Language becomes an important vehicle to proclaim God’s justice and well-being and reflects hospitality and welcome to all.

In March 2018, the ELCIC’s National Church Council approved new Inclusive Language Guidelines. Women and men, transgender and non-binary people, members of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, queer, two-spirit, asexual, and heterosexual communities deserve to have their individual identities, titles, and pronouns respected and upheld. While it isn’t required to know all of these terms, it is critical that we have a general understanding of the range of identities we have been gifted with by God and reflect that in our use of language with one another.

Just as the church wonders how to uphold dignity, so do our communities and our societies.
Recently, in different parts of Canada, there have been conversations regarding what curriculum will be used in schools as appropriate sexual education. Concerns are being raised about possible future use of the notwithstanding clause that may affect our LGBTQ2+ siblings. In the face of these conversations and concerns, how do we help each other to deepen respect for each other?

I am conscious that persons whose sexual orientation, gender expression or gender identity means living as a minority in a predominantly heterosexual and gender-binary culture, the risk of painful, harmful and/or dangerous experiences remains far too high. The ELCIC does not support conversion therapy to change a person’s sexual orientation; or any other form of treatment that is hostile to a person’s identity. Rather, we sense a deep need for safe opportunities to listen to diverse experiences, to learn from each other, and to honour people’s God-given identity. We are called to form families, communities and societies where all are welcome and where all make a meaningful contribution. We are committed to standing with our LGBTQ2+ siblings in Christ, both inside and outside of our church.

This church lives by faith and grace. Living faithfully means trusting in God’s grace boldly, and taking risks. This church is yearning to see how God will be active in our future, and how God will use us as agents of reconciliation in our broken world.

Yours in Christ,

The Rev. Susan C. Johnson
National Bishop, Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada

 

The Rev. Dr. Richard Bott Elected 43rd Moderator

To Be Installed on Friday, July 27th

The Rev. Dr. Richard Bott was elected 43rd Moderator at General Council 43 of the United Church of Canada held in Oshawa, Ontario. Credit: United Church of Canada

~ The following was posted on the United Church of Canada website on July 26, 2018.

The United Church of Canada has elected the Rev. Richard Bott, 49, from Vancouver as its 43rd Moderator from a field of 10 nominees. Meeting in Oshawa, Ontario, over 300 commissioners (delegates) from across the country have gathered this week to decide on a wide range of church business that includes the election of the Moderator, who will be the church’s spiritual leader for the next three years.

The Rev. Bott recently served as the minister for Pacific Spirit United Church in Vancouver and was in the process of moving to a new congregation. But that changes now that he has been elected Moderator, which is a full-time position in the church.

Born in Marathon, ON, the Rev. Bott has served churches in Ontario and British Columbia. He is well known for his skills as a leader, writer, and educator. An early adopter of social media, he manages a Facebook group of over 700 United Church ministers.

Looking ahead to the next three years, the Rev. Bott says, “I am excited about the possibilities that are in front of the church and hopeful that we are going to live into them together.”

Unlike leaders in other denominations, the Moderator does not set policy or doctrine. Those decisions are arrived at by committees of clergy and lay people in the church who bring them to one of the triennial General Council meetings, where they are voted on by people chosen from all regions of Canada and from Bermuda. The Moderator-elect will be installed as the new Moderator on Friday, July 27, at the closing worship service of the meeting.

Following his election, the Rev. Dr. Richard Bott answered questions about his vision as he becomes the next Moderator of the United Church.  See http://ow.ly/Qg6N30l9bEu.

Moderator Richard Bott preached on the feeding of the five thousand from John 6: 1-14 at the closing worship service of General Council 43.  An article on the closing worship can be found on the GC 43 website.  The closing worship can be found on the recorded GC43 livestream.  It begins with the passing of the final motion of the meeting.

United Church General Council 43 Has Voted To Enact All Remits

Photo: United Church/Flickr/Creative Commons

“This is a really significant moment in the life of our church,” said United Church of Canada Moderator Jordan Cantwell before commissioners at General Council voted to enact all of the remits regarding changing the church structure.

An overwhelming 91 per cent voted in favour of enacting the three-council model. After the court decided to enact all of the remits, the moderator prayed:

“Holy, disturbing, grace-filled God, this has been such a long, sometimes difficult, often joyful and exciting journey for us as we wrestle with the changes going on around us and within us as a church and how to respond faithfully.

We thank you that even in the midst of our fears and anxieties and uncertainties, that you have accompanied us as you always do, that you have granted us courage to act even in the presence of our fears.

To respond to faith and hope even when we are uncertain what the future will entail. That you have taught us how to walk together in courageous, hope-filled footsteps.

May we have the strength and vision to live into these changes, to live into this new structure, joyfully, with creativity, knowing that we are always and forever a work in progress.

We give you thanks that you are always and forever working with and through and around us. We pray in Jesus’ name. Amen.”

~ from the UC Observer Magazine facebook page

For more information about General Council 43, go to its website.

Bishop Will Lead Worship

Our Parish Welcomes Bishop Barbara Andrews
on Sunday, July 15th

While our pastor/priest/minister, the Rev. Brian Krushel, is on sabbatical and vacation this summer, several people from all three of our denominations has led or will be leading worship.  The Right Reverend Barbara Andrews, the Suffragan Bishop of the Territory of the People, is our Anglican Bishop.  She will lead worship and preside at the Eucharist in both Trinity Shared Ministry (9 am) and the Church of Saint Paul (11 am) on Sunday, July 15th.

Although Bishop Barbara has a very formal role within the Anglican Church of Canada, she has a delightful sense of humour and a warm presence.  To learn a bit more about her, a biography will be found on the Territory of the People website.

For those in the North Thompson with an Anglican background, this service would certainly be an opportunity for you to experience your Anglican roots since one of the Anglican orders of service will be used.  Everyone is always welcome to attend our services.

During the rest of the summer, two people will be leading worship.  The Rev. John Boyd, an ordained minister of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada, visits us from Kamloops on July 29, August 5, and August 26.  Linda Ervin, a commissioned diaconal minister in the United Church of Canada living in Penticton, will lead worship on July 22, August 12, and August 19.  As is our practice, communion will be served each week in the Church of St Paul and on the first and third Sundays in Trinity Shared Ministry.