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Meditations

  • Monday July 10, 2017

    Recently I came across this poem/prayer by Timothy Dudley-Smith, set as a hymn in Wonder, Love, and Praise. I find myself coming back to it repeatedly throughout the day, and thought you might appreciate it as well. - Paul Peterson, Choir   So the day dawn for me, so the day break, Christ watching over me, Christ as I wake. Be the day shine for me, be the day bright, Christ my companion be, Christ be my light. Be the day dark to me, be the day drear, Christ shall my comfort be, Christ be my cheer. Be the day swift for me, be the day long, Christ my contentment be, Christ be my song. So the day close for me, so the night fall, Christ watching over me, Christ be my all.
    Paul Peterson
  • Sunday July 9, 2017

    "Come to me, all you that are weary and are carrying heavy burdens, and I will give you rest." Matthew 11:28   What a great message for a Sunday in the peak of summer! Come on in this morning at 9am and take a break with us.   See you in church! Celeste+
    Celeste+
  • Saturday July 8, 2017

    From: The River Blog, published June 14, 2017 http://kairosearth.org/category/river-blog/   We portaged around the Gilman Dam on Saturday, June 10th. Dams like this one were added along the Connecticut River to control annual flooding and to protect riverside towns. Despite the human benefit, damming rivers does not come without great consequences for the river, for its inhabitants, and for its neighbors. The Moore and Comerford Reservoirs cover what was 15-mile falls, the longest consecutive stretch of falls on the east coast, and a sacred site to the Abenaki. As we paddled near the shore, we could see traces of what the sunlight once touched - huge rocks, built stone walls - all of which are now submerged beneath these still waters which no longer tumble and froth.   May we remember to temper our appetite for control, efficiency, and power, especially when such drives permit us to forget that the earth is alive and thriving, not an inanimate object for our desired use and purpose.
  • Friday July 7, 2017

    Well now, this is bizarre! What do St. Matthew's Church and Harper's Bazaar magazine have in common? We are both celebrating our 150th anniversaries in 2017! But wait - we have more in common than that.   According to Bazaar's editor, Glenda Bailey, "Bazaar has shown women how to take what they glean from the magazine and make it work in their own unique lives." I posit that we at St. Matthew's take what we glean from Sunday readings, homilies, fellowship and more and we leave each Sunday renewed and ready to do God's work in and through our own unique lives.   Glenda continues "As we look back we also look ahead, and we're excited to continue - and add to - Bazaar's legacy." As we at St. Matthew's look back we also look ahead, and we're excited to continue - and to add to - St. Matthew's legacy.   Glenda Bailey ends with "Here's to 150 more years." Yes, indeed, we at St. Matt's echo those sentiments, too.   Who'd have thought we'd have so much in common with a fashion magazine - bizarre!   Joan Alayne Stevens, Parishioner
    Joan Alayne Stevens
  • Thursday July 6, 2017

    Psalm 107:29 He stilled the storm to a whisper and quieted the waves of the sea. While kayaking recently, the wind came up and the water became very choppy, making it harder to paddle.  The shore seemed so far away, and I became anxious until remembering that in the worst of life's storms, God brings peace.  My heart knows this, even when my head doesn't remember.  As I became calm, the water seemed calmer, too! Rosemarie Fry, Parishoner
    Rosemarie Fry
  • Wednesday July 5, 2017

    Mercy:   "When we see another person's soiled hands or soiled soul, the invitation is about mercy, not purity. It's to judge as Jesus judged: a judgment of love" - Br. Curtis Almquist, Society of Saint John the Evangelist   It is not easy to always make a judgment of love. I try every day but catch myself falling short every day. I guess catching myself is a good thing.   My cats are better at doling out judgments of love than I though even they sometimes give me a swat in the middle of a scratch to the chin. But they are back reaching for another scratch immediately as they forgive and forget.   God in your mercy, help me to try harder to extend a hand to give a scratch under the chin so the recipient will receive it as a judgment of love.   Joan Alayne Stevens, Parishioner
    Joan Alayne Stevens
  • Tuesday July 4, 2017

      Here is an Independence Day message from Byron Rushing, Vice President of the House of Deputies of the Episcopal Church and member of the Massachusetts House of Representatives:   Let me take this opportunity to remind Episcopalians in the United States that many of us do not consider the words--"the founders of this country won liberty for themselves and for us"--in the Independence Day collect to be accurate. Look around your congregations and reflect if all the ancestors of the "us" got their liberty then.   Listen to the words of Collect (BCP, p.242) for Independence Day July 4th   Lord God Almighty, in whose Name the founders of this country won liberty for themselves and for us, and lit the torch of freedom for nations then unborn: Grant that we and all the people of this land may have grace to maintain our liberties in righteousness and peace; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.   This phrase is only possible because slavery was forgotten-or the "us" was not meant to include me.   A better and approved BCP collect for the 4th is "For the Nation" (p.258 or 207):   Lord God Almighty, you have made all the peoples of the earth for your glory, to serve you in freedom and in peace: Give to the people of our country a zeal for justice and the strength of forbearance, that we may use our liberty in accordance with your gracious will; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen
  • Monday July 3, 2017

    "The LORD appeared to Abraham by the oaks of Mamre, as he sat at the entrance of his tent in the heat of the day. He looked up and saw three men standing near him." Genesis 18: 1 - 2a   I have always been puzzled by the Holy Trinity. I like to think of God as a single, fundamental, monolithic entity. But yet we have this concept of Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. When we celebrated it several Sundays ago, Celeste shared with us a new way of looking at it: as three faces of God. That was helpful.   Despite my puzzlement, a triune God seemed to me a uniquely Christian thing, so I was really struck when I heard the Old Testament lesson this past Sunday. When the Lord appeared to Abraham, he did it in the form of three people. Again, God is one, but God is three. However, this time it is in the book of Genesis, way before the Christian concept of the Trinity. Wow, where did that come from? That's just the kind of surprise I enjoy on a quiet Sunday morning at St. Matthew's.   What did you find surprising in church this week?   Benge Ambrogi
    Benge Ambrogi
  • Sunday July 2, 2017

    from Thursday's Parish News:   LOVE bade me welcome; yet my soul drew back,      Guilty of dust and sin. But quick-eyed Love, observing me grow slack      From my first entrance in, Drew nearer to me, sweetly questioning      If I lack'd anything.   This verse, from the poem, Love, by George Herbert begins an exploration of Holy Communion as a form of hospitality.  That's certainly how we see it at St. Matthew's church.  Our Sunday bulletin makes it clear that all are welcome at the Lord's table-not just church members.  But do we welcome all visitors from their "first entrance in"?  Are we observant when those who are new to our church "grow slack" because of unfamiliarity with our customs?  Join us today to examine our call to hospitality.           "See you in church,"                    Celeste+
    Celeste+

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