To receive and share God’s accepting Grace, challenging Wisdom and transforming Love

STEDY, January 9, 2019

Isaiah 43b:1-2
Do not fear, for I have redeemed you;
I have called you by name, you are mine.
When you pass through the waters, I will be with you;
and through the rivers, they shall not overwhelm you;
when you walk through fire you shall not be burned,
and the flame shall not consume you.

Luke 3:21-22
Now when all the people were baptized, and when Jesus also had been baptized and was praying, the heaven was opened, and the Holy Spirit descended upon him in bodily form like a dove. And a voice came from heaven, “You are my Son, the Beloved; with you I am well pleased.”
You may have noticed in the center of the aisle in the sanctuary there is a font that, on Sunday mornings, holds water and flowers. You will see similar fonts in Catholic churches but not usually in any other Christian church. The water in this font is special as it has been blessed and is intended for those who wish to “take holy water”. This means dipping one’s fingers into the water and placing a drop of it on the forehead while making the sign of the cross on the forehead, chest, and shoulders. This can symbolize purification, blessing, dedication, and renewal of the baptismal covenant. Sometimes, in addition to the font, you may see the priest use an aspergillum (a.k.a. the tube with holes) or a small branch to sprinkle holy water onto the congregation, the altar or clergy. Intended to purify, this is especially appropriate during the Renewal of Baptismal Vows at the Easter Vigil and at other times of renewal of the baptismal covenant.
I haven’t checked with Mother Judy, but it is possible we will see the aspergillum this Sunday as we celebrate the Baptism of Jesus. As always there will be the font at the church entrance, ready for all who wish to be purified. This is also the perfect Sunday to remember or perhaps celebrate your own baptism. In addition to remembering that we have been cleansed and made new, this is also a time when we can think for a moment about water and how, like God, it can appear in million different forms yet never changes.Water molecules are very stable which means they don’t get destroyed but they simply change. This means there are water molecules here that were around when Jesus was alive and may have even been what washed him when he was baptized. There may be molecules in our font that were in the Red Sea when it parted, in the cloud that led the Israelites through the desert or what Isaiah looked at as he wrote. The water that cleanses us connects us to our past, to Jesus and the salvific miracles of God. There will be times when, like water, God will pour down on us and other times when God seem sparse and we fear we may have emptied our source. God is always there, different and yet unchanged. Offering clean beginnings, relief and new life.

~ Upcoming Events ~

January 13
Team 2 Acolyting

Family Worship
10 am | Chapel

Sunday School
10:30 am | Sunday School Classrooms

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January 20
Team 3 Acolyting

Family Worship
10 am | Chapel

Sunday School
10:30 am | Sunday School Classrooms

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January 27
Team 4 Acolyting

Family Worship
10 am | Chapel

Sunday School
10:30 am | Sunday School Classrooms

Annual Meeting
following worship in the Sanctuary

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February 3
Team 1 Acolyting

Family Worship
10 am | Chapel

Sunday School
10:30 am | Sunday School Classrooms

Youth Group
5 pm – 7 pm

Please feel free to contact Heather if you have questions.