The darkness shall not overcome it.

“What a gift to read a hopeful, confident passage like Isaiah 35, and to feel seen in the simple acknowledgement of those who are “cowardly.” Those who have weak hands and shaking knees are not judged or chastised for their lack of faith. Or for their lack of hope. The community around them, the prophet himself, is told to encourage those who are hope-less or even faith-less. Reassure them. Have faith on their behalf. Remind them of God’s saving power.”

WIT

Yesterday was Gaudete Sunday, traditionally a joyful interruption in the midst of an advent season otherwise characterized by somber waiting and postures of penance. Being at a non-lectionary church, we read and our pastor preached on John 1.

The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not overcome it.

Our pastor spoke of getting lost at a campground once, with utter darkness surrounding them in an unfamiliar place, and then seeing one small light in the distance, the flashlight of fellow campers. We know from multiple human experiences that the darkness cannot overshadow the smallest of lights: the brilliance of the first star peeking out as daytime turns to night; the comfort of a candle when our otherwise predictable lives are interrupted by a power outage; the difference even a small flashlight makes as we navigate dark paths. Indeed, the deeper the darkness, the more brightly such small…

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Artemisia Bowden, 1969 (Aug 18)

Artemisia Bowden—an invitation to you and me to trust in the grace of God to become the faithful witnesses of God’s love and mercy…

Wind in the Pines

Artemisia Bowden Artemisia Bowden

The Rt. Rev. James Steptoe Johnston, Bishop of the Missionary District of Western Texas (1888–1916), desired to provide education and skill development for newly emancipated blacks in the mission field. Bishop Johnston traveled to Raleigh, North Carolina, in search of a young, black, female teacher. In 1902, Ms. Artemisia Bowden courageously accepted Bishop Johnston’s invitation and assumed leadership of the St. Philip’s Vocational Day School for Colored Children in San Antonio, Texas.

She began with less than ten students. After leading the school for 52 years, a small day school was transformed into a fully accredited junior college offering over 100 degree and certificate programs. In 2016, St. Philip’s College has an enrollment of over 11,000 students. St. Philip’s College carries the dual designation of being a Historically Black College and a Hispanic Serving Institution Bowden’s work, which began more than 110 years ago, continues to be an…

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Collect: Feast of Saint Mark

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Almighty God, by the hand of Mark the evangelist you have given to your Church the Gospel of Jesus Christ the Son of God: We thank you for this witness, and pray that we may be firmly grounded in its truth; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

The Book of Common Prayer, 240

As God answers our prayer and we become “firmly grounded” in the truth of the Good News as told by Mark, what then? How are we to witness to the truth in our day, in our place, with our own God-given gifts? Walk with the question through the day. The opportunities for your own witness to the truth will be there (even if they are not of biblical proportions). ~Fr. Dan

Be well. Do good. Pay attention. Keep learning.

Image: OldBooks.org

Collect: Conversion of Saint Paul the Apostle (Jan 25)

I just posted this to “Wind in the Pines,” our companion blog on WordPress. May we always be ready, like Saul/Paul, to listen for God … ~Fr. Dan

Wind in the Pines

Today, because many of you will not have access to this material, I quote in its entirety the description of this commemoration in Lesser Feasts and Fasts 2006. ~Fr. Dan

Begin quote

Paul, or Saul as he was known until he became a Christian, was a Roman citizen, born at Tarsus, in present-day Turkey. He was brought up as an orthodox Jew, studying in Jerusalem for a time under Gamaliel, the most famous rabbi of the day. Describing himself, he said, “I am an Israelite, a descendant of Abraham, a member of the tribe of Benjamin” (Romans 11:1).

A few years after the death of Jesus, Saul came in contact with the new Christian movement, and became one of the most fanatical of those who were determined to stamp out this “dangerous heresy.” Saul witnessed the stoning of Stephen. He was on the way to Damascus to lead in…

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First Woman Priest in the Anglican Communion: Li Tim-Oi’s Story

We first posted this on 24 Jan. 2012. We share it once again and invite you to view the Interactive timeline of the history of women’s ordination posted by the Episcopal Church (Digital Network) ~Fr. Dan

Hear what the Spirit is saying


Li Tim-Oi, her mother, Bishop Mok, her father, Archdeacon Lee Kow Yan after her ordination as Deacon by Bishop R 0 Hall at St John’s Cathedral HK. Ascension Day 22 May 1941
Photo from Li Tim-Oi Story

 

Today (Jan, 24) the Episcopal Church commemorates Florence Li Tim-Oi: the first woman priest in the Anglican Communion (ordained on 25 January 1944). I encourage you to read her story:

At her birth in Hong Kong on 5 May 1907 Li Tim-Oi’s father called her “Much Beloved” because he valued her as a daughter even if others prefered sons.

Read the rest of her story: Litim-Oi | Li Tim-Oi’s Story.

The Li Tim-Oi Foundation was established in 1994. The Foundation funds It takes ONE woman: “It takes ONE woman sums up the story and aim of the LI TIM-OI FOUNDATION – founded in memory of the first Anglican woman priest…

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Calling Disciples | Art for A Epiphany 3

This was originally posted in 2014. Enjoy it again.

Hear what the Spirit is saying

Matthew 4:18,21 As he walked by the Sea of Galilee, he saw two brothers, Simon, who is called Peter, and Andrew his brother… As he went from there, he saw two other brothers, James son of Zebedee and his brother John…

Commentary by Hovak Najarian

Calling Disciples, mixed media, 2001, He Qi (b. 20th Century)

During the latter part of the nineteenth century, the industrial revolution with its engineering and technological marvels was becoming part of life and there was a sense the world had entered a modern age. Being “modern” became a self-congratulatory state of mind that continued well beyond the first half of the twentieth century. Around 1970, it was proclaimed the term “modern” no longer applied to how we perceived ourselves. We were in the “Post Modern” age. Today, “Modernism” is a designated time period that started in the mid 1930s and continued to the mid 1960s…

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What a homeless man taught me on Christmas morning

The original post appeared on The Messy Middle, January 4, 2017

When we truly “seek and serve Christ in all persons,” (see the Book of Common Prayer, 305) when we behave in a way that reveals we truly “love our neighbor as ourselves,” we open ourselves to the Christ meeting us and teaching us in ways we never expected. This is a story to make that point for you and me.

Continue reading “What a homeless man taught me on Christmas morning”