November 12, Twenty-third Sunday after Pentecost
A note about the readings: Track 1 is a semi-continuous Old Testament reading and includes Genesis through Judges in year A; the Davidic Covenant and Wisdom literature in Year B; the prophets Elijah, Elisha, Amos, Hosea, Isaiah, Jeremiah, Joel and Habbakuk in Year C. But All Saints uses Track 2 in which the Old and New Testament readings are thematically chosen to relate to the day’s Gospel. Year A Gospel readings focus on Matthew, Year B on Mark, and Year C on Luke. We are currently in Year A, and the first Sunday of Advent, December 3, begins Year B.
All Saints Day, 2017
Dear Friends and Parishioners:
In 1942 Aaron Copeland composed Fanfare for the Common Man. To me, his title for this regal composition is almost the perfect description for All Saints Day. That is, it is a grand tribute to the common person. These are the people that have no statues or streets named after them and that history and later generations will forget, but that by faith, we assert, God sees, remembers, and cherishes. All these common saints are marked by a common faith. This faith is not a credal assent, but rather a kind of daily courage to move forward and continue to practice compassion and work for peace.
This particular day has tried the mettle of all of us. The terrorist in our midst has once again shown us that our very lives are fragile and that death is capricious. It has shaken our sense of confidence in the structures that define our lives. Our governmental leaders advise us to be strong and to go about our daily lives. This is good insofar as it goes, but I think the “knight of faith” uses these moments to move closer to his or her essential connection to the Spirit that creates, sustains, and animates life.
Common saints are not those who believe all kinds of details of miraculous things in the Bible or elsewhere. Common saints are those who wake up every morning with a sense that despite thoughts and feelings to the contrary, my life is and the life of others are worth living. Basically, faith is a statement that life is of such infinite worth that I will continue to practice empathy, compassion, and justice, and will work hard to restore and enhance the dignity of every human being.
This Sunday, our Liturgy will be a fanfare for common men and women everywhere who are marked by a quiet, almost invisible faith that fills this world with the possibility of love.
The Rev. Steven J. Yagerman
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CELEBRATION OF ALL SAINTS DAY
The Levy Choir School will sing this Sunday for the second time this year, joining forces with our professional adults in a jazz rendition of When the Saints Go Marchin’ In, arranged by Nicholas White. The jazz ensemble led by Dennis Joseph consists of clarinet, bass, drums and piano. The Psalm is a setting of Praise His Holy Name by Keith Hampton, arranged by Chip Prince, our favorite supply tenor and pianist for the fabulous jazz ensemble. During Communion as a moment of reflection for those that have passed from earth, staff singers Sarah and Marta sing the haunting Pie Jesu from John Rutter’s Requiem. Come celebrate All Saints Day Sunday at 10am.
HALLOWEEN ON OUR BLOCK OF E. 6OTH
Festivities Halloween day started at the tram, where little people had their pictures taken and were given large bags to hold their candy. Parents equipped with maps began the evening’s adventures. In just one hour, Suzanne handed out over 100 goody bags with Choir School flyers to neighborhood children. The evening ended with a Levy Choir School party hosted by one of the parents. Kids and parents all gathered for Halloween food and merriment.
September 20, 2017
Dear Friends and Parishioners:
Jesus said, when a grain of wheat falls into the ground and dies…it will bear much fruit. In the summer it certainly feels like the church goes into a kind of reverse hibernation as people scatter far and wide for vacation. But through the pain of this dissolution, I pray that the church will once again resurrect this fall to show forth the glory of God’s presence in love, worship and service. Even in the summer, there were many intimations of new growth and I believe with your help, presence and support we can once again see All Saints Church be a powerful manifestation of the gospel as it constitutes the local body of Christ in sacramental community.
Although we are blessed to have a reasonably large endowment, the church is still dependent on the gifts and pledges of our parishioners. Moreover, our giving is more a part of our personal devotion and commitment than it is maintenance of our church operation. Like offering our prayers and incense at the altar, giving our gifts and resources to the church is an expression of adoration that deepens and manifests faith.
The Joy of Volunteering
Every week your fellow parishioners and neighbors spend hours of their Saturday in food preparation and cooking in order to feed God’s hungry and needy children. It is strong spiritual medicine, both in the giving and the receiving. You are invited and welcome to participate. All you have to do is whistle! You know how to whistle don’t you?
Our sister church in London, St. Clement’s, continues to minister to evacuees from buildings neighboring Grenfell Tower. St Clement and St James serve the parish covering North Kensington. Please pray for our friends in London. Fr. Yagerman and Fr. Alan Everett have been in touch, and All Saints collected and sent financial help. To learn more, click anglicannews.org for an article about their important relief response, quoting Fr. Everett: “Because of this church’s longstanding community outreach work, it is a highly trusted place. We are trusted by people of all faiths. This response is the social gospel. In the wake of the tragedy people might ask where is God? God is present in the hands that are reaching out to help.” In this video, Bishop of Kensington Rt. Reverend Graham Tomlin describes St. Clement’s relief efforts. The June letter below from Fr. Yagerman has more information.letter June 27
Read the Rector’s Pentecost letter by clicking here.
Click on the Levy Choir School page to see a retrospective of the school’s first year.
We welcome those who are single, married, divorced, widowed, straight, gay, confused, well-heeled or down-at-heel. We especially welcome wailing babies and excited toddlers. We welcome you whether you can sing like Pavarotti or just growl quietly to yourself. You’re welcome here if you’re just browsing, just woken up or just got out of prison. We don’t care if you’re more Christian than the Archbishop of Canterbury or haven’t been to church since Christmas 10 years ago. We extend a special welcome to those who are over 60 but not grown up yet and to teenagers who are growing up too fast.
We welcome keep-fit moms, football dads, starving artists, tree huggers, latte sippers, vegetarians, junk food eaters. We welcome those in recovery or still addicted. We welcome you if you’re having problems, are down in the dumps or don’t like organized religion. We’re not that keen on it either. We offer welcome to those who think the Earth is flat, work too hard, don’t work, can’t spell, or are here because Granny is visiting and wanted to come to church. We welcome those who are inked, pierced, both or neither.
We offer a special welcome to those who could use a prayer right now, had religion shoved down their throats as kids or got lost and wound up here by mistake. We welcome pilgrims, tourists, seekers, doubters and you.
[a welcome used by Coventry Cathedral]
Our sister parish in London: St. Clement (spring photo), and historic St. James’ Church Norlands (winter photo), together serve a parish covering the neighborhoods of Notting Dale, Notting Hill, North Kensington, and Holland Park. Visit their website and a wikipedia entry to learn more about them. Fr. Alan Everett, vicar for six years, has invited us to visit when in London. One All Saints parishioner attending St. Clement’s service in February was gratified to hear our parish named specifically during the Prayers of the People, and after the service, she enjoyed a delicious lunch with the vicar and his wife and daughters before flying back to New York. Read Fr. Yagerman’s introductory letter to our sister parish on their website by clicking here.