Newsletter, April 7, 2019

THIS SUNDAY: April 7, 2019, Rose City Park Presbyterian Church, 1907 NE 45thAve., Portland, OR 97213; Questions? Contact Pastor Brett Webb-Mitchell (919) 444-9111; brettwebbmitchell@gmail.com
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Greetings, Lenten Pilgrims,

While February, 2019, was one of the coldest months in Oregon history, and March, 2019, was one of the coldest and driest in Oregon history, April has thankfully begun with soft drizzles and times of rain, hopefully fulfilling the promise of May flowers. 

As our Lenten pilgrimage draws to a close, with Easter only two weeks away, the story that guides our journey this week is John 12:1-8, in which Jesus is visiting his friends Mary, Martha, and Lazarus. Mary shows an incredible act of hospitality, taking nard, which was very expensive, and anointing Jesus’ feet with the perfume, and washing the excess with her hair. There is no doubt that she was giving from the heart with such a lavish gift, and not counting the cost. It reminds us that when we really love someone, the heart leads our hands, our bodies, in giving actions. We want to give the one we love not just material things, regardless of the cost, but want the other person to know how we feel, with full hearts overflowing with love. That’s how much Mary loved Jesus: with an overflowing heart. This is how much God loved and loves the world: with an overflowing heart as God gives us God’s beloved, Jesus, the Pilgrim God. Join us this Sunday as we continue to consider such self-giving, Spirit-led, overflowing love in our faith community as we serve one another, our neighbors, strangers near and far, and God. 

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Events!

Sunday, April 7, 2019, Gathering and Worship, Rose City Park PCUSA;
Friday, April 12, 2019, 7 am, Lorinda Moholt’s Birthday Party, Multnomah Art Center,
Sunday, April 14, 2019, Palm Sunday, Gathering and Worship, Rose City Park PCUSA;
Sunday, April 21, 2019, 8 am, Easter “Sunrise” Service, at Moholt’s Home. 
Sunday, April 28, 2019, Gathering and Worship, Rose City Park PCUSA;
May 5, 2019, Gathering and Worship, Rose City Park PCUSA;
May 12, 2019, Gathering and Worship, Rose City Park PCUSA;
May 19, 2019, 2:00 pm., Bach Cantata Choir Concert, Rose City Park PCUSA;
May 26, 2019, Gathering and Worship, Rose City Park PCUSA;
June 16, 2019: LGBTQ+ Pride Parade, Portland, OR, Time TBD;
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Requests

* Regarding the t-shirts: Please pick up your t-shirt this Sunday, and bring cash or a check made out to Community of Pilgrims, in the amount of $8 for adult M, L, and XL, and youth; and $12 for adult 2XL. Thank you!
* We also have plenty of beautiful leather bracelets for each member of the community! Pick one up this Sunday!
* In the coming months, Pastor Chris and I will be quoting from and referencing sections from the book, Wisdom Distilled from the Daily by Joan Chittister, a Benedictine monk, who, in this book, focuses on the nature of living life in an intentional Christian community, which is our aim as Community of Pilgrims. We can either order books for those interested and sending in a request for so-many copies, or feel free to order it or buy it from your favorite book distributor. Wisdom Distilled from the Daily, Joan Chittister, San Francisco: Harper One. 
* Another book for our consideration: The Intentional Christian Community Handbookby David Janzen (Paraclete Press, 2013). We may use this book as we delve deeper into understanding what it means to be an intentional Christian community of faith.


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Poem

Mary, of Bethany, by Andrea Skevington

And so you come once more to Bethany,
and share a meal with Lazarus,
a resurrection feast,
foreshadowing, foreshining
all those kingdom feasts you told of:
wedding banquets with long tables
set wide with good things,
with room enough for all,
welcome at your table.

Now, in Bethany, the house is ablaze with light,
shutters and doors thrown open,
all wide open with joy unspeakable,
music, laughter, dancing, wild thanksgiving
for one who was dead is alive again,

And all night, while crowds pour in from Jerusalem,
the feast goes on, and on,
as Mary enters now, cheeks glistening with joy,
past her brother at your side, back from the grave.

She kneels at your feet again,
pours out extravagant nard,
scandalous anointing of your warm, living feet,
unbinds her hair and lets it flow like water
over them, wiping them in such reckless
and tender thanksgiving.
Fragrance fills the room, the house, the night,
as more people pour from Jerusalem to you,
to you, who comes to us in our weeping,
who shares our bread with us,
and brings us to such joy as this.

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Buen Camino!
Pastors Brett & Chris 
Rev. Dr. Brett Webb-Mitchell (919) 444-9111; brettwebbmitchell@gmail.comRev. Chris Dungan (503) 724-7060; chrisdungan1@msn.com