THIS SUNDAY: May 12, 2019, Rose City Park PCUSA’s Chapel, 1907 NE 45thAve., Portland, OR 97213 Questions? Contact Pastor Brett Webb-Mitchell (919) 444-9111; firstname.lastname@example.org
Dear Pilgrims of a Faithful Community,
Spring is all around us! If you suffer from allergies, then there is some regret going your way too, though I hope the beauty of the world around us—with flowers blooming, birds chirping, the budding greenness of trees, and warmer days—can be enjoyed by one and all.
The focus Scripture this week is Acts 9:36-43, in which an early disciple of the Way by the name of Tabitha (aka Dorcas) suddenly falls ill and dies. Word of her illness got to Peter, and a miracle was performed, in which Peter witnessed the power of the Spirit of God in bringing her back to life, as confirmed by all the saints and widows in the community. I thought of the power of this story of a faith community, and relationships within a community of faith, when I read of the news of the death of Jean Vanier, who, along with Father Thomas, began the L’Arche community movement in Trosly, France. L'Arche was the subject of my doctoral dissertation. I spent three days with Jean Vanier, talking about l’Arche. Vanier would appreciate this story of the early church community, because it reminds us that “community is a sign that love is possible in a materialistic world, where people so often either ignore or fight each other. It is a sign that we don’t need a lot of money to be happy—in fact, the opposite…love doesn’t mean doing extraordinary or heroic things. It means knowing how to do ordinary things with tenderness.” After all, it was love that brought Dorcas back to life. Join us this Sunday as we continue to explore more about the nature of being a faith community in our world today!
Lenten Clothing Collection Update! Thank you, all, for your generous donation of clothes (our Lenten devotional communal practice) that went to Snow Cap, a non-profit that provides these clothes to people in need! Many bags of clothes went to this worthy non-profit! Well done!
May 12, 2019, Gathering and Worship, Rose City Park PCUSA;
May 19, 2019, Pastor Brett preaching at First UMC Ashland, OR;
May 19, 2019, 2:00 pm., Bach Cantata Choir Concert, Rose City Park PCUSA;
May 26, 2019, 9:30 & 11 am, Pastor Brett, First Presby. Church, Salem, OR;
May 26, 2019, Gathering and Worship, Rose City Park PCUSA;
June 2, 2019, Gathering and Worship, Rose City Park PCUSA;
June 9, 2019, Gathering and Worship, Rose City Park, PCUSA;
June 12-15, Pastor Brett at OR-ID UMC Annual Conference, Eugene, OR;
June 16, 2019: LGBTQ+ Pride Parade, Portland, OR, Time TBD;
June 23, 2019, Gathering and Worship, Rose City Park PCUSA;
June 30, Gathering and Worship, Rose City Park PCUSA;
* 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 Dailyby 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.
* Finally, Community and Growthby Jean Vanier will be picked up as a book for us to read together.
This summer and autumn, we will choose a Sunday to be a book discussion time, choosing a chapter or two from one of the books to be our discussion for that Sunday instead of a homily!
Prayers of Celebrations and Concerns
·The family of Christian writer Rachel Held Evans and the community who followed her. She died Saturday at age 37 after spending weeks in the hospital for an infection. She is survived by her husband and two young children.
·The family of Don Fowler who died this week.
·Celebration for a good life for Chuck's sister Mariana who died recently.
·Celebration for Liz that she can move back into her own home.
·Susan and others like her who help care for the sick and the elderly.
·Mrs. Anderson, Brett's son-in-law's grandmother who recently died. She was 91 and lived with senile dementia the last five years.
·Brett's daughter Adrianne who is celebrating her 31st birthday and her first Mothers’ Day.
·Unity and peace in our country, Yemen, Syria, Venezuela, Iran, Israel, and Palestine.
·The United Methodist Church facing a surge in defections and acts of defiance after the vote to ban same-sex marriage and ordination of LGBTQ+ clergy.
·Linda's grandson Sayer who hopes to be accepted into the Winterhaven School, a Portland Public Schools science, technology, and math focus option school.
·The family and friends of Jean Vanier and l'Arche, co-founder of L’Arche.
·The school shooting in Colorado. Prayers for gun control.
Praying, by Mary Oliver
It doesn’t have to be
The blue iris, it could be
Weeds in a vacant lot, or a few
Small stones; just
Pay attention, then patch
A few words together and don’t try
To make them elaborate, this isn’t
A contest but the doorway
Into thanks, and a silence in which
Another voice may speak.
Pastors Brett & Chris