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
_____
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. 

_____

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;
____

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.


_____

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.

____


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



Newsletter, March 31, 2019

THIS SUNDAY: March 31, 2019, Rose City Park Presbyterian Church, 1907 NE 45thAve., Portland, OR 97213; Questions? Contact Pastor Brett Webb-Mitchell (919) 444-9111; brettwebbmitchell@gmail.com
_____
Dear Pilgrims of Lent!

While the calendar indicated it was spring a few days ago, one can now finally feel the sap rising through the flora and fauna, and the budding of trees and plants all around us is coming on strong. Daylight stretches longer and longer each day till mid-June. On a spit of an island in the Willamette River, the herons are back home and fortifying their nests, expecting offspring at any moment. Short sleeve shirts and shorts are ready to be worn, and all of us are ready for the warmth of the sun to given us natural vitamin D.

This Sunday, the Gospel story is a favorite parable of mine, because I always read something new in it that I had not read or seen or heard before. It is the parable of the Prodigal Child (Luke 15). As Presbyterian writer Frederick Buechner once wrote, “a parable is a small story with a large point. Most of the ones Jesus told have a kind of sad fun about them…[a]nd in the Prodigal Son, the elder brother’s pious pique when the returning Prodigal gets the red-carpet treatment is worthy of Moliere’s Tartuffe.” What is fascinating about this story is always the question: who is the “Prodigal?” Prodigal means to “give or yield profusely; lavish abundance” (dictionary.com). So was it the one son who spent all he had, who comes begging home? Or is it the parent, who holds a huge feast for the errant child? Or the other son, who wastes and spends all his emotional angst abundantly, obsessing about his brother and his dad? Come this Sunday, and let’s find out who among us has ever been the Prodigal Child or the Prodigal Parent?

_____

Events!

Sunday March 31, 2019, Pastor Brett at 1stPresby. Church Woodburn;
Sunday, March 31, 2019, Gathering and Worship, Rose City Park PCUSA;
Sunday, April 7, 2019, Gathering and Worship, Rose City Park PCUSA;
Sunday, April 14, 2019, Palm Sunday, Rose City Park PCUSA;
Sunday, April 21, 2019, Easter “Sunrise” Service, 8 am at Moholt’s Home. 
Sunday, April 28, 2019, Gathering and Worship, Rose City Park PCUSA;
____

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 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.

____

Poem

Prodigal, by Bob Hicok (in honor of the Gospel reading)

You could drive out of this country
and attack the world with your ambition,
invent wonder plasmas,
become an artist of the provocative gesture,
the suggestive nod, you could leave
wanting the world and return
carrying it, a noisy bundle
of steam and libido, a ball of fire
balanced on your tongue,
you might reclaim Main Street in a limo
longer than a sermon, wave at our red faces
while remembering that you were born
a clod hopper, a farmer’s kid,
and get over that hump once and for all
by telling A Great Man’s stories—
the dirty jokes of dictators, tidbits
of presidential hygiene, insights
into the psychotropic qualities of power
and the American tradition of kissing
moneyed ass. Your uncle would still
call you Roy Boy, pheasants
sun themselves beside the tracks,
waiting for the dew to burn off
before their first flight, and corn
grow so high that if you stood
in the field you’d disappear, the fact
aiming your eyes down the road.
____


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

Newsletter, March 17, 2019

THIS SUNDAY: March 17, 2019, Gresham Women’s Emergency Shelter, Portland, OR. Questions? Contact Pastor Brett Webb-Mitchell (919) 444-9111; brettwebbmitchell@gmail.com
_____
Dear Pilgrims of the Mother Hen,

Yes, you read this correctly: The Mother Hen. This week’s Scripture reading’s focus is Luke 13:31-35, in which Jesus laments the situation in Jerusalem, in which Jesus is told by the Pharisees the Herod wants to kill him. In response, Jesus talks about the city that has killed plenty of prophets before him, and shows great empathy for the people of Jerusalem by describing himself as a mother hen who wants to protect the people from the fox: “I (desire) to gather your children together as a hen gathers her brood under her wings.” In her book Bread of Angels, writer Barbara Brown Taylor describes Mother Hen Jesus as follows: "The church of Christ is a big fluffed up brooding hen, offering warmth and shelter to all kinds of chicks…planting herself between the foxes of this world and the fragile-boned chicks." This weekend, the Community of Pilgrims gets to play the role of a brooding hen, aiding others as we feed 90 women at the Gresham Women’s Emergency Shelter, as we have advertised for weeks. We will not be meeting at either Rose City Park Presbyterian Church or Colonial Heights Presbyterian Church, but at the Shelter. If you have any questions about it, please do not hesitate to contact me, Pastor Brett, at the phone number and email above. Come and join us, and see what the Fellowship, as a brooding hen, is doing as we follow Jesus, the Pilgrim God. 

_____
Events!
Sunday, March 10, 2019, Gathering and Worship, Rose City Park PCUSA;
Sunday, March 17, 2019, Gresham’s Women’s Emergency Shelter (Times TBA);
Saturday, March 23, 2019, Pastor Brett attending Regional Gathering of Small Intentional Christian Communities in Tacoma, WA;
Sunday, March 24, 2019, Gathering and Worship, Rose City Park PCUSA;
Sunday March 31, 2019, Pastor Brett at 1stPresby. Church Woodburn;
Sunday, March 31, 2019, Gathering and Worship, Rose City Park PCUSA;
Sunday, April 7, 2019, Gathering and Worship, Rose City Park PCUSA;
Sunday, April 14, 2019, Palm Sunday, Rose City Park PCUSA;
Sunday, April 21, 2019, Easter “Sunrise” Service, 8 am at Moholt’s Home. 
____
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 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.

____

_____

Poem

Lenten Poem, by Renita Weems

Lent is a time to take time to let the power
of our faith story take hold of us,
a time to let the events get up
and walk around in us,
a time to intensify our living unto Christ,
a time to hover over the thoughts of our hearts,
a time to place our feet in the streets of
Jerusalem or to walk along the sea and
listen to his Word,
a time to touch his robe
and feel the healing surge through us,
a time to ponder and a time to wonder….
Lent is a time to allow
a fresh new taste of God!
Perhaps we’re afraid to have time to think,
for thoughts come unbidden.
Perhaps we’re afraid to face our future
knowing our past.
Give us courage, O God,
to hear your Word
and to read our living into it.
Give us the trust to know we’re forgiven
and give us the faith
to take up our lives and walk.


____


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

Newsletter, CoP March 10, 2019

THIS SUNDAY: March 10, 2019, 4-6 pm, Rose City Park Presbyterian Church, 1907 NE 45thAve., Portland, OR 97213; Questions? Contact Pastor Brett Webb-Mitchell (919) 444-9111; brettwebbmitchell@gmail.com
_____
Dear Lenten Pilgrims,

It has begun, again. Our Lenten pilgrimage started with our gathering on Wednesday morning at Lorinda and Ray Moholt’s home, in which we were all reminded that we are created of the same matter as the stars in the skies. This season of Lent has a different feeling than Epiphany, of the growing light, illuminating the nature of Jesus, God with us. We now find ourselves on a pilgrimage with Jesus, the Pilgrim God, who will, over the weeks to come, remind us of our new Exodus with him, as a community of faith, to Jerusalem, and beyond, to the dawning of the reality of our life as members of the Realm of God’s love. The first Sunday of Lent takes us with Brother Jesus into the wilderness, a place of prayer, contemplation, temptation, the setting of priorities, and discovery of power (Luke 4:1-13). And while it is normal to “give up” something as a spiritual Lenten practice, Pastor Chris suggested that maybe as a Community of Pilgrims, for the next 40 days, each day we take something we don’t use or wear anymore, and put it into a box. At the end of Lent, we would donate the items to a shelter or thrift shop. Come this Sunday, as we begin, as a community of faith, this Lenten pilgrimage!

***
On Saturday, March 9, at 12 noon, in the Whitsell Auditorium of Portland Art Museum, there is a showing of a new film by Irene Taylor Brodsky, “Moonlight Sonata: Deafness in Three Movements,” following the ongoing story of Irene’s family, including Sally and Paul Taylor. Here’s the link! Let’s go to the movies! https://nwfilm.org/…/moonlight-sonata-deafness-in-three-mo…/

_____
Events!
Saturday, March 9, 2019, Movie, Moonlight Sonata: Deafness in Three Movements (see above);
Sunday, March 10, 2019, Pastor Brett, Vancouver Heights UMC;
Sunday, March 10, 2019, Gathering and Worship, Rose City Park PCUSA;
Sunday, March 17, 2019, Gresham’s Women’s Emergency Shelter (Times TBA);
Saturday, March 23, 2019, Pastor Brett attending Regional Gathering of Small Intentional Christian Communities in Tacoma, WA;
Sunday, March 24, 2019, Gathering and Worship, Rose City Park PCUSA;
Sunday March 31, 2019, Pastor Brett at 1stPresby. Church Woodburn;
Sunday, March 31, 2019, Gathering and Worship, Rose City Park PCUSA;
Sunday, April 7, 2019, Gathering and Worship, Rose City Park PCUSA;
____
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 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.


_____

Poem

To Keep a True Lent, by Robert Herrick

Is this a Fast, to keep
The Larder lean?
And clean
From fat of veals and sheep? 
Is it to quit the dish
Of flesh, yet still
To fill
The platter high with fish? 
Is it to fast an hour,
Or ragg’d go,
Or show
A down-cast look and sour? 
No: ’tis a Fast to dole Thy sheaf of wheat and meat
Unto the hungry soul. 
It is to fast from strife and old debate,
And hate;
To circumcise thy life.
To show a heart grief-rent;
To starve thy sin,
Not bin;
And that’s to keep thy Lent. 


____


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



Newsletter, Community fo Pilgrims, Feb. 24, 2019

THIS SUNDAY: Feb. 24, 2019, 4-6 pm, Rose City Park Presbyterian Church, 1907 NE 45thAve., Portland, OR 97213; Questions? Contact Pastor Brett Webb-Mitchell (919) 444-9111; brettwebbmitchell@gmail.com

_____

Dear Jesus’ Folk Who Walk the Walk, and Talk the Talk,

 

Yes, you read and heard me correctly: I am addressing those who walk the walk and talk the talk of Jesus, the Pilgrim God. We have all heard it said that “if you’re going to talk the talk, you have to walk the walk. It is a modern version of saying the ancient phrase: “actions speak louder than words,” or “practice what you preach,” or “walk it like you talk it.” Others condense it to “walk the talk.” Just the right size for a tattoo or bumper sticker for life. In this passage in Luke 6:27-38, Jesus gives his followers not only the “talk” or Hebrew Scripture lesson, but also the actual “walk” or moves that embody the “talk” or the moral axiom found in Hebrew Scripture. For example, consider this jewel of advice from Jesus: “Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who abuse you” (v. 27). Just imagine how much fewer wars internationally, civil strife nationally, abuse within the home, and fights between neighbors there would be if we not only considered the words or talkbut Jesus’ suggested actions or walk? Indeed, the rest of this passage is piled high with great suggestions for how we can follow the way of Jesus in both our talk and in our actions. Join us this Sunday as we break this down even more, and consider such gems as “turning the other cheek…”

 

***

As another piece of good news, news of the Community of Pilgrims has made the “big times” in the national publication, Presbyterian Outlook! Click on this link to learn more about what amazing things God is doing with our small Fellowship: https://pres-outlook.org/2019/02/of-valentines-day-holy-communion-gun-control-and-potlucks-prayer-scripture-service-and-the-community-of-pilgrims-presbyterian-fellowship/

 

_____

 

Events!

 

Sunday, Feb. 24, 2019, Pastor Brett preaches at First UMC, Seattle;

Sunday, Feb. 24, 2019, Gathering and Worship, Rose City Park PCUSA;

Sunday, March 3, 2019, Pastor Brett preaches at Christ UMC in Cedar Hills;

Sunday, March 3, 2019, Gathering and Worship, Rose City Park PCUSA;

Sunday, March 10, 2019, Gathering and Worship, Rose City Park PCUSA;

Sunday, March 17, 2019, Gresham’s Women’s Emergency Shelter (Times TBA);

Sunday, March 24, 2019, Gathering and Worship, Rose City Park PCUSA;

Sunday March 31, 2019, Pastor Brett at 1st Presby. Church Woodburn;

Sunday, March 31, 2019, Gathering and Worship, Rose City Park PCUSA

____


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 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.

____

Prayers of Celebrations and Concerns


·The Eagle Creek congregation for the loss of Nancy Spencer.

·Chris's youngest granddaughter Lilly who has some stuff to get through. Chris hopes that she will be coming out to stay with her for a few months.

·Quinn, the little girl in Los Angeles we have been praying for, who successfully completed her second round of stem cell therapy and did not contract sepsis. She is making progress and her mother is able to return to work. Her next step will be radiation therapy.  

·Methodist Pastor Rich Shull's six year old daughter Clementine who suffered a stroke, feeling in her right side is returning and she was recently well enough to be released for one day from St. Vincent's Hospital.

·Thanksgiving that Brett's three month old granddaughter Eddie is doing well and hopes that she will be out to see grandmother Liz this summer.

·Thanksgiving from Dianna who is enjoying her current renovation project at Chris's home.

·Other parts of the world at war including Syria, Yemen, Iraq, and Libya. 

·The 25th Amendment that it be used quickly and succinctly to remove our president.

·For people living in Russia where no one wants to live.

·Mary's father Gary who turned 86, he is there for her and she loves him.

 

_____

Poem

February, by James Schuyler

A chimney, breathing a little smoke.

The sun, I can't see

making a bit of pink

I can't quite see in the blue.

The pink of five tulips

at five p.m. on the day before March first.

The green of the tulip stems and leaves

like something I can't remember,

finding a jack-in-the-pulpit

a long time ago and far away.

Why it was December then

and the sun was on the sea

by the temples we'd gone to see.

One green wave moved in the violet sea

like the UN Building on big evenings,

green and wet

while the sky turns violet.

A few almond trees

had a few flowers, like a few snowflakes

out of the blue looking pink in the light.

A gray hush

in which the boxy trucks roll up Second Avenue

into the sky. They're just

going over the hill.

The green leaves of the tulips on my desk

like grass light on flesh,

and a green-copper steeple

and streaks of cloud beginning to glow.

I can't get over

how it all works in together

like a woman who just came to her window

and stands there filling it

jogging her baby in her arms.

She's so far off. Is it the light

that makes the baby pink?

I can see the little fists

and the rocking-horse motion of her breasts.

It's getting grayer and gold and chilly.

Two dog-size lions face each other

at the corners of a roof.

It's the yellow dust inside the tulips.

It's the shape of a tulip.

It's the water in the drinking glass the tulips are in.

It's a day like any other.

 

____

 

 

Buen Camino!

Pastors Brett & Chris 

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

Newsletter, Community of Pilgrims, Feb. 17, 2019

HIS SUNDAY: Feb. 17, 2019, 4-6 pm, Rose City Park Presbyterian Church, 1905 NE 45thAve., Portland, OR 97213; Questions? Contact Pastor Brett Webb-Mitchell (919) 444-9111; brettwebbmitchell@gmail.com
_____
Dear Blessed Ones of God,

Warm greetings on a rainy, cold, wintry, Oregon day! Time to snuggle up and pour some tea.

The focus Scripture this coming Sunday, Feb. 17, is Luke 6:17-26. We know this passage well in the Church as the Beatitudes or the “Blesseds.” Jesus has gathered his disciples and brought them to a place accessible to most people, many people, including even Gentiles, and the crowds of people who were marginalized because of their disability. Jesus heals all of those who came, hungering in many ways, for respect and acceptance. While Matthew has Jesus preaching with his “sermon on the mount,” Luke’s Jesus is among the people, eye-level, and speaks to them, giving them hope. Jesus also uses the second person, and is direct with the people, rather than speaking in third person, “Blessed are you,” and not “those who,” because Jesus identifies with the crowd, standing with them, among them, and not above them. And Jesus’ words are powerful as he preaches to us in our modern industrial world in which we live: “Blessed are the poor, for yours is the kingdom of God. Blessed are you who are hungry now, for you will be filled, Blessed are you who weep now, for you will laugh.” There is an immediacy to the message, in which Jesus promises them—and us—a blessing now, in the present, not in the past or the future: now! Join us this week as we continue to explore the Beatitudes in our modern age. 

_____

Events!

Sunday, Feb. 17, 2019, Pastor Brett preaches at First UMC, Eugene;
Sunday, Feb. 17, 2019, Gathering and Worship, Rose City Park PCUSA;
Sunday, Feb. 24, 2019, Pastor Brett preaches at First UMC, Seattle;
Sunday, Feb. 24, 2019, Gathering and Worship, Rose City Park PCUSA;
Sunday, March 3, 2019, Pastor Brett preaches at Christ UMC in Cedar Hills;
Sunday, March 3, 2019, Gathering and Worship, Rose City Park PCUSA;
Sunday, March 10, 2019, Gathering and Worship, Rose City Park PCUSA;
Sunday, March 17, 2019, Gresham’s Women’s Emergency Shelter (Times TBA);
____

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 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. 

_____

Poem

Listen, by Scott Jamison, inspired by the Beatitudes

This is how it’s going to be

Broken hearts will be held together

Grief will be out of a job for good

Pride will know the cold side of the door

What is right will be devoured

Bread will be broken with mercy

Purity will be the porchlight

And peace will be its moth and those

Who have known the back of hands

Will know every lifeline of my palm

This was how I had always planned.

____


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

Community of Pilgrims Meets Today!

Hi All,


Happy Sunday/Sabbath Day.


I drove out to Rose City Park Presbyterian Church this chilly morning, and all is clear, save for some snow in their parking lot.  Walk ways are clear. Feel free to park on NE 45th and not in parking lot, or on any parking space on the street. Chris and I determined we are a "go" for 4-6. Temps are warming up (!) to high 30s today, and rain--not ice and rain and snow--so, let's go.


Get out of the house! Let's bring some hot soups and chili together! See some of you later today.


Peace & grace, Brett



Newsletter, Community of Pilgrims Presbyterian Fellowship, Feb. 10, 2019

THIS SUNDAY: Feb. 10, 2019, 4-6 pm, Rose City Park Presbyterian Church, 1905 NE 45thAve., Portland, OR 97213; Questions? Contact Pastor Brett Webb-Mitchell (919) 444-9111; brettwebbmitchell@gmail.com

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Dear Followers, Searching Ones, Unexpectedly Daring Ones, Family and Friends,

 

Yes, you read that correctly: “Unexpectedly Daring Ones.” The Community of Pilgrims is comprised of an unexpectedly daring group of people, with the audacity to strike out and start something new—namely, a new Christian faith community—in one of the least religious cities in the USA: Portland, OR. We are either daft, faithful, or a mixture of both. But that is what the unexpected God in Christ brings to us daily: an opportunity to do something that seems daft to the world, but is faithful unto God. That’s, at least, what I’m drawing from this week’s Gospel reading from Luke (Luke 5:1-11). It is the story of these people who fish—namely Simon, James, and John—who have had no luck going fishing one day. Frustrated, with little to show from their efforts after fishing all night, Jesus (who is in the boat and just finished preaching to the crowd), instructs his doubtful, beleaguered disciples to go out into the deeper parts of the lake. There, where Jesus told them to go, they found so much fish that they needed other people who fish to help them with the catch, because their nets were stretching and tearing apart because of the amazing amount of fish they were hauling into their nets. Simon—the one who always seems to doubt first, and then believe—begs Jesus to leave him because of Simon’s shame and sense of disgrace. In that moment, maybe Jesus shot Simon a knowing wink and simply said to him, “Don’t be afraid, for from here on you will be catching people!” And while Simon probably continued to fish, he also became well-known for fishing for people, for followers, of the Pilgrim God. Heck: we, today, are part of Simon Peter’s catch. And in turn, we are called to reach out and share the good news with others about what God in Christ is doing in our world today as we strive for justice, practice loving kindness, in our humbling pilgrimage with God. Join us this week as we explore this story from Luke in relationship to our story of creating a new faith community, and be prepared to go to the “deep waters” of the City of Roses.

 

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On a separate note, we are in the news of the Presbytery of the Cascades.  News of our being awarded an investment grant is in today’s Cascades Connections.  Go to the end of the email, and there we are! Share the news with others, and invite them to join us some Sunday, and join us often! 

https://mailchi.mp/cascadespresbytery/cascades-connections-thnibxvcgy-586625?e=63889e4a6c

 

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About snow and Community of Pilgrims: I, Brett, will send out an email and FaceBook blast on Sunday late morning (11:00 am) if it looks like we are not meeting or meeting. Either way, be on the look-out for a posting on FaceBook or an email. Thanks!

 

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Events!

Sunday, Feb. 10, 2019, Gathering and Worship, Rose City Park Presby. Church;

Sunday, Feb. 17, 2019, Pastor Brett preaches at First UMC, Eugene;

Sunday, Feb. 17, 2019, Gathering and Worship, Rose City Park PCUSA;

Sunday, Feb. 24, 2019, Pastor Brett preaches at First UMC, Seattle;

Sunday, Feb. 24, 2019, Gathering and Worship, Rose City Park PCUSA;

Sunday, March 3, 2019, Pastor Brett preaches at Christ UMC in Cedar Hills;

Sunday, March 3, 2019, Gathering and Worship, Rose City Park PCUSA;

Sunday, March 10, 2019, Gathering and Worship, Rose City Park PCUSA;

Sunday, March 17, 2019, Gresham’s Women’s Emergency Shelter (Times TBA);

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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 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. 

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Prayer Concerns and Celebrations


·     Prayers for those who do not have a home and live on the city streets, starving, in the middle of this winter season;

·     Prayers for those we know who are in the hospital or rehabilitations center and healing;

·     Prayers for those who are addicted, abused, and lonely;

·     Prayers for peace in the world, especially in the war-torn areas of Yemen and Syria;

·     Prayers for those seeking asylum and sanctuary anywhere in the world;

·     Prayers for justice wherever there is injustice in this world.

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Poem

Stopping By Woods on a Snowy Evening, by Robert Frost

Whose woods these are I think I know.   

His house is in the village though;   

He will not see me stopping here   

To watch his woods fill up with snow.   

 

My little horse must think it queer   

To stop without a farmhouse near   

Between the woods and frozen lake   

The darkest evening of the year.   

 

He gives his harness bells a shake   

To ask if there is some mistake.   

The only other sound’s the sweep   

Of easy wind and downy flake.   

 

The woods are lovely, dark and deep,   

But I have promises to keep,   

And miles to go before I sleep,   

And miles to go before I sleep.

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Buen Camino!

Pastors Brett & Chris

Rev. Dr. Brett Webb-Mitchell (919) 444-9111; brettwebbmitchell@gmail.com

Rev. Chris Dungan (503) 724-7060; chrisdungan1@msn.com

Newsletter, Community of Pilgrims, Feb. 3, 2019

THIS SUNDAY: Feb. 3, 2019, 2:00-4:30 pm, Rose City Park Presbyterian Church, Bach Cantata Choir Concert; Questions? Contact Pastor Brett Webb-Mitchell (919) 444-9111; brettwebbmitchell@gmail.com

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Dear Pilgrims, Wayfarers, Sojourners and Music Lovers,

 

Greetings on another sunny January day in the rainy, gray city of Portland!

 

One of the lectionary readings this coming Sunday is 1 Cor. 13:1-13, in which Paul writes about love. Many of us have heard it read at many weddings and other love-centered occasions in our life as a church and our personal lives. It is appropriate at weddings, because it reminds us of the miracle that is being manifest before us: two people in love (with eros, philia, and agape love all blended together), recognizing what brought and will keep them together in the years to come, in good times and hard moments, sickness and health…well, you know the rest: love. The writer Marilynne Robinson wrote this in her book, Gilead: "Love is holy because it is like grace--the worthiness of its object is never really what matters."

 

Recognizing and celebrating this “thing” called love, especially with Valentine’s Day quickly approaching, a slight change of plans for this Sunday: music!  Join Community of Pilgrims at the Oregon Bach Cantata Choir Concert at Rose City Park Presbyterian Church at 2:00 pm to 4:30, and bring a friend or family member!  It will be over before the Super Bowl is over. Of course, J. S. Bach loved God with all his being, and showed his love for God by composing and playing music:"I play the notes as they are written but it is God who makes the music." Invite other friends and family members to join us at Rose City Park Presbyterian Church this Sunday afternoon (Feb. 3)!  Here’s a link to their webpage for more information: http://www.bachcantatachoir.org 

 

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Events!

Sunday, Feb. 3, 2019, Music! Rose City Park Presbyterian Church, 2-4:30 pm;

Sunday, Feb. 10, 2019, Pastor Brett preaching at Trinity UMC, Eugene, 10 am;

Sunday, Feb. 10, 2019, Gathering and Worship, Rose City Park Presby. Church;

Sunday, Feb. 17, 2019, Pastor Brett preaches at First UMC, Eugene;

Sunday, Feb. 17, 2019, Gathering and Worship, Rose City Park PCUSA;

Sunday, Feb. 24, 2019, Pastor Brett preaches at First UMC, Seattle;

Sunday, Feb. 24, 2019, Gathering and Worship, Rose City Park PCUSA;

Sunday, March 3, 2019, Pastor Brett preaches at Christ UMC in Cedar Hills;

Sunday, March 3, 2019, Gathering and Worship, Rose City Park PCUSA;

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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 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. 

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Prayer Concerns and Celebrations

·Kathy's friend Beverly who has been diagnosed with Parkinson's disease.

·Linda's brother Gary who also has Parkinson's.

·Quinn, the little girl in Los Angeles we have been praying for, who started her second round of stem cell therapy. Her family is quarantined in the hospital for a month because she developed sepsis the last time she had this therapy.

·Clementine, 6-year-old daughter of a Methodist minister, who suffered a brain hemorrhage and is recovering well at St. Vincent's Hospital.

·Federal workers who have returned to work.

·Ric and Jo Ann's friend Ken Miller who has been diagnosed with prostate cancer yet maintains a positive attitude.

·Ric and Jo Ann going to Guatemala in February.

·Donald, that we may get through this mess.

·People in the U.K. going through the chaos of Brexit.

·Children in Yemen, Syria, at the wall, lost in our legal system, and separated from their parents.

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Poem

The Stillness of the World Before Bach, by Lars Gustafsson

There must have been a world before 
the Trio Sonata in D, a world before the A minor Partita, 
but what kind of a world? 
A Europe of vast empty spaces, unresounding, 
everywhere unawakened instruments 
where the Musical Offering, the Well-tempered Clavier 
never passed across the keys. 
Isolated churches 
where the soprano-line of the Passion 
never in helpless love twined round 
the gentler movements of the flute, 
broad soft landscapes 
where nothing breaks the stillness 
but old woodcutters' axes, 
the healthy barking of strong dogs in winter 
and, like a bell, skates biting into fresh ice; 
the swallows whirring through summer air, 
the shell resounding at the child's ear 
and nowhere Bach nowhere Bach 
the world in a skater's silence before Bach. 

 

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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

Newsletter, Community of Pilgrims, Jan. 6, 2019

THIS SUNDAY: Jan. 6, 2019, 4-6 pm, 1828 SW Terrace DR., Portland, OR 97201(Home of Arlena Barnes and Bill Kinsey) Questions? Contact Pastor Brett Webb-Mitchell (919) 444-9111; brettwebbmitchell@gmail.com

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Dear Coddiwomplers, Saunterers, Flaneurs, Friends, and Family members,

As I write this email note, it is the 10th day of Christmastide, and according to the old song, this is the day with “10 Lords a’ Leaping.” As I spy a Christmas tree still up here and there among the households in Portland and Seattle—signs of traditionalists here and there—I am reminded that Christmas does not come to an end until Jan. 5.

Then, on Jan. 6th: Happy Epiphany! Scripture focus is on Matthew 2:1-12: the story of the Magi visiting the Christ child. In the South, this was known as “Old Christmas,” because, in 1582, the inefficient and inaccurate Julian calendar was replaced with the Gregorian calendar by Catholic European countries. Protestant Europe kept the old Julian calendar for another 200 years, as a protest movement against the then-Pope. In 1752, everyone in Europe finally changed to the Gregorian calendar. However, news of this change didn’t come to the American South until well after 1752, where they still celebrated Christmas on Jan. 6 rather than Dec. 25.

Regardless of whether or not we call it Epiphany or Old Christmas, this is the day in the life of the Church when we recognize the pilgrimage of the Magi or Wise Men from other parts of the world outside of Israel, who first stopped and visited a frightened and insecure “King” Herod on their pilgrimage, bringing gifts to the Holy Child in Bethlehem. The parallels with our world today are quite remarkable: insecure and frightened leadership among world leaders; the largest forced migration of people around the world; with our eyes looking down as we both try to make sense of the world today and hold on to hope. What the Magi remind us to do, even today, is to look up at the star, to get perspective as to our place and situation in the world, and remembering the presence of the God who loves us still, even and especially today.

As we begin 2019 in earnest, this is my prayer: that on our pilgrimage of faith as a Community of Pilgrims, we follow God’s created-star before us, and also the examples of the living Christ with us, who accompanies us, ever-motivated to move forward by the Spirit within us, as we welcome all who are seeking a community of hope, faith, and love. Christmastide blessings, Pastor Brett

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Events!


Sunday, Jan. 6, 2018, Epiphany! 4-6 pm Gathering and Worship will be at the home of Arlena Barnes and Bill Kinsey, 1828 SW Terrace DR., Portland, OR 97201.

Sunday, Jan. 13, 2018, Baptism of the Lord Sunday, Rose City Park Presby. Church;

Sunday, Jan. 20, 2018, Gathering and Worship, Rose City Park Presby. Church;

Sunday, Jan. 27, 2018, Pastor Brett preaching at 1st Presbyterian Church, Salem;

Sunday, Jan. 27, 2018, Gathering and Worship, Rose City Park Presby. Church.

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Requests


* It isn’t too late to Pledge! Attached you will find a Pledge Form. Feel free to bring it with you this Sunday!

* 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 On

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Poem


The Journey of the Magi, by T. S. Eliot

A cold coming we had of it,

Just the worst time of the year

For a journey, and such a long journey:

The ways deep and the weather sharp,

The very dead of winter.'

And the camels galled, sorefooted, refractory,

Lying down in the melting snow.

There were times we regretted

The summer palaces on slopes, the terraces,

And the silken girls bringing sherbet.

Then the camel men cursing and grumbling

and running away, and wanting their liquor and women,

And the night-fires going out, and the lack of shelters,

And the cities hostile and the towns unfriendly

And the villages dirty and charging high prices:

A hard time we had of it.

At the end we preferred to travel all night,

Sleeping in snatches,

With the voices singing in our ears, saying

That this was all folly.


Then at dawn we came down to a temperate valley,

Wet, below the snow line, smelling of vegetation;

With a running stream and a water-mill beating the darkness,

And three trees on the low sky,

And an old white horse galloped away in the meadow.

Then we came to a tavern with vine-leaves over the lintel,

Six hands at an open door dicing for pieces of silver,

And feet kicking the empty wine-skins.

But there was no information, and so we continued

And arriving at evening, not a moment too soon

Finding the place; it was (you might say) satisfactory.


All this was a long time ago, I remember,

And I would do it again, but set down

This set down

This: were we led all that way for

Birth or Death? There was a Birth, certainly

We had evidence and no doubt. I had seen birth and death,

But had thought they were different; this Birth was

Hard and bitter agony for us, like Death, our death.

We returned to our places, these Kingdoms,

But no longer at ease here, in the old dispensation,

With an alien people clutching their gods.

I should be glad of another death.


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Buen Camino!

Pastors Brett & Chris

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