The Presiding Bishop of the Episcopal Church, Michael Curry, and Forward Movement are inviting churches to participate in the Good Book Club’s study of the Gospel of Mark during the season of Epiphany (January – February).
St. Augustine’s is excited to join this study to immerse ourselves in God’s word during the season when we reflect on how God has been revealed to us in the Incarnation of Jesus Christ.
How to participate
All you really need to participate is to get your hands on a Bible. Mother Jenny recommends the Harper-Collins NRSV Study Bible. The translation we most frequently read and study in church is the New Revised Standard Version (NRSV). You can also find a number of apps for your smartphone and online resources for reading the Bible.
Good Book Club Study on Saturdays – Join us via Zoom at 4:00 pm. January 9, 16, 23; February 6, 13. Click here for Zoom Link; Meeting ID: 303 597 2920 Password: 1857
Rector’s Bible Study, 10:45 am – 11:30 am – This group will meet after our Sunday worship and an abbreviated Coffee Hour on January 17th, February 7th and February 14th.
The schedule of readings begins on January 1st, the Feast of the Holy Name. A schedule/list can be found below.
Follow St. Augustine’s on Facebook for regular updates and insights.
Participate in a free Webinar taught by Montreal Theological College Principal (and Andrew Owen’s Godfather!!) The Rev. Dr. Jesse Zink on Tuesday, January 12th at 7pm. Information can be found here.
WHERE: Zoom (see link and connection information below)
Join us for a Christmas Eve Festival of Christmas Lessons and Carols. We will hear readings from Holy Scripture and sacred music as we celebrate the saving work of God and the miracle of the Incarnation in the birth of the Christ Child.
Music offerings will include music from our “A St. A’s Christmas” album and new recordings from St. A’s Virtual Voices.
Please invite your friends and family to join us for this wonderful service. All are welcome!!
Meeting ID: 303 597 2920 Passcode: 1857 One tap mobile +16465588656,,3035972920#,,,,,,0#,,1857# US (New York) +13017158592,,3035972920#,,,,,,0#,,1857# US (Washington D.C)
Dial by your location +1 646 558 8656 US (New York) +1 301 715 8592 US (Washington D.C) +1 312 626 6799 US (Chicago) +1 669 900 9128 US (San Jose) +1 253 215 8782 US (Tacoma) +1 346 248 7799 US (Houston) Meeting ID: 303 597 2920 Passcode: 1857 Find your local number: https://zoom.us/u/amwCxnOae
WHAT: Drive-thru, Socially-distant Birthday Party for Jesus
WHEN: Christmas Eve, December 24th @4PM
WHERE: St. A’s Church Lawn
How do we celebrate birthdays pandemic-style? With a drive-thru birthday party!! Join us for a quick festive celebration of Jesus’ birthday! We will have decorations set up! Party favors to give out!
What do you bring to a Birthday Party for Jesus?
Your voices – “The best way to spread Christmas cheer is singing loud for all to hear [behind a mask, of course]!”
Happy Birthday signs to show us or put on your car windows.
Birthday Cards for Jesus! We will collect these.
Birthday Presents for Jesus!! (Here’s his gift registry from the Croton Caring Committee. Gifts given to Jesus will be given to families in our village receiving assistance from the Healthy Start Program! We need: Cereal, Oatmeal, Pancake mix/syrup (one of the major Elf food groups), Breakfast Bars, etc.
How is this going to go down?
Please arrive at St. A’s in your cars just before 4pm. We will have folks helping you find parking spots to line up in front of the Church.
Depending on weather and what is permitted to keep us safe, we will either participate from our cars or scattered around the lawn, masks on, singing a couple of songs and saying some prayers.
Families will be invited to bring up their cards and presents for Jesus and given a goodie bag.
I can’t be there at 4pm on Christmas Eve! Can I still participate?!!!
YES!! We have a bin on the Parish House porch (next to the Christmas Tree) where you can drop off food donations! When this Christmas storm passes, we will put our festive nativity back out. But for the safety of the Holy Family, we let them in the Parish Hall until the rain stops.
Starting in November 2020 we will engage in holy scripture in a new way. We will become scribes and write the Gospel of Mark as we read it. We hope this will be a new way for us to encounter the Bible as we engage our senses in a different way with God’s word. This practice will continue into January. Whether you use a pencil and notepad, your computer, or fancy pens with a dedicated journal, we hope you will share your journey with us. There is no right or wrong way to do this! This schedule helps with a pace of no more than 10 verses per day. Slow down or charge ahead! Post pictures of your verses on our Facebook page and Instagram account. #gospelsbyhand #stacroton
An Unofficial Letter from Bishop Assistant Mary D. Glasspool
Dear Friends and Colleagues,
In this issue: Church and State
What I wouldn’t do to be a fly on the wall (a fly who could be in multiple places at the same time) to listen to a host of sermons this Sunday! What a gift of a Gospel Lesson! (And I, too, will be preaching, so I will have to tame my own excitement.) Giving to Caesar (or “the emperor” – but Caesar is so much more delicious!) the things that are Caesar’s and to God the things that are God’s can be expounded in so many different ways and certainly seems to be low-hanging fruit right now.
For the early Church, the task of interpreting Jesus’ statement: Give to the emperor the things that are the emperor’s, and to God the things that are God’s was an ongoing one. How is the Christian to relate to political structures? If the church can at times support and at times must resist the state, the answers are never simple nor are they final. The struggle resumes with every new situation.
From this wrestling Jesus was not exempt. In fact, in his decisions he was, finally, alone – because both church and state conspired against him. It was both the political and the religious leaders who did him in. One can hardly imagine a heavier demand: called upon to obey God, not simply in the face of political wrath but without the support of the community of faith. But it still happens.
If we think this passage provides us a basis upon which to argue any aspect of the separation of church and state – we’re wrong. We’re wrong because, like Jesus, we’re always left with that struggle in how we live out our lives. The issue of the relationship between church and state was a very real issue in First Century Palestine – and it is today – and it most probably will always be a living tension. What we can learn from this Gospel Lesson lies in learning from Jesus, himself. Jesus was not concerned with politics – he was concerned with justice. He didn’t want to bring the kingdom of God into Roman-ruled Palestine. He wanted Roman-ruled Palestine to help bring in the Kingdom of God. Jesus’ vision was not just another version of political and cultural organization, supplanting the Roman state with a Jewish state, or even, 1800 years later, a United States.
Jesus weaned people away from the spirit of power and awakened them to the power of the Spirit. Jesus wanted to wake people up to the possibility that there was so much more available to them: more love, more joy, more justice, more power – through a right relationship with God and neighbor. Give to God what is God’s does not imply a separation of church and state. It is a radical mandate for a re-evaluated life and a renewed creation.
The truth is that the church, itself, is in danger of perceiving Jesus as the Pharisees did. Like the Pharisees, we still sometimes think that Jesus had some kind of hidden agenda that we should be able to co-opt for our own benefit. We’ve tried to make Jesus into a liberal or a conservative, a Marxist or a Capitalist, a Baptist or an Episcopalian, a rebel or a dreamer. But Jesus was none of these. What Jesus was and is, is the living Son of God, the Christ, the Savior – and that is a category which lies far beyond the scope of any political correctness.
It wasn’t a well-rehearsed script. It wasn’t merely for the purpose of political exposure or power. It was truly for the purpose of risky dialogue and engagement with humanity. Jesus didn’t suffer and die on the cross, didn’t conquer death and rise again, doesn’t offer us redemption and eternal life so that our pet agenda can get passed at next week’s Long-Range Planning Meeting. Jesus came and lived and struggled and loved and ministered and died and rose again to show us a way of life beyond the strictures of both institutional politics and institutional religion. That Way, that Truth, that Life, is Jesus, himself.
St. Augustine’s Annual Wreath Sale is coming to you early this year! Due to the pandemic, supply chains are affected in new ways and we need to get our orders in ASAP.
Please below you will find the wreath sizes and pricing. Please contact Eileen Clark at firstname.lastname@example.org or 914-772-0113 to place your order. You can also contact our office at 914-271-3501 and speak with Myrlin Valerio to place an order.
PLEASE SUBMIT YOUR ORDERS BY FRIDAY, OCTOBER 9th.
Orders will be available for pick up or delivery on Saturday, December 5th.
12” Plain $18 12” Decorated $20
14” Plain $20 14” Decorated $22
18” Plain $30 18 “Decorated $35
24” Plain $50 24” Decorated $55
30”Plain $65 30” Decorated $75
36” Plain $90 36” Decorated $100
12” Boxwood $25
If you prefer to fill out a paper order form, you can download it below and drop it off at our office in the Mailbox on the back door of the Parish House.
This summer our Bishops announced that all parishes in the Episcopal Diocese of New York would be invited to participate in a holy conversation about racial justice while reading Ibram X Kendi’s book How to be an Antiracist. Addressing racism, white privilege and white supremacy requires a great deal of work that we cannot do alone. The most successful efforts in dismantling injustices in our society have historically required people of faith on the front lines.
St. Augustine’s will read this book together in September (schedule below). On October 22, we are invited to join an online event with Ibram X. Kendi.
If you want to participate in St. A’s reading group, please email Mother Jenny at email@example.com.
We will gather via Zoom on September 3rd, 17th and 24th at 12 pm and 7 pm for an hour-long guided discussion. Schedule of reading is as follows:
September 3rd: Chapters 1-6
September 17th: Chapters 7-12
September 24th: Chapters 13-18
A message from our Bishop and more information about this program can be found on the Antiracism Committee website: Click Here.
Dr. Gary Stallings helped answer and respond to questions and concerns for parents as they prepare their children to return to college campuses. Dr. Stallings is a physician, medical school professor, and member of St. A’s.
Please feel free to share this with other families you think would find this useful.
Here is a list of helpful resources that were mentioned during the conversation: