Hi there, everyone!
Thursday, January 17th is the White Elephant at Holy Trinity, SSM (352 Northern Rd.); 10:30am-1pm.
The Week of Prayer for Christian Unity runs January 18th until January 25th – which is actually eight days if you’re particular about those things 🙂 Why those dates? In the northern hemisphere, this event is traditionally held between the Feast of the Confession of Saint Peter (the 18th) and the Feast of the Conversion of Saint Paul (the 25th). This is a worldwide ecumenical event and this year’s theme of justice comes to us from Indonesia…”Justice, and only justice, you shall pursue.” (Deut.16:18-20) According to their website, “The 2019 theme calls us to move from shared prayer to shared action. Drawing on the traditional values of Bhineka Tunggal Ika (Unity in Diversity) and gotong royong (living in solidarity and by collaboration), Indonesian Christians invite us to be a united witness, and an agent of Christ’s healing grace in a broken world, by making specific commitments to justice, equality, and unity.” If you’d like to find out more, here is their website: https://www.weekofprayer.ca
Sunday, January 20th at 2pm…World Religion Day Celebration at Central United Church, SSM (160 Spring St.)
Next Sunday, January 27th is An Ecumenical Service of Word & Prayer for Christian Unity, St. Andrew’s United Church, SSM (712 Wellington St. E); 2pm. Poster is attached for those able to view it.
Call to Action! The Coldest Night walk to raise money and awareness about the issue of homelessness is quickly approaching – Saturday, Feb.23rd. Our National Youth project addresses this exact issue so it would be great if we could show our support by getting as many people involved as possible. This isn’t just about helping those who actually live on our streets. There are many people in our communities who rely on the foodbank to feed their families and make tough choices each month about which bills to pay and which bills can wait. The number of people living in the state of “precarious homelessness” is on the rise. Please consider putting in a team from your congregation or joining one of the other teams from our deanery. Don’t have a walk scheduled in your town? How about holding an event in your church hall or other suitable location…You can serve hot beverages and a few goodies, put out a donation jar and information posters. Every time we reach out to our communities, showing them that we are living the gospel, we plant seeds…Here is their website for more information: https://cnoy.org/home Also, this Canadian definition of homelessness is a very interesting read… https://www.homelesshub.ca/sites/default/files/COHhomelessdefinition.pdf
For Your Devotions:
Monday, January 14th is the memorial of Hilary, Bishop of Poitiers, who died in 367. This is actually transferred from yesterday – not much takes precedence over our usual feast of the Lord Jesus Christ each Sunday. Hilary started life as a pagan but, through reading the Scriptures, was converted to Christianity. He was married by this point but was elected as bishop anyway. Hilary defended the Church against the heresy of Arianism – which actually was winning out over orthodoxy for a while. Arianism is the belief that Jesus was begotten by God the Father at a point in time, a creature distinct from the Father and therefore subordinate to him, although also a God. It was a bumpy road defending the faith…To read more: https://catholicexchange.com/st-hilary-of-poitiers
Tuesday, January 15th is the commemoration of Richard Meux Benson, the founder of the Society of St. John the Evangelist. He died in 1915. Even as a young child, Richard leaned toward austerity. His governess found him sleeping on the floor and, when she put him into bed, he complained that he wouldn’t be able to learn hardness if he slept in a comfy bed. Richard was a prayerful and devout priest. He wanted to go to India with a vision of “a body of men gathered together, whose life of what the world would call self-denial and poverty should be cheered with a greater joy than the world can ever give, by the sympathy of kindred hearts and the spiritual strength of abundant means of grace.” His bishop, however, did not want to lose such a wonderful priest and told Richard to stay…the rest is history as they say. To read more: http://anglicanhistory.org/bios/rmbenson.html
Thursday, January 17th is the memorial of Antony, Abbot in Egypt, who died in 356. Antony chose to give away all of his money, property, and possessions and live the life of a hermit in the Egyptian desert. News of such a devout Christian spread and people began to travel to see him to get his spiritual guidance. Why travel? Why not stay with such a great Christian? Many decided to stay and Antony became the “Abbot” of a group of men dedicated to poverty and hard work. They supported themselves with their labour and raised money for the sole purpose of giving it to those in need. If you’d like to know more… http://justus.anglican.org/resources/bio/77.html
Friday, January 18th is the Holy Day of The Confession of St. Peter the Apostle. Though Peter is portrayed in the Gospels as being oftentimes rash and hasty as well as a little “slow on the uptake,” Peter was recognized by the early church as the leader of the apostles and his love for Jesus clearly runs deep. At the Britannica website it says, “It was Peter who possessed remarkable insight and displayed his depth of faith in the confession of Christ as the Son of God (Matthew 16:15–18; Mark 8:29; Luke 9:20), and it was Peter who rebuked, and in turn was rebuked by, Jesus when the Master prophesied that he would suffer and die (Mark 8:32, 33).” To read more: https://www.britannica.com/biography/Saint-Peter-the-Apostle