A Sermon for Trinity Sunday: We “acknowledge the glory of the eternal Trinity and worship the Unity” by celebrating those who march today for love, justice, compassion and resistance.
Sunday, April 30
We are thrilled to welcome anti-racist activist and writer Tim Wise to All Saints once again — this time talking about race in America in the context of our new presidential administration and exploring the ways white privilege and white fragility shape our national and cultural narrative and inform the rise in white nationalist rhetoric.
All Saints will celebrate Earth Day on the lawn on Sunday, April 23. This event has added importance this year because the Church and the Climate Change Task Force, through the passage of a vestry resolution, committed to efforts to go carbon-neutral, and to encourage and assist with the All Saints Community becoming carbon-neutral as well. The first step in that effort is nearly complete with the conversion of all Church lighting to efficient LEDs, partially using a Pasadena Water and Power rebate of close to $47,000.
On this “hinge day” in Holy Week — after Jesus is laid in the tomb on Good Friday and before the first fire of Easter is kindled for the Great Vigil — this teaching from Bishop Mary Glasspool offers a powerful reflection on what the “he descended into hell” part of the Creed has to say on this Holy Saturday about our mission as the Church the other 364 days of the year. Shared in gratitude and with her permission.
Living a both/and life in an either/or world
by Susan Russell
“No good deed goes unpunished” is an old axiom that comes to my mind every year when we hear the gospel story that begins our readings for Holy Week – the story of Mary’s extravagant outpouring of precious perfume as a gift to Jesus — a gift that earned her a tongue lashing from Judas in John’s account of a story told in three out of four gospels. Mark says, “They were infuriated with her.” Matthew says, “They murmured against her.” No matter who told the story, this part was consistent: Mary’s, best offering was judged and rejected by those surrounding Jesus who thought she should have made a different choice.
And then Jesus intervened.
Do you have any idea what our brand is?
Levi. Coca-Cola. Ford
These are a few of the brands that built the United States. Each one of them was established with its basic product before 1925. Each one is still totally recognizable ninety-two years later. The term “brand” originally derived from the stamping or marking of cattle or sheep for identification purposes.
Believe me, I have no desire to be visibly stamped or marked like sheep. However, I’m painfully aware that I have both a brand and have been branded as a follower of Jesus and as a child of the resurrection.
“Grace transforms our failings full of dread into abundant, endless comfort … our failings full of shame into a noble, glorious rising … our dying full of sorrow into holy, blissful life. …. Just as our contrariness here on earth brings us pain, shame and sorrow, so grace brings us surpassing comfort, glory, and bliss in heaven … And that shall be a property of blessed love, that we shall know in God, which we might never have known without first experiencing woe.” – Julian of Norwich
“Our bones are dry, our hope is gone, and we are doomed.”
These words spoken by the people of Israel in the prophet Ezekiel’s vision
could seamlessly substitute many a news headlines today.
Each day brings some frightening new executive order, some threat to democracy, some horrendous defacement of human dignity, appalling degradation of the earth.
Reflecting on today’s lessons, reminded me of the story of two horses, and of something a colleague once wrote. “From a distance, each horse looks like any other horse. But if you stop you will notice something quite amazing…. Looking into the eyes of one horse will disclose that it is blind. The owner chose not to have the blind horse put down, and made a good home for him. However, if you stand nearby and listen, you will hear the sound of a bell. If one looks around for the source of the sound, one will see that it comes from a smaller horse in the field. Attached to that horse’s halter is a small bell, which lets the blind horse know where the smaller horse is – so the blind horse can follow.
Nearly ten years have gone by since mother Teresa passed away. Today I want to share with you one of her beautiful writings. May your heart be filled knowing that our creator thirsts for you and loves you through and through. – Jim Loduha
I Thirst For You, by Mother Teresa
I know you through and through – I know everything about you. The very hairs of your head I have numbered. Nothing in your life in unimportant to me, I have followed you through the years, and I have always loved you – even in your wanderings.
For many, Lent is an opportunity to fast, to completely stop or do less of that “thing” that we know it is hard for us to stay away from. In doing so, we do some kind of penance and aim to be more self-reflective about our behavior in the recent past (usually since the last season of Lent).