Update From Fr. Alan

Greeting all in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.

My surgery has been successful and I am now in the early stages of rehab.  As all of you know this is very painful!

I am doing PT three times a week at home through the end of this week.  After that I will continue PT at an out patient facility near my home for an additional 4 weeks.  By that time my knee should be fully functional and my mobility restored.

It is too early to tell when I will be driving again.  I have arranged for supply clergy on the 12th of January hoping I will be with you on the 19th.  If that is pushing it too much I have a priest available for that date.  Surely I will be with you for the Annual Parish Meeting on the 26th!

I want to thank all of you for your prayers and support through this difficult time.  I have received numerous cards and phone calls encouraging a quick recovery and prayers for my healing.  These are so appreiciated by Teresa and I.

I know the Vestry meeting will go well tomorrow night and you will all be in my prayers.

Please let the St. Alban’s family know I am on the mend and look forward to being with you all very soon.

God’s Peace,

Fr. Alan

Happy Thanksgiving! Oblations from the BCP

We all have so many things to be thankful for! Thanksgiving is a wonderful time to reflect on our many blessings. Around the country, families are coming together to give thanks for one another, sometimes for the first time in years.  Friendships are being cemented as people open up their houses to new neighbors for the common sort of breaking of bread that might include a turkey and some dressing, sweet potatoes, green beans, cornbread and biscuits, and pie.  For many of us, grace said before this Thanksgiving meal is one of the most humbling, unifying, and meaningful prayers of the year.

On a holiday dedicated to giving thanks, you may be inspired to offer several Thanksgivings to God.

The Book of Common Prayer has some beautiful suggestions, and here are just a few:

A General Thanksgiving, found on page 836 in the BCP

Accept, O Lord, our thanks and praise for all that you have done for us. We thank you for the splendor of the whole creation, for the beauty of this world, for the wonder of life, and for the mystery of love.

We thank you for the blessing of family and friends, and for the loving care which surrounds us on every side.

We thank you for setting us at tasks which demand our best efforts, and for leading us to accomplishments which satisfy and delight us.

We thank you also for those disappointments and failures that lead us to acknowledge our dependence on you alone.

Above all, we thank you for your Son Jesus Christ; for the truth of his Word and the example of his life; for his steadfast obedience, by which he overcame temptation; for his dying, through which he overcame death; and for his rising to life again, in which we are raised to the life of your kingdom.

Grant us the gift of your Spirit, that we may know him and make him known; and through him, at all times and in all places, may give thanks to you in all things. Amen.

A Litany of Thanksgiving, also found on page 836 in the Book of Common Prayer

Let us give thanks to God our Father for all his gifts so freely bestowed upon us.

For the beauty and wonder of your creation, in earth and sky and sea.
We thank you, Lord.

For all that is gracious in the lives of men and women, revealing the image of Christ,
We thank you, Lord.

For our daily food and drink, our homes and families, and our friends,
We thank you, Lord.

For minds to think, and hearts to love, and hands to serve,
We thank you, Lord.

For health and strength to work, and leisure to rest and play,
We thank you, Lord.

For the brave and courageous, who are patient in suffering and faithful in adversity,
We thank you, Lord.

For all valiant seekers after truth, liberty, and justice,
We thank you, Lord.

For the communion of saints, in all times and places,
We thank you, Lord.

Above all, we give you thanks for the great mercies and promises given to us in Christ Jesus our Lord;
To him be praise and glory, with you, O Father, and the Holy Spirit, now and for ever. Amen.

And one of my personal favorites, a Thanksgiving for the Natural Order, for the Beauty of the Earth, found on page 840 of the BCP:

We give you thanks, most gracious God, for the beauty of earth and sky and sea; for the richness of mountains, plains, and rivers; for the songs of birds and the loveliness of flowers. We praise you for these good gifts, and pray that we may safeguard them for our posterity. Grant that we may continue to grow in our grateful enjoyment of your abundant creation, to the honor and glory of your Name, now and for ever. Amen.

Wherever you are today, may you feel God’s loving presence!

 

Thanksgiving Lectionary Readings

Thanksgiving Daily Office

The lectionary readings for the day (or any other day) can be found here: http://legacy.esvbible.org/devotions/bcp/#top

Today we have many wonderful Thanksgiving messages.

Psalm 133 reminds us “Oh how good and pleasant it is/When brethren live together in unity!” and Psalm 134 proclaims:

“Lift up your hands to the holy place

and bless the LORD!

May the LORD bless you from Zion,

he who made heaven and earth!”

 

But on such a joyful day as Thanksgiving, we also have the reminder from Matthew that “The last will be first and the first will be last.” God loves all of us equally. Some of you may be far from your families today; some may be lonely or grieving or stuck in the airport. No matter where you are today, don’t forget that God is with you and loves you.

 

Bishop Wright Visitation/Pledge Party

On the evening of November 20, 2013, St. Alban’s Episcopal Church received a visitation from Rt. Rev. Robert Wright, Bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Atlanta.  Bishop Wright gave a presentation on stewardship at the St. Alban’s Pledge Party. 

Pictures from the event are below.  Thanks to Robin Arnold for being our photographer!

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Passport to a World of Fun

On the evening of October 20, 2013, St. Alban’s had a special night of fun and entertainment in the Parish Hall.  “Passport to a World of Fun” had five couples serving as hosts for the evening and each set of hosts served cuisine from their chosen country/region. 

Attendees were able to sample cuisines from all tables and dressed in attire typical of their country’s/region’s residents.

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Instructed Eucharist

On September 18, 2013, St. Alban’s Episcopal Church had an Instructed Eucharist.   The web site instructedeucharist.org says, “Many congregations in liturgical churches have expressed a desire for some sort of real-time worship teaching or commentary which would shed light on the various elements of the service. Such a teaching service is often known as an ‘instructed eucharist.’”  The following are pictures from the St. Alban’s Instructed Eucharist.

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Back to Church Sunday – September 15th

This is a nationwide effort to encourage people in our communities to get back to “church”. This would be a great opportunity to invite people back to St. Alban’s or invite people who need to find a church home. Pray about who you might ask or encourage.

New Choir Vestments

The St, Alban’s choir recently got new vestments. Below are some pictures of the choir members in their new attire. Photos by Robin Arnold. Thanks, Robin!

Pictured: Top row (l-r): Chris Sherlock, Dianne Hardin, Dan Marineau  Bottom Row:  (l-r):Judy Sanders.  Brian Wing, Sally Howard.
Not Pictured: Marty Atkinson, Brenda Cathey.

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