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Image Reference: The Feast of All Saints- St. Michael and All Angels

St. Philip's Episcopal Church

Easthampton, MA
Be careful:  If you come here, you will grow!
Several members of the parish community have received text messages ostensibly from me, asking you to contact them about an important matter.  PLEASE DO NOT RESPOND.  And please know that if I needed your assistance in a pastoral matter, I would contact you personally.  Please be on your guard for these fraudulent attempts to violate our community's sacred trust and bonds.  And please: if you receive such a notice, contact me to let me know.  
 
A Note from the Rev. Michael A. Bullock

Dear Folks:

One of the biblical themes that has increasingly captured my attention -- and curiosity -- comes from the beginning of the Book of Genesis.  In that great and epic story of Creation (of which there are two versions: one wet and one dry – to ask which one is “true” is to miss the entire point!) – in this story there is this proclamation from the mouth of the Lord: “Let us make man in our image, after our likeness…” [1:26].  Putting the statement’s central insight of what it means to be human into another expression goes like this: “Let us make human beings in our image, make them reflecting our nature…”. As we move into the end of October and approach All Saints Day [November 1], as we engage in the frolicking fun of Hallowe’en [All Hallows’ Eve], this descriptor from Genesis re-emerges not only to inform our costumed “Trick or Treating” but more so what All Saints Day says about us belonging to God.

For over twenty months, most of us have been wearing masks as a precaution against being infected and infecting others with the Corona virus.  I recently met with two newcomers to St. Philip’s to discuss welcoming them as new members to our parish community.  Being fully vaccinated but still maintaining the appropriate space between us, we removed our masks.  It was the first time that I had seen their full faces!  I mention this considering the reminder Genesis makes: That we are created in God’s image and likeness.  To be created in God’s “image” essentially means that we have been created with the capacity to be partners with the Creator of heaven and earth.  The significance of this partnering capacity is revealed in the next Genesis line: We are given “dominion” over creation: that is, we have the responsibility and Godly authority to be the Holy One’s stewards of creation – precisely because we are made in God’s image.  This is to say that we are made to be co-creators with God.  We have the capacity to choose to do so.  We are entrusted to oversee and develop this life, this earth as God intends.  Yet, our track record for such stewardship has fallen short.  (“Falling short” of God’s targeted mark is what “sin” actually means.).  Undoubtedly, the effects of our “missing God’s mark” results in our sense of dis-ease, what St. Augustine phrased as being “restless ‘til we rest in Thee”.   

So, as that stunningly beautiful phrase in Eucharistic Prayer A names it, “in your infinite love you made us for yourself.”  We are made for God.  We are made in God’s image.  This is an irrevocable given.  No alteration of this spiritual DNA is possible.  Yet, when it comes to being in God’s “likeness” (as Robert Frost has taught), we all “have miles and miles to go”.  In terms of Hallowe’en and our pandemic experience, we have worn masks either of our own choosing (hence, the fun and revelation of our masquerading in costume on the 31st) or for our own protection.  But what it means to be in God’s ‘likeness” is revealed and demonstrated by Jesus, the Christ of God.  In our baptisms, we have promised (in St. Paul’s words) to “put on Christ”.  Putting on the clothes of God’s Son, the flesh and blood life of God in our midst, God’s life on our own terms, requires that we grow into this Incarnate costume.  This is to say that it takes work on our parts to fill out Christ’s clothes, his Incarnate costume; and this work on our parts is not our doing alone.  Our work is response to God’s ever-present call to us to “come home”.  And this is what the celebration of All Saints is about: “Coming home” to our roots and to our truest selves and to the life we need and cannot provide for ourselves.  

In an important sense, All Saints is a matter of trading in all our masks (both protective and presumptuous) – trading them in for what we see in the risen Jesus and – day by day -- growing into his clothes, his life, and seeing ourselves as God means for us all to be: both capable and willing to be the Holy One’s partners.
Do “come home” this Sunday, as we anticipate All Saints Day and renew our Baptismal Covenant with God and with one another.

Michael+   
 
Bulletin for October 31

This Sunday we celebrate
All Saints
Click HERE for the bulletin for October 31


Our Holy Eucharist service is in-person AND  streamed online at 10:00 am.
The Prelude starts at 9:55 am.

Due to the fast-changing Covid situation, we now wear masks for worship.


We stream live on our website:
https://www.stphilipseasthampton.org/live-stream-channel
Sunday Lectionary Study is at 8:45 a.m.
USE THIS ZOOM LINK

Meeting ID: 832 0782 9066   |    Passcode: 270862

To Join by Telephone
Audio conferencing participant (joining by telephone) will need to call: +1 929 436 2866 US AND follow the verbal instructions. Enter the meeting ID you wish to join followed by the # key. If you are asked for a password, enter the password followed by the # key. You will be asked to enter your participant ID. If you do not know your participant ID, simply press the # key.
 

Please join us on Thanksgiving morning at 10 a.m. in front of the church for half an hour as we join together and sing hymns of Thanksgiving. Please bring friends and family to this wonderful time together.

 
Minutes 

of Recent Meetings


Learn what your Vestry has been discussing and deciding for the parish. Click on the the links below to read the minutes from recent meetings.


September 28, 2021

August 24, 2021

No meeting in July

June 22, 2021

May 25, 2021
Friday Movie Nights coming in November

A group of parishioners who completed the Sacred Ground program earlier this year want to keep the conversation about racial justice going.  For that reason, they are hosting two movie nights at church:
  • Friday, Nov 5: Black Wall Street Burning – A retelling of the destruction of the Greenwood District in Tulsa, Oklahoma, in 1921.  Rated R
  • Friday, Nov 19: My Name is Pauli Murray – A look at the life of this Episcopal priest and lawyer, activist and poet who influenced Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Thurgood Marshall.  Rated PG-13.
Both films will be shown in the worship space starting at 7pm.  Doors open at 6:45pm, and a brief time of conversation will follow.  These events are free and open to all parishioners and to the public, so please think about bringing a friend or two!
ST PHILIPS ANNIVERSARY
 
Since we cannot safely gather to celebrate in our usual styles of food, fellowship, presentations, etc... let us gather virtually.  Please write a very brief paragraph containing the theme - "What St. Philips means to me."  These writings can take any form which is comfortable to you - a few sentences, a poem, a lyric, a phrase, or a scripture.  What connects YOU to St Philips?  Family, friends, geography, past moments, future hopes?

I would like to collect these and then publish them on our webpage, facebook, NOW, Sunday bulletin, etc..  Please take some time to consider participating in this exercise.  My prayer is that it will be very uplifting to all.

If you may have pictures or brief videos capturing moments of St Philips' Parish life, these will be welcome also.  These can involve special events in the sanctuary, parish hall, church grounds, or at other venues connected with the many missions and ministries of the people of St Philips.

You may send your selections to 
sbailey@hcc.edu or sdbailey316@charter.net.  Thank you for your participation!

Steve Bailey


See submissions on our website.

For Members!

Our Pastoral Committee, our Tech Committee, and our Ushers could use your help!

We are always looking for volunteer drivers to help transport non-driving members to and from church, or to and from other appointments as needed.  Drivers must have a valid driver's license and be fully vaccinated.  Reach out to Bonnie Katusich at 
bkatu9@gmail.com or 413-563-5099 if you can help out.

Do you watch our streamed Sunday and other worship services on Facebook?  We could use a few more folks to learn the 'how-to's' behind the scenes for these events, as well as to participate in other tech conversations and possibilities going forward.  This is an ever changing and exciting opportunity!  Contact Deacon Jason Burns or Susan May by leaving a message on the church office phone, if you are interested in helping.  413-527-0862.

We are also in need of more Ushers to help with the flow of the service. Please contact Julie Flahive (julieflahive@gmail.com or 413-433-2300) if you are interested in learning more about assisting in this important role. 

Thank you!
The Pioneer Valley Power Pack program (PVPP), under the direction of Shelley March, provides local school children with meals on the weekends. This program has been housed at St. Philips for the last 2 years. Shelley is unable to run the program this year and a group of St. Philip’s parishioners have decided to take over the program. We are looking for volunteers to help with food pick up, packing the food on Wednesday early evenings and volunteers to deliver to the schools on Friday mornings.  We are also in need of 1 or 2 people to serve as Volunteer Coordinators. The program will begin in January 2022. If you are able to help out in any way, please contact Joe Bianca at jmbianca@charter.net.
Easthampton Community Center
2021 Thanksgiving Day Food Drive

 
Each year, The Easthampton Community Center distributes special items to those in need for Thanksgiving dinner. This year the need has become greater and we at St. Philips would like to continue with our tradition of
contributing to the effort. 

Any of the following items will help the Community Center and be greatly appreciated.
         Stuffing - Stove Top or store brand
         Instant Potatoes
         Cranberry Sauce
         Pie fillings – pumpkin, cherry, blueberry
         Cake mixes
         Bread or Brownie mixes
         Gravy
         Canned vegetables

The Community Center will also be providing Thanksgiving turkeys to those in need. Donations in support of these can be made directly to the Center via mail or their website. You can also donate any unused Stop & Shop or Big Y gift cards or store coupons. Over the last few years the Center has provided 700 – 800 turkeys for Thanksgiving.

Please remember that Easthampton does not allow the Community Center to distribute food beyond the “Use by Date”.

Office Hours
Tuesday - Thursday, 1 pm - 4:30 pm
Since not all afternoons are in person,
please call or email for an appointment. 

Phone: 413-527-0862
Email: office@stphilipseasthampton.org

Submissions for the NOW
This newsletter is published every Thursday at 10:00 am.
The deadline for submissions is 1:00 pm on Wednesdays. 
Please email them to the office by that time.
Copyright © 2021 St. Philip's Episcopal Church, All rights reserved.


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