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THE RECTOR'S MESSAGE Wednesday, 5 August 2020

Included in today's update: A Message from Father Keith, New Vestry Members, Property Upgrades, Forward Day By Day, Recipes Needed, a few reminders and a Prayer & Psalm for the Week


Wednesday, 5 August 2020

Dear Friends:

In the Book of Proverbs (12:18), we read:

Rash words are like sword thrusts, but the tongue of the wise brings healing.

And in 23:16, it says:

My soul will rejoice when your lips speak what is right.

I think that is the Bible's version of the old adage; "Think before your speak." It's sage advice. And all of us have rued the day when we didn't follow that advice. Engaging our mouth before engaging our brain is, at the least, embarrassing, and at the most, dangerous and destructive.

Awhile ago, I ran across something that I find helpful in remembering this advice . . .

Before you speak, ask yourself:

T - Is it true?

H - Is it helpful?

I - Is it inspiring?

N - Is it necessary?

K - Is it kind?

In the name of our Savior Jesus Christ,

and our God who wants only health and wholeness for his children,

I send you blessings, peace and grace in these uncertain, confusing and anxious times.

- Keith


One of Messiah's parishioners has undertaken a new ministry of providing fresh corn on the cob from a farm market to Manna on Main Street for distribution to clients, along with using it in their meal program. Twice each week - on Mondays and Thursdays - the corn is brought here to Messiah, then later in the day I deliver it to Manna. They are delighted to receive it, allowing them to supplement the canned and non-perishable goods they normally give out.

This has gotten me thinking . . . At this time of year, with so much fresh vegetables and fruit available at quite reasonable prices, why don't we make it a Messiah mission to provide fresh produce to those in need within our community? Too many zucchini or tomatoes in your garden? Bring them to the church. See a good deal on fresh green beans or cucumbers or lettuce? Pick up an extra pound or two and bring them to the church. These will be added to the donation and delivered each Monday and Thursday afternoon.


Mercer Sisson has accepted the invitation to serve a three-year term on the vestry. He joins Tim Beaver, Jennifer Marsh and Jon Marshall as the new class of parishioners filling this important ministry for the upcoming years, Thank you to all of you for your willingness to serve!


The next time you are on the church campus, drive slowly past the door facing Dekalb Pike

and around the right-hand curve that leads past the handicapped ramp and entrance. You

won't want to miss the new landscaping! What a wonderful improvement and highlight to enhance the beauty of the church building!

The new sidewalk leading from the parking lot to the church has been completed,

eliminating the tripping hazard that previously existed. And soon, the new pole lamps will

be installed along that walkway.

You will also notice new traffic signs posted to direct traffic around the campus and

parking lot.

Thank you, Marv Walters, property chair, and our church sexton, Mike Linn, for making these upgrades happen.

And many thanks to Tina Madison for filling the various pots located around the church and parish hall buildings with new plants and summer flowers.


The new Forward devotional booklets for the months of August, September and October are here! If you are one of the many parishioners who rely on this booklet of short daily devotions to enhance your spiritual and prayer life, they are available for pick-up her in the church office. If you are not able to come into the office, give us a call (215-699-9204) or send an email ( and we will gladly put one in the mail to you.



News reports have carried several stories about how, with restaurants being closed or reduced to carry-out only, and with more time available to many of us, lots of us have been cooking meals at home or (re)discovering the joys of baking. I have even heard that the country has baked ourselves into a shortage of flour, sugar and other baking needs! And the empty grocery shelves and rationing bears this out.

I'm sure lots of old favorites and comfort foods have been prepared in most of our homes, as well as some experimenting with new recipes and new techniques you have long wanted to try your hand at. That got Barbara Stevenson and me thinking: What about collecting all those old and new recipes into a Messiah edition of a "Quarantine CookBook"?

We would love to include at least one recipe from every Messiah household! Send your recipes to either: Barbara Stevenson -; or to me - We will then work to organize your submissions, and make the cookbook available to all of you.


Videos of Sunday worship services will continue to be posted to the parish website for the duration of the suspension of church services. Each Saturday, you will receive the psalm and words of the responses and other communal parts of the service, allowing you to fully participate and interact in the worship service.

So get that second cup of coffee, still in your pajamas and bathrobe, and gather together

in front of the computer or iPad or other other device . . . Then join with me and other members of Messiah as we worship together virtually, until we can once again worship together in person.


With all the acrimony that is going on within our country, this prayer for the nation "In Times of Conflict" seems especially appropriate in these days of uncertainty, confusion, distrust, division and anxiety.

O God, you have bound us together in a common life. Help us, in the midst of our struggles for justice and truth, to confront one another without hatred or bitterness, and to work together with mutual forbearance and respect; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

from The Book of Common Prayer, page 824


Happy are they who have not walked in the counsel of the wicked; *

nor lingered in the way of sinners, nor sat in the seats of the scornful!

Their delight is in the law of the Lord, *

and they meditate on the law day and night.

They are like trees planted by streams of water,

bearing fruit in due season, with leaves that do not wither; *

everything they do shall prosper.

It is not so with the wicked; *

they are like chaff which the wind blows away.

Therefore the wicked shall not stand upright when judgment comes, *

nor the sinner in the council of the righteous.

For the Lord knows the way of the righteous, *

but the way of the wicked is doomed.

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