PREPARING FOR SUNDAY WORSHIP Saturday, 8 August 2020 Tenth Sunday after Pentecost

Included in today's update: A Message from Father Keith, the Liturgy for Tomorrow's Worship, Birthdays in the Week Ahead, and more.


Saturday, 8 August 2020

Dear Friends:

As I stand here at my computer desk, I can look out the window facing the graveyard. Right now, I am watching two young bucks, one sporting what looks to be the beginning of what will one day be a rather impressive rack of antlers. They seem perfectly at ease, wandering among the graves, stopping every few steps to nibble on some grass or the leaves of a low-hanging branch.

Earlier this week, I must have spent fifteen minutes watching a family of red foxes - two adults, three kits - as they also enjoyed some time in the graveyard. The adults took turns serving as the guard and lookout, while the other would roll in the grass and the kits would run around, playing and having a great time. At the same time, just a few yards away, on the other side of the hedge, there were two rabbits, munching on some grass.

I was reminded of one of my favorite paintings, The Peaceable Kingdom, by Edward Hicks, a Quaker painter from Bucks County. He was quite a prolific artist, painting over 60 versions of the scene, all portraying a wide variety of animals, both predators and prey, in the company of a small rosy-cheeked child. His works were all inspired by the prophet Isaiah's (11:6-9) portrayal of the Kingdom of the Messiah:

The wolf shall dwell with the lamb, and the leopard shall lie down with the young goat, and the calf and the lion and the fattened calf together; and a little child shall lead them. The cow and the bear shall graze; their young shall lie down together; and the lion shall eat straw like the ox. The nursing child shall play over the hole of the cobra, and the weaned child shall put his hand on the adder’s den. They shall not hurt or destroy on all my holy mountain; for the earth shall be full of the knowledge of the Lord as the waters cover the sea.

This Scripture passage is usually read in Advent as the Church annually prepares to celebrate the birth of the Messiah on Christmas. But I find it comforting to contemplate this pastoral, peaceful image even now, in the height and heat of summer, particularly in light of the acrimony and angst which currently permeates our society. I wonder what it will be like when the earth is truly filled with the knowledge of the Lord, as plentiful as the waters that make up the earth's great seas, touching and defining and embracing every part of the world?

To quote an often-used Advent refrain: Come, Lord; come soon!

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.

Blessings! Peace! Grace! And love!

- Keith


O God, our times are in your hands: Look with favor, we pray, on these your servants as they begin another year. Grant that they may grow in wisdom and grace, and strengthen their trust in your goodness all the days of their life; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

August 9 … Joan Wertz

August 10 ...Ulrich Taglieber

August 11 … Karen Schoelles

August 11 … Julie Cooper

August 11 … Andi Repine

August 12 … Azaria Williams

August 13 … Collin Higgins

August 14 … Amy Robinson

August 15 … Andy Rusnak




The grace of Our Lord Jesus Christ,

the love of God,

and the communion of the Holy Spirit

be with you. Alleluia!

And also with you. Alleluia! Alleluia!


Grant to us, Lord, we pray, the spirit to think and do always those things that are right, that we, who cannot exist without you, may by you be enabled to live according to your will; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.


Gracious God: through your Fatherly goodness, make Church of the Messiah a Christian community united to serve others; enrich our life in Christ, that we might celebrate and share Christ’s love with the world; and send your Holy Spirit to give us strength and courage to proclaim the Good News of your grace through word and deed. Amen.


Genesis 37:1-4, 12-28; Romans 10:5-15; Matthew 14:22-33

PSALM 105: 1-6, 16-22,45b

Give thanks to the Lord and call upon his Name; * make known his deeds among the peoples. Sing to him, sing praises to him, * and speak of all his marvelous works. Glory in his holy Name; * let the hearts of those who seek the Lord rejoice. Search for the Lord and his strength; * continually seek his face. Remember the marvels he has done, * his wonders and the judgments of his mouth, O offspring of Abraham his servant, * O children of Jacob his chosen. Then he called for a famine in the land * and destroyed the supply of bread. He sent a man before them, * Joseph, who was sold as a slave. They bruised his feet in fetters; * his neck they put in an iron collar. Until his prediction came to pass, * the word of the Lord tested him. The king sent and released him; * the ruler of the peoples set him free. He set him as a master over his household, * as a ruler over all his possessions, To instruct his princes according to his will * and to teach his elders wisdom. Hallelujah!


I believe in God, the Father Almighty,

Creator of heaven and earth.

I believe in Jesus Christ, His only Son, our Lord.

He was conceived by the power of the Holy Spirit,

and born of the Virgin Mary.

He suffered under Pontius Pilate,

was crucified, died and was buried.

He descended to the dead.

On the third day he rose again.

He ascended into heaven,

and is seated at the right hand of the Father.

He will come again to judge the living and the dead.

I believe in the Holy Spirit,

the holy catholic Church,

the communion of Saints,

the forgiveness of sins,

the resurrection of the body,

and the life everlasting.



Response: Hear us, O God.


O God, who created all peoples in your own image, we thank you for the wonderful diversity of races and peoples who have come together in this great nation, and strengthened our culture with the many gifts, talents, perspectives and flavors they have each brought and shared. Enrich our lives by ever-widening circles of fellowship, abolish all prejudices that separate us, open our eyes to recognize, and acknowledge, and celebrate your presence in those who differ most from us, until our knowledge of your love is made perfect in our love for all your children; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.


Most merciful God, we confess that we have sinned against you in thought, word, and deed, by what we have done, and by what we have left undone. We have not loved you with our whole heart; we have not loved our neighbors as ourselves. We are truly sorry and we humbly repent. For the sake of your Son Jesus Christ, have mercy on us and forgive us; that we may delight in your will, and walk in your ways, to the glory of your Name. Amen.


Be sure to check out the weekly music and carillon recordings. Go to the Gallery tab on the parish website; select videos; there you will find hymns selected for the day, along with the ringing of Messiah's church bells. This music is presented each week by Hannah Albrecht, Sam Frenkel and friends. Thank you, Hannah and Sam - and all who contribute each week!


Each week, the text of the Sunday sermon is posted to the website. Feel free to print it out if you find that helpful. And perhaps you might also print a copy and send to someone who doesn't have computer access. This would be greatly appreciated and provide a way for these parishioners to also stay connected.


Bishop Gutierrez continues to broadcast Sunday morning Eucharist services. You can watch at 9 a.m. on YouTube or Facebook, (@Episcopal PA) and any time afterward on the Diocesan Website (


Thank you to all of you who have dropped off or sent in your pledge over the past several weeks! Your faithfulness has allowed us to stay current with payroll and bill payment. Can it really be August already? - please remember to submit this month's pledge.

Thank you!

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