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Rector's Message: Saturday, 13 February 2021

Sunday, 14 February

Last Sunday After

the Feast of the Epiphany

Included in today's update: The Rector's Message, Birthdays in the Week Ahead, Work beginning on the Parish Roof, Ash Wednesday, Shrove- Sunday-To-Go, Rector's Lenten Bible Study, Creative Angels Recipe, and Ongoing Updates


Saturday,13 February 2021

Dear Friends:


ASH WEDNESDAY: February 17th

Ash Wednesday marks the beginning of Lent, the Church's 40-day liturgical season that precedes Easter Day. Due to the continuing pandemic, this year's service must be virtual and "ash-less". Ashes are not mandatory for the commemoration of the day, always optional, and in their place you will be invited to mark the sign of the cross on your forehead, retracing the action first made by the priest at your baptism, sealing you with the Holy Spirit and marking you as "one of Christ's own forever." The service bulletin, along with the service video, will be posted on the parish website:

I know we're all becoming COVID-weary,

but don't forget the 3 W's:

  • Wear a mask.

  • Watch your distance.

  • Wash you hands.

May your week ahead be filled with health, happiness and hope!

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.

  • Lucas Barry

  • Colton Marshall

  • Paul Vollmar


Shrove Sunday Pancakes-To-Go

Now Scheduled For


Place your order today for

Youth of Messiah's

Shrove Sunday Pancakes-To-Go

Due to snow forecast from

Thursday through Sunday of this week,

we have moved the

Shrove Sunday Pancakes-To-Go event

to Sunday, February 21st!

Order ahead via our Sign-Up Genius link, or you can email or call Dave Reichley at or 267-664-2276 if you have trouble signing up! PLEASE PLACE YOUR ORDER NO LATER THAN FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 19th, so adequate supplies can be purchased and preparations made. You can pay in advance or when you pick up your order. Our pick-up day will be on Sunday, February 21st from 10:30am until 12:30pm. Just pull up to the first Parish Hall doors, give us your name, and we will deliver your packaged order to your car!

If you have already placed your order: you need not reorder. Your order will be honored for the new date.

  • If you have placed an order, but will not be able to pick up your order on the new date: contact Dave Reichley (contact information above) to request a refund or designate your payment be directed to benefit the Tree for Hope Girls School.

  • If you have not yet placed your order: please do it today!

Our Menu will feature two options:

A La Carte:

  • Pancakes (3 large pancakes, plain or chocolate chip, with single serve syrup) - $3

  • Side of Fresh Fruit (freshly cut in a separate container) - $2.

  • Side of Sausage (2 cooked sausage patties) - $1

Family Meal:

  • 10 pancakes plus syrup, large order of fruit, and 6 sausages - $15

All proceeds from the event will benefit Tree for Hope Girls School, located just outside Antigua, Guatemala. Youth and adults from Messiah have been involved in mission work in Guatemala on a number of occasions. Last January, we were introduced to this education mission, while visiting and worshipping with our companion parish, St. Alban’s Mission in Antigua. Tree for Hope, a new ministry sponsored through the Lutheran Church, provides quality education for girls and young women, many of whom would not receive an education were it not for scholarships.

We hope that you will join in with us in celebrating Shrove Sunday this year! Although we will miss sitting down for a meal with good company, we hope to join together in spirit as we enjoy a Messiah tradition at home.



The Gospel of Mark

Mark’s Gospel is the shortest of the four Gospels and known for its quick pace. Most scholars consider it to be the earliest written. In this liturgical year we have just entered, most of our Sunday Gospel readings will be drawn from Mark. Join the Rector as we take an in-depth look at this perspective on Jesus’ life, teaching, healing, suffering, death, and resurrection.

Many people find that engaging in Bible study provides a good Lenten discipline and prepares them to receive the joy of Easter more fully. The six-week course will meet on six consecutive Wednesday evenings via ZOOM, from 7:00-8:30 p.m. (Dates: Feb 24th, March 3rd, 10th, 17th, 24th, 31st.) Our textbook will be the Gospel of Mark; a copy will be provided to ensure that we are all reading the same translation, so no cost is involved. Each week, prior to our meeting, you will receive a short series of reflection questions, along with your ZOOM invitation.

Joining the class is easy!

Contact the Rector at, or 215-699-9204.


Sunday, February 28th

Join us at 10:30 on that Sunday morning as we honor Sue Phillips on her retirement and offer thank her for her 19 years of dedicated service and ministry as Messiah's Parish Administrator. In order to maintain COVID protocols, the vestry is planning a "drive-through" celebration!

  • Decorate your car, make signs, etc.

  • If you would like to add a personal touch, cards and notes are quite welcome;

  • As well as flowers or plants, gift cards, wine, etc.

SEE YOU ON THE 28th!!!!


A member of the parish with limited mobility and can no longer drive has been receiving assistance from a couple of parishioners with rides to doctor's appointments, errands, and help 1-2 times a week with minor household chores (taking out trash, etc). She has just moved into a new apartment for independent living, and needs additional help getting settled. Her new apartment is in Hatfield, twice the distance from parishioners who have been helping her. If anyone lives near Hatfield can help this parishioner settle in her new apartment (unpacking, minor furniture repair/placement, cleaning) and/or provide rides to appointments, please contact Michael Stinson at Enter "Help for Parishioner" in the subject line. Thank you.


The work to replace the roof on the Parish Hall with a standing seam metal roof began this past week. Cost for the project totals $125,000.00. Following advice from the investment committee, the vestry has unanimously endorsed a financial plan consisting of:

  • withdrawing $40,000.00 from the endowment;

  • a $50,000.00 loan from the diocese at only 2% interest for 5 years;

  • and an appeal to fund the remaining $35,00.00 from members of the congregation. Presently, we have raised $63,765.20 toward this goal! THANK YOU!! Funds raised above the stated $35K goal will ease the needs imposed by the endowment withdrawal and diocesan loan.

We are asking you and your household to prayerfully consider a financial donation to meet this important need. Work will begin soon, before any further damage is done to the interior spaces of the building.

  • If making a donation by check: Please make check payable to: Church of the Messiah; include Roof Replacement on memo line of your check.

  • You can also make your donation electronically using TitheLy: Go to the church website:; click the DONATE button; in the “TO” field, scroll down and choose: Roof Replacement.

  • If you are unable to make a donation at the current time, but wish to make a pledge for future giving, please complete and return the form enclosed in the parish mailing or notify the Church Office (

Thank you for whatever assistance you can give toward this important parish project!


End of the year financial statements were mailed out this week. Watch your mailbox.


If you currently use weekly offering envelopes for your pledge, you will again receive envelopes for the coming year. Envelopes are now available for pickup, located on a table in the hallway outside the Rector’s office. Questions: please contact the bookkeeper Sarah Patram; or the church office. Thanks!


As they have done for the past several years, William R. May Funeral Home, located on Main Street in North Wales, has provided the parish with liturgical calendars. These calendars feature the liturgical colors of the various church seasons, note Holy Days and Saints’ Days, and the readings assigned for each Sunday. The calendars are free and are available in the church office.


Check the website each weekend for the video of the Sunday service. And make it interactive by checking out the service bulletin with all the responses, lessons, and weekly updates and information. A copy of the Sunday sermon is also available.


NOTE: Barbara Stevenson continues to need recipes and craft ideas to pass along to the parish through the weekly email messages. You can send your submissions to Barbara at

Lauren Marsh lived in New Orleans while attending Tulane University. During her time there, she came to love the unique culture of that historic southern city. Perhaps nothing better captures the special qualities of the city than the Mardi Gras Carnival season, the lively weeks that precede the beginning of Lent. During that period of parades, balls and other events, King Cake is served. Lauren has submitted a recipe for this delicious pastry so you can enjoy your own King Cake on Mardi Gras, "Fat Tuesday," the day before Ash Wednesday plunges us into the somber forty days of Lent. Enjoy!

Quick Mardi Gras King Cake


  • 3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

  • 1 package (2 1/4 teaspoons) Rapid Rise yeast

  • 1 cup milk

  • 1/4 cup sugar

  • 1 teaspoon salt

  • 2 eggs

  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened, cut into 12 pieces

Cinnamon Filling

  • 2/3 cup packed light brown sugar

  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened


  • 1 cup powdered sugar

  • 1 tablespoon milk

  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla


  • Dark green, purple, and yellow or gold sugars, if desired

  • Miniature plastic baby, if desired

1. Mix 2 1/2 cups flour and yeast in mixing bowl of stand mixer, using the paddle attachment, on low for about 30 seconds.

2. Heat milk, sugar, and salt in a small saucepan over medium heat until sugar is dissolved and milk is between 120°F to 130°F.

3. With mixer on low, pour in liquids and mix until incorporated. Add eggs one at a time. Continue mixing until a shaggy dough forms. Clean off paddle and switch to dough hook. Mix in the remaining 1 cup flour a little at a time, adding more or less flour as needed to make a soft dough. Add the softened butter, a piece at a time, kneading until each piece of butter is absorbed.

4. Knead for eight minutes on low. The dough should completely clear the sides of the bowl. If it is too sticky, add additional flour 1 tablespoon at a time, mixing in thoroughly before determining if more flour is needed. If the dough seems too dry, spritz with water from a spray bottle a couple of times, mixing in thoroughly before determining if more water is needed. Every 2 minutes, stop the machine, scrape the dough off the hook, and then continue kneading.

5. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead a few times by hand to be sure it’s smooth and elastic. Form the dough into a ball. Place dough into a greased bowl. Turn once so greased surface is on top. Cover bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 1 hour.

6. While the dough is chilling, make cinnamon filling. In small bowl, combine the brown sugar and ground cinnamon. Combine butter with cinnamon mixture and mix well.

7. Roll the chilled dough into a 10 x 20 inch rectangle. Spread the filling on half of the long side of the dough. Fold the dough in half covering the filling. Pat dough down firmly so the dough will stick together. Cut dough into three long strips. Press the tops of the strips together and braid the strips. Press the ends together at the bottom. Gently stretch the braid so that it measures 20 inches again. Shape it into a circle/oval and press the edges together.

8. Transfer the ring to a parchment lined or greased baking sheet. Cover the dough with plastic wrap and let it rise until doubled, about 1 hour. While the dough is rising, preheat the oven to 350°. Bake the cake until it is golden brown, 20 – 35 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool 10 minutes on baking sheet and then place it on a cooling rack to cool completely before icing. To hide the baby in the cake, if desired, make a small slit in the bottom of the cake and put the miniature plastic baby in after the cake has cooled.

9. Icing: In a small bowl, mix powdered sugar, milk and vanilla until smooth (add additional milk if mixture is too thick or powdered sugar if too thin). Spoon icing over top of the cake. Immediately sprinkle on colored sugar, alternating between the three colors.

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