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Rector's Message: Saturday, April 16, 2022

Sunday, 17 April

Easter Sunday


A Scripture Verse for the Week:


The Presiding Bishop’s Easter 2022 Message:

In Matthew's gospel, the resurrection of Jesus is introduced this way: "After the Sabbath, as the first day of the week was dawning, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary went to see the tomb. And suddenly there was a great earthquake, for an angel of the Lord had descended from heaven, came and rolled back the stone before the tomb until it was open."

A number of years ago, when I was serving as the bishop of North Carolina, one of our clergy, the Rev. James Melnick, offered a workshop on the Saturday before Palm Sunday on how to design, and color, and make Easter eggs.

I attended the workshop with a number of other people from around the Raleigh area and did my best to make an Easter egg. But Jim was a master at doing so. You see, Jim's family hailed from Ukraine, and he had been making those Easter eggs from childhood, and spoke of his grandmother and the family tradition that hailed from Ukraine, the making of those Easter eggs. I knew the significance of the Easter egg and Easter. I knew the stories and the truth and the teachings about the coming of new life into the world, and the connection of life emerging from an egg, and Jesus rising from the dead, bringing new life and hope into our world.

But it became clear to me, in the last month or so, in this time when the people of the Ukraine are struggling for their freedom, struggling to be what God intends for all people to be, free people, that, that egg, which is deeply embedded in the life and the consciousness of the people of Ukraine, that those Easter eggs are not just mere symbols, but reminders of the reality of the resurrection of Jesus. Think back. On Palm Sunday, Jesus entered Jerusalem, as we know, riding on a donkey. That was a deliberate act on his part.

He entered Jerusalem at about same time that Pontius Pilate, the governor of Rome, would've been entering the city from the other side, from the other gate. Pilate would've been riding a war horse, accompanied by a cavalry and infantry. He would've been riding in the streets of Jerusalem at this, the dawn of the Passover, which was a celebration of Jewish freedom. Harking back to the days of Moses and the Exodus, Pilate knew that the people would remember that God decreed freedom for all people, and that the Roman empire, which held Judea as a colony, would need to put down, by brute force, any attempt to strike a blow for their freedom.

So, Pilate entered Jerusalem on a war horse, and Jesus entered Jerusalem on a donkey. The way of humility, the way of the love that we know from the God who is love, the way of truth, the way of compassion, the way of justice, the way of God, the way of love. That way faced the way of the world, brute force, totalitarian power, injustice, bigotry, violence, embodied in Pontius Pilate, governor of Rome. And the rest of the week was a conflict between the way of the empire and the way of the kingdom or the reign of God's love.

On Friday, the empire struck. Jesus was executed on the orders of the governor of Rome. He was killed, and hope seemed to die with him. His followers fled, save those few women who stood by the cross, and save old Joseph of Arimathea and Nicodemus, who provided a tomb for the body of Jesus. The Scripture says they placed his body in the tomb and rolled the stone in front of the tomb. And there he lay dead, lifeless. There their hopes dashed on the altars of reality, their truth was crushed to earth. Their love itself seemed to die.

Then early Sunday morning, Mary Magdalene, and at least one other, and maybe a few other women, went to the tomb to anoint his body, to do the rites of burial that were customary. But when they got there, they realized that there had been an earthquake, that the earth, if you will, had been cracked open, and that the tomb was empty. The tomb was open and empty. The earth had been cracked open, and they would soon discover that Jesus had been raised from the dead. The earth cracking open, the tomb opening like an egg cracked open, and new life emerging from it.

That is the victory of life. That is the victory of love. That is the victory of God. The resurrection of Jesus is the victory that we can believe in and live by.

Many years before South Africa ever saw its new day of freedom, I heard Desmond Tutu in Columbus, Ohio. This was in the mid-1980s. This was while Nelson Mandela was still in prison, while there was no hope of deliverance. I heard him say in his speech that I believe that one day my beloved South Africa will be free for all of her children, Black, white, colored, Asian, Indian, all of her children.

I believe it, because I believe that God has a dream for South Africa, and nothing can stop God's dream. And I believe that because I believe that God raised Jesus from the dead, and nothing can stop God. Easter is the celebration of the victory of God. The earth, like an egg, has been cracked open, and Jesus has been raised alive and new, and love is victorious.

In the year 2020, in that first Easter during the pandemic, when our church buildings were closed, we broadcast an Easter service from the National Cathedral, and members of our communication team organized for, what may have been the first time in our church's history, organized an online choir.

And they sang an ancient Easter hymn. And they will sing it for you now. It sings of this victory, this victory of love of God. The strife is o'er, the battle done. The victory of life is won. The sound of triumph has begun. Alleluia, alleluia. The victory is won. Our task is to live in that victory, to live out that love until the prayer that Jesus taught us, thy kingdom come, thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven. And so this Easter, behold, the Ukrainian Easter egg, for the victory of love and life is one.

(Virtual choir sings)

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia!

The strife is o'er, the battle done,

the victory of life is won;

the song of triumph has begun.


The powers of death have done their worst,

but Christ their legions has dispersed:

let shout of holy joy outburst.


The three sad days are quickly sped,

he rises glorious from the dead:

all glory to our risen Head!


He closed the yawning gates of hell,

the bars from heaven's high portals fell;

let hymns of praise his triumph tell!


Lord! by the stripes which wounded thee,

from death's dread sting thy servants free,

that we may live and sing to thee.


Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia!


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.

· Josh Shtatman

· Margaret Harkins

· Eliza Marsh

· Walter Unangst

· Patricia Macek

· Laura Brogan

· AJ Gardner


VISIT THE WEBSITE: Here you can find a video of the Sunday service as well as the bulletin and the sermon.




Monday through Friday 9:30 to 2:30



Should you have an urgent need to contact the Rector outside of Church Office hours, please use his cell phone: 215-692-2667.



Easter Services

Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia!

Easter Day - April 17st

8:00am Holy Eucharist, Rite I – a quieter, more meditative, traditional celebration opens the day;

9:30am Holy Eucharist, Rite II – celebratory liturgy featuring festive music from the Messiah choirs and musicians;

followed by the Church School’s annual EASTER EGG HUNT

and a festive reception in the Parish Hall



Through the generosity of many parishioners, we quickly raised not only enough money to purchase a new commercial freezer for the parish kitchen, but an added bonus – an icemaker! WOW!!!! A big thank you to everyone who contributed!


Altar Flowers

If you would like to honor a loved one(s) by dedicating the altar flowers in their name, please contact the church office. There are lots of open Sundays for the spring and summer! The suggested donation is $60.



As we reopen for in-person worship and begin ramping up to pre-COVID levels of activity and participation, we are in need of volunteers in several areas. Please consider giving of your time and talents to help in these various important ministries.

  • SUNDAY MORNING VIDEO TEAM - When church services were paused due to COVID, we began live-streaming worship services and posting the videos to the church website. This has developed into an important and much relied-upon ministry, providing those unable to join us in-person to continue to worship and participate as part of our faith community. Because of its importance, we will be continuing to broadcast and post our worship gatherings. Training is provided - so don’t be afraid, or let technology scare you! It's just a camera! If willing to be a part of this vital ministry, contact the Rector:

  • USHER CHAIR & USHERS – The Usher Chair recruits, trains and ensures that ushers are assigned for Sunday and special services. Ushers are responsible for greeting worshippers and distributing bulletins, counting and reporting attendance, collecting offerings, and assisting with traffic flow at Communion. We are hoping to assemble a corps of volunteers large enough to allow for a monthly rotation. And ladies, please remember: This job isn’t just for men!

  • LECTORS & CHALICE BEARERS – Volunteers are needed for both the 8:00am and 9:30 to read the lessons and Prayers of the People, as well as administering the chalice at the time of Communion. Willing to serve? Questions? Speak with Mercer Sisson:


Thanks to the wonders of modern technology and the hard work of several parishioners, we are able to offer a variety of ways to participate in Sunday services:

  • IN-PERSON – 8:00 and 9:30am

  • LIVE-STREAMED - the 9:30 service will be broadcast on YouTube – follow the link posted on the church website (

  • WEBSITE – at the close of the service, a video will be posted to the parish website ( for viewing at a time convenient for you



We Continue to Collect & Deliver Non-Perishable Items

As you do your weekly shopping, please pick up some non-perishable food items, toiletries and cleaning supplies. These donations can be left on the back pew of the church or left outside the Rector’s office door. These will then be delivered to Manna to stock their shelves for distribution to meet clients’ needs.



**You can also help by donating to Episcopal Relief and Development. You can take a flyer from the Narthex and mail your payment with the coupon or contribute online at

**Another way to help: Ukraine Aid Donation Collection: A collection for aid to Ukraine has been set up through the Ukrainian Catholic Church of Lansdale. The collections will take place during the two upcoming weekends (March 11-13 and 18-20), and the goods will be shipped overseas through the Ukrainian Relief Committee (out of Philadelphia).

Presentation of Our Lord Ukrainian Catholic Church

1564 Allentown Road, Lansdale, PA 19446


Our first round of donations has already been picked up. Please continue to donate!!


Church School is back in person!! Please meet us upstairs in the Parish Hall at 9:30!

There will be no church school on Easter Sunday.


Please take note of our updates schedule of events for teens!

You will find a variety of events, focused on both fun and service, as well as within the parish and outside in the larger community!

Click Here to view the schedule!


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

I think you know that when I visit my cousin, Alyson, in Virginia, that I usually come home with a new recipe that she has discovered! My last trip was no different! She shared Toffee Butter Icebox Cookies with me. Secretly, every time we had tea or coffee, I had at least two (or more) of these! They are addictive!



Toffee Butter Icebox Cookies

1 cup butter, softened

1 cup sugar

1 tsp vanilla extract

1 egg, room temperature

2 1/2 cup all purpose flour

1 cup Heath toffee bits (1/4 cup more?)

Cream butter and sugar together. Add on the egg and the extract and mix until well combined. Stir in flour, mixing until fully incorporated. If dough appears too dry, add a tsp of water at a time until it comes together. Fold in Heath toffee bits. Divide dough in half and place on top of a sheet of plastic wrap. Form the dough into a log about 6 inches long and 1.5 inches in diameter. Wrap each log with the plastic wrap and refrigerate dough rolls for 1 - 2 hours until nice and firm. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line baking sheet with parchment paper. Remove plastic wrap from rolls and cut into 1/4 inch slices. Place slices 2 inches apart on the cookie sheet. Bake for 8 minutes or until lightly browned.

48 cookies

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