Dwelling in the Word with an Agape Meal: From Spiritual Milk to Living Water.

Morning Prayer and Agape Meal

When: Sunday May 31st at 9:30 a.m.

Where: Your table and your phone and or computer or smart phone.

Who: Your family and others in the online CHT community

What you need: time, space, food to eat

On Sunday, to deepen our celebration of the major Feast Day of Pentecost, we will hold an online Agape meal as part of our Morning Prayer gathering. Agape is the Greek word to describe the deepest kind of spiritual love. An Agape meal is a “love feast” that brings us together in one community gathered in the Holy Spirit.

This custom originated in gatherings of the early church after Pentecost. According to various historians, the Early Church met in homes for a common meal. After the meal (or sometimes before), the baptized Christians would withdraw from the rest of the meal’s attendees to celebrate the Lord’s Supper in private. Agape meals lost popularity around the 6th century, but were resuscitated in the early 18th century by Moravians and Methodists. An Agape Feast in included in our ­Book of Occasional Services and is most typically done on Maundy Thursday.

An Agape meal does not replace Holy Eucharist, but it serves as a unique fellowship meal for us on this significant Feast Day of Pentecost. Customarily, we would all be around tables singing hymns, hearing God’s Word, and offering prayers. Our liturgy this Sunday is different, as most all things are in these COVID days, as we gather at our own tables and come together digitally.

The most important aspect of the Agape meal doesn’t change, however, and that is to be aware of the presence of the Holy Spirit that connects us all to each other and to our one God. 

Time to say good bye…

We are very sad to see some precious and valued friends leaving Holy Trinity over the last couple of months.  However, we wish them well and send much love and many blessings along with them as they continue on their life journeys!

Mike FazioMike Fazio, who has retired after 15 years as organist at Holy Trinity. He had planned to depart after the Easter Sunday service but was prevented from doing so after the service was cancelled due to the coronavirus outbreak.

Warden Steve Horst writes this tribute: here

 

The Rev. Pat Jackson’s last Sunday as deacon at Holy Trinity was May 3, when she ledDeacon Pat
prayers and read the gospel on Facebook Live and Zoom. Deacon Pat had been serving at Holy Trinity since 2011, far longer than the usual three-year stint in our diocese. Under three rectors (four if you count both Mary Barnett and Mary Anne Osborn as a team), Deacon Pat has visited the sick and shut-ins in our parish. She has also led Bible study and started a prayer group that will continue meeting after her departure.

In bidding Deacon Pat farewell on behalf of a grateful parish, the Rev. Mary called her a “prayer warrior” and said “we would not be who we are without her.” She added, “We go with her as she goes out to bless the world in new and exciting ways.” The Rev. Mary promised, “We will celebrate her at a time to come.”

Rev. Mary Anne OsbornThe Rev. Mary Anne Osborn will be leaving us after the June 7 Sunday service. Since arriving in October, she has been serving in a part-time supervisory role during the period when the Rev. Mary Barnett was a transitional curate awaiting ordination to the priesthood. The Rev. Mary was ordained a priest on March 25. With Mary Anne’s departure, the Rev. Mary will assume the role of missional priest in charge. An offsite supervisor from the diocese will be available to provide advice.

In a letter this week to the parish, the Rev. Mary Anne wrote that “it’s important for Rev. Mary to step into the role as the singular priest-in-charge.” She added, “Because of COVID, I probably won’t get to see you in person, which truly grieves me. However, I will be back for a festive celebration of this wonderful community when Mary is able to preside at in-person Eucharist with as many of you as possible. I look forward to that joyful day!” So do we!

A Living House

image.png
A few good words from our friend George Black, the South Central (New Haven) regional missionary.
C.S. Lewis once said “Imagine yourself as a living house. God comes in to rebuild that house. At first, perhaps, you can understand what He is doing. He is getting the drains right and stopping the leaks in the roof and so on; you knew that those jobs needed doing and so you are not surprised. But presently He starts knocking the house about in a way that hurts abominably and does not seem to make any sense. What on earth is He up to? The explanation is that He is building quite a different house from the one you thought of – throwing out a new wing here, putting on an extra floor there, running up towers, making courtyards. You thought you were being made into a decent little cottage: but He is building a palace. He intends to come and live in it Himself.”
I heard this quote in a sermon recently and it rocked me to my core. I know that Lewis is talking about the individual here, the singular person who God is transforming from the inside out and that is indeed important, but I cannot help but see a call for The Church as a unity, in all her splendor. What was the thing we thought God was building in us, as the united Body of Christ? What was the direction we were going in before the world changed a few months ago? What is God building now, and can we let go of what WAS happening, what we wanted to happen, so that we can be present to what God is doing NOW? Are we willing to let go of the cottage so that God can make us, The Church, into the palace we are meant to be? I think God is making something great right now. It is what God does. God creates. God makes.
Are we ready to be apart of what God is making?
In Christ,
George
In the words of our Gospel this week:  “in my Father’s house there are many mansions.” May we allow ourselves to be transformed anew into a living house. –  Rev. Mary