Remembering Our Story: St. Bart’s Day Festival

As we progress further into Advent and draw closer to Christmas, my mind is drawn to what God has done in us over the past year. My anticipation of the return of Christ is encouraged by the way you all have engaged in God’s mission here at St. Bartholomew’s. And at the top of my mind is our story of “becoming St. Bartholomew’s” in 2018. 

A key part of our becoming St. Bartholomew’s was our St. Bart’s Day Festival held on September 9th. Our Bishop Philip Jones presided over our service to dedicate us as our own church.  He prayed for us as a people, for Chris and me, your clergy, and for God’s vision to be fulfilled in our mission and ministry. After the service we celebrated with a feast in the courtyard - it was a tremendous time of celebration and joy. That day the reality hit me that what God is doing in our midst at St. Bartholomew’s is beyond us, our efforts, our ability to keep up. And yet God delights in calling us to partner with him to participate in his mission. I hope you have felt that joy and delight as you’ve engaged in God’s mission at St. Bart’s. 

As the year draws to a close and you grow in your anticipation of Christ’s return and the celebration of his birth, please remember St. Bartholomew’s - where we’ve come from, where we’ve been, and where God is taking us in 2019 and beyond. 

On mission with you -

Jay+ 

Remembering Our Story - Becoming St. Bartholomew's

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As the calendar year draws to a close and we kick off the season of Advent and a whole new liturgical year, my mind is drawn to what God has done in us over the past year. My anticipation of the return of Christ is encouraged by the way you all have engaged in God’s mission here at St. Bartholomew’s. And at the top of my mind is our story of “becoming St. Bartholomew’s” in 2017. 

On July 1 we set off as our own organization, out from the cover and direct care of our sending church All Saints Dallas. One consequence of this move was to open a checking account so we could conduct the day to day mission, ministry, and business of the church. That bank account started with $0.00. But, as we began to talk about raising Seed Money, operating cash that could give us 2-3 months of funds, you all stepped up and responded in courage and faithfulness. And it’s in that courage and faithfulness that we’ve operated and lived over the past 5 months as you’ve continued to tithe faithfully. 

As the year draws to a close and you grow in your anticipation of Christ’s return and the celebration of his birth, please remember St. Bartholomew’s - where we’ve come from, where we’ve been, and where God is taking us in 2019 and beyond. 

On the Journey with You -

Jay+ 

Instructed Eucharist

This Sunday we’ll celebrate an Instructed Eucharist. We’ll have our customary worship service, but Chris and I will take some time to explain the various portions of the service, the signs and symbols imbued with meaning that narrate and inform our worship. A great Sunday to bring a friend, this Sunday is a key part of our formation as Anglicans because we are a people who gather around Word and Sacrament each week to confess our sins, sing God’s praises, proclaim the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ, feast on his Body and Blood at the Table, and are sent out into the world on mission for our king and God. See you Sunday! 


Jay +

Finishing Where We Started

This Sunday begins our final arc of the Liturgical Year as we finish where we started. We began this year in Advent (December 3, 2017 to be exact)  in Mark 13. There we found Jesus had triumphantly entered Jerusalem, cleansed the temple of the pretenders that plagued it, and was teaching in the temple about the destruction that would come upon it and the coming of the Son of Man at the end of the age. The lesson was “be ready.” 

This week we come upon Jesus as he’s teaching in the temple about the folly of the Pharisees and their desire for recognition in light of the self-giving of a widow who offers all she has for the Lord her God. 

You may have noticed that most of our Gospel lessons this year have been in Mark. That’s because we’re on a three-year cycle of readings that follows this pattern: Year A - Matthew, Year B - Mark, Year C - Luke, with a healthy portion of John’s gospel mixed in the high holy days and various seasons of the year. So when Advent begins, we’ll start a new liturgical year with a new gospel as our focus, that of Luke. But the themes of Advent won’t change dramatically. We’ll begin at the end and work our way towards the birth of Christ where the overarching lesson remains “be ready”.  


Jay+

Where does our liturgy come from?

Many of you have expressed interest in learning more about the Book of Common Prayer, but if you've ever picked up a prayer book, you probably know that it is not the easiest book to navigate. All those pages and all that tiny print can feel intimidating and confusing. I know that was true for me. When I first picked up a prayer book, I didn't really know what I was doing, and I didn't really know where to begin. But once someone showed me and explained to me the why and the how of the prayer book, it began to deeply enrich my times of prayer and scriptural devotion.

We hope that we can do the same for you. Starting Sunday, November 4 we will spend three weeks discussing what the prayer book is and how you can use it in your daily devotions. So if you have been curious about where our liturgy comes from or have wondered what the Daily Office is and how to do it, please make plans to join us at 4pm on November 4 in the parish hall.

Christopher+ Myers

What Do You Want?

In this Sunday’s Gospel, Jesus, after being prodded by James and John, asks them “what do you want me to do for you?” (Mark 10:25-35) Can you imagine if Jesus asked you that question? What would your answer be? Sure we could throw out any wild idea similar to the Sons of Zebedee - “grant us to sit one at your right hand and one at your left” - (at least they were honest, right?) But imagine if James and John answered differently. What if they answered with something a little more in line with Jesus’ trajectory and his vision for the kingdom of God? He would soon tell them if they want to be first, they must be servant of all, which seems a bit at odds with their request. 

What if we knew what we wanted? What if we had been steeped in God’s story, attentive to his work in our lives in the past and present, and possessed a Spirit-inspired anticipation of what he might be doing in the future? That kind of clarity takes time and effort, listening and prayer. It’s more like farming than going to the store for produce. And, at our Discerning Your Call Retreat, we will begin that work of moving towards clarity. 

God is calling each of us to fulfill a role that no one else can. During this transformational time you’ll discover how God has worked in your past to discern how he may be leading you in the future. And when you come to that moment of asking Jesus what you want, you can do so with confidence and clarity. 

RSVP and Details Here

Jay+

Happy Independence Day : We Are St. Bartholomew’s

Our first week as St. Bartholomew’s has gone off with a bang. There were even fireworks last night! Last Sunday July 1, we marked our first Sunday as St. Bartholomew’s. If you were there for church you saw new signs, a new bulletin, and experienced the beginning of a new season as a new people. I’m full of expectation at what God will do in us in this new season.  

 

I hope you were able to celebrate Independence Day with friends and family. I’m always quick to forget all God has provided for us in our nation. We have been blessed so greatly! And, as a country, we find ourselves at a particularly difficult moment politically and socially. In these days following July 4th, pray for our nation. God has given his Church a priestly vocation of intercession - we exercise this each Sunday in the prayers of the people. Join me in praying the Collects below for our nation.

 

Collect for Independence Day

Lord God Almighty, in whose Name the founders of this country won liberty for themselves and for us, and lit the torch of freedom for nations then unborn: Grant that we and all the people of this land may have grace to maintain our liberties in righteousness and peace; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

 

Collect for the Nation

Lord God Almighty, you have made all the peoples of the earth for your glory, to serve you in freedom and in peace: Give to the people of our country a zeal for justice and the strength of forbearance, that we may use our liberty in accordance with your gracious will; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.


- Jay+

Summer is Here!

Believe it or not, summer is here! Your kids or grandkids (or friend’s kids) are out of school, running rampant all over the neighborhood, and our relaxed rhythm at St. Bartholomew’s is in full swing.

 

Sundays will be, as always, devoted to worshiping the living God. But we’ll also be following the establishment of Israel’s monarchy in 1 and 2 Samuel. In these coming weeks we’ll see how Israel became a people and gain insight for our own lives and to see our own process of becoming St. Bartholomew’s.

 

By now hopefully you’ve signed up for a Dinners for 9 group. If you’re a recent newcomer, since March or so, we have a great Newcomer’s Night coming up on June 18. And Wednesday June 20, we’ll have our first Summer Worship Night where we’ll worship, hear some teaching, and pray, as God makes us ready to become St. Bartholomew’s.

 

See you Sunday!

- Jay+