Archive for November, 2011

Update on Andy

Andy’s surgery went very well. He says is happy and comfy. He hopes to go home tomorrow evening and beat his record from last time!


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Day 4

The Simplicity of Poverty

When the brothers go through the world, let them take nothing for the journey, neither knapsack, nor purse, nor bread, nor money, nor walking stick.  Whatever house they enter, let them first say: Peace to this house.  They may eat and drink what is placed before them for as long as they stay in that house. (…) Whoever takes their cloak, let them not withhold their tunic.  Let them give to all who ask of them and whoever takes what is theirs, let them not seek to take it back.

– St. Francis of Assisi, The Earlier Rule, (XIV: How the Brothers Should go through the World), 73

Scripture Reading

Luke 18:18-23


Lord of all simplicity, so many people have made gettingn things the focus of this season of your birth.  material things are only good to the degree that they help us grow in our relationship with you.  Help us learn from the example of Francis: the less we have, the less we have to worry about and the more we can keep a focus on what is really important  — you.  Amen.

Advent Action

Can’t think of what to buy for the friend or loved one who has everything?  Instead of purchasing something, let that special person know how much he or she means to you in a card or letter.

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Today is the Feast of St. Andrew the Apostle.  Holy Eucharist will be celebrated at 12:00 p.m. (noon).


Most biographical notes on this Apostle begin “Andrew was Simon Peter’s brother,” and he is so described in the Gospels.  Indentifying Andrew as Peter’s brother makes it easy to know who he is, but it also makes it easy to overlook the fact of Andrew’s special gift to the company of Christ.  The Gospel according to John tells how Andrew, a disciple of John the Baptist, was one of two disciples who followed Jesus after John had pointed him out, saying, “Behold the Lamb of God” (John 1:29).  Andrew and the other disciple went with Jesus and stayed with him, and Andrew’s first act afterward was to find his brother and bring him to Jesus.  We might call Anddrew the first missionary in the company of disciples.

Though Andrew was not a part of the inner circle of disciples (Peter, James, and John), he is always named in the list of disciples, and appears prominently in several incidents.  Andrew and Peter were fishermen, and Mathew’s Gospel records Jesus’ calling them from their occupation, and their immediate response to his call.  Andrew was the disciple who brought the boy with the loaves and fishes to Jesus for the feeding of the multitude.

We hear little of Andrew as a prominent leader, and he seems always to be in the shadow of Peter.  Eusebius, the Church historian, records his going to Scythia, but there is no reliable information about the end of his life.  Tradition has it that he was fastened to an X-shaped cross and suffered death at the hands of angry pagans.

Andrew is the patron saint of Scotland.


Almighty God, who gave such grace to your apostle Andrew that he readily obeyed the call of your Son Jesus Christ, and brought his brother with him: Give us, who are called by your holy Word, grace to follow him without delay, and to bring those near to us in to his gracious presence; who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever.  Amen.

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Prayer Request

Andy Figueroa has his second hip surgery today. Please pray for him as well as Janis as they face another period of recovery.

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Day 3

The Humility of God in the Incarnation

The most high Father made known from heaven through His holy angel Gabriel this Word of the Father — so worthy, so holy and glorious — in the womb of the glorious Virgin Mary, from whose womb He received the flesh of our humanity and frailty.  Though He was rich, He wished, together with the most Blessed Virgin, His mother, to choose poverty in the world beyond all else.

– St. Francis of Assisi, “Later Admonition and Exhortation to the Brothers and Sisters of Penance,” 46

Scripture Reading

Philippians 2:5-8


Humble God, in your humility, you reached out to the human race in order to draw us into a communion that could not have been possible through any other means.  May Jesus be a friend who can identify with all that we go through in life, who brings us into a relationship with his Father, and who, by his humility and self-sacrificing love, shows us what it means to live human life to its fullest.  Amen.

Advent Action

Take time to reflect on the significance of what it means that God took on human flesh to share himself with us.  As you move through your day, with all of its ups and downs, remember that Christ can truly identify with all that you experience because of the humility of the Incarnation.

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Brothers and Sisters of Christ our Hope:

This past Sunday I was asked to post some suggested organisations to which you might consider donating your financial resources.  You may also consider setting aside some financial resources to help some of our young men and women go on a mission to Bangladesh this next Summer to work with Dr. Kris Prenger.  More information will be provided in the very near future as to how you can help support this missionary endeavour.

Heifer International


World Vision


Living Water International


Anglican Relief and Development Fund


Additionally, there are some local organizations you may consider assisting with your time and talents.

Target Dayton


Dayton Gospel Mission


Let us remember that we, as Christians, are working to be salt and light in our culture and throughout the world.  Our work is one of subversion to the prevailing secular culture.  We are to be radical witnesses to the love, mercy, and grace of Jesus Christ.

Advent Blessings!

Fr. Greg

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On this day, we commemorate King Kamehameha and Queen Emma.

Within a year of ascending the throne in 1855, the twenty year old King Kamehameha IV and his bride, Emma Rooke, embarked on the path of altruism and unassuming humility for which they have been revered by their people.  The year before, Honolulu, and especially its native Hawaiians, had been horribly afflicted by smallpox.  The people, accustomed to a royalty which ruled with pomp and power, were confronted instead by a king and queen who went about, “with notebook in hand,” soliciting from rich and poor the funds to build a hospital.  Queen’s Hospital, named for Emma, is now the largest civilian hospital in Hawaii.

In 1860, the king and queen petitioned the Bishop of Oxford to send missionaries to established the Anglican Church in Hawaii.  The king’s interest came through a boyhood tour of England where he had seen, in the stately beauty of Anglican liturgy, a quality that seemed attuned to the gentle beauty of the Hawaiian spirit.  England responded by sending the Rt. Rev. Thomas N. Staley and two priests.  They arrived on October 11, 1862, and the king and queen were confirmed a month later, on November 28, 1862.  They then began preparations for a cathedral and school, and the king set about to translate The Book of Common Prayer and much of the Hymnal.

Kamehameha’s life was marred by the tragic death of his four year old son and only child, in 1863.  He seemed unable to survive his sadness, and although a sermon he preached after his son’s death expresses hope and faith that is eloquent and profound.  His own death death took place only a year after his son’s, in 1864.  Emma declined to rule; instead, she committed her life to good works.  She was responsible for schools, churches, and efforts on behalf of the poor and sick.  She travelled several times to England and the Continent to raise funds, and became a favorite of Queen Victoria’s.  Archbishop Longley of Canterbury, remarked upon her visit to Lambeth: “I was struck by the cultivation of her mind…but what excited my interest most was her almost saintly piety.”

The Cathedral was completed after Emma died.  It was named St. Andrew’s in memory of the king, who died on that Saint’s day.  Among the Hawaiian people, Emma is stilled referred as “our beloved Queen.”


O Sovereign God, who raised up King Kamehameha IV and Queen Emma to be rulers in Hawaii, and inspired and enabled them to be diligent in good works for the welfare of their people and the good of your Church: Receive our thanks for their witness to the Gospel; and grant that we, with them, may attain to the crown of glory that never fades away; through Jesus Christ our Saviour and Redeemer, who with you and the Holy Spirit is alive and reigns, one God, for ever and ever.  Amen.

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