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Christ Church East Norwalk eNews
The Eleventh Sunday after Pentecost

Almighty God, you have given your only Son to be for us a sacrifice for sin, and also an example of godly life: Give us grace to receive thankfully the fruits of his redeeming work, and to follow daily in the blessed steps of his most holy life; through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

A message from the Senior Warden:
 When this year began, as when all years begin, I am sure we were all hopeful for the new year and our chance to fulfill newly made goals. I was thinking about my family and how grateful I was for them, and also how this would be the end of an era of raising children for me with my youngest son going into his Senior year of college. I was also facing the last of the things that I knew were ending. Like watching sports with my boys at the front doing their best for the team. It is funny how just knowing it was coming to an end changed my perspective….it made me grateful for all the good things I knew we had.

Then, Covid-19 shortened every aspect of our lives even more. It took away those “lasts” for a lot of us. Seniors graduated without ceremony. Children were taken out of school and lost all their activities. People lost their jobs, some lost homes, and many lost family members. Wow, this is just not what I expected.

In our country, most of us are used to having the good life. We are not used to anyone telling us what to do and what not to do. But these are changing times. Our churches have been shuttered, our schools will only open with on-line-learning and limited classes. Many of our jobs will be lost forever and our incomes will adjust down in a county that offers a lot, but only for those who can pay. This is just something we haven’t seen before. Unprecedented in our lifetime.

So, we continue to mask up, wash our hands, and socially distance to keep ourselves and others safe. It doesn’t matter if you do this because you are selfish or because you are magnanimous. It doesn’t matter because, in the end, we have to do it to shorten the life of the virus. It is the only way. But, I want to remind you that in the midst of all of this we are still a church family. We can still make a difference in the world by giving of ourselves and showing grace and tolerance toward one another. We need to stand together so we can get through this.

I am very grateful that our church has reopened, even with the restrictions. I have missed everyone, and I have missed being in the house of the Lord. I have missed feeling his presence in the readings when we come together, and in the grace, I feel from my church family. It is the one place where I feel I can come and talk to God clearly without distraction, and it is the one thing I would encourage you all not to give up. Good discipleship comes from practicing the ways of our Lord in all circumstances. Even when things are not going your way….especially when things are not going your way. We must trust in God for he is good all the time and he will see us through. Faith, Hope and Love must live on through all of us.

God Bless you all. The Lord make his face shine upon thee, and be gracious unto thee: The Lord lift up his countenance upon thee and give thee peace. (Numbers 6:25-26)
 
See you this Sunday. Jamie


 
From Fr Montgomery
On Sunday, August 9,16,23 and 30, we will continue with our 9 am service which will be the Order of Morning Prayer offered by Lay Leaders. Jamie Kircher (our faithful Senior Warden) and Joyce Generoso (a faithful member of the Vestry and leader in many ways) will be taking turns leading our worship.
Many, many churches offer worship on Sunday mornings digitally. I encourage you to visit them virtually. I give you a few links here to explore! Please take notes and give suggestions on things we might do differently here at Christ Church!
1) St. Mary the Virgin, Times Square Livestream 11 am Sunday: https://www.facebook.com/stmvnyc/

2) Canterbury Cathedral Livestream Sunday 12Noon: https://www.canterbury-cathedral.org/#eucharist

3) Christ Church, Greenwich, Sunday Livestream 10 am https://christchurchgreenwich.org/eucharist-livestream/

4) St. Clement's Church, Philadelphia -- a super high church with lovely music:
Livestream Sunday 10 am: https://www.youtube.com/c/SClementsChurchPhiladelphia/live 

5) Or browse the ECCT listings of online opportunities if none of these work out for you: https://www.episcopalct.org/Customer-Content/www/CMS/files/ECCT_Service_5_6_2020.pdf
 
While I am gone
For regular church business that may arise (hard to think of much that would in Covidtide, but in case it does, contact Jamie Kircher, Senior Warden jamielkircher@gmail.com. In a pastoral emergency when you need a priest, my friend and seminary classmate, Mo. Pam Strobel lives just 20 minutes or so away and will be happy to respond to your needs. She can be reached either by email mailto:postrobel@yahoo.com


in Christ,
Fr Montgomery

 
WOMEN'S GROUP:  There will be a Women's Group meeting after the 9:00 am service August 16.  It will be in the Sanctuary.  Social distancing will be practiced.  All the ladies of the church are invited.  If you can't make it to the 9:00 am service, come at 9:45 for the meeting.  See you there!!

ECCT CYCLE OF PRAYER:  Pray for Fresh Expressions of the church in Connecticut; missional experiments; Students preparing to enter schools, colleges, universities, and seminaries; school, college, and university chaplains; all campus ministries; the Higher Education Ministry Network.

ANGLICAN CYCLE OF PRAYER:  Pray for The Most Revd Julio Murray, Archbishop of Central America, on the anniversary of his installation as Primate in the Anglican Communion.


VIGIL LIGHT:  The vigil light burns this week with prayers for all those returning to school both in-person and remotely.

CHECK IT OUT!          
Joyce Generoso is hosting a ZOOM Yoga Fusion class on Wednesday nights.  Please contact her for details!
Joyce:  Cell 203-984-3050
ALTAR GUILD:  Barbara Judson
 

The First Lesson
Genesis 45:1-15

Joseph could no longer control himself before all those who stood by him, and he cried out, “Send everyone away from me.” So no one stayed with him when Joseph made himself known to his brothers. And he wept so loudly that the Egyptians heard it, and the household of Pharaoh heard it. Joseph said to his brothers, “I am Joseph. Is my father still alive?” But his brothers could not answer him, so dismayed were they at his presence.

Then Joseph said to his brothers, “Come closer to me.” And they came closer. He said, “I am your brother, Joseph, whom you sold into Egypt. And now do not be distressed, or angry with yourselves, because you sold me here; for God sent me before you to preserve life. For the famine has been in the land these two years; and there are five more years in which there will be neither plowing nor harvest. God sent me before you to preserve for you a remnant on earth, and to keep alive for you many survivors. So it was not you who sent me here, but God; he has made me a father to Pharaoh, and lord of all his house and ruler over all the land of Egypt. Hurry and go up to my father and say to him, ‘Thus says your son Joseph, God has made me lord of all Egypt; come down to me, do not delay. You shall settle in the land of Goshen, and you shall be near me, you and your children and your children’s children, as well as your flocks, your herds, and all that you have. I will provide for you there—since there are five more years of famine to come—so that you and your household, and all that you have, will not come to poverty.’ And now your eyes and the eyes of my brother Benjamin see that it is my own mouth that speaks to you. You must tell my father how greatly I am honored in Egypt, and all that you have seen. Hurry and bring my father down here.” Then he fell upon his brother Benjamin’s neck and wept, while Benjamin wept upon his neck. And he kissed all his brothers and wept upon them; and after that, his brothers talked with him.

Psalm 133
Ecce, quam bonum!

1 Oh, how good and pleasant it is, *
when brethren live together in unity!

2 It is like fine oil upon the head *
that runs down upon the beard,

3 Upon the beard of Aaron, *
and runs down upon the collar of his robe.

4 It is like the dew of Hermon *
that falls upon the hills of Zion.

5 For there the Lord has ordained the blessing: *
life for evermore.

The Second Lesson
Romans 11:1-2a, 29-32

I ask, then, has God rejected his people? By no means! I myself am an Israelite, a descendant of Abraham, a member of the tribe of Benjamin. God has not rejected his people whom he foreknew.

For the gifts and the calling of God are irrevocable. Just as you were once disobedient to God but have now received mercy because of their disobedience, so they have now been disobedient in order that, by the mercy shown to you, they too may now receive mercy. For God has imprisoned all in disobedience so that he may be merciful to all.

The Gospel
Matthew 15: (10-20), 21-28

[Jesus called the crowd to him and said to them, “Listen and understand: it is not what goes into the mouth that defiles a person, but it is what comes out of the mouth that defiles.” Then the disciples approached and said to him, “Do you know that the Pharisees took offense when they heard what you said?” He answered, “Every plant that my heavenly Father has not planted will be uprooted. Let them alone; they are blind guides of the blind. And if one blind person guides another, both will fall into a pit.” But Peter said to him, “Explain this parable to us.” Then he said, “Are you also still without understanding? Do you not see that whatever goes into the mouth enters the stomach, and goes out into the sewer? But what comes out of the mouth proceeds from the heart, and this is what defiles. For out of the heart come evil intentions, murder, adultery, fornication, theft, false witness, slander. These are what defile a person, but to eat with unwashed hands does not defile.”]

Jesus left that place and went away to the district of Tyre and Sidon. Just then a Canaanite woman from that region came out and started shouting, “Have mercy on me, Lord, Son of David; my daughter is tormented by a demon.” But he did not answer her at all. And his disciples came and urged him, saying, “Send her away, for she keeps shouting after us.” He answered, “I was sent only to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.” But she came and knelt before him, saying, “Lord, help me.” He answered, “It is not fair to take the children’s food and throw it to the dogs.” She said, “Yes, Lord, yet even the dogs eat the crumbs that fall from their masters’ table.” Then Jesus answered her, “Woman, great is your faith! Let it be done for you as you wish.” And her daughter was healed instantly.

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CHRIST EPISCOPAL CHURCH
2 Emerson Street (at the corner of Gregory Boulevard)
East Norwalk, CT 06855-1330


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office@christepiscopalnorwalkct.org

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