This issue includes news about May Mission & Outreach collections, Wednesday Book Group...and more
Save the date for the Parish Picnic: Sun., Jun. 10 after the
10 AM service, on the lawn. Chicken will be provided. Please bring a dish to share.
The Practice of Giving Thanks

One of the deeply rich spiritual practices I have adopted is the Daily Examen from Ignatian spirituality. The method is taken from Ignatius of Loyola, as described in his Spiritual Exercises. The Jesuit order of priests are required to work through the Examen twice a day, with the intent of helping to see God's hand at work in the world. I use a Jesuit Prayer app on my phone to walk through this process at the end of each day. It helps me frame my reflections and prayers with gratitude.

 There are five simple steps to the Examen.  
  1.  Become aware of God's presence.  
  2.  Review the day with gratitude.
  3.  Pay attention to your emotions. 
  4.  Choose one feature of the day and pray from it.
  5.  Look toward tomorrow.
There are many different ways in which we can cultivate a posture of gratitude, both in our lives and in our prayers. The Examen is one example that has been fruitful for me.

We are entering a season of transitions--the darkness of winter has passed, the gardens are in full bloom, the end of the school year is near, and the long days of summer are before us. Whether you find yourself ready for this next season, or mourning what has just passed, I invite you to seek gratitude in the small things, and be curious about how this frames your engagement with God.

This coming Sunday, May 13, we will honor a year's worth of time and commitment from our Sunday School teachers. We will present them with a small token of our thanks as we celebrate their commitments. I will then invite them forward for a blessing from me and the children, who have so marvelously benefited from their contributions. Our prayers and worship are intended to frame and enhance our life's work. Please join us this Sunday as we seek to embody this rich practice of giving thanks!

Blessings,
Beth
Wednesday Book Group End of the Year Lunch
 
The Wednesday "Lunch Bunch" Book Group will meet over a pot-luck lunch on Wed., May 23 at noon at the home of Cindy Matlack. We look forward to enjoying everyone's food contributions while discussing We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves by Karen Joy Fowler and selecting a book to read over the summer.

It's not too late to RSVP by signing up to bring a dish to share.

Barb Adams


The Shrine Mont parish retreat
planning committee has already begun working in earnest and early registration has b egun! For questions or more information, please seek out Tom Sheldon, Caroline Haynes, or Linda Kelleher.  Details on how to register  can be found on our parish website. Please use the  online registration form  to reserve your spot today!
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St. Michael's VBS 2018
Shipwrecked: Rescued by Jesus
July 9-13

Communication Deadlines
 
Please submit short announcements of a timely nature to Wil Harkins, parish administrator, by noon on Thursday prior to the Sunday that you'd like it included in the service bulletin. 
 
Longer articles and items that are not time sensitive should be submitted to The Guardian newsletter staff by the 1st or 15th of the month. The newsletter is published on the 2nd and 4th Tuesday of the month. All submissions are subject to edit and approval.
 
 
Support St. Michael's

 

You can make single gifts and recurring donations (pledges) through our online service  Network for Good.

Dan Ruff presenting the children's gift.
A Gift from Our Youngest Crew

The children of St. Michael's participated in Rebuilding Together by working on an art project for the home owner and bringing snacks to the volunteers at the site. They learned about treating our neighbors as ourselves by reading the story of the Good Samaritan and talking about how our own hands can be helping hands for a neighbor in need. They thought it was very special to share their art with the home owner who was herself an artist and really appreciated the art work the children made for her.

Pauline Kusiak
May Mission & Outreach Collections

Outreach Envelope: Donations will support Mission Aviation Fellowship (MAF). Read news from the Schandorffs below.

Outreach Basket: We are continuing to collect lightweight jackets, sweaters, sweatshirts, and raincoats for the Arlington Street People's Assistance Network (A-SPAN). Donations of travel sized toiletries are welcome all year.
Update from MAF Missionaries
 
Dear friends at St. Michael's, 
 
We send you warm greetings from Idaho! We have been back in the U.S. for about 7 months after serving 5 years in Haiti and are getting back into the swing of Stateside living. We feel blessed to be near family and not far from MAF (Mission Aviation Fellowship) headquarters, where Tim works in the finance department. 
 
Tim has a number of projects on his plate. He jokes (well, half jokes!) that he has enough to keep him busy for at least 5 years! While his projects are varied (e.g., this year the biggest is helping to design and introduce and train staff in new budgeting software for the whole organization), his overarching goal is teaching and training our field and HQ staff to do their budgets and finances more efficiently and effectively, to free up more time for the rest of MAF's ministry. A lofty goal, indeed, but one Tim and the new VP of Finance at MAF are committed to--being good stewards of the resources entrusted to them. To this end, Tim is traveling to South Africa this month to train our Africa program managers as they meet for an annual conference. He has been asked to consider other international trips this year. Please pray as he prioritizes projects and tries to balance training trips overseas with keeping projects moving forward at HQ.
 
Liz and the boys have been homeschooling this year; please pray for a strong finish for the school year and wisdom as we evaluate schooling options for next year. J- needs help with a learning disability and we think B- (the sole extrovert in the family) could benefit from more social time with kids his age. 
 
Thank you for your continued support of our ministry with MAF!  We hope to visit with you and catch up in person during a trip east this summer!

St. Michael's Episcopal Church
 1132 N. Ivanhoe Street  | Arlington, VA 22205-2445

Our mission is to provide a nurturing spiritual community in Christ Jesus as the foundation 

from which we strive to go forth and serve God by the power of the Holy Spirit.