My Mission, Our Mission

for the week of March 21, 2021
Youth & Up mini-retreat - this one is for ALL AGES :-)

What you need: a watch, clock, or timer; a quiet creative activity; a candle (if it's okay, or an intentional object like a cross); a Bible, if you'd like; paper; something to write with; a snack. Have your class with a sibling or other family members, or enjoy this time by yourself.

1) Begin with a transition time - Peace & Quiet: enjoy a creative activity for about 10 minutes (journaling, clay, Legos, drawing, etc.) - a time to change gears.

2) Next, clear that space, or move to another space, and light a candle (or place your intentional object). Settle in, and say a prayer, like: Your word is a lamp unto my feet and a light unto my path. (Psalm 119:105). Offer more prayers, silently, or out loud, if you want.

3) Here are the appointed readings for March 21, 2021. Find them in your Bible, or click here: Read them out loud. Ponder!

Our focus for this class =
My Mission, Our Mission
(PS This exercise is open to everybody - yes, you, too! Please respond to me.)*

The Episcopal Diocese of MA's current mission statement calls us to:
embrace brave change
reimagine our congregations
build our relationships
engage our world

Let your voice be heard!

Every 5 years or so, the Diocese of Massachusetts updates its mission statement. This year, people in charge are reaching out. They want to learn about St James in Amesbury, and to compare and contrast our church with all the other Episcopal churches in Massachusetts.

They want to learn from our successes, failures, and dreams. What makes St James a worthwhile place to belong? What does our parish do well? What does our Church need to do better, need to do more of, or less? What does St James want to be doing?
They want to know!

With our participation, "they" becomes "we" - WE want the Episcopal Church in Massachusetts to be the best it can be. You can help!

So please read - think - and respond (email me!) - here goes!

Why is St James a special place?
  • What happens here (virtually &/or IRL) that either doesn't happen in other places, or that we do especially well?

What more could St James do? Or do better?
  • Who or what needs more attention?

How could St James do those things?
  • What would St James need to be successful?

Why be a part of St James?
  • Why give your time, talent, and money to St James?

Would it be a good idea to reach out to other people?
  • Which people, why?
  • How could St James reach them?
  • and then what?

Should St James begin new programs to address certain issues?
  • Which issues?
  • Why?
  • How?

Should St James partner with other parishes?
  • What might St James lose?
  • What could St James gain?
4) Think about what you read, chat about it if you have company, look it up online (if allowed) and see if there's commentary about it – do you agree? Do you feel called to do something?

5) Brainstorm & make a poster:
Top 10 Things the World Needs and/or
Top 10 Ways I Can Serve (Alone and/or With My Church)
Take a pic or write your list & email it to me!

6) Snack time! Prayers first: talk to God! "I'm grateful for, I'm worried about, I ask for" etc. And/or take 5 or more minutes for Centering Prayer: relaxing into peace & letting thoughts go. Breathe! Enjoy your snack.

7) Finally, clean up your space(s), and say a closing prayer, like:
Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle. - Plato.

8) Blow out the candle, or put away the intentional object (or leave it there if you'd like to create a little sacred area) and say out loud:
Go now in peace, to love and serve the Lord! Thanks be to God!
Youth, come to a ZOOM CLASS tonight, Friday - March 19
6:30pm, Friday, 3/19: Zoom link has been emailed - or text Linda
Zoom youth class every third Friday!
Lent is here!
Check out this recent email about it.

Lent playlists! - here are two: "Ashes" (56 songs) & "Fellowship - Lent" (40 songs)

Tell me about your experiences these past many months. What's good, what's bad? Etc.!
Sending prayers for hope, joy, justice, dignity, love, and peace + a blessed, healthy Lent! Love, Linda
*All ages, young, old, in-between, are invited to respond to these questions. The Diocese really wants to know what each of us is thinking! Send me your responses (or email me your phone #, if it's easier to chat), and I'll compile and forward what you have to say to the people who are asking these questions of us. THANK YOU! (Deadline is asap, btw)

Adults: Please share this email with youth. If you'd like me also to send these emails to the kids, please email me their addresses & your permission. Thanks! Linda