News & Notes - January 10, 2021
The First Sunday after the Epiphany:
The Baptism of Our Lord Jesus Christ
Online Service: 9:30 a.m.
From the Rector: Epiphany and Truth
Dear friends,

Epiphany is a time of new beginnings, and I'd planned to write something lighter and more optimistic this week. That is harder to do in the aftermath of yesterday's invasion of the U.S. Capitol by rioters bent on subverting this country's electoral process at the encouragement of its own president. Today our national consciousness is traumatized, and many of us are struggling to know how to respond.

The word "politics" means "having to do with the public good." There are times when people of faith and communities of faith have to take stances on politics, even while resisting the temptation to reduce our faith to a political ideology. I believe and hope that people of goodwill of all political temperaments--conservative, moderate, progressive--can unite in denouncing the actions of those rioters who invaded the Capitol, interrupted the business of certifying an election, and threatened our elected leaders.

Our Presiding Bishop Michael Curry issued a statement yesterday stating, "The events at our Capitol today are deeply disturbing. We believe the actions of armed protesters represent a coup attempt. Today’s protesters pushed through police barricades and forced their way into congressional chambers … threatening the safety of lawmakers, their staff and others who work in the Capitol complex. This threatens the integrity of our democracy, the national security of our nation, the continuity of government, and the lives and safety of our legislators, their staffs, law enforcement and all who work in the Capitol.”

What happened in the Capitol yesterday was not an isolated incident, nor did it spring up out of nothing. It arises out of an ecosystem of misinformation, conspiracy theories, and lies that has been fed as never before by our country's president. More deeply still, it arises out of a long history of inequality, exploitation, and racial and gender oppression that has been a part of our society for centuries. It was not an accident that Confederate flags and nooses were part of the iconography employed by some of these rioters. Sadly, it was also not an accident that crosses and "Jesus Saves" signs featured prominently. Christianity in this country has long been intertwined with white nationalism and patriarchy, even as it has also functioned as an inspiration for movements of equality and liberation.

"You shall know the truth," says Jesus, "and the truth shall set you free" (John 8:32). As Christians we are people dedicated to the truth. We can work to become better truth-tellers about our history and our present. One way to do that is through opportunities like our deanery Becoming Beloved Community book group (see below) or our diocesan Sacred Ground circles.

I treasure the fact that as Episcopalians we are a church that encompasses multiple political views. You do not have to vote one way to be an Episcopalian. Nor do you have to agree with every other Episcopalian on abortion, immigration, health policy, taxes, gun control legislation, and so on. We operate not by bringing our partisan ideological stances to bear on scripture, but, ideally, by bringing scripture to bear on every moral choice we are called to make. I don't know whether Jesus thinks government services, private enterprise, or personal charitable donations are the best ways to feed the hungry, care for the sick, welcome the stranger, protect the vulnerable, and shelter those without homes. I have my own (strongish) opinions about those things, and I vote, give, and work in support of them. I hope you do too. But what I know for sure is that he insists that we have to do these things, and that how well a society does them is how it will be judged in God's eyes. Those are non-negotiables for us as Christians, and any politics that traffics in hatred or favors the powerful at the expense of the vulnerable goes against the core commitments of our faith.

This Sunday we will celebrate the First Sunday after the Epiphany, the Feast of the Baptism of Christ. Part of that service is the Renewal of Baptismal Vows, in which we commit ourselves anew to the practices of our baptism. These include resisting evil, seeking and serving Christ in all persons, and respecting the dignity of every human being. May this week's events help us to hear these promises with fresh ears, and may the same Spirit that anointed Jesus at his baptism also stir up that anointing that is in us through our own, to follow in his way.

In Christ’s love,
Online Services
During this time of pandemic, our worship continues. Using technology, we can gather from wherever we may be and join together in the Word and in prayer.

Here's more on how to use Zoom.

Sunday Services:


We are also live streaming each Zoom service on our Facebook page, so you can also watch the service on Facebook, and it will be archived there for viewing later in case you're not able to join in live. You don't need to be a Facebook member to see the live stream on the Facebook page by clicking the link above.
Coming Right Up...
Friday, January 8, 10:00 a.m.: Daughters of the King
Beginning Friday January 8, the Order of the Daughters of the King will be meeting for on Zoom at 10 - 11:30 AM. The meetings will be every other week from this date forward. If you are an Episcopal woman who would like to join us please let Joan Hans-Stafford know at jesstafford60@gmail.com and she will forward the information to you for the meeting.

The Order of the Daughters of the King is devoted to a daily routine of prayer, service and evangelism. Prior to becoming a daughter a three month study to taking one's lifetime vows is provided via a DOK coach. The Order of the Daughters of the King members can be identified by the little silver cross we wear daily, habitually.
Monday, January 11, 6:30 p.m.
Becoming Beloved Community Deanery Book Group

This has been a year of tumult and trouble. As we move into 2021, many are likely yearning for a new beginning. Rather than just leave 2020 in the rearview, we invite you to join us in discussion to turn this year's challenges and discomfort into transformation.

In January, many from our community will be participating in a book study of How to Be an Antiracist, by Ibram X. Kendi. This is an opportunity for those of us at Incarnation and other faith communities in Sonoma County to maintain a heightened awareness of racial injustice and white supremacy in our communities and to develop actions we can take to repair the breach.

Please join us in 2021 every other Monday from 6:30-8 PM PST, January 11, January 25, February 8, February 22, March 8, March 22. Meetings will include an in-depth discussion of the text as well as conversations on race, social justice, white supremacy in our own faith communities and places we live. No prior knowledge or experience is required for participation. All discussions will be confidential and all are welcome.

If you are interested in joining (no commitment required at this time) please fill out the following form by Friday January 1, 2021 : Form Here. Please fill out the form even if you already filled out a similar form for the canceled session last October.

Contact Linda Sevier to order your copy through Incarnation’s Bookstore sevierlinda@gmail.com
For more information please contact Paul Mallatt at 707-312-3870 / paulyfa@me.com
How to Be an Antiracist is available on kindle and available Audible.

Once you have registered for the group, you will receive a Zoom link and login information.
Please Take Note...
No Outdoor Services in January
We will take a break from outdoor services for January and perhaps February. With the colder, wetter weather and the likely post-Christmas increase in COVID-19 cases, this will give us a chance to take a break, re-evaluate our plans for in-person worship as we get deeper into 2021, and to plan for what an eventual return to indoor worship will look like. Thanks to all who have participated in outdoor services during the fall; please watch for more updates in the new year.
Support our Organ!
Our beloved Casavant organ is in need of some restoration work on its pedalboard, one of its pipes, and the Cymbelstern (the device that makes the “celestial tinkly-bell” effect used on some hymns). Even now, while we’re not able to meet in the church, our organ continues to sustain our online worship thanks to recordings by Robert each week. But in order to have it in top shape by the time we’re able to resume indoor worship services, we plan to have the repair work done early in 2021. The total cost for the repairs is estimated at about $4000. Donations to support these repairs and other ongoing maintenance are warmly welcomed. Donations can be made by indicating “Organ” in the memo line of a check or by visiting incarnationsantarosa.org/give, clicking “Give Now,” and selecting “Organ Fund.”
Incarnation Book Group - Living Buddha, Living Christ
The Incarnation Book Group continues to meet on the Third Tuesday of the month at 6:30 pm via Zoom. Please join us on Zoom in reading Living Buddha, Living Christ, by Thich Nhat Hanh. Here's what the publisher has to say.

"World-renowned thinker and scholar Thich Nhat Hanh, considered by many to be a 'Living Buddah', explores the spiritual crossroads where the traditions of Christianity and Buddhism meet. Living Buddha, Living Christ reawakens our understanding of both religions and the connections between them.

The best-selling author of Creating True Peace, and one of the most beloved Buddhist teachers in the West, Vietnamese monk Thich Nhat Hanh has been part of a decades-long dialogue between the two greatest living contemplative traditions. In lucid, meditative prose, he explores the crossroads of compassion and holiness at which the two traditions meet, and reawakens our understanding of both. 'On the altar in my hermitage,' he says, 'are images of Buddha and Jesus, and I touch both of them as my spiritual ancestors.' "

See you Tuesday, January 19, at 6:30 pm PST.

Contact Linda Sevier to order your copy through Incarnation’s Bookstore sevierlinda@gmail.com
For more information and Zoom link, please contact Paul Mallatt at 707-312-3870, pauly@me.com
Living Buddha, Living Christ is available on kindle and available audible.
An opportunity to serve our church –
Vestry candidates needed!

You may ask what is a vestry and what do you do?

During the 3 year term, you attend a monthly meeting and a couple of retreats where you bring your ideas and vision to help support the ministries of our congregation. Learn more about how things work here at Incarnation. Pray regularly for all of us. Live out your faith both at home and at work. Pledge your financial support. Be both a servant and a leader.

Please prayerfully consider serving Incarnation in this role or encourage a friend you think would be a good fit. For a fuller description of Vestry roles and responsibilities read here.

If you are interested in serving on the Vestry, please contact Vestry members, Nancy Wegge, 916-600-5458, nancywegge@yahoo.com, or Connie Sinclair, 707-849-4240, constancesinclair@hotmail.com.

Eligible Vestry candidates must be enrolled in the Register of the Parish, be at least 16 years old, be regular in attendance at services, and be a steward of their time, talent and treasure for the support of the church.
Prayer for America
Every Monday at 3:00 p.m.
Do you feel helpless to effect change in our pandemic hobbled world? Add your voice to assist in the healing of a divided nation. A group of Incarnation parishioners is praying together every Monday at 3:00 pm on Zoom. The meeting is short (about 15 minutes) and centers on prayers from the Book of Common Prayer. Our nation needs your help. Please join us!

For Zoom link, please email Brad, bradsmith51@yahoo.com.
Virtual Celebration for the life of Geoffrey Wright
Geoff, son of Elizabeth and Gene Wright, died on Saturday, October 24. You are invited to join his family and friends for a virtual Celebration of Geoff “Jefe’s” Life at 2 p.m. (PST) on Saturday, January 9, 2021 on this site, http://www.geoffwrightmemorial.com/. Even if you can't attend the celebration, do visit this website were you can read an obituary about his remarkable and singular life, a tribute to him by his former law professor at George Washington University, and view a collection of photos.

In lieu of flowers please consider a donation to NOLS, a non-profit global wilderness school that Geoff attended. You may send a check to 284 Lincoln Street, Lander, Wyoming 82520 (please reference “Geoff Wright” with your donation) or online at NOLS.edu, (and note that the donation is in honor/memory of Geoff in the appropriate text box). Elizabeth and Gene Wright receive email communication at gwrightcelebration@gmail.com.

Log-in information for the Geoff’s Virtual Celebration of Life can be found under the “Celebration” tab on this site, http://www.geoffwrightmemorial.com/.

Save the date! Annual Meeting, Sunday, January 24, 10:45 a.m.
At our Annual Parish Meeting, we reflect on and celebrate the year gone by, look ahead to the year to come, and do some important work by electing new vestry members and delegates to Diocesan Convention.

This year our Annual Meeting will be held on Zoom after the 9:30 a.m. worship service (using the same link as for worship). Please plan on attending, whether or not you are a member of Incarnation. In order to vote in the parish elections, you need to be:

  • 18 years of age or older
  • A member on the rolls of the parish for at least six months (that is, since July 24, 2020, or earlier)
  • A communicant (in other words, you have received Communion at least once during the past year)
  • A giver of record (in other words, you have made a donation with your name attached to it, such as by check or by using a giving envelope with your name)

A link to the online election ballot will be provided during the Annual Meeting.

Come and celebrate our congregational life together on the 24th.
The Way of Love with Bishop Michael Curry - Podcasts Series
These podcasts offer ways to engage with the Way of Love, The Episcopal Church’s intentional commitment to practicing faith by following Jesus.

Hear stories and get practical advice from Bishop Michael Curry and others who are putting the Way of Love practices (Turn, Learn, Pray, Worship, Bless, Go, Rest) into action.

To learn more about the Way of Love podcasts visit The Episcopal Church website.
Prayers
Prayer requests will stay on our list for 3 weeks. After that, if you would like long-term which is for 3 months, please notify the office. Prayers for those who have died will remain on for 6 months.

Your prayers are requested...
..Dawn, Alice D., Cammie, Cory, Caleb, Dicksie, Matt C., Jeremy R., Virginia, Bruce, Cindy P., Don B., Amy C., Francoise, Gene & Elizabeth, Rob M., Hugh & Angela, Mary, Robyn, Monique & Kirk, Amanda, and Nancy H.

...for those who have died: Kay Conner, Mario & Henni P., Harry Dingwall, Athy, Bill Whidden, Marjorie Thoreson, Maureen Green, Alberta Jacobson, Ellen Meuse, Geoff Wright, Carole Jean Martino, Susan Hedges, Jerry Angel, Marilyn Payne.
 
...for the victims of the fires: specials prayers for the first responders, and all those who have suffered injury or loss.
 
...for the victims of COVID-19:  especially we pray for those affected by the COVID-19 virus, and for all who are in danger.
 
...for our city, county, and community; the city council, the board of supervisors, for those who serve the common good in law enforcement and the courts.
 
click here for the Diocesan Cycle of Prayer.
click here for the Anglican Cycle of Prayer.
This Coming Week...
Sunday, January 10

Monday, January 11

Tuesday, January 12
  • 6:30 pm - Incarnation's Book Group
  • 7:00 pm - Through the Ear to the Heart: contemplative singing. Contact Devi Mathieu to request the Zoom invitation: info@singhildegard.com, 707-829-0815.

Wednesday, January 13
  • 6:00 pm - Alleluia Choir: Zoom
  • 7:30 pm - Anam Cara: Songs and Silence, Zoom

Thursday, January 14
  • 5:00 pm - Rainbow Group
  • 6:00 pm - St. Cecilia Choir

Friday, January 15
  • 9:00 am - 12:00 pm: Open Table prep

Saturday, January 16
  • 9:00 am - 11:00 am - Open Table Prep

Sunday, January 17

Pastoral Care
Talk with Stephen
Could you use a prayer or a listening ear? Do you have ideas you'd like to share? Although our offices are closed, Pastor Stephen is available to talk by phone or via Zoom. If you'd like to find a time to talk with Stephen, you can call Alison at 707-579-2604 or email Stephen directly at sshaver@incarnationsantarosa.org.
Need Support?
If you know of anyone, including yourself, who could use a communion visit or a prayer, please call the church office (707-579-2604) or email alison@incarnationsantarosa.org
 
If you have a pastoral emergency after hours or on weekends, please call the church office (number above) and follow the prompts for the Priest-on-Call.