The Mouse for March 14, 2021
"Just as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, so must the Son of Man be lifted up."
—John 3:14
Here are the latest opportunities to strengthen
your faith and connect with the community:
The Fourth Sunday of Lent
Sermon: "God's peculiar cure"

This Sunday's lesson from Numbers is one of the more unusual biblical stories you will read. The Israelites are afflicted by poisonous snakes. To cure those who were bitten, Moses makes a bronze serpent, puts it on a pole, and tells them to look at it. Whoever looked at the bronze serpent was cured.

This might have remained an obscure story in the Old Testament (like the time God tried to kill Moses) except that Jesus made the story His own: "Just as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, so must the Son of Man be lifted up, that whoever believes in him may have eternal life" (John 3:14).

Moses provided a peculiar cure for the dying Israelites, and it worked. Likewise, the cure for eternal death comes by a peculiar Jewish man, at least for those who care to look. To find out more about this sympathetic connection between sinner and savior, come hear (or tune into) Sunday's sermon.

In-Person Worship
for Sunday, March 14, 2021

Holy Communion, 8 a.m.
Morning Prayer, 9:30 a.m.

See the in-person worship guidelines below. You can also live-stream the 9:30 service on Sundays by clicking here.

Bishop removes restrictions on public worship

In an email sent March 5, 2021, and linked to here, Bishop Dietsche announced that he was removing all restrictions on public worship, subject to current State of New York guidelines.
Holy Week and Easter at St. Peter's

March 28, Palm Sunday, 8 & 9:30 a.m.
April 2, Good Friday, Noon
April 4, Easter Day, 8, 9*, & 11 a.m.

All services on Easter Day will be services of Holy Communion.

* Family service with Easter Egg Hunt at 9 a.m.
To RSVP for the hunt, please email Marie Scagnelli at
Church School

Childcare and Church School have resumed at the 9:30 a.m. service. Please RSVP to Marie Scagnelli at, by Saturday 5 p.m.
Catechism Corner

The Vicar continues his weekly exposition of the Catechism, found in the Book of Common Prayer, pp. 845-862.

Q. What do we learn about God as creator from the revelation to Israel?
A. We learn that there is one God, the Father Almighty, creator of heaven and earth, of all that is, seen and unseen.

It is common today to obscure the Fatherhood of God, but this amounts to a new Marcionism, an old heresy that rejects the importance of Israel and Israel's scriptures. God told Moses to say to Pharaoh, "Thus says the LORD: Israel is my firstborn son" (Ex. 4:22). (If Israel is God's son, then who is Jesus? I will get to that.)

Deut. 32:6; Isa. 64:8; Mal. 1:6; Mal. 2:10 all speak to the Fatherhood of God and the sonship of Israel. The Father is the creator, and creation bears witness to Him. Atheists who deny the existence of a creator must deny the existence of creation as well if they want to be consistent. In fact, this is what post-modernists do. The revelation to Israel remains a bulwark against the loss of meaning.

Vicar's Bible Study

Our last Bible study on Galatians is this Wednesday, March 17, at 4 p.m. via Zoom. Here is the meeting link. Bible study will resume after Easter on a book TBA.

Also, I do not want you to be afraid to read the Bible and I am happy to schedule a time to read it one-on-one with you. If there is enough interest for another group study at a different time, I will do that too. Please email me at
Nominating Committee Report

The Nominating Committee is pleased to announce the following slate:

  • Warden for a two-year term: Jim Florack
  • Vestry Members for three-year terms: Lise Chase, Diana Wheeler & Jim Wilson

Thank you to these four candidates for their willingness to serve the St. Peter's community, to John Reid, chairman of the Nominating Committee, and to Lois Mander, T. Nolan, David Parshall, Betsy Shequine, and Sarah Stack, who served as members of the Committee.
Flowers at St. Peter's

The floral guild is always grateful for donations, especially for the Easter flowers. Also, if you are interested in dedicating flowers in memorium or for a special occasion, such as a birthday or anniversary, please send an email to with the date and the name(s) to whom you would like to dedicate the arrangements.

You can either send a check to St. Peter’s (PO Box 1502, Millbrook, NY 12545) or put the check in the weekly offering with "flowers" on the memo line. You may also add a dedication in the bulletin or leave it anonymous.
St. Thomas Food Pantry Volunteer sign-up

The St. Thomas Food Pantry is always looking for new volunteers. If you are interested, please fill out the online application. You can access the application by clicking here.
Remember - no clothing donations to St. Peter's at this time!
The church is always open, so if you would like to stop by for a quick prayer or meditation, please feel free to do so. Masks and hand sanitizers will be available in the church entrance.
History Highlight

The Greek-revival church burned in 1880. According to the Tompkins history, it caught fire during services on "the bright Easter morning of March 28, 1880." The janitor was blamed for leaving stove-ashes near the foundation, which a wind re-ignited. Our own Canon Lindsley disputes this account. In any event, the old church was burned to the ground. Two items were saved, a Bible and the marble baptismal font which is used to this day.

—Louise Tompkins, A Landmark: The History of St. Peter's Protestant Episcopal Church (Lithgow, NY, 1971), 17-18.
In-person worship guidelines

  1. Seating has been reduced to 25% of capacity
  2. Seating is socially distanced
  3. Masks are required
  4. Congregational singing is suspended
  5. Communion is distributed in one kind only

We ask that you please not come to church in person if you have Covid-19, have symptoms consistent with Covid-19, or are subject to the provisions of the New York State Covid-19 Travel Advisory.
Collect for Lent 4

Gracious Father, whose blessed Son Jesus Christ came down from heaven to be the true bread which giveth life to the world: Evermore give us this bread, that he may live in us, and we in him; who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.
Text or call the Vicar at (845) 745-8160 for prayer or a pastoral visit.

The Vicar's email address is:
Questions about the parish? Please email:

The Mouse is compiled and edited each week by the Vicar. He asks that submissions to The Mouse be made by the Wednesday prior to Friday's edition. Please send submissions to Thank you.