The Mouse for April 18, 2021
"Do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul; rather fear him who can destroy both soul and body in hell."
—Matt. 10:28
Here are the latest opportunities to strengthen
your faith and connect with the community:
The Third Sunday of Easter
Sermon: "Two Deaths"

Death is not a subject we like to dwell on, but it is a meaningful one. Like death, judgment is another meaningful topic. The Book of Revelation even speaks of there being a second death to coincide with the last judgment. Preachers tend to shrink from both topics because it is hard to preach death and judgment without your listeners becoming anxious.

My desire is not to make you anxious, but to plumb the meaning of these things with you. Our goal in this sermon series is understanding. But while I will be happy if we come to an understanding, personally speaking, I preach so that you may have hope as well.

This third Sunday of Easter, when the message of Christ’s resurrection is still front and center, and all things are being made new, I take on the challenge of making topics like death and judgment witnesses to hope.

Sunday, April 18, 2021

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

See the public worship guidelines below. You can also live-stream the 9:30 service by clicking here.
Easter Sermon Series

The Vicar is presenting the following sermon series during Easter.

11-Apr   Topic: Adam & Christ   Title: "Two Adams" (1 Cor. 15:22)
18-Apr   Topic: Judgment   Title: "Two Deaths" (Matt. 10:28)
25-Apr   Topic: Regeneration   Title: "Two Births" (John 3:3)
2-May   Topic: Atonement   Title: "Christ's Cross" (1 Pet. 2:24)
9-May   Topic: Eternal life   Title: "Your Resurrection" (John 11:25)
16-May   Topic: Glory   Title: "Your Crown" (1 Pet. 5:4)
23-May   Topic: Divine Election   Title: "God's Church" (John 15:16)
Catechism Corner

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

God the Father, p. 846.

Q. How was this revelation [of God the Father] handed down to us?
A. This revelation was handed down to us through a community created by a covenant with God.

This community was formed the moment God spoke the words, “I will take you as my people, and I will be your God” (Ex. 6:7). If God had said nothing else, it would have been enough. (As the Jews sing at Passover, “Dayenu”!)

“I will be your God” contains the whole gospel, it is the full word of God, of both the covenants (old and new), and it is the promise of eternal life. Why? Because to be in the presence of God is to be alive.

As Calvin notes, God continues to call Himself the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob long after their deaths. “Would not that name have been laughable if they really had perished? It would have been like saying: ‘I am the God of those who do not exist!’”[1]

God lives, and because He lives, so do we, His church, His people.

—JWD.
The Mouse, Apr. 18, 2021

[1] Jean Calvin, Institutes of the Christian Religion, trans. Robert White (Edinburgh: The Banner of Truth Trust, 2014), 436.
Flowers at St. Peter's

The floral guild is always grateful for donations. If you are interested in dedicating flowers in memoriam or for a special occasion, such as a birthday or anniversary, please send an email to stpeterschurch@optonline.net 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.
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

Homer Wheaton Finch, a devoted parishioner, had this to say about Mr. Weills, a sometime vicar of St. Peter's, in the July 19, 1912 issue of Millbrook Round Table:

"Mr. Weills was a man of sterling character. He laughed heartily at oddities and eccentricities of people, loved a joke, and was fond of fishing occasionally. He used to say afterward, it was the happiest time of his life when he was at Lithgow, doing church work, digging in his garden, and riding about the countryside on his horse, Billy, making calls. He had the faculty of becoming acquainted with everyone in the community. He had strong convictions relating to the teachings of the church, at the same time recognizing the rights of others to hold different opinions from his own."

A good model for any vicar to emulate!

—Adapted from Louise Tompkins, A Landmark: The History of St. Peter's Protestant Episcopal Church (Lithgow, NY, 1971), 19-20.
Worship guidelines

  1. Seating is currently ~35% of capacity and socially distanced
  2. Masks are required
  3. Congregational singing is suspended
  4. Communion is distributed in one kind only

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.

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 the Third Sunday of Easter

O God, whose blessed Son did manifest himself to his disciples in the breaking of bread: Open, we pray thee, the eyes of our faith, that we may behold him in all his redeeming work; through the same thy Son Jesus Christ our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with thee, in the unity of 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: jwdell2@pm.me.
Questions about the parish? Please email:
stpeterschurch@optonline.net

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 jwdell2@pm.me. Thank you.