From Reverend Jonathan Clodfelter
Later in January 2020 the Bishop of Pennsylvania will come and spend time with us at the Church of the Redeemer. Under his liturgical leadership we, as a congregation, will renew our pledge to uphold our Baptismal Covenant. A covenant that we made at our baptism or was made on our behalf by our parents and godparents or even baptismal sponsors as we were baptized, carries with it tremendous import. This covenant commits us to follow God in a particular manner. A way that is fraught with danger and uncertainty as we engage God's creation.
No one wants politics in church. We would like to keep our worlds compartmentalized - which keeps things simple. But nothing my friends is simple. As Christians we are called to act in a variety of ways that require risk. Think about what the covenant means to us.
The Baptismal Covenant contains five questions regarding how we, as Christians, are called to live out our faith. And where we, as the beloved children of God that we are, can find help. The answer from our worship is: I will, with God's help. Our help comes from one place and one place only, and that is God.
Our Baptismal Covenant concludes with five questions.
1. Will you continue in the apostles' teaching and fellowship, in the breaking of bread, and in the prayers?
2. Will you persevere in resisting evil, and, whenever you fall into sin, repent and return to the Lord?
3. Will you proclaim by word and example the Good News of God in Christ?
4. Will you seek and serve Christ in all persons, loving your neighbor as yourself?
5. Will you strive for justice and peace among all people, and respect the dignity of every human being?
These questions that we answer with - what may be argued - the most important statements of our lives, may in fact, just be said aloud because everyone else is saying it. We answer I will with God's help. These words are important beyond measure. Can you imagine what the world would be like if we actually did the things that we say we are going to do.
Right now, along our borders, we are tightening security, which is right to do. I remember camping along the border thirty years ago and witnessing first-hand nefarious activity - ask me about this as it's a great story. The problem as I see it is the way we are doing it and it begs the question, how do these actions, well reported at one time in the media, but now are being pushed to the back pages of the paper by the threat of war with Iran, fires in Australia, and who knew in advance of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex' potential distancing themselves from the daily activities and responsibilities of the royal family.
If we were to continue in the apostles' teaching and fellowship, in the breaking of bread, and in the prayers, our churches would be full. If we were to persevere in resisting evil, and, whenever we fall into sin, repent and return to the Lord, which frankly we all do. It is the message of God in the Garden of Eden. But it does not stop at the fall, it continues guiding us in how we are to act, when we do come up short. We are called to proclaim by word and example the Good News of God in Christ. These are huge words, but if we just walk the walk that we have been saying we are, then we will be fine. We are all called to seek and serve Christ in all persons, loving your neighbor as yourself. I recognize that it is hard to find Christ in all persons, but that is also why we are called to "repent our own sinfulness." We must be able to look deeply into the eyes of another and see Christ. And then, to strive for justice and peace among all people, and respect the dignity of every human being. Wow. What would the world look like if we were to do this?
With the gift of being, comes tremendous responsibility.
From the Senior Warden
As a former English teacher I love the word "epiphany" because it was what I wanted my students to have every day. I was hoping they would have that "aha" moment when they understood something new or saw something in a different way, whether it was from a story, poem, novel, reflection by another student, or their own insight.
This is why I love the Epiphany season in the church year. I would love to know why three wise men from different parts of the east who were non-Christians, non-Jews would want to go on a long journey to find a baby. What epiphany did they have? What kind of king were they expecting?
Then I turn to Redeemer and wonder what kind of epiphanies will we have in 2020. What kind of journey will we go on with our new priest, Jon? What new people will join us on our journey? How far can we go with our new sister parish, St. Stephen's?
We might not be able answer any of these questions right now. But we can climb up on our camels and begin looking for the star. I look forward to traveling with the rest of you wise people.
Gift of Angels
The Gift of Angels program is being re-energized with the formation of a committee comprised of Lee Lucas, Helen Lightcap, and Jane Nyiri. They will be compiling a list of items needed by the church and prioritizing them. We have a number of people who have already donated to this program or have committed to a donation and we want to thank them for their support of Redeemer. When the committee completes the list of needs, they will match the gifts with the needs and then we can acknowledge the donors. If you see a need or wish to make a donation, please contact one of the three members of the committee.
Sunday School in January
This Sunday is the first Sunday in Epiphany and the Sunday we perform the Epiphany Pageant. There will be no Sunday School that day so that families can see the pageant during the 10:15 service. We will also observe a Redeemer tradition with an Epiphany cake after church. The cake will have a thimble, a ring, and 10 dimes in it. If you get a piece of cake with a thimble, you will make the cake next year. If you get the ring, you will be king or queen for the day and everyone has to be nice to you. If you get one of the dimes, you will get a dollar that you are supposed to use for something good.Regular classes will resume on January 19.
This Sunday, January 12, we will starting a new series on the cataclysmic topic of the "apocalypse." The word actually means "revelation" but usually refers to a revelation about the end times. In the class we will seek revelation about the following questions:
What did the Old Testament prophets say about the apocalypse? What did Jesus say? What about Paul? What does the Book of Revelation say? When are the end times coming? Do we need to do anything to get ready? How has the apocalypse affected modern culture?
Come join us between the services at 9:00 in the parish hall before it is too late.
Souper Bowl of Caring
Our annual Souper Bowl luncheon will take place after
the 10:30 service on Sunday, January, 26th. We request that you bring food staples for St. Mary's Food Cupboard or make a monetary donation in return for a bowl of homemade soup and bread. Extra soup will be sold after the lunch. St. Mary's is currently providing food for over 100 families each week with ever-increasing needs. Our collection is part of the Souper Bowl of Caring campaign in Springfield. Please be generous.
A list of dedications for the year 2020 is being compiled in the office. If you wish to sponsor the flowers during this year please submit your name and preferred wording of the dedication to firstname.lastname@example.org
or in a note placed in the offering plate.
Redeemer Thrift Shop
Happy New Year!!!
The Thrift Shop i sup and running after a short holiday break. Our tables and racks are full of lots of good winter sales so come on down and look around. You never know what treasure you might find!
December sales $1,822
Total for the year 2019 $22,497
Hours of Operation
Tuesdays 10 am - 2 pm
Saturdays 9 am - 2 pm
Christmas Treasures and More
Thank you to all committee members and all who contributed to the success of this annual event.
SAVE THE DATE
LIFELINE SCREENING RETURNS IN JANUARY
For holiday gift giving remember to use Amazon Smile when you shop online!
To use AmazonSmile, simply go to
from the web browser on your computer or mobile device, or go to Amazon and search Amazon smile. On your first visit to AmazonSmile (
), you need to select Church of the Redeemer as your charitable organization to receive donations.
Ella Jane Staley
1/3 MacKensie Milligan 1/22 Adele Holmes
1/4 Giovanna Forte 1/24 Cyn Mattson
1/5 Erin Witzel 1/25 Ginny Doyle
1/5 Henrietta Taylor 1/26 Brad Gress
1/12 Heather Witzel 1/27 Mia Reiter
1/14 Susan Atchison 1/28 Emily Collins
1/16 Kyle Kolynych 1/29 Jameson Arch Gress
Word search puzzle extracted from BiblePuzzels.com on 12/
Send corrections, remarks, or updates to the Redeemer Reporter to Israel Ramirez: email@example.com.
Reverend Jonathan Clodfelter, Priest
Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, 10 am to 2 pm; Friday, 10 am to 1 pm.
Summer Office Hours: Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, 10:30 am - 4:30 pm
Susanna Faust, Minister of Music M
aria Macfarlan,Parish Administrator
Gary Rew, Sexton
'22, Senior Warden - firstname.lastname@example.org
'20, Junior Warden - email@example.com
'21, Keith Brown '22, Ginny Doyle '22, Jim Lambert '21,
'20, Jane Nyiri '20, Gary Rew '21
Linda Bennett, Carol Kane, Claire Witzel