Volume 6, Issue 49
December 3, 2021
THIS SUNDAY: December 5, 2021
Second Sunday of Advent

Genesis 17:15-22
God's original promise to Abraham of many descendants comes to fruition with God telling Abraham that his barren wife, Sarah, will give birth to Isaac in a year's time.

Psalm 78:1-4
The Psalmist extols the value of parents teaching their children about the wonderful mighty deeds of God.

Romans 8:19-19, 22-25
Resonating with our Advent observance, the Apostle Paul writes that although we live within an imperfect world, we wait with bated breath for the realization of our full status as God's children as well as rising again with immortal resurrected bodies.

Luke 1:39-45
With the excitement of her pregnancy, Mary goes down south to Judea to visit her cousin Elizabeth, who herself is six months pregnant with the future John the Baptist. Elizabeth, having been barren before, breaks out in praise of God's miraculous works and in awe of the coming birth of Mary's baby, the Messiah.

Joe Adorno (EM)*
John Hanaoka (U)
Marge Akana (AG)
Suzanne Kobayashi (DM)

Linda Crocker (EM)
David Crocker (U)
CeCe Caldwell (LR)
Jan Hashizume (AG)
Rachel Secretario (SS)
Vikki Secretario, Nelson Secretario (HP)
Jan Hashizume, Ron Morinishi (DM)

Live Stream
9:00AM on our home page, YouTube, or Facebook accounts

* EM - Eucharistic Minister; U - Usher; LR - Lay Reader; AG - Altar Guild; HP - Healing Prayers; DM - Digital Ministry; SS - Sunday School

Sunday School
Sunday, December 5th
9:30 - 10:00AM
Memorial Hall

Advent Formation Class
The Tales of Mother Mary - Exploring Our Advent Gospel Stories
Advent 2, December 5th: Luke 1:39-45
Two Cousins and Two Pregnancies
Advent 3, December 12th: Luke 1:46-56
Mary's Song of Praise
Advent 4, December 19th: Matthew 1:18-25
Joseph's Support of Mary
8:45 - 9:15AM
Church lanai canopy

Daughters of the King
Wednesday, December 8th
6:00 - 7:00PM
Zoom Meeting
Contact Mabel Antonio for login info.

Columbarium and Church Closed
Tuesday and Wednesday, December 7th
and 8th
all day
Tenting for termites

Saturday Workday
December 11th
8:00 - 10:00AM
Gym and Church

Dance Ministry Christmas Dance Practice
Sunday, December 12th
Memorial Hall

Project Vision Hi`ehi`e Mobile Showers with Laundry Love Go-Bags
Thursday, December 16th
11:00AM - 4:00PM
Church Lawn

Dance Ministry Performance
Sunday, December 19th
9:30 AM service

Advent Scripture Readings from
A Women's Lectionary for the Whole Church
Rev. Dr. Wil Gafney
"A Women's Lectionary for the Whole Church for the Whole Church is a completely new lectionary built from the ground up that includes a new gender-expansive translation of the biblical texts: the four traditional weekly readings..., all of the Principal Feasts of the Church, and the daily readings for Holy Week and Easter Week."
Many of the All Saints' `Ohana know Wil from her frequent visits to Kauai and All Saints'. Wil spends a good deal of her time on Kauai writing her many books and articles. She is a renowned Hebrew scholar and is The Right Rev. Sam B. Hulsey Professor of Hebrew Bible at Brite Divinity School.
Recurring Events
Aloha Hour
Every Sunday after the 9:30AM service
Church Lanai

Monday/Friday Crew
Every Monday/Friday, 8:00AM 
Church Office

Project Vision Hi`ehi`e Mobile Showers
1st and 3rd Thursday, 12:00 - 3:00PM
Church Campus
Laundry Love Go-Packs
1st and 3rd Thursdays, 12:00 - 3:00PM
Church Campus

Daughters of the King
2nd & 4th Wednesday, 6:00 - 7:00PM
You care for the sick and suffering in body, mind, and spirit, especially Melvin, Diane, Jeffrey, Ronald, Mario, Carmen, Sachi, the Nomi `Ohana, the Nakamura `Ohana, and those we name silently or aloud, let us pray to the Lord. ​Lord, have mercy. 

You embrace all who have died in the faith and bring them into your glorious presence. We pray especially for Jennie, Paul, and others we name silently or aloud. We thank you for their example and rejoice in their lives. We pray to you, O Lord. 
Upcoming Christmas Events
Mark Your Calendars and Celebrate!
December 24th
  • 5:30PM `Ohana Christmas Eve Service in-person and livestreamed
  • 10:30PM Midnight Mass with Choir in-person and livestreamed

December 25th
  • 9:30AM Eucharist: in-person

Livestreaming services are available via links on the All Saints' website: allsaintskauai.org
Reflections from Kahu Kawika
From Messed Up to Blessed Up
The Epistle intends to offer both video and text versions of Kahu's sermon presented the previous Sunday. Unfortunately, technical difficulties related to internet connectivity make it impossible to bring you this week's video sermon. The issue has been addressed and we expect to resume publishing the weekly sermon video next week.
Luke 1:26-38
Genesis 16:7-13
Philippians 2:5-11
Advent 1C w/ Women’s Lectionary
28 November 2021
All Saints’ Church, Kapaa

Mother Teresa, “the Angel of Calcutta,” told a story about the time she came down with a terrible fever. Her temperature climbed and she became delirious. She had a vision of being at the gates of heaven and telling St. Peter that she was ready to pass from this world to the next. But St. Peter refused her entry into the high vault of heaven. Mother Teresa asked why. Peter replied: “Because there are no slums in heaven.” Peter, in effect, told Mother Teresa that she still had work left to do on earth. So in her vision she turned back with some reluctance from heaven to earth out of her love and obedience to God.

We have an intriguing set of Bible accounts in our readings this morning to kick off the new church year and the season of Advent, which means “anticipation of what is coming.” I entitle this sermon “From Messed Up to Blessed Up,” because all of our Bible characters this morning, like Mother Teresa, have a choice to make – to stay in a comfortable place, or out of their love for God to willingly enter into circumstances that may not be pleasant. Each of them shows an amazing display of courage and self-offering for the sake of their greater trust in God to “have their back” in the end.

In Genesis 16, the runaway Egyptian slave of Abram’s wife Sarai, Hagar, encounters God in the inhospitable desert of the Negev. Sarai is jealous of Hagar because, even though God had promised Abram many descendants, Sarai herself could not have children (of course, with hindsight we know later on God blesses her body to be able to give birth to Isaac). So Sarai concocts a scheme to force God’s promise of descendants to come about, by having her husband sleep with Hagar. The plan works – Hagar gets pregnant. Is Sarai overjoyed? No, not in the least – in fact, she gets angrier with Hagar and starts to emotionally and physically abuse her. So Hagar runs away, even though she has no other prospects awaiting her. God meets Hagar in the desert and promises her that if she returns back to Sarai and Abram’s house she would become the ancestress of many nations. Amazingly, Hagar has the courage and wherewithal to believe God and return to what anyone would call messy and possibly even potentially dangerous circumstances. She then gives birth to Ishmael, who later himself becomes wealthy and biblically the father of all non-Jewish Semitic peoples. God’s promise to Hagar is an extension of God’s original promise of blessing to Abram of many descendants too numerous to count.

Our Gospel reading from Luke 1, which we read yearly as part of our Advent preparation for Christmas, also shows us a young woman of great faith and courage. Imagine yourself in the shoes of young Mary – a teenager of humble origins but nonetheless in a comfortable position to look forward to a marriage to an honorable man named Joseph, a carpenter from the town of Nazareth in Galilee of the north. She is just going about her life when another messenger of God, Gabriel, announces to her that God had chosen her to be the very vessel of the birth of God in human form. Quite a high calling for anyone, let alone for someone so young. However, we can only imagine the feelings she must have experienced at this earth-shaking announcement – would this pregnancy mess up her upcoming marriage to her fiance’ Joseph? How could he or her family or townspeople understand at all – if she tells the truth and says God got her pregnant, who going to believe that? It sounds like the excuse of someone delusional. But like with Hagar earlier, God gives Mary a choice by giving her a heads up about God’s intentions – she could reject this and go back to living the life she had assumed was hers, or she could courageously welcome God’s intervention and take the risk of total rejection and even possible stoning to death. Out of her trust in God and that if this is of God that God would make a way out of no way, she submits herself to God’s plan for her and for the world, and goes back home to live with the consequences. How many of us could have such courageous faith?

There are these two amazing mothers whom we honor this morning, and then there is finally a Son. This Son, of course, is none other than Jesus Christ. We find in our Epistle reading from Philippians 2 the oldest recorded lyrics to a Christian hymn that is still in existence – the ode to the Son of God who leaves the joys of heaven to be born as a human, live among us, suffer and die for us, and for God to restore him to his rightful place on the throne of heaven. Here we see that Jesus had a similar choice to make that Hagar and Mary faced – stay in a more comfortable and safe situation at the throne of heaven, or obey God and take the risk of suffering intense loss in the shorter term in order to gain much more in the long run? Jesus gives us a fine example of someone who in God’s economy chooses “downward mobility” in order to earn the joys of being raised up again to a higher state.

Here we have wonderful and awe-inspiring examples of courageous faith. Like Mother Teresa who in her vision chooses to return to her work for the poor in the slums of Calcutta, Hagar, Mary, and Christ himself each choose short-term mess for long-term bless.

So it is with us. If the season of Advent is anything, it is a season of painful waiting in the world and not detached from the world; a season of darkness before the light comes; a season about a future that is not yet--about a redemption that is “drawing near” in the language of Luke’s Gospel. It shows us a messy time in anticipation of a blessed time.

Advent is about the coming of the Child of Mary and it is about the end of history. But Advent is more than all this – it also concerns itself with our time on our imperfect earth while we await heaven. We must be like Peter at heaven’s gate: We must remind ourselves that there is work to do as we wait for the Lord of History. The best way to wait is to work for the kingdom – for justice and righteousness in the land. That’s what Hagar, Mary, and Jesus did with their lives, and that’s what Mother Teresa did with her time on planet earth.

In an editorial in the New York Times over ten years ago, the lead singer Bono from the acclaimed Irish rock group U2 asserted that America holds the keys to solving the three greatest threats we face on this planet: extreme poverty, extreme ideology and extreme climate change. All of us would hope to escape these “signs of the times,” but like our Bible characters this morning we cannot take any shortcuts nor quick fixes.

Advent cries out to lessen the effect of extreme poverty. Shouldn’t we champion the cause of poor women and girls whose issues are so often forgotten, especially this year in places like Afghanistan, West Africa, Indigenous-American reservations, and areas of urban neglect? Doesn’t our care for these recall where we find Mary, the bearer of God? Thankfully, global poverty rates are much lower than they were even twenty years ago, but this also prods us to embrace the need to promote education and advancement for girls and women in our world. 

Meanwhile, extreme ideology, the second of Bono’s worldwide threats, is, if anything, worse now than when Bono warned of it. Waiting for the Christ Child might mean listening to those with whom we disagree. How can we be civil in our religious and political discourse—being able to hear what others have to say and yet live within the tension between that and our own original opinions? Preparing God’s house for the Christ Child might mean making our metaphorical rooms larger – to accommodate the difference that is within our politics and even within own faith tradition. Is not Advent also a time for interfaith cooperation as we wait within the tensions often felt between Islam, Judaism and Christianity? Hence the beauty and blessing of the Kapaʻa Interfaith Association Thanksgiving Service and Meal Gifts we did this past Thursday and we do each year. This Child of Mary, the Christmas Joy we await is larger than our own world. Jesus is the world's child and we must live into such radical inclusion, such deep joy.

Bono's third threat, extreme climate change, is a political “hot potato,” but so are exteme poverty and extreme ideology. Truly, the writer of Luke's Gospel is correct when Jesus predicts, “There will be signs in the sun, the moon, and the stars – and on earth distress.” Advent is a time in our Church to read the signs as carefully as we read the Bible or light the candles of the Advent wreath. Whether we still have eons on this earth of our collective time is running out, the message of Advent is to hope even when the waiting is painful. No one has waited for a child without at least some anxiety or some fear: “Will the birth be safe? Will I be a good parent? Will I be able to provide for this child?” God's Church waits each year for the Lord of all with fear and foreboding – for we know in our hearts that with the coming of the Christ Child we have work to do, threats to meet and dreams to make real. In Jesus born in a cave and laid to rest in a tomb, God comes to be with us and for us in the world.

The poet Denise Levertov, who herself came from a religiously eclectic background and would eventually convert to Roman Catholicism, wrote: “The world is not with us enough. O taste and see...” We must be with the world enough this Advent. We must travel lightly – with only our prayers, with whatever pain we have, and with willing hands. We must be alert at all times to Bon’s three extreme threats – to look out for those with little, for those with whom we differ, and for the earth that is suffering and weary. We must be praying daily to have the strength to stand now and in the last great day before the Son of Man, this Christ Child who will come and who is forever our Lord and Savior, this promised Child of Mary and Lord of History

This morning, if we find ourselves with somewhat messy lives and in the midst of tricky situations, then we are in good company – take heart! Like Hagar and Mother Mary, let us step into the courage and adventure to go “from messed up to blessed up.” Let us pray:
Gracious and loving God, make us willing servants in your world. Help us to find the world enough in all we do. Help us to live in the spirit of Hagar, Mary, and Jesus as we serve in your name. Give us courage and grace to step out into the mess to receive your blessings. Amen.

KIA Thanksgiving Luncheon a Great Success
Mahalo Nui Loa to All the Volunteers
Words cannot express my appreciation to my All Saints' `Ohana for all their support, donations, and assistance for the Thanksgiving Day Community Feast. With both delivery and takeout box lunches, we served 1375 Thanksgiving meals!

Mahalo Kahu+ for organizing all the ministers for our Interfaith Service, Wayne for cleaning the kitchen and taking care of the "elephant", all our drivers for making kūpuna and shut ins have a yummy holiday, Cami for always helping me with printing, Mary Margaret for name tags and card layout, David C. for organizing the drive through (no mud/rain this year!), for Linda, Max, and Larry for gym assistance, Ron for set up on Wed, and a 'save', Pam and Jeff for years of Home Delivery packing, Chris for sweeping the gym clean likity split, and of course for the Sato Family who organize Home Delivery and without whom we could not be successful. Many thanks to everyone who helped get meals to cars, direct traffic, and to Mark's Place for providing the delicious Thanksgiving meal.

Mahalo Nui Loa.

Sarah Rogers
Thanksgiving Chair

Laundry Love Volunteer Opportunities
Please Support Our Ongoing Ministry
The recent collaboration with Project Vision Hawaii on our campus has created an opportunity for a small, core group of volunteers who collectively can commit to staffing a table for three hours (noon-3:00) on the first and third Thursday of each month. Your service would include distributing to our houseless population the materials needed to do their own wash. Rolls of quarters will be in your possession and part of the distribution, so comfort with this responsibility is something to consider. Other than that, the only prerequisite is a giving heart, which I know exists in great quantity within the All Saints' `Ohana.

Please contact the office to have your name added to the list. We need to have this team assembled as soon as possible, at which point we can develop a schedule of solo or paired volunteers, however the team members prefer to operate.
Mahalo in advance for this contribution of your valuable time.


Geoff Shields
Laundry Love Ministry Lead

New Advent Formation Class
The Tales of Mother Mary - Exploring Our Advent Gospel Stories
Please join Kahu Kawika and Seminary Intern Suzanne Kobayashi during the Advent Season between our Sunday services (8:45 - 9:15AM) under the canopy as we explore in greater depth our four Advent Gospel lessons, as follows:

Advent 2, 5 Dec.: Luke 1:39-45 - Two Cousins and Two Pregnancies
Advent 3, 12 Dec.: Luke 1:46-56 - Mary's Song of Praise
Advent 4, 19 Dec.: Matthew 1:18-25 - Joseph's Support of Mary

This is your chance to discuss with the preacher each sermon, which will all be based on these four Advent Gospel accounts. A hui hou!

Sign Up for 2022 Altar Flower Donations Now
Donation Forms Available Online or at Church 
Ever wonder where all our beautiful altar flowers come from each Sunday? 

Our flowers are lovingly arranged by Mrs.Tanaka or by JC Flowers. These flowers were all donated by members of the congregation. To participate with a donation in 2022 sign up on the form outside the sanctuary before or after services. You may also contact Pam Sokei at psokei@gmail.com or Kathy Miyake at 808-652-9393 to request a date.
All Saints' Sloggett/Wilcox `Ohana Organ
A Vision Becomes Reality
At its core pono is about a profound, deeply spiritual reality that everything that is truly good must be a gift from God. To rebuild the organ at All Saints’ is truly pono: good for the church, good for the island of Kaua`i, good for future generations and good for the glory of God. The pipe organ at All Saints’ is not just an instrument. It is a link to our history, our ancestors, and our sacred traditions.”
-Rev. Ryan Newman
Thanks to David Murray for this reflection

Bill and I take our dog, Maka, down to All Saintsʻ church just about every morning for her “morning constitutional.” Itʻs a routine that allows the three of us to relax – we donʻt have to put her on a leash and she feels safe and at home in an environment that she has known for about 15 years. Just recently, however, things have changed. “Is that the organ we hear and, if it is, who is playing it?”

First, a little background. The original Austin Pipe Organ had been donated to the church by Mrs. S. W. Wilcox in 1925. It served the church for 90 years but age and the tropical environment took their toll and the organ was decommissioned in 2016. Our church then embarked on a five-year project to raise the funds and build a replacement instrument. It was a long complicated and at times frustrating project which actually consisted of three distinct parts – the Organ Replacement project, the Sanctuary Enhancement project, and, to top it all off, the Roof Replacement project! Long, complicated and frustrating? Yes, but we hung in there and are now reaping the rewards for all that hard work.

The vision of the organ project team led by Rev. Ryan Newman and Morris Wise was to have an instrument which would be used not just as part of worship at All Saintsʻ, but also as a community resource. It would allow the parish to bring in outside performers and choral groups, as well as to use the organ as a teaching tool. That is what Bill and I have heard as weʻve been down at church with Maka – students practicing on the organ.
Three students are currently using the organ for lessons and practice. They are being tutored by Katherine Crosier who received a Bachelor of Music from the University of Southern California and a Master of Music from Westminster Choir College. Ms. Crosier is a member of the American Guild of Organists and has been the organist at the Lutheran Church of Honolulu since 1978.

Back on May 15th Adam Pajan, a member of the organ faculty at the University of Oklahoma, played a private recital for members of the congregation and then on May 16th he played the dedicatory recital which was open to the public. What a joyous weekend!

Our next recitals are already planned:

Alcee Chriss on March 12th
Mr. Chriss serves as University Organist and Artist-in-Residence at Wesleyan University.

Katelyn Emerson on March 19th
Organist, lecturer and teacher, Katelyn Emerson is hailed as “one of the worldʻs most promising organists”. (Listvinafélag Hallgrímskirkju [Iceland])

Organ recitals, Sunday worship services thanks to Hank, and students learning the organ – all taking place at All Saintsʻ Church in Kapa`a. The vision has indeed become reality.

-David Murray
'Tis the Season! Christmas Flower Request
We Need Your Help Decorating our Sanctuary for Christmas
The Altar Guild will be decorating the Sanctuary for Christmas with island flowers of red ginger and anthuriums, adorned with greenery. We are kindly asking for donations of the following: 

  • 50 Medium Size Red Ginger
  • 50 Leather leaf or similar Ferns
  • 50 small ti leaf bunches
  • 8 Potted Red Anthurium Plants.

​You may sign up on our website HERE or call Diane Sato at (808) 651-6484 or Lorna Nishi at (808) 651-1573. The flowers/greenery may be dropped off at the Memorial Hall lanai on Wednesday, December 22. Anyone interested in sharing their talents of arranging flowers, please join us on Thursday, December 23, to work on the arrangements. 
Saturday Workday Scheduled
Saturday, December 11th, 8:00 - 10:00AM
We will have an Advent Preparation Workday on Saturday, December 11th, 8:00AM-10:00AM in anticipation of the Christmas season. We will be focused on clearing out the stuff on the Gym stage. We also need volunteers to clean the windows of the sanctuary. Please note: If you have been storing any personal belongings on the gym stage, they should be removed prior to 12/11.

-Buildings and Grounds
This issue's header photo was taken at Tenney Theater this past Sunday, November 21, during a live performance of Anchored, a play about three remarkabe women (Queen Lili'uokalani, Queen Emma, Julian of Norwich) and the deep faith that got them through tragic circumstances. Read more in the featured article below. (Photo by S. Nishioka)
Anchored: Julian, Emma & Lydia...Another Trinity
The Diocese of Hawai'i was delighted to share the premeire performance of the play Anchored, on Sunday, November 21, 2021. The play, which was livestreamed on the Diocese's Facebook page, was held in Tenney Theater at The Cathedral of St. Andrew, to a limited audience (for safety protocols). To see a video of the play and learn more about Anchored, please follow the link below.
Watch the 60th Anniversary of the Full Communion Concordat Between TEC & IFI
In case you missed it, watch the special liturgy celebrating the 60th Anniversary Concordat on the Diocese's Facebook YouTube page HERE. The special event was led by Officiant Obispo Máximo Rhee Timbang (IFI), and the homily delivered by Presiding Bishop Michael Curry. It also featured choirs from four seminaries in the Philippines and The Cathedral of St. Andrew.
No background

Advent Wreath

An Advent Wreath is a circle of greenery, marked by four candles that represent the four Sundays of the season of Advent. An additional candle is lit as each new Sunday is celebrated in Advent. Advent wreaths are used both in churches and in homes for devotional purposes. The candles may be blue, purple, or lavender, depending on local custom. Some Advent wreaths include a white candle in the center known as the “Christ Candle,” which is lit on Christmas Eve.

A Good Day

Kimberly Knowle-Zeller
November 30, 2021
On top of my dresser between pictures of the kids, chapstick and earrings, a small rectangular book sits with a colored pen next to it. The book’s location and the words on the cover – One Line A Day – remind me to stop and pause each night. For six years I’ve been coming to this dresser, pen in hand, to write about my days in only a few lines.

Tonight is no different than every other night.

With the sound of the kids’ noise machine humming through my room, I check the monitor one final time. Charlotte’s scrunched close to the wall. I have a hard time finding Isaac sleeping between stuffed animals and blankets, but one hand with his fingers curled lies atop his head. Shutting my bedroom door, I make my way to the shower. Hot water pounding my body is a luxury after a full day. For these few moments no one demands my attention and I bask in that knowledge. Once I’m showered, dried, and cozy in my pajamas I grab the purple pen and start writing. I only have a few lines to tell about my day and what we all did: the food we ate, the places we visited, the times of reading books on the couch, playtime at the park, and our walks around town.

I first heard about the one line a day journal from Tsh Oxenreider’s Simple podcast. She shared about her recent purchase and commented that by the time she finished the five years her daughter would be a senior in high school. Five years didn’t seem to be so long after all.

When Charlotte was two, I started my own five year journal as a new way to mark and honor the days. At the time our life was filled with playdates with friends, naps, books, and church. A few weeks into writing I found out I was pregnant again. And from then on, the journal became a time capsule of our family of four, the simple and beautiful and hard stories of our lives, captured in a few lines each night.

In our town we have recurring events every year. Now six years in I can flip back to a day and see how we experienced our town’s fair and Christmas market and opening of the pool. In a way, it seems like not much has changed when I flip through the years. We live in the same town with the same people and worship at the same church. Yet, each line represents the growth and experiences that are transforming and enriching our lives. When I write about the kids playing at the playground I can see their growth by their willingness to slide down the slide or climb across the monkey bars. Our times with books on the couch are changing too as Charlotte takes her turn reading to us. Our memories in the kitchen not only include the food and baked goods we’ve made but the times the kids have helped mix, pour, and bake for others. Each night I write about our days and in the writing and remembering I realize I’m praying.

Prayers of gratitude for wet kisses and small hands, reciting the alphabet and hearing stories come to life, walks around town and phone calls with family and friends. Prayers of being fed and feeding others, fresh baked bread and home made meals shared, laughter and meltdowns around the table.

Each day a gift.

When I read through the days turning into years, I see one word more often than others: good.

After all the long nights feeding the baby, the meltdowns over what clothes the toddler would wear, the endless pile of dishes, the worry about a family member’s recent diagnosis, the food to be cooked, the distractions, the constant busyness, and the coordinating of schedules, the days are good.

Because as night comes and I’m ready for bed, the words come naturally.

A good day.

I lived. I loved. I prayed. I played. I wrote. I read. I messed up. I asked for forgiveness. I stumbled. I forgave. I yelled. I lost my patience. I rested.

That’s the beauty of my Five-Year Journal. Writing every night allows me to take a few moments to see my days as they really are – beautiful, hard, hopeful, sad, and joyful.

Every night I come to the dresser and open my journal and am able to see the day for what it is – a gift to experience in this one, precious and fleeting life.

This post originally appeared on the author’s website.
Kimberly Knowle-Zeller is an ordained ELCA pastor, mother of two, and spouse of an ELCA pastor. She lives with her family in Cole Camp, MO. You can read more at her website, follow her work on Facebook, or sign up for her monthly 
Second Week of Advent
Journeying with Family and Friends
As we continue our Advent walk, we invite you to see the Way of Love as a journey that can expand to include family and friends. Mary said “yes” to the call to birth Jesus, God’s Word, into the world and immediately went in haste to share her good news with her cousin, Elizabeth—a four-day journey into the Judean hills. Isn’t that what happens when we hear good news? We are driven to go and tell others. The Way of Love is good news that demands to be shared.

For more Advent resources related to the Way of Love, visit episcopalchurch.org/wayoflove. There, you’ll find links to the full Advent curriculum Journeying the Way of Love, as well as Living the Way of Love in Community, a nine-session curriculum for use anytime.
Sunday, December 5
Read Luke 3:1-6. How does the story of John the Baptist fill your heart with hope?

Monday, December 6
Read or watch your local news. Ask God to open your heart and eyes to ways you can promote reconciliation and healing in your community.

Tuesday, December 7
Read Luke 1:45. Share your faith story with one new person this week. It can be someone you have known for a while who has not heard the faith part of your story.

Wednesday, December 8
Pray along with the Collect for Advent 2, found on page 211 of The Book of Common Prayer. As you are out and about for the rest of this week, notice the people you pass. Ask God to bless them in their lives and work. See how this changes the way you go about your week.
Thursday, December 9
Call or write a letter to a family member with whom you would like to have a closer relationship. Make plans in the new year to chat on the phone or meet over Zoom or in person. Let them know how much you love them and look forward to knowing them better.

Friday, December 10
Where did you struggle this week? Do you have amends or apologies or adjustments you need to make? Ask God to open your heart and mind to those opportunities for reconciliation and growth. Thank God for the gifts of mercy and love, and the courage to make the changes necessary. And then do your best, with God’s help, to make those changes.

Saturday, December 11
Set aside 30 minutes to spend in silence with your best friend today. Sure, it may feel a little weird to be silent on the phone or while sitting next to each other on the couch or across the table. Just give it a try. Make sure to set aside time after your silence to pray for each other and to say thanks for the time of rest.
Published by the Office of Formation of The Episcopal Church, 815 Second Avenue, New York, N.Y. 10017
© 2021 The Domestic and Foreign Missionary Society of the Protestant Episcopal Church in the United States of America. All rights reserved.
Sewanee Vice-Chancellor Leaving Amid Reports He is Biden’s Pick for South Africa Ambassador

David Paulsen
December 1, 2021
University of the South Vice-Chancellor Reuben Brigety is reported to be President Joe Biden’s pick for ambassador to South Africa. Photo: University of the South

[Episcopal News Service] Reuben E. Brigety II, vice-chancellor and president of the University of the South in Sewanee, Tennessee, announced Dec. 1 that he will resign after 18 months on the job, as news reports indicate that President Joe Biden is considering him for ambassador to South Africa.

Brigety, who in June 2020 became the first Black vice-chancellor in Sewanee’s 163-year history, previously served as U.S. ambassador to the African Union from 2013 to 2015 under President Barack Obama. The South Africa-based broadcaster SABC News, citing unnamed sources, reported two weeks ago that Brigety was Biden’s pick for ambassador to South Africa. As of Dec. 1, the Biden administration had not announced a nomination to that position.

Brigety referenced the unconfirmed reports in explaining his departure from the Episcopal-governed university, effective Dec. 21.

“Having concluded that I would accept this nomination if it were offered and that it would be unfair to prolong any uncertainty at the university, I have informed the Board of Regents of this decision and tendered my resignation as vice-chancellor effective at the conclusion of this semester,” Brigety wrote in a letter addressed to the Sewanee community.

The University of the South, commonly known as Sewanee, is owned and governed by 28 Episcopal dioceses in the Southeast, and its School of Theology is one of 10 Episcopal seminaries in the United States. In recent years, Sewanee has grappled with its legacy as an institution founded in 1857 to serve a Southern white slaveholding class, and its long complicity in Jim Crow-era segregation.

Brigety, a native of Jacksonville, Florida, took over as vice-chancellor in the early months of the COVID-19 pandemic at a time when the nation also was gripped by widespread protests against racial injustice, particularly over violence against African Americans by police and white vigilantes. With that as a backdrop, Brigety encouraged Sewanee’s ongoing reexamination of its history while supporting university leaders in their rejection of the school’s past veneration of racist systems, which the Board of Regents outlined in a September 2020 statement.

Brigety, in a letter issued alongside the board’s statement, called it “a pivotal moment in the life of the University of the South,” and he amplified that point in a February 2021 interview with Episcopal News Service.

Brigety noted it wasn’t until 1970 that Sewanee first awarded a degree to an undergraduate Black student, and even today, Black students are only about 3% of its mostly white student body. “We have to do the work to figure out how we make Sewanee a place that is truly welcoming for everybody,” he told ENS.

At the same time, Brigety revealed during a February worship service on campus that vandals had repeatedly attacked the on-campus home where he and his wife and their two teenage sons live – from liquor bottles and other trash left on his lawn to threatening signs posted by his door.

Then in March, university officials launched an investigation into an incident in which some students shouted racist epithets at an opposing team during a lacrosse match hosted by the university, an outburst that Brigety called “inexcusable” in a March 14 letter to the campus community.

“Though this is a painful episode for our community, I am hopeful that the demonstration of our commitment to our values of dignity and decency will help us to heal,” Brigety said.

In the Dec. 1 announcement of his resignation, Brigety expressed pride in “the work we have done together during a consequential time at the university.” He said he had intended to “serve Sewanee for a long time to come” but also felt an “obligation to serve my country if asked by the president of the United States.”

If Brigety is Biden’s pick for ambassador, such a nomination “precludes the candidate’s speaking publicly on most related matters prior to the Senate’s rendering its advice and consent at the end of the confirmation process,” the vice-chancellor said. “Out of deference to the president’s decision-making process, I do not intend to speak further about these matters.”

East Carolina Bishop Robert Skirving, Sewanee’s chancellor, and Reid Thomas Funston Sr., chair of the Board of Regents, issued a response to Brigety’s announcement, praising him for his candor and his service to the university.

“He has established a bold vision for student success, diversity and economic development that charts an ambitious and sustainable path for Sewanee’s future,” Skirving and Funston said. “As regents, we have been proud to embrace and support his vision and initiatives, and we remain fully committed to a path forward that will best position the university to thrive in the future.”

After Brigety leaves on Dec. 21, Sewanee Provost Nancy Berner will take over vice-chancellor duties while the university prepares to search for Brigety’s permanent replacement.

– David Paulsen is an editor and reporter for Episcopal News Service. He can be reached at dpaulsen@episcopalchurch.org.
Convocation Bishop Urges French Authorities to Change Policies After Migrant Deaths in English Channel

Egan Millard
December 1, 2021
A group of more than 40 migrants get on an inflatable dinghy as they leave the coast of northern France to cross the English Channel near Wimereux on Nov. 24, 2021. Photo: Gonzalo Fuentes/Reuters

[Episcopal News Service] The Rt. Rev. Mark Edington, bishop of the Convocation of Episcopal Churches in Europe, is urging French authorities to immediately change some of their policies on the treatment of refugees and migrants in the country after 27 migrants died trying to cross the English Channel on Nov. 24. The deaths shone a spotlight on inhumane conditions for migrants in France, Edington said, arguing that if the French government will not provide basic humanitarian assistance to migrants, churches and other charitable groups must be allowed to do so.

In an open letter issued Nov. 27, Edington said the deaths of the migrants, who drowned when their small boat capsized during a journey from Calais in northern France to England, were “an eminently avoidable tragedy.” One of the reasons migrants are trying to cross the channel, he said, is the hostility of French authorities to their presence in the country, which is compounded by restrictions on the care that churches and charities may provide to migrants. Edington called for an immediate end to those policies while national leaders and the European Union sort out larger issues of migration.

“Our communities stand ready to act in any way consistent with our beliefs and commitments if called upon for assistance by the civil authorities. But while the arguments and posturing continue, we insist that basic humanitarian assistance be made available immediately,” Edington wrote.

The English Channel disaster is the latest episode in a migration crisis that has unfolded over the past decade. From 2011 through mid-2021, 9.2 million people have applied for asylum in Europe (not including Turkey), according to the United Nations. Most come from the Middle East – especially Syria, Afghanistan and Iraq – and African countries beleaguered by war, persecution, famine, economic instability and other humanitarian crises. Many have endured perilous journeys by sea to reach Europe, and many of those die trying – including at least 1,146 in the first half of 2021.
The Paris-based convocation, which includes congregations in seven countries, has made assisting refugees and migrants a central mission in Western Europe. It runs the Joel Nafuma Refugee Center, a day shelter for refugees in Rome, Italy, and parishes have undertaken individual and collective efforts to feed, shelter, resettle and integrate refugees. In recent years, parishes in France and Belgium had focused some of their efforts on the Calais area, where thousands of migrants have ended up in the hopes of reaching the United Kingdom. Episcopalians had been delivering food, medical supplies and other essential goods to the “Jungle,” a massive makeshift refugee camp in Calais that housed about 6,000 people before French authorities dismantled it in 2016.
Migrants look at burning makeshift shelters and tents in the “Jungle” on the third day of their evacuation and transfer to reception centers in France, as part of the dismantlement of the camp in Calais, France, on Oct. 26, 2016. Photo: Philippe Wojazer/Reuters

Since then, Edington said, French authorities’ policies of deterrence have made migrants’ living conditions even worse – and made it much harder to help them. As of October, between 2,000 and 3,000 were living in forests, abandoned buildings and other dangerous conditions in Calais, Dunkirk and the surrounding area, according to Human Rights Watch. Police regularly evict migrants from the land they are staying on, forcing them to move along and often destroying their tents and other supplies. Most Calais encampments experienced this every 48 hours in 2020 and 2021, HRW reported.

Local authorities have severely restricted the ability of churches and charities to assist migrants by enacting laws that ban the distribution of food and water, erecting fences around encampments, and aggressively policing and intimidating aid groups, according to HRW. As of December 2019, authorities have arrested or charged 33 people in France because of their efforts to provide humanitarian aid to migrants, according to the migration research group ReSOMA. ReSOMA identified 171 such people across the European Union, including priests.
American Cathedral in Paris Dean Lucinda Laird, second from left, and former convocation Bishop Pierre Whalon, fourth from left, distribute gifts from the Love in a Box ministry at the Calais camp in December 2015. Photo: Regan du Closel

Thomas Huddleston, one of the convocation’s two “welcoming officers” for migrants, told Episcopal News Service he was not aware of any Episcopalians who had been charged or threatened, but he said the legal situation has limited their ability to provide aid in the area. Though the American Cathedral in Paris and the convocation parishes in Belgium continue to provide direct assistance to migrants in their cities, they no longer distribute supplies in the Calais area.

In his open letter, Edington said the French policies are cruel and unacceptable.

“It is difficult to comprehend governments standing in the way of charitable agencies seeking only to provide for the basic humanitarian needs of those who are suffering, exposed, and starving,” Edington wrote.

“As both citizens and Christians, we are bound to call on all governments to take immediate steps toward permitting both faith-based and secular charitable agencies seeking to provide humanitarian assistance to have access to the places vulnerable populations gather, and to offer what support they can without qualification or need for accreditation. A way must be found to place the basic human needs of the suffering first in the calculus of interests—at least among governments that claim to be based on an irreducible respect for the basic rights of each human being.”

The inhospitable conditions and policies for migrants in France are the primary reasons they end up in Calais in the first place, Edington and Huddleston said; they gather there in the hope of reaching the United Kingdom, believing they might receive better treatment there. The deaths of the 27 migrants in the English Channel might have been prevented if their living conditions were better in France, Edington told ENS.

At the very least, the French government needs to “not act in such ways as to make their suffering all the worse and bring them to decide that the desperate gamble of a 34-kilometer journey in a tiny raft across water that would cause death by hypothermia within five minutes is better than staying in France,” he said.
A sign hanging on the fence outside a refugee camp in Brussels, Belgium, in 2015 asks the question “What if it were you?” Photo: Sunny Hallanan

“The majority of refugees felt that England would be a better place to settle,” said the Rev. Sunny Hallanan, rector of All Saints’ Episcopal Church in Waterloo, Belgium. She is also the vicar of the St. Esprit mission in Mons, Belgium, near the French-Belgian border, which serves primarily Burundian refugees and asylum-seekers. She and her parishioners have been helping refugees and asylum-seekers in Belgium, where there are fewer restrictions on humanitarian aid, hoping that they might stay there rather than trying to get to Calais and England.

“We tried to convince refugees to stay here when possible,” she told ENS. “Unfortunately – perhaps because they speak English, not French or Dutch – there are still so many who continue to risk their lives to try to go to England.”
The Rev. Sunny Hallanan volunteers at a refugee camp in Maximilian Park in Brussels. Photo: Felicity Handford

Conflicts among European nations and the U.K. over how to handle the migration crisis in Europe have worsened the situation, Edington and Huddleston said. While governments blame each other and refuse to take responsibility for people within their borders, suffering and death continue.
“The British and French governments are just pointing at each other, arguing that each is the one responsible for rescuing people at sea, for trying to offer some type of safe house and legal pathways,” Huddleston told ENS. “That has just been exacerbated by Brexit and COVID. So what you see generally in Europe is governments on both sides of borders reneging on their international responsibilities.”
“France argues that it is only a waypoint for those seeking asylum in the United Kingdom. The United Kingdom argues that France ought to be doing more to intercept these refugees before their desperation leads them to take to sea. While these interminable arguments provide grist for the media, human lives are lost as though they meant nothing,” Edington wrote in his open letter. “We do not presume to advise the governments of our nations on how to share responsibility for the plight of those fleeing war, violence, despair, and corruption. We are clear, however, that they hold this responsibility—for the same reason that we all hold a responsibility to the least, the last, and the lost among us.”

– Egan Millard is an assistant editor and reporter for Episcopal News Service. He can be reached at emillard@episcopalchurch.org.
Church of England Releases First Ever Christmas Single
‘At the Heart of Christmas’

December 1, 2021
[Church of England] The Church of England has released a Christmas single as part of a campaign to encourage more people to hear the real Christmas story through their local church.

The single, a new carol version of “In the Bleak Midwinter” by one of the country’s top young composers, Rebecca Dale, will form the soundtrack to this year’s Church of England Christmas campaign.

The single is released on all streaming platforms from Dec. 1 onwards. It can now be streamed or downloaded online

“At the Heart of Christmas” is the Church of England’s theme for Advent and Christmas 2021.

Local churches all over the country will be welcoming their communities – in-person and online – to celebrate and share the good news of Christ’s birth with special services and events, supported by a wide range of national resources.

IN BRIEF . . .

These news briefs were featured in previous issues of "The Epistle"
From The Epistle, November 26, 2021
2021 Holy Sovereigns' Celebration
Sunday, November 21st
All Saints' Episcopal Church held its annual celebration of the lives and accomplishments of King Kamehameha IV and Queen Emma - the Holy Sovereigns - on Sunday, November 21st. Mahalo nui loa to all who made this celebration a great success!

To enjoy the Pū, procession, and hula, please click on the link below.

Vestry Meeting Synopsis
October 24, 2021
Finance Committee: Nothing new to report.

Solar Panel Roof Project: Work completed, awaiting County inspection. Raised more than enough money to cover the project.

Columbarium Termite Treatment: Tenting arranged for December 7th-8th.

Audio Mics in Sanctuary: Looking into improving audio for recordings and filming.

Organ Committee: Vestry authorized setting up an Organ Committee to deal with working out financial, booking, and logistical arrangements for organ concerts.

Keiki Chapel: Kahu has started a monthly Keiki Chapel for the Preschool keiki in the church Sanctuary.

Widsom of Kalaupapa: Presentations will take place on Mondays November 1st and 8th, 5pm-6:30pm, in the Sanctuary.

Project Vision Mobile Shower Station: Continuing onsite every 1st and 3rd Thursday of the month, subject to renewal decision at our next Vestry meeting.

Sanctuary Carpet Runner Removal: Vestry approved the removal of the sanctuary carpet runner, with a donor offering to cover the cost.

New Candle Stands and Snuffers: Vestry approved ordering new Sanctuary candle stands and snuffers, to be paid from the restricted account for worship supplies.
A Commitment to Respond to God's Generosity 
On All Saints' Sunday, Bill Caldwell presented his view of Stewardship and the Church budget. To hear his take on this subject, please click on the video link below.
Who Do You Call?

Contact information for All Saints' Ministries and Outreach

Please submit your story ideas to the Epistle Staff at news@allsaintskauai.org.
If you would like to serve as an All Saints' usher, please contact Cami at church@allsaintskauai.org.

There is an on-going need for travel sized toiletries and canned goods so these items will be accepted every week. As always, monetary donations are gratefully accepted. Leave them in the red wagon outside the sanctuary

Any of our All Saints' kupuna who need assistance with grocery shopping can contact Carolyn Morinishi at church@allsaintskauai.org to set up a delivery.

If any ministry has an unmet need, reach out to put it in the All Saints' Virtual Swap Meet and it will be published in the Epistle. Contact Bill Caldwell at news@allsaintskauai.org.

Whenever you have a need for support, please call (650) 691-8104 and leave a voice mail. The system will immediately forward the information to the Pastoral Care Committee who will respond to each request. If you prefer, you may send an electronic pastoral care request via email to pastoralcare@allsaintskauai.org.

Individuals who want to participate in the Prayer Chain Ministry must re-enroll to continue receiving the email communications. To re-enroll, please visit the newly established Pastoral Care web page or contact the Church Office at (808) 822-4267.

Prayer requests will now be submitted online or by contacting the Church Office at (808) 822-4267.

Names can be added to the Prayers of the People petitions by using the Prayer Chain Request form or by contacting the Church Office at (808) 822-4267. Names will remain in the Prayers of the People for a maximum of four Sundays before a name must be resubmitted.