Detail from the Altarpiece of the Marshal's Chapel, Seville cathedral

Sunday, February 3
Feast of t he Presentation ( transferred )

7:30 a.m. Morning Prayer 
8:00 a.m. Said Mass (Rite I)
9:00 a.m. Sung Mass 
11:00 a.m. Choral Mass 
Giovanni Pierluigi da Palestrina
(c. 1525-1594) Missa Ave regina coelorum

4:00 p.m. Choral Evensong
Owain Park (b. 1993) Trinity Fauxbourdons (2016)

"Simeon took him in his arms and praised God, saying, ...'a  light for revelation  
to the Gentiles and for glory to your people Israel.'"  Luke 2:32

The Rosary will be said on Sunday following the 11 a.m. Choral Mass.
All are welcome to join.

This Week at Ascension + January 30, 2019


From the Rector
Also from the Rector
Sharing Lunch, Sharing Blessings: Feb. 13th
Ascension Book Group: January and February
This Sunday at Ascension
The Parish Prayer List
Approved Vestry Minutes Online
The Last Word


Our Food Pantry

"Lift up and stretch out your hands, not to heaven, but to the poor;
for if you stretch forth your hands to the poor, you have reached the summit of heaven,  but if you lift up your hands in prayer without sharing with the poor, it is worth nothing."

"If you cannot find Christ in the beggar at the church door, you will not find him in the chalice."

                     - Saint John Chrysostom

Dear people of Ascension,

   Upcoming is the first Saturday of the month, and at Ascension that means food pantry. The focus seems right for this letter not only because it's timely but also because of media attention, during the present bitter cold, on the acute plight of the homeless. In the even that you are unaware ...

Our 150 guests (or so) every month do include some who are bona fide homeless, living on the streets. But many if not most are those on limited fixed incomes who live in subsidized rent buildings near Ascension.

The second population described above is particularly well served by our main pantry offering: a grocery sack full of non-perishable food items, many requiring a kitchen for preparation. Examples are oatmeal and pasta. In addition, we offer a classic brown bag lunch (typically a bologna and cheese sandwich, a banana and more) meant to satisfy immediate hunger.

Recent pantry innovations have included a separate distribution of toiletries and one regular volunteer who had an opportunity to distribute some nearly new women's coats. Another regular volunteer has on occasion served coffee to guests waiting in the garden.

Most of the financial support for the pantry comes from Ascension's operating budget. Personal contributions may also be made at any time.

If we imagine that it 'just runs itself' we're mistaken. The continuous support of both old and new volunteers, and the informed support of the Vestry and all parishioners, is crucial to the ongoing success of our pantry ministry.

   I wonder if our sense of shared pantry mission might be elevated if, instead of asking 'Should I volunteer for the pantry?' each of us asked 'What is my particular contribution to the pantry?'


Thanks to all who took part in Sunday's annual meeting and in particular those who made themselves available for service and who were elected as Warden and Vestry members:
Gary Alexander (warden), Marilyn Evans, Lynette Hector, Patrick Johnston, David Reeves and Amber Zelazny. The first meeting of the 2019 Vestry has been scheduled for Tuesday, February 19, at 7 pm.

The status of our sanctuary arch tuck pointing project is captured in three images below, from left to right: 1) Up goes the scaffolding; 2) workers at work, removing mortar brick by brick; and 3) upon removing the Michael shrine, we were reminded of the memorial plaque normally hidden by the shrine and prie-dieu. It reads:
"To the Glory of God in Honor of Blessed Michael the Archangel and In Loving Memory of Edward Allan Larrabee, Priest and Doctor, this statue is erected by the guild of all souls of which he was superior from 1895 to 1924 in this parish church of which he was Rector from 1884 to 1909. Grant Him, O Lord, Eternal Rest."

And then there's this ...

No, sadly it's not a halo. It's a significant crack that's been discovered in the peak of the sanctuary arch and that was not visible until the scaffolding went up last week. Touchstone Solutions, contracted for tuck pointing and plaster repair, is preparing proposals on a range of solutions ... stay tuned.

Regarding the Vestry's January 22 resolution regarding women clergy at Ascension, y ou may click anywhere on this invitation in the event that you missed and wish to read the report from last week's newsletter.

My sermon/annual meeting address from this past Sunday may be read by clicking here.

You are invited to join our next adventure in hearty and tasty eating on  Wednesday, February 13 (2nd Wednesday)   following the noontime Mass.  The menu features a St. Valentine's, early Mardi Gras theme which includes jambalaya with rice, jazzy vegetable salad, soft rolls and butter, heart-shaped sugar cookies, and chocolate!  DiAnne Walsh and Cheryl Peterson will be doing the cooking, and they promise that everything will be flavorful but not overly spicy or salty.  Desserts, on the other hand, will be full sweetness (in case you are thinking of giving up sugar for Lent)!

As everyone thinks about sharing blessings for our group discussion in February, I would like to suggest the theme: "Words and Events of Inspiration." During the cold and sometimes dreary months of winter, we often hibernate--hunkering down in our cozy living spaces, venturing out only as necessary.  So what keeps you growing, dreaming, discovering new joys, thinking about the future, especially your spiritual future?  Is there a particular proverb, quote, poem, prayer, or scripture passage that serves to inspire you?  Is there a memorable event in your spiritual formation that you count on to keep you moving forward?  Is there a noteworthy discipline/routine that helps you stay focused and centered?  Come join the Sharing Blessings group for some mid-winter inspiration and a warming lunch.  And invite a friend to join us and enjoy this social time together!  

Any questions can be directed to Cheryl Peterson, 773-322-7995.  

For January and February the Ascension Book Group will read  The Pillars of the Earth   (1989) by Ken Follett (b. 1949).  In January we will read the Prologue, Part I, and Part II. In February we will read Part III - Part VI. 


The  Sunday Lectionary readings Schedules of Acolytes, Lectors & Ushers as well as Hymnody, Motets and Organ Voluntaries for  Sunday, February 3, 2019  may be found by clicking  here The Lector's Pronunciation Guide may be found here .


Please remember these people in your daily prayers
Geoffrey Wainwright, Fr. John Graham, Dorothy Murray, Mary Lou Devens, Michael Milano, Thomas Holden, Brenton Boitse, Charley Taylor, August 'Augie' Alonzo, Regina Krusas, James Krusas, Sr., Kenvert Samuel, Ted Long, Jim Berger, Ethel Martin, Rachel Barton Pine, Demos Kukeas, Norb Bragiel
Prayers for the departed
Rest eternal grant unto them, O Lord: and let light perpetual shine upon them. May their souls and the souls of all the faithful departed, through the mercy of God, rest in peace. Amen.

The Approved Minutes of Vestry meetings are now available online to parishioners who request the link.  If you would like Internet access to the Approved Vestry Minutes, please email the  Church Office and request the link. 
Once you access the web page, you can read all recent Approved Vestry Minutes.  In addition, if you click on the subscribe button at the top right, you will be given email notice whenever a new set of Approved Minutes is added. 

     The Blizzard
  by Phillis Levin
Now that the worst is over, they predict
Something messy and difficult, though not
Life-threatening. Clearly we needed
To stock up on water and candles, making
Tureens of soup and things that keep
When electricity fails and phone lines fall.
Igloos rise on air conditioners, gargoyles
Fly and icicles shatter. Frozen runways,
Lines in markets, and paralyzed avenues
Verify every fear. But there is warmth
In this sudden desire to sleep,
To surrender to our common condition
With joy, watching hours of news
Devoted to weather. People finally stop
To talk to each other-the neighbors
We didn't know were always here.
Today they are ready for business,
Armed with a new vocabulary,
Casting their saga in phrases as severe
As last night's snow: damage assessment,
Evacuation, emergency management,
The shift of the wind matters again,
And we are so simple, so happy to hear
The scrape of a shovel next door.
From Mercury, Penguin, 2001.

Fr. Patrick Raymond,

Susan Schlough,      

Parish Office