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The Last Sunday after the Epiphany
February 23, 2020

7:30 a.m. Morning Prayer
8:00 a.m. Said Mass Rite I

Nursery Available from 8:45 a.m. - 12:45 p.m.

9:00 a.m. Sung Mass
11:00 a.m. Solemn High Mass

Join us for fellowship in Wheeler Hall
after each Mass
Transfiguration, Central panel in a triptych by David Gerard, 1520, Church of Our Lady, Bruges
One thing have I asked of the Lord, one thing I seek;
   that I may dwell in the house of the Lord
         all the days of my life;
To behold the fair beauty of the Lord  
   and to seek him in his temple.
Psalm 27:5-6

Dear people of Ascension,
    Ministry at the altar is not for everyone. But some prefer it to worship in the pews. And some have other reasons – personal history, a way to serve, camaraderie – for being ‘up there.’ Many who serve at the altar and find it meaningful, for whatever reason, commend trying it.
    We could use at least a few more acolytes at this time. If ever you’ve been curious, please show up for one of two orientations and trainings over the coming weekend. The times are indicated to the right, along with the promise of pizza to follow.
    I’m using acolytes here as an umbrella term. ‘Acolytes’ at a Solemn High Mass normally include a crucifer and thurifer, torch-bearers and an emcee, and, yes, a role we call acolytes. A banner-carrier and others may be added for feasts.
    Typically one begins altar service as crucifer, arguably the simplest role. Unless one has had a lot of comparable experience in another church, the emcee and thurifer roles would be out of reach for a time, after one served in and mastered other roles.
    Lay persons also serve at the altar for the 8:00 a.m. and 9:00 a.m. masses on Sundays and weekday masses, as well as officiating for Morning Prayer and Evening Prayer most days of the week. In these instances, the liturgies are simpler and fewer souls assume more roles.
    This weekend’s trainings will mainly focus on service at the Solemn High Mass and will be straightforward enough for newcomers. We’ll also add to the knowledge of those already serving, answer questions and remain flexible enough to respond to your particular interests. I hope to see you there.

Three more things about acolytes …
+ Our acolytes serve and are welcomed in all body shapes, heights and sizes. The average age, I’m guessing is somewhere in the 40s or 50s but some are quite a bit younger or older. We welcome those of any age, race, gender or sexual orientation.
+ You may direct your questions to Mary Beth Hwang or Enrique Vilaseco . They would especially like to hear from you if you can’t make a training this weekend but are interested.
+ If you intend to take part in a training, please RSVP to Mary Beth. We want to get enough pizza.
Top row: Christopher Poore, Joseph ‘Joey’ Keegin, Clare Kemmerer
Bottom row: William Pounds, Taylor Zimmerman, Fr. Bob Petite (clergy support)
March 1  - “Broken Icons: The Damaged Goods of Lenten Practice”
- Christopher Poore
For many of us, Lent begins with a renewed commitment to various spiritual practices—fasting, prayer, and almsgiving. But is our theology expansive enough to account for how these practices can go terribly wrong? We’ll explore how Anglican theologians grapple with the fact that promised spiritual goods can sometimes inflict unexpected harm, and we’ll discuss how accounting for these harms can actually help us to practice Lent with greater mindfulness and honesty. 
Christopher Poore   is a Regenstein Fellow at the University of Chicago Divinity School, where he is pursuing an MA in Theology. He began attending the Church of the Ascension in 2018, often with friends from Hyde Park and with his wife, the poet Gina Franco. He is an associate poetry editor for Narrative Magazine, and his own writing has appeared in America Magazine, St. Vladimir's Theological Quarterly, and Denver Quarterly.

  March 8  - "Forgiveness, Christian and Otherwise"
- Joseph ‘Joey’ Keegin
March 15  - "Naught Else But the Yearning of the Soul: Image & Imagination in Early Women's Devotional Practices”
- Clare Kemmerer
March 22  - “Fear & Idols”
- William Pounds
March 29  - “Suffering, Love, and Surrender”
​- Taylor Zimmerman

Father Shawn Evelyn, who lives in our Ascension coach house with his wife, Mother Anna Broadbent, has been called to serve as priest-in-charge of St. Edmund’s Church at 6105 South Michigan Ave., Chicago, starting after Easter. Click here to check out St. Edmund’s website home page and their introduction of Reverend Shawn. Please congratulate Shawn if you see him around and keep him and the people of St. Edmund’s in prayers as they begin a new chapter together.  

My sermon from this past Sunday, the Sixth Sunday after the Epiphany, may be read here .  
Ash Wednesday,
February 26th
The Last Judgment , fresco at the Arena Chapel, Padua, by Giotto, 1306
7:10 a.m.
Morning Prayer

7:30 a.m. & 12:05 p.m.
Said Mass with Imposition of Ashes

6:30 p.m.
Evening Prayer

7:00 p.m.
The Penitential Order for Ash Wednesday
and Solemn High Mass

with the Choir of the Ascension singing
Johann Michael Haydn (1737-1806)  Missa Quadragesimalis , MH 552
Alessandro Scarlatti (1660-1725)  Exaltabo te Domine
James MacMillan (b. 1959)  Qui meditabitur  (2010), from  The Strathclyde Motets

This coming Sunday: please bring palms  that you may have at home or elsewhere from past years' Palm Sunday processions. We will burn them on the eve of Ash Wednesday for the ashes to be used in the Ash Wednesday liturgies.
Wednesday, February 19
Simeon of Jerusalem, Bishop and Martyr

Evening Prayer, 6:10 p.m.
Said Mass, 6:30 p.m.

Saturday, February 22
The Chair of St. Peter

Morning Prayer, 9:30 a.m.
Healing Mass, 10:00 a.m.

The schedule of Sunday Readings, Celebrants, Preachers, Lectors, Acolytes, Ushers, Hymnody, Choral and Organ Repertoire for Sunday, February 23, 2020  may be found by clicking here . More information on the Choral repertoire  may be found by clicking here . The Clergy Rota  for this week's and upcoming masses  may be found here .

Please remember these people in your daily prayers
Geoffrey Wainwright, Mary Lou Devens, Charley Taylor, August 'Augie' Alonzo, Ted Long, Jim Berger, Ethel Martin, Yuka Asai, Dean Pineda, Carnola Malone, Charlene MacDougal, Jack Johnston, Patricia Johnston, Stewart Marks, Char Yurema, Bob Sparacio, Canon Edgar Wells, Nicholas Carl, Joshua, Ellie, Catriana Patriarca, Carmen Castro, Mary Drell, Jim Lo Bello, Judy Cook, Steve Waltz, Lillian Alexander

During this time of transition , the Standing Committee of the Diocese of Chicago asks for prayers for the church, our diocese, our clergy and lay leaders, our retiring bishop, and those who may be discerning a call to become the Thirteenth Bishop of Chicago.

P rayers for the departed
John Marston,  uncle of John West
Heriberto Vilaseco , father of Enrique Vilaseco

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.
Seems right to share a poem with reference to an acolyte; this one also explores and wonders about the origins and shape of one soul’s beliefs.   – Fr. Raymond +

   A Story Can Change Your Life
                   Frank Everwine

On the morning she became a young widow,
my grandmother, startled by a sudden shadow,
looked up from her work to see a hawk turn
her prized rooster into a cloud of feathers.
That same moment, halfway around the world
in a Minnesota mine, her husband died,
buried under a ton of rockfall.
She told me this story sixty years ago.
I don’t know if it’s true but it ought to be.
She was a hard old woman, and though she knelt
on Sundays when the acolyte’s silver bell
announced the moment of Christ’s miracle,
it was the darker mysteries she lived by:
shiver-cry of an owl, black dog by the roadside,
a tapping at the door and nobody there.
The moral of the story was plain enough:
miracles become a burden and require a priest
to explain them. With signs, you only need
to keep your wits about you and place your trust
in a shadow world that lets you know hard luck
and grief are coming your way. And for that
—so the story goes—any day will do.

   - from Ploughshares, Winter 2012-13, Vol. 38, No. 4
Church of the Ascension acolytes, ca. 1920
The Very Rev. Patrick Raymond, Rector

Susan Schlough, Treasurer

Br. Nathanael Deward Rahm BSG, Parish Office