The Twentieth Sunday after Pentecost
Oct 18, 2020
Dear People of Ascension,

You will want to tune in to our Zoom service a few minutes early this Sunday and in the coming weeks. We are delighted that Dr. Keene will now begin our worship with an organ prelude! There are some other changes in our music starting this Sunday. Here's what Dr. Keene says about it:

 "During these past many months with our 11am Zoom services we have been hearing hymns recorded with piano and four singers from their own separate homes, and edited together. (Thank you to Hai-Ting Chinn for the editing!) And the anthems have been choral music from the many recordings of Voices of Ascension. Starting this Sunday, we are pleased to announce, we will have an organ Prelude beginning around 4 minutes before 11am, two hymns with 9 singers from our own church choir and Dr. Keene at the organ. And also an anthem with the nine singers and organ, all recorded in our church! 

This Sunday’s music was recorded last Sunday afternoon. Everyone was under carefully-planned safety procedures. The singers were placed 15 feet apart, front and back, and 8 feet apart to their sides. They all were wearing special singers’ masks. Dr. Keene conducted the anthem from half-way down the center aisle, and organist David Enlow was the fabulous accompanist. This very first attempt went swimmingly, even though the front row of singers were 30 feet in front of the rear row! You’ll notice how completely together our wonderful singers are. 

Further experimenting with the placement of singers will take place, particularly in regard to the hymns. For this first attempt the men were 35 feet away from the microphones and sound distant. Eventually the best position will be found. But we’re mighty glad to have our wonderful singers back – and the Manton Memorial Organ - all in the glorious acoustic which is our beloved church!"

I'm so grateful to Dennis and our singers for the artistry and devotion they bring to our worship. It will be great to hear them again!

How to Join the Service
From your computer, laptop, pad, smart phone, or other device, click this link:
If you do not have a device with a camera, you can still join with your phone by dialing the following number and enter the meeting ID: 929-205-6099 Meeting ID: 322 793 633

All of our online services, with their links, can be found on our public calendar, and are listed below.
Click this link to read up on some best practices for Zoom meetings.
Organ Prelude
10:55 a.m.
Please join us at 10:55 for the organ prelude

Antiphon III: I am Black but Comely
Marcel Dupré (1886-1971)
Worship Service
11:00 a.m.
All gather online

The service begins with the sound of a bell
and your microphones will be muted.

Gregorian Chant

#472 Hope of the world, thou Christ of great compassion (Donne secours)
Please join in the singing of the hymn.
Hope of the world, thou Christ of great compassion,
speak to our fearful hearts by conflict rent.
Save us, thy people, from consuming passion,
who by our own false hopes and aims are spent.

Hope of the world, God’s gift from highest heaven,
bringing to hungry souls the bread of life,
still let thy Spirit unto us be given
to heal earth’s wounds and end her bitter strife.

Hope of the world, afoot on dusty highways,
showing to wandering souls the path of light,
walk thou beside us lest the tempting byways
lure us away from thee to endless night.

Hope of the world, who by thy cross didst save us
from death and dark despair, from sin and guilt,
we render back the love thy mercy gave us;
take thou our lives, and use them as thou wilt.

Hope of the world, O Christ, o’er death victorious,
who by this sign didst conquer grief and pain,
we would be faithful to thy gospel glorious;
thou art our Lord! Thou dost for ever reign!

Presider Blessed be God: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.
People And blessed be his kingdom, now and for ever. Amen.
Collect of the Day
Almighty and everlasting God, in Christ you have revealed your glory among the nations: Preserve the works of your mercy, that your Church throughout the world may persevere with steadfast faith in the confession of your Name; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.
The Lessons
Reader: Barbara Matovu

Moses said to the Lord, “See, you have said to me, ‘Bring up this people’; but you have not let me know whom you will send with me. Yet you have said, ‘I know you by name, and you have also found favor in my sight.’ Now if I have found favor in your sight, show me your ways, so that I may know you and find favor in your sight. Consider too that this nation is your people.” He said, “My presence will go with you, and I will give you rest.” And he said to him, “If your presence will not go, do not carry us up from here. For how shall it be known that I have found favor in your sight, I and your people, unless you go with us? In this way, we shall be distinct, I and your people, from every people on the face of the earth.” The Lord said to Moses, “I will do the very thing that you have asked; for you have found favor in my sight, and I know you by name.” Moses said, “Show me your glory, I pray.” And he said, “I will make all my goodness pass before you, and will proclaim before you the name, ‘The Lord’; and I will be gracious to whom I will be gracious, and will show mercy on whom I will show mercy. But,” he said, “you cannot see my face; for no one shall see me and live.” And the Lord continued, “See, there is a place by me where you shall stand on the rock; and while my glory passes by I will put you in a cleft of the rock, and I will cover you with my hand until I have passed by; then I will take away my hand, and you shall see my back; but my face shall not be seen.”

Psalm 99 (St. Helena Psalter)

God reigns; let the people tremble; *
   God is enthroned upon the cherubim;
   let the earth shake.
God is great in Zion *
   and is high above all peoples.
Let them confess God’s Name, which is great and awesome; *
   God is the Holy One.
“O mighty Ruler, lover of justice,
you have established equity; *
   you have executed justice and righteousness in Jacob.”
We proclaim your greatness, O God,
and fall down before your footstool; *
   you are the Holy One.
Moses and Aaron among your priests,
and Samuel among those who call upon your Name, *
   they called upon you, and you answered them.
You spoke to them out of the pillar of cloud; *
   they kept your testimonies and the decree that you gave them.
“O Holy God, you answered them indeed; *
   you were a God who forgave them,
   yet punished them for their evil deeds.”
Proclaim the greatness of our God
and worship on God’s holy hill, *
   for our God is the Holy One.

Reader: Rusty Moore

Paul, Silvanus, and Timothy, To the church of the Thessalonians in God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ: Grace to you and peace. We always give thanks to God for all of you and mention you in our prayers, constantly remembering before our God and Father your work of faith and labor of love and steadfastness of hope in our Lord Jesus Christ. For we know, brothers and sisters beloved by God, that he has chosen you, because our message of the gospel came to you not in word only, but also in power and in the Holy Spirit and with full conviction; just as you know what kind of persons we proved to be among you for your sake. And you became imitators of us and of the Lord, for in spite of persecution you received the word with joy inspired by the Holy Spirit, so that you became an example to all the believers in Macedonia and in Achaia. For the word of the Lord has sounded forth from you not only in Macedonia and Achaia, but in every place your faith in God has become known, so that we have no need to speak about it. For the people of those regions report about us what kind of welcome we had among you, and how you turned to God from idols, to serve a living and true God, and to wait for his Son from heaven, whom he raised from the dead-- Jesus, who rescues us from the wrath that is coming.
The Holy Gospel of Our Lord Jesus Christ According to Matthew

The Pharisees went and plotted to entrap Jesus in what he said. So they sent their disciples to him, along with the Herodians, saying, “Teacher, we know that you are sincere, and teach the way of God in accordance with truth, and show deference to no one; for you do not regard people with partiality. Tell us, then, what you think. Is it lawful to pay taxes to the emperor, or not?” But Jesus, aware of their malice, said, “Why are you putting me to the test, you hypocrites? Show me the coin used for the tax.” And they brought him a denarius. Then he said to them, “Whose head is this, and whose title?” They answered, “The emperor’s.” Then he said to them, “Give therefore to the emperor the things that are the emperor’s, and to God the things that are God’s.” When they heard this, they were amazed; and they left him and went away.
The Rev. Posey Krakowsky
O How Amiable
Ralph Vaughan Williams (1872-1958)

O how amiable are thy dwellings, thou Lord of hosts! My soul hath a desire and longing to enter into the courts of the Lord. My heart and my flesh rejoice in the living God. Yea, the sparrow hath found her a house and the swallow a nest where she may lay her young: even thy altars, O Lord of hosts, my King, and my God. Blessed are they that dwell in thy house. They will be alway praising thee. The glorious majesty of the Lord our God be upon us; prosper thou the work of our hands upon us. O prosper thou our handiwork. O God, our help in ages past, our hope for years to come, our shelter from the stormy blast, and our eternal home.
Prayers of the People - New Zealand Prayer Book, Second Form

Please send your own prayers through the chat function on Zoom, and the leader will read them at the end of the intercessions.
God of heaven and earth, through Jesus Christ you promise to hear us when we pray to you in faith with thanksgiving.

We pray for one another, for our families and friends, through whom we learn to love and to be loved. Thank you for all who care for us. Give us grace to serve Christ by serving our neighbors and our community, loving others as he loves us.


We thank you for the unfailing love you hold out to everyone in Jesus Christ. Comfort and heal those in sorrow, need, sickness or any other trouble, especially Robert, Ed, Janet, Mary and Tom, Ellen, Joseph, Brielle, Lucas, Holly, Allejandro and Jesus, Nancy, Barbara, Dorothy, Stewart, Patricia, Judith, Marco, Tina, Hannah, Jurek, Alice, Stacy and Jonathan, Michael, Lisa, Seth, Tom, Mike, Jennifer, Liz, and Abigail. Give them courage and hope in their distress, and bless those who minister to them.


We remember with gratitude your many gifts to us in creation and the rich heritage of this land. Help us and people everywhere to share with justice and peace the resources of the earth. We pray for the people of Nagorno-Karabakh, those affected by hurricane Delta, and by the fires in California and the Pacific Northwest. We pray for all laboring to end ​racism and white supremacy and establish racial justice in our country. We pray for all seeking elective office, for all who vote, and for the integrity of our electoral process. Give wisdom to those in authority among us and to all leaders of the nations.


We pray for your Church throughout the world, thanking you for all who serve Christ and his kingdom. By your Spirit strengthen your people for their work and witness in the world. Unite us in your truth and love, that we who confess your name may also reflect your glory.


We pray for all affected by COVID-19: for the frightened and the sick, for the dying and those who mourn. We pray for all who have lost jobs and livelihood as a result of this pandemic. We pray for all healthcare workers, especially Scarlett, Madonna, Trudie, Nancy, Anna, Sarah, Endine, Terese, and AJ, for all whose labor supports our common life; for those developing treatment and a vaccine, for those charged with making decisions about public health and public policy and for all who are reopening, that they may care for one another in wisdom and safety.


We remember with thanksgiving all who have died in Christ and those whose faith is known to you alone, especially Brendan M. Burns, Sherrie Irene Kesselman, and the more that 215,000 Americans who have died of COVID-19, as well as others around the world. We rejoice at the faithful witness of your saints in every age, praying that we may enter with them into the unending joy of your heavenly kingdom.


We offer you our other prayers, and our thanksgivings for all the blessings of this life.

Prayers received on Zoom chat are read by the intercessor.


Merciful God, you look with compassion on all who turn to you. Hear the prayers of your people.

The priest adds a concluding collect.
The Lord's Prayer

Our Father, who art in heaven,
  hallowed be thy Name,
  thy kingdom come,
  thy will be done,
    on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread.
And forgive us our trespasses,
  as we forgive those
    who trespass against us.
And lead us not into temptation,
  but deliver us from evil.
For thine is the kingdom,
  and the power, and the glory,
  for ever and ever. Amen.
#488 Be thou my vision, O Lord of my heart (Slane)
Please join in the singing of the hymn.
Be thou my vision, O Lord of my heart;
all else be nought to me, save that thou art-
thou my best thought, by day or by night,
waking or sleeping, thy presence my light.

Be thou my wisdom, and thou my true word;
I ever with thee and thou with me, Lord;
thou my great Father; thine own may I be;
thou in me dwelling, and I one with thee.

High King of heaven, when victory is won,
may I reach heaven’s joys, bright heaven’s Sun!
Heart of my heart, whatever befall,
still be my vision, O Ruler of all.

The people respond
Thanks be to God.
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Coffee Hour

Pour yourself a cup of coffee, tea, or your favorite juice, grab a slice of banana bread, piece of fruit, or a peanut butter & jelly sandwich, and feel free to "hang out" with us online to chat!
Forum: Meet our Seminarian - This Sunday, October 18- Please join us after the 11 a.m. service this Sunday, October 18, to hear from our new seminarian, Linda Istad Brandt, a second year Seminarian at General Theological Seminary. She comes from a life time of public health nursing. In the introduction, you can expect to hear her 70 year long saga of family roots which informs and sends her from the Diocese of Minnesota on a path toward ordination. You will hear about her call and her hopes and dreams to serve the marginalized when she returns to Minnesota in May. This story includes St. Vincent’s Hospital NYC, Russia, and the Rural AIDS Action Network.
For Your Daily Prayers - "Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you." (1 Thessalonians 5:16-18) During this time of global crisis and personal anxiety, we offer you this prayer form to include in your daily prayers.
Sunday Meditation with Prayers & Music
is available on our Facebook page:

Stay Connected in Prayer. Join us each weeknight at 5:30 for Evening Prayer and discussion. Click here to join. To call in (voice, no camera), dial 929-205-6099; the meeting ID is 770 597 201.
Thank You to the Production Crew! There are countless people behind the scenes that make our Sunday worship happen, and we would like to offer special thanks to three very key people: John Thompson (Zoom host and manager), Vin Knight (Facebook Meditation compiler), and Hai-Ting Chinn (our wrangler of singers and sound mixer). Hat's off to these three amazing people!
The Church is open for prayer and meditation on Tuesdays and Fridays from 12-3 pm. Masks, contact information and use of hand sanitizer is required for all guests. We are very excited about opening our space again. The garden is open every day from 9-5, and is a lovely place to enjoy quiet and the beauty of creation.
Racial Justice Discussion Group: Meet Ibram X. Kendi
Thursday, October 22, 7:00-9:00 p.m.
Via Zoom

Participate with hundreds of other Episcopalians in an exclusive online event as
Ibram X. Kendi,
author of
How to Be An Antiracist
discusses his journey of discovery, answers your questions, and reflects on the nationwide movement toward antiracism that his writings have helped to fuel.
Registration is required. The number of participants is limited, so if you are interested, please register soon.

Click here to read the online flyer.
All Saints Memorial Names - For centuries, Christians have commemorated those who, having professed faith in the living Christ in days past, now have entered into the nearer presence of our Lord. We will celebrate the Feast of All Saints on Sunday, November 1 this year. To include the names of loved ones in the All Saints Memorial List this year, please email the church office at with your names by Tuesday, October 27. If you would like to make a memorial donation please give via our Abundant Giving ( and select All Saints Memorial from the dropdown menu; or send a check to the church office with "All Saints Memorial" in the memo line.
Our Diocesan Convention Roll-out Meetings are every Wednesday evening, 5pm - 6pm, from September 9 through October 28. To attend the Zoom presentations go to The Convention Day Bishops’ Addresses/Elections/Resolutions/Budget) will be Saturday, November 7 - Zoom details will follow;

Rollout Meeting Schedule:
Oct. 21 - Christian Formation/Ecumenical and Interfaith
Oct. 28 - Reparations
(Nov. 4 - Reserved for possible additional Zoom meeting)
Is God calling YOU to run for Vestry? Are you interested in exploring your own faith leadership in the church? Serving on Vestry is an opportunity to provide spiritually grounded leadership with an emphasis on our church's finances and property management. Vestry members are baptized members of the parish who regularly attend worship and have contributed financially to Ascension regularly over the past 12 months. Vestry meets the evening of the 3rd Wednesday of each month. Please contact the Nominating Committee or Mtr Liz if you would like to discern this ministry or know someone you would like to nominate.
Blessings from the Vestry Nominating Committee:
Maurice Seaton (, Shana Kaplanov,
Rusty Moore, Terry Rogers, and Kate Rutherford
Sunday Paper Junior - The lectionary, our yearly schedule of Bible readings, carries us through Jesus’s life and teachings. The Church of The Ascension subscribes to the Sunday Paper Junior and we offer it to you and your family as a fun, creative way to study the lessons each week. Click here to access this week's paper. Please feel free to print out the pages each week and use as you desire. Check out this section each week for the current Sunday Paper Junior!
General Convention Task Force Survey - The Task Force on Theology of Social Justice Advocacy invites Episcopalians to participate in a survey, “Social Justice and the Episcopal Church: A Call for Stories”. The members of the Task Force would like to gather stories and deeper perspectives to support their work on behalf of the Church and invite Episcopalians to consider sharing their experience by completing the survey, Click the link to read more about it an to take the survey. Deadline, November 5
Are you interested in confirmation, or being received into the Episcopal church? In his pastoral letter, Bishop Dietsche indicates that there may be an opportunity for some small group confirmations this fall in different regions of the Diocese. If you would like to prepare to deepen your Christian commitment in this way, or if you are interested in learning more about the Episcopal church, please speak to Mother Liz.
No election would be possible without the poll workers who set up and take down polling sites, check in and assist voters. Many of those who have worked the polls in the past are over sixty and will not be doing so this year due to the risks of Covid-19 for that age group. If you are healthy, able, and feel secure working at a polling site, please consider applying to be a poll worker to ensure that polling sites run smoothly in this era defining election.
Early Voting in NYC - New York voters can also vote before Election Day. The early voting period runs from Saturday, October 24, 2020 to Sunday, November 1, 2020, but dates and hours may vary based on where you live.

What to bring
  • If you've voted in New York before, you don't need to provide ID to vote.
  • If you're a first-time voter who registered by mail, and didn't provide a copy of your ID with your registration, you may need to show ID to vote. Acceptable forms include: a current and valid photo ID; or a copy of a current utility bill, bank statement, government check, paycheck, or other government document that shows your name and address.
  • Voters without ID: If you are unable to provide ID, you will be able to vote an affidavit ballot.

For a list of dates, times and locations, go to
From the Vestry:

Help for job seekers available- Long-time choir member Deb Feldman is cofounder at Gray Scalable, an HR and Recruiting consultancy to tech startups, based in Flatiron. Deb is offering job search advice and interview practice for Ascension parishioners who have been furloughed or laid off as a result of Covid-19. This is offered remotely via Zoom and free of charge - however, spots are limited, and offered on a first come, first served basis. Please email if you're interested.
Subscribe to the AscensionNYC podcast and have our weekly sermons delivered to the device of your choice! While we have been posting recordings of sermons preached at Ascension services since February 2015, many have asked how they can listen to them on the go. Now you can subscribe to the AscensionNYC podcast to have the latest sermons and other audio content from the Church of the Ascension automatically downloaded to your phone, tablet or computer. Follow this link
to choose how you'd like to receive AscensionNYC in the podcast app you use; we’re being added to more and more directories each week!

You can also go to our website to listen to recent sermons by clicking here or going to our website.
Give while shopping - We all seem to be relying on online shopping more and more these days. The AmazonSmile Foundation donates 0.5 percent of the purchase price from your eligible AmazonSmile purchases to the nonprofit you choose. Even these small sums can add up for us. Click here to find out how.
This Week At Ascension
Sunday – October 18
Church Service (Zoom) 11:00 a.m.
Forum: Seminarian Introduction (Zoom)
Meditation with Prayers and Music (Available on our Facebook page)

Monday – October 19
Evening Prayer (Zoom) 5:30 p.m.
Lectionary Bible Study (Zoom) 6:30 p.m.
(Speak to Sibyl Piccone if you are interested in this group)

Tuesday – October 20
Church Open for Prayer and Meditation* (Church) 12 noon - 3:00 p.m.
Evening Prayer (Zoom) 5:30 p.m.
EfM (Zoom) 6:00 p.m.

Wednesday – October 21
Diocesan Convention Rollout Meeting (Zoom) 5:00 p.m.
Evening Prayer (Zoom) 5:30 p.m.
Vestry Meeting (Zoom) 6:30 p.m.

Thursday – October 22
Evening Prayer (Zoom) 5:30 p.m.
Meet Ibram X. Kendi (Zoom) 7:00 p.m.

Friday – October 23
Church Open for Prayer and Meditation* (Church) 12 noon - 3:00 p.m.
Evening Prayer (Zoom) 5:30 p.m.

Saturday – October 24
Rehearsal for Sunday Service (Zoom) 2:00 p.m.

Sunday – October 25
Church Service (Zoom) 11:00 a.m.
Meditation with Prayers and Music (Available on our Facebook page)

* Anyone entering the church must wear a mask, maintain appropriate physical distance, utilize the hand sanitizer stations, and provide contact tracing information. Anyone with a temperature of 99.9 or over will not be admitted and will be instructed to quarantine and contact their doctor.

If you need information to connect to one of our Zoom events please call the church office at 212-254-8620 or email us at
Contact Us
The Church of the Ascension -- Fifth Avenue and Tenth Street
212-254-8620 | |
We are working from home, but we will respond to emails and phone calls