St. Paul's Episcopal Church Poughkeepsie, NY 12601
"Making friends while serving God"
The Week of March 23-28, 2021
Triumph Followed by Sadness
This week's readings
Palm Sunday recognizes Jesus's triumphant entry into Jerusalem. He comes in as king, riding on a borrowed donkey across a palm covered and cheering crowd lined street. It is a great and beautiful image, one fit for Our Lord and Savior.  

In the Episcopal Church it is prescribed that the Palm Sunday Service starts with a blessing of the Palms and a celebration of Jesus in His regal glory. It is also prescribed that during that same service we see Jesus caught, tried, tortured and crucified, referred to as The Passion. This prescription of combining the two events into one service is a nod to the habit of many to not come to church for a Good Friday service where the Passion of Christ is again encountered.

This year we are going to follow that prescription, but break the service up a bit, both in location and in delivery.

This Sunday at 8am we will have a Blessing of the Palms outside of the Education Building of the church. That will be a live socially distanced mini service concluding in the distribution of palms. We will then return to our homes for a 10:00 Zoom service that will include a narrated and character enacted reading of the Passion Gospel from Mark. This puts the two events in the same morning, but does give us some separation of the two. After that service if you have not picked up your palms they will be available at church for a second distribution from 11:45 am - 1 pm.

Given our boiler situation and Covid restrictions on singing we have had to cut out some of the usual Holy Week Services and pace what we do have on Zoom. There will be no Maundy Thursday Service and no community Easter Vigil, but we will have a Good Friday Service on Zoom at 5:00 and a joyous Easter Sunday Service at 10:00 on Zoom.

Please join us for as much as you can.
 --Shawn Prater-Lee

 To be redirected to the Lectionary Page and get a digital copy of the readings  

Isaiah 50:4-9aPsalm 31:9-16Philippians 2:5-11;
  Mark 15:1-39

The Sunday Sermon
John 12
I really feel for those innocent Greek people who had politely asked if they might have an audience with Jesus. They had to have been totally perplexed by the response Jesus sent back to them by way of one of his disciples. Rather than giving them a time, letting them know when he would be available, Jesus sent back the strangest response. Amongst other things, he talked about dying grains of wheat and hating one’s life. That all had to be terribly confusing. But he was always making remarks like that. Why couldn’t he be more upbeat, more positive? It made me think he needed a good public relations person. Why was he beginning to talk about something that nobody wanted to hear about, his impending death? It would have been so much more pleasant if he had focused on some of his wonderful, life giving miracles, like the picnic on the hillside where all those people got stuffed on a couple of fish and five loaves of bread. Why was he now focusing on the subject of his death?
The Church has often been asked the same question. Why are we so fixated on Jesus’ death? Consider if you will, a portion of the creed we recite every Sunday: “For our sake he was crucified under Pontius Pilate; he suffered death and was buried.” It would appear that his death is part of the fabric of our faith. It seems that it is something we cannot forget; and, of course, it is during Lent that we are continually reminded of this crucial dynamic, as we enter, to the extent that we can, into the mystery of Jesus’ suffering and sacrifice for us. And we talk about his death for the same reason that he talked about his death, because it is the key to understanding who he is, and what he has to do with us.
But I have to tell you something. Many of us are a bit squeamish when it comes to the subject of the cross, and even more so if we mention the word “crucifix.” I had a priest-friend on the West Coast who put a life-size crucifix up on the lawn of his church every Lent, and he’d drape the arms of the cross with a purple cloth. One year, with much sadness, he told me that he had received a dozen phone calls from neighbors, some of whom were parishioners, complaining that the crucifix on the church lawn was in bad taste and made the neighborhood look bad. One man said to him that “it was depressing.” It reminded him of what actually happened to Jesus.
I don’t know. Maybe the cross is too shocking, too unfitting a symbol for the way that we like to think about God. How could an all-powerful God have lowered himself to a point where he would be hung on a cross? If Jesus is God’s Messiah, how could he have consented to die like a common criminal? Was this the Jesus the Greeks in this morning’s gospel were wanting to see?
Such a symbol of human failure and weakness can hardly be an edifying religious symbol.
Along those lines, I believe we live in a culture in which the idea of failure is appalling. The idea of being powerless and unsuccessful is unacceptable; it is the worst thing that can happen to a person. We admire winners, not losers. One journalist during the Olympics, many years back, concentrated in his reporting, not on the hard work, courage and good sportsmanship of so many of the athletes, but in a pejorative fashion on the poor performances of the American athletes. Winning, we are taught, is everything. If we don’t win, we look bad. The cross is a perennial symbol of contradiction; at a glance it looks like an example of total failure, but through faith it becomes the instrument that tells us that God’s way of looking and dealing with the world is very different from ours.
Many years back there was a priest who, for twenty years, served a parish in the South Bronx. His parish was made up of what a certain newspaper writer referred to as “the invisible people of America.” They were people whose lives existed on the very margins of society, people who seemed never to have known anything but loss and disappointment, failure after failure. Sometimes their failures were because of the heartlessness of a system that treated them as second-class human beings, and sometimes it was because of their own bad choices in life. In the lives of those “invisible” people whose deprivation embarrassed the less sensitive in society, one could sense feelings of abuse, shame, and powerlessness. But their parish priest didn’t see them that way; he taught Diego, a little boy who was born with a deformed leg, to believe that he was truly an important child of God despite the fact that the rest of the world kept telling him that he was a stupid cripple. Diego’s hero was the crucified Christ. He helped Angie, an HIV-positive and recovering addict, to know she could be a productive member of the community. With that thought firmly in mind, she went on to become a trauma nurse in a Hospital in the Bronx. She wears a crucifix around her neck 24/7. He helped Michelle, a young woman wasting away from cancer and chemo, to recognize that hers was a bright faith that was an example for others who were lost in the dark. She insisted on carrying the cross during the Good Friday Liturgy for as long as her health would permit.
In the eyes of faith, the grace of God is visible in the strangest of circumstances. Of all places, it can be clearly seen in the presence of a man who died on a cross, a man who said the strangest thing, “When I am lifted up, I will draw all people to myself.”

--Fr. C. Allan Ford

Palm Sunday Blessing of the Palms:- March 28 8:00am in front of the education building

Distribution of Palms:- March 28 8:00am-9:00am and 11:45am - 1:00pm in front of the education building

Palm Sunday Service:- March 28 10:00am on Zoom

Good Friday Service:- April 2 5:00pm on Zoom

Easter Sunday Service:- April 4 10:00am on Zoom

Our Zoom connections remain the same and are
Meeting ID: 823 3911 5280
One tap mobile
+16465588656,,82339115280# US (New York)
+13017158592,,82339115280# US (Germantown)
Dial by your location
      +1 646 558 8656 US (New York)


This parish survey is intended to help our parish in our search for a new clergy person. The Vestry is responsible for the search and the selection, but this is a decision that impacts all of us at St. Paul’s. We need your input to help us make the decision that is right for all of us. It is important that every voice is heard. Please take the time to fill out this survey to help us move forward in this process.

The survey takes less than 15 minutes and can be found at St. Paul's Survey

Paper copies will be available at this Sunday's Blessing of the Palms or can be mailed to you by calling the church office at (845) 452-8440.


The Wardens & Vestry
--Shawn Prater-Lee

Dear St. Paul's Family

It's been a year since the Covid-19 virus forced us into physical and emotional distancing. Our friends at the Dutchess County Interfaith Council has created an "In Memoriam Page" on their website to honor those who died from the Virus. I would encourage you to add the name(s) of your family members, friends or associates so we will never forget their passing and others can join you in their memory. You are invited to give the full name, age, and a one sentence tribute. The email address to send the information is -

If you need help to submit your tribute, please leave a message at 845-454-0613 and I will help.

Grace and peace
Deacon Julett

From February 26th through the month of March, St. Paul's Episcopal Church Food Pantry has been selected to receive a $1 donation for every $9.99 Bloomin' 4 Good Bouquet with the red circle sticker sold at the stores located at 2540 South Road, Poughkeepsie, Rt. 9 Hyde Park and Burnett Blvd, Poughkeepsie.
Welcome to the Bloomin' 4 Good Program!
A Brand New Program to Benefit St. Paul's Episcopal Church Food Pantry
Let's Fight Hunger Together. One Bouquet at a Time.
You are about halfway through your benefiting month in the Bloomin' 4 Good Program. Shoppers and supporters have raised $52 for St. Paul's Episcopal Church Food Pantry so far!
Approximately 6 weeks after the close of your month, you will receive a donation check in the mail for the amount you have raised.

We ask our supporters to please purchase two or more $9.99 Bloomin' 4 Good Bouquets with the red circle sticker before the month ends!
Click the button below to start using the ready-to-go Marketing Materials.

-- Charlie & Jeannie Henderson
--Bobbie Gordon
Sunday Services will be on ZOOM until further notice
Our Zoom connections remain the same and are
Meeting ID: 823 3911 5280
One tap mobile
+16465588656,,82339115280# US (New York)
+13017158592,,82339115280# US (Germantown)
Dial by your location
      +1 646 558 8656 US (New York)
We now have a YouTube channel. 
or search on YouTube for St. Paul's Poughkeepsie.
We hope to put copies of all of our online services there.
Total deposits for the past week - $1,074 ($10 for the Food Pantry). Many thanks to all who have been generously supporting the Food Pantry.
We're looking forward to seeing you on Zoom until further notice. 

Bishops Dietsche, Shin and Glasspool will lead the service.

More information on the service will be available on the Cathedral’s website:

Episcopal Diocese of New York | 1047 Amsterdam Avenue, New York, NY 10025

Prepare for Joy!
Join us online and outdoors for Holy Week programming.
Please note that all services & programs will be online, unless labeled “In Person” or “Outdoor”
Holy Week Schedule
(click link below to visit the website)
--The Rev. Dcn. Julett Butler
--Janet Quade

11 Margaret Robinson 
12 Rev. Tyler Jones     
14 Kattyann Goodwin   
17 Deborah Marie Williams
Bryanna Winkler 
18 Shirley Pharr
20 Stacey Rosborough 


21 Linda Aileen DuBois
Lisl Prater-Lee
24 Alice J. Leigh 
25 Michael Van Pelt
26 Karen A. Reid
Josephine Zeleznik
29 Danya Clarke

30 Stuart Ballinger
31 Rose Marie Proctor
Peter Bedrossian
Please keep those on our parish prayer list in your minds and in your prayers, especially at this time of separation and isolation.

MARCH 2021
Our prayers are asked for:
Warren Francis and family; Fr. Tyler & Molly; Janett; Kay, Katherine, Renate; Frank Burnett, Food Pantry Volunteers, victims of Human/Sex Trafficking; Burton family; Lillian, Matthew, Sasha; Paul & Donna, Margaret, Joe, G.J., Aleta, Plain family, Melius family; Ibadan Diocese, All Saints' Church, Oni family; Gary, Legend; Rhonda, Joe, Ann, all Teachers, Parents, Students, Theodore, John, Paul, Kathy, George, Janett, Renate, and Notoe; Sharon Greene, Owen, Agnes, Norma; McLauren family; Graham family; Wood family; Braxton family; Lori, Steven, Jim, Seth; Phil; All essential workers; Beryl & Glen, Vincent family; George; Daniel Mizell and family; Liz, Martha; Eileen; the Butler, Richards and Barrett families; Fr. Allan and family; St. Paul's Vestry; Darien family; Richardson family; Sherow family; Edna Clarke, Michelle, Kathy B.; Carola and Violet; Whitman, Medical Reserve Corp. of Dutchess County, The Laken family; All Parishioners; Kairos International, Catherine, Michelle, Yamily; G.J., Joe; Lois, Matthew, Lillian; Lynita, Perry, Melius family, Sasha; Stacey, Linda, Phil, Jody; Tucker family, Branch family, Atkinson family; Alison, McGhan, Sterling, Unah, Avonel, Kim, Santos family, Madeline, Bramble, Charlie, Cynthia, Gencia, Val, Joanne, Janet, Corkey, Pelaez, Josephs-Clarke family, Dixon family, Paulette, Jarah, Mertlyn; Adam, Paul, Andrew & family, Douglas family, Ron, Dave, Liz; Jill, Lana, Andrew, Susan; Schneider family, all in need; Susie; Sherry, Claudia
Please "Like" our page to stay up to date with all services and events.
St. Paul's Episcopal Church-Poughkeepsie

'In Service to God & You'
Our food pantry volunteers are in active service at St. Paul's these days. We give thanks to them and thanks to God for their willingness to help us by helping others.

March 23-28, 2021

TUE   23 10:00am  Food Pantry & Thrift Shop

WED  24 10:00am  Food Pantry & Thrift Shop (St. Patrick's Day)

THU   25 10:00am  Food Pantry & Thrift Shop

SUN   28 10:00am  Zoom - Rite II, Ante Communion

Help us get the word out by submitting news of parish activities. Send submittals to or call 845 452 8440
Give us a call today!

St. Paul's Episcopal Church 161 Mansion Street, Poughkeepsie, NY 12601