St. Paul's Episcopal Church Poughkeepsie, NY 12601

"Making friends while serving God"

The Week of January 5-10, 2021
Baptism, a call to commitment 
Baptism as a way to the freedom of the children of God and as a way to a life in community calls for a personal commitment. There is nothing magical or automatic about this sacram
This week's readings
ent. Having water poured over us while someone says, "I baptise you in the Name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit," has lasting significance when we are willing to claim and reclaim in all possible ways the spiritual truth of who we are as baptised people.
In this sense baptism is a call to parents of baptised children and to the baptised themselves to choose constantly for the light in the midst of a dark world and for life in the midst of a death-harbouring society.
- Henri Nouwen
--Shawn Prater-Lee
To be redirected to the Lectionary Page and get a digital copy of the readings  
Genesis 1:1-5; Psalm 29; Acts 19:1-7;
Mark 1:4-11
The Sunday sermon
Matthew 2: 1-12, Wise Men 

So, who are they? Who are these guys who came from far away? I remember singing about them when we were kids rehearsing for an Epiphany pageant. My two best friends and I were the three kings, and as we walked down the center isle with our gifts we sang, "We three kings of Orient are, tried to smoke a rubber cigar..." Fr. Rector was not pleased. He gave us the mean eyeball look, and quickly we corrected the lyrics. Again, who were these travelers from the East that we were singing about, and what were their names? Were their names Melchior, Caspar and Balthasar? We really don't know because their names cannot be found in Holy Scripture. And what did they bring? During our performance on that Feast day, as we got to the manger in our homemade robes, we presented our gifts, gold, myrrh, and as my buddy Herbie, the third king who was very nervous said, "Here, frank sent this" instead of frankincense. His words brought laughter to the congregation. But again, I am asking who were they?

My brothers and my sisters as I've pondered this question over the decades, I've decided that they are us. Now I want you to hold that thought for a moment. You may have noticed when the gospel was read that it didn't say anything about Melchior, Casper or Balthasar. Those names come out of legends from the middle ages. As I said earlier, they are not in the Bible. And the Bible doesn't even say the people we are celebrating on this day are kings. It calls them magi or wise men. Probably they were scientists or astrologers. But what is most important, according to the Bible, is that they were from the East. They were from outside Israel; they were not part of the ancient covenant God made with the chosen people of Israel. They were foreigners and strangers.

Throughout the Old Testament there was a struggle that went on about just exactly who were included in the promises of God. Some writers clearly believed that it was only the people of Israel who were to be embraced at the coming of the Messiah; that they alone were loved and chosen by God. These writers believed that everyone else, no matter how good they were stood outside the covenant.

But there was another school of thought. And the scholars that embraced this other thinking believed that when the Messiah came, the promise was for everyone. They quoted from the Book of Isaiah, "Foreign nations will stream to your light, and the rulers of the whole world will be drawn to you because you are a beacon of light, a sign of peace..." Over and over again, as the Scriptures lay out the Law by which the Israelites were to conduct themselves, they were called upon to make room for the stranger and sojourner, and to offer hospitality to all comers.
This argument, this question regarding who will be embraced by God's covenant continued in full force even in the New Testament. It was Paul's position that he was called as an apostle to the Gentiles; Peter on the other hand, Peter thought he was called to bring only the Jews to Christ.

But Matthew's story of the visit of the Wise Men indicates that the decision was made by God long before Peter and Paul were presenting their different positions. These magi from the East were Gentiles, who saw the star, and it was a sign for them from God, and they followed that star across deserts, mountains, and across national boundaries. In addition, as they traveled, they must have crossed and destroyed their own emotional boundaries of skepticism and narrow thinking which helped prepare them to see the light of Christ in the baby Jesus.

And as I suggested earlier, we are the modern-day magi. By Baptism we are called to recognize ourselves as part of that covenant of love and peace. Like the Wise Men we are called to transcend all the barriers within us that would block us from coming to our Lord. I am talking about our own skepticism, our own self-centeredness, and pride. I would like to think that we are called out of ourselves and into the Christ, especially as we see him in each other; and we are called to pledge our being obedient to the vows we made at our Baptisms.

During this season of the Epiphany, through the days the light of the sun will get stronger, and each day it will dwells longer in the sky. Let us remember in our hearts the manger in which the holy birth took place; and let us commit ourselves to be numbered among those involved in spreading the healing light of the gospel to the many who are still without the light of Christ.
--Fr. C. Allan Ford



Sunday Services will be on ZOOM until further notice
Our Zoom connections remain the same and are
Meeting ID: 823 3911 5280
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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.
It is up to you....
                                          What have you done with the day you had?
                                          Have you made someone happy or someone sad?
                                          God gave it to you to do as you would!
                                          Did you do what was wicked or do what was good?
                                          Did you hand out a smile or just give a frown?
                                          Did you lift someone up or push someone down?
                                          Did you lighten some load or some progress impede?
                                           Did you look for a rose or just gather a weed?
                                          What did you do with your beautiful day???
                                          God gave it to you; Did you throw it away????
-Author Unknown
--Rose Marie Proctor 

--The Rev. Dcn. Julett Butler
Total combined deposits for the past 2 weeks - $5,848.94 (includes $1630 for the Food Pantry). Many thanks to all who are generously supporting the Food Pantry.
If you haven't yet returned your pledge form, please do so as soon as possible. If you would like your envelopes dropped off at your house, please call the office to let us know.  Otherwise, they will be available for pick-up at the office Monday between 10 & 12 or Tues., Wed., Thurs. between 10 & 2. End of Year Statements will be mailed this week.
We're looking forward to seeing you on Zoom until further notice.  


~ Coming up in late January ~
Two Zoom Forums on Human Trafficking
Aimed at raising awareness about different forms
of human trafficking and the rising risk to teens.
Two extraordinary women will be leading
the events and sharing their wisdom with us.
Attendance is free. Register now!
Sponsored by the Task Force Against Human Trafficking
Human Trafficking 101: Rise Up!
For High School Youth
Sunday, January 24, 7:00-8:15 p.m.
Via Zoom
Human Trafficking 101: Wise Up!
For Adults (parents, guardians, educators, clergy, lay leaders and more)
Sunday, January 31, 7:00-8:15 p.m.
Via Zoom
Please don't hesitate to contact us with any questions.
Together, our hearts align for education and safety for all.
The Task Force Against Human Trafficking
The Rev. Adrian Dannhauser
Steering Committee
Yvonne O'Neal
The Rev. Posey Krakowsky
The Rev. Dr. Victoria Jeanne Rollins
The Rev. Gina Gore
Online Anti-Racism Workshop
January 4, 7, 11 and 14
A multi-part online workshop open only
to clergy and laypeople of the Diocese of New York
The online workshop will be conducted on the following dates:
  • Monday, Jan. 4
  • Thursday, Jan. 7
  • Monday, Jan. 11
  • Thursday, Jan. 14
All sessions will be begin at 7:00 p.m. and end at 9:00 p.m.
Participants will be required to complete individual viewing and corresponding assignments before online Zoom meetings. Completion of all assignments and attendance at all meetings is required for diocesan certification.
Registration for this workshop is limited to members of the Episcopal Diocese of New York.
The purpose of the diocesan Anti-Racism Workshop is to help us become aware of how the sin of racism impacts all of our lives, and how we all unconsciously and consciously participate in racist systems. It is required for clergy in our diocese and highly recommended for lay leadership.
Dialogue is the foundation of the workshop. We use group exercises and examine scientific and historical evidence concerning the origins of the concept of race and its legacy.
This special multi-part online workshop is only open to members of our diocese. There is no cost to attend.
Of the hundreds of workshop participants, more than 85% have found the workshop to be "very useful" or "extremely useful" in their work and daily lives.
Upcoming Online Anti-Racism Workshops
All to be held via Zoom from 7:00-9:00 p.m.
(Registration for these workshops will open shortly.)
  • March 1, 4, 8, 11
  • June 7, 10, 14, 17
  • September 13, 16, 20, 23
Other Anti-Racism Initiatives
Saturday, February 20
Via Zoom
Atlanta, Georgia; Birmingham, Selma, Montgomery and Hayneville, Alabama
August 12-14 ~ Unless prohibited by COVID
~ Information about upcoming events and initiatives will be shared as possible. ~


 1 Mavis Rivera  
  7 Lillian Garrett-Thomas 
14 Edna Clarke
 2 Wilfred P. Rohde    
     Jacinto Xavier Santos-Thompson
15 John Jerome Mazzuto

 3 Linda santos   

  8 Abraham Joseph Foley
21  Donna Hudak
    Jeffrey R. Francis
12 John H. Filor23 Carola G. Madrid
  5 Catherine Porter
13 Rena Mazzuto
25 Agnes Scarlett
     Emily Porter
     Kaelyn Lei Hamilton


Please keep those on our parish prayer list in your minds and in your 
prayers, especially at this time of separation and isolation.

Our prayers are asked for:
Burton family; Becky Campos, 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, Elyse, Jim, Seth; Phil; All essential workers; Beryl & Glen, Vincent family; George;  Daniel Mizell and family; Liz, Martha; Lourdes;  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, Dept. of Behavioral and Community  health 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.


January 5-10, 2021

TUE       5
10:00am   Food Pantry & Thrift Shop

WED      6
10:00am   Food Pantry & Thrift Shop

THU       7
10:00am   Food Pantry & Thrift Shop

SAT       9
10:00am   Buildings & Grounds

SUN    10
10:00am   RITE II - Zoom  Ante Communion





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