St. Paul's Episcopal Church   Poughkeepsie, NY 12601

"Making friends while serving God"

The week of January 7-13, 2019
The Baptism of Jesus
"With you I am well pleased"  --God 

This week's readings

God and people speaking for God make it clear in our Sunday readings that more than anything, God wants to be in union with us. Isaiah tells us that God said, "Do not fear, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name, you are mine." God clearly is deeply enthralled, proclaiming, "You are precious in my sight."
Our psalm lays out the vastness of God's power and splendor, then concludes, "The Lord shall give strength to his people; the Lord shall give his people the blessing of peace." We do not take this promise for granted; it is a sign of God's openness and grace toward us.
In our epistle the disciples Peter and John manifested God's blessing on them because they were empowered with the Holy Spirit when they laid hands on the Samaritans. And in our Gospel, at the baptism of Jesus, God declared "You are my Son, the Beloved; with you I am well pleased."
This expression of God's pleasure with Jesus extends to those who follow Jesus and to all whom God has made. Once we comprehend this holy connection with God our lives are changed.

 Isaiah 43:1-7; Psalm 29; 
Acts 8:14-17; Luke 3:15-17,21-22

Julett Butler approved for ordination 
by  Diocesan Standing Committee
Julett Butler has been serving at St. Paul's as a deacon-in-training since September of last year. Her assignment with us has been the culmination of her third year of training under the deacon training program of the Episcopal Diocese of New York. Last
   Julett Butler
Thursday Julett appeared before the Diocesan Standing Committee, effectively the board of directors of the diocese, and along with other candidates was approved for ordination. The expectation is that her class of deacon candidates will be ordained at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine in New York City in May.
Julett is a parishioner of Christ Church in Poughkeepsie. Diocesan regulations (canons) require a person in the process of discernment, either for ordination as deacons or for ordination as priests, to perform their training in parishes other than the parish in which they have been parishioners. For this reason Julett has been engaged at St. Paul's and at other churches.

Julett's ministry in our midst will continue until ordination. We will look forward to news of her ministry following ordination and give thanks for her time with us.

St. Paul's Good Book Club is happening
The St. Paul's Worship Committee is excited to announce the start of our local version of the Good Book Club - a Forward Movement program designed to increase our understanding of the Bible during the season of Epiphany. Forward Movement is the Episcopal Church enterprise which publishes Forward Day by Day and which presented the Renewal Works program that St. Paul's adopted three years ago.
Good Book Club participants read an assigned section of the Bible every day, and then meet weekly to discuss their thoughts and impressions of what they've read to date. Starting this week and running through March 6, Paul's participants in the Good Book Club  will meet at Coffee Hour each Sunday to review the week's Good Book readings and discuss the questions that are provided.
This year Good Book Club groups across the Episcopal Church will embark on a reading of Saint Paul's Letter to the Romans, a seminal document in which our parish namesake provides an overview of the nascent Christian faith to the citizens of Rome (and broadly speaking, the world). Paul's Letter to the Romans explains how our faith, though rooted in Judaism, is available to all of humanity. Paul further explores the concepts of salvation, the power of God, and the concept of grace. Many biblical scholars consider Romans to be Paul's most important theological treatise, articulating what it means to be a disciple of Christ and how that translates into daily life.
The readings assigned for the first week are shown below.For additional information about the Good Book Club, please visit the website at
Please feel free to contact me if you have any questions. We look forward to seeing you on Sundays!                                           -- Mark Debald, Worship Chairperson

These are the Good Book Club readings for Jan. 7-12
Monday, January 7     

Tuesday, January 8   

Wednesday, January 9
Romans 1:18-32

Thursday, January 10
Romans 2:1-16

Friday, January 11
Romans 2:17-29

Saturday, January 12
Romans 3:1-8

These are the readings for the week of Jan 14-19
Monday, January 14
Romans 3:9-20
Tuesday, January 15
Romans 3:21-31
Wednesday, January 16
Romans 4:1-12
Thursday, January 17
Romans 4:13-25
Friday, January 18     Confession of Saint Peter
Romans 5:1-11
Saturday, January 19



The procession of the Three Kings included a wide range of children and a couple of teachers and parents..
The banner inscription from Mark reads, "And Jesus said to them, 'Follow me and I will make you fish for people.'"
The creche complete with Jesus, his family, a shepherd, animals and the Three Kings



We are asking all parishioners to please help us stock the Food Pantry. For the month of January please bring in pancake mix & syrup, there will be a basket for all donations in the Narthex.

Mark your calendars!

The Altar Guild has received our 2019 St. Paul's Ordo Kalendars. These informative calendars are useful to anyone who is learning about, informed about or interested in our progress through the Bible in the course of our lectionary year. They also make excellent gifts for folks who care about the church, the days we celebrate saints and special people. See Rose Marie Proctor to purchase your own calendar and others for friends and family. The $5 cost goes to support our Altar Guild.
                         JANUARY BIRTHDAYS

1    Mavis Rivera                                                12     John H. Filor
2    Bill Rhode                                                     13     Rena Mazzuto
3    Linda Santos                                                14     Edna Clarke
      Jeffrey Francis                                              15    John Jerome Mazzuto
7    Jacinto Xavier Santos-Thompson                 21    Donna Hudak
8    Abraham Joseph Foley                                 23    Carola Madrid
11  Francis McKenzie                                         25    Agnes Scarlett

The Sunday Sermon...
SERMON: Epiphany C 1 6 19
This day when we celebrate the three magi visiting Jesus in the manger is evocative of our own encounters in the course of our lives in faith with the baby destined to be our savior. Our faith is built on a foundation made of many different materials.
There's the biblical understanding. There's the experience of feeling God is on our side. There's the knowledge of Jesus and the supreme benefit of following his teaching in our lives. And there's our own individual memories of our faith experiences in mundane ways. There are others.
The Epiphany has been personal and familiar to me as long as I can remember. I first learned about Epiphany because it was my brother's birthday. It was regularly noted that his birthday fell on such an important church date. As here at St. Paul's, we had the children's procession of the magi on the Sunday closest to Epiphany. It was also, of course, the end of the Christmas season which we knew was long gone. We could hardly remember back to December 25, presents notwithstanding.
Later I got to know a work colleague whose birthday was also January sixth. I had been working in politics and the Moral Majority had moved into the forefront of the national political process and my new work friend was the first born-again Christian I had met. We had very interesting theology and philosophy discussions, but I had the sublime pleasure of informing my new ardent Christian friend, of the meaning of his birthday in the life of Christ and in the church. I am sure I enjoyed that too much.
My most exciting connection to the Epiphany came some time later. Fast forward twenty five years and Molly and I were living in Munich, Germany. We had the opportunity to take a trip north to Köln on the Rhine River in January and to participate in the Three Kings Festival at the massive Köln Dom or cathedral.
The cathedral was one of the more famous bombed out buildings of the German industrial areas of the Rhine in the Second World War. It was rebuilt with international financial support and stands today as a reminder of the sustaining power of faith, even after vast conflict, war and destruction.
But the cathedral in Köln is also known and has been known for over 1,500 years for its reliquary, a collection of artifacts from the Holy Land from the time of Jesus. Among the artifacts, probably the most famous, are a collection of human bones which have been identified as the bones of the three kings, or magi, who visited Jesus and his family on the first Epiphany.
On Jan.6, 2005 the huge cathedral was unheated on a very wintry day. It was easily below freezing and the floors were very cold stone. A line extended from the massive front doors around the church in a serpentine route to the sanctuary. On this day --January 6th--and this day only the cathedral places on display the bones of the three kings.
The line moved fairly quickly, so in the time it took Molly and me to take in the very high, vaulted ceiling and the maybe 60 foot high stained glass windows and the remarkable cubic form of the cathedral we were getting pretty close. It became clear that no one was spending a lot of time gazing at the bones or praying over them. They looked and moved on. So before we knew it we were in the sanctuary gazing at the reason for all the fuss: some bones.
Two things need to be said about this, I think. One is that it is difficult for us to appreciate how important relics were in an age when few were literate, most didn't have any education, church was central to people's lives, and connections to the life of Jesus were available, however improbable and however gruesome. In the early years of Christianity famous religious figures traveled to the Holy Land in search of relics. Their disruption of graves and their marketing of such things contributed significantly to the ill will in Palestine toward Europeans and previewed the hostilites of the Crusades.
Recognizing that that is part of Christian history is important. And doing so allows us to appreciate the second thing about the Epiphany worth noting: the wonder of the day, the marvelous story we inherit..
The coming of Christ was heralded by prophets, sages, wise men and kings. People wanted this Prince of Peace to enter the world. They were desperate for messages of God's love and favor, they were longing for a time of calm to live their lives. Jesus was their best hope and they followed every lead and took every chance they could to locate Jesus and, in the centuries since, to attach themselves to absolutely anything that could be remotely associated with Jesus.
The shepherds on Christmas Eve and the Magi on Epiphany are representative of all who seek God and seek to do God's will. Their desire for Jesus mirrors our own these hundreds and hundreds of years later.
The Epiphany brings into very sharp focus the utterly insignificant life of the humble family in Bethlehem. They had no authority, no earthly resources, no support from family or neighbors; they were refugees fleeing political wrath and they had their own family dynamics to sort out. This would seem to be a formula for disaster, yet instead it is a story which gives us great hope, year after year.
This understanding and this hope is reflected throughout today's liturgy. In the 10 am service our opening hymn, "Brightest and best of the stars of the morning," evokes images of the holy signals of Jesus' birth, drawing those to him who would honor and worship the newborn Lord. In our Hebrew Bible reading Isaiah calls, "Arise, shine, for your light has come..." That refers of course, to Jesus, the light to enlighten the nations.
Our psalm is a prayer for a King concerned not with power and wealth but with righteousness and justice. This was the hope for Jesus, a hope he more than fulfilled. It is also a hope which he points toward in this day, as he has in every age.
Our Epistle reading, from Paul's letter to the Ephesians, tells of '...the boundless riches of Christ,' riches of the spirit that are available to every believer.
The three kings, or the wise men, or the magi, depending on the reading and on your preference, found what they were looking for in the newborn Christ child. Not that Jesus conveyed that confidence, but the fulfillment of all they'd been told assured them that this was the one who would bring to the world a new way of being, a way of being in our lives with God, in faith.
They also knew their mission was to conceal their discovery from King Herod to protect Jesus and his family from this paranoid and violent ruler.
They knew this because of a dream and as a consequence they "...left for their own country by another road." They didn't go back the way they came and they didn't check in with Herod, as he had ordered.
As we know, ultimately people fearful of Jesus' power and spiritual authority were able to bring his earthly life to an end. But first, from his birth and throughout his ministry, Jesus brought to the people seeking hope and confidence in the love of God the very gifts they had longed for forever.
Jesus does the same for us today, being reborn each year, thrilling us with Christmas and the discovery by the Three Kings, reminding us that Jesus was born, as we prayed in our collect, "manifested ... to the peoples of the earth."
An Epiphany sermon preached Jan. 6, 2019 at St. Paul's Episcopal Church, Poughkeepsie NY by the
Rev. Tyler Jones, Rector.

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St. Paul's Episcopal Church-Poughkeepsie

'In Service to God & You'
Server:            Maria Bell

Lectors:           Rose Marie Proctor
                        Adrian Goldson

Litanist:           Pete Bedrossian
Organist:         Maris Kristapsons
Acolytes:         Shawn Prater-Lee                 
Lectors:           Jeanne Henderson
                        Rose Marie Proctor
Litanist:           Mark Debald
Usher:             Dewy Clarke
                        Mark Debald
Altar Guild:     Hyacinth Curtis & Daphne Barrett


LEVAS-II           227                   We shall overcome

1982                 599                    Lift every voice and sing

LEVAS-II           106                   Take my hand, precious Lord

1982                 423                     Immortal, invisible, God only wise


 HYMN INFORMATION:  We Shall Overcome is a gospel song which became a protest song and a key anthem of the Civil Rights Movement. Most commonly believed to be lyrically descended from "I'll Overcome Some Day", a 1900 hymn by Charles A. Tindley, the modern version of the song was first said to have been sung by tobacco workers during a 1945 strike in Charleston, South Carolina. Two years later it was published under the title "We Will Overcome." Zilphia Horton, who learned it at the 1945 strike, taught it to Pete Seeger and many others. In the early 1960s, Seeger and other famous folksingers such as Joan Baez sang the song at rallies, folk festivals, and concerts in the North and helped make it widely known. Music scholars have pointed out that the first half of We Shall Overcome bears a notable resemblance to "The Sicilian Mariners Hymn", first published in 1792 and widely circulated in American hymnals. Music historian Victor Bobetsky recently wrote "We Shall Overcome owes its existence to many ancestors and to the constant change and adaptation that is typical of the folk music process."


January 7-13, 2019
7:30am "Good Morning" AA Meeting;  

5pm Stewardship;
6pm Evening Prayer;
6:30pm NA Meeting;

10am-2pm Office, Pantry, Thrift Store;
6pm Evening Prayer, Bible Study;

7:30am "Good Morning" AA Meeting;
10am-2pm Office, Food Pantry, Thrift Shop
12:15pm Healing Service & Eucharist;

10am-2pm Office, Food Pantry, Small Blessings Thrift Shop; 
6pm Evening Prayer, Pastoral Care, Evangelism/Outreach;

FRI 11
7:30am "Good Morning" AA meeting; 

SAT  12
10am NA Meeting;
3 pm NA Meeting "Journey to Recovery"; 

SUN 13
8am Rite I;
8:45am Lesson's Discussion
9:30am Choir Practice; 

10am Sunday School;

10am Rite II;

11:15am Coffee Hour & The Good Book Club Meeting;
11:30am Youth;


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