St. Paul's Episcopal Church Poughkeepsie, NY 12601

"Making friends while serving God"

The Week of Febuary 9-14, 2021


At some moments we experience complete unity within us and around us. This may happen when we stand on a mountaintop and are captivated by the view. It may happen when we witness the birth of a child or the death of a friend. It may happen when we have an intimate conversation or a family meal. It may happen in church during a service or in a quiet room during prayer. But whenever and however it happens
This week's readings
we say to ourselves: "This is it ... everything fits ... all I ever hoped for is here."
This is the experience that Peter, James, and John had on the top of Mount Tabor when they saw the aspect of Jesus' face change and his clothing become sparkling white. They wanted that moment to last forever (see Luke 9:28-36). This is the experience of the fullness of time. These moments are given to us so that we can remember them when God seems far away and everything appears empty and useless. These experiences are true moments of grace.
- Henri Nouwen
--Shawn Prater-Lee

To be redirected to the Lectionary Page and get a digital copy of the readings  
2 Kings 2:1-12; Psalm 50:1-6; 2 Corinthians 4:3-6;
 Mark 9:2-9
The Sunday sermon
Mark 1: 29-39, Epiphany Five 
I don't know how we would put it if we were talking about the fame Jesus experienced during
his day, but in this day and age, we might say that his career was advancing nicely. Or we might say that he was on a roll.
In this morning's gospel we learn that Jesus had just launched his career and already the entire town was beating a path to his door in order to benefit from his ministry. And can you believe this? All of this was done without the help of an agent. Just a few verses earlier in this chapter, Jesus recruited four disciples. He also preached in the synagogue in Capernaum, and he was lucky enough to have a demon possessed person at that service so that he could demonstrate his ability to perform an exorcism. And Jesus was surely up to the task; and the word began to spread about the amazing things he did throughout the entire region of Galilee.
By sundown of that Saturday the whole town began to gather at his door, and by the next
morning virtually everyone from the greater community was there. You see, there is nothing
like satisfied customers to bring in more clients. Even though there was no TV evening news,
nor a morning paper, the word spread that Jesus from Nazareth, the carpenter's son was doing incredible things. It was even reported that he went to a wedding in Cana and turned water into wine.
Jesus' star was rising. He had just launched his ministry, and people could not stop talking
about him. I remember reading about how long and hard Billy Graham's organization had to
work to organize, publicize, and finance a week-long crusade. Jesus may have been still in his
internship, one might say, but he was preaching and drawing large crowds like a polished and
established professional.
He became a household name throughout the entire region, even though he did not own one
Super Bowl ring. Nor had he been on the cover of Time Magazine. However, everywhere he
went the word of his coming preceded him. The excitement of his presence surrounded him,
and the stories of his ministry lingered long after his departure. The young man was
operating from his strength. He could interact with people long into the evening hours. He was
on the top of his game, yet still very early in his career.
It was at this point in his career that Jesus does something that seemed very odd. Successful
Jesus, thoughtful Jesus, miracle worker Jesus, everyone's wedding guest Jesus, got up very
early one morning, left the house and went off to a to a secluded place to pray. One would have thought that he needed his sleep. All that healing must have taken a huge amount of energy out of him. Also, the stamina to relate to those massive crowds of people alone was enough to wear him out.
And again what would he have to pray about anyway? Everything was going so well. Why did Jesus need to get up so early and find a solitary place for prayer? What was so urgent that Jesus needed to spend time in prayer?
Well, might it be that Jesus was aware that the healing power he had was a gift from God, and
so, he wanted to give thanks to the source of his power? Might it be that Jesus was aware that he was the person that people saw in the acts of healing? But it was his Father that provided and perpetuated his ministry. Though it was the people who were grateful to Jesus for his healing, It was God who needed to be thanked because he did the actual healing. Consequently, Jesus knew he needed to thank God. He needed to praise God from whom all blessings flow.
Let me spin it still another way. Might it be that perhaps Jesus was tempted to feel pretty good about himself. Perhaps he was getting too comfortable excepting the accolades from the people, and about his ability to do good works. Woe to him if he had forgotten about the lessons he learned during the temptation in the wilderness. So, I think he played it smart; he really needed to spend time in prayer with his Father because as he was out developing his ministry, he just may have experienced temptations that brought back those difficult days in the wilderness.
There was a man in my first parish during the sixties who made a lot of money working on
Wall Street. One day he came to me and said he was sick and tired of his work, and was
tempted to buy a house in Vermont and live a life of leisure. I recommended that he pray about it and speak to his wife and children about his thoughts. A week went by and he contacted me again. He sounded much relieved because in sharing his thoughts with God and his family, it somehow took the pressure off him and it became a shared venture. The family agreed to the idea, but wanted to wait and go the following year when one of his daughters would have graduated from high school. He also woke up in the middle of one night with the idea that he might find a house with a barn where he could pursue a hobby he had; he showed some talent in the area of furniture maker. Shucks, he thought, he might even be able to sell some of his creations.
After the daughter's graduation, the family moved to Vermont into the house with a barn. I
visited them after they got settled in their new home. He took me for a walk around their property and showed me his workshop. During our walk he let me know that before his first talk with me he was seriously tempted to pack up and immediately go to Vermont and leave his family behind. My eyes opened wide, and I had never gulped so loud in my entire life. In the worst of times, my brothers and sisters, when we are being driven by selfish temptations, or even in the best of times, we need to reach out to God to keep that relationship tight. As we stood in the barn in the presence of his creations, he asked me to say a prayer. I declined, and invited him to offer a prayer of thanksgiving. In time Tom went to work for the local high school teaching students how to work with wood.
Lent is getting closer my friends. I know I've said that in an earlier sermon. But I can't say too
often how important it is for us to look at our lives, our behaviors, and ask ourselves if there are things that we are doing that are not reflective of God's love. In other words that are the result of our yielding to temptation. Lent is coming; it's time to get on our knees or find a quiet space where we might have a conversation with God.

--Fr. C. Allan Ford



The AGM was held on Zoom January 24 following the 10:00 Service. The Vestry proposed the following slate: Warden - 2 Year term - Mark Debald; Vestry - 3 year terms - Pete Bedrossian, Colleen Misner and Gillian Prater-Lee. All were elected by unanimous consent -  There were no nominations from the floor.
Treasurer Dewy Clarke gave an overview of our finances and presented the annual budget for 2021. Shawn gave an update on the status of the furnace and the chimney repairs.  We are collecting estimates and are waiting to hear from the insurance company before we proceed. He announced that the Vestry will act as the search committee as recommended by the Diocese. Pete is chairing the Search. We may be looking for a part-time priest who we would share with another congregation (possibly St. James in Newburgh). This is based on financial figures obtained from the Diocese. There are a couple of priorities before we can advertise the position - we need input from the congregation and our website needs an overhaul since that will be the main way an inquiring priest would be introduced to St. Paul's.  That actually can replace the Parish Profile. You will be receiving a questionnaire soon asking for your thoughts and ideas. WE ARE ALL ST. PAUL'S CHURCH. So it is MOST IMPORTANT that you complete the questionnaire and return it. The Search Committee will also take part in a workshop for transitioning congregations shortly. Bobbie gave the Stewardship report - Pledges to date - 53 for $64,335 compares to last year at this time - 63 pledges for $75,477.   If you need a pledge form, please call the office and we'll send one to you. We know they can be misplaced.   We always give the Paraclete Potter award at the AGM. This award is given to a volunteer who isn't on the Vestry or in a committee leadership position. This year the award was given posthumously to Stephanie Campos who volunteered daily from March - September for Small Blessings and the Food Pantry. Her unexpected death in November was a very sad time for all volunteers who knew her.

Sunday Services will be on ZOOM until further notice
Our Zoom connections remain the same and are
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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.
--The Rev. Dcn. Julett Butler
Total deposits for the past week - $1,120  (no money 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.  



COVID-19 Vaccine Update

Dutchess Responds Vaccinate New York joint logo

February 9, 2021

To more effectively notify those who are eligible for COVID-19 vaccination appointments, Dutchess County's Department of Behavioral & Community Health is requiring everyone who wishes to continue receiving appointment notifications to complete the new Vaccination Information Request Form.

To receive notice when a vaccine appointment is available for you
at a County POD location, as well as weekly updates about area vaccine
allocations, please click the button below to fill out the form.

Complete form  
You must complete the form to continue to receive appointment updates
  • This form does NOT pre-register anyone for a COVID-19 vaccination appointment.
  • You will receive notice when an appointment is available to you at one of the Dutchess County Department of Behavioral & Community Health Points of Dispensing (PODs) locations. PLEASE NOTE: It may be several months before you're notified of an appointment.
  • You will also receive weekly updates about New York State's allocations to other area vaccine providers, including pharmacies, as information is provided by the State.
Those without internet access should call the Dutchess County Coronavirus Information Line at 845-486-3555, Option 1, to hear weekly vaccine updates. 

More Information

Thank you for your continued patience as we work to vaccinate residents as quickly as possible. Please continue coronavirus safety measures - wearing a face mask, frequent hand washing and physical distancing - to stop the spread of COVID-19.
For more information, visit 
Sign up for update when vaccine is available. Please share this site with others.
Pharmacies in our area are dispensing vaccines. Please visit these pharmacies like Rite Aid on South Ave. and Hooker Ave. and get your names on a list. As soon as an individual is eligible, the pharmacy will call. People can sign up with the county by clicking on the website link above as well.
 --The Rev. Dcn. Julett Butler 
Dutchess County Legislator Barrington Atkins will be working with Westchester Medical Center Health Network to provide a FREE PSYCHOLOGICAL FIRST AID TRAINING.  The training will focus on reducing the effects of trauma during and following a disaster and public health emergencies such as covid-19.
Space is limited. 

Blessed Absalom Jones Celebration Service
Officiant: The Rt. Rev. Andrew M. L. Dietsche, Bishop of New York 
Sermon:The Hon. Byron Rushing,Vice President of the House of Deputies
Saturday, February 20, 2021 | 10:30AM-12PM | via Facebook Livestream
  • Diocesan Festival Choir

  • Jay Hoggard - Jazz Musician

  • Tina Fabrique - Broadway Performer
  • Poet Gold - Spoken Word Artist

  • Michael James Leslie - Broadway Performer

  • Larry Marshall - Broadway Performer
Join Us in Collaborative Chorale!
Interested in participating in the online collaborative choir performance of We are Marching in the Light of God during the Absalom Jones celebration on 2/20/21?

Contact Jeannine Otis at by January 31 for more information and simple recording and uploading instructions!
Join the Virtual Procession!
This year our celebratory service procession will be virtual. If you would like to participate, please provide a few high resolution photos of your church banner, (ideally held by cheerful team members in front of your church!), or as a plan B, please provide a photo of your banner at an event or against a contrasting background. 
Please note: photos must be uploaded by Sunday, January 31 to be included in the procession.
Click here to upload your photos.
For questions, contact Allison Moore, or 845-633-8272.
Blessed Absalom Jones Mutual Aid Project
January through March 2021
Celebrate His Triumph and Continue His Work!
This year your congregation has the opportunity to continue the work of Blessed Absalom Jones by participating in a Diocesan-wide effort to help those in need in our communities. We suggest working with several organizations that are seeking tangible items to provide much needed support to those they serve. 
Make a Donation in Honor of Absalom Jones
Offerings associated with the Absalom Jones Celebration will be donated to Voorhees College in Denmark, South Carolina, a member of the Historically Black Colleges and Universities with a long-standing affiliation with the Episcopal Church.
To Donate by Check
Make Checks Payable to: Union of Black Episcopalians
Memo: Absalom Jones
Mail To: Mabel Wernham, Treasurer
2040 Bruckner Blvd, Apt 14A
Bronx, NY 10473
Organized by the Absalom Jones Celebration Committee of the Episcopal Diocese of New York.
For questions or more information, please email Carla Burns.

You are all invited to a Valentine's Benefit Concert held by and for the Grace Year Program, on Sunday, February 14th at 7pm.  It will be held on zoom.  The proceeds will support the Grace Year program, a young adult service learning program based at Grace Church Millbrook,  The Grace Year fellows spend a year living in intentional community, serving in social justice or social service organizations and developing professional skills and spiritual practices to sustain a lifetime of transformational leadership.  This year's fellows are talented musicians and they will be singing, playing music and speaking about their Grace Year experience.  Tickets are $20, $10 for students.   To purchase tickets, go to 
 --Shawn Prater-Lee
The Alzheimer's Foundation of American has a Teen Scholarship Essay Contest. Scholarships range from $5000.00 - $450.00. They gave away over $42,000.00 last year. Please pass on to any you know who might benefit.
NAMI Mid-Hudson
NAMI Mid-Hudson, Inc.
PO Box 787
Poughkeepsie, NY 12602
(please leave a message)


 2 Mertlyn Tomlinson  
14 Brooke Plain  
18 Celia Filor
    Stacy Babb     
15 Ade David Oni
19 Anita Santos-Bravo

 3 Jamal Wethington    

     Shawn Prater-Lee
23 William V Hyson
 9  Marlene Fisher
      William B. Rosborough 
25 Cynthia Benjamin
12 Aaron Bissessar 
16  Luis alberto Jr. Barban

13  Annastasia Schmouth 
18  George Reyes 


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:
Frank Burnett, Food Panty 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, Elyse, 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.


February 9-14, 2021

TUE       9
10:00am   Food Pantry & Thrift Shop

WED    10
10:00am   Food Pantry & Thrift Shop

THU     11
10:00am   Food Pantry & Thrift Shop

SAT      13
10:00am   Building & Grounds 

SUN     14
10:30am   Zoom - Rite II, Ante Communion





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