The Episcopal Church
of the Resurrection
1433 NW R.D. Mize Road, Blue Springs, MO
Weekly e-mail
Saturday, May 15, 2021
Seventh Sunday of Easter
The Sunday after Ascension Day
Sunday, May 16, 2021

Holy Eucharist Rite I at 8:00 am
Holy Eucharist Rite II at 10:30 am


Resurrection will host in-person services. COVID precautions will still be observed. All services also live-streamed.

Picture Attribution: Sheets, Millard, 1907-1989. Word of Life mural, from Art in the Christian Tradition, a project of the Vanderbilt Divinity Library, Nashville, TN https://diglib.library.vanderbilt.edu/act-imagelink.pl?RC=55058 
Please take the Renewal Works survey
20 MINUTES OF YOUR TIME TO EVALUATE OUR SPIRITUAL LIFE

We are very excited for everyone at the Church of the Resurrection to take the RenewalWorks Spiritual Life Inventory, and even more excited to see what the survey will provide us as we look to grow our spiritual life individually and together as a parish.

Through an anonymous online evaluation of each parishioner, and a series of workshop discussions, the RenewalWorks process helps churches (and the individuals in them) refocus on spiritual growth and identify ways that God is calling them to grow.

We prayerfully request that all us complete the survey. There are paper copies available for anyone who cannot complete the survey online, including an addressed envelope for you to return your survey directly to RenewalWorks.
 
The online link to the Spiritual Life Inventory for Episcopal Church of the Resurrection in Blue Springs is https://www.research.net/r/RenewalWorks2257

Almighty and eternal God, so draw our hearts to you, so guide our minds, so fill our imaginations, so control our wills, that we may be wholly yours, utterly dedicated to you; and then use us, we pray, as you will, and always to your glory and the welfare of your people; through our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Amen.
Devin Conn Graduation Reception
SUNDAY, MAY 23 FOLLOWING 10:30 SERVICE

Congrats to our own Devin Conn upon his graduation this month from Blue Springs High School! Devin has been a big part of our parish his entire life and we wish him much success as he leaves us in July to join the U.S. Navy. The reception will follow the 10:30 am service on Sunday, May 23. 
Zumwalt 50th Anniversary Open House
SATURDAY, JUNE 5, 1:00 - 4:00 PM

Parish members and friends are invited to celebrate Gary and Maura Zumwalt's 50th wedding anniversary on Saturday June 5 anytime between 1:00 - 4:00 pm in the church undercroft.

Snacks and refreshments will be served! 
From Fr. David+
Fr. David Lynch picture
LOOKING TO THE FUTURE

Dear parish family and friends,

We are at an important time in our parish life. We have weathered a tough year with medical, financial and community challenges. We have learned new programs for defining “church” in our worship and fellowship. And as we get close to overcoming the pandemic, we will be working to get back to a sense of normalcy in worship and fellowship.

At the May Vestry meeting (which was held before the CDC released its new mask guidance) a consensus was reached to begin to return to full communion and fellowship, with some COVID restrictions. As people begin to feel more comfortable about meeting in person for worship, we will re-introduce the common cup along with bread from the Paten. We will offer several ways to receive Holy Communion that will include (1) continuing to use the sealed double chalice with wafer and wine, (2) have the common cup and allow intinction and (3) allow those who wish to receive from the common cup to do so. The Vestry suggested we start this practice July 4, which will give us time to bring back Eucharistic Ministers and Servers at the Altar. This will mean offering preparation classes for those interested in becoming Eucharistic Ministers and to provide refresher training for those who are currently trained. I am very excited for us to cautiously move in this direction!

Another important issue for us is whether we can move forward with a capital campaign to relocate the stairs and install a wheelchair lift. The information we received from the feasibility survey indicated strong support for the project. However, the soft financial commitments received were not sufficient for the Vestry to move forward with a capital campaign at this time. The Vestry voted to approach the architect and builder again to see if the construction plans could be modified to accomplish our primary goals but reduce the cost. Once the Vestry gets a new idea of what, if any, changes can be done, a series of parish meetings will be scheduled to discuss the plans and possibilities and receive feedback from the congregation through questions and comments.

These are exciting times with considerations that will provide a long future for our parish. I know things can appear impossible sometimes, but please know God is a big part of this and with the grace of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit, we can indeed succeed in what Resurrection can be for the years to come.
CSL need request
FOOD DONATIONS NEEDED

The Community Services League of Blue Springs is requesting food donations for families who are needing assistance. Anything is appreciated, but particular needs include pasta/pasta sauce, canned tomato products, rice side dishes, cereal, Jiffy Corn mix, Jello, and cake mixes. Please bring your donation to the church and we will deliver it to CSL. Thank you for your generosity!
Lectors and Acolytes Needed
PLEASE VOLUNTEER

We need volunteers to read scripture and serve at the altar as we emerge from Covid. If you are currently a lector and/or eucharistic minister and would like to return to reading, please contact Diane Gerlach at 816-896-2875. If you would like to be an acolyte, please contact Lisa Twitty at 913-485-7150
Monday Matters (May 10, 2021)
BY FR. JAY SIDEBOTHAM +

As they were watching, Jesus was lifted up, and a cloud took him out of their sight. While he was going and they were gazing up toward heaven, suddenly two men in white robes stood by them. They said, “Men of Galilee, why do you stand looking up toward heaven? This Jesus, who has been taken up from you into heaven, will come in the same way as you saw him go into heaven.” Then they returned to Jerusalem from the mount called Olivet, which is near Jerusalem, a sabbath day’s journey away. When they had entered the city, they went to the room upstairs where they were staying, Peter, and John, and James, and Andrew, Philip and Thomas, Bartholomew and Matthew, James son of Alphaeus, and Simon the Zealot, and Judas son of James. All these were constantly devoting themselves to prayer, together with certain women, including Mary the mother of Jesus, as well as his brothers. -Acts 1:9-14

What next?

Later this week, we will observe the Feast of the Ascension, celebrating the story told by Luke in his gospel and in the book of Acts, the story of Jesus ascending into heaven. The feast falls 40 days after Easter, which means it’s always on a Thursday, one of the reasons it doesn’t get as much notice as Christmas, Easter and Pentecost. I consider this feast to be underrated. Where would we be without it?

It’s important as a feast because it answers questions about what happened to Jesus, and where he is now, and how we should live in light of that. It opens the way for our understanding, our confidence, our hope that Jesus’ story is not just a matter of history. Jesus is is still very much with us and will be with us to the end of the ages. Our faith is more than memory.

No doubt about it, it’s a strange story which may also contribute to its underrated status. How do we make sense of it? It’s possible to get caught up in the logistics. Can modern people really believe that such a thing happened? What were the physics involved? Was gravity suspended?

Someday, maybe they’ll be answers for those logistical questions. For me, maybe the more important question is the one I imagine the disciples asked each other. They realize Jesus is gone, so what do they do now? How do they move forward? There may be times when we ask these kinds of questions.

What are the experiences that have caused you to ask: Where do I go from here? What’s next? Those kinds of questions surface when we’ve come down from a mountaintop experience, in the wake of exciting life changing events. A joyous occasion like a wedding or the birth of a child. A powerful spiritual epiphany. The same questions may come when we emerge from a valley. A relationship ends. You get fired, or experience betrayal. I’ll always remember being with a woman in the ICU as her husband of more than sixty years died. She looked up at me shortly after monitors indicated end of life and said: What do I do now? She was talking about a lot more than contacting hospital staff or funeral home.

Maybe you’re asking some version of these questions this morning. The questions are especially appropriate as we come out of Covid. This may be a season in our common life when we need the message of Ascension Day more than ever, as the feast causes us to ask: Where do we go from here? How do we arrive at a new normal? Like those disciples, we don’t know what lies ahead. It’s a pretty safe bet that our road ahead will take us to new places. New life will emerge but a lot will not be as we remember it. Maybe we’re nostalgic for a past that actually wasn’t as rosy as we wish it was. Maybe, just maybe, the old normal is not a place to which we ought to return.

The disciples heard angels’ instructions. They went back to Jerusalem. They stuck together. They prayed. They waited. They held on to promise. In due time, they experience the fulfillment of Jesus’ promise, the powerful presence of the Spirit. Maybe there’s a word in there for us.

As we navigate emergence from COVID:

  • How can we stay together in community, counting on each other for support? What community can you count on these days (even if it’s still on zoom)?
  • How can we hold prayer at the center of our forward movement, recognizing our need for God’s gracious help? What will be your prayer? What will you ask for?
  • How can we express our trust in the living Lord who promises that we will not be left alone? What promise from Jesus sustains you?

If we can do these things in this unusual season, maybe we can celebrate Ascension Day by saying that things are looking up.
Ascension Day: Thursday May 13

REPRINTED FROM CATHOLIC ON-LINE

"So then the Lord Jesus, after he had spoken to them, was taken up into heaven, and sat down at the right hand of God."  Christ's body was glorified at the moment of his Resurrection, as proved by the new and supernatural properties it subsequently and permanently enjoys.  But during the forty days when he eats and drinks familiarly with his disciples and teaches them about the kingdom, his glory remains veiled under the appearance of ordinary humanity. Jesus' final apparition ends with the irreversible entry of his humanity into divine glory, symbolized by the cloud and by heaven, where he is seated from that time forward at God's right hand. Only in a wholly exceptional and unique way would Jesus show himself to Paul "as to one untimely born", in a last apparition that established him as an apostle. 

The veiled character of the glory of the Risen One during this time is intimated in his mysterious words to Mary Magdalene: "I have not yet ascended to the Father; but go to my brethren and say to them, I am ascending to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God." This indicates a difference in manifestation between the glory of the risen Christ and that of the Christ exalted to the Father's right hand, a transition marked by the historical and transcendent event of the Ascension. This final stage stays closely linked to the first, that is, to his descent from heaven in the Incarnation. Only the one who "came from the Father" can return to the Father: Christ Jesus. "No one has ascended into heaven but he who descended from heaven, the Son of man." Left to its own natural powers humanity does not have access to the "Father's house", to God's life and happiness. Only Christ can open to man such access that we, his members, might have confidence that we too shall go where he, our Head and our Source, has preceded us. 

"And I, when I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all men to myself." The lifting up of Jesus on the cross signifies and announces his lifting up by his Ascension into heaven, and indeed begins it. Jesus Christ, the one priest of the new and eternal Covenant, "entered, not into a sanctuary made by human hands. . . but into heaven itself, now to appear in the presence of God on our behalf." There Christ permanently exercises his priesthood, for he "always lives to make intercession" for "those who draw near to God through him". As "high priest of the good things to come" he is the center and the principal actor of the liturgy that honors the Father in heaven. 

Henceforth Christ is seated at the right hand of the Father: "By 'the Father's right hand' we understand the glory and honor of divinity, where he who exists as Son of God before all ages, indeed as God, of one being with the Father, is seated bodily after he became incarnate and his flesh was glorified." 

Being seated at the Father's right hand signifies the inauguration of the Messiah's kingdom, the fulfillment of the prophet Daniel's vision concerning the Son of man: "To him was given dominion and glory and kingdom, that all peoples, nations, and languages should serve him; his dominion is an everlasting dominion, which shall not pass away, and his kingdom one that shall not be destroyed." After this event the apostles became witnesses of the "kingdom [that] will have no end". 

Christ's Ascension marks the definitive entrance of Jesus' humanity into God's heavenly domain, whence he will come again (cf. Acts 1:11); this humanity in the meantime hides him from the eyes of men (cf. Col 3:3).

Jesus Christ, the head of the Church, precedes us into the Father's glorious kingdom so that we, the members of his Body, may live in the hope of one day being with him for ever.

Jesus Christ, having entered the sanctuary of heaven once and for all, intercedes constantly for us as the mediator who assures us of the permanent outpouring of the Holy Spirit.

Grant, we pray, Almighty God, that as we believe your only-begotten Son our Lord Jesus Christ to have ascended into heaven, so we may also in heart and mind there ascend, and with him continually dwell; who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.