The Friday Reflection
August 21, 2020
The Rev. Carolyn Woodall, Deacon

Leadership can take many forms, sometimes depending on the organization or group, the personality of the one leading, the circumstances, some combination of these factors and, I’m sure, some I didn’t think about.
I retired from the Navy and there, authority was strictly hierarchical. At Officer Candidate School we were taught that leadership meant exercising that authority fairly, impartially, and from afar – or from on high, if you prefer, although “on high” meant at least a couple of levels higher than you, and most often referred to the commanding officer. Orders were given and failure to obey them would have consequences. The primary concern was the mission. The welfare of the troops and morale were important, but always subordinate to the mission.
Many companies have a similar structure, except the bottom line is, all too often, the primary consideration and the lower echelon workers are expendable – there are always people looking for work, after all.
Sounds like a good model for the church – yes? Well, no – at least it should not be, although I’ve seen it from time to time, as I’m sure is the case for most of us. My own experience with this kind of leadership is that it is goal oriented, whether it be a military mission or maximizing profits. The people in the organization are a resource for obtaining a goal. In many churches there is still a goal. Butts in the pews and maximizing giving. Hmm, goals are nice, but those are the wrong goals.
When I think of good church leadership my mind immediately goes to the Gospel according to John, Chapter 13. That’s where we find the story of Jesus washing his disciples’ feet. Before the Feast of the Passover, during supper, Jesus got up, took off his outer robe, wrapped a towel around his waist and washed his disciples’ feet. The disciples were quite uncomfortable, and Peter expressed his discomfort at Jesus washing his feet. We all know how they felt. On Maundy Thursday we enact this act of Jesus. We are likely all uncomfortable with someone, often the clergy and lay leaders, washing our feet.
But Jesus had a lesson to teach. “After he had washed their feet, had put on his robe, and had returned to the table, he said to them, ‘Do you know what I have done to you? You call me Teacher and Lord-and you are right, for that is what I am. So if I, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another’s feet. For I have set you an example, that you also should do as I have done to you.”
Jesus performed a simple act of service to his disciples, teaching them the importance of service to others. That’s our lesson for leadership – that we are all simply human and, as I’ve preached before, we are all valuable and important to God. And so it should be with us. Servant leadership has a goal, but it isn’t butts in the pews or maximizing giving. Our goal is to build up and support each other. We should lead with a towel around our waist, giving to those we lead that which they need to grow closer to God and to each other. Leadership should not consist of saying, “I want you to do this,” but to say, “How can I help?”
Deacon Carolyn Woodall

Observe the Season of Creation at your congregation!
The Season of Creation is celebrated every year by Christians around the world from September 1st, the Day of Prayer for Creation, and runs through October 4th, St. Francis Day. This year’s theme has been chosen to be Jubilee for the Earth: New Rhythms, New Hope. This is fitting given the major challenges of this Spring and Summer. Our hope is that every community in the diocese will celebrate the Season of Creation. More information including liturgical and formation resources as well as ways to register your events can be found here: https://seasonofcreation.org/
The Season of Creation is a time to renew our relationship with our Creator and all creation through repenting, repairing, and rejoicing together. During the Season of Creation, we join our siblings in the ecumenical family in prayer and action for our common home.
This year, amid crises that have shaken our world, we’re awakened to the urgent need to heal our relationships with creation and each other. During the season this year, we enter a time of restoration and hope, a jubilee for our Earth, that requires radically new ways of living with creation.
The Season of Creation unites the world’s 2.2 billion Christians around one shared purpose. With so much injustice all around us, now is the time for Christians everywhere to come together and show the world how to love each other and creation.
The Episcopal church has also developed some good resources. There are resources on both the Season of Creation and St. Francis day, and their hope is that Episcopalians will take these and plan worship services, and other ways to celebrate the Season. Find these resources here: https://episcopalchurch.org/season-creation-and-st-francis-day-resources
Any questions about the Season of Creation or any of the available resources, please reach out to The Rev. Terrance Goodpasture at deaconterrance@diosanjoaquin.org.

Spend Time Outside This Week

Take some time to appreciate the outdoors this week. Go for a walk, play with your kids, play sports, or go to the park. Find ways to enjoy challenging weather such as snow, rain, and heat. Enjoy God’s beautiful creation.

“Those who live south of our border and who seek a better life in ‘the beautiful north’, those who patrol that same border, and those detained at the border are not stock players in a political drama. They aren’t one-dimensional characters in a newsreel, and while stereotyping and typecasting them may make it more comfortable or manageable for us to deal with the ‘problem’ as a whole, it distances us from their humanity, and consequently, I would argue, from our own.” – The Rev. Luis Rodriguez

The collection of artwork comes from the Tornillo Children’s Detention Camp where close to 3,000 unaccompanied minors from Central and South America were held. Art was a way to express their faith, the love of their family and friends, and pride in their homeland.
To learn more about the artwork, read this article from the New York Times

 Friday Reflection
All articles and special news can be submitted to the Diocesan Office at: dioadmin@diosanjoaquin.org
All submissions are due MONDAY for the following Friday Reflection.
Submission requirements:
pictures -JPEG format
articles- word document
document to link- PDF
Please edit pictures for best brightness, contrast, and lighting before sending.

Events Warranting Your
Participation and Prayers

   Diocesan Events
Deacon’s Gathering with Bishop David
August 22 | 10 AM
ZOOM
Diocesan/Cathedral Worship
SJRAISE – Virtual Bible Study

August 25 | 6:00 PM
ZOOM
DC/SC Joint Meeting
August 29 | 10 AM
ZOOM
Diocesan/Cathedral Worship

Annual Diocesan Convention 2020

 the Church in all seasons
Call to Convention
Find all the annual convention information on our website!
Key Dates:
Resolutions | September 14, 2020
Nominations for Elected Offices | September 28, 2020
Reports to Convention | October 1, 2020
Audit Reports | October 1, 2020
Convention Registration | October 16, 2020

Event Information

A Day of Discernment Coming:
Saturday, September 5, 2020
The Commission on Ministry for the Diocese of San Joaquin invites you to a Day of Discernment on Saturday, September 5 from 9:30 a.m. until 1:30 p.m. via Zoom. The day is designed to examine the four types of ministries in the Episcopal Church, to see how these
groups work together, and to find out where we are “Called to be…” in response to our baptismal vows. The day will include a Bible Study based on the Kaleidoscope Method, an exploration of how we are called to use our gifts and talents to further God’s kingdom, and a question and answer period about the ordination process, whether it is for the diaconate or the priesthood.
There is no cost for this event. There will be an opportunity for further study if you desire to learn more about ordination.
For more information, please contact Rev. Angela Lerena, Diocesan Administrator: dioadmin@diosanjoaquin.org.

REGISTER NOW!
St. James Sunday School launches digitally on Sunday, September 13th. During the digital church period, St. James Sunday School is open to all school-aged children in the Diocese. Registration is required to participate! The kick-off session will begin with student check-in at 9:00AM and the lesson will begin at 9:15AM. The first day of Sunday School is designed for the whole family to join-in. The morning will include the blessing of the teachers and the students. We invite you to check out the St. James Children’s Ministry web page for more about our ministry with children and our curriculum Weaving God’s Promises.
SUNDAY SCHOOL TEACHERS ARE NEEDED
Teacher recruitment period is now! If you feel called to the ministry of the spiritual formation of children, please send an email to teach@stjamesfresno.org. Teachers can be members of any Episcopal congregation in the Diocese.
Prior to the first session, Dean Ryan and the Sunday School Committee will host via ZOOM an Orientation and Training session for all interested teachers. No prior teaching or Sunday School experience is required-all that is required is a willing and committed heart to educating the next generation of the Church. In addition to the Orientation and Training session, teachers will be required to take an online training module called Safeguarding God’s Children–an in-depth educational and training program for preventing and responding to child sexual abuse in everyday life and in ministry.
BASIC INFORMATION
Classes are Sundays at 9:15AM on ZOOM. Registration for Sunday School opens August 1st. Please visit St. James website for link to registration. The first session is Sunday, September 13th and the whole family is invited to participate.
CURRICULUM
Weaving God’s Promises is a comprehensive, three-year Christian education curriculum for children developed and written exclusively for the Episcopal Church. Weaving God’s Promises’ 30-minute lesson plans are accessed online. There will be a “take-home” paper, Threads, that will be emailed to every family after each lesson. Threads allows families to continue the conversation and theme throughout the week.
BASIC SUNDAY SCHOOL LESSON FORMAT
  1. Gathering and Greeting
  2. Sunday School Prayer
  3. Sunday School Song
  4. About the Scripture Story
  5. Telling the Story
  6. Activity Related to the Story
  7. Weaving Our Faith: Conversation about the story
  8. Closing Prayer
TEACHER COVENANT OF COMMITMENT
(Developed by Sunday School Committee)
With God’s Help I Covenant 
To practice the spiritual disciplines of scripture reading and prayer.
  • Worship on Sundays and be an active member of the St. James community or other church in the Episcopal Diocese of San Joaquin.
  • Be prepared: Read the curriculum and plan my lessons.
  • Grow in my faith and understanding of my work through educational opportunities as offered.
  • Practice inclusive hospitality as Jesus teaches us the love of God is the love of neighbor.

.
The Episcopal Diocese of San Joaquin, 4147 E Dakota AVE, Fresno, CA 93726
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The Friday Reflection
August 14, 2020
The Rev. Gail Bernthal

“And Jesus said to them, ‘Follow me, and I will make you fish for people.’ Immediately they left their nets and followed him.” (Matthew 4:19-20)
This scene from Matthew’s Gospel takes us to the shore of the Sea of Galilee. As Peter and Andrew cast their fishing net into the sea, Jesus walks by and invites them to follow. With these few words, Jesus beckons them to leave behind the security of the life they know and follow Him, body, mind and spirit, into the unknown. Peter and Andrew are faced with a decision. Will they accept Jesus’ invitation? They immediately leave their nets and follow Him. They have heard about Jesus from John the Baptist. Jesus is different from any leader ever known. Many will come to call Him rabbi, not so much because of what he does, but because of who He is; a teacher, a servant and because of his love, both for those who follow Him and those who do not. Peter and Andrew trust Him. They do not know where Jesus is going, but they are ready to follow and offer Him their hearts.
What do we learn from Jesus about choosing a guide or a mentor? What do we learn about who to trust to lead us into places we would never have gone on our own, to help us be more than we ever would have been?
Jesus invited the disciples not only to listen to His words, but to come and see how He lived His life. The disciples saw in Jesus a life that was rooted in prayer. He often went away by Himself to pray, and everything He did was a reflection of prayer. He continually had one eye on His Father, the other on His companions.
Jesus loved His companions. He loved each of them for who they were, unique individuals with gifts and talents given by God. Jesus reminded them how important they were and what a different their lives could make.
Jesus told the truth, even when it was a truth no one wanted to hear. He told the disciples He must die on the cross in order for there to be new life for the world. “No one has greater love than this, to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.” (John 15:13). He told this truth over and over.
He was a servant to His disciples. He knelt down and washed their dirty, calloused feet because He loved them, and as an example of how He wanted them to live their lives, as servants of each other.
Jesus was not ambitious in a worldly way. His desire was to do the will of His Father, and to turn the hearts of his followers toward God so they would in turn, keep one eye God and the other on their companions, and do even greater works than He.
Jesus teaches us to trust those who are genuine, wise, and honest. He teaches us to choose guides who are loving, humble, and who never lose sight of God, who is goodness and love.

MESSAGE FROM DEAN RYAN
August 13, 2020
Dear Cathedral Congregation of St. James,
In the beautiful passage from Ecclesiastes (3:1-8), we are reminded “for everything there is a season.” During the pandemic, we have had to adapt to new ways of living. It feels each new day is a new season-some days a time to weep and mourn, and other days a time to laugh and dance. Both the COVID-19 pandemic and my health scare this winter have been stark reminders of the fragility of life and the importance of being surrounded by family. These reminders have evolved into valuable lessons for our family. Ultimately, they have led us to make some significant, life-changing decisions for our long-term future as a family, especially as Erin and I look to raise Lexie in a complex and ever-changing world.
After a great deal of prayer, reflection, and conversation, I have made the very difficult decision to request of the Bishop, and the Bishop has consented, to my resignation as the Dean of St. James Cathedral effective October 16, 2020.
Erin, Lexie, and I will be relocating this November to Orange County (Southern California) to be closer to family. More than ever, due to some very recent developments with our aging parents, we are feeling called to be present with our parents who will need continuing support and care. This transition to our hometown will also allow Lexie to grow up surrounded by grandparents, aunts, uncles, and cousins-all who call Orange County home. This year’s events have made Erin and I aware that we deeply value Lexie being able to grow up in a “familial village.” Our move will be a significant leap of faith because neither Erin nor I have secured employment.
We leave with heavy hearts for the great work we have done together in two years and for the work left undone by our departure. St. James Cathedral and the Episcopal Diocese of San Joaquin have loved, cared for, and shaped our family and me in so many remarkable ways. We are forever grateful for the congregation’s goodness, generosity, and support.
During this COVID-19 period, it will be challenging to conclude our ministry and time together in the traditional manner. We are heartbroken that we will likely be unable to say our goodbyes within the Cathedral walls. However, as we have done so thoughtfully and creatively these past couple of months, we will develop an appropriate digital environment to conclude our time together and to say our goodbyes. Please know, we will carry our fond Cathedral memories with us wherever we go and in whatever we do.
“Glory to God whose power, working in us, can do infinitely more than we can ask or imagine.” (Ephesians 3:20)
Faithfully in Christ,
THE VERY REVEREND RYAN D. NEWMAN
DEAN

VIDEO MESSAGE FROM DEAN RYAN
Following up on his written announcement, Dean Ryan wanted to take a few moments to offer some additional and more personal words to the Cathedral Congregation. We invite you to view the video below.

Special Message from Dean Ryan
Special Message from Dean Ryan

“Those who live south of our border and who seek a better life in ‘the beautiful north’, those who patrol that same border, and those detained at the border are not stock players in a political drama. They aren’t one-dimensional characters in a newsreel, and while stereotyping and typecasting them may make it more comfortable or manageable for us to deal with the ‘problem’ as a whole, it distances us from their humanity, and consequently, I would argue, from our own.” – The Rev. Luis Rodriguez

The collection of artwork comes from the Tornillo Children’s Detention Camp where close to 3,000 unaccompanied minors from Central and South America were held. Art was a way to express their faith, the love of their family and friends, and pride in their homeland.
To learn more about the artwork, read this article from the New York Times

EDSJ Virtual Bible Study
No Longer Strangers: Exploring Immigration Issues
The study is scheduled for consecutive Tuesdays in August (11th, 18th, 25th) and Tuesday, September 1st from 6-7 pm via Zoom. No Longer Strangers was developed by Forward Movement in conultation with staff from Episcopal Migrations Ministries and the Office of Government Relations of The Episcopal Church. It examines the complex issue of immigration and offers a chance for discussion of this topic from a Biblical perspective.

Please share the flyer with your congregation and invite them to participate in a Bible-based study about this important and timely issue. Each meeting will be co-facilitated by an EDSJ clergy person.

Spend Time Outside This Week

Take some time to appreciate the outdoors this week. Go for a walk, play with your kids, play sports, or go to the park. Find ways to enjoy challenging weather such as snow, rain, and heat. Enjoy God’s beautiful creation.

 Friday Reflection
All articles and special news can be submitted to the Diocesan Office at: dioadmin@diosanjoaquin.org
All submissions are due MONDAY for the following Friday Reflection.
Submission requirements:
pictures -JPEG format
articles- word document
document to link- PDF
Please edit pictures for best brightness, contrast, and lighting before sending.

Events Warranting Your
Participation and Prayers

   Diocesan Events
Diocesan/Cathedral Worship
SJRAISE – Virtual Bible Study

August 18 | 6:00 PM
ZOOM
Creation Care Commission Animators/Advocates Gathering
August 18 | 7:00 PM
ZOOM
Bishop and Canon Visitation
August 19 | 7:00 PM
Ridgecrest – ZOOM
COVID Clergy Conversations
August 20 | 12:30 PM
ZOOM
Deacon’s Gathering with Bishop David
August 22 | 10 AM
ZOOM
Diocesan/Cathedral Worship
SJRAISE – Virtual Bible Study

August 25 | 6:00 PM
ZOOM
Bishop and Canon Visitation
August 26 | 7:00 PM
St. John’s, Stockton – ZOOM
COVID Clergy Conversations
August 27 | 12:30 PM
ZOOM
DC/SC Joint Meeting
August 29 | 10 AM
ZOOM
Diocesan/Cathedral Worship

 the Church in all seasons
Call to Convention
Today is the day! Call to Convention will go out today!
Convention will be held November 13th and 14th on the EDSJ Convention Platform! Look for all the materials later today, and in the upcoming Friday Reflections.

A Day of Discernment Coming:
Saturday, September 5, 2020
The Commission on Ministry for the Diocese of San Joaquin invites you to a Day of Discernment on Saturday, September 5 from 9:30 a.m. until 1:30 p.m. via Zoom. The day is designed to examine the four types of ministries in the Episcopal Church, to see how these
groups work together, and to find out where we are “Called to be…” in response to our baptismal vows. The day will include a Bible Study based on the Kaleidoscope Method, an exploration of how we are called to use our gifts and talents to further God’s kingdom, and a question and answer period about the ordination process, whether it is for the diaconate or the priesthood.
There is no cost for this event. There will be an opportunity for further study if you desire to learn more about ordination.
For more information, please contact Rev. Angela Lerena, Diocesan Administrator: dioadmin@diosanjoaquin.org.

REGISTER NOW!
St. James Sunday School launches digitally on Sunday, September 13th. During the digital church period, St. James Sunday School is open to all school-aged children in the Diocese. Registration is required to participate! The kick-off session will begin with student check-in at 9:00AM and the lesson will begin at 9:15AM. The first day of Sunday School is designed for the whole family to join-in. The morning will include the blessing of the teachers and the students. We invite you to check out the St. James Children’s Ministry web page for more about our ministry with children and our curriculum Weaving God’s Promises.
SUNDAY SCHOOL TEACHERS ARE NEEDED
Teacher recruitment period is now! If you feel called to the ministry of the spiritual formation of children, please send an email to teach@stjamesfresno.org. Teachers can be members of any Episcopal congregation in the Diocese.
Prior to the first session, Dean Ryan and the Sunday School Committee will host via ZOOM an Orientation and Training session for all interested teachers. No prior teaching or Sunday School experience is required-all that is required is a willing and committed heart to educating the next generation of the Church. In addition to the Orientation and Training session, teachers will be required to take an online training module called Safeguarding God’s Children–an in-depth educational and training program for preventing and responding to child sexual abuse in everyday life and in ministry.
BASIC INFORMATION
Classes are Sundays at 9:15AM on ZOOM. Registration for Sunday School opens August 1st. Please visit St. James website for link to registration. The first session is Sunday, September 13th and the whole family is invited to participate.
CURRICULUM
Weaving God’s Promises is a comprehensive, three-year Christian education curriculum for children developed and written exclusively for the Episcopal Church. Weaving God’s Promises’ 30-minute lesson plans are accessed online. There will be a “take-home” paper, Threads, that will be emailed to every family after each lesson. Threads allows families to continue the conversation and theme throughout the week.
BASIC SUNDAY SCHOOL LESSON FORMAT
  1. Gathering and Greeting
  2. Sunday School Prayer
  3. Sunday School Song
  4. About the Scripture Story
  5. Telling the Story
  6. Activity Related to the Story
  7. Weaving Our Faith: Conversation about the story
  8. Closing Prayer
TEACHER COVENANT OF COMMITMENT
(Developed by Sunday School Committee)
With God’s Help I Covenant 
To practice the spiritual disciplines of scripture reading and prayer.
  • Worship on Sundays and be an active member of the St. James community or other church in the Episcopal Diocese of San Joaquin.
  • Be prepared: Read the curriculum and plan my lessons.
  • Grow in my faith and understanding of my work through educational opportunities as offered.
  • Practice inclusive hospitality as Jesus teaches us the love of God is the love of neighbor.

.
The Episcopal Diocese of San Joaquin, 4147 E Dakota AVE, Fresno, CA 93726
Sent by contact@diosanjoaquin.org powered by
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Devotion for the Morning

From Psalm 51

Open my lips, O Lord, *
and my mouth shall proclaim your praise.
Create in me a clean heart, O God, *
and renew a right spirit within me.
Cast me not away from your presence *
and take not your holy Spirit from me.
Give me the joy of your saving help again *
and sustain me with your bountiful Spirit.
Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit: *
as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be forever. Amen.

A Reading (Acts 21:15-26)

After this, we started on our way up to Jerusalem. Some of the disciples from Caesarea accompanied us and brought us to the home of Mnason, where we were to stay. He was a man from Cyprus and one of the early disciples.

When we arrived at Jerusalem, the brothers and sisters received us warmly. The next day Paul and the rest of us went to see James, and all the elders were present. Paul greeted them and reported in detail what God had done among the Gentiles through his ministry.

When they heard this, they praised God. Then they said to Paul: “You see, brother, how many thousands of Jews have believed, and all of them are zealous for the law. They have been informed that you teach all the Jews who live among the Gentiles to turn away from Moses, telling them not to circumcise their children or live according to our customs. What shall we do? They will certainly hear that you have come, so do what we tell you. There are four men with us who have made a vow. Take these men, join in their purification rites and pay their expenses, so that they can have their heads shaved. Then everyone will know there is no truth in these reports about you, but that you yourself are living in obedience to the law. As for the Gentile believers, we have written to them our decision that they should abstain from food sacrificed to idols, from blood, from the meat of strangled animals and from sexual immorality.”

The next day Paul took the men and purified himself along with them. Then he went to the temple to give notice of the date when the days of purification would end and the offering would be made for each of them.

 A period of silence may follow.

The Apostles’ Creed

I believe in God, the Father almighty,
maker of heaven and earth;
And in Jesus Christ his only Son our Lord;
who was conceived by the Holy Spirit,
born of the Virgin Mary,
suffered under Pontius Pilate,
was crucified, dead, and buried.
He descended to the dead.
The third day he rose again from the dead.
He ascended into heaven,
and sits at the right hand of God the Father.
he shall come to judge the living and the dead.
I believe in the Holy Spirit,
the holy catholic Church,
the communion of saints,
the forgiveness of sins,
the resurrection of the body,
and the life everlasting. Amen.

Prayers may be offered for ourselves and others.

The Lord’s Prayer

Our Father, who art in heaven,
hallowed be thy Name,
thy kingdom come,
thy will be done,
on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread.
And forgive us our trespasses,
as we forgive those
who trespass against us.
And lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from evil.
For thine is the kingdom,
and the power, and the glory,
for ever and ever. Amen.

The Collect

Lord God, almighty and everlasting Father, you have brought
us in safety to this new day: Preserve us with your mighty
power, that we may not fall into sin, nor be overcome by
adversity; and in all we do, direct us to the fulfilling of your
purpose; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

_________________________________________________

Devotion for the Evening

O gracious light,
pure brightness of the ever living Father in heaven,
O Jesus Christ, holy and blessed!
Now as we come to the setting of the sun,
and our eyes behold the vesper light,
we sing your praises, O God: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.
You are worthy at all times to be praised by happy voices,
O Son of God, O Giver of Life,
and to be glorified through all the worlds.

A Reading (Mark 10:17-31)

As Jesus started on his way, a man ran up to him and fell on his knees before him. “Good teacher,” he asked, “what must I do to inherit eternal life?”

“Why do you call me good?” Jesus answered. “No one is good—except God alone. You know the commandments: ‘You shall not murder, you shall not commit adultery, you shall not steal, you shall not give false testimony, you shall not defraud, honor your father and mother.’”

“Teacher,” he declared, “all these I have kept since I was a boy.”

Jesus looked at him and loved him. “One thing you lack,” he said. “Go, sell everything you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.”

At this the man’s face fell. He went away sad, because he had great wealth.

Jesus looked around and said to his disciples, “How hard it is for the rich to enter the kingdom of God!”

The disciples were amazed at his words. But Jesus said again, “Children, how hard it is to enter the kingdom of God! It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for someone who is rich to enter the kingdom of God.”

The disciples were even more amazed, and said to each other, “Who then can be saved?”

Jesus looked at them and said, “With man this is impossible, but not with God; all things are possible with God.”

Then Peter spoke up, “We have left everything to follow you!”

“Truly I tell you,” Jesus replied, “no one who has left home or brothers or sisters or mother or father or children or fields for me and the gospel will fail to receive a hundred times as much in this present age: homes, brothers, sisters, mothers, children and fields—along with persecutions—and in the age to come eternal life. But many who are first will be last, and the last first.”

 Prayers may be offered for ourselves and others. 

The Lord’s Prayer

Our Father, who art in heaven,
hallowed be thy Name,
thy kingdom come,
thy will be done,
on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread.
And forgive us our trespasses,
as we forgive those
who trespass against us.
And lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from evil.
For thine is the kingdom,
and the power, and the glory,
for ever and ever. Amen.

The Collect

Lord Jesus, stay with us, for evening is at hand and the day is
past; be our companion in the way, kindle our hearts, and
awaken hope, that we may know you as you are revealed in
Scripture and the breaking of bread. Grant this for the sake
of your love. Amen.

Peace,

Rev. Ryan G. Eikenbary
Priest-in-Charge, Episcopal Church of St. Anne
Pastor, Zion Lutheran Church
rev.eikenbary@gmail.com
The Friday Reflection
August 7, 2020
Toni Alvarez, Postulant from St. James Cathedral

My second year at Seminary of the Southwest begins on Monday August 31st. I will begin my Field Education assignment at Proyecto Santiago a Spanish-speaking mission at Saint James Episcopal Church in Austin. One could say that leadership is on my mind as I continue my formation for Holy Orders; one of the many things that I have learned is that as Christians and as Episcopalians we turn first to the Scriptures and to the example of our ancestors in the faith.
This coming Sunday’s lessons are a feast when we attend to them carefully, though what they teach us about leadership takes a bit of digging. This Sunday’s Gospel is the well-known story of Christ walking on water, and bidding Peter to join him found in Matthew chapter 14. We generally focus on Peter and the disciples in this story, but if we focus on Jesus here, we can learn a little about Jesus as a teacher and a leader.
Jesus sends his disciples on ahead of him, and he seeks solitude on a mountain. Here is the first lesson and probably the hardest for us, it definitely is for me: Christian leadership flows from prayer and contemplation. A specifically Christian leadership begins with our communion with the Triune God: Jesus will teach us the way if we listen to his Spirit.
Jesus then joins the disciples he sent ahead of him on the stormy sea. Jesus goes to where he is needed and provides the lesson that his disciples need. After contemplation comes right action; the Spirit of Christ sends us out to do the work that we are called to do, but only after we invite it to. As Saint Peter shows us. We often focus on Peter’s failure, but he is the first of the disciples to follow in Jesus’ steps. He calls on Jesus, and he steps out onto the waves; yes, he falters, and sinks but he cries out again, and again Jesus is true to his word and Peter is saved. Peter is starting to learn from his teacher and ours. Haltingly, by steps and with setbacks on the stormy sea he follows his teacher who is there to teach and to save.

A Pastoral Letter from Bishop David
Sisters and Brothers of EDSJ,
I am aware that pastoral letters from my hand and heart reached you in March (two separate), April (again, two), May and June.  The last correspondence came to you on June 2nd.  Immediately following the issuing of that pastoral letter, a diocesan working group, as you know, put together recommendations for diocesan guidelines and protocols in our response to the pandemic. Subsequently, those recommendations were discussed and endorsed by Diocesan Council and Standing Committee and then made available to you.
Since June’s pastoral letter, much has occurred. We spent the month of July in the largest social platform gathering in EDSJ’s history.  Over one hundred gathered for five consecutive Wednesdays exploring and discussing realities of white supremacy, entitlement and privilege. We discussed the prevalence of institutional racism in our midst and explored how we might move from complicity to holy action. I know you join with me in thanking Constance and Dain Perry for facilitating this important work with us.
Continue reading the letter HERE.

“Those who live south of our border and who seek a better life in ‘the beautiful north’, those who patrol that same border, and those detained at the border are not stock players in a political drama. They aren’t one-dimensional characters in a newsreel, and while stereotyping and typecasting them may make it more comfortable or manageable for us to deal with the ‘problem’ as a whole, it distances us from their humanity, and consequently, I would argue, from our own.” – The Rev. Luis Rodriguez

The collection of artwork comes from the Tornillo Children’s Detention Camp where close to 3,000 unaccompanied minors from Central and South America were held. Art was a way to express their faith, the love of their family and friends, and pride in their homeland.
To learn more about the artwork, read this article from the New York Times

EDSJ Virtual Bible Study
No Longer Strangers: Exploring Immigration Issues
The study is scheduled for consecutive Tuesdays in August (11th, 18th, 25th) and Tuesday, September 1st from 6-7 pm via Zoom. No Longer Strangers was developed by Forward Movement in conultation with staff from Episcopal Migrations Ministries and the Office of Government Relations of The Episcopal Church. It examines the complex issue of immigration and offers a chance for discussion of this topic from a Biblical perspective.

Please share the flyer with your congregation and invite them to participate in a Bible-based study about this important and timely issue. Each meeting will be co-facilitated by an EDSJ clergy person.

Eat Less Plastic
Plastic, it is a major part of our lives. Our food is wrapped in it, toys are mad from it, it is found in devices we use everyday. But what you may not know is we are not only using plastics we are also ingesting them.
When you eat a bite of food or even take a sip of water you may be taking in tiny plastic particles along with it. Some researches believe the average person consumes about 5gm of plastic every 7 days. That’s like eating a credit card every week.
Humans have produced more than eight billion metric tons of plastic mostly since the 1950’s, and less than 10% of it has ever been recycled. There is so much plastic all around that we likely breath in tens of thousands of tiny plastic fragments or fibers every year.
Why is there so much plastic in our food, water, and the air around us? Plastics are very durable materials. Things made out of plastic can last quite a long time. However, they are not perfectly durable. Which means plastics can degrade through normal wear and tear. Just think about all the ways in which plastics are used. Everything from food containers to cell phone cases. The wear and tear from repetitive use can produce tiny microscopic fragments, which are called micro-plastics. Over time, these micro-plastics make their way into the environment. Like our lakes and rivers, the soil, and even into our oceans. These materials ultimately end up contaminating our food and water supply.
We don’t completely know for sure what effect ingesting all the micro-plastics might have on us. More research is needed to determine at what levels exposure becomes particularly dangerous. Experts recommend a precautionary approach.
Here are six tips you can do to reduce your exposure to micro plastics.
  1. Drink water from your tap. Drinking water is one of the biggest contributors to micro plastic ingestion. Bottled water has double the level of micro plastic level of tap water. So unless you know your tap water is unsafe, it is best to drink tap water instead of anything from a plastic bottle.
  2. Don’t heat food in plastic. Heated plastics have been known to leach chemicals into food. So, if you are warming up food use a pan in the oven or on the stove, or if you are microwaving use a glass container. You should also avoid putting plastics into your dishwasher.
  3. Avoid certain plastic food containers with known issues. The American Academy of Pediatrics has noted that plastic food containers with recycling codes 3, 6, and 7 may indicated the presence of some potentially harmful chemicals. You may want to avoid using containers that have those codes unless they are labeled bio-based or greenware.
  4. Eat fresh food. Fresh foods are less likely to expose you to concerning chemicals. Especially when compared to anything wrapped in plastic. Also, many food cans are lined with concerning chemicals.
  5. Minimize household dust. Dust in your house can contain chemicals that are found in plastic. So you should vacuum regularly.
  6. Thing big picture. Plastic production is expected to more than quadruple between 2015 and 2050, which means the amount of plastic contamination in the environment will rise along with it. Consumers should opt for products packaged in glass instead of plastic and use reusable non-plastic containers whenever possible.
If you follow these tips you can remove the amount of plastic in your life and in your body.

 Friday Reflection
All articles and special news can be submitted to the Diocesan Office at: dioadmin@diosanjoaquin.org
All submissions are due MONDAY for the following Friday Reflection.
Submission requirements:
pictures -JPEG format
articles- word document
document to link- PDF
Please edit pictures for best brightness, contrast, and lighting before sending.

Events Warranting Your
Participation and Prayers

   Diocesan Events
Diocesan/Cathedral Worship
SJRAISE – Virtual Bible Study

August 11 | 6:00 PM
ZOOM
Mary Meditation
August 12 | 6:30 PM
Bishop and Canon Visitation
August 12 | 7:00 PM
Taft – ZOOM
COVID Clergy Conversations
August 13 | 12:30 PM
ZOOM
Diocesan/Cathedral Worship
SJRAISE – Virtual Bible Study

August 18 | 6:00 PM
ZOOM
Creation Care Commission Animators/Advocates Gathering
August 18 | 7:00 PM
ZOOM
Bishop and Canon Visitation
August 19 | 7:00 PM
Ridgecrest – ZOOM
COVID Clergy Conversations
August 20 | 12:30 PM
ZOOM
Deacon’s Gathering with Bishop David
August 22 | 10 AM
ZOOM
Diocesan/Cathedral Worship
SJRAISE – Virtual Bible Study

August 25 | 6:00 PM
ZOOM
Bishop and Canon Visitation
August 26 | 7:00 PM
St. John’s, Stockton – ZOOM
COVID Clergy Conversations
August 27 | 12:30 PM
ZOOM
DC/SC Joint Meeting
August 29 | 10 AM
ZOOM
Diocesan/Cathedral Worship

Mary model of Christian life and believer in the promise of the Eternal Life
Join us on Facebook live for our monthly bilingual gathering on the study of Mary.
August 12 at 6:30 PM on Facebook live!

REGISTER NOW!
St. James Sunday School launches digitally on Sunday, September 13th. During the digital church period, St. James Sunday School is open to all school-aged children in the Diocese. Registration is required to participate! The kick-off session will begin with student check-in at 9:00AM and the lesson will begin at 9:15AM. The first day of Sunday School is designed for the whole family to join-in. The morning will include the blessing of the teachers and the students. We invite you to check out the St. James Children’s Ministry web page for more about our ministry with children and our curriculum Weaving God’s Promises.
SUNDAY SCHOOL TEACHERS ARE NEEDED
Teacher recruitment period is now! If you feel called to the ministry of the spiritual formation of children, please send an email to teach@stjamesfresno.org. Teachers can be members of any Episcopal congregation in the Diocese.
Prior to the first session, Dean Ryan and the Sunday School Committee will host via ZOOM an Orientation and Training session for all interested teachers. No prior teaching or Sunday School experience is required-all that is required is a willing and committed heart to educating the next generation of the Church. In addition to the Orientation and Training session, teachers will be required to take an online training module called Safeguarding God’s Children–an in-depth educational and training program for preventing and responding to child sexual abuse in everyday life and in ministry.
BASIC INFORMATION
Classes are Sundays at 9:15AM on ZOOM. Registration for Sunday School opens August 1st. Please visit St. James website for link to registration. The first session is Sunday, September 13th and the whole family is invited to participate.
CURRICULUM
Weaving God’s Promises is a comprehensive, three-year Christian education curriculum for children developed and written exclusively for the Episcopal Church. Weaving God’s Promises’ 30-minute lesson plans are accessed online. There will be a “take-home” paper, Threads, that will be emailed to every family after each lesson. Threads allows families to continue the conversation and theme throughout the week.
BASIC SUNDAY SCHOOL LESSON FORMAT
  1. Gathering and Greeting
  2. Sunday School Prayer
  3. Sunday School Song
  4. About the Scripture Story
  5. Telling the Story
  6. Activity Related to the Story
  7. Weaving Our Faith: Conversation about the story
  8. Closing Prayer
TEACHER COVENANT OF COMMITMENT
(Developed by Sunday School Committee)
With God’s Help I Covenant 
To practice the spiritual disciplines of scripture reading and prayer.
  • Worship on Sundays and be an active member of the St. James community or other church in the Episcopal Diocese of San Joaquin.
  • Be prepared: Read the curriculum and plan my lessons.
  • Grow in my faith and understanding of my work through educational opportunities as offered.
  • Practice inclusive hospitality as Jesus teaches us the love of God is the love of neighbor.

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The Episcopal Diocese of San Joaquin, 4147 E Dakota AVE, Fresno, CA 93726
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17. July 2020 · Comments Off on St Anne’s New Solar Panels · Categories: Uncategorized · Tags: , , , , , ,

Solar panels were installed at St Anne last week. They will help fulfill our commitment to be good stewards of the environment as well as keeping our utility costs down.

 

25. November 2017 · Comments Off on Family Promise Program Info · Categories: Outreach · Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

Family Promise Program

St Anne and several other churches in the Stockton area are working together to set up this successful nationwide program here in our area.

The goal of the program is to assist families with the resources that they need to get themselves into stable homes that will benefit them as well as the community.

By clicking on the links below you can access a lot of information

Family Promise Program

Family Promise FAQs

Family Promise Affiliates

Family Promise Typical Host Week

31. May 2017 · Comments Off on A tad late but still appreciated! · Categories: Outreach · Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

Stockton’s Family Shelter was very happy to receive a donation from St Anne. The donation was made possible by the generosity of the attendees at Pub Night 2016. Due to a clerical error the donation was a little late but never the less it will still help with the great work that the shelter does.

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Joaquin
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The Friday Reflection Title
February 5, 2016
Called to Be…Deacons
Shortly after the Ascension of Jesus, the flourishing Church came to the point where the Twelve could no longer meaningfully preach and teach and effectively minister to the needs of the expanding community. This concern was addressed in Acts: “In those days when the number of disciples was increasing, the Hellenistic Jews among them complained against the Hebraic Jews because their widows were being overlooked in the daily distribution of food. So the Twelve gathered all the disciples together and said ‘It would not be right for us to neglect the ministry of the word of God in order to wait on tables’.”(Acts 6:1-2) And so it came to pass that a small group was selected to serve in this capacity.
Over time, these servants or ministers became known as deacons. Their numbers grew and their role and contributions in the community evolved to meet the needs within their local context. Phoebe was a deacon in Greece who received accolades from Paul in his letter to the Romans (Rom. 16:1). Philip baptized an Ethiopian (Acts 8:26-40) and tradition holds that this newly baptized brother returned to his homeland and was instrumental in founding the Church there. St. Francis of Assisi was, (reluctantly), ordained a deacon and birthed the Order of the Franciscans.
While all Christians are called to be…ministers of Christ and his Church, we recognize that some are called to the particular ministry of the diaconate. This is an ordained ministry that, in part, helps to identify the needs of the community outside the walls of the Church and to work to meet those needs. Depending upon the circumstances, this work may take the form of community organizing, advocacy, and/or working side-by-side with existing organizations to partner with them by leveraging their expertise and lending much needed support.
Christian community ministry is always bathed in prayer. The deacon performs a distinctive role in the liturgy of the Church, taking the needs of the world to the worshiping community by offering prayers of intercession, (The Prayers of the People). Deacons also proclaim the Gospel and may preach on occasion to further inform the congregation of the needs of the suffering and their role as Christians to work diligently to alleviate class distinctions, hunger, poverty, and lift up those relegated to the margins of society.
Of course, this is not a comprehensive model of the diaconate. This ministry varies according to the needs of the communities served and according to the gifts of the minister. Gifts are as varied as are the individuals being called.
So here is the question….might you be hearing the call to the diaconate? Might you be feeling a restlessness, an urge, a longing?
Here are the first steps: pray, pray, pray. Pray for guidance. Pray for discernment. Pray for strength. Pray for courage. Pray for wisdom. Then go and talk with your priest. After listening and praying with you, he or she may convene a parish/congregational commission to help with the discernment process. The road to Holy Orders, (ordination), is one that is discerned and supported in community. From there you may be invited to enter into conversation with the bishop and may be referred to a diocesan Commission on Ministry to further discern the calling. In time, they may send you to the School for Deacons here in San Joaquin.
The School for Deacons in our diocese is a rigorous, intensive program, with small class sizes and hands-on mentors.
It meets once a month, eleven months a year. The academic portion of this formation is two years.
Is God calling you to this?
You will find yourself immersed in Holy Scripture and learning about Church History and theology.
Can you hear the call?
You will learn to lead the Daily Office, to become accustomed to reading with clarity and authority, and to teach with confidence.
Is God calling you?
Skills in community organizing, spiritual practices, and pastoral care are also offered.
Are you hearing the call?
Are you Called to be…a deacon?
The Rev. Michele Racusin

Human Trafficking News
Freedom Sunday
 February 7th

is a day to take time to proclaim freedom for all who are trapped in modern day slavery. Read more

Diocesan Events

Central Deanery Gathering – February 6- update 
The next gathering of the Central Deanery will be on Saturday, February 6 in Fresno. We will be joining Taizé Fresno at the First Congregational Church (also known as The Big Red Church on Van Ness) at 2131 N. Van Ness Avenue for a day of Taizé Prayer with a theme of Social Justice. The event starts at 8:a.m. with registration and refreshments, followed by Taizé prayer introduction by Sherah Moore and Sandy DeGraff.
The Rev. Suzy Ward of St. Paul’s Episcopal Church in Visalia will present the first general session, “Reflections on the Tour Against Trafficking,” at 9 a.m.  At 10:15 a.m., participants can choose between several prayer-experience sessions.  The final prayer session concludes at 3:45 pm. The cost is $25 if registered by February 1, and $30 after that date. Lunch is included.  No formal meeting will be held, but during the breaks and at lunch time, members of the Central Deanery and friends can meet and socialize. To view the brochure, and print the registration form for mailing, go to:http://www.earthprayers.net/taizeweekend.htm

Diocesan Events

Central Deanery Gathering, February 6, 8:00am,  First Congregational Church, Fresno

Commission On Ministry Meeting, February 13, 10am, Holy Family, Fresno

Diocesan Council/Standing Committee Retreat, February 19-20, ECCO

Southern Deanery Meeting, February 27, 11am, St. Sherrian’s, Kernville

Northern Deanery Meeting, March 19, 10 am, St. Paul’s, Modesto

Chrism Mass, Tuesday, March 22, 11am, Holy Family Fresno

News from St. Raphael’s, Oakhurst

New time!
St. Raphael Episcopal Church in Oakhurst is now holding their Sunday Service st 10:00am

They meet at 49777 School Road in Oakhurst

 From: ecf Vital Practices

Reboot’ Your Vestry”
by Nancy Davidge on February 3, 2016
Creating a vibrant and vital vestry is an ongoing task. The period following your annual meeting, when newly elected members join the vestry, is a good time to review and renew your congregation’s vision statement and to think about what putting this vision into practice looks like. This month our articles support you in these efforts, with our fourth article sharing a practice designed to free up meeting time to address these important issues.Read more

The Five Marks of Mission
The Five Marks of Mission
      
Click here for poster to post

Deacon Coat Ministry
We have a new Deacon Coat Ministry in our diocese! Click
here for more information and more pictures of the coats!

Congratulations to Amanda Gaona
Amanda Gaona, St. Paul’s, Bakersfield was selected by our 26th Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori as a member of the Episcopal Church’s delegation to the United Nations Commission on the Status of Women (UNCSW) during its 60th session.

Please see attached letter asking for financial support for Amanda to attend this very important event.  Click here.

We are very excited that a delegate was chosen from our Diocese. Please help Amanda get there.

Please contact the Diocesan Office if you which to donate.

Travel to the
Land of the Holy One

From The Rev. Heather Mueller

Dear friends in the Diocese of San Joaquin,

As many of you already know I am organizing a group for travel to the Land of the Holy One.
The pilgrimage is scheduled for September 23 to October 6, 2016, with the option of going to Jordan….Petra and possibly Ista #CDD7E9nbul.

It is time to make a decision about going and I will connect each person with the travel agent who will work out the travel details. Read more.

For Flyer click here.

Website Links
Tour Against Trafficking
The Episcopal Church
Episcopal Church Foundation
TENS
Episcopal News Service
Integrity USA

Calendars

Missional Bags

 
SUPPORT THE BAG!

Send your donations to The Episcopal Diocese of San Joaquin, 1528 Oakdale Road, Modesto, CA 95355. Please write Yellow Bags in the memo line.
Thank you.

Friday Reflection

Stories of the Bag, Missional Days, Special Events Articles can be submitted to the Diocesan Office atemeyer@diosanjoaquin.org.

All submissions are due no later than the Tuesday before the FridayReflection. Pictures submitted are to be in jpeg format and forms to be attached to the FridayReflection are best in PDF format.

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The Episcopal Diocese of San Joaquin  1528 Oakdale Road, Modesto, CA 95355
PH 209-576-0104 F 209-576-0114 E contact@diosanjoaquin.org

Who’s it going to be Denver Broncos or the Carolina Panthers.

It looks like Denver is slightly favored right now

Where’s the love for Carolina

It’s a classic East West Battle that may be decided by either Chicken Noodle or Minestrone.

St Anne’s Annual Souper Bowl Drive to feed those in need has begun.

Cast your votes now with a can of soup.

You can vote as often as you like and everyone is a winner!