17. March 2017 · Comments Off on Friday Reflections March 17, 2017 · Categories: Bishop, Friday Reflections · Tags: , , , ,
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The Friday Reflection Title
March 17, 2017

From The Rev. Canon Anna Carmichael

Dear Sisters and Brothers in Christ,

Thank you for allowing me to share with you some brief reflections on stewardship and The Episcopal Network for Stewardship (TENS) at our Special Meeting of Convention on March 4.  As a parish priest, I had to overcome a lot of obstacles–both personal and pastoral–to be able to talk about stewardship with any confidence.
Part of this lack of confidence on my part was because I was operating out of a place of scarcity.  I was worried that because I wasn’t a “tither” (a 10% giver) that I had no right or reason to talk about stewardship; that my financial contribution to the parish was insignificant.  But as I worked with my bishop, as I learned from TENS, as I spoke with other clergy in the area, I realized that my contribution was right along the national average for my income and household expenses–I’m a 5% giver.  After some serious conversation and prayer, I came to accept that I was not living in scarcity, but I was living in abundance.  And as a result, I felt freer to share my time, talent and treasure with my community.
Now, let me unpack these concepts of “scarcity” and “abundance” with you.
Abundance is about really living as a Christian–about knowing that we are called to be partners with God in making the world a better place.  Abundance is about seeing the world around us as a gift from God that it is freely given out of a place of love.  Abundance is about accepting the gifts from God that we have been given, and then sharing those gifts with others.  We can’t outdo God’s generosity, but we can share God’s love with others.
Scarcity, on the other hand, is about believing that you don’t have enough.  It’s rooted in fear and a sense of loss.  Scarcity is also about control.  When we feel like we are loosing control of things, we start grabbing at anything not nailed down, and ultimately we decide we don’t have enough.  Scarcity is the opposite of abundance (which may seem obvious), but really it’s the opposite of receiving the gifts freely given to us by God.
For me personally, the shift from scarcity to abundance was also about accepting my identity as a beloved child of God and of being created in the image of God.  Which means that the abundance of my life is meant to be shared with others; not kept only for myself.
As you think about stewardship, whether for yourself or your congregation, I invite you to consider how you live abundantly.  Where is the spirit of abundance rooted?  Is it in your care of your neighbor?  Is it in your sharing of your talents and skills?  How are you sharing your abundance?
God’s peace be with you all,
Canon Anna

Business Card Outreach

A few years back, my wife Terry and I were in Sarasota, FL to visit my sister and her family. While we were there, we attended church at St. Margaret of Scotland Episcopal Church there in Sarasota. One of the things they gave to newcomers was a generic church business card with all the pertinent information. At the time we thought it was a great idea and we brought one home to show everyone. Although everyone back at Church of the Saviour liked the idea, the idea fell by the wayside. Fast forward to a few weeks ago and Terry and I were preparing for Ash Wednesday and Ashes to Go. Terry remembered the business card idea and thought it would be a good idea to hand them out during Ashes to Go, along with a flyer with Church of the Saviour’s Lent and Holy Week schedule. I had put together a business card template, at an online printer, that Church of the Saviour has been using for staff business cards and it was trivial to replace the name and title with “All are Welcome!” and service times. By the way, Ashes to Go was an overwhelming success with over 200 foreheads “ashed”.
It was obvious that the business cards could be used year round as an outreach tool and this last Sunday, our Priest-in-Charge; Father John Day introduced them to the congregation. He asked that parishioners take a few and give them out to friends, family, co-workers and anyone else when it seemed appropriate. This last Saturday at the Special Convention, Terry showed one of the cards to Bp. David, he loved the idea and asked that she write up something for the Friday Reflection. I was immediately “assigned” to write the article. This idea is certainly not new or original, but it is such a simple way to introduce your Church to others. It is also very inexpensive; our cards were $18.21 for 500 cards, including tax and shipping. We use Vistaprint online, but any online or local printer would obviously work. If you have any questions, feel free to email me at [email protected]
Jeff March, Episcopal Church of the Saviour

A Day of Discovery
A Program for Discerning Ministry
in the Episcopal Church
May 13, 2017
10:00 a.m. -3:00 p.m.
St James Episcopal Cathedral
4147 E Dakota Ave, Fresno, CA 93726
Day of Discovery is designed to help Episcopalians broaden their understanding and appreciation of the four groups of ministers in the Episcopal Church. Participants will discover new arenas for ministry as well as see and experience the complementary relationship between all ministers of the Church.
Some people limit their definition of discernment as primarily an activity to find THEIR ministry, THEIR career, or THEIR place. This program, on the other hand, will define discernment as primarily a lifelong process of perceiving, listening, and responding to the movement of the Holy Spirit.
Most of all, Day of Discovery is designed to help people Discover and Appreciate the Mission and Ministry of Christ, how the Episcopal Church expresses that ministry, and how each person fits into that expression.

Click here for more information and registration form.

 2017 Theme:
 Journey to Generosity
The theme for the 2017 pledge drive materials provided by TENS will be, “Journey to Generosity”.  Bulletin inserts, letters and other support material will carry this theme and logo.  Look for additional information in January, 2017. Stewardship is year long!

Contact the Diocesan Office for the 2017 password!

What’s All the Fuss About CRISPR?
with Dr. Ted Peters

Sunday, April 23, 2017
5:15 pm – Light dinner
6 pm – Lecture, followed by Q&A
Shepherd of the Valley Lutheran Church

Hosted by:
Shepherd of the Valley Lutheran Church in partnership with Merced Wesley Foundation, United Methodist Church of Merced,
Merced Episcopal Church,
 LifeSpring Church,
Unitarian Universalists of Merced,
and Unity of Merced.
Click here for more information.

El Señor sea con ustedes.
Spanish Language Eucharist is now being offered at St James Cathedral on the
2nd and 4th Wednesdays of the month at 12:15.
We are grateful for The Rev. Canon Keith Brown’s pastoral leadership in
this new ministry being offered.
Regardless of your proficiency with Spanish, please know that you are always welcome!
Dios habla en muchos idiomas.
La paz del Señor sea siempre con ustedes.

Diocesan Events
       Standing Committee Meeting

Tuesday, March 28

Diocesan Council Meeting Teleconference/Adobe
Thursday, March 30

Commission on Ministry
Saturday, April 8
St. James Cathedral, Fresno
Chrism Mass
Tuesday, April 11
St. James Cathedral, Fresno
Saturday, April 29
Diocesan Council Mtg 10am
Joint Meeting 12noon
Standing Committee Meeting 1pm
St. James Cathedral, Fresno
Northern Deanery Clericus
Wednesday, May 3
St. Paul’s, Modesto
Clergy Retreat
May 9-11, 2017
St. Anthony’s Retreat Center
Three Rivers, CA
Day of Discovery
Saturday May 13
St. James Cathedral, Fresno
Northern Deanery Meeting
Saturday, May 20th
St. Paul’s, Modesto

Friday Reflection

All articles and special news can be submitted to the Diocesan Office at: [email protected]

All submissions are due MONDAY for the following Friday Reflection.
Submission requirements:

pictures -JPEG format
articles- word document
linked documents- PDF

Please send all information as attachments.
Please edit pictures for best brightness, contrast, and lighting before sending in.
The Episcopal Diocese of San Joaquin, 1528 Oakdale Road, Modesto, CA 95355
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